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View Full Version : What County are you hunting in Michigan? What kind of deer numbers are you seeing?




TwodogsNate
03-07-2011, 04:23 PM
Just wondering what counties you guys on the MSF are hunting in and what kind of deer numbers you are seeing?

I hunt in Clare county. I still see a good number of deer despite some major doe reduction efforts a number of years ago. On a good day I can still see 30+ deer. We always seem to have a good number of 2.5 year old bucks but they disappear at 3.5 :evil: Most of the doe that I see always have at least one fawn.




unclejesse25
03-07-2011, 05:17 PM
I hunt in Lenawee county and up north in Manistee/Harrietta MI. Obviously down here in Lenawee we seen a lot of deer. On average 4 deer or more per hunt mostly in the evenings and fewer in the mornings. We shot one 3.5 year old 130" this year and we let a bunch of spikes and smaller bucks walk. I shot one doe during bow season and one more during muzzleloader. Other than that we took a total of 7 deer this year between 6 guys hunting 80 private acres. 2 bucks and 5 does.

Up north in Manistee/Harrietta out of the past 2 years I have seen a total of 5 deer. That's it. And out of those 5 deer all have been smaller does. Obviously the baiting ban has played a little role in the fact we aren't seeing any deer and the harsh winters they recieve and large amount of does that have been taken out of that DMU the past 5 years plays a big role as well. Needless to say I don't hunt up north like I used to.

dead short
03-07-2011, 05:21 PM
Huron County. Still too many.

meeee
03-07-2011, 05:29 PM
Huron County. Still too many.
Benzie it can realy depend some spots have 0 deer some you may see 3 to 10 a day its tuff I must scout a lot it changes year to year depending on the logging that usualy will help
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Falk
03-07-2011, 05:32 PM
St.Clair Co. Very low numbers.

dooman
03-07-2011, 05:40 PM
Montmorency Co. Deer numbers are down from 2008, 08-09 winter was tough. 09 season was horrible,very few deer and even fewer fawn sightings. 2010 season was a little better, at least we saw fawns which means things should get better.

Mike4282
03-07-2011, 05:47 PM
St. Clair county, Saw good numbers until gun opener then it was spotty.

wintrrun
03-07-2011, 06:33 PM
Benzie County.
Seen decent numbers of resident deer from bow into gun. After the snow got deep going into muzzie we were "infested" with them.

bhattamer
03-07-2011, 06:37 PM
Marquette county, lots o does

jimp
03-07-2011, 06:47 PM
Lebenty gazillion in Osceola.
Must have just hatched, :rolleyes: they weren't there during the seasons...at least during shooting hours.

Luv2hunteup
03-07-2011, 07:08 PM
Chippewa county numbers are improving but still on the low side. If this winter breaks up early deer numbers should be higher because of last year's good fawn crop. I'm hoping for an early green up.

Tracker83
03-07-2011, 08:22 PM
Montcalm county. Estimated deer density 93,638,946,427,973/sq. mi

Snowlover 77
03-07-2011, 08:46 PM
Newaygo County (Southern, agricultural region): A lot of deer, good numbers of bucks and does, a couple older bucks, lot of fawns. Good harvests and still good numbers all around the area.

Luce County: Low numbers, but still some deer sightings. The trail camera helps keep me going by showing they are still there. Not very many, but did see a few deer, mostly does and a couple of small spikes, but did have 3 nice mature bucks on the camera. Hunting there isn't about numbers but the experience. See what next year brings, maybe a bit better due to a mild winter again.

bigbucks160
03-07-2011, 08:50 PM
Montcalm county. Estimated deer density 93,638,946,427,973/sq. mi

Now that is funny, but doesn't come close to my part of Calhoun County.

bucko12pt
03-07-2011, 08:57 PM
Kalkaska Co. 45 sits during bow season, averaged
between 5-6 per sit.

swampbuck
03-07-2011, 09:31 PM
n/w Roscommon County. Most days From Oct 1 to Dec 31, I seen about twenty individual deer, some of them I seen 2 or 3 times..........That dont not count a "sanctuary" Where you could , looking over the owners truck, see 30 deer standing in a foodplot during rifle season.

Linda G.
03-08-2011, 07:00 AM
All deer surveys, official or not, should be done during the month of March.

Last November, and a good part of October, all I heard from people was "no deer"...my buddy and I hit a known deer wintering area on the west side of the country right before the snow at the end of the first 10 days of the firearms season, and killed two antlerless deer in two days. When the smokepole season started, he sat for about half an hour and killed another antlerless.

We never saw any antlers at all.

Now, in March, you can't go anywhere on the west side of the county without seeing deer that are everywhere-and way too many are right in front of your vehicle bumper. The eagles and coyotes have been eating well for the last week as a result.

East side of the county, no deer at all...no tracks, no nothing.

atp500
03-08-2011, 07:08 AM
Newaygo County,on the northern boundary of the southern Newaygo County dividing line. Very few sightings each of the last 3 years has been worse each year. Too many does being shot up here with the unlimited DMU 486 permits. That might be a good idea for farther south but not up here. People need to realize they can control the deer herd. Don't shoot just because that have a permit in their pocket.
Ken

QDMAMAN
03-08-2011, 07:10 AM
Eaton County. "Numbers" are over rated.:)

BigSteve
03-08-2011, 07:14 AM
Wasn't disappointed at the number of deer I saw here in Lenawee county. Getting them to cooperate is another story.

KPC
03-08-2011, 10:56 AM
Up north in Manistee/Harrietta out of the past 2 years I have seen a total of 5 deer. That's it. And out of those 5 deer all have been smaller does. Obviously the baiting ban has played a little role in the fact we aren't seeing any deer and the harsh winters they recieve and large amount of does that have been taken out of that DMU the past 5 years plays a big role as well. Needless to say I don't hunt up north like I used to.

unclejesse25:

My camp is near Harrietta also, on the Wexford/Manistee county line. Pretty much the same as what you are experiencing. Sightings have steadily gone down over the last five years or so, last year being the worst. I have other properties that I hunt in Wexford county where it is not uncommon to see 8 to 10 deer in a sitting. Wexford county seems to be VERY spotty.

Send me a PM when you get a chance...maybe we can compare notes.

KPC

maroon89
03-08-2011, 11:03 AM
Menominee County in the Yoop. During the rifle season I'd average 20 does and 2-3 1.5 yr. old bucks. Occasionally a 2.5 yr. old would sneak through as well, but not often.

Walked my property (160 acres) recently after a fresh snow and didn't see one deer track. I did see a number of yotes, fox, etc. tracks. I guess the deer haven't returned from their winter yarding grounds yet.

JBooth
03-08-2011, 11:11 AM
Hunted a few this past year:
Presque Isle- Saw 6 in 3 weekends.
Clinton county: 6-10 per sit on state land. Only saw 1 buck.
Huron county: Hunted 2 days. Saw 100 on Christmas eve (10 bucks), and 30 on the 26th.

Family hunted near Republic, MI - Marquette County - each person saw a couple every day. state land/ private

DanSS26
03-08-2011, 11:25 AM
Southern Ogemaw County. See deer every sit. Plenty of does and Sparkys. Even saw a Dewey (2.5 yo) this year.

kstout
03-08-2011, 12:10 PM
Bowhunted Mecosta cty. Deer sightings were way lower than normal, but had a very heavy acorn crop on red oaks, so the deer were spread out in the oaks. Now, with the acorns gone, the deer are returning. Drive around in the evening, with grass showing in the fields and you can count hundreds. Rifle hunt Keewenaw cty, deer numbers are on the increase there after several hard winters. Saw more bucks there in 2 weeks, than the entire bow season at home, but no mature bucks, so I didn't shoot any.

petronius
03-08-2011, 01:53 PM
Missaukee Co. about 8 miles east of Lake City and north of M-55 or 10 miles SW of Whipple's in Moorestown. There's plenty of deer, but there's also a lot of posted land and not enough hunters to pressure them on state land.

Buck Wild!
03-08-2011, 04:02 PM
Midland Co.-- Where the Ag meets the 'big woods' and numbers are declining. Bucks are getting older...I think. More people falling in love with QDM. Even some of the state landers! (mostly the local state landers) The 'deer camp' state landers still shoot most anything they see. There were senseless block permits handed out to farmers that owned 60 acre hay fields a couple years back and this put a big dent in our herd. There are some decent bucks around here every season, just seems to be fewer deer overall. Hey, DNR, the resources are all here...just looking for the brains to put it all together.;)

Newaygo1
03-09-2011, 08:54 AM
NE Newaygo Conuty;

The last 5 years the numbers have gobe way down from what they once were when I bought the property. It seem to start when they opened up the Antlerless Permits to 13K and then left them open for too long. They wanted them to be used in the AG areas in the southern half but they were used mostly in the north half of the county. We had all kinds whenn I bought the land. Bucks, Does big and small and fawns, then back in 2002 the numbers started to drop then 2006 we only had Fawns coming in maybe 2 to 5 the entire bow and fiearms season. In 2010 we had Zero Deer the entire time we were out and spent 10 days out. Each year it seem like they just disappeared. I think that too many antlerless permits for too many years started it along with the EAS and the Youth Hunts have all contributed to this. I have trail cameras set up from April till November though the last 2 years I left one out of the winter. At the end of August & begining September the deer sightings / pictures start to go down and then they are very few especially during daylight hours. Bucks in August and then they thin out and then most pictures are daylight and then by end of September they change to night time pictures. There are bucks around just not during daylight. They finally split the conuty in 2 DMU's but it was too late for my hunting. many suggested it for many years, But when you shoot 1 Antlerless Deer you are taking possibly 3 out of the next year. And when the permits when 13K took 6 weeks to sell out and at the end it took maybe 10 days something changed and these for only private land so some were using them on the public lands. I have seen and had deer carcasses stack up on the roads in thru the federal forest as well as 3 stack up in front of my gate found them during the spring like they only took the backstraps and since no one has permission to hunt my property but a few that only hunt rifle opener and early bow tells me they were shot in Federal Forest. So poaching adds to it as well. Just not what I had for the first 10 years of owning the land and last year being the worst hunting I have had tells me that the something needs to change like EAS & Youth Hunt times and cutting out more antlerless permits in the north half of the county. But that won't happen. It took 8 years for them to split the county even with the Local DNR Biogoist recommending it for years to. As well as bring back the parcel number to be able to know who is getting them but again that won't happen and the Director of the DNR Wildlife Section told me that those would just go to the county bulding and get a number which was hard to believe who would take the time to go out of their way to look one up... So again those in cahrge have a funny idea about how they work in real world...

Any way the north area where I hunt in Newaygo is way down as to seeing deer... Then add 2 Bears into the mix got a picture of them last year.

Newaygo1

stndpenguin
03-09-2011, 09:09 AM
Montcalm county. Estimated deer density 93,638,946,427,973/sq. mi

that number actually seems like it could be pretty close, since the baiting ban ive seen tons of deer, at least 20 different bucks through archery season. Then they tunnel into the ground to hide for gun.

Lost count around 70 last night in a cut down corn field.

jatc
03-09-2011, 09:24 AM
Montcalm county. Estimated deer density 93,638,946,427,973/sq. mi

Pretty close. Definitely not a lack of deer on my hunting property near Lakeview. Usually see a several 2.5 year old bucks and at least 1 3.5 year old or older per year. Saw a lot more does than normal last year.

Rut-N-Strut
03-09-2011, 02:22 PM
Tuscola County: Saw lots of does and fawns. Saw about 25+ bucks. Took 2 bucks, an 8pt and 9pt with x-bow. Took 2 does during late doe season.

muliefever
03-09-2011, 03:11 PM
Mason County- Public Land Sucks..

Had one small piece of private, Shot one doe. Passed over 20 small bucks. some repeats I am sure. It sucks, and I pray for a change!

bucksnbows
03-09-2011, 03:36 PM
Montcalm
Private.
See around 20+ bucks a year.
Last 3 years I have seen 5 bucks each year to be at least 3.5 y/o.
Always see alot of does through out a season.
Averaging 3 does a year (sometimes more never less)
Last buck I killed was in 2008.

Bambicidal Maniac
03-09-2011, 04:37 PM
Alcona County. Not exactly the place to find CBM bucks. DMU 1, 452, and 487. The bovine TB hot zone.

I saw fewer than average does. The usual almost no bucks. None older than 2.5 years old. I hunted many days on private land in farm country in woodland surrounded by corn, bean and hay fields. You know what they call a 2.5 year old buck in my county? Grandpa! :lol:

bucksnbows
03-09-2011, 06:39 PM
You know what they call a 2.5 year old buck in my county? Grandpa! :lol:

Sad isn't it.

FallDreamer
03-09-2011, 09:17 PM
Hunted in Lenawee and chippewa counties.

Lenawee i always see deer and a far number of bucks, but the numbers have been down a bit.

Chippewa i see deer not a lot but numbers are getting better. But nothing better than a nice big chocolate antlered Buck:)

Bambicidal Maniac
03-10-2011, 08:00 AM
Sad isn't it.

Yep, but I think it's getting better. My trail cam showed a beaut last year that passed through in September. Never seen again. but at least it was there.

JHMoose
03-10-2011, 11:37 AM
SW Marquette Cty.--
Saw more deer driving into/out of camp than I saw from my stand! But what I did see on stand was encouraging. I saw more does w/ 2-3 fawns than I ever have! And didnt see any wolf sign, lots of yotes though. Our total annual camp deer sightings were down, but so where our hunting hours. I would have to break it down to hours hunted to get a good number, but I havent done that yet . So far its been a mild winter with not too much snow and the temps seem to be on the warmer side this year. Hopefully spring comes quick!!

Blueump
03-10-2011, 12:35 PM
Lake County - need I say more? ;)

Hunted hard in many different places on state and federal land. Saw one solitary deer at dark during bow season (I assume it was a small buck).

During gun season I saw one doe with a fawn - almost every day, as well as a solitary doe who also came through frequently. I heard a total of about 8 shots all season and saw absolutely no other hunters. Again, all on state & federal land.

During muzzleloader season I changed my location and hunted eastern Osceola County on private land. I saw approximately 25 deer each of the 3 days I hunted and harvested a doe and a buck.

Radar420
03-10-2011, 03:28 PM
I hunt NE Osceola County. Last year I saw 156 deer total - 6 deer had antlers and I saw the same one twice. :lol:

Sure glad that I have to put into a lottery for an antlerless permit but anyone can buy two antlered deer tags over the counter:banghead3:bonk:

justo270
09-09-2011, 03:34 AM
Oceana county..grew up here and have hunted here for 22 years bow and rifle season...deer sightings have gone downhill for the past 10 years...buck to doe ratios are way out of whack...8 to 10 does to every buck...i see an average of 3 to seven deer every 3 times i sit on state or private land...i saw 30 to 40 deer all last season and shot two seven points and two does...only saw those two bucks i shot...the rest were does...hunted as much as i could after work.

westmibow
09-09-2011, 06:26 AM
I hunt Van Buren and Ottawa Counties. I have not been seeing a ton of deer, however I know they are there because I have never had so many trail camera pictures. If you are not seeing the deer you think you should be it might be because there is corn everywhere this year. That is why I am not seeing them while driving or scouting, but they are there.

old graybeard
09-09-2011, 06:31 AM
Ingham/Jackson for bow Gogebic for rifle.

bucksnbows
09-09-2011, 10:01 AM
Oceana county..grew up here and have hunted here for 22 years bow and rifle season...deer sightings have gone downhill for the past 10 years...buck to doe ratios are way out of whack...8 to 10 does to every buck...i see an average of 3 to seven deer every 3 times i sit on state or private land...i saw 30 to 40 deer all last season and shot two seven points and two does...only saw those two bucks i shot...the rest were does...hunted as much as i could after work.
Deer sightings have gone down hill yet you shot 2 bucks and 2 does. I'm guessing that things ain't too bad or you ain't too concerned.


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bucksnbows
09-09-2011, 10:04 AM
Montcalm county been seeing good numbers of both bucks and does. Passing over 20 yearling bucks each season for the past 6 seasons and shooting at least 3 does a year. Mature buck sightings are increasing with every season too.

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GrizzlyHunter
09-17-2011, 09:02 AM
Ontonagon County: ZERO deer / Square Mile. :yikes:

Been hunting there since the late 80's. Last year is the first year we never took a deer. :yikes:

It was my youngest son's first year at camp and he never saw a deer. :(

Very, very sad. Bazillions of coyote tracks, and some wolf tracks as well though.

britches
09-17-2011, 09:22 AM
Lapeer County: Tons of deer! The last few days of this early doe has let us see a couple monsters. COME ON OCT 1ST!!
Southern MI. is the new Iowa :rolleyes::evil::evil:

HUBBHUNTER
09-17-2011, 09:33 AM
Ionia county and the deer numbers are down probably 90%. I heard that CWD hit the herd in this area. ;)

sent from my rotory dial phone

radiohead
09-17-2011, 10:08 AM
Macomb Co
St.Clair Co
Sanilac Co

Numbers seems to be typical this year.

concrete519
09-18-2011, 03:31 PM
Montcalm doe population lower than 5 years ago but way better hunting see almost as many bucks as doe and many more 2.5 and 3.5 bucks. Saw 3-3.5 bucks two different times during rut last year and its rare to see less than 10 deer a hunt which is down from the 20-30 I saw when I first purchased my property 5 yrs ago also hunt northwestern Barry and Hopkins area and both have been steady over the past 5 years about perfect. And bucks are getting older at all three of my locations

bigbuckmiddaugh
09-18-2011, 07:53 PM
hunting over by barryton(mecosta) just inside isabella line. Deer numbers way down!
Last year 16 doe in field, this year 3.

they shot a LOT last year! People north, opening day shot 22 deer, 4 bucks (ouch)

Maniac-TP
09-18-2011, 08:10 PM
They just had a hunter shot and killed in barry (mecosta) like a few days ago...


=TP