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swedishpimple

I think the deer will die this winter.

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It has been pretty cold here in Northern Minnesota. I laugh at clowns on the Twin Cities news complaining about single digits above or below, when I keep waking up to -30 like today.

Now we have had multiple -20 to -30 days and the snow is getting deep. I think the deer in the Northwoods may struggle. My early prediction is for a huge swing from 5 intensive harvest tags to 1 lottery tag.

Are we best off having the DNR play with numbers or just wait for Mother nature to wipe them out with a cold winter?? It may depend on how many deer we want to run over on the roads with an unchecked population.

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The DNR can only regulate for what the population we have now and do what is best for the future. The cannot, however, manage for the weather. Deer are tough critters. However, I too think that the deer will suffer this winter. Might not be a bad idea to invest in some feeders if you are able. The snow doesn't look like it is going to let up anytime soon and I think that plays a much bigger role than the cold.

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Time to bring back the winter severity index. We're overdue, that's for sure. 20" of snow across much of MN already. I put a feeder up along with 2 cameras on our hunting property on Saturday. They're already talking another big storm for this weekend. I did hear a warmer than average February predicted though. We'll see...

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It is early but with the early cold/snow it is shaping up to be a tough winter. At least I got in a few food plots in my woods and the snow isn't too deep down there yet.

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I hunt area 172. They have given out bonus tags for quite a few years now. I think they should have gone without them this year. My group got lucky this year and did really well, however, almost everyone else I talked to up there didn't do so well, and now what is looking to be a tough winter I think we had our last good year of deer hunting for awhile. Talked with the wildlife biologist up there and he said to expect lottery for next year. last winter they when they did there ariel (sp) survey they counted 40 percent less deer from the pervious year

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I don't think the DNR wants us feeding the deer. They have gone on record in the local press here several times advising against it. Feeding or baiting allows nose to nose or nose to mouth relationship which is part of the problem allowing the spread the CWD (Chronic Wasting) and Bovine TB.

Some people in the state may not care but several Northwestern counties have lost their TB Free status and some really don't want it to spread.

I also know that within the City Limits of Bemidji there is an ordinance against feeding.

I do what I can with food plots...but I will not be out there filling troughs.

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I find it funny that people here that complain about the deer herd and buck to doe ratio are promoting feeding the deer.... crazy

If ya want what you want (better ratio) you should let nature take care of it for you.

Feeding is only going to help keep a lot more does alive.

Survival of the fittest!

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Those bucks that have little or no fat on them from running during the rut are going to die first. How is that going to help the deer population?

How is having less deer in general going ot help deer hunting in Minnesota? 95% of the people on here that are in favor of QDM, are in areas where there is a very abundant deer population. If we have less deer, its obvious that any thoughts of QDM are going to go out the window and we will be back to trying get a healthy deer population again, which is part of QDM. Maybe some of us don't want to have to go that route again.

As for feeding, I'd bet that if it came down to feeding or a massive winter kill, the state and groups start feeding. If it came down to keeping more does alive, I would.

It sounds like you are implying that a winter kill would be a good thing, that way we wouldn't be talking about QDM any more and we can go back to shooting one deer every couple of years.

I guess I would take any type of restriction on antlers and seeing multiple deer than not seeing any at all.

Note from admin, please read forum policy before posting again, thank you.

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Has CWD been found in any deer in MN? I know TB hasnt i kinda get sick of people saying that when it hasnt been found in mn. Dont feed the deer or they will spread something. Dont send you kids to school cause who knows that they could get there think about that one.

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I don't think the DNR wants lots of things, but that is Not going to stop me from feeding Deer on my land. I Left corn standing and throw out some supplements off and on.

This, nose to nose or nose to mouth relationship hype just isn't cutting the mustard.

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Time to bring back the winter severity index.

It actually never went away. The Index is measured by combining the number of days below zero with the number of days there is 15 or more inches of snow on the ground.

Readings between 100-180 are considered moderate.

Here is a spreadsheet from last year: http://files.dnr.state.mn.us/outdoor_activities/hunting/deer/wsi_spreadsheet08.pdf

Taken from the DNR HSOforum:

Research has shown that deer have the ability to withstand very cold temperatures. Deep snow is the most critical factor with 15 inches as the threshold. Extended periods of deep snow combined with cold temperatures, especially in mid to late winter, lead to deer mortality. It is estimated that about 10 percent of the deer herd typically dies in an average winter.

Fawns (less than 1 year old) are the first to starve or be killed by wolves or other predators, as they are the most expendable part of the herd. As the WSI increases to a level of 140 or higher, increased adult buck mortality is expected. Adult does are the best prepared to withstand a severe winter in the Northland, one of nature’s way of perpetuating the species.

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Managing Bovine Tuberculosis in Minnesota’s Wild Deer

Board of Animal Health: Current Updates

Background

Since 2005 bovine tuberculosis (TB) has been discovered in 11 cattle operations in northwestern Minnesota. The strain is consistent with bovine TB found in cattle in the southwestern U.S. and Mexico.

The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR) conducted surveillance for the disease in hunter-harvested deer within a 15-mile radius of the infected farms every fall since 2005. To date, the disease has been confirmed in 18 free-ranging deer, and eight deer sampled this winter are suspects for the disease and await final test results. All infected deer have been adult animals and were taken within five miles of a cluster of four bovine TB-infected cattle operations.

Because of these discoveries, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) downgraded the state's bovine TB status from "free" to "modified accredited advanced" in 2006. As a result, cattle producers across the state face mandatory testing of cattle and restrictions on cattle movement.

The discovery of additional bovine TB-infected livestock operations, as well as the increased number of infected wild deer, has resulted in the state dropping another level in status to "modified accredited" in 2008. The DNR is committed to assisting the Minnesota Board of Animal Health (BAH) in regaining the state's bovine TB-free status.

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Wow! We've had less than 3 weeks of cold and less than 2 weeks with snow deeper than 15 inches in most of the state and guys are sounding the horn to save the deer. The deer are fine.

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Those bucks that have little or no fat on them from running during the rut are going to die first. How is that going to help the deer population?

Your statements are ignorant. How is having less deer in general going ot help deer hunting in Minnesota? 95% of the people on here that are in favor of QDM, are in areas where there is a very abundant deer population. If we have less deer, its obvious that any thoughts of QDM are going to go out the window and we will be back to trying get a healthy deer population again, which is part of QDM. Maybe some of us don't want to have to go that route again.

As for feeding, I'd bet that if it came down to feeding or a massive winter kill, the state and groups start feeding. If it came down to keeping more does alive, I would.

It sounds like you are implying that a winter kill would be a good thing, that way we wouldn't be talking about QDM any more and we can go back to shooting one deer every couple of years.

I guess I would take any type of restriction on antlers and seeing multiple deer than not seeing any at all.

Just keep stirring the pot Brule.

What has the DNR been promoting for years????? Kill more does!

What do QDM folks want????? A more equal buck to doe ratio!

What part of the deer herd is highest????? Does!

I can only assume that by feeding deer the majority of the deer that will utilize this feed are the does, being that the majority of the deer out there are does.

A healthy herd is a smaller balanced herd, a FITTER herd! How do you increase a deer herds fitness, by taking out the weak!

So in a way, yes, I guess I am hoping for somewhat of a winter kill. For the benefit of the deer herd, not my own selfish wants!

Note from admin, please read forum policy before posting again, thank you.

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yeah I would have to agree with that... kill the weak and sick. wolves do a great job doing that as well. I would probably think that is why we haven't been affect by that chronic wasting. TB was getting to be a problem a few years ago but haven't heard much about that lately.

yup IMO wolves and cold = stronger deer heard

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I also do not agree with feeding deer. nature can take care of itself... I don't even think that the DNR should be as involved as they are.

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The first thing that I would like to say is that I respect everyones opinions and I enjoy reading peoples posts. With that said, I would have to agree with BuckKiller's statements when he says "nature can take care of itself" and "IMO wolves and cold = stronger deer heard".

I don't understand what deer hunters have against wolves. They naturally cull the herd. I also find it funny hearing people complain about the harsh winter weather. There is not much we can change about the weather. This winter is doing nothing but shaping up to be a "NORMAL MINNESOTA WINTER".

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...I would have to agree with BuckKiller's statements when he says "nature can take care of itself" and "IMO wolves and cold = stronger deer heard".

I don't understand what deer hunters have against wolves. ... This winter is doing nothing but shaping up to be a "NORMAL MINNESOTA WINTER".

I agree. We've been lucky the last few winters. This winter is NORMAL!!!

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