The bowhunting state that was.
General Topic
Contributors to this thread:
Missouribreaks 22-Jan-19
Ace 22-Jan-19
Timbrhuntr 22-Jan-19
Trial153 22-Jan-19
FullTime 22-Jan-19
Missouribreaks 22-Jan-19
Huntcell 22-Jan-19
Trial153 22-Jan-19
Trial153 22-Jan-19
Scoot 22-Jan-19
PECO 22-Jan-19
Scoot 22-Jan-19
Jaquomo 22-Jan-19
Missouribreaks 22-Jan-19
swampokie 22-Jan-19
Ogoki 22-Jan-19
Jaquomo 22-Jan-19
Missouribreaks 22-Jan-19
JTV 22-Jan-19
Jaquomo 22-Jan-19
RutnStrut 22-Jan-19
JTV 22-Jan-19
jjs 22-Jan-19
Jaquomo 22-Jan-19
stagetek 22-Jan-19
Franklin 22-Jan-19
longbeard 22-Jan-19
jjs 22-Jan-19
swampokie 22-Jan-19
stagetek 22-Jan-19
Franklin 22-Jan-19
Deertick 22-Jan-19
Jack Whitmrie jr 22-Jan-19
elk yinzer 22-Jan-19
stagetek 22-Jan-19
greenmountain 22-Jan-19
Franklin 22-Jan-19
lv2bohunt 22-Jan-19
WYOBIRDDOG 22-Jan-19
PECO 22-Jan-19
WYOBIRDDOG 22-Jan-19
Grunter 22-Jan-19
LBshooter 23-Jan-19
tonyo6302 23-Jan-19
Missouribreaks 23-Jan-19
tobywon 23-Jan-19
GotBowAz 23-Jan-19
tonyo6302 23-Jan-19
Kevin Dill 23-Jan-19
Ogoki 23-Jan-19
GotBowAz 23-Jan-19
Deertick 23-Jan-19
PECO 23-Jan-19
12yards 23-Jan-19
Timbrhuntr 23-Jan-19
Missouribreaks 23-Jan-19
Ace 23-Jan-19
Ogoki 23-Jan-19
Missouribreaks 23-Jan-19
happygolucky 23-Jan-19
Timbrhuntr 23-Jan-19
Missouribreaks 23-Jan-19
happygolucky 23-Jan-19
PECO 23-Jan-19
Franklin 23-Jan-19
Danbow 23-Jan-19
happygolucky 23-Jan-19
Jaquomo 23-Jan-19
EIStone 23-Jan-19
bighorn 23-Jan-19
jjs 23-Jan-19
Missouribreaks 23-Jan-19
Double Creek 23-Jan-19
Missouribreaks 23-Jan-19
Missouribreaks 23-Jan-19
Franklin 23-Jan-19
Danbow 23-Jan-19
Double Creek 23-Jan-19
Jaquomo 23-Jan-19
PECO 23-Jan-19
Jaquomo 23-Jan-19
DL 24-Jan-19
stagetek 24-Jan-19
happygolucky 24-Jan-19
Missouribreaks 24-Jan-19
happygolucky 24-Jan-19
Missouribreaks 24-Jan-19
PECO 24-Jan-19
Drop Tine 24-Jan-19
DanBow 24-Jan-19
Drop Tine 24-Jan-19
Danbow 24-Jan-19
Danbow 24-Jan-19
Franklin 24-Jan-19
Danbow 24-Jan-19
22-Jan-19

Missouribreaks's Link
Serious decline in those who use a bow and arrow during archery season. The decline of real bowhunting and the associated culture continues.

From: Ace
22-Jan-19
Same thing here in CT. 55% of bow kills are with crossbows now. The DEP doesn't care, if they hunt they are mostly Firearm hunters so archers' complaints fall on deaf ears.

Hard to imagine it will ever go back to what it once was, they like the license sales revenue and I think that many Gun hunters quietly resented us having such a long season to ourselves. This exacts a measure of revenge. What I really worry about is all the slobs shooting deer at long range and not seeing them die on the spot. They clearly recover a smaller percentage of animals shot than experienced verticle bow hunters, and I see that getting worse as more try those 100-yard shots. Then the wounding thing will once again rear its ugly head and we'll have to fight the (revitalized) Antis all over again.

From: Timbrhuntr
22-Jan-19
It seems most are quote real archers tuning to crossbows and I doubt very much difference in the percentage of lost animals. Bow kills stayed the same but the choice of weapon changed and blah blah blah ! Most hunters are getting older but don't want to give up their bow hunt why do you think there is more acceptance of crossbows in archery.

From: Trial153
22-Jan-19
Old news. Crossbows are the ruination of bowhunting.

From: FullTime
22-Jan-19
I think golf has a big impact on the number of ALL types of hunting activity. Seriously. For the price of a set of golf clubs, a guy can go outdoors and have a great time with his family, young and old. The same skills it takes to golf in Nevada work EXACTLY the same as in Florida. It doesn't cost much. There is no chance of failure. Success is certain. You can sit around after the activity and brag about stuff with your friends. No risk. Hunting is much different and more risky. But golf is a guaranteed nice outing. You might not ever master it but you can certainly get better and appreciate your good shots...all very cheap. It takes balls to plop down some money to go hunting out of state with a guide you've never met or in a DIY area where you've never been. Let's face it, most people don't have those kinds of stones. Golf is a safe, but sub-par substitution. Maybe we could change the trend by belittling guys without the stones. We're not raising many Jack Nicholson's anymore....were living in a Kenny Chesney world. HAHAHA Sorry if I got too profound there. Ha

22-Jan-19
I am making no judgements, simply passing on some published information for discussion purposes. No sense denying the trends, they are what they are.

From: Huntcell
22-Jan-19
Golf that insidious nemesis of bowhuntings decline. Out of the box review for sure.

Mmnn, I am sure Pat has already putt in place a golf ad ban and a golf stories / hero shots delete policy. Whew!!! Nip that in the bud!

From: Trial153
22-Jan-19

From: Trial153
22-Jan-19

Trial153's Link

From: Scoot
22-Jan-19
Fulltime, you don't golf much, do you? Or at the very least you're not a good golfer who is competitive.

"But golf is a guaranteed nice outing." Umm.... no.

"It doesn't cost much." Couldn't be further from the truth. It can be done in more cost effective ways than others, but golf is dang expensive.

"No risk." I'd guess more people die on a golf course each year than while bowhunting. I don't know this for sure, but I'd guess it's true.

I realize you were trying to make a point, but man you made some seriously flawed statements in that comparison. Golf as the comparison condition doesn't work very well at all, at least in the way you did it.

From: PECO
22-Jan-19
OK no golf, what about Yoga? Buy a mat, a DVD, or maybe go to a few classes. Take your mat with you anywhere.

From: Scoot
22-Jan-19
Yoga maybe, but yoga pants-- no way! Do you know how many strained/sprained necks those things have caused guys to have?!? :)

From: Jaquomo
22-Jan-19
I guess I'm confused. That's not unusual. According to MB's link, the number of hunting participants during archery season hasn't changed since crossbows were legalized. The numbers of deer killed are actually going down year over year.

I don't know about other states but help me understand how this has affected "real" bowhunters in WI. If a guy with a modern compound is in Uncle Wilbur's apple tree and a neighbor is in his oak tree with a Ten Point, does it really matter in the grand scheme?

I'm NOT a proponent of crossbows in archery seasons. But until we can show substantive evidence that crossbows are having a true, documented detrimental effect on BOWhunting opportunity, it's difficult to make a cogent argument to policy-makers.

22-Jan-19
I think that will be a state by state, and specie by specie determination. I believe there is a reason the CBH does not want scoped crossbows for all during general archery seasons, but not being a member I do not know what those reasons are. Until scoped crossbows are made legal for all, the true impact on populations and opportunity are only a guess, perhaps Wisconsin has it right.

From: swampokie
22-Jan-19
When u say real bowhunting...r u including compounds?

From: Ogoki
22-Jan-19
Where i hunt here in Ohio, I have seen a DRASTIC drop in deer numbers , started hunting one farm here in 2007 . Had 23 opportunities to shoot deer that year. This year ,first 12 sits i saw 4 deer. I know how to hunt and play the wind . Anal about it . Below me on creek bottom , I know a guy who use to gun hunt only . He went to crossbow and bragged for years about all the deer he and his buddies were taking . Saw him at the local carryout in December and his first words were "" what happened to all the deer , you seeing much ? " Said he and his buddies use to really stack them up along that creek bottom . He doesn't have a clue what they did to cause the number reduction .

From: Jaquomo
22-Jan-19
Swampokie, if this is directed at my post, yes, I'm including compounds because this debate is about vertical hand-drawn/held bows vs. crossbows. The ship sailed on the argument over trad bows vs. compounds about 40 years ago.

22-Jan-19
For simplicity, I use the P&Y club definition of a bow and bow hunting. It is stated on their website.

From: JTV
22-Jan-19
BOWhunting is about hand drawn/ hand held BOWS ..... crossbows are a whole different contraption and is not BOWhunting .. they may be allowed in BOWhunting/archery seasons, but they are not BOWhunting ..... I hope those damn things come back and bite the DNR's that ok'd them in the ass, the problem there is at what cost to BOWhunters ...

From: Jaquomo
22-Jan-19
JTV, that was my question. Where archery tags aren't limited and the number of hunters hasn't increased during "archery" season (using the term loosely) and the success rate hasn't increased, both the case in WI, what HAS been the cost to bowhunters? I'm asking this because I really want to know.

From: RutnStrut
22-Jan-19
One thing that is a problem here in WI is the success rate on bucks. Crossbow hunters have a higher buck kill success rate than even gun hunters. It's quite simple, it's a superior weapon being used in a season that wasn't meant for superior weapons.

We will have a real mess here when the gun only hunters get riled up enough. They will then demand a shortened season for ALL archery hunters. Not that most of the crossbow guys care who they affect.

From: JTV
22-Jan-19
I do know that here the crossbow kill is almost now equal to vertical bows as of last season... we wont see the 2018 seasons breakdown till the Deer Summary comes out later this year, but state wide, we are right now about 2400 deer killed behind last season (2017), and that can be because of the reduction in bonus county antlerless tags and less counties in the Dec. kill all the does "antlerless gun season" (which I think is a good thing they took some counties out of that) ...the influx into the pre-gun season archery season by gun hunters has been huge, the cross over from a shoulder fired tool to another is easy to make and many now want a piece of the pie of what used to be an unpressured time of the year ...while some may not see that on private lands, it is very evident on our state and federal public lands .... what once was a nice quiet unfettered early archery season, now has these guys tramping around and putting more human presence in the woods/fields ...

From: jjs
22-Jan-19
Advise, come to Wi. Central Forrest public land and hunt the rut, will speak for itself.

From: Jaquomo
22-Jan-19
Jjs, do you mean that more crossbow hunters hunt public land during the rut than BOW hunters? That seems puzzling, because the total number of hunters in the woods during that season hasn't changed, according to the DNR.

From: stagetek
22-Jan-19
Front page of the new WON. The DNR is looking to cut down the crossgun buck kill and perhaps shorten the season.

From: Franklin
22-Jan-19
Now you guys get to experience the pain and agony we all go through on the Wisconsin board. This 'horse' gets beaten to death on a daily basis over there. And the same group of guys keep reviving it so they can beat it to death again.

From: longbeard
22-Jan-19
Ace where are the stats to back up your assertions that show more deer are being wounded by crossbow than any other hunting implements?

From: jjs
22-Jan-19
Jaquomo, x-gun season in Wi is separate but runs along the same season. Put the x-gunners in with the bowhunters using the gun mentality it has change the dynamics, the human pressure and drives has increase. You have to hunt in it to be explained and that would probably be the last time you do it. If you enjoy non-stress hunting you need to own land or you are subjected with the rest of the mob, lived there for 21 yrs and moved across the River where it is still somewhat normal, no baiting and either over 60 or disable for the x-gun and that pressure is on.

From: swampokie
22-Jan-19
That's the reason we went from compounds back to traditional at mcaap. The success rates steadily from 12% with traditional to over 20% when compounds hit the scene. Buck doe ratio and percentage of mature buck went to crap within a few years of the compound being used on the base. We went back to traditional to keep the success rates below 15%. This allows over 1800 hunters to get tags and hunt traditional instead of 1000 with compounds. More opportunity and more money. Everyone wins. I can see the argument ur making with crossbows having a similar effect on success rates.

From: stagetek
22-Jan-19
It needs to be beaten to death again and again until someone listens and looks at the facts and does something about them. The bow season in WI. is being ruined by the inclusion of the crossgun in the bow season. Period ! And that "fact" should be revived over and over again, until it's resolved. Quit following the money and do what needs to be done.

From: Franklin
22-Jan-19
How is it ruining the bow season in Wisconsin....be specific.

From: Deertick
22-Jan-19
Jaq, after asking multiple times ... it seems it just can't be explained. Somehow, they ruined the season. End of story. It's a mystery. But oddly, the solution is known, even though the problem isn't.

22-Jan-19
We fought it here in WV and lost. I said within 5 years crossbow kill would surpass archery kill. I was wrong , it only took 3 years. The only good thing is that it is a different season that runs concurrently with archery season . This way when they say bowhunters are killing too many deer we can show the numbers .

From: elk yinzer
22-Jan-19
Am I wrong or has trad bowhunting culture never been stronger? It's very much the "in" thing to do right now and when the "influencers" do it the sheeple follow.

I am concerned about the segment of hunting society that takes the easy road when it comes to technology. That goes far deeper than this debate. Some will always take the easy way out. A certain segment will tend toward the other extreme. Most will fall in the middle.

Crossbows from the state agency perspective are very much out of Pandora's box. I believe we are better off focusing our pouting sessions on other things at this point honestly.

From: stagetek
22-Jan-19
Phil, it's ruining the season in many ways. First and foremost it isn't a bow ! It is, as was stated up top, a superior weapon that was put into a season that was never intended for superior weapons. The kill will soon, if not already, exceed the kill from the weapons the season was intended for...Bows. The owner of Buck Rub, Kaz made a great presentation last April after the spring hearings, stating the case for a shortened crossgun season. Listen to his speech, you will get all the specifics you need.

22-Jan-19
I like to shoot my traditional bows I can shoot reasonably well most of the time. I hunt with a compound when I can because I feel I can shoot better. I shoot a side lock muzzle loader because I can shoot it well at close range. Others have the latest gear including cross bows. My point? I do what I feel is right for me. It is all about making clean kills or no kills. At the end of the season would you rather think the non hunters hear about the guy who wounded ten deer or the guy who made a clean kill and took the meat home to his family. if we want to keep hunting alive we need to keep on our best conduct and worry less about what tools others use.

From: Franklin
22-Jan-19
I just want to know HOW it is ruining my bowhunting season? I understand that people are against it but how does someone using a crossbow affect me.....I just don`t get it.

How is using ozonics….ARC capable range finders...trail cams....iPhone compatible trail cams not ruining bowhunting also. I`m sure all these items make killing a deer easier.

From: lv2bohunt
22-Jan-19
These threads always remind me how well we have it in Arkansas. We have had crossbows during bow season for 30 years. I have never seen a crossbow hunter in the woods. Our deer hunting has never been better. YMMV.

From: WYOBIRDDOG
22-Jan-19
I don't care what people want to use as long as they are legal! Maybe it might drive the prices of $1500 compounds down. How can kids afford to get started out with gear to go hunting?

From: PECO
22-Jan-19
"I don't care what people want to use as long as they are legal!" Bad idea. Airguns, the ones that launch arrow? Rifles in the general archery season for handicap?

From: WYOBIRDDOG
22-Jan-19
Airguns is a GUN that shoots an arrow, not archery! My cousin is in a chair. Modified a crossbow and put a sip & puff on it so he could get out and hunt. Very limited on the grounds he can get on! I can guarantee that he would not want to use a rifle during archery season.

From: Grunter
22-Jan-19
I will say WI has seen WAY more pressure from x bow hunters. Many gun guys now are hunting with xbows. I sure hope they shorten the xbow season.

From: LBshooter
23-Jan-19
It does amaze me that guys complain about something that doesn't interfere with their hunt. With all the high tech that is in bowhunting and a xbow is the bad guy? I suggest that everyone worry about what they use and enjoy it, worrying about who uses what does you no good. And let's face it, xbows have been around a lot longer then compounds, so who is the new kid on the block. If it gets more guys hunting and supporting hunting then who cares. I hunt public in Illinois and you can't help but see guys with crossbows, and they still walk out of the woods without a deer.

From: tonyo6302
23-Jan-19
Agree, LBshooter.

.. .. . .

.. . .. .

My comments on accuracy from a thread a while back - posted here again;

In the hands of experienced Deer Hunters, the Crossbow definitely is more accurate, with resulting less wounded deer not being found. From 2007 to 2010, I qualified for, and was accepted as a Hunting Member of Suburban Whitetail Management of Northern Virginia. During this time, an old Bowsite Member named Bogunsh?tze was the “Club” President.

We hunted all year-round on Kill Permits in the ‘burbs of Fairfax, Prince William, Arlington, and Loudan Counties in the Northern Virginia area, near Washington D.C. Usually this was on private “big home” properties of at least a 5 acre lot. Some of these mansions were 10 to 15 acres or more. The Deer are still so thick, that Fairfax even opened up the County Parks for Archers.

First, just to start joining the club, you had to have proof of 5 big game bowkills under your belt. Then there was an interview process, and a shooting qualification.

The Club only allowed compounds and crossbows. No Trad gear because of the closeness of hunting near people’s houses, and nearby neighbors could be anti-hunters. You just didn’t want the chance of a wounded deer dying on someone elses property after a bad shot. Seriously, only the most dedicated Trad shooter can consistently hit their target, and those who shoot Trad be honest with yourself. I have a recurve and a self made stick bow, but when I want to hit consistently past 15 yards, I will grab my Hoyt compound. I know my limitations with Trad, and won’t try to bullshit anyone about it.

To qualify with either or both the crossbow and compound, you had to hit a 6 inch diameter target two of three times at 20 and 30 yards with broadheads. If qualifying a crossbow, it could not be supported – you had to shoot it offhand standing.

My last year with the club, 2010, they finally recorded their first crossbow wounded deer that was not found. Up until that year, there had never been a crossbow wounded deer get away. With compounds, the club ran about a 5% or less non-recovery rate. I only stopped hunting with SWMNV due to the traffic on Interstate 95, as I got tired of sitting in traffic jams just to drive to and from the Kill Permit counties.

Crossbows definitely are more deadly in the hands of an experienced hunter that know about shot placement.

Now lets have an honest talk about compound accuracy. Having been required to qualify shooting my Hoyt with SWMNV, I have also had to qualify my archery skills at both the Marine Base at Quantico, VA, and when I lived in Maryland, to apply for special archery hunts there. The Quantico and Maryland qualifications were with field points, at a 12 inch target at 25 yards ( 20 for the Maryland test ). During the qualifications at both Quantico and the state of Maryland, over 50 percent of archers could not hit a 12 inch target at 25 yards with field points, two out of three shots.

My point here, concerning archers and accuracy, is that we can bad mouth gun hunters all day long, slamming them for taking up the crossbow, all the while we don’t’ even weed out those who don’t shoot compounds well enough to join a youth league.

I have shot 3D ranges in California, North Carolina, Kentucky, Virginia, and Maryland, and honestly, we have a lot of poor marksmen in our ranks. Just being honest. And certainly, there are a lot of people that are better shots than I. However, I have had to qualify several times, and have made the cut.

Yea, I know, “Everyone on Bowsite shoots a 300” – Serbian Shark, Bowsite, circa 2008

Flame away if ya want, but these are my experiences from both shooting and observing others since about 1967 or so, and my observations on those that shoot the crossbow. There is a lot less wounding with the crossbow.

Tony

23-Jan-19
Will be interesting when fewer and fewer hunters use a bow and arrow .....and therefore push for scoped crossbow full inclusion in western limited draw elk, moose, sheep, antelope and mule deer hunts. Great longer range weapons in open country. There will be greater impact than in forested mid west CWD zone whitetail deer.

Scoped crossbows may not be a game changer in mid western whitetail hunts where herd reductions are going on and hunters are in decline. Look out western states where game is pressured, already on a limited draw or quota, and more vulnerable in open ranges.

From: tobywon
23-Jan-19
Just from what I've read on state forums, it seems a lot of compound guys have made the switch, or at least have included crossbows in their arsenal. So to me its not just gun hunters taking up the crossbow.

From: GotBowAz
23-Jan-19
Put aside crossbow success and less wounding/fatal hits. I'll preface this by saying I know a LOT of crossbow (Gun Hunters) hunters that wouldn't be in the field during archery seasons otherwise. Crossbows have been in Michigan for several years during archery seasons. The only impact I have seen is pressure changes which brings on a whole new set of challenges in itself. I contribute this to gun hunters going to crossbows putting more folks in the field during archery hunts with gun hunters mentality. Stirring up and scattering deer all over the place coming and going from the field and stands. The big bucks, turn nocturnal very quickly during the archery season and all deer are on high alert during daylight hours. Crossbow hunters (gun Hunters) do not put as much attention into stealth, wind directions etc. etc.. as do archery hunters and so the mindset of most is if its brown its down. Whats worse is they start out new young hunters with that same mind set. Woodsmanship and stealth has been thrown out the window. What used to be natural undisturbed deer doing there thing is now a high alert wired ready to jump nervous deer with their heads looking up in every tree. That natural setting to me was a great part of the experience of being in the woods during archery seasons. I miss it. I arrow'ed a Nice mature Coue's buck Dec. 2018 from a tree stand. Not once was he on high alert, not once did he look up into my tree. He was doing his thing and it was a beautiful sight. BTW, the shot was under 20 yards.

From: tonyo6302
23-Jan-19
"Crossbow hunters (gun Hunters) do not put as much attention into stealth, wind directions etc. etc.. as do archery hunters and so the mindset of most is if its brown its down"

.. . .. .

.. .. . .

How do you know this? It certainly has not been my experience with gun or crossbow hunters, or any hunters that are serious about deerhunting.

From: Kevin Dill
23-Jan-19
I'd like to quote and emphasize Jaq's statement earlier in this thread:

.

"I'm NOT a proponent of crossbows in archery seasons. But until we can show substantive evidence that crossbows are having a true, documented detrimental effect on BOWhunting opportunity, it's difficult to make a cogent argument to policy-makers."

I don't know how much more succinctly it can be said. You/we simply cannot argue for or against policy changes without bringing the weight of proof to the table. Short of that, it's an opinion-based argument and rather easily discounted as such.

The only other thing I would say is that crossbow policy could be changed if their use is shown to have an adverse effect on a specific game population in a given state. My example is Ohio which sees a clear majority of archery kills happening by crossbow hunters. My own eyes tell me I'm seeing a steady increase in crossbow users taking advantage of the rut and therefore putting more archery-season hunters in the woods during the time when our breeding-age bucks are the most vulnerable. If the day comes that our DNR and deer managers decide that too many bucks are being killed as a result of heavy crossbow use in the rut period, the door to crossbow limitations could be opened. The aforementioned sentence is simply speculation, but I think it's worth noting that Ohio still tracks crossbow kills separately from all other bow types.

From: Ogoki
23-Jan-19
Kevin Dill's last paragraph states exactly what I have seen happen here in west central Ohio , where I hunt . I know of several older guys who use to only hunt gun season. They got a crossbow and hunt early season .

From: GotBowAz
23-Jan-19
tonyo6302, I know this from knowing crossbow friends that wouldn't be in the field otherwise. They sit on the edge of a open bean or alfalfa field and kill deer 60 to 80 yards out from shacks on stilts you normally could not shoot a bow out of. if you don't care what quality of deer you kill then just how much woodsmanship does one need? You still have a gun hunt which by they way is in the heat of the rut when occasionally a big buck might come out. But the archery hunts, and the natural experiences when the deer (should ) be calm is ruined.

From: Deertick
23-Jan-19
This sounds like a problem that ought to be able to be stated with empirical data, so in the absence of those, I have to assume that they don't exist.

From: PECO
23-Jan-19
"Will be interesting when fewer and fewer hunters use a bow and arrow .....and therefore push for scoped crossbow full inclusion in western limited draw elk, moose, sheep, antelope and mule deer hunts. Great longer range weapons in open country. There will be greater impact than in forested mid west CWD zone whitetail deer. Scoped crossbows may not be a game changer in mid western whitetail hunts where herd reductions are going on and hunters are in decline. Look out western states where game is pressured, already on a limited draw or quota, and more vulnerable in open ranges." This x100. Even for deer in Colorado, if I am lucky I draw every other year to bow hunt my own property. That is creeping and I did not draw this year, it will be every third year.

From: 12yards
23-Jan-19
MN allows crossbows with a disability/injury and for anyone over 60. The anyone over 60 is fairly new. And I've seen more and more crossbows out there every year. Obviously there are a lot of guys that want it to be easier.

From: Timbrhuntr
23-Jan-19
Now where did I hide that easy button lol

23-Jan-19
Many new hunters will not own or know how to shoot a bow. They will even more diligently push the western states for full scoped crossbow inclusion on all species, an entitlement so to speak. Just wait and see.

From: Ace
23-Jan-19
Evidence. That word has been used in this thread (and others) a bunch of times. Sometimes by people who have already made up their minds, and sometimes by people who are genuinely trying to figure out their position.

The problem is Evidence /Statistics like "Wounding Statistics" would rely on self-reporting, and how accurate do we think that would really be?

The evidence (or actually usually statistics) that we do have is fairly new, and suggests things like:

-In States where Crossbows are considered Bows, the Crossbow take can sometimes exceed the vertical bow take.

-The number of Licenses sold isn't really increasing.

-The number of deer killed isn't really increasing.

If that's all the "evidence" we are presented with, a logical conclusion is that: Crossbows (are pissing off some people but) not negatively affecting the herd.

The problem (as I see it) is that the Anecdotal Evidence suggests something quite different.

Anecdotal Evidence, to be accepted, depends on you having faith in the person observing it, or presenting it. It's an opinion, it's not fact-based, but that doesn't mean it isn't true.

For what it's worth, here is what I have observed.

As a Bowhunter Education Instructor (of a State mandated course to buy a license). I ask every class: "who here intends to primarily hunt with a Crossbow?" We get about 40% of the class rasing their hands. Most of thes people were already Firearms hunters.

When you start bow hunting with a compound or trad bow, you come to it knowing that the learning curve will be steep. You accept that. You have heard from others (including in the class) that it may take years for you to be able to actually kill a deer. You know that learning the skills (how to shoot, how to track, reading sign and a deer's body language, woodsmanship, etc) are critical to success, or at least consistent success.

Some, but very clearly not all gun hunters have accepted this. And SOME, (but very clearly not all) new Crossbow hunters, have accepted this. If you want to be a "one week out of a year" Deer Hunter, you probably will choose a firearm. You know that if you choose a bow, and you don't practice (or scout) at all, that you have a very low likelihood of success. OR, you learn that the hard way, and then you'll either practice and scout or you quit bowhunting,

A crossbow as a hunting implement allows (some) people to come to "bow hunting" with that same attitude. It's THESE people who are the problem, or the potential problem.

Some of you are saying, what's the problem? They are legal, and they are as deserving as the next guy of a deer, and an opportunity. That's true, but what I have seen time and time again is that the Crossbow Hunters who have the Gun Hunter mentality: -1) Take shots that are beyond their capability and that of the weapon. -2) Due to inexperience they are nearly as good at Blood Trailing as experienced Bow Hunters.

Someone who is a decent shot with a rifle can shoot good target groups with a Scoped Crossbow at 60-100 yards with little to no practice. If they take that attitude to the field, bad things happen. Since they have a Gun Hunter's mentality, they don't understand or accept that their arrows fly way slower than the speed of sound, and their target accuracy is in no way reflective of what is possible/ethical on game.

In our Classes, We stress, over and over, that the crossbow is a Short Range Hunting implement. Some accept that fact, but you can see it in their faces, some are thinking: "screw that, I can hit with my crossbow all day long at 75 yards, I can hit with my rifle at 200 yards". Unless they have a decent grasp of physics, they don't understand (or care?) that the deer can take a step or 3 before the arrow arrives. How many gun hunters know what "jumping the string" is?

I used to be a Deer Warden in a suburban town in CT. We ran a bow hunting program on town land to reduce a very high population, and we accepted only experienced bow hunters. We had 2 guys who shot a crossbow (this was with a medical exemption, as it wasn't allowed for everyone at that time). Both of these guys were compound shooters before they hurt their shoulders. What I saw was when they stretched their range beyond 40 yards (we were pressured to take every deer we could), the quality of their hits went down, and the blood trails got longer, and the number of non-recovered deer went up. More Liver hits, and more gut shots. Those deer likely died, but they weren't recovered.

We have all met, and heard of people who shoot a deer and don't recover it and don't seem too upset by that experience. I'd venture a guess that it pisses each and every one of us off. I can tell you this with confidence: More of those guys shoot a crossbow than a vertical bow, and they are always the ones who never came to crossbows from the compound or trad bow world. They expect the deer to die like the ones they shot with a rifle or a shotgun, quickly, and nearby. When that doesn't happen, they don't have the skills and experience (and sometimes the desire) to look until they either find it, or are sure it lived.

Yes, most of my observations are opinion based, anecdotal not provable facts. But I can tell you this, I am certain of them. Guys here who have picked up a crossbow as a cool tool, or because it's so damn cold late season, or because of a bad shoulder or whatever ARE NOT THE PROBLEM. You (they) will hunt just like you always have, no matter what you have in your hands. You respect the animal. People who pick up a crossbow one day, and hunt deer the next day have none of that respect.

I was in Bass Pro a few months ago with my girlfriend buying her some last minute arrows for a hunt we were traveling to out of state. The guy there sold 2 crossbows to the previous 2 customers. After they left I asked them if he thinks they'll practice with them much before they hunt with them. He said "nope, I guarantee, both of those guys will be hunting deer tomorrow with the crossbow they bought today". I asked him if that was typical, he said: "they pretty much all do that".

THOSE people are the problem.

From: Ogoki
23-Jan-19
Prime example of what many on here are referring to.

I have a relative in another state . Had not taken a deer with a bow in 2-3 years. Use to shoot well when younger. Shooting a dated bow with fingers . He just lost his touch and didnt practice ( biggest reason for all his wounds and misses) . He bought a crossbow three summers ago. Was bragging to me over the phone the other day ,that he took 18 deer with it in 3 years. He does get numerous permits , but I don't think that many. Twice last fall he texted me pics of does ,he had just taken , and went as far to say he texted numerous people trying to give them away and wanted someone to tag them . Conservation officers are on to him, but so far they have not got him. He tells me about his close encounters with them. Feed yourself and keep it legal. He is just feeding his ego.

23-Jan-19
And the herd you are discussing is mid western whitetail deer, they are plentiful in most areas and private land sanctuaries abound. Try drawing a Wisconsin bear tag in the future, especially after this weeks announcement. I bet the archery kill for turkeys will go up, and they are already on a drawing. Too many here have a box blind midwestern whitetail deer mentality, and seem to forget about all the other species, and areas.

And, almost every animal in the west is already on some sort of limited draw or quota.

For the diseased midwestern whitetail deer herd I would suggest one longer season, use any weapon including guns. Get the numbers in check where game managers deem necessary.

Do the bowhunter clubs in the west want scoped crossbows for all hunters, and all species, during general archery seasons, why, why not? Or, are hunters ok with scoped crossbows for all during archery seasons as long as they do not come to their states and limited drawings? I have news for you, the scoped crossbowers will be coming west in force as the new midwestern archery season generation largely do not own bows, or know how to shoot them. They will want elk, mule deer, antelope, sheep, moose, bear, lion etc with their long range scoped crossbows.

From: happygolucky
23-Jan-19
What is very interesting though in WI is that the average kill of archery hunters and xbows combined over the 4 year period xbows have been allowed by all has been lower than in the years prior to xbows being allowed. One year would be a fluke perhaps. Would 4 years be a fluke? 2018 numbers combined are even lower than in other years and that is coming off a mild winter with more antlerless tags available.

From: Timbrhuntr
23-Jan-19
sshhh you'll mess with anecdotal evidence that suits me ha ha ha

23-Jan-19
CWD has hunters less enthusiastic in killing multiple deer, and excess deer are not easy to give away. Registration has changed, as has baiting in many areas, wolves hamper some northern herds. Much more than just scoped crossbows to consider. Hunter interest is less in some areas of Wisconsin and Michigan ( camps closing up) but many still buy a tag. Not near the hunters going north. Lots to consider. I doubt if Colorado and Montana open up archery elk and mule deer for all hunters with scoped crossbows the elk and mule deer kill will go down..... and opportunity remain the same. I simply seriously doubt it.

From: happygolucky
23-Jan-19
I own land in both northern WI and MI and love hunting in both. Bowhunting (I shoot a compound) is alive and well even with xbows being allowed and all the doom and gloom being written by the OP. It is crazy how the kill rate has actually decreased even with the weapon that was going to decimate the herd. CWD has scared nobody in northern WI or in the UP of MI. The same drivel is posted ad nauseum across many different message boards by the OP.

From: PECO
23-Jan-19
The kill numbers decreased, as stated by many above, because the crossgun hunters running around willy nilly screwing up the hunt for the real bow hunters.

From: Franklin
23-Jan-19
Didn`t take long for 'Misery Breaks' to crack out his CWD drivel....lmao. Too predictable.

It`s a coin toss depending on what day it is...."Crossbows are evil" or "CWD will be the end of all deer hunting".....you really need some new material.

From: Danbow
23-Jan-19
Wisconsin's NRB met today in Madison the state capital to discuss 7 options to shorten cross bow season to reduce buck kill by 6000 to 7000 animals. Won't affect 65 and older or disabilities

From: happygolucky
23-Jan-19
Franklin, don't forget his "bowhunting is dead" mantra too. Oh to be so miserable in life.

From: Jaquomo
23-Jan-19
Wyoming allows scoped crossbows during archery season. I KNEW there was a reason why the hunting sucks in that state. Just having them in the field ruined my last hunt there and I didn't even know it. In fact, I never saw anyone hunting with one so those evil crossbow guys must slink around in the dark of night, wreaking mayhem wherever their dark hearts take them.

From: EIStone
23-Jan-19
I see golfsite.com in the future

From: bighorn
23-Jan-19
Nothing against crossbows but a guy at work and his four buddies go to wyoming The last two yrs they all filled there tags all shooting out of the window or off roads with crossbows. Yrs before they were lucky to get 1-2 or none. In wis. they should just allow one buck a year with any weapon.

From: jjs
23-Jan-19
Ace x2.

23-Jan-19
Why is the CBH against crossbow inclusion for all in general archery seasons, or did that change in Colorado?

From: Double Creek
23-Jan-19
In the southeast, game departments are begging people to kill deer and lower the numbers. With a declining hunter population, don’t expect to ever see a decrease in opportunities. They are trying everything they can just to get bodies in the woods.

The older I get, the less I care about what the next guy is doing. Everyone has their own agenda and should spend their limited amount of time however they best enjoy it.

We need all the hunters we can get. Open your minds and try some different methods. Start with traditional gear. It will show you how foolish this anti Xbox argument is.

23-Jan-19

23-Jan-19
There are too many whitetail deer in many, many areas. Where possible, they should expand gun, bow, scoped crossbow, antlerless, and tribal opportunities in these areas. Elk are over objective in some areas too, should scoped crossbows be fully included in these archery seasons too?

From: Franklin
23-Jan-19
Thanks 'happy'.....I knew I forgot one...lol

From: Danbow
23-Jan-19
Sounds like alot of you on Bowsite are contemplating buying a crossbow or maybe already have. Compounds with 85 percent letoff isn't easy enough. Just point flip off the safety and shoot.

From: Double Creek
23-Jan-19
If someone is dumb enough to lug an Xbox up and down the elk mountains, and say go for it.

From: Jaquomo
23-Jan-19
CBA is againt crossbows in general archery seasons for a number of reasons. In September we already have archers hunting 10 species, rifle deer, rifle bear, rifle elk, muzzleloader deer, elk, bear and moose, plus grouse hunters and hordes of urban recreationalists of all stripes. The woods are a mess and we don't have the surplus of animals that some other states have.

Also, all deer licenses are limited draw, as are many elk licenses. Point creep is a big problem for all limited species tags. Rifle (crossbow) hunters competing for a limited number of tags will exacerbate the mess. It's less about the weapon itself, and more about the potential for exponentially more pressure on the resource.

You can't compare Colorado with a state like Wyoming where nonresidents are so limited in opportunity, bowhunters can also rifle hunt on the same license, resident hunters are relatively few compared to other states. Colorado has half as many elk hunters as the TOTAL population of the entire state of Wyoming.

From: PECO
23-Jan-19
Jaq, are you for or against full inclusion of crossbows in the general archery season in Colorado?

From: Jaquomo
23-Jan-19
PECO, Absolutely NOT.

But... in a state that has a four month season with something like a deer-a-day limit, unlimited OTC licenses, largely private land hunting out of trees or blinds, and a deer overpopulation problem, crossbows in "archery" seasons are a different situation. Every state has their own variables to consider.

From: DL
24-Jan-19
Has anyone considered age as the reason for fewer bowhunters? When I’ve been at the archery range the vast majority are over 50. Same can be said for rifle hunting. Not a lot of recruitment of younger hunters like their was decades ago. I grew up in a town of 1400 in California. When they had hunters safety course there would be around 30 kids every year.

From: stagetek
24-Jan-19
Think about this...For many years crossguns in WI. were considered weapons that allowed handicapped individuals to participate in the archery season. The reason being obvious. I knew of no one that challenged that. Now, a few short years later, they have become the weapon of choice in the archery season. For those of you that keep asking how that affects me, look past your 40 acres and see the big picture. The possibility of reduced buck tags, shortened seasons, doe only seasons and the elimination of the archery season as we've known it. Sadly, perhaps some, or all of that will have to happen before you realize...how crossguns affect you !

From: happygolucky
24-Jan-19
stagetek, luckily WI created a separate season for xbows which can be changed. It looks like their season is about to be shortened. I still am enamored though that the combined xbow/archery kill numbers over the last 4 years since xbows were added for all is less than the archery only numbers in the 4 years prior. The devastation people expected in WI has not happened. Perhaps it is still coming. With the separate season, changes can be made. MI does not allow xbows in the UP in late season. They are not even allowed as a lesser weapon in the smoke pole season in the UP. A similar change could be coming to WI. But, right now, they've been a non-factor to date.

24-Jan-19
You cannot blame one weapon on any of the macro trends in hunting success, hunter numbers, or hunter recruitment. It is much more complicated than what can be seen on one person's forty from their box blind. And, there are now scoped crossbows in midwestern species with a limited draw such as bear, turkeys and in deer with antlerless permits. Point creep is insidious and what so many fear in the west such as Colorado. So many here have a CWD infested whitetail deer limited insight.

From: happygolucky
24-Jan-19
So many here have a CWD infested whitetail deer limited insight.

I thought this thread was about WI? I read the OP and it sure looked like that or is this just another in your long list of xbow threads and "bowhunting is dead" threads? You need to add to your playlist.

24-Jan-19
Posted on another forum. Not written by me, but is a good perspective beyond the box blind vision. Please see below.

Trapper posted........... With the pending setting of the length of the WI crossbow season there are clearly opinions on all sides of the discussion but in order to understand, you need to first know WHO all the sides are. They are all the hunters trying to kill a buck so that means, Bowhunters, Crossbow hunters, Gun deer hunters and Muzzle loader deer hunters all care and yes, if All are honest, the prime objective to killing a buck (and hopefully a big one). Deer hunting is as much a "Buck-centric" event as it has ever been. For as long as deer seasons have bet set, weapons efficiency and success rates have been the primary metrics used to determine how much time is allowed per weapon and why the archery deer season is longer than the gun deer season but in the end, hunters want equity in their potential success based on the projectile they sling at that buck since those bucks are a limited resource.

With 4 years of data gathering for the crossbow deer hunter collected since its inaugural season in 2014 and decades of the same usage and buck kill success rates for bow and gun deer hunters already long known, all members of the deer hunting community are able to see for themselves and understand just how efficient and successful each weapons type has been and this success data is being used to set the duration for the crossbow deer season. The most recent data collected during the 2018 deer seasons shows that the most efficient and successful buck killer per license sold is the crossbow deer hunter with a buck kill success rate of about 30%, The next most successful buck killing weapons type per license sold is the gun deer hunter at about 22% and the archery deer hunter at about 15% success at bringing home a buck. That means the crossbow hunter has nearly double the success killing a buck compared to bowhunters and the Crossbowers success is even higher than the gun deer hunter. Gun deer hunters, certainly care because they go last after the bowhunters and the crossbow hunters have removed many bucks from the landscape. The lonely Muzzle loader hunter is dead last and is made up of guys with a unfilled gun-buck tag after the gun deer season when there are the fewest possible bucks on the landscape.

Due to the wisdom of those involved with creating the separate crossbow deer season, we are able to capture and drill down and see not only who but when these bucks are being taken out of play for every weapons type. This separation of seasons was a sticking point with some that wanted the crossbow season rolled into the archery deer season hoping to ride the coat tails of protection of an archery season that has been around since the 1930's but the bowhunting community saw what transpired in other states and did not want to be punished or penalized because of the successes of the crossbow deer hunter (and successful they are) So those that were thinking of the future were smart to do so. Speaking of the future (which comes at us far faster than we ever anticipate and surprises us yearly with next years new weapons release) the rapid advances of the modern crossbow which is now at the doorstep of 500+ feet per second. (Scoryped boasts 480 FPS in 2019). Nobody can argue that the crossbows of 2025 will make today's crossbows look like relics and the crossbows of 2035 will have advanced in power, speed and range to a level nobody thinks possible today. Meanwhile, the bowhunter will always be limited in power and range by his own strength to pull back whatever peak weight he is strong enough to draw with a deer at spitting distance. That physical strength limitation is what keeps bowhunters throttled the lowest buck kill success rate of all weapons. And while we are speaking of the future, additional weapons that will want placement in established seasos already exist but more will follow. Once such weapon is the pneumatic powered, broadhead tipped, arrow slinging Crossman "Airbow". Despite it being an air rifle that allows the user to muzzle load a hunting arrow, the maker is lobbying for its inclusion in archery deer season in every state because they were clever enough to include "bow" in the name and because it propels an arrow. The state's decision makers will be pestered until they are forced to find a home for this and other weapons we haven't even realized yet but since the "Airbow" is here and already knocking on the door, there will be those wanting a faster and easier weapon with far greater range to remove more bucks from the swamps and oak ridges of WI. Because the "Airbow" propels a broadhead tipped arrow and has a stock, trigger, safety and scoped sights and can be shot from a rest and will be easy to use by kids and women the elderly and disabled and increase participation and increase license sales and money the DNR can certainly use, the crossbow community will not doubt trip over themselves to welcome the "Airbow" into their season because these are the exact claims they made as they tried to gain inclusion into the WI archery seer season. But dont bet on crossbowers being so inviting. They will likely object, claiming that it is not fair, too powerful, too easy and a different weapon than what they limit themselves to. They will not want to be punished for the success rate of a clearly superior weapon that would be included in "their" season. Bowhunters will of course call them hypocrites but just think, if the state had made the error of lumping crossbows into the WI archery deer season, the "Airbow" could just as easily be lumped into the "Archery" deer season. That is why the forward thinking folks back in 2014 fought to keep crossbows separate from a human powered bow and arrow season.

With that said, we currently have a human powered season in which bowhunters limit themselves in effectiveness by choice in using a weapon that restricts their range and killing potential based on their own human strength that has been documented as having the lowest buck kill success rate of all the weapons types and now thanks to the separate crossbow season we have a stored energy, shoulder discharged and powerful weapon with a demonstrated buck killing success rate double that of bowhunters and the gun hunting community is looking on from the sidelines knowing they are no longer the most lethal buck killers in the woods which was the reason the gun deer season is shortest of all the seasons and last to hit the woods.

These are the reasons the Natural Resources Board has tasked the DNR with creating a scope statement and recommendations for a crossbow season duration that is shorter than it was during the data gathering years but still, far longer than the gun deer season. This is a future thinking move on their part with the goal of equity in take of bucks which drives license sales in the cheese state. It also seeks to bring back those folks that are leaving the archery and the gun deer season because the data shows that since the creation of the separate crossbow season, license sale for bowhunters and gun deer hunters have dropped. Even before the data was collected, buck hunters knew there best chance to kill a buck was with a crossbow and the long season during the data gathering years so they stopped buying an archery and/or gun deer license and sales and revenue to the Dept. had declined.

The season setting being undertaken by the NRB will result in a crossbow season in WI that is still quite long (certainly longer than the gun deer season despite the crossbow having a buck killing success rate higher than their lead bullet slinging cousins) and with less days than the archery deer season and will seek to establish an equity in the success rates of all the weapons types in WI.

From: PECO
24-Jan-19
"That means the crossbow hunter has nearly double the success killing a buck compared to bowhunters and the Crossbowers success is even higher than the gun deer hunter. "

From: Drop Tine
24-Jan-19
But yet the overall harvest in WI. all weapons combined is stagnant and even in slight decline due to lower license sales.

Also in 2011 -2013 the years leading up to the crossbow season “bowhunters” killed 44k, 45k, and 41k bucks. There was no alarm then going off that we need to do something. It was a grand old time on the WI. landscape. Crossbow hunters kill 38k and the sky is falling.

What these purists don’t understand is we already don’t kill enough deer and we have to put up with early antlerless gun seasons in October and the Holiday gun hunts in December. Reducing the kill will bring on even more special gun seasons to reduce the herd and bring it to management goals.

From: DanBow
24-Jan-19
Drop tine what the purists understand is that killing bucks isn`t the way to reduce the heard. Remember earn a buck?

From: Drop Tine
24-Jan-19
Yes I remember it well. While it was abused it was a great tool for building a older age class of bucks in WI.

Also a doe can only conceive once a year but a single buck can breed several doe’s. Social acceptance is to control doe numbers but it makes more sense to control the buck numbers.

From: Danbow
24-Jan-19
Well the bright side of this for the crossbow guys is they can pay the extra i believe $3.00 and hunt with a bow when crossbow season would be closed.

From: Danbow
24-Jan-19
Well the bright side of this for the crossbow guys is they can pay the extra i believe $3.00 and hunt with a bow when crossbow season would be closed.

From: Franklin
24-Jan-19
The problem I had with EAB was they never kept statistics on how many button bucks were killed as the "antlerless deer" needed to get their buck tag.

From: Danbow
24-Jan-19
Flawed system and i hated it but it did make you shoot does or buck fawns as stated. Same with ag tags indiscriminate shooting of anterless deer. They didn't want to no how many would have been a un popular problem they didn't want to deal with. They like to tinker with the seasons kinda learn as they go. Wisconsin is nowhere near the deer mecca of the late 90s and early 2000s

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