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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
This is not a question to start a fight! I served for 5 yrs because I believe in our right to choose.

Why do so many of my fellow hunters feel so strongly against baiting deer?

We hunt bears with bait and dogs. In the deep woods of Canada, they hunt with bait, we have some similar areas here.

I understand that baiting around farm land (or other areas where patterning deer is easier do to geographical/terrian type) may be taking some of the work out of it. I don't believe that to be true in all cases. However, where I hunt, deep back in stateland cedars, I know of no one that doesn't bait. I grew hunting this same area and did not bait until later in life. I know hunting both ways (farmland w/o bait and deep woods w/ bait). I find hunting deep woods with bait to be more challanging then hunting farm counrty or around food plots.

Don't take this wrong, I'm not attacking any method of hunting that puts bucks in front of a hunter. It's just been my experience that hunting over bait does't make a guy lazy, unethical, a nonwoodsman, or a poor deer hunter.

I still set stands early, scout heavily for travel route/bedding/food, play the wind, and all the other thing necassary to see mature bucks. I just also hump bait 1/2 - 3/4 mile back into swamps.

I guess guys I just dont see the problem with placeing some carrots out in front of me to get a deer to pass within range, especially when 5 yards too far puts the deer behind 10 cedars.

Am I alone in thinking that baiting is ethical?

This inner conflict between sportsman really troubles me.

Good luck all next season.
 

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I don't think baiting is "unethical" but I just choose not to do it. I don't look down on anyone who uses it and I even keep my dad and brother's bait piles fresh. It's just a matter of preference and no one should feel pressured to not bait.:)
 

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Say My Name.
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Joshua, I notice that you've got about 20 posts, and I welcome you.

Regardless of how this thread develops, if you are interested in folks' opinions on baiting for deer, you may want to utilize the "search" function. There have probably been over a hundred threads which largely were discussions about the pros and cons of baiting. It would probably be tough to come up with an original comment not contained in any of them.
 
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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Horseman,

I wish we all had that thought process. With so much against the hunter these days, I'm afraid I might not get a chance to bring up my little boy the may I was brought up.
 
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Farmlegend,

I figured this was an old topic. I was checking out a lot of threads today and came across one where every responce was anti- baiting. Seriously, it hit home. First time I guess that I heard so many speak so strongly against it.

Yah I know, I've been asking alot of questions and jumping in on others. You can see I'm kind of new here. I have only one buddy that I don't bore to death with hunting talk. He's a hunt freak like me (you Marco). I have really enjoyed this forum that puts me with others like me.

This is good!
 

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Welcome aboard Josh!

I think I responded to another post of yours recently and may have welcomed you there. As the Legendary Farmer mentioned, the baiting topic has come up here many times. It is one that brings out some emotion on both sides of the issue. If you happen to read threads where members get personal with each other, insult-wise, please ignore those and don't emulate the angry rhetoric...........LOL!
 

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Joshua,
You raise a very good question, and as the others have said, it's been beaten to death many times on this site.

We can argue all day about ethics, and whether it's tougher to hunt with or without bait. We chose not to bait where I hunt. Just wasn't our cup of tea. I grew up "still hunting" which is a form of stalking, and I wouldn't feel right about sitting in one place all day. But bottom line......as long as baiting was a legal method of hunting, you had a right to do it. No one should question that. Whether the bait gives you an unfair advantage is anyone's opinion.
 

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With the current baiting restrictions that are in place, I really don't see much harm in putting out bait. When you're only putting out 2 gallons at a time, you're not "pulling" deer in from surrounding areas. These are deer that are already in the area just stopping by to grab a quick snack. Now before the restrictions, we used to see neighboring camps bring in "semi-loads" at a time. Now that will screw things up. But to each his own, as long as it falls within the description of the law.

just my .02


nymph
 

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One other thought about this topic before I move on. Baiting, in my opinion, was an off-shoot of the gain in popularity of bow hunting. I'm not sure how old you are Joshua, but when I was a youngster coming up in the 60's, bow hunting was very new, and few of us bowhunted. I started to bowhunt and used similar methods as I did gun hunting (stalking). This was not a very successful way to bowhunt if you wanted to get a deer, although I had some luck. As bowhunters became more knowledgable and sophisticated, the hunting methods changed drastically. Tree stands, compound bows, and baiting became the norm for the sport. Having gun deer hunted since the 60's, I can tie the advent of baiting to the increase in popularity of bowhunting. I think we all agree that if you can get a deer close, and have it relatively still, your chances of a clean, efficient bow kill go up dramatically. So baiting was a natural fit for bowhunting. Then baiting started spreading into the gun hunting crowd, and that's where it all spun out of control (IMHO). I know of one camp in Alcona Co. where they were bringing in semi-trucks full of corn and beets in late summer to attract every deer in the county to their property. That's extreme, and I think that's where things got out of hand. If the DNR had instituted a regulation in the 70's limiting baiting/feeding to a two-gallon limit, we may never have had to eliminate baiting. But too many of what I'll call "deer greedy" sportsman ruined it. Again, ethics are what we each believe they are.
 

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To bait or not to bait! That is the question.

We as sportspersons have big battles with all sort of anti groups out there. The biggest problem I have with baiting is the fact that we fight with each other about the subject.

We should respect the bait hunters as we should respect and support the dog hunters. If we can not support each other whether it is our method of hunting or not we are in trouble.

I have said it before and I stand by my opinion, they will start with baiting bans, move to dog hunting bans and will not stop until they have banned the taking of game completely.

I do not trap, but I will fight adimentally for the trappers, I fish very little but will support the people that fish. One issue that goes on trial you may say on tuesday "the dove hunting bill" I personally do not hunt doves but I am doing everything I can to support the hunt.

I am asking all non- bait hunters to help the bait hunters and all non- dog hunters to to help support the dog hunters. We can give not one type of hunting up to the anti everything radical groups. We in Michigan have big challenges ahead " A Govenor that does not respect the sportspersons" although she likes or money. And the fighting amongst us MUST STOP!

Read some of the wise and informed members of this board such as Linda G. and you will truly understand that every battle is everyones battle.

Keep your it is not ethical to bait opinion just that, only your opinion and the it is not ethical to chase a Bear with a dog opinon just that your opinion. Rather than spend time telling fellow sportspersons they should do it your way spend your time protecting our future as sportsperson.

Alright, I am done!

Michael S. Vander Mey
Sportsperson for everyone and everything.
 

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Just for fun, substitute the words turkey or ducks for deer in these posts. How would you feel if the hunters in the next 40 acres over were baiting turkeys and you weren't or the guys 500 yards down the shoreline were baiting ducks infront of their blind and you couldn't? Would it be good old fashioned "choice" then? In a way, it's like the Superbowl/Janet debate. The people that are for cultural decay and see nothing wrong with a S&M ghetto show representing America to the world say "it's your choice to watch TV, just shut it off if you don't like it". Well, the burden "choosing to shut it off" shouldn't be on the majority who don't care for it. Just my .02
 

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Here's a real pet peeve of mine.

Framing an argument such that those that advocate a change from the status quo are "divisive", or somehow doing the anti-hunters a favor.

I see this tactic used by guys that defend baiting, Traditional Deer Management, and even legal, but questionable hunting behavior (hunting from vehicles on roadsides, emptying the magazine at running deer, having hounds intenionally run roughshod over property where there is no permission for legal trespass, hunting on property boundaries without discussing with neighboring landowner, etc.).

Aside from any of these issues, to state that hunters with a different view are giving ammo to the antis is, at its very best, an impersuasive tactic.

The real threat to hunting comes not from anti-hunters, but rather from the perceptions of hunting emanating from the vast non-hunting majority.
 

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Welcome to the site, Joshua, glad you found us.

Baiting is legal in this State and unless people are moving to ban it, I don't think there should be any negative things said about it.

My personal opinion is it should never have been started. The State will have a hard time eliminating bait in less than three generations of hunters because there are many that never did it any other way. The can of worms is tipped over now and time will tell if the mess can be cleaned up.

When it comes to an ethical question, that's easy. If it's legal, I'll never look down on anyone that plays by the rules.
 
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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
I just typed a 2 page response to all that has been said. Afterwards I read it to be sure I threw no insults or miss quoted anyone. Then it hit me, no one mans opinion really matters here because opinions on this topic differ a great deal. So I erased it.

I'm going to leave this conversation with 2 things in mind.

1) It doesn't seem like people hate baiting as much as they hate others intrusive use of it.

2) We, the hunting community, better learn to support one another quickly. For if we do not, our children won't be able to enjoy the past time that has given all of us so much pleasure.

Good luck to all in 2004 (no matter how you choose to hunt).
 

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JOSHUA welcome to the boards.

Personally when I find myself agreeing with FARMLEGEND I really have to wonder about myself. J/K FARM (we go head to head alot it seems)

Really you hit the nail on the head though. It's not using bait that most have a problem with it is the intrusive overbaiting that is the very problem.

If everyone stayed within the limits of baiting regulations then this would in fact be a mute point. I myself use limited bait with conjunction of food plots.

As I hunt in a very sand ridden place the food plots are coming slowly and the use of bait has made it somewhat more usable. However once the land is finally up to speed and can grow ags with good results I probably will also go to the I don't use bait side of the debate. But I remember the days I used it heavily.
 
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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Bunji,

What county do you hunt in that has the sandy soil?

Is the food plot comming along slow because of the soil type or something else?

I just purchase land in Roscommon and plan to put in food plots. I ask these questions just to gather info.
 

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JOSHUA northern Chippewa county.

The soil there is either good growing soil or it's sand.

I unfortunately got sand. Playbox sand mor or less lots of sugar sand there.

But with some helpful work from Ed Spinazzola we should be able to get it up to snuff now in around 3 to 4 more years.
 
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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Bunji,

Is Ed working with you personnally or are you using his book?

I have the book and have found it to be very informative. I figured that I would kind of fumble my way thru developing the plot, but after ready the book, I feel like I can make it happen withouy much waste. I hope!
 

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Through the book primarily.
However I had a chance to meet him at a seminar during the hunting times expo in birch run. He gave me his Email addy and said anytime I have a question drop him a line.

The book is a great working point and the start I had made was ineffective in what was planted and what the yield was. After talking to him he suggested certain vegetation to start with to help build soil composition faster.

He made some suggestions in how much fertilizer and lime to work with as I am using an 8N and tiller to turn the soil with. Seems I have been under developing the soil from not enough lime and fertilizer.

I was told "Oh yeah Biologic will grow there no problem" guess what I grew barely anything other than rye the first two years. Now I have a good plan to work with so I can get a soil to start planting the good stuff in.

I'll get my soil samples sent in this year and work from there. But it's looking like another 3-4 years before I can get to working with the less tolerant vegetation.
 
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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Sounds like you got it under control. I can't wait to start cutting at my place.

I plan to cut a 70 yard x 14-16' wide lane through some real thick cedar on the property. I want to set up a real nice elavated stand there that will be left alone during bow season. My plan is to have my aging father-in-law hunt with me during rifle and I want him to be real comfortable. During muzzle loader, myself or another could use it than.

I also want to put in an 1 - 1 1/2 acre plot at the corner of where my cedar (approx. 40 acres) connects to a cattail/open marsh swamp (approx. 40 acres). The area I thinking of will be great for bow becauce it positions well for prevailing winds and trail routes from bedding areas.

I'm so anxious to get started. However, the snow is over 2.5 ' deep now with drifts in the road approx. 3.5'. I guess I gotta wait for the thaw.

Good luck with the plot! I'll talk to you again sometime.
 
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