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  1. #26

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    Quote Originally Posted by brockel View Post
    I wasn't talking money from resident tags because us residents don't pay our fair share and I think a raise in resident tag pricing should be done. I was talking about if Montana went to draw they would lose a lot of nonresident cash just from the reduction of tags.
    It's already a draw system for non-res, so as long as they don't reduce the number of those tags being issued, there is no cash lost.
    Seeing as how they are now selling out, I guess I can't argue with the high prices for non-res tags. The supply/demand of these tags is pretty much equal. I would still like to see higher pricing for residents.
    Last edited by whiskeydog; 03-19-2017 at 10:50 PM.

  2. #27

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    How is the logging in Montana now compared to 1950? I notice multiple western states had peak deer populations around 1950-60, which correlates with peak logging on national forests in the western United States.

    Check out how this history of national forest policy compares to mule deer population history

    http://r.search.yahoo.com/_ylt=A0SO8...wqNGLvxvKhkpo-
    Last edited by Quackillr; 03-19-2017 at 11:30 PM.

  3. #28
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Location
    Missoula, MT
    Posts
    145

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    Available browse is clearly declining in many places, but I have had numerous biologists tell me that when the going gets tough in winter, elk displace deer. Elk can eat pretty much whatever they want and they'll occupy the best habitat during the toughest times. Many of the best remaining deer units in the West have low elk populations.

    With this said, there are other things going on that affect mule deer.
    Last edited by joelweb; 03-20-2017 at 05:57 AM.

  4. #29

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    Quote Originally Posted by whiskeydog View Post
    It's already a draw system for non-res, so as long as they don't reduce the number of those tags being issued, there is no cash lost.
    Seeing as how they are now selling out, I guess I can't argue with the high prices for non-res tags. The supply/demand of these tags is pretty much equal. I would still like to see higher pricing for residents.
    Yes I know nonresident is a draw but last couple years it has been near 100% draw. Now I don't know if it's because the number of nonresidents hunting Montana has dropped or has Montana pumped out more tags?

  5. #30

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    I'm in the Big Fin and Snowymountaineer camp...

    On public lands, "range health" is "better" than any time since it's been public lands. Those conditions favor elk over mule deer, IMO.

  6. #31

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    Quote Originally Posted by 1_pointer View Post
    I'm in the Big Fin and Snowymountaineer camp...

    On public lands, "range health" is "better" than any time since it's been public lands. Those conditions favor elk over mule deer, IMO.
    I would agree that is probably the case out west but does not explain the decline out east here where we don't have elk

  7. #32

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    Quote Originally Posted by brockel View Post
    I would agree that is probably the case out west but does not explain the decline out east here where we don't have elk
    Just too many getting killed...

  8. #33

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    Quote Originally Posted by 1_pointer View Post
    Just too many getting killed...
    Seen a lot more hung in fences dead this year than normal too. Wonder if the snow was giving them a hard time to get over the fences or just freak thing

  9. #34
    Join Date
    Jan 2001
    Location
    Laramie, WY
    Posts
    9,276

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    Quote Originally Posted by 1_pointer View Post
    I'm in the Big Fin and Snowymountaineer camp...

    On public lands, "range health" is "better" than any time since it's been public lands. Those conditions favor elk over mule deer, IMO.
    Yep, I'm in that camp as well.

    Elk don't out-compete deer, they just occupy the most favorable habitat. If its about elk out-competing deer, then why have the mule deer numbers continued to decline when elk are probably at the lowest population levels in much of Western Montana than they've been for the last 25 years? I also don't believe whitetails out-compete mule deer either.

    What I find odd, is that in Montana, the FWP manages via scorched earth policy...and its one extreme to the other. Not to mention they are totally reactive rather than proactive.

    Look at this thread, by what's been said here, the ONLY two options even suggested for mule deer management are Limited Quota or 11 weeks OTC unlimted from September through November.

    Most states realize that there are a boatload of options that exist between unlimited OTC tags/11 weeks and strict LQ...apparently that slipped under the radar of the MTFWP.
    "...the world outside, which my brother and I soon discovered, was full of bastards, the number increasing rapidly the farther one gets from Missoula, Montana." -Norman Maclean

    "They were still so young they hadn't learned to count the odds and to sense they might owe the universe a tragedy"
    -Norman Maclean

  10. #35

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    Whether we can agree on the causes of the decline of mule deer or not, I would think we could agree that the best way for FWP to arrest the decline would be to reduce hunter harvest at least in the short term. I believe there are areas in the west that you could close the hunting season on mule deer and their numbers would not increase significantly. If I was king we would lose the last 2 weeks of mule deer season statewide starting today.

  11. #36
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Location
    "Land of Giant Rams"
    Posts
    3,957

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    Quote Originally Posted by Quackillr View Post
    How is the logging in Montana now compared to 1950? I notice multiple western states had peak deer populations around 1950-60, which correlates with peak logging on national forests in the western United States.

    Check out how this history of national forest policy compares to mule deer population history

    http://r.search.yahoo.com/_ylt=A0SO8...wqNGLvxvKhkpo-
    In timbered mule deer habitat in the west, opening up the canopy improves the production of favored schrubs, but it also increases the ability of hunters to harvest these deer. More hunter restrictions and more quality forest management would benefit mule deer populations big league IMO.
    Wood is Good treefarmsystem.org

  12. #37
    Join Date
    Jan 2001
    Location
    Laramie, WY
    Posts
    9,276

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    Quote Originally Posted by MTTW View Post
    Whether we can agree on the causes of the decline of mule deer or not, I would think we could agree that the best way for FWP to arrest the decline would be to reduce hunter harvest at least in the short term. I believe there are areas in the west that you could close the hunting season on mule deer and their numbers would not increase significantly. If I was king we would lose the last 2 weeks of mule deer season statewide starting today.
    I would lose all mule deer hunting in the month of November.
    "...the world outside, which my brother and I soon discovered, was full of bastards, the number increasing rapidly the farther one gets from Missoula, Montana." -Norman Maclean

    "They were still so young they hadn't learned to count the odds and to sense they might owe the universe a tragedy"
    -Norman Maclean

  13. Default

    The sad thing is some of the new biologists that are starting their careers in this time of low deer numbers think this is the norm and don't realize how many deer the habitat is capable of holding. One biologist I know on the eastern side of the state said they counted 8 deer per square mile in a certain area and "that is a good healthy number given that type of country". In years past you would see 5x as many deer in that area.

  14. #39

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    Quote Originally Posted by bigsky2 View Post
    The sad thing is some of the new biologists that are starting their careers in this time of low deer numbers think this is the norm and don't realize how many deer the habitat is capable of holding. One biologist I know on the eastern side of the state said they counted 8 deer per square mile in a certain area and "that is a good healthy number given that type of country". In years past you would see 5x as many deer in that area.
    Likewise, it could be argued that some of the "glory days" of mule deer populations in the past were small, artificially inflated blips...

    PS- Mule deer populations and domestic sheep populations have a strikingly similar pattern...

  15. #40

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    Quote Originally Posted by brockel View Post
    Yes I know nonresident is a draw but last couple years it has been near 100% draw. Now I don't know if it's because the number of nonresidents hunting Montana has dropped or has Montana pumped out more tags?
    Combo tag numbers stayed the same. About 6 years ago the price went up, don't remember how much but it was a good jump. Lots of NR guys dropped out of the draws. Every year since then the tags haven't sold out in the main draw but it's gaining traction again and maybe the deer combo may sell out this season, but the elk/deer combo will probably go under-subscribed. That wasn't happening prior to 6 years ago.

  16. #41

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    Quote Originally Posted by BuzzH View Post
    Not to mention they are totally reactive rather than proactive.


    Root cause of the issue is identified in bold, above. Blame whatever you want for the decline, but this form of management is what perpetuates it.

  17. Default

    Quote Originally Posted by brockel View Post
    I agree and I believe that's why North Dakota does a good job by managing districts because deer numbers are so different from area to area rather than huge regions like Montana. How many square miles are in region 7 alone?
    North Dakota has it setup good with districts but do nothing to manage the deer at all . The nd gf has 0 idea how many deer there is . Honestly I've never seen a more screwed up department in my life than nd gf . Fwp isn't close to as bad .

  18. Default

    Quote Originally Posted by HalfAce View Post
    Combo tag numbers stayed the same. About 6 years ago the price went up, don't remember how much but it was a good jump. Lots of NR guys dropped out of the draws. Every year since then the tags haven't sold out in the main draw but it's gaining traction again and maybe the deer combo may sell out this season, but the elk/deer combo will probably go under-subscribed. That wasn't happening prior to 6 years ago.
    In 2010 I paid $343 for deer combo , in 2011 when it jumped it was like $542 or so . Big game went for $643 to around 900 and has been climbing a little every year

  19. #44

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    Quote Originally Posted by 8andcounting View Post
    North Dakota has it setup good with districts but do nothing to manage the deer at all . The nd gf has 0 idea how many deer there is . Honestly I've never seen a more screwed up department in my life than nd gf . Fwp isn't close to as bad .
    Deer quality in the badlands far exceeds that of public land in Montana. No comparison.

  20. Default

    Quote Originally Posted by MTGomer View Post
    Deer quality in the badlands far exceeds that of public land in Montana. No comparison.
    Yeh in 2/3 units for Muleys yes I agree . As far as white tails in ND our gf wrecked it

  21. Default

    Quote Originally Posted by MTGomer View Post
    Deer quality in the badlands far exceeds that of public land in Montana. No comparison.
    And do you like to hunt ? I dunno about you but I'm not waiting 8 years between tags quality or not. I've shot some nice bucks in montana nothing huge but most I've been pretty happy with and I get to hunt Muleys every year .

  22. Default

    I believe Montana FWP thinks management is tags sold $ and animals harvested. To blame elk is an easy out that is not true. An example would be look at large private propertys that support large elk and deer herds, that contain mature animals. Only the kings men are able to hunt these propertys so it is basically like a limited entry tag on asmaller scale. I have also noticed more rut activity during Dec/Jan. I assume of all the hunting pressure. Just a thought general season 3 weeks, with 3pt restriction unless a youth hunter, then limited entry last 2 weeks. How did the root form all the limited entry units it has now. Maybe we will get lucky and the root bio will get promoted to the head of FWP. Worst case scenerio I will call peta on FWP. "Save the muleys".

  23. #48

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    Quote Originally Posted by Killergaurd View Post
    How did the root form all the limited entry units it has now. Maybe we will get lucky and the root bio will get promoted to the head of FWP.
    2 of those LE HD's were 5 Root bios ago, and it took 3 years and a lot of hard work from a local sportsmen group to get them.

  24. #49
    Join Date
    Dec 2013
    Location
    glendive, MT
    Posts
    583

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    Quote Originally Posted by 8andcounting View Post
    North Dakota has it setup good with districts but do nothing to manage the deer at all . The nd gf has 0 idea how many deer there is . Honestly I've never seen a more screwed up department in my life than nd gf . Fwp isn't close to as bad .
    I will respectfully disagree! They fly and count md yearly and wt when adequate snow permits, they issue tags based on those numbers. Tags issued change yearly. This is management.

    Fwp changes no tags, can't count to 5. Gives out 5000 doe tags for no specific area 4 years after a major die off. Maintains the status quo for 2 years after the die off on doe tags. And frankly seem to have no effn idea why those pesky little sub unit designations are listed under region 7.

    This may be a lot of things but it is NOT management!

  25. #50

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    Quote Originally Posted by teamhoyt View Post
    I will respectfully disagree! They fly and count md yearly and wt when adequate snow permits, they issue tags based on those numbers. Tags issued change yearly. This is management.

    Fwp changes no tags, can't count to 5. Gives out 5000 doe tags for no specific area 4 years after a major die off. Maintains the status quo for 2 years after the die off on doe tags. And frankly seem to have no effn idea why those pesky little sub unit designations are listed under region 7.

    This may be a lot of things but it is NOT management!
    A big +1

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