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What are everyone's thoughts? I have WAY too many does on my property. Last year, I will admit, I had buck fever and ended up not harvesting even one doe. Now, I'm paying for it. They are eating EVERYTHING. I'm hoping to harvest at least 5 does this year. There are 2 big momma's that I've been seeing on my trail cams.
What is your thoughts on waiting until late season (post rut) or early season (pre-rut). My natural thinking is that if you kill off alot of does early, your bucks won't have anything to chase around. But then again, there are always MANY more does out there than you think....
 

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Both Bucks and Does have lots of venison on them. I haven't found any recipies for antler stew or grilled horn.

My strategy is to take any deer (including a doe) when a good shot oppurtunity presents itself. I prefer getting as close as I can no matter what firearm/bow I am carrying. As long as there is a doe around, a buck will be there at some point looking for her. With too many does, a buck will not have to look hard and therefore will not be moving too much to find one. Harvest a doe when you have a good shot and the time to properly take care of it after the shot.
 

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There's nothing wrong with harvesting some of the Doe's, If you know you have a "LOT" of Doe's Why not harvest a few?
The only suggestion I would make is, "Be sure you're leaving a couple mature Doe's out there."
some Doe's don't reach maturity until they are between 1 and 2 years old & most are not able to reproduce until six months after they mature.
So as long as you keep that in mind you're not doing your hunting spot any harm by taking out a few doe's.
You mentioned taking 5, personally I wouldn't take any more than 2/3 from any hunting spot Even If I'm hunting public land and I hear of a few Does being harvested I'll refrain from taking one from that same area. I hope you understand the point I'm trying to make.
Good Luck to ya!
 
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there's a lot to what bb said. mature does keep the group together. if you shoot every mature doe the pod of does left could very well leave to find at old nanny to help keep them safe. this is realtivly new thinking out of texas where they see tons of deer so they are in front of the curve on alot of things deer.
 

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Interesting thought on mature does. I don't remember where I heard this but someone said that to "calm" the deer down in an area you need to shoot the mature does. They know the area better than most other deer therefore they are spookier and avoid "bad" areas more frequently. It makes sense that they are the ones that Hold the herd together.

Meat wise, i prefer the average size doe. Not too little yet not on the tougher side either.
 

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Years ago it was suggested that killing a mature doe that had a yearling buck fawn with her would make that buck tend to stay in the area and not leave as would naturally happen. Reason given was that the "mother" of the buck would run the buck off preceeding fawning the following year. Who knows.

But still, I don't worry about killing a mature doe. I there are "lots of Deer" as you say, there are lots of them on surrounding properties. More will move in to take the available habitat. That is the situation we have here.... gobs of them things. I have noticed that movement preferences will sometimes change if the lead does are taken out of the "pod" as Ron called it.
 

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Way too many does in a given area can lead to habitat destruction and nutritional deprivement for all leading to inferior antler growth and overall poor genetics. I would have no problems taking a few does. I also agree don't shoot too many of the mature does, for the above reasons given. As far as timing goes, if you shoot them in october prior to rut or late season there still will be no fawns born so timing really doesn't matter. just be sure to check for fawn bucks before pulling the trigger as they tend to look like 1.5 year old does.
 

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Depends on what kind of hunter you are. Mature bucks search out older does for breeding. Kill them and you will lessen your chances for a big boy. On the other hand old does make harvesting all of the other does more difficult with helping educate the rest of the herd. It comes down to what you are looking for as a hunter. Personally I would wait until late gun season , it won't matter then because all of the other hunters will have everything screwed up anyway. This way you have the best of both worlds.
 

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i like doe hunting but i tend to shoot year olds or two year old the old doe help hold the buck in the area in the rut and they are smart they know how to get thur winter if i have a really old doe i will some time try to take her out of the breeding plan she did her job
 

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It's always been a belief that mature bucks only seek older doe's, studies have shown that Bucks chase all doe's and in the end
it isn't the Buck that decides when or where the act of breeding will take place, it is the Doe that decides when, where and with which buck,,,
but it doesn't stop there, bucks will continue to do their best to make sure all doe's are bred not just one or two.
some bucks have actually been found dead due to their exhaustive rutting activity called "Exertion Myopathy",,, literally running themselves to death..
 

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Discussion Starter #11
that's always been my thought too, that if you shoot the mature does, the herd becomes less skiddish (missouri word). i hunt on a 200+ acre spot with woods all around me in just about every direction. that i know of, of the 5 neighbors, only 2 hunt their property. There are plenty of does to go around. But my logical thinking says that if you kill alot of does before the rut, the bucks will not be seeking those "dead" deer anymore. But on the other hand, i know that there is more than enough does out there.
A lady I work with hunts 40 acres of land and year and year she and her husband and daughters take 140+ inch deer. I ask her how she does it and she claims that their neighbors and them have a rule that you shoot at least one doe before you kill a buck. AND the buck has to be big enough to mount.... good practice, i think, if you can get your neighbors on board.
 

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here is another fact: fawns from one doe can have different buck genetics from being bred by multiple bucks during estrus period. So even though the big 10pt is doing the initial breeding, little spike horn makes his romps and presto who's your daddy. Normally in a set of fawns one buck and one doe fawn is produced, something mother nature figured out.
 

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The point of my earlier post is based on personal experience of 20+ years of hard core mature buck hunting. The main point that I was leading to is early season doe harvest WILL affect later season hunting mature animals if for nothing else than the disturbance cause by shooting and recovery of the doe or multiple does. This is fact if you locate older mature doe groups and hunt in and around their bedding/feeding areas sooner or later the biggest bull in the woods will show his face. This is not based on here say but based on my harvesting mature trophy bucks every year in my heavy hunting pressured state. Now if that is not your goal then by all means go and get them but keep in mind your season will get dramatically more difficult in the later part of the season. Mature does want to be bred by the best suiter for sustaining of the species. I have nothing against hunters that just want to shoot deer for the table so it is up to you as the hunter to decide what your goals are. Keep in mind if you really have that many does this might be the season that all you want to do is harvest as many as you can for betterment of the overall herd. Only you will be able to judge and make that call. Enjoy your season whatever you decide.:pickle:
 

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Just this, if its deer and within 50yds, its down.
venison is venison.
 

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It's always been a belief that mature bucks only seek older doe's, studies have shown that Bucks chase all doe's and in the end
it isn't the Buck that decides when or where the act of breeding will take place, it is the Doe that decides when, where and with which buck,,,
but it doesn't stop there, bucks will continue to do their best to make sure all doe's are bred not just one or two.
some bucks have actually been found dead due to their exhaustive rutting activity called "Exertion Myopathy",,, literally running themselves to death..

So you are saying because of excess exertion from mating the muscle of bucks becomes diseased? The reason i ask this is because myo- means muscle and -pathy means disease. Which equals diseased muscle together. I would say probably more like fatigue and starvation due to the urge of the rut?
 
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i think he's saying its the burning of muscle for energy which creates lactic acid which once it reaches a certain level, kills you. they run the fat off and keep running, burning muscle and die. a buck at the start of the rut will weigh WAY more than at the end of the rut.
 

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So you are saying because of excess exertion from mating the muscle of bucks becomes diseased? The reason i ask this is because myo- means muscle and -pathy means disease. Which equals diseased muscle together. I would say probably more like fatigue and starvation due to the urge of the rut?
No I'm not saying fatigue and starvation and YES I am saying the excess exertion from the rutting activity causes this disease known as "Exertional Myopathy". There is another link to this disease but I'm not able to find it right now but here is a Link from the Alaska DF&G.

I learned about Exertional Myopathy from Charlie Alsheimer who witnessed it happen during a program he filmed about the Rut..
 
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I haven't seen anyth

I haven't seen anything eitehr. I'm not sure if there's a big overlap in CFS patients and Wii users, but that's why I started the blog in the first place!
 

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i watched the show [email protected] deer hunting bruce is talking about a mature buck ran himself into the ground over the rut.it basically looked like he died of exhaustion,it looked liked heat stroke.the deer was running all over and panting uncontrollably.
 

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If I'm not mistaken it happened at Charlie Alsheimers research facility, it was one of their biggest bucks.
 
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