Big Game Hunting

2023 Gun Numbers Released - DNR is succeeding in reaching their goal!

11/28/23 @ 2:10 PM
User since 4/1/05


There are the numbers.  Why is southern farmland not affected as badly as the rest of the state?    

Displaying 61 to 75 of 154 posts
12/6/23 @ 9:05 AM
User since 4/5/11
Clueless-some good points on the tagging requirements but it doesn't make the case for in person registration. I can think of scenarios where someone wouldn't register in person but would online/by phone, but cannot think of one scenario where someone would register in person but not by phone. An example, someone who lives 30 minutes from the nearest registration station shoots a fawn. Shooting a fawn is kind of humiliating to register in person to begin with and maybe they don't feel like waiting for the bar or gas station to open and wasting an hour on the road to register it. That same person is quite likely to pick up the phone and spend 2 minutes registering it. That's my base case that I'm betting registration rates are better, not worse, with online/phone registration.  That being said some valid points on the tagging but that's a completely different issue, as MN also has online/phone registration as well but still has carcass tags.
12/5/23 @ 10:21 PM
User since 10/24/04
Jbird, it’s not so much the registration process . Wisconsin no longer requires tagging your deer. I hunt Mn rifle season and you are issued a tyvac tag like Wi used to have. Upon killing a deer you must slit the month, day, amm or pm and buck or antlerless. Tag must be attached to animal once it’s being transported or back at camp. 
Here in Wi with no tag you can transport deer, get it back to your place and butcher. If a guy really wants a confirmation # all they have too do is phone in a roadkill and your issued a confirmation #. If you read Cuffs and Collars in WON there are quite a few citations for failure to register and in many cases they are cited for multiple years of non registration. 
IMO Wi has made it easy to poach w/ no tagging requirements and no in person registration. 
12/5/23 @ 8:51 PM
User since 7/22/12
Violators r gonna violate, regardless of requirements. Thats why we call them violators.  
12/5/23 @ 5:33 PM
User since 4/5/11
A lot of good conversation on this thread, but I have to admit I am a little puzzled as to why online/phone registration gets blamed as much as it does? Don't get me wrong, there was something nostalgic about everyone coming together to see the deer being registered, but I don't see how this change had made violating any easier. If anything this should only increase registration rates as someone who didn't want to bother driving to the nearest registration station with their doe fawn can now just call it in. If someone didn't want to register before this change they simply wouldn't drive it in to be registered, now they just wouldn't call/register online. Nothing has really changed for the violator, if they're caught by a warden with an unregistered deer the consequences are still the same. Maybe the only argument I could buy is that it's easier to officially register a 3.5 inch spike as an antlerless deer now, but other than that I just don't see it as a reason gun deer numbers are down. Other than that I don't see there being less violators if we changed back to in person registration, registering in person only impacts the people that are currently following the law anyways, violators will simply not bring them in.

Would love to hear your thoughts or more elaboration from those who commented on this, maybe I'm missing something! Just seems like a scapegoat without substance on the surface. 
12/4/23 @ 1:23 PM
User since 4/1/05
One has to remember the wolf situation is dire for us deer hunters.  Again, based on number provided by DNR, in Iron County 60 wolves will eat approximately 1200 deer.  Hunter harvest with all weapons is under 300.

Here is also a good listen that talks about states issuing too many antlerless tags: https://www.deeranddeerhunting.com/content/articles/tv-shows/deer-talk-now-updates/86-where-are-all-the-deer-deer-talk-now-podcast?utm_source=Deer+%26+Deer+Hunting&utm_campaign=3c69541441-EMAIL_CAMPAIGN_2023_12_01_02_20&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_-3c69541441-%5BLIST_EMAIL_ID%5D&mc_cid=3c69541441&mc_eid=864a65802f

12/2/23 @ 11:16 PM
User since 7/6/09
Looking at the link posted below, it seems like we get into trouble with overharvest when the total kill exceeds 400,000.  I'm basing this upon the large variations in harvest that have occurred from the 1990's onward, and lower harvests since 2010.  Thoughts on that interpretation:
Annual deer harvest totals

I'm also thinking, based on what others have said on here, and from the harvest over the last decade or so, that Wisconsin hunters either shoot all the deer they want (as a whole, certainly not true for each individual hunter) or are no longer willing to risk overharvest, after learning from the years of high harvest and subsequent low populations.

If that is true, it would suggest that the DNR needs to take hunter willingness more into account when setting harvest goals and regulations.  One question I don't hear anyone asking, on a statewide or management unit level, is "how many deer are you willing to shoot?"   Natural resource management is always more about managing the people than the resource, and in this case, it would especially be true.  They need to get an accurate picture of what the hunters desire to harvest. It looks to me like that number might be about 300,000, but is likely on the low side since most hunters in the northern part of the state are not likely shooting as many deer as they would like to, right?
12/1/23 @ 5:13 PM
User since 4/2/10
So it looks like archery kills range between 26% and 33%. But yes the overall kill remains about the same. Unless a heck of a lot of deer where killed late season bow hunting, about the same amount of deer are still around at the start of gun season now as before crossbows were legal. That really shoots a hole in the argument that there are less deer for the gun hunters. Even if crossbows were removed next year the vertical bow kills would probably go right back up. Again a dead deer is a dead deer, doesn't really matter how.
12/1/23 @ 4:59 PM
User since 6/17/08
Ya from the stats it seems like more people are moving from Bows to Crossbows but the overall harvest numbers aren't going up. But with only online Deer registration who knows if these stats are even right.
12/1/23 @ 4:29 PM
User since 5/19/06

Crossbow license sales up, ergo crossbow kills go up. ​
12/1/23 @ 4:24 PM
User since 6/17/08
I was curious about how the percentage of Deer Harvest by weapon has changed since Crossbows were introduced.

Total Harvest342,631-11%-10%-8%-7%-2%-15%-1%-10%-1%

12/1/23 @ 2:15 PM
PRO MEMBER User since 2/21/20
FWIW I have owned a xbow for 5 years, have hunted with it the last 2. I said I never would but I did enjoy target shooting with it. Then suddenly I couldn't pull my bow back some sort of shoulder issue. It was already season and no way was I not going to hunt. This year I thankfully have been able to shoot my hoyt but I seem to have lost confidence or I do something different from the shoulder injury and have had accuracy issues. It's getting better but I still chose to use the Xbow out of respect for the deer. I shot a buck with the Xbow last year. It was great, good clean kill. That being said it was not near the thrill of my compound bow kills. I'm hoping to get back to that next year. With my compound I limited myself to 35 yards and I do the same with the Xbow. They both have unique challenges while hunting. It is definitely not just pulling a trigger. I understand both sides of this discussion well and feel if used ethically both are fine. I cringe at what distances some people will shoot with either one. I do hope a fudd with a Xbow has a better chance of actually killing the animal instead of it running around with an arrow in it from a bad bow shot 
12/1/23 @ 2:14 PM
User since 8/27/01
One pointed out the issue, we are ALL to blame for this.  Here is a comment I read and will post, 

I get that it is legal, and anything that gets people hunting is a good thing.

That is just wrong, if you do not respect the resource, then go shoot ditch chickens at a game farm.  Do not destroy the wonderful outdoors and what it brings to real hunters!

As far as deer numbers, where I am at we have way too many, but the Archery hunters do take a toll on horned deer.  QDM is great, but sad if few do it while others reap the harvest.
12/1/23 @ 1:27 PM
User since 8/3/12
No problem. I will have to look and see if I can find the license sales graph for vertical vs xbow for the same time frame as well. Having that information may help paint a clearer picture of what we are looking at there.
12/1/23 @ 1:21 PM
PRO MEMBER User since 2/21/20
Thanks CM that is interesting to me. I will have to take a closer look at it 
12/1/23 @ 1:13 PM
User since 8/3/12
Oh, you also have to switch unit to statewide, i dont know why it defaults to apostle islands?
Displaying 61 to 75 of 154 posts

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