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Author Topic: Muley Reports Chelan and Okanogan Counties  (Read 12157 times)

Offline Odell

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Re: Muley Reports Chelan and Okanogan Counties
« Reply #75 on: October 27, 2019, 08:05:49 AM »
From my wolf diary!
March 17 2010     *last day the female was seen (she denned)
More wolves this morning.  As the sun hit the hill approximately 7:45, I thought the deer were placed different than normal. My gut told me to grab the binoís and take a look, soon I spotted #2, #3, and #4 wolves standing together at attention looking into a sharp draw that I couldnít see the very bottom of.  I quickly set up the scope and about that time a cougar came charging out on the tail of #1 wolf, they went about a 100 feet then the other 3 wolves joined in and they put the cat at bay, then circling and charging in at it they made the cat start backing up, about 10 minuets of this they had the cat backed past the kill ( Iím sure it was the cats kill) and it turned and ran with the wolves on itís tail to a lone pine tree, it treed and 3 wolves kept it up the tree while #1 went to the kill and drug the deer AROUND a very steep side hill for 30 feet (this would have been very hard for a man to do, it took several minuets) the deer rolled once, (I could see it was completely intact)     (the only reason I can think of would be to get the carcass out in the open so they could claim it easier)  It must have taken #1 about an hour to get her fill and get back so #2 could eat which didnít take so long until he got back and #3 & #4 could eat together, they didnít eat long until #1 started to leave, #2 followed her and then #3, they were strung out a mile when they all stopped and the back two come back slowly waiting for #4 which was still eating, #1 continued on around the hill to never be seen again.  #2 (a male) took over the kill and soon got a BIG chunk loose and carried it around the hill Ĺ mile before he was out of sight, soon #3 followed with a big chunk. The three carried meat for an hour (5 loads) always on the same path and always leaving one at the kill so the cat couldnít get any.  A couple times one would make a run at the tree like the cat might have started down. I could only see the cat part of the time in the limbs. Finally the three just lied down near the cat tree watching, once they suddenly made a run at the tree, #2 going clear in while the other two hung back a little.  After a long while the wolves just wondered up over the hill out of sight.  I put my full attention on the tree for 20 minuets and about decided the cat must have slipped out when I seen a limb move more than the wind, soon the cat jumped out and went to where the kill was then up to where the kill had started from, about that time another cat come out of the tree and joined her, then another cat appeared from some place. It was a mother and two 2-3 year old kittens.  There was absolutely nothing left for them to eat so they wondered up over the hill probably to make another kill some place. It was 11:50 when the cats went out of sight so this was a long watch.

wow, that would be something to see!
what in the wild wild world of sports???

Offline boneaddict

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Re: Muley Reports Chelan and Okanogan Counties
« Reply #76 on: October 27, 2019, 08:12:40 AM »
From my wolf diary!
March 17 2010     *last day the female was seen (she denned)
More wolves this morning.  As the sun hit the hill approximately 7:45, I thought the deer were placed different than normal. My gut told me to grab the binoís and take a look, soon I spotted #2, #3, and #4 wolves standing together at attention looking into a sharp draw that I couldnít see the very bottom of.  I quickly set up the scope and about that time a cougar came charging out on the tail of #1 wolf, they went about a 100 feet then the other 3 wolves joined in and they put the cat at bay, then circling and charging in at it they made the cat start backing up, about 10 minuets of this they had the cat backed past the kill ( Iím sure it was the cats kill) and it turned and ran with the wolves on itís tail to a lone pine tree, it treed and 3 wolves kept it up the tree while #1 went to the kill and drug the deer AROUND a very steep side hill for 30 feet (this would have been very hard for a man to do, it took several minuets) the deer rolled once, (I could see it was completely intact)     (the only reason I can think of would be to get the carcass out in the open so they could claim it easier)  It must have taken #1 about an hour to get her fill and get back so #2 could eat which didnít take so long until he got back and #3 & #4 could eat together, they didnít eat long until #1 started to leave, #2 followed her and then #3, they were strung out a mile when they all stopped and the back two come back slowly waiting for #4 which was still eating, #1 continued on around the hill to never be seen again.  #2 (a male) took over the kill and soon got a BIG chunk loose and carried it around the hill Ĺ mile before he was out of sight, soon #3 followed with a big chunk. The three carried meat for an hour (5 loads) always on the same path and always leaving one at the kill so the cat couldnít get any.  A couple times one would make a run at the tree like the cat might have started down. I could only see the cat part of the time in the limbs. Finally the three just lied down near the cat tree watching, once they suddenly made a run at the tree, #2 going clear in while the other two hung back a little.  After a long while the wolves just wondered up over the hill out of sight.  I put my full attention on the tree for 20 minuets and about decided the cat must have slipped out when I seen a limb move more than the wind, soon the cat jumped out and went to where the kill was then up to where the kill had started from, about that time another cat come out of the tree and joined her, then another cat appeared from some place. It was a mother and two 2-3 year old kittens.  There was absolutely nothing left for them to eat so they wondered up over the hill probably to make another kill some place. It was 11:50 when the cats went out of sight so this was a long watch.
National Geographic from the front porch.   Nice documentary.   I think Todd and maybe Charlie B got pics of one of those cats shortly after you told them about it.

I found that den.  Just out of site from where they hauled the meat.

Offline Idabooner

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Re: Muley Reports Chelan and Okanogan Counties
« Reply #77 on: October 28, 2019, 07:47:43 AM »
More from the diary.   Todd and Charley got some real good pictures of the cougar and the buried kill.  These wolves were packing meat to the den just out of sight.
March 20 2010
Last night a coyote straight across on the hill was barking funny, since the wolves have moved in I donít hear the coyotes much any more and it was a different bark than normal so  I listened, this morning I learned what the problem was.
First sun this morning I checked the hill, no deer in sight on this end, must be the wolves are around.  After 15 minutes with the scope I picked up on a dog two miles north coming this way, soon there were 4 of them and they were slipping up on 7 deer that were feeding just over a raise and didnít know they were about to be attack.  By this time I had decided these were coyotes, they got close to the deer and made a run at them, the deer run a little then turned the attack on the coyotes, this went back and forth 3-4 times then a 5th coyote joined in, he had just been sitting way back.  The dogs didnít like him so they chased him up and down the hillside forgetting the deer, this went on for several minutes before they accepted him.  The 5 kept coming closer until they were straight across from me where they circled something in the tall sage, they kept diving in at it and jumping back.  One dove in and a cougar come back on his tail, the cat went right back into the bush, the coyotes worked on him for awhile trying to get at his kill,  I only seen him move a couple times in the bushes.  They finally gave up and drifted back towards where they had come from.
My legs wonít take me there anymore, so I thought about calling Boneaddict but heís 4 hours away and at a ball game with the girls.  So I called for Mountainman1 with his camera, he was not available so after a while Wolfbait showed up with a good camera, I showed him the bushes the cat was in, in the mean time the coyotes had come back and tried again so we knew the cat was still there.
Wolfbait took out to see if he could get some pictures, Mountainman1 showed up so they slipped in on the cat and got some good pictures up real close.  The cougar was laying on a deer kill and had time to bury it all except the head.  I was watching these guys with the scope to see which one the cat chose, they were smart enough to split apart, the cat bailed the other way when they were less than 100 feet from it.

That makes 4 cougar, 4wolves and 5 coyotes in two days that Iíve watched from the window, anybody wondering where the deer went?

March 21 2010
Next morning at first light 3 wolves were on the carcass, they had pulled it 50 feet and were taking turns on it while fighting off the eagles and ravens, one got a big hunk and carried it a little ways so another could have his turn.  The last one was tossing the carcass around getting his chunk (not much left) when all 3 had a big chunk straight up over the hill they went carrying their load, it took them maybe 2 minutes to get over the top, it would take a good athlete at least Ĺ hour. In a half hour the eagles had got what was left and went away so the ravens and magpies are all over the area looking for scraps.  It seems like the birds and coyotes are eating well this spring.

March 22 2010
Watched 3 wolves on the ridge this morning.

Offline boneaddict

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Re: Muley Reports Chelan and Okanogan Counties
« Reply #78 on: October 28, 2019, 08:01:14 AM »
Not sure where it fits in with this timeline, but I thought it was funny when I finally got up there and we were watching several wolves put a stalk on some deer, and the phone rings.....its the biologist, who admits in the conversation he had never seen a wolf.  We were watching 4 or 5 of them from the front window in the living room when he called and as we were talking to him on the phone. :chuckle: :bash:

Offline wsmnut

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Re: Muley Reports Chelan and Okanogan Counties
« Reply #79 on: October 28, 2019, 08:57:28 AM »
Not sure where it fits in with this timeline, but I thought it was funny when I finally got up there and we were watching several wolves put a stalk on some deer, and the phone rings.....its the biologist, who admits in the conversation he had never seen a wolf.  We were watching 4 or 5 of them from the front window in the living room when he called and as we were talking to him on the phone. :chuckle: :bash:

Would this be the same biologist who has been quoted as saying ďas long as there are enough deer for the tourists to see, we donít care?Ē
Wsmnut


Belief is so often the death of reason.
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Offline boneaddict

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Re: Muley Reports Chelan and Okanogan Counties
« Reply #80 on: October 28, 2019, 09:00:31 AM »
I'm not sure, but I sure shook my head.  I'm not sure how you could be studying an animal or know the animal very well IF YOUD NEVER EVEN SEEN ONE.   

Offline bigmacc

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Re: Muley Reports Chelan and Okanogan Counties
« Reply #81 on: October 28, 2019, 09:28:59 AM »
It really is a shame what they have let happen to the Methow herd, just a shame, its once mighty mule deer herd is just a memory to most of us, seeing predators nowadays is becoming more common than seeing deer. Once the food source has been diminished to a certain point it will be very interesting to see how this all plays out, will the wolves and cats move on or will they turn more and more to pets and livestock and heaven forbid increasing altercations with humans. If some of this does happen I hope the public will hold the fire of responsibility to the appropriate feet. We know its just a matter of time before more and more tragic run-ins start to occur, I know pets and livestock have already been targets, some tragic encounters with people are not to far off I,m afraid.

Thanks for sharing your diary entries Idabooner :tup:, they paint the picture a lot of us have been looking at.

Offline DOUBLELUNG

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Re: Muley Reports Chelan and Okanogan Counties
« Reply #82 on: October 28, 2019, 03:30:34 PM »
I didn't hunt due to health reasons.  I was concerned when the deer showed up in our neighborhood on the 21st, usually they don't come into town until November/December.  My impression is Chelan County deer are just above dismal, with 2018 being dismal: areas that had 80-100 deer wintering several years ago had 10-15 last year.  Those areas already have more deer than they did middle of winter last year, so that's a little optimistic.

My wife rode her horse up on a toad on the 21st, she said it was the biggest buck she's ever seen.  She's seen a 32" buck with mass and trash with me, she was confident it was bigger than that one.  She tried to take a picture with her phone but her horse didn't like the buck and she didn't get a photo.

My impression is we hit a low point spring 2017, stayed about steady 2018, and recruited some 2018 fawns and had good fawn production this year.  It would take 2-3 more good years in a row to get back to where we were 4-5 years ago.   
As long as we have the habitat, we can argue forever about who gets to kill what and when.  No habitat = no game.

Offline Ridgerunner

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Re: Muley Reports Chelan and Okanogan Counties
« Reply #83 on: October 28, 2019, 08:07:27 PM »
That is saying a lot right there.


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Offline Idabooner

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Re: Muley Reports Chelan and Okanogan Counties
« Reply #84 on: October 29, 2019, 08:26:27 AM »
One thing for sure, the predators WILL EAT, be it wild prey, domestic animals, what ever they can catch or each other.

Offline bigmacc

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Re: Muley Reports Chelan and Okanogan Counties
« Reply #85 on: October 29, 2019, 01:15:35 PM »
I didn't hunt due to health reasons.  I was concerned when the deer showed up in our neighborhood on the 21st, usually they don't come into town until November/December.  My impression is Chelan County deer are just above dismal, with 2018 being dismal: areas that had 80-100 deer wintering several years ago had 10-15 last year.  Those areas already have more deer than they did middle of winter last year, so that's a little optimistic.

My wife rode her horse up on a toad on the 21st, she said it was the biggest buck she's ever seen.  She's seen a 32" buck with mass and trash with me, she was confident it was bigger than that one.  She tried to take a picture with her phone but her horse didn't like the buck and she didn't get a photo.

My impression is we hit a low point spring 2017, stayed about steady 2018, and recruited some 2018 fawns and had good fawn production this year.  It would take 2-3 more good years in a row to get back to where we were 4-5 years ago.

I have some friends in the Chelan "area" that are basically saying what you are DOUBLELUNG, there does seem to be a few more deer showing this year compared to the last few, they said they are also seeing more spikes and small twos than they have seen in awhile. Have a buddy who lives in Omak and another that lives farther north in the Okanogan Valley, both have said deer are doing good in that Valley, in fact I know some folks who just this last season jumped over into the Okanogan Valley from the Methow, after not seeing many deer in the Methow. Three different camps that have Hunted the Methow for over 35 years, dismal deer numbers, but seen lots of sign of all three predators including wolf sign in areas they had not seen it in before. They went into the Ok. Valley and did fantastic, two of the camps filled up on very nice bucks and the other camp killed a couple real dandys. I,m  afraid as far as the Methow goes, the powers to be are in love with their predators too much, seen the trapping/collaring folks(UCAR vehicles) going up and down the Chewuch all week, sometimes 2-3 rigs in a convoy. There are still deer to bump into and I,m sure a few big fellas will hit the dirt during the late hunt but the overall numbers keep sliding in the wrong direction. I will be going into some old areas in the next few weeks to do some counts, I will post what I see and what I DONT see.
« Last Edit: October 29, 2019, 05:59:12 PM by bigmacc »

Offline bigmacc

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Re: Muley Reports Chelan and Okanogan Counties
« Reply #86 on: October 29, 2019, 06:07:14 PM »
One thing for sure, the predators WILL EAT, be it wild prey, domestic animals, what ever they can catch or each other.

Roger that, I have talked to more than one person who is missing pets OR knows someone who has lost pets in the last couple years, most of the times its been cats with an occasional coyote attack. I talked with one fella that told me a lot of people in the Methow have holes in their porches or decks from cats being shot from the topside. I like the part about the predators eating each other, unfortunately that will indicate that prey animals(deer) have crossed the line and the "predator pit" is becoming empty.

Offline Idabooner

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Re: Muley Reports Chelan and Okanogan Counties
« Reply #87 on: October 30, 2019, 07:31:06 AM »
One thing for sure, the predators WILL EAT, be it wild prey, domestic animals, what ever they can catch or each other.
I have witnessed this with domestic cats, which are predators.  I once worked at a place that had a lot of cats but they never fed them. There would be smaller ones with big holes in them where other cats had been eating them alive, when they finally died the live cats would eat them completely, it was terrible to see.  I finally got the boss to let me thin the cat population but only if his wife didn't know what was happening.

Offline bigmacc

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Re: Muley Reports Chelan and Okanogan Counties
« Reply #88 on: November 08, 2019, 05:41:57 PM »

Got back a few days ago from trip number one, went into 3 areas (north valley, parts of 3 different units, stayed put in staging or migration routes all day, did not move around). Glassed up 158 deer total. Seen 22 bucks with 6 of those being 3 point or better. Perspective and comparison from past trips from 15-25 years ago- 389 deer with 64 of those being bucks with 15 of those being 3 point or better.......429 deer with 61 of those being bucks with 22 of those being 3 point or better......499 deer with 56 of those being bucks with 19 of those being 3 point or better.....Now, 25-35 years ago(be prepared)- 789 total with 168 being bucks with 77 being 3 point or better......778 with 193 being bucks with 44 being 3 point or better.......1089 with 204 being bucks with 101 being 2 point or better(points changed with how we counted).......If you really want to be depressed, 35-75 years ago(here is a few, no points counted)- 1045 with 301 being bucks.......1678 with 336 being bucks......1699 with 343 being bucks......2765 with 388 being bucks......3556 with 426 being bucks.... and one of my favorites, 4012 with 579 being bucks. All counts were within the same time frame(4 days, and done at the same timeframe in November, I used similar temperature ranges and weather conditions)...I have another trip planned in a couple weeks. 
« Last Edit: November 09, 2019, 08:52:56 AM by bigmacc »

 


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