Ohio deer count

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jims

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I just saw that nearly 200,000 deer were taken this last season. Roughly equal between bow kill and firearms. It appears the largest scoring deer were taken with bows. That might make sense in that the bow season is about 4 months long and starts earlier. The firearm seasons are much less and generally after the rut.
I may well have to break out my bow again. Have not had time to use it for years. Also the weather is generally milder during the first 6 weeks of bow season.
Is that similar to what many of you have found in your States or is it more an Ohio thing?
 

HC

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Hey neighbor (Indiana), I have taken most all of my trophy bucks with bow in early season.
 

retrieverman

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I hunt NW Oklahoma and have killed 4 bucks over 170”, and 3 were killed with a crossbow and one with a muzzleloader. I find it easier to pattern a buck when they’re still bachelored up. Ironically, the buck I killed this year was a “lone ranger“ and always traveled alone. That the first time I’ve definitively seen that in my nearly 40 years of deer hunting.
I haven’t looked at the harvest data break down for Oklahoma, but I feel like the it will follow the Ohio trend in that the largest bucks are taken with archery tackle.
 

deermanok

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I've seen more bucks during the archery season too. (Oklahoma)
From about Halloween through Veteran's Day. I think that's about the peak time, at least in my own hunting experience.
 

Muley Hunter

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In my state the archery season is the month of Sept. Long before the rut. The rifle hunters get the rut in the later seasons but they're only 5-9 days long. Muzzleloader is in the middle of Sept for 9days. So muzzy and bow hunters hunt together.

Colorado is geared towards elk. The elk rut is in Sept. Deer is late Nov-Dec.
 

Bkusch53

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Texas Game Warden said a lot of nice bucks are killed during youth weekend which is the last weekend of Sept and I see more bucks moving the 2 weeks after that so I would say Texas is about the same.
 

Pathfinder60

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I just saw that nearly 200,000 deer were taken this last season. Roughly equal between bow kill and firearms. It appears the largest scoring deer were taken with bows. That might make sense in that the bow season is about 4 months long and starts earlier. The firearm seasons are much less and generally after the rut.
I may well have to break out my bow again. Have not had time to use it for years. Also the weather is generally milder during the first 6 weeks of bow season.
Is that similar to what many of you have found in your States or is it more an Ohio thing?
I just got back into deer hunting here in Ohio after a many years hiatus due to the loss of hunting grounds. This year's deer gun season opening day was marred by foul, wet, rainy windy weather. Many didn't go afield that otherwise would have. I'm sure that affected the numbers. I'm also a bow hunter and I can say beyond a doubt I saw more deer moving in October when we got access to the farm we're hunting now than in December and January. The deer's patterns changed a great deal after all the crops came off. I hunt over corn, soybean and hay fields and by December we stopped seeing them in the evening where we did just a month prior. We'll be doing some scouting in the spring to establish patterns and by the opening day of archery season I plan to be prepared. I definitely think a hunters chances improved greatly during archery season so if I were you, I'd dig that bow out knock the dust off of it, get a good ground blind and get out there!
 

jcnull2305

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I think there were a lot more people afield in 2020, too. Funny thing is, we were seeing much fewer dear during the gun season in Vinton county. Much Fewer. I have a friend who's an ODNR Game Warden. He told me they had a lot more poaching cases in 2020. too. Chalk it up to more COVID news.

How is scouting in spring going to help you in hunting season?
I tend to scout year round. Whitetails (at least Ohio Whitetails) are creatures of habit, and seem to use the same trails repeatedly. The bucks change their work hours during the rut, but you'll see them haunting the same places.
 

Muley Hunter

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I'd love to scout year around but winter in the mountains is ugly. The elk are on the winter range, so winter scouting would be no help. I scout from when the elk go back up high until they come down. Watching them migrate is fun.
 

Pathfinder60

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How is scouting in spring going to help you in hunting season?
Because archery season had already began when we gained access to the farm. Plus there was an issue with the patriarch of the family selling a hunting lease to a pair of Amish brothers in exchange for work that they did to his house...and he failed to tell the his kids of this deal and it was his kids that gave my family hunting access. I came out to my tree stand one day and found a felt hat that Amish wear around here and I knew someone was sending me a message. It was not long till I met the younger of the two and found out about this whole deal he and his brother made with the Dad. I backed away and brought the issue to his kids and the shit hit the fan. It seems the old man has a habit of making deals with people for products of the farm for money and he doesn't do any of the work and he doesn't share the money. He takes advantage of his kids and this was the straw that broke the camel's back. The scene between the father and his kids was quite heated I was told but ultimately beneficial because old wounds that had long laid festering under the surface were laid bare and now the healing can begin. Because of all this I don't have a clear image if the boundaries of the hunting grounds because I never got the opportunity to scout it out to begin with. And from here on out there will be no Amish hunting on this farm...ever. They have a habit of acting like locusts and decimating an area of game. Sorry about the long winded explanation but it's a complicated situation.
 

jims

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I have Amish that live across the road from my farm. I know they take a large number of deer but in part that is because they have a large number of children and many of the boys hunt. There are two or three families and they all have many children/hunters. I am not saying they take more than they are allowed. just between them they get a lot. I do not think bucks mean much to them. I suspect it is to help feed their families.
Just an example. A friend of mine had an Amish guy doing some light work for him. During the conversation he mentioned he had 8 grandkids. He asked the Amish fellow, he had over 100. He had as I recall 12 or 13 kids and they must have all averaged about 8 apiece to get that amount.
Now my mother came from a family of 16 and my dad a family of 10 but those days are past for most of us, oh and we are not Amish.
 

Pathfinder60

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I have Amish that live across the road from my farm. I know they take a large number of deer but in part that is because they have a large number of children and many of the boys hunt. There are two or three families and they all have many children/hunters. I am not saying they take more than they are allowed. just between them they get a lot. I do not think bucks mean much to them. I suspect it is to help feed their families.
Just an example. A friend of mine had an Amish guy doing some light work for him. During the conversation he mentioned he had 8 grandkids. He asked the Amish fellow, he had over 100. He had as I recall 12 or 13 kids and they must have all averaged about 8 apiece to get that amount.
Now my mother came from a family of 16 and my dad a family of 10 but those days are past for most of us, oh and we are not Amish.
And that is precisely why they can be very hard on a game population... sheer numbers, no deer is off limits in regards to age, sex or size. The same is true for rabbits and squirrels. They have a lot of mouths to feed. I'm not saying the take game illegally...it's just that they don't seem to care about selectively harvesting animals to maintain a healthy herd.
 

D55

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I also hunt Ohio and live here and have only hunted private for a good number of years and have been successful. I will say that during gun season I actually saw more deer movement on public land due to hunters moving in and out of the woods. I wouldn't hunt any of the more popular public areas but have considered going to a couple of spots around me that get minimal gun season pressure. Also one may do a search for US Government land as it will not often be posted as such and is actually part of the public hunting areas available. There was a 40acre little block that butted up to a private property I used to hunt on the platte map it showed up US Gov.
 
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