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Lowering the buck limit in Wv thoughts
Wv has had a push to lower the buck limits for the past several years . Right now you can kill 3 bucks total a year except in the 4 counties that are archery only and they are a 1 buck limit. Of course that is where the majority of out trophy bucks are .
Who on here thinks that lowering the limit from 3 to 2 bucks total a year would help in growing a more mature herd and help in balancing the buck to doe ratio. Wv hunters kill more bucks than doe each year.
Me personally would like to see a 1 buck limit or at least antler restrictions on a second buck.
Also if you are from a state with lower limits than 3 , do you like it or would you rather see your limit raised?
The Wv game commission will be voting on this issue later this summer so your input would be appreciated.
times have changed the younger generation no longer hunts for food they hunt for trophies. look at the fairly new gutless methods I mean damn they don't even want blood on their hands. to answer your question the answer is yes 1 buck per year unless the area has a low herd population that needs doe's to rebuild herd #s then possibly 2 buck's. I personally kill 12 or more doe's a year & a good buck every 2 or 3 years. I don't care to eat rutted up old buck's & am almost to the point of just admiring them & just killing does but every few years I got to show them youngins I still got it
Of course killing fewer will help over time
That depends on how many hunters shoot 3 a year. If only maybe 100 3rd bucks are taken a year throughout the state then lowering from 3 to 2 won’t do too much to help. Now 3 to 1 is another story.
Only 1 buck here in fact for the most part only 1 deer of any sex per year. I wish we had the populations to be able to kill multiple deer but it’s just not feasible. As far as trophy quality killing fewer bucks per year means more of the bucks growing older so that should help in the long run.
Only 1 buck in a archery only zone but 3 bucks everywhere else? That is a crazy policy. The archery only areas are the usually the heaviest people populated areas of a state and bags limits are usually increased just because a bow has a low % success rate.
I can`t see a reason why any more than 2 bucks is needed. As whether people like it or not 'big horns' attract younger hunters which is what we need.
Indiana went from 2 to a one buck rule quite a few years back... it helped immensely, we now have an older class of bucks and a stronger rut, guys stop and think about shooting the babies now, it they do, they are done for bucks .. ... I love the OBR ... now if Indiana will continue backing off the antlerless, it will be even better ..
What is unknown by those that are posting is that only 18% or so of hunters kill a second buck. And, 1-2% only kill a third buck in WV. Not so crazy a policy when you consider the revenue it creates and, the the negligible impact it has on growing bigger antlers.
Big game management is a compromise in every state. WV is no different. There is no huge demand for NR's wanting to hunt most of the state except for the opportunity to see a lot of deer. And, with WV having only bear, deer, and turkeys considered as big game, there isn't a huge draw with the stigma of those species. What also has to be considered is the job that is being done by the DNR to work with what they have.
WV has the largest bow only hunting area in the lower 48 states. There are some real bruisers here. However, it is hard hunting in very steep and rough ground. So, most people choose other states to hunt big deer in.
Anyways, it is easy to assume that the management is terrible. Until you consider the variables that directs the DNR. With what they have to work with, I personally think it would be hard to improve on. Low license cost, access to the hundreds of thousands of acres of bow only management, and areas with deer galore. I think it would be hard to do a better job.
The big improvement comes in a one buck limit. The young bucks get a pass from a lot of guys when you have a one buck limit. Otherwise the mentality is “ I will shoot this youngster for meat and then see if I can kill a bigger one”
1 buck and minimum 3 pts on one side will help a real lot!! Shawn
How about some ideas on how to make up the loss in revenue with the decrease in tags being sold? Saying what would grow bigger deer like you have figured something out that the DNR doesn't know isn't solving any issue. Just recites what everyone knows already.
Franklin, It is the exact opposite of what you are thinking. The archery only areas are the least populated counties in the state. Rough country for sure. I grew up in northern WV and killed a ton of deer in the 80's. That was a different time. No coyotes and I only saw one bear. I left in 91 to join the military and every time I went back I saw the changes. I grew up in a paradise but it isnt the same so I don't go back. I told my dad 10 years ago to quit shooting deer and shoot coyotes and bear year round. He won't listen because he's old. He see's more deer here at my house in SD in one day than he does all year there and he lives in the woods. It's crazy. They have a major predator problem. They should have an earn a buck program. Bring us 5 dead coyotes or a dead bear and we'll give you a deer tag.
I was going to suggest some type of an Earn A Buck (EAB) program too. Maryland has EAB and alot of deer. WRT to lowering the buck limit....it looks like not too many folks kill the 3rd deer. That seems to be common where not alot of folks kill the 2nd and 3rd deer depending on the season lengths and state. IMO that is a feel good thing for someone. Likewise, I'm not a fan of mandatory APR's either. I'd lean towards quota's for targeted control of hunter/harvest numbers. IMO Iowa and Kansas seem to do a good job in that area.
In KY it is 1 buck and 4 does (I think). All one price. I live in TN but have land and hunt in KY. Big difference in quality of bucks in the 2 states. I’m sure some of it is genetic but I have to believe the restricted buck harvest in KY is a factor as well.
WV is strange in that it has so many different habitats. They need to divide the state up into different units and manage them individually. Big woods down south is way different than the ohio river valley with all the farmland.
In the county in Texas where I live, you can take 3 bucks/year. We limit people to 1 buck on our ranch and 3 does. I think it helps a lot.
That said, even with those rules it is rare that we kill even 1.5 as many does as bucks. Many people still just want to kill a buck
Considering the amount of WV plates you see hunting Ohio..its seems like hunter satisfaction back home might not be the highest. Maybe some self introspection is in order.
Trial, exactly. Like I said, it was paradise when I was growing up but there's a reason I've lived in South Dakota for the last 20 years. They should close the deer season for two years and make everyone hunt coyotes and bears.
or is the hunting there is so good the tags are already filled early in the season and they are looking for someplace else to spend time afield?
If it’s the lost revenue that’s the issue I pay around 3x as much for my deer tag in Colorado as I am seeing a res paying on the WV site.
I figure the reason Wv hunters are hunting the neighbouring states is they are after a more mature buck . At least that is the reason the people I know travel to Ohio and Kentucky to hunt deer.
Oklahoma went from 3 bucks to 2. Some complained at first but those were mainly the guys who won't shoot does. They wanted a buck for archery, muzzleloader and rifle. And as mentioned above the younger bucks got hit early to get something in the freezer. I think this is where the term "cull buck" originated (excuse to shoot).
If Oklahoma wanted to help the trophy potential they would get rifle season away from the rut but the management goal here is opportunity. A lot of times our wildlife department has it's hands tied by the legislature who forces ridiculous regulations on them in the best interest of big landowners, many of which are not residents of the state.
When did Oklahoma go from 3 bucks to 2 and do you feel it has helped ?
KS is a 1 buck state. There were a couple of years that you could buy a "left over tag" and shoot 2 bucks. Same as above; people shot a young one (one that they normally would pass) with their first tag and then kept hunting for a big one with their second. If I were interested in producing an older age class of bucks then I think 1 buck tag is a good step in the right direction. I feel that much of what Lost Arra said about OK pertains to KS also. No need to repeat it.
We have a 1 buck rule in MN, but with party hunting we still have very few mature bucks around. I would say a 1 buck rule would make WV amazing.
I'd guess that the thing you can't calculate is how many guys who DO shoot a second buck, but don't shoot a 3rd buck because they're holding out for a big one, would stop shooting the 2nd buck so they could hold out for a big one with their second tag instead of their 3rd tag if the limit went from 3 to 2.
If 18% of hunters shoot a second buck and 1-2% shoot a 3rd, there's room for up to, potentially, a 20% reduction in the buck kill... that's a lot. If the second buck kill % dropped to what the 3rd buck kill % is or even slightly higher, it'd also be a large reduction.
I figured like others, in NY and many other states you get what you get for one price. We can kill two buck and depending on where you hunt up to unlimited does. I hunt a bow only area and you can keep shooting does as long as you bring your does head in and have it aged. We have many areas that have gone to a 3pt minimum one side and not only has it helped with age class but increased the overall quality of the herd. Also WV since when does any DNR have a clue what to do to manage a deer herd? Shawn
As a resident, I would like to see a one buck limit. However, almost all the people I know typically only shoot one buck per year (coupled with a few does for the freezer). I would also really like to see antler restrictions, but I can’t imagine telling a kid they can’t shoot a spike or small buck their first (or second, etc) time out. I’m with M.P., one (any) buck, second has to have restrictions. That would be a step in the right direction. Ohio, which is a mile from where I hunt (separated by a river) is a night and day difference as far as size goes.
Shawn, I leave the management decisions to the management professionals. Not deer hunters.
We are one of the few states that you can come and hunt deer for a low cost, kill quite a few, have the largest bow only area in the Continental US, has multiple weapons opportunity's, and have deer out the EARS. Also, to anyone that thinks this is a one sided debate, just go to facebook, type in WV big bucks and look at the caliber of deer that live here. STATEWIDE. Yes the bow only area has more of them then any where else. But, that would hold true in Iowa too.
WV, I agree that you do have great deer. I have hunted WV myself and may go back this year. It's just most states DNR really have no clue on managing their deer herds, professional or not. Shawn
Shawn, there is always a reason, force, influence, etc.... that makes easy decisions hard. In any profession. Wildlife and resource management being one of the most susceptible.
M.P. : I don't remember when the change went into effect but I would guess 8-10 years ago. The harvest data shows fewer young bucks being killed but I don't know the overall influence of the 2 buck rule. A lot of credit being given to a "Let 'em grow" promotion by the wildlife department to encourage people to not shoot the buttons or 1 1/2 yr old bucks.
That's good the wildlife department is promoting let em grow. Our director is for lowering the limit but we have a few commissioners that have been against it for years. It's funny that one of the commissioners is from a district that only allows a 1 buck limit .he has seen the big bucks produced in the archery only 1 buck areas but has fought lowering statewide .
Do yall know the reason the state has lowered your limits ? Did they promote it for a healthier herd or for more interest in gaining license buyers by having more mature bucks ? What was the reason for lowering the limit ?
WV, I agree with Shawn. My MN DNR Wildlife, I swear, hate deer. The only thing they are concerned with is keeping numbers down. They have no interest in managing for quality or managing private land differently than public land (which should be done). I think some DNRs are much better. Some seem to like and manage for more quality hunting and populations. But I don't live in those states so don't know for sure.
A little more info should be supplied here as well. WV was overrun with deer not too long ago - not for sure of the exact years but somewhere around 2008- 2010 - some reports claimed we had had somewhere around 1.2 to 1.5 million deer. Buck Harvest was pushing 100,000 and total deer harvest was over 200,000. Hunter numbers back then was stated to be around 300,000. Buck limit was 5 at one point.
Somewhere around 2010ish - DNR pushed to bring numbers down - now the numbers have been drastically reduced - heard several with in our DNR say deer population is around 615,000 and buck harvest number has been around 60,000 the past few years and total deer harvest around 110,000. Number of hunters have dropped dropped as well to the last I had confirmed by a DNR employee of around 253,000. Plus the buck limit was reduced from 5 down to 3.
WV has been consistently ranked in the top 5 to 6 states in highest number of Non-resident hunters. Its funny where some of the WV supporters of this movement on here complain about the number of NR hunters who come to WV to fill their freezer with 3 young bucks and then go back to their home state that has a 1 buck limit and shoot a monster. Now some say bingo in regards to WV hunters going to other states to hunt. LOL
Facts are - that for the last two years around 700 hunters each of those years killed a third buck and about 6200 hunters have taken a second buck. That amounts to out of all successful hunters 12% of them also harvested a second buck and 1% percent harvested a third buck. Where the numbers get even more interesting is when you consider out of all hunters not just successful hunters somewhere between 18 to 20% kill one buck - 2.5% kill 2 bucks and around 1/3 of 1% of all hunters kill a 3rd buck here in WV.
I believe it was WVmountaineer - who said we have one of the largest bow only areas in the country plus several of our WMA have antler restrictions in place. Along with that there are plans to make additional WMA areas into trophy areas. I think what some of the supporters of lowering the buck limit fail to see is that our DNR is trying to provide as much hunting opportunity to all types of hunters - those who just want to see a deer and then areas for those who want to see more mature deer. Plus it actually allows for the private landowner to manage their property as they see fit to do so!
We are losing hunters across the country not just in WV - Wildlife management throughout the country has reduced deer populations which we all know was needed but by doing so I feel it also caused some of the decline in hunter numbers - because lets face it some people need instant gratification and if they are not harvesting or seeing any deer - then they give the sport up. Sometimes its hard to balance the scale and please everyone! Plus, with some of the complaints I see from the 1 buck state forums of some people not seeing deer or harvesting bucks for years - maybe other states need to follow WV in trying to provide for all hunters not just those in chase of a more mature buck!
Roughly a quarter of the buck harvest. Is my hu Tera who kill multiple bucks. WV HAS NOT HAD A SINGLE COUNTY KILL MORE DOES THAN BUCKS IN THE LAST TWO YEARS OR EVEN MORE. Aging statiins report harvest totals as high as 29% spikes. The most common buck harvested in WV is a year-long spike according to the last statewide aging survey.
Only a few percent of the hunting population poach and see how it affects us?
And the third tag brings 8n roughly 150k.
I see the same old people from WV posting against it, saying that only 900-1000 3rd bucks are killed. The question remains, how mnay people would shoot that 1st buck knowing they only had 2 total tags? if the 2nd had an APR on it? I would say lots of people would pass that yearling up. Its one of those things that cant be proven until its done.
WV kills more bucks than does every year...Last year every county killed more bucks than does....Biologists want more does and less bucks killed, but will tell you, we dont want involved in this political mess, but more does and less bucks.
Killing more does and getting the buck to doe ratio back in check, makes a stronger more intense rut, with does not being in heat for 2-3-4 times.............Which makes the fawning season less, which in turn makes predation issues in the fawning season less ....No more smorgasbord for 3 months..........More fawns survive, which i turn creates a better balance.
Most of the people against just like to beat their chest and claim to be the best buck hunters around, but who couldn't kill 3 yearling bucks? Stevie Wonder could do that.
Who couldn’t kill 3 yearling bucks - the 252,300 hunters in WV who didn’t last year - would be a good start! LOL I believe the number this past season was around 750 who killed 3 bucks and in 2017 it was like only 683 hunters. Plus I just find it hard to believe that out of those guys or gals who did kill 3 bucks - that they all killed young bucks. Also I need to really start using my reading glasses because I missed it - who here has beat their chest or has been one of the successful hunters Of the 750 who killed 3 bucks? 750 divided by 253,000 = .00296 - looks to me like that is closer to zero than even 1 percent.
Once again, hunters who killed multiple bucks killed 1/4th of all bucks in WV.
There may be numbers to support those claims Cory and Jeff. I haven't seen them and it seems that only a select few get to see them. At least that is what we get told regularly. Because the state doesn't break things down that way that I am aware of, for public consumption. That may have changed but, I honestly haven't looked due to simply being very happy with my hunting here.
Last time I checked, you get a buck harvest counting rifle and, a doe harvest counting rifle. I have never saw a breakdown of sex statewide for bows that I am aware of, at least recently. Nor for muzzleloader kills, urban hunts, etc... It wasn't that long ago you fellas were red between the ears because those numbers weren't Available for your consumption. Has that changed?
Many of the pro change guys claim the buck to doe ratio is 1 to 8 or, even higher statewide. Yet, refuse to apply that to the bulk harvest numbers for alternate weapons. Are only buck deer killed by the more primitive weapons? I'm not the sharpest tool in the shed but, if you have a season where any deer is legal on a general tag, I have a hard time not assuming the buck to doe ratio shouldn't be used to estimate those harvest breakdowns. However, when you do apply common knowledge to determine the sex breakdown of those weapons and special hunts, the harvest of does far exceeds the bucks. EVERY single time. That might not be correct. I do not know. But, I'm not convinced until I see public info to say differently.
Cory, if the numbers you claim are available to the public, please post them and correct me. Jeff, no one is beating their chest about being a better hunter. I didn't even kill a buck last year. No one I hunted with did except one guy. And, we have a big group.
The most ironic thing about all this is EVERY one on the change side, on this thread from WV, was blowing up the biologists three years ago because they weren't seeing any deer. Now the biologist are dead right because it fits their desires. Man how times change.
IT is what it is. No one is going to change their mind. And, anyone that doesn't hunt here has any idea of the diversity this state provides for deer hunters. When it is one of the only big game opportunity's you have, you'd better be good at providing a multitude of opportunity in order to draw those recipients. WV has been dong a pretty good job at that for a while now. With all kinds of places to tickle your bow only, AR loving desires. But, as Jay D stated, the DNR gives the private landowners the ability to manage their resident herd the way they want within the law. The DNR has no business managing private land for landowners. Unless of course the landowners want to open it up to public hunting.
God Bless men
We have as many bucks killed by hunters that kill two or more bucks a year than roadkill dwet totals for the state.
WV has 29% spike harvest? According to QDMA report the 1 1/2 year old buck make up of the WV buck harvest was 30% which was the lowest out of all the northeast states and even below the average for the Midwest states region.
The total of multiple bucks killed in WV is higher than roadkills? Again according to QDMA report that is not correct either. I can post a link for that report if you need it - just let me know....
I can post the info from the wvdnr. Thanks.
Ok I appreciate you posting that and I read it from my phone and don’t have my reading glasses on - I don’t see anything there that talks about 29% of the buck harvest were spikes or the number of bucks killed that were either the second or third buck a hunter had killed surpassed the number of road-kill deer.
It is nice to see though that our professional biologist feel the percentage of doe kills will keep our deer herd stabilized statewide.
Didn't say wv has 29% spike harvest. Stated an aging station had that much of a percent spike harvest.
When my home state (Illinois) had unlimited Bucks I advocated with other hunters to change those laws. Successfully to where they now have a 2 buck limit. Most hunters felt it definitely helped. Now, in Iowa unless you Bow & gun hunt your pretty much limited to one Buck (I just bowhunt). I have no problem with either states set up now other than I think a limit on bonus Doe tags should be leveled. Iowa does have county quotas. I have no problems with a 1 Buck or maybe two if a certain area has a larger population of animals.
Simple solution. It's time more states bifurcate public/private management. With everything posted and leased these days public is really what needs managed by the states. Private landowners want to lease and post and QDMA everything let them figure their own shit out and play biologist.
Just make it one buck limit on all public land. Balance the age structure better where the pressure is heaviest. One buck not only lowers harvest of second/third bucks but also makes people a hell of a lot less trigger happy on that first buck. Plenty of does for freezer meat so I'll pass on that baloney argument.
Keep regs as permissive as possible on private land. Landowners manage their own deer and/or fight with the neighbors over how many bucks they do or don't shoot. Private land is not goverments problem.
The problem with that approach in WV is that the average farm size is 157 acres. No matter how much of a deer paradise you make your land thru habitat management and food plots you cannot control a wild deer herd on 157 acres 24/7/365
West Virginia should have a point restriction on the bucks. A few years ago WV started a concurrent doe season during the 2 weeks of gun season. The mentality of most hunters is "if it is brown it is down". All hunters here in WV knows approximately only half of deer killed is checked in. We need something in place that would make a hunter realize what animal he is killing during the gun season.
Here in MN. we've had a 1 buck limit forever! Last few years have been APR in the southern zones. There's always doe tags available ,and I see no need to kill more than one buck a year.
Where I am in NY, we had the potential to shoot 8 bucks a year for a long time. I know a lot of folks who shot 4,5,6,7 and 8 bucks a season. I also know a lot of folks who only shot 1,2 or 3 but the common thread was that very few were picky about what bucks they filled their tags with.... they always had another tag in case “a good one” came by. The local butcher was filled with young bucks. A few years back they switched this area to match the rest of the state and only allow 2 buck tags. Guys still get to choose how to use their tags but many more are being selective on their first buck and a huge percentage is being selective on their second and last tag. As much as I love having two tags, I think the state could still benefit from a single buck tag.
Not sure why harvesting a doe or yearling buck is not perfectly acceptable if that is what the hunter prefers to eat. Can't eat antlers. Rutty meat is rarely desired over doe meat. As for the gutless method, is better in every way if you prefer less hair and bacteria on your meat.
We have a 2 buck and 4 doe limit in NC. I'd love to see it go to 1 buck but I don't think there is much support for that. For one reason or another, many of the hunters in our area don't shoot does at all. Just an old timer mentality.
+1 on the gutless method, better in every way. And yes, you still get blood on your hands.