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Yes I have...repeatedly. Many don't even hunt themselves, but allow "friends" to hunt. Most of the rest, are of the "just wanna get my buck" mentality. There is one guy that is "like minded", but he has given up, due to the same reasons as me, and also no longer hunts. It "is what it is"....

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That's a shame BWB, I'm surprised that one or two didn't survive for you to kill them in 22 years. Sounds like we have pretty similar situations. I do still get excited to kill a good 2.5, but I'm sure that won't last forever. I am the youngest one on the block by about 30 years, so maybe the area will evolve in the next decade or so.
 

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You think your having fun now, just imagine that same block your hunting with older and bigger deer. If it happened there would be no turning back for you. Guarantee it..
Ignorance is bliss….


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Yep, I know you're right. Someday I think there will be the conditions for that seed to grow.
 

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That's a shame BWB, I'm surprised that one or two didn't survive for you to kill them in 22 years. Sounds like we have pretty similar situations. I do still get excited to kill a good 2.5, but I'm sure that won't last forever. I am the youngest one on the block by about 30 years, so maybe the area will evolve in the next decade or so.
Yeah...it has surprised me as well. Actually, we used to get more bucks making it to 2 1/2 back in the first 10 years or so I lived here. Now, most years it's mainly year old bucks (although this year we had a couple 2 year olds). My personal thoughts, are that the legalization of Crossbows for Archery season, has been a significant factor in the decline, as quite a few of the surrounding parcels in the section, didn't get much, if any gun pressure, due to proximity to other people's houses. When it was vertical bows only, there weren't as many hunting, and those that did hunt, were not anywhere near as efficient at killing. But I'll keep my thoughts on Crossbows during Archery season, to myself.....

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I like to hunt. Period. I like big bucks.
I am glad we have long seasons, cheap tags and plenty of deer.
I wouldn’t trade that for bigger antlers. Again, I just like to hunt. It’s a mindset. Grab a traditional bow, get out on state land and kill a doe from the ground. Try stalking. Challenge yourself, have different goals rather than antler size. You have the control to change what and how you hunt so don’t wait for some policy or rule. The satisfaction bar just keeps moving up when it comes to rack size. It’s a no win game. Be happy with what we have and get out there and enjoy it.
 

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My neighbors shot a couple small bucks that a few were letting go. When I asked them about it they said they wanted to kill something before they headed to Missouri to shoot some big ones. Makes perfect since why not spend a few thousand to hopefully shoot a big one. If they would hold out here in Michigan we have some nice deer around are area. But they are the ones building blinds and dumping bait out the day before season. I think it’s just easier to go outta state then to actually put the time and energy in Michigan.


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Yeah...it has surprised me as well. Actually, we used to get more bucks making it to 2 1/2 back in the first 10 years or so I lived here. Now, most years it's mainly year old bucks (although this year we had a couple 2 year olds). My personal thoughts, are that the legalization of Crossbows for Archery season, has been a significant factor in the decline, as quite a few of the surrounding parcels in the section, didn't get much, if any gun pressure, due to proximity to other people's houses. When it was vertical bows only, there weren't as many hunting, and those that did hunt, were not anywhere near as efficient at killing. But I'll keep my thoughts on Crossbows during Archery season, to myself.....

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We need to be like Ohio & make crossbows illegal
 

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We need to be like Ohio & make crossbows illegal

That would be the way, go back to have only the handicapped or the elderly. That way all the new Crossbows can sit next to the new Muzzle Loaders in zone 3! It's only money right?
 
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We need to be like Ohio & make crossbows illegal
Ha....Nice try! Love your sarcastic response, and I am well aware of your thoughts on Crossbows AND the Ohio regulations on their use. I'm not going to get "baited" into a debate that's already been hashed out multiple times on this forum.

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Ha....Nice try! Love your sarcastic response, and I am well aware of your thoughts on Crossbows AND the Ohio regulations on their use. I'm not going to get "baited" into a debate that's already been hashed out multiple times on this forum.

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No debate about it, legal like it or not
 

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SLP has definitely come a long way. I see bigger bucks on public land down here than I do on our private swamp in the APR zone.

If I could only get certain neighbors to stop shooting every legal buck they see and then sharing all their tags so the younger guys that kill all the bucks can keep hunting. Party hunting at its finest 🙄
 

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A lot of guys are talking about going out of state to get a big buck. My brother does this too, I get it, who doesn’t want a trophy.

Here is my opinion on that, everything is relative. A trophy in Michigan is a pass buck in Iowa. A Iowa trophy is a pass buck in Saskatchewan.

You can also divide Michigan into regions, north to south. Southern bucks tend to get bigger because of the additional protein, agriculture. Acorn crops are hit and miss, not reliable to build big racks in northern woods.

Of course, if a buck gets older it will get a better rack. Until we reduce the take of bucks in Michigan, we will have few big racks. Maybe that’s what makes a 20” 8-10 point special in this state.
I drove the 2 lane roads all the way to southern Ohio and back yesterday and never saw more than a dozen total blinds and tree stands. Michigan is like a different planet when it comes to hunting pressure.

If you're shooting bucks that are 3 or older be happy with them whatever they do or don't score.

I'll add this bit here too, TONS of nice for anywhere bucks posted here this year. people been gettinerdone for sure.
 

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IMO, anything wider than 18” with 6” tines, 8 pts. In Iowa, that would likely be laughed at.
I got a problem with that, whoever, whenever, wherever. That's when you know that the real problem is YOU not them and surely not the deer.
 
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I drove the 2 lane roads all the way to southern Ohio and back yesterday and never saw more than a dozen total blinds and tree stands. Michigan is like a different planet when it comes to hunting pressure.

If you're shooting bucks that are 3 or older be happy with them whatever they do or don't score.

I'll add this bit here too, TONS of nice for anywhere bucks posted here this year. people been gettinerdone for sure.
Absolutely spot on!
 

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Although I'm pretty sure that your post is intended to be sarcastic....in reality, it's like that in a LOT of areas in SE Michigan.

Case in point....I live on 10ac., in Livingston County, and next to my property is a 10ac., "Nature Preserve " with no hunting allowed. A creek runs through my property, and my property (and the neighboring Preserve) are both incredibly thick, nasty cover, and BY FAR the best bedding cover in the section. When I first bought the property 22 years ago, I had visions of shooting giant SLP bucks consistently....I mean, how could I "not"...it honestly is a great "looking" property.

After living here for all those years, I have come to realize that it isn't going to happen! The reality is almost NO bucks live past 2 1/2...it just doesn't happen! I've repeatedly let young bucks go, hoping that eventually one will make it to maturity, but it NEVER happens....EVER. There are just way too many small parcels surrounding me, and it seems like each one has 2-3 guys hunting it.

The attached pics, are of 2 bucks we had on the property this year, but they are representative of what we consistently get year after year. As you can see, they are "nice" 2 1/2 year olds, that have the potential to be really good bucks in another year or two. I have 28 pictures of them from this season, right up thru the morning of Nov. 15th....and none since then. If this year follows what we've seen every past year, I won't ever get another picture of either buck. This happens pretty much every year. I used to hunt behind the house quite a bit, with the belief that eventually, one would "make it", but after 22 years, I've resigned myself that it isn't likely.

I rarely hunt here anymore.....Still run cameras, but it's the same story every year.....
You thought that a 10 acre property and an adjoining 10 acre property would yield "giant SLP bucks consistently"?

But, lo and behold, year after year you only get pictures of 2.5 year old bucks until firearm season begins. And your conclusion is that crossbows during archery season are the problem?

What was the problem during the first 10 years you owned the property before crossbows were legalized?
 

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. I wish like many others here that Michigan would improve, 36 years later hunting and it never has.
In the southern MI counties we hunt everything about our experience is multiple times better than it was even a decade ago. Deer numbers are more in line with what they should be and many more older bucks are being taken (used to be 75+% yearling bucks).

Watch what comes into a high volume deer processor, look at the DNR check station reports, etc. - the evidence is overwhelming that the buck age structure of the S. MI deer herd is better than it's ever been.
 
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