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Thread: PA Doe Tags

  1. #1
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    PA Doe Tags

    For those PA hunters that hunt in the WMU where the Doe license sell out in the first couple of weeks is there a chance you can not get a tag?

    Why should you have to pay for a license and then apply for a doe tag to hopefully get one.

    I hunt in 5D and 5C so I typically can get as many tags as I want usually up until the end of the season. Doesn't seem fair across the board.



    Doe License update as of 8/19/2008
    1A 42,000 22,826 19,174 Open
    1B 30,000 30,000 0 Closed
    2A 55,000 15,650 39,350 Open*
    2B 68,000 3,201 64,799 Open*
    2C 49,000 35,857 13,143 Open
    2D 56,000 38,965 17,035 Open
    2E 21,000 18,617 2,383 Open
    2F 28,000 28,000 0 Closed*
    2G 26,000 26,000 0 Closed
    3A 26,000 18,590 7,410 Open
    3B 43,000 22,489 20,511 Open
    3C 27,000 23,099 3,901 Open
    3D 37,000 20,819 16,181 Open
    4A 29,000 23,786 5,214 Open
    4B 23,000 21,093 1,907 Open
    4C 35,000 27,368 7,632 Open
    4D 40,000 35,354 4,646 Open
    4E 30,000 15,575 14,425 Open
    5A 19,000 9,062 9,938 Open
    5B 51,000 20,392 30,608 Open*
    5C 92,000 15,670 76,330 Open*
    5D 22,000 891 21,109 Open*
    Totals 849,000 473,304 375,696 Open


  2. #2
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    If you don't get drawn for a tag you get your $6 back, they don't keep it. Seeing as how it is a random drawing essentially, a lottery if you will, I don't see how the process could be anymore fair than it is now
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  3. #3
    Not sure what you're getting at? At least they lowered the number of 2G doe tags this year

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by DesignedToHunt View Post
    I don't see how the process could be anymore fair than it is now
    Not to hijack this thread, but it could be much more fair and convenient if PA would sell OTC doe tags like in Ohio. IMHO the Ohio system of OTC doe tags is far superior to the PA system of preparing a yellow envelope (and hoping you don't make a mistake), hoping that your unit does not sell out, hoping you get the doe tag in time for the early opening for archery in some units and if you do get a doe tag - hoping that it does not get lost in the mail, etc. (and God help you if you are an out-of-state hunter trying to get a doe tag in one of the units for which there is a great demand for doe tags or not many doe tags allotted).

    It is not surprising to me that more and more Western, Southwestern, and Southern PA bow hunters do a lot of their bow hunting in Ohio, Maryland and WV. Here in PA, there is no Sunday hunting and the archery season generally closes during the peak of the rut - why not go to Ohio where there is Sunday hunting, the season is open from early October all the way through the end of January and the buck to doe ratio is much better? In Ohio, OTC doe tags are good anywhere in the state. Here in PA, if I want to hunt a doe in more than one unit, I have to either apply through the mail for a "leftover" tag or go to the treasurer's office in the county that I want to get a doe tag for - the first option is inconvenient, the second option is not doable without taking time off of work and traveling to the treasurers office in some distant county.

    In my opinion, I think the PA system of doling out doe tags is antiquated and needs to be scrapped for a modern, computerized, on-demand licensing system like many other states have adopted.

    PA has a long and proud hunting heritage, but the doe tag system is one major part of PA's hunting history that needs to be changed. I will concede that a lot of PA hunters like the "yellow envelope" system, I'm just not one of them.

    While I am on my soapbox, I will further stir the pot by saying that the antler restriction regulations are the best thing that have happened to deer hunting in PA in a long time. Gary Alt is a visionary and a first class wildlife biologist - his departure from the PA Game Commission was a great loss for that organization.

    Greetings to all PA bow hunters - have a successful and safe season.
    Last edited by bdinpgh; August 20th, 2008 at 02:22 PM. Reason: left out an important point
    BDINPGH

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by angermanagement View Post
    Why should you have to pay for a license and then apply for a doe tag to hopefully get one.
    how else would you do it?? i dont want a tag for the area that i live...i want a tag for the area i hunt!

    i really dont know how it could be more fair??
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  6. #6
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    Well said ^^
    Love the antler restrictions. Wish we had Sunday hunting. OTC tags might not be a bad idea
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  7. #7
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    Thumbs up Wow

    BDINPGH, I couldn't agree with you anymore. I think everything you just said should have came out of my mouth and probably has before. Everyone talks down about Mr. Alt and what he has done to Pa. What I have been seeing lately are a lot nicer buck on trail cameras and a lot of very nice bucks taken in 2007. Everyone is starting to like Gary now!!!! Reguardless.........just wanted to say nice post and I do agree. Doug

  8. #8
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    what if you don't get a doe tag?

    So say you don't get a doe tag. Basically you purchased a license for a Buck (under the assumption that you only hunt deer). Now out of all the deer hunters in PA only 17% get a buck. So if you factor in the low chance of getting a doe permit, low the probability of shooting a buck within point restrictions and the amount of deer available I guess it could be frustrating for some deer hunters in PA.

    I just figured if you gave a doe permit with every license more deer hunters would be inclined to stick with the sport considering the percentages are not on our side. Just on less thing a hunter has to worry about.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by bdinpgh View Post
    Not to hijack this thread, but it could be much more fair and convenient if PA would sell OTC doe tags like in Ohio. IMHO the Ohio system of OTC doe tags is far superior to the PA system of preparing a yellow envelope (and hoping you don't make a mistake), hoping that your unit does not sell out, hoping you get the doe tag in time for the early opening for archery in some units and if you do get a doe tag - hoping that it does not get lost in the mail, etc. (and God help you if you are an out-of-state hunter trying to get a doe tag in one of the units for which there is a great demand for doe tags or not many doe tags allotted).

    It is not surprising to me that more and more Western, Southwestern, and Southern PA bow hunters do a lot of their bow hunting in Ohio, Maryland and WV. Here in PA, there is no Sunday hunting and the archery season generally closes during the peak of the rut - why not go to Ohio where there is Sunday hunting, the season is open from early October all the way through the end of January and the buck to doe ratio is much better?

    In my opinion, I think the PA system of doling out doe tags is antiquated and needs to be scrapped for a modern, computerized, on-demand licensing system like many other states have adopted.

    PA has a long and proud hunting heritage, but the doe tag system is one major part of PA's hunting history that needs to be changed. I will concede that a lot of PA hunters like the "yellow envelope" system, I'm just not one of them.

    While I am on my soapbox, I will further stir the pot by saying that the antler restriction regulations are the best thing that have happened to deer hunting in PA in a long time. Gary Alt is a visionary and a first class wildlife biologist - his departure from the PA Game Commission was a great loss for that organization.

    Greetings to all PA bow hunters - have a successful and safe season.


    well said
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  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by bdinpgh View Post
    Not to hijack this thread, but it could be much more fair and convenient if PA would sell OTC doe tags like in Ohio. IMHO the Ohio system of OTC doe tags is far superior to the PA system of preparing a yellow envelope (and hoping you don't make a mistake), hoping that your unit does not sell out, hoping you get the doe tag in time for the early opening for archery in some units and if you do get a doe tag - hoping that it does not get lost in the mail, etc. (and God help you if you are an out-of-state hunter trying to get a doe tag in one of the units for which there is a great demand for doe tags or not many doe tags allotted).

    It is not surprising to me that more and more Western, Southwestern, and Southern PA bow hunters do a lot of their bow hunting in Ohio, Maryland and WV. Here in PA, there is no Sunday hunting and the archery season generally closes during the peak of the rut - why not go to Ohio where there is Sunday hunting, the season is open from early October all the way through the end of January and the buck to doe ratio is much better? In Ohio, OTC doe tags are good anywhere in the state. Here in PA, if I want to hunt a doe in more than one unit, I have to either apply through the mail for a "leftover" tag or go to the treasurer's office in the county that I want to get a doe tag for - the first option is inconvenient, the second option is not doable without taking time off of work and traveling to the treasurers office in some distant county.

    In my opinion, I think the PA system of doling out doe tags is antiquated and needs to be scrapped for a modern, computerized, on-demand licensing system like many other states have adopted.

    PA has a long and proud hunting heritage, but the doe tag system is one major part of PA's hunting history that needs to be changed. I will concede that a lot of PA hunters like the "yellow envelope" system, I'm just not one of them.

    While I am on my soapbox, I will further stir the pot by saying that the antler restriction regulations are the best thing that have happened to deer hunting in PA in a long time. Gary Alt is a visionary and a first class wildlife biologist - his departure from the PA Game Commission was a great loss for that organization.

    Greetings to all PA bow hunters - have a successful and safe season.



    OTC tags?? Why would that be fair? The PGC doesn't want every person in the state to have a doe tag. If that was their goal then each WMU would not have a certain amount of tags and you would just be able to walk in and buy them at Wal-Mart. I for one don't find filling out the envelope and app all that difficult, especially since I have been doing it for 15 years now and the PGC puts a checklist on the envelope.

    If you get one you get one, if you don't you don't. It really is quite fair.
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  11. #11
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    Honestly, all this sounds like to me is a bunch of people who are unhappy because they are not guaranteed a doe tag. I see all these long responses here but the majority of them just read "Waaaaa waaaa, me me me" from what I can tell.


    "It's not fair because I am not guaranteed a tag!".... booo hoooo



    Funny part is if the PGC sold tags to everyone over the counter then I bet some of you would be the first in line to cry foul on the PGC and say there are no deer left
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  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by DesignedToHunt View Post
    Honestly, all this sounds like to me is a bunch of people who are unhappy because they are not guaranteed a doe tag. I see all these long responses here but the majority of them just read "Waaaaa waaaa, me me me" from what I can tell.


    "It's not fair because I am not guaranteed a tag!".... booo hoooo



    Funny part is if the PGC sold tags to everyone over the counter then I bet some of you would be the first in line to cry foul on the PGC and say there are no deer left
    No booo hoooo on my side. Suprisingly I started this thread because I didn't think it was fair that some hunters may not be able to get a doe tag. In my case I can go down to the court house and by 100 if I wanted as long as I had the cash. I'm in a fortunate situation but for most PA deer hunters the odds are against them and that's one of the reasons why so many hunters do not continue in the sport.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by angermanagement View Post
    No booo hoooo on my side. Suprisingly I started this thread because I didn't think it was fair that some hunters may not be able to get a doe tag. In my case I can go down to the court house and by 100 if I wanted as long as I had the cash. I'm in a fortunate situation but for most PA deer hunters the odds are against them and that's one of the reasons why so many hunters do not continue in the sport.



    I am very fortunate as well because I live in Allegheny County (2B) and like you I can buy $6,000 worth of tags if I felt like it. However, I also send for 2F every year so I can hunt Tionesta and Clarion but I know there is a chance each and every fall that I may not get my 2F tag because of the lottery and I am fine with that. I can still go to camp just for kicks or to strictly hunt bone and when I get home I can focus on doe as well. If someone doesn't get drawn for a tag in the WMU that they want then all they have to do is buy one for another WMU, do a little research and make the trip like hundreds of hunters do each fall. Heck, I've run in to guys from all over the state here in Allegheny County that didn't get drawn in their units so they decided to come down here and hunt.


    I can somewhat see your point about "keeping people interested" but as I said, this has been going on for years, the process was not thrown upon us last night and I don't see what is so unfair about it.
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  14. #14
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    i don't really have a dog in this fight anymore, but i hunted in PA for 17 years, and the only time i didn't get a doe tag was the years where i couldn't afford to send for one in time. they have it set up to pretty much ensure that residents who wish to hunt a doe will get their tag. residents get first chance then non residents can apply. i don't knw of anyone who has ever been denied their first round tag as long as the app. was sent in before the first round of non resident tags went in. PA has too many brown and down hunters to just sale tags over the counter, the application and alotment system is based on how many deer are supposedly in each WMU and the number that the PGC feels can safely be harvested with out really hurting the population. any other way would have seriously bad effects on the deer population in many of the WMUs
    the only thing i wish PA would change is to implement game checking stations so they actually had some way of really estimating the deer population in each WMU instead of just guessing based on those stupid report cards that nobody ever turns in.
    PA has many problems when it comes to the management of the whitetail population but i personally don't feel that their doe tag system is one of the problems.
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  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by angermanagement View Post
    So say you don't get a doe tag. Basically you purchased a license for a Buck (under the assumption that you only hunt deer). Now out of all the deer hunters in PA only 17% get a buck. So if you factor in the low chance of getting a doe permit, low the probability of shooting a buck within point restrictions and the amount of deer available I guess it could be frustrating for some deer hunters in PA.

    I just figured if you gave a doe permit with every license more deer hunters would be inclined to stick with the sport considering the percentages are not on our side. Just on less thing a hunter has to worry about.

    Unfortunately that's hunting. The days of killing deer in this state are over. If you are not a hunter and/or put in what you expect out, you will be disappointed. Sure Ohio and other states give out guaranteed licenses, but give it time--Ohio and others will dry up.

    PA gets too much use. Similar to golf courses. Your best playing is where it usually is difficult to get in. PA cannot be a free-for-all.

    I also do not get the movement of trying to keep people hunting. Sure it sounds great but you either have it in you or you don't. I know I kept hunting pre-AR days when you were lucky to see bone 1 day all season.

    JMO.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by DesignedToHunt View Post
    OTC tags?? Why would that be fair? The PGC doesn't want every person in the state to have a doe tag.

    Yes indeed, I do know what the PGC wants, but that is exactly the problem here in the Keystone state! In my opinion, the PGC should want everyone to have a statewide doe permit and should make them easily available OTC. The hunters will go where the deer are plentiful and the hunting is good. All you have to do is look to those states that do allow statewide hunting with OTC tags. Their buck-to-doe ratios are much better than PA's ratios.

    Since my experience is mostly with Ohio (where I lived for a number of years), that is the best example I can point to without doing some research. In Ohio, the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) has issued OTC doe tags that are good for the entire state for a number of years. From time-to-time the ODNR will limit the number of antlerless deer that can be taken in a particular region of the state to help the deer population if they notice that deer numbers are at a level that is concerning to them.

    ODNR also requires that every deer carcass be taken to a "check station" and the "temporary" tag you put on the carcass is replaced with a metal "permanent" tag. Each check station keeps track of the permanent tags it issues and reports their statistics to the ODNR. This allows ODNR to very precisely monitor the number of does taken in the various counties. Part of the problem with the PA doe system is the inability of the PGC to precisely track the deer harvest due to the fact that many hunters fail to fill out and return their report cards. The PGC is therefore forced to estimate the actual deer harvest. This puts PA's wildlife biologists at a great disadvantage when it comes to making recommendations about the deer populations in the various regions/counties of PA.

    In the final analysis, it is my sneaking suspicion that the true reason for the fact that PA continues to cling to their current doe tag system is because of the $$ that is funneled through individual counties, rather than keeping the $$ at a state level of administration.

    It is time for PA's hunters to recognize the shortcomings of this system and demand something better. After all, it is the $$ we spend on our hunting licenses accounts for a great deal of the revenue generated by the PGC.
    BDINPGH

  17. #17
    Gary Alt is a visionary and a first class wildlife biologist - his departure from the PA Game Commission was a great loss for that organization.

    QUOTE]

    While I agree with MOST of what you said, allow me to just add that I have heard Gary Alt called many things, and VISIONARY has NEVER been one of them

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by bdinpgh View Post
    Yes indeed, I do know what the PGC wants, but that is exactly the problem here in the Keystone state! In my opinion, the PGC should want everyone to have a statewide doe permit and should make them easily available OTC. The hunters will go where the deer are plentiful and the hunting is good. All you have to do is look to those states that do allow statewide hunting with OTC tags. Their buck-to-doe ratios are much better than PA's ratios.

    So you are saying that the PGC should aim for total elimination of the deer herd as opposed to what they are doing now?

    There are A LOT of places that have been hit hard with HR and allowing everyone to buy a tag would make things even worse in certain places. Hunters right now have the opportunity to go where the deer are plentiful and the hunting is good such as area 2B and the other areas that have a high population of deer. However, very few of them actually do it because that would require some scouting and thinking, and we all know that it's easier to sit around the bar and cry about the PGC and how there aren't any deer left in PA. Not saying this towards you, but there are A LOT of lazy hunters in PA with this mentality. If you look at the numbers posted below you'll see that there are PLENTY of doe tags left across the state and with all of the game lands and public lands available in general across PA I don't see a reason everyone couldn't get a doe tag if they wanted one bad enough.



    1A 42,000 22,826 19,174 Open
    2A 55,000 15,650 39,350 Open*
    2B 68,000 3,201 64,799 Open*
    2C 49,000 35,857 13,143 Open
    2D 56,000 38,965 17,035 Open
    2E 21,000 18,617 2,383 Open
    3A 26,000 18,590 7,410 Open
    3B 43,000 22,489 20,511 Open
    3C 27,000 23,099 3,901 Open
    3D 37,000 20,819 16,181 Open
    4A 29,000 23,786 5,214 Open
    4B 23,000 21,093 1,907 Open
    4C 35,000 27,368 7,632 Open
    4D 40,000 35,354 4,646 Open
    4E 30,000 15,575 14,425 Open
    5A 19,000 9,062 9,938 Open
    5B 51,000 20,392 30,608 Open*
    5C 92,000 15,670 76,330 Open*
    5D 22,000 891 21,109 Open*
    Totals 849,000 473,304 375,696 Open
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  19. #19
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    As a hunter who has been hunting in Pa for deer since he was 12 this topic interest me a lot. I think the PGC has things a@$ backwards when they allow hunters to walk into WalMart the night before season and buy a license to harvest a buck, but make hunters apply early for doe tags. There are far more doe than buck in Pa. Shouldn't more doe be harvested and more buck protected? I for one know a lot of your run of the mill hunters who will not go through the hastle of applying for doe tags. This is what has caused the doe to buck ratio to get way out of hand over the years. I would like to see the PGC sell doe tags more liberally and OTC as the poster said. Dr. Alt knew what he was doing and the critics are finally realizing that even after all their *****ing. The majority of the people who forced him out of office were the traditional Pa hunters. The older hunters who think they want the days of millions of deer even if it means unhealthy deer and an out of balance doe to buck ratio. They are now saying... maybe Dr. Alt was right and because of antler restrictions we are seeing nicer buck. It is not about trophy management. It is about having a balanced doe to buck ratio and more mature deer in the herd. The proof is in the pudding. Look at what Dr. Alt did with bear management. Pa used to be an average bear hunting state. Now it is near the top with number and size of bears harvested. Best of luck Pa hunters. I hope things improve in the future.

  20. #20
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    Talking

    what more do you want....it's Pennsylvania
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  21. #21
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    I guess I am just used to the way the doe permit has been set up since I been doing it for the last 35 years. I hunt 1B and honestly, I can't recall a single year I didn't get a doe permit. There were years I had 2. Most the time I get 1 to get 1 but don't harvest a doe because I always concentrate on that eluding big buck. I hunt NY as well and travel to the midwest for a week every year as well for change of scenery. I'm another that is glad to have the AR but every year I wish NY would because the young bucks I see and hope to get bigger are getting plowed as they cross the line come slug season in NY. Most don't make it in my area, but the older ones do & they keep me seeking them!
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  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by DesignedToHunt View Post
    So you are saying that the PGC should aim for total elimination of the deer herd as opposed to what they are doing now?

    There are A LOT of places that have been hit hard with HR and allowing everyone to buy a tag would make things even worse in certain places. Hunters right now have the opportunity to go where the deer are plentiful and the hunting is good such as area 2B and the other areas that have a high population of deer. However, very few of them actually do it because that would require some scouting and thinking, and we all know that it's easier to sit around the bar and cry about the PGC and how there aren't any deer left in PA. Not saying this towards you, but there are A LOT of lazy hunters in PA with this mentality. If you look at the numbers posted below you'll see that there are PLENTY of doe tags left across the state and with all of the game lands and public lands available in general across PA I don't see a reason everyone couldn't get a doe tag if they wanted one bad enough.



    1A 42,000 22,826 19,174 Open
    2A 55,000 15,650 39,350 Open*
    2B 68,000 3,201 64,799 Open*
    2C 49,000 35,857 13,143 Open
    2D 56,000 38,965 17,035 Open
    2E 21,000 18,617 2,383 Open
    3A 26,000 18,590 7,410 Open
    3B 43,000 22,489 20,511 Open
    3C 27,000 23,099 3,901 Open
    3D 37,000 20,819 16,181 Open
    4A 29,000 23,786 5,214 Open
    4B 23,000 21,093 1,907 Open
    4C 35,000 27,368 7,632 Open
    4D 40,000 35,354 4,646 Open
    4E 30,000 15,575 14,425 Open
    5A 19,000 9,062 9,938 Open
    5B 51,000 20,392 30,608 Open*
    5C 92,000 15,670 76,330 Open*
    5D 22,000 891 21,109 Open*
    Totals 849,000 473,304 375,696 Open
    No I'm not advocating for the elimination of the deer herd. OTC doe tags that are valid anywhere in the state would actually have the opposite affect. Consider the following scenario:

    - average Joe hunter hunts in one of Northcentral counties of PA
    - he has been hunting there for years
    - he is tired of not seeing "herds" of anterless deer like in the good old days.
    - he wants to change things up and go to SW PA to get in on some of the good deer hunting action he keeps hearing about
    - he wants to be able to hunt doe OR buck
    - and he wants to be certain that he gets a doe tag for his "home" unit.


    Under the present system, his best case scenario to accomplish his goals are as follows:
    - He fills out the form and sends the yellow envelope with a request for a tag for his "home" unit
    - He then must wait until he can apply for the first round of unsold tages and send in another yellow envelope on the fourth Monday in August.
    - He must then wait and wait to see of his yellow envelope is returned with the tag for the other unit.
    - Of course he has been reluctant to go check out SW PA hunting opportunities because he is not sure he will get his tag.
    - He gets his tag for the SW PA unit and then must hope to find a place to hunt and mayby have a chance to do some scouting.

    In Ohio - the process for the same type of scenario is as follows:

    - Go to any one of the thousands of license vendors across the state and purchase a statewide OTC doe tag.
    - Go scout out a spot anywhere in the state
    - Go hunt.

    Maybe I'm just spoiled from my experience in Ohio, but I sure like doing it that way better and even though Ohio has been doing it this way for years, there are plenty of deer and it is a bow hunters paradise.

    Well I have said enough on this subject, it it time for me to go work on my second yellow envelope as the 4th Monday in August is quickly approaching. If I'm lucky I may get 1B doe tag and get to hunt with my in-laws this year!
    BDINPGH

  23. #23
    As someone already stated there are too many brown and down hunters in PA that go out the first day of rifle season and shoot the little buck that has the minimum amount of points instead of maybe passing him up and letting him get introduced to the breeding cycle. People always say well there are more doe than buck, there is going to be if people do not start passing on some little buck and letting them mature to breed with the overabundance of doe that we supposedly have. I hunt on my families private property in 3C and have seen fewer deer year after year, and we try manage our property along with our neighbors and their surrounding properties. It should be an interesting year for doe hunting since 3C is one of the selected WMU's that has the doe restrictions limited to only one week of rifle season. This will hopefully allow more deer to slip through the cracks that have been bred so that the deer herd can start to come back from the overhunting that has occured. In short.....keep the process as is. If you want a doe tag follow the process and quit whining about it because you waited unitl the last minute to send your "yellow envelope" in.

  24. #24
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    South Central Pa.
    Posts
    1,955
    i think what we are missing is the words "postage"....."mail".....a re you getting it yet???
    Μολὼν λαβέ

  25. #25
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Harrisonburg, Virginia
    Posts
    2,347
    This year is going to be my first year hunting PA and and trying to figure out the license process and the anterless permist have been a major pain. The only place I have ever bought a hunting license before here in VA and it is simple as can be. residents and non residents the same get 2 either sex tag (west of the Blue Ridge) and 3 either sex west of the Blue Ridge. Then you get 3 antlerless tags 3 turkey tags and 1 bear tag. I just got my PA license and I am having one heck of a time figuring out the antlerless application.
    "I'm your huckleberry"

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