“As I recall no one here has answered my question as to where all the large deer herds are coming from and why the hunting industry are PRODUCING DEER if its about "reduction"?. Here is one beside a few other time I asked the same question and all I got from all of you is song and dance.”
Who ever said it was just about “reduction”? Annual mass killing of deer does “reduce” existing number of deer and it is the price paid for having quality habitat and healthy quality deer, which equals “increased” deer survivability and reproductive success of more fawn births. Reduction and increase in deer herds go together. Deer population is dynamic and fluctuating, not static, Caroline. So, hunting, like animal predation, in this sense, is never a one-time deal. Very simply, when animal predation occurs, the numbers go down, but the vacuum gets filled again (increase in deer), which means more deer to predate (deer reduction), and around it goes again. Deer just don’t have that built-in control mechanism that keep the populations of cyclic critters under control. Cyclic animals can attain a peak population density within a predictable period, after which the population is more or less abruptly self-thinned by a combination of factors as dispersion, decreased reproduction, etc., while not destroying their range before their populations are reduced. This is not so with deer, whose populations can only be kept under control by eliminating the annual increment, larger or smaller. This can’t be done by their natural and efficient predators (wolves and mountain lions), so the surplus must be harvested by a method of simulated predation – the most efficient so far, for larger, free-roaming deer, happens to be regulated sport hunting. We’ve learned what happens when predators are gone or too few (for human and livestock safety, not ‘cos of sport hunters) and hunting is banned, or very limited, from events on the Kaibab Plateau, South Fox Island off mainland Lake Michigan, the Llano Basin of the Edwards Plateau in central TX, Princeton Township in NJ, and other areas. The choice we have is quality deer and habitat (which means annual killings by hunters and wild meat to eat) or no hunting (and no or too little nonhuman animal predation) with weaker, malnourished deer whose does reabsorb their embryos and have stillborns, and fawn gender adjustments to reduce deer numbers enough to live off the available, but gradually degrading habitat.
These questions of yours have been answered. There was no intent to deceive and mislead in the answers. Your challenge to those answers has been limited and refuted, and it’s your turn to re-challenge. E.g.:
Grizzly: "- lack of natural top predators in many areas. Top predators would include species such as wolves, mountain lions, and grizzlies."
CarolineTC: “Are you reading what I have written? I don't think so because you know its the hunters killing deers natural predator and is encouraged."
Natural predators of deer, such as wolves and mountain lions, are not being killed by sport hunters to produce more deer. Killing of these predators were done long ago to protect human settlements and livestock. There was commercial hunting, which has nothing to do with modern sport hunting. When hunters are encouraged to kill predators it is more often because farmers want them to, or the public feel the predators have become too close for comfort.
Also, CarolineTC: "Varmints, specifically coyotes, are the biggest threats to fawn recruitment on most land throughout the United States. "Deer Management TX"
In what wildlife context was this said: Had there been a reduction in deer over the seasons, were there coyote scat analyses done, what about wildlife management use of hunting and its effect on deer numbers and fawn recruitment, had coyote hunting/trapping been used and had it made a difference on coyote numbers, what were hunters’ views on the issue, etc., etc? In 2003, in Maine there was a debate on coyote snaring for fawn recruitment. Deer were plentiful in southern and central ME, with an estimated 20 deer/square mile. Eastern and northern parts of the state, however, had just one-fifth that density. Sometimes, statements on their own don’t explain the reason behind them. Also, what one deer management agency says for its area may not pertain to or reflect the same opinion for deer management in another area. That includes not just coyotes but also things like deer baiting and feeding plots: Just because food plots are planted for one area's deer population doesn't mean it's done everywhere. One management's policies don't necessarily represent what consistently goes on for other management policies, though each policy may be used as a management tool under certain circumstances, and how those circumstances are interpreted by different management agencies and professional and hunter input may vary from area to area, state to state. So, what goes on in one area of TX doesn’t mean it goes on throughout that State, and what happens in one state doesn’t mean every other state is doing it as well.
I don't know the situation in TX, but in my state there is hunter and wildlife management difference in opinion on the issue of coyotes being threats to fawn recruitment. We’ve had open season for coyotes, but its hunters who are suggesting that the season be closed for the summer, during pup-rearing season.
Studies do show coyotes eat deer. Whether they kill many or not is questionable. An increase of deer hair in scat occurs during hunting season. This may be caused by wounded, unrecovered deer, and offal left in the woods by hunters, as well as road kills (DVAs). Yes, coyotes will go after deer they have a high probability of killing. They can take advantage of some deer when the snow is high and limits deer mobility. It’s known they also take some fawns in the spring. Coyote scat analyses have shown that in July-August there's a lot of deer hair, even hooves from the newborn fawns. Others argue that deer numbers can go up dramatically after easy winters (not just because of hunting) and they go down just as dramatically after harsh winters, irrespective of coyotes, so coyotes are one of several factors for fawn deaths/reduction in numbers. Moreover, research shows the more coyotes you kill, the bigger the litters get and the more you'll have. Some say one would have to kill in the region of 70% are killed annually to maintain a population check. So, random killing of coyotes simply causes more rapid reproduction would make no sense to kill coyotes. So, hunters would actually better protect fawns and deer by improving the quality and quantity of deer bedding, fawning and escape cover. This would also create better habitat for rabbits, mice and other animals that are preferred by coyotes. Increasing the coyotes’ food supply would do a better job at taking the pressure off of deer.
Better deer population management, too, can reduce fawn predation by coyotes. Again, by getting a more balanced buck-to-doe ratio in the herd, coyotes would kill less fawns: When deer gender ratios are closer to a balance of 1:1, deer breeding takes place over a narrower window and fawning will occur in the same narrow time span. Coyotes are overwhelmed, eating only what they can, and with fawning quickly over, a higher fawn recruitment is the result. This is the "satiation principle" (predators are overwhelmed with potential prey in such a manner that they cannot effectively consume all the fawns before the fawning season ends) and a defensive characteristic of ungulates.
Increased range of coyotes from west to east is because humans – not sport hunters specifically – cleared and fragmented the forest and killed off the gray wolf (coyotes' competitor). For us, the eastern coyote is a relative newcomer, arriving in numbers after WW II. Again, biologists generally agree that coyotes have the ability to self-limit their numbers (unlike deer) so they don’t overpopulate the land, though people may not want to tolerate them. In the time that coyotes have settled here, our deer numbers have fluctuated, but not because of coyotes, and up and down the East Coast, deer and coyote numbers are at a high. Despite the presence of coyotes, they don’t appear to be a limiting factor as wolves and mountain lions were in the 19th century.
Yes, there have been govt subsidised aerial shoots of coyotes as part of predator control programs, again to protect livestock mainly. But, they’ve been controversial and lots of people, including hunters, don’t want an all-out aerial war or open-/all-season hunting on coyotes. There’s been debate in my state on hunting derbies of coyotes, which many hunters oppose, others not. Otherwise, farmers will enroll the help of a local hunter to perform “target specific” control of shooting the one or two coyotes that have been killing calves or sheep (and they like house cats).
Grizzly: "- increase in intensely cultivated agricultural lands in the past century. Deer are attracted to crops like corn, soy beans, and the like as an easy food source."
CarolineTC: “Must have missed the food plot parts of my comments.”
Your comment still does nothing to negate the fact that deer are particularly attracted to agricultural crops, which (among other factors mentioned) have enabled them to thrive and increase in herd size.
Like the issue of coyotes, food plots have both their opponents and detractors among hunters and wild game management, in terms of when and if supplemental feeding is appropriate or inappropriate sometimes or all the time. So, don’t assume food plots are always generally practiced in every area. Btw, in context of your claim that hunters kill predators in order to reduce competition for deer and increase the number of deer, some argue that feeding plots can increase predation because it crowds deer into a smaller area with limited network of escape trails, needed to elude predators, and deer will bed near feeding stations. It's not uncommon for predation on deer to occur within sight of supplemental feeders. So, it seems contradictory to say that hunters kill deer's natural predators to produce or have more deer to kill for hunter enjoyment, and then hunters having feeding plots which attract predators, like coyotes and bobcats, and so deny hunters from taking shots at the deer.
Also, artificial feeding doesn’t necessarily mean the deer herd size is increased. It depends on the situation, when the feeding program begins, for how many deer and what is being planted as feed. E.g., if the winter is unusually severe, or when it becomes essential to preserve the nucleus of a deer herd rather than restocking them in the event they are wiped out. Also, energy food such as corn isn’t that nutritious and can reduce cellulose digestibility (available foods high in cellulose is what deer will eat in winter), and because lots of other smaller animals compete for the corn, the deer end up eating rather little of it. Supplemental feeding of protein and fat may be another matter.
Grizzly: “"- the expansion of the suburbs. Deer are attracted to vegetable gardens, flowers, bushes, certain tree species, etc. found in suburban yards. Many places that are now suburbs were once rural deer habitat, but the deer do not leave. This is especially true in the heavily populated east coast.
- in many areas where deer population is considered high, there are private lands that are closed to hunting"
CarolineTC: “What happens is deer seek refuge from gunshots and terrorist in the forest and that is why you find deer where there are no hunting. Hunters created large deer herd then start killing them each season and deer do not want to stay around where there is danger.”
The deer would still increase even if there were no hunting danger. The difference is that over time deer habitat would become so degraded that the deer may not survive because the land can’t restore itself because of deer’s habits. Because deer need to have their populations controlled via acute deaths, which can only come from nonhuman predators or a bullet/arrow and in combination with harsh winters. Embryo reabsorption, abortion and stillborns, or having single fawns vs twins and gender ratio adjustments won’t help control deer population in time.
While deer may seek refuge from gunshots and forest “terrorists,” they would thrive on posted land because there’s no predation or nobody to shoot them. That’s the answer (together with other factors mentioned) to your question as to why deer herds increase. Whether deer seek refuge or stay where the danger is, they don’t take their population census and don’t take vows of chastity – they continue to reproduce, whichever way, and more so when habitat is maintained in quality by hunting. As said, and which you may not fully grasp, being a species adapted to (and because their populations are largely controlled/’balanced’/kept in check by) predation, deer by biologic cannot maintain a relative stable population without predation/when predation is removed.
Grizzly: "- poorly thought-out deer hunting regulations/management that does not encourage the culling of enough females from the population. Many state wildlife agencies are now starting to realize that this is a factor and are adjusting their management strategies accordingly. " GB
CarolineTC: “again you did not read my comment clearly because it even talks about doe hunting to create more male fawn birth and its been "poorly thought-out" for very long time because they are not about long term deer herd reduction is that so hard for you to understand? What part of my comments did you miss?”
You don’t seem to get it. This is an issue of management policy for a particular area, which in no way proves that hunting is an ineffective management tool. Deer hunting management and regulation programs have to be constantly/seasonally readjusted. What works one season may not work the next season, because other (hunting and nonhunting) factors (e.g., weather and nonhunter-induced landscape changes that cannot always be predicted when planning hunting policies) affects seasonal and long-term deer population numbers and fawn gender ratio. The point of hunting as a management tool is not simply to keep deer numbers down, or to keep them up. Rather, it is the continuation of sustainable quality deer population that can survive within the limitations of their (quality) habitat.
Doe hunting to create more male fawn births is needed when there are a disproportionate number of females or too few males. Can’t you comprehend that? Buck harvests are indicators of population growth, I think. But, one doesn't want numbers of deer at the expense of habitat quality and, therefore, deer quality. Harvests must change from year to year, depending on both hunting and nonhunting factors. Again, the point is not increasing or reducing deer or certain gender of deer per se, but maintaining a healthy deer population (which can sometimes accommodate more male fawns for a season or two) – meaning also a healthy forest.
Grizzly: "- a declining number of hunters because of today's highly urbanized/suburbanized society"
Caroline: “More reason the time has come for using IC wildlife contraception.”
IC wildlife birth control can have an important place, with limited application in urban/suburban society’s deer. As discussed above.
As traditional sports hunters age and hunting tradition is passed on to ever fewer children who could replace hunters who drop out and die off, as well as people living farther from wildlife areas than in the past together with the influx of new people coming in that didn't grow up in a rural environment and weren't exposed to hunting, people spend more time indoors on computers and watching t.v., or outside at organised sports, and increasingly use public and private land for ‘nonconsumptive’ activities (hiking, walking, camping, wildlife viewing, e.g.)
The point is that there is a decline in the number of people being taught hunting or wanting to be hunters as a result of modern living/urbanisation/surburbanisation (in addition to other nonhunting factors mentioned), the deer have been able to increase in herd size – this was your original question, why deer herd have increased.
CarolineTC: "Again you did not read my comment about the "1,000 dollar a deer" lies from the hunting industry. …"
No lies from the hunting industry. You either jump to conclusions because of being blinded by hate, and/or you overlook what they mean by the "1,000 dollar a deer" remark. E.g., http://deeralliance.com/index.php?pageI ... ticleID=78
: "In wild deer this tagging requires capturing and sedating each deer. So while the vaccine might cost as little as $10 a shot, the injection of the deer typically costs $500 to $1000 per shot." It seems quite clear what's being said: The vaccine may cost a few dollars a piece, but the labour costs on top of it increases the price per deer.
CarolineTC: "Overall Mr. Grizzly you have no answered much of my questions instead it was ignored because you have repeated that has already been refuted."
But, Grizzly has refuted. You've not challenged what's been said.