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Hunter6868
LSU Fan
Lower 9
Member since Aug 2017
177 posts

Buck to Doe Ratio
Second year on my lease since moving to AR, wife and I took two nice bucks last year and I whiffed on a third with my bow. Had zero time to scout or really run cameras before leasing the place so had no idea what was there, saw plenty of doe’s and different bucks.

Fast forward to this year and my buck to doe ratio is so far out of whack. Have over 30 different bucks on camera in the 1.5-4.5 year old range and one doe and fawn. I’ve never seen anything like this. I also don’t really know what to do other than starting to take out some of the less desirable bucks missing browtines, etc. There are three bucks I’d definitely put on the wall and don’t want to burn tags on the undesireables.


TL;DR My buck to doe ratio is out of whack with bucks being damn near 20:1. What would you do?


mylsuhat
Chicago Cubs Fan
Mandeville, LA
Member since Mar 2008
47189 posts

re: Buck to Doe Ratio
Pew pew pew


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LEASTBAY
LSU Fan
Member since Aug 2007
7004 posts

re: Buck to Doe Ratio
Kill bucks only for a while.


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slinger1317
Houston Astros Fan
Northshore
Member since Sep 2005
4111 posts
 Online 

re: Buck to Doe Ratio
We have the opposite problem in SW Mississippi. Does everywhere and bucks non existent. We lay does down every time we get the chance and we still aren't seeing the bucks.


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The Last Coco
LSU Fan
On the water
Member since Mar 2009
6344 posts

re: Buck to Doe Ratio
How big is your lease? And how many cameras out? I've seen it happen where two cameras separated by less than 400 yards showed dramatically different deer until October. One captured almost exclusively bucks and the other does until the bachelor groups broke up. I wouldn't draw any conclusions until the end of this year. Its extremely unlikely what you're seeing on camera is indicative of the herd.

ETA: there's no reason to shoot the less desirable bucks. Culling has been proven to be ineffective except in captive deer populations.
This post was edited on 9/15 at 9:57 am


Hunter6868
LSU Fan
Lower 9
Member since Aug 2017
177 posts

re: Buck to Doe Ratio
Roughly 150 acres, running anywhere between 9-15 cameras.


Melvin Spellvin
Texas A&M Fan
proud dad of 2 A&M honor grads
Member since Jul 2015
1676 posts

re: Buck to Doe Ratio
your lease appears to be a central area for a buck group, get ‘em while you can before dey head out in search of doe groups elsewhere during the rut...


The Last Coco
LSU Fan
On the water
Member since Mar 2009
6344 posts

re: Buck to Doe Ratio
quote:

150 acres

Yeah I'm betting the does are just elsewhere right now. I wouldnt be concerned at all unless you experience these ratios for another year at least.

You're also small enough that you're unlikely to impact the herd dynamics anyway unless you start killing 20 deer a year or something crazy like that.


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TheDrunkenTigah
Syracuse Fan
Baton Rouge
Member since Aug 2011
16181 posts
 Online 

re: Buck to Doe Ratio
150 acres is not a big enough area to draw any conclusions about the population as a whole, or to make much of a difference in management, but I wouldn’t be looking at it as a problem. I’d be trying to figure out why the bucks prefer to summer on your property and how to make the most of it in bow season. A lot of those bucks will transition to other areas for fall but that can be well after opening day, and plenty will stay put. Find where they are traveling in and out and target those areas rather than barreling in there to find them, odds are they’re there because it’s quiet and relatively low pressure. They’ll be bedded where they can see waist high with browse close.


ABucks11
LSU Fan
Baton Rouge
Member since Jan 2012
351 posts

re: Buck to Doe Ratio
I’d hold off on shooting does this year. As others have said, hard to know with only 150 acres. “Culling” inferior bucks will reduce the mouths eating food but not affect genetics. I’d only shoot inferior bucks if you need the meat since it will be hard to affect population with only 150 acres.


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40
Outdoorreb
Ole Miss Fan
Member since Oct 2019
836 posts
 Online 

re: Buck to Doe Ratio
Did you do a legit camera survey or are you just guessing by the cameras? That really doesn’t sound accurate nor possible.

I would do a legit camera survey then go from there.


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10
AUCE05
Auburn Fan
Member since Dec 2009
32234 posts

re: Buck to Doe Ratio
Good point. We often think of our lease having an invisible boarder that deer can't leave. However, a buck will travel 20 miles for tang.


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Hunter6868
LSU Fan
Lower 9
Member since Aug 2017
177 posts

re: Buck to Doe Ratio
A lot of good thoughts here, I have worked closely with a biologist/neighbor and have had legitimate camera surveys done but as a lot of you have stated I can’t do much with only 150 acres. Last year the ratio from what I saw on camera and in person was damn near 1:1.

I’ve hunted for over 25 years and this ratio is something I just haven’t ever seen before. I guess North Arkansas is a bit different than the MS delta.

Bow season opens on the 26th here so we will see how it goes. The two biggest on the property are regular daylight visitors so far, hopefully I’ll stick one before pre rut activities kick in.


TheDrunkenTigah
Syracuse Fan
Baton Rouge
Member since Aug 2011
16181 posts
 Online 

re: Buck to Doe Ratio
quote:

Last year the ratio from what I saw on camera and in person was damn near 1:1.

I’ve hunted for over 25 years and this ratio is something I just haven’t ever seen before.


What you saw last year is probably closer to the truth, it doesn’t just change that fast. Deer are weird as hell in the summer. I don’t trust anything I see on camera before October besides that he didn’t get shot last year. Several areas of our lease get ridiculous amounts of buck pictures when it’s hot, and then it all changes when the night time temps drop.


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40
Outdoorreb
Ole Miss Fan
Member since Oct 2019
836 posts
 Online 

re: Buck to Doe Ratio
Yea, the 1:1 sounds more believable. Nature takes care of herself. There is no way it goes from 1:1 to 20:1 in one year. It’s statistically impossible.


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Warrior Poet
LSU Fan
Living Rent-Free in Baton Rouge
Member since Sep 2011
7239 posts

re: Buck to Doe Ratio
Dont just stop killing does though unless you don't have enough does per square acre in the area overall. You still want to kill does but just make it proportionate. Less does equals less new bucks.

The only way to really know whether you have enough does per square acre is to do a biologist survey and get biologist recommendations as to harvest numbers. I don't think that's realistic for smaller hunting groups so I would just go by your knowledge of the herd and make the best estimate you can.


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TaderSalad
LSU Fan
mudbug territory
Member since Jul 2014
17775 posts
 Online 

re: Buck to Doe Ratio
That doe be gettin' porked on the reg, fo sho.


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