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Author Topic: Judging clear cuts  (Read 806 times)

Offline optic2

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Judging clear cuts
« on: November 03, 2017, 11:25:31 PM »
How do you judge the age of clear cuts? Could someone tell me what the age of these clear cuts are:





The reason I ask is that I've read some things that say to hunt different ages of clear cuts but I don't know how to judge their age. If anyone has in pictures that would better describe some different ages of clear cuts I would like to see them.

Offline Crunchy

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Re: Judging clear cuts
« Reply #1 on: November 03, 2017, 11:52:21 PM »
First one is tough as it doesn't look as if they replanted anything.  I would guess 2-3 years old.  The last one is the money cut, I would guess 12 years old.  Number 3 is 5ish, and number 2 looks to be 2-3 with some replanting.  Hard to say because of the distance.  If you are hunting deer I like 7 years plus.  It has decent cover and the deer feel comfortable in them. 

Offline fishnfur

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Re: Judging clear cuts
« Reply #2 on: November 04, 2017, 12:43:22 AM »
Those are pretty good guesses on ages. 

First one - treated with herbicide and planted last winter?

Second - 2nd year after planting

Third - I love this cut.  Full of groceries, but not enough cover to hold a bunch of deer all day.  Does will stay in there all day if no one walks through it frequently.  There should be lots of deer using this cut at night.  This one will likely be really good next year, and for at least 3 -5 more years depending on whether or not it has been planted.  It may be that it just wasn't treated with herbicide, which is a big plus for hunters.

Fourth - I count 12 years on the trees in the foreground.  Central right looks like it may be a couple years younger.

You can age the cut from the date of planting by counting the whorls on the fir/Doug Fir.  Each major growth of stem between whorls of branches is one years growth.  Many industrial forestlands are cut, herbicide treated the next summer, then planted the following winter, or the winter after that.  You have to judge the quality of the cut for deer hunting based on the amount of space left between the trees to grow food and also how well you to be able to see deer in the mix.  Fertility of the soils determines how fast the trees grow and how fast the space between them disappears and no longer grows deer food (under dense shade).  This varies from area to area, so the age of the cut is all relative when it comes to hunting, but once the canopy is closed, the unit is good for cover but bad for food (and hard to hunt).
« Last Edit: November 04, 2017, 12:48:52 AM by fishnfur »
“When I die, I want to die like my grandfather who died peacefully in his sleep. Not screaming like all the passengers in his car.”  - Will Rogers

Offline opdinkslayer

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Re: Judging clear cuts
« Reply #3 on: November 04, 2017, 07:56:40 AM »
I would mostly agree with this above. Couple things I would add is that fir units have a much longer expiration date on them than hemlock. Also if your just wanting to kill any buck then everything in the window of 2 & 3 are your targets with a chance at a big buck making a fatal mistake during the rut. Luck and right place/right time is required to be successful hunting units like #4 unless its fir with openings of feed still left and still the odds are against you. :twocents:

Offline Sitka_Blacktail

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Re: Judging clear cuts
« Reply #4 on: November 04, 2017, 08:11:44 AM »
1. newly logged, this year. Not planted.
2. 3 years, 2nd year after planting. All planting is done Jan-April when trees are dormant causes the least shock. The first year, they don;'t grow much above ground but root systems are developing.
3. 3 years again. This is a unit that came up in fireweed. May not have been sprayed with herbicide.
4. 7-8 years This is about the time that growth really kicks in and this unit is probably only good for hunting one more year before it's impossible to see anything.
A man who fears suffering is already suffering from what he fears. ~ Michel de Montaigne

Offline Bullkllr

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Re: Judging clear cuts
« Reply #5 on: November 04, 2017, 08:29:59 AM »
Agree with the replies. But personally I wouldn't over-think the age thing.

There are many factors that go into animals using a cut besides age: size, proximity to other cuts, roads all around it, hunting pressure, gated/non-gated, type of undergrowth, steepness, game population in the area- for some examples.

Is there sign? Can you see animals in it? Can you effectively hunt the timber around the cut?
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Offline Big6bull

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Re: Judging clear cuts
« Reply #6 on: November 04, 2017, 10:49:30 AM »
I’ve had good success in many age groups. Don’t over look new cuts. Lack of cover can be deceiving and it’s amazing how well a deer can be hidden in a new cut.

Offline Molon5labe

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Re: Judging clear cuts
« Reply #7 on: November 04, 2017, 07:11:22 PM »
In just a few responses you can see the cut age guess variation. We've got from  5 to 12 years on the #3 cut. I go by replanted tree height. Fresh cut, Knee, 5ft, Xmas tree, 12ft, etc


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