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What are you targeting while hunting?

  • Any legal deer?

    Votes: 30 17.6%
  • 1.5 year old or better

    Votes: 7 4.1%
  • 2.5 year old or better

    Votes: 33 19.4%
  • 3.5 year old or better

    Votes: 61 35.9%
  • 4.5 year old or better

    Votes: 32 18.8%
  • 5.5 year old or better

    Votes: 5 2.9%
  • 5.5 +

    Votes: 2 1.2%

Average hunting land question (Poll)

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If you hunt on strictly average ground, please take this poll. If you hunt highly managed land and have exclusive access or very limited, please do not vote.

I am trying to get a feel for what "the average hunter " today is seeing, experiencing and hoping to shoot .
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I own a very small parcel of timber, so I don't have a lot of choices. Some years I see deer crossing my property, some years I don't. I've never seen a 140" buck cross my property. I just don't think the genetics are there. I won't shoot a small buck, so I usually take a doe if I get a chance.
 

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I would say I hunt VERY average ground. I've owned this since 2019 and maybe seen four different bucks between hanging in a tree and cam pics. Three of them were just little buttons or spikes and one decent 8 pt buck that was pretty good size for around here. But this piece of land is a doe factory and the reason I bought it.

I personally don't shoot bucks. I'm not high and mighty and have anything against people that do. I've shot one buck in my life and the owner kinda made me and it was a 2pt spike. I guess hanging a head on the wall just isn't me and I'm by FAR too cheap to pay a taxidermy bill. So I really don't think old mature bucks taste very good (they steer cattle for a reason). I can't emphasize enough though that if I were to shoot a monster buck I would have a VERY hard time letting go the money to have it mounted.

I try to not buy store bought beef and supplement with deer. My wife doesn't eat meat and we have two teenagers so I try to get 6-7 doe per year between my property and two other properties and that pretty much gets me to the next summer and then my mouth gets watery until 3rd Saturday of Sept.

Now the one real nice buck on my property I let one of my lease mates come over and take it. The other two properties I let bucks walk so that someone who would really appreciate them can have a shot at them. On the flip side sometimes when they shoot a doe they tag their own deer like they should but I pay the processor and keep the meat.

I'd like to reiterate I'm not against people who like trophy deer and hunt within legal rules and laws. Sometimes (not just in hunting but in life in general) just because it's legal it may not be ethical to me. People have different priorities - some like fast sports cars and some like 4X4 off road vehicles.
 

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'average' is pretty open to interpretation.

I consider my land very average for South Western Wisconsin. For some places, the deer we pass are monsters. For some other places, the deer we shoot are small.

My main property is 36 acres mostly wooded with a 9 acre half corn half alfalfa field in the drift less area of the state. Our hit list is based on the top 3-5 deer we have on camera. Generally speaking we try to pick deer 4.5+, but sometimes a 3.5 will make it on the list. The number of deer is pretty great here so we try to shoot 2-3 does each if possible and take a mature deer. There are TONS of little bucks running around as well. The kids do shoot a few of them.

My other property is the family farm which is 160 acre flatland very close to the Illinois boarder. Mostly tillable with only about 40ish acres of woods and 5 acres of CRP. Most years we don't have a shooter buck on camera here. We do get a few shooters that roam through during rut though, so you never know what is going to happen here. Anything 3.5+ that has big enough antlers that we want to shoot it is on the list here, but we generally are waiting for that big one to take a walk. We don't shoot doe because the herd numbers aren't super high and we don't shoot any small bucks unless the kids want to shoot one.

I voted 4.5+ because that's what I personally am looking for, generally speaking. Plenty of our hit list bucks get killed by the neighbors every year..so it's not like we can easily let a deer grow knowing it will come back. It's maybe a 50/50 chance or less that anything over 120" will make it.
 

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The “average” hunter would do a little better if they didn’t all have the same approach of killing everything moving. Everytime there’s a “how many would pass this buck” thread going 99.99 percent of the people commenting are shooting it. They all have some excuse why. 98 percent of the kills posted are 2-3 years old max.

this thread alone you’ve got people killing 7-8 deer off their already very low average property.

if we shortened gun season dramatically cut half the tags and put some trophy laws into effect all these “average” properties might turn into something with a few years rest.

a lot of people claim having great property and trophy hunting is “easy” I think targeting a fair chase 180 plus inch deer every year is far more challenging than walking into public land killing a 2 year old 6 point and a few does. While the numbers may be lower the skill it takes to get close to a 2-3 year old deer is about the skill of taking a tootsie roll from a toddler.
 

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Some properties just do not have the correct characteristics to hold Big mature bucks. I hunt a 300+ acre farm (100 acres timber) that has never held big bucks due to its lack of Heavy thick cover. We got alot of does so during the rut we have alot of bucks cruze through. I had 4 cameras running from Halloween till last Sunday. This year I didnt look at a trail cam pics until I was done hunting so I could gage whether I was making the right choices based on sign instead of TC pics. When I pulled the cards to see If I had hunted the property properly I was relieved to see the biggest deer on there was a 120 inch 9 pointer that I had let walk on 3 different occasions. Cant kill what aint there
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 · (Edited)
The “average” hunter would do a little better if they didn’t all have the same approach of killing everything moving. Everytime there’s a “how many would pass this buck” thread going 99.99 percent of the people commenting are shooting it. They all have some excuse why. 98 percent of the kills posted are 2-3 years old max.

this thread alone you’ve got people killing 7-8 deer off their already very low average property.

if we shortened gun season dramatically cut half the tags and put some trophy laws into effect all these “average” properties might turn into something with a few years rest.

a lot of people claim having great property and trophy hunting is “easy” I think targeting a fair chase 180 plus inch deer every year is far more challenging than walking into public land killing a 2 year old 6 point and a few does. While the numbers may be lower the skill it takes to get close to a 2-3 year old deer is about the skill of taking a tootsie roll from a toddler.
I have seen your posts , you are pretty much out of touch with how MOST hunt or experience. Go elsewhere, im sure the Drury's would love to talk to you.

in an earlier thread you only want to talk to people that have multiple booners and beat your chest like a Bowmar. Hope you didn't vote, because you are not on average ground.
 

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I have seen your posts , you are pretty much out of touch with how MOST hunt or experience. Go elsewhere, im sure the Drury's would love to talk to you. Hope you didn't vote, because you are not on average ground.
I started on average Georgia hunting property just like everyone else. I’m very in tact with what the average hunter is doing. Your attitude is prime example of why the poor stay poor and rich get Richer. Everybody has the opportunity to do what I do or what the drurys do at some scale. Some are willing to put in the work and most are not. And as usual the ones who are not are bitter with the ones who do.

If I was in the game of trying to further my hunting habits and career I don’t think I’d be telling the only ones who have accomplished what I’m trying to accomplish to move along. Not very wise. Guys like the drurys might know a thing or 2..
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
I started on average Georgia hunting property just like everyone else. I’m very in tact with what the average hunter is doing. Your attitude is prime example of why the poor stay poor and rich get Richer. Everybody has the opportunity to do what I do or what the drurys do at some scale. Some are willing to put in the work and most are not. And as usual the ones who are not are bitter with the ones who do.
And some don't care as much. You do you, and the rest of us common peasants will do us, unless someone mistakes you for a deer in the meantime since you hate lights and people who use them.
 
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