So, what does all this mean? How does it help us manage game? What is the bottom line?
We had a big disease / die-off of whitetail deer around here in 2003. We were visiting with some landowners who were saying the deer hadn't yet recovered (Spring 2006). Frankly I think they were too busy arguing with each other (husband and wife) to notice ... the number of deer in the area was almost intoxicating. I am told that if the food is available the does will start cranking out twins and even triplets - and the population quickly rebounds. Seems to be the case where we were.
Sometimes I don't hold much stock in their little studies. I've seen more deer this spring in Idaho than just about any other year. It was a cold winter so a few more fawns probably died but the surplus to begin with will probably make up for it. Hopefully they don't use it for an excuse to cut hunts in certain units.
One of the best ways to scout your hunting area is to look for signs that mature animals leave behind. Wallows, scrapes, rubs and areas littered with tracks are great evidence that game are using your area. But why not look for the single piece of evidence that you are hunting for when fall rolls around anyway... antlers. Game animals in the family cervidae shed their antlers annually. Why not use these unique souvenirs as a way of helping you fill your tag next fall?
Looking for sheds in your...