Forest County Deer Hunting
Thanks for the link rikj, that's a great look at past winters. And certainly shows the winter of 13-14 was nasty. I thought going off of memory 14-15 would have looked worse than the chart showed but i turned 50 this week and my memory isn't what it used to be, LOL.
I believe severe cold has more to do with deer mortality than snow. The severity of 18-19 winter was primarily due to the deep snow which for the most part all came mid Feb thru March. I was up every weekend that winter and we were easily driving vehicles on the lakes till mid Feb. I saw enough deer in March of '19 that had no interest in getting in to the deep snow in the woods but by that time they didn't have severe cold to deal with.
This past winter 19-20 we got most all of our snow up there from Thanksgiving to mid Jan and in my opinion the cold never really showed up. My place is on a gravel fireroad that doubles as a snowmobile trail. I swear the frost was out of the ground by early April and this road is usually a mess thru the end of April. Jigrod.
Jigrod, last year(18-19) the winter severity index in Crandon was 81. Anything over 80 is rated severe. Lots of roof/dwelling damage from heavy snow. I do agree on the lack of deer and I have been hunting forest county since 1970. Two winters in a row 95 and 96 had horrible winters and the deer population was still higher than it is now..........Glad they stopped the doe hunting.....
I agree that many youth doe tags are filled by family members. Take the kids turkey hunting and leave the does alone for a few years. We really haven't had a rough winter up here for 5 years. I'm a little surprised the deer population hasn't improved at all, at least where I'm at (Hiles).
I saw more deer the fall of 2013 deer hunting then in any season since. The winters of 2013/14 and 2014/15 were brutal. I don't think the deer have recovered.
The Biologist wanted 300 antlerless permits plus all youth license's holders could shoot their doe also, but the CDAC voted to only let the youth hunters shoot a doe but to have a 0 quota for does for the rest of the hunters . Trouble is everyone knows half the youth doe permits filled are shot by an adult.
What did the DNR Biologist recommend? I just filled out the feedback for 2020 CDAC recommendations on the DNR site and it looked to me like a buck only season is being suggested. I could be wrong in how i interpreted the question though.
After listening to the DNR Biologists recommendations for the Forest County CDAC I thought I should take a ride to see all the deer we are supposed to have in our County. Took about a 40 mile UTV ride through the National Forest south of Armstrong Creek and I think I have to disagree with our biologist. We got our snow 6 days ago and I seen maybe 25 sets of deer tracks cross the road, 1 set of bear tracks. The alarming thing is I easily seen over 100 sets of wolf tracks crossing the road in the snow. The freshest set of deer tracks I seen had about 5 sets of wolf tracks hot on its trail so I have a bad feeling for that poor deer. A now retired biologist told me about 5 years ago " you only have maybe 10 deer per square mile after this last bad winter. Now each wolf needs 20 deer to survive, each pack has about 5 wolves in it so do the math and that's why there are no deer left in some areas of the northern Wisconsin "
23" of snow on the ground NE of Laona already. Very bad start to the winter for the deer.
As an add on to my comments yesterday. Last year our group (of 5) saw 7 deer. 5 doe, 2 fawn and 1 buck. I also saw a group of 3 wolves running over a ridge line and my son's walking in saw a group of 7 wolves run across an old railroad grade. When driving the fire lanes north of Hiles sometimes we see as many wolf tracks as deer tracks after a fresh snow. Yes, the late season and the Wed. night snow storm affected the 2019 hunt, but the number of wolves in the area just adds to the problem.
I've been hunting north of Hiles for 60 yrs now. In the same area for the last 50 yrs. Usually we have 5-6 hunters in camp. This was one of our worst years. We get to our stands in the dark and leave after 4:30 in the late afternoon. This year my youngest son saw a doe with 2 fawns and 2 wolves ,,, all on Monday morning. My oldest son hunted 7 1/2 days and saw no deer. By far one of our worst years. With the Wed. snow storm we were able to see the deer movement thru the area thru Sat. and most moved at night. Very few moved during daylight.