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      Members Only Fluid Forum View   08/08/2017

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Scott M

lcornice-fawn weaning question

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Passed on a doe with fawns yesterday, as I'm sure many archers did on Saturday.

I guess I was just wondering, outside of the ethical/moral dilemma of taking a doe with fawns, what are the chances of fawn survivorship if you did harvest said doe? Don't whitetails typically wean around the one year mark?

Thanks.

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The Reading I've done from sources like deer and deer hunting mag and other sources state that fawns are capable of fending for themselves after 6 to 8 weeks after birth. This time of year they should be well suited to survive without the Doe.

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skee your correct after a couple months fawn deer can fend for themselves,however the common routes,feeding places,hiding places that arent learned at that time, have to be self learned not taught by the doe, decreasing suvivorbility rates.They also never experienced a winter and have to be self taught.

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Agreed, but his late in the season its pretty mutch a moot point for most. Early gun seasons start in just over 30 days. They should have a learned enough of their home territory to get by until the herds start coming together for the winter. At least the ones lucky enough to make it through their first rifle season.

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They're almost 4 months now so they should be okay. As was stated before, they're weaned by now, although you can still see them trying to nurse (typically, the female won't let them). When the dam is killed (by whatever method), they do lose some learned time opportunity but I'm doubtful it contributes to detectable population-level mortality rates. Typically, we see higher mortality rates in November when male fawns are kicked off and they wander around. As most of you know, a lone fawn in Nov. is invariably a buck and they do get harvested at higher rates than female fawns. So, to answer your question, the vast majority of 'orphaned' fawns this time of year will not die as a result of their mother being killed.

I hope people found time to go out this weekend. It was a washout here at my house.

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the fawns I saw were plenty big to survive on their own. why do you say its not ethical or moral to shoot a doe now. If one walks by me I wont hesitate to take a doe if she is with or without fawns, they are plenty big to take care of themselves now.

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I will shoot a doe with fawns, they are ready to fend for themselves by now. I have never run across a doe and a spotted fawn this time of year but I may pass if the situation comes up. I have seem a few times when the mother is shot the fawn will start to hang out with another older doe in the area. Either that or the doe I kept seeing last year had 4 fawns.

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I passed on a doe who had 2 fawns, one still had visible spots... I like to wait a few more weeks... I have plenty of time left to take a doe, and I will.. who knows, I may take a doe with fawns the next time out.. it all depends on how I feel that day.

Thanks Lou for answering questions on here again!!

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A couple years ago I shot a doe with one fawn early in the season, and for the next few weeks afterwards when I'd come thru that part of the CRP pheasant hunting, I'd jump that single fawn or look up and see it staring at me from 50 yards away. It made me feel guilty but I wouldn't hesitate to shoot an early doe again, if I had an extra permit. And I have saw fawns with spots during early bow season and I would definately pass on that doe, I'm not that meat hungry.

I do feel that those fawns will learn a lot of survival skills from their mother, like how to cross a road and where the best food sources are. In the situation we have now in the old zone 4/zone 2 lottery areas, where you can shoot only one deer, every deer counts, give those fawns the benefit of another month before gun season. Same with a big doe, they always used to be the one I'd pick out during slug season, more meat, but now that our population (according to the DNR counters) is down, I'll leave the doe that will produce twins (or triplets) and take a single doe, if I have the choice.

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