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Author Topic: Montana deer populations  (Read 5334 times)

Offline mburrows

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Montana deer populations
« on: March 03, 2023, 07:34:51 AM »
This article is specific to region 7 but likely the same can be said for the rest of the state. I imagine the early snow Montana got didn’t help the deer herd either.

https://blog.eastmans.com/montana-region-7-deer-populations-cut-in-half/

Tough times for mule deer across the west.

Offline 300rum

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Re: Montana deer populations
« Reply #1 on: March 03, 2023, 08:45:08 AM »
That's what I saw last year, poor hunting compared to past years.  Yeah, you still see bucks and lots of deer but it nothing like it was say 5-10 years ago.  I don't think I will go back next year, hate to do it but it needs a few years to rebound.  The doe shooting that is going on should stop for a few years too.   

Offline kramman

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Re: Montana deer populations
« Reply #2 on: March 03, 2023, 11:06:19 AM »
This is exactly what I saw in 2021. No feed, low deer #s compared to other yrs. People shooting does. Will need a few yrs to get back. 1st thing montana should do for the area is get rid of either sex and anterless tags for a few yrs.

Offline Mulie87

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Re: Montana deer populations
« Reply #3 on: March 03, 2023, 11:14:58 AM »
Yep, I agree. This is exactly what I saw in 2021. Had to hunt hard for three days for my wife and I to shoot a 2pt and a 3pt. In past years you wouldn’t even consider anything less that a 4pt and you would see many of them. It will tale several years for them to recover. I’ll just build points until then.

Online bustedoldman

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Re: Montana deer populations
« Reply #4 on: March 03, 2023, 11:53:37 AM »
I ate my doe tag this year, all the guys I chatted with thought I was crazy to do so. Came home with an ok buck, all the respectable ones I saw were all on Private ground or land locked state/blm and not alot of them either. Would Montana even consider going with a APR or even reducing doe tags, it brings in a ton of revenue??

Offline mburrows

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Re: Montana deer populations
« Reply #5 on: March 03, 2023, 12:31:44 PM »
I’m not sure what the answer is but I’d like to at least see them implement a mandatory online reporting system and issue tags to a specific district or region.

Offline vandeman17

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Re: Montana deer populations
« Reply #6 on: March 03, 2023, 01:16:16 PM »
This is one of those scenarios where,  MUCH EASIER SAID THAN DONE, it would be nice if the game department could put some kind of short term harvest limits on areas where the populations are down. It always feels like it takes all these studies, years and years of discussions and proposals before anything can be changed and by that time, its too late.
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Offline gee_unit360

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Re: Montana deer populations
« Reply #7 on: March 03, 2023, 01:31:31 PM »
Saw lots of 4 points last year. Deer all over. It was ridiculous. It was like big buck hunter. Kind of ruins you for Washington…

Offline Stein

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Re: Montana deer populations
« Reply #8 on: March 03, 2023, 02:47:05 PM »
MT absolutely shoots the tar out of their deer and elk, crazy seasons when you compare it to elsewhere.  It would be incredibly difficult to change that, the notion is there are more than enough for all the hunting anyone wants to do.

I do think there is a distinct possibility of there becoming two parts of MT, private land with an overabundance and public with an underabundance.  It seems in many places over objective that the game is getting more scarce anywhere you can get at it without paying $10k.

Offline Karl Blanchard

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Re: Montana deer populations
« Reply #9 on: March 03, 2023, 04:07:05 PM »
Yep, I agree. This is exactly what I saw in 2021. Had to hunt hard for three days for my wife and I to shoot a 2pt and a 3pt. In past years you wouldn’t even consider anything less that a 4pt and you would see many of them. It will tale several years for them to recover. I’ll just build points until then.
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Re: Montana deer populations
« Reply #10 on: March 25, 2023, 05:14:18 PM »
Mule deer hunting is my passion. I feel the deer numbers here in Montana have gone done by 70% in the last four years. I will go out for a few days this fall deer hunting, but I'm shifting to hunting elk. It's gotten to the point something needs to be done before the resource is lost.
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Offline bearpaw

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Re: Montana deer populations
« Reply #11 on: March 25, 2023, 05:24:09 PM »
Region 7 is where we do our Montana hunts. We had a great season last fall but we have some good properties and we don't over hunt them. The local biologist says the herd is still struggling so we are continuing to plan for lower hunter numbers again this year. I would hate to be hunting the BLM and State right now in Region 7, it gets hammered and there's far less deer than a few years ago, so glad we've got good properties.
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Re: Montana deer populations
« Reply #12 on: March 25, 2023, 05:55:37 PM »
Read that Wyoming might lose half of it's pronghorn population due to the current harsh winter. And similar depredations of other wild game species. Apply that throughout the West.

Offline bearpaw

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Re: Montana deer populations
« Reply #13 on: March 25, 2023, 06:02:25 PM »
Read that Wyoming might lose half of it's pronghorn population due to the current harsh winter. And similar depredations of other wild game species. Apply that throughout the West.

 :yeah: Lots of harsh weather in Wyoming. I haven't heard much about Colorado, CO is often hammered in the winter, maybe all the snow is dropping in Utah before it gets to CO?  :chuckle:
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Offline baldopepper

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Re: Montana deer populations
« Reply #14 on: March 25, 2023, 08:57:59 PM »
This thread sure reminds me of the late 50's in Utah. Two hard winters in a row devastated the herds.  Hunters certainly noticed and complained about the lack of animals, but fish and game (as they were called then) was way to slow to react. Rural towns were reluctant to see any changes as the deer season was a major revenue generator for local business, and license revenue from the deer hunt was huge for the fish and game department. Either sex hunting, late special hunts and unlimited oc permits continued into the mid 60s. Many herds were nearly wiped out and the era of draconian restrictions started.  The good old days were over. The herds have obviously rebounted somewhat, but deer hunting is certainly a different game now. I hope the western states don't make the mistake of waiting too long to react to this year's winter losses. No guarantee we won't see another extreme winter next year. 

 

 


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