ODFW has given me the "You lost that lovin feeling" on hunting and fishing in Oregon, and there's no blue pill to fix it...
And, I can't see killing a spike for 30lbs. of meat. Seems like a waste of the resource, IMO.Not sure how killing the young of the year (Young critters are pretty easy to kill. Be it yearling deer or ducks. It's a steep learning curve) will improve the situation.
ODFW clearly cares more about opportunity (Coincidently, their revenue also hinges on tag sales) than herd health.
You cannot kill your way out of a hole.
Interesting results from last years harvest. It appears 2421 spike bucks were harvested on the westside, an increase of close to 1700 bucks. Buck harvest over all was up on the westside. One of the predictions was that people would take a spike and this would save an older buck. This does not appear to have panned out. I have always said the weather is a better predictor of buck harvest for westside bucks and last year was a dandy it appears. What does appear to have happened was success rates were raised between 4-5% simply due to spike harvest.
Saddle Mt. unit had a 183 spike harvest, and incredible 613 forked horn harvest, decent 336 3pt, but dismal 91 4pt+ harvest.
I predict slim pickings this year.
I would imagine most hard core hunters will not view a 10% shift in harvest to younger bucks as being a positive. Other than the deer population making a recovery, it is very doubtful that the harvest level will maintain at this anomaly year we had last year. I always get a chuckle over the additive or compensatory debate, how the heck do you know which animal you are shooting? In more recent deer mortality studies, some of the graduate students are starting to change the thinking on this issue and several have stated buck harvest may actually be a additive mortality.We have been shooting spikes in Western Washington for as long as I'm aware. It has not decimated the population. District 10 covers the SW corner of the state so harvest statistics from there might be a reasonable comparison to NW Oregon. In both 2019 and 20 the harvest was 69% spikes and 2 points along with 31% three points or more. So it is likely that the 65% spike and 2 point number from SM will be typical going forward. The question is, will the increase in total harvest continue? The theory is that spikes have relatively high mortality from all causes and allowing hunters to take some will allow that to happen without having an adverse effect on the number of older bucks. Time will tell, but my experience is that there will still be mature bucks and they will still be difficult to come by for the average hunter.
It 100% is a waste. For most hunters, it is all about pulling the trigger, taking pictures, and telling their friends rather than putting in the sweat to kill a mature deer. Pretty frustrating but it is the way it is.And, I can't see killing a spike for 30lbs. of meat. Seems like a waste of the resource, IMO.
I love eating deer meat, but I get no sense of accomplishment or enjoyment out of killing a 1.5-2.5 year old deer, I feel bad about it. (Killed a young whitetail in Indiana this year, made me feel kinda bad at the end, still tasty)It 100% is a waste. For most hunters, it is all about pulling the trigger, taking pictures, and telling their friends rather than putting in the sweat to kill a mature deer. Pretty frustrating but it is the way it is.