zone 12 revamping (any truth to it?)

Discussion in 'Deer Hunting' started by BIG DOG, Dec 9, 2012.

  1. BIG DOG

    BIG DOG Member-2018 Spring Team Turkey Contest Winner

    i heard they are going to include layfette county and possibly the western 1/2 of columbia and nevada counties in with miller and little river. i do know the numers seem to be down in this part of zone 12, and according to people who have hunted the camp and area im on now have said the past 3 years its been declining in total numbers but buck quality has gone up some.

    this is my 1st and last yr to hunt layfette county (i dont do the deer camp thing sorry) but in all my yrs of deer hunting (32total-30 by myself) i have never seen it like this, i don't know that i ever went a day or 2 in a row without seeing a deer. i would support a reduced number of deer (i try to put 4-5 in the freezer), limited doe hunts, what ever it takes to get it right, im for it.

    our camp has killed 3 deer total since the 1st 10days have ended, only 1 was a buck and it was my nephew's spike. I have not seen a legal buck deer since muzzle loading and does during the youth hunt. but, i saw deer all weekend at my cousins lease in west-central part of columbia county, granted the deer have not been pressured since my cousin basically quits hunt'n when duck season starts

    what's ya'lls take on the zone modification and the deer numbers?
  2. OuachitaMtnMan

    OuachitaMtnMan Well-Known Member

    I'm sure numbers are down but Im not sure that they're not closer to what the agfc considers healthy herd numbers. I know what you wrote is almost word for word a good description of the herd we have in the hills. You can go days without seeing a deer, seeing 10 or so in a day is above average I would say but when you see one, it could very well be a good buck. I would say the herd has been too big down south, especially with the does, and that agfc's increased bag limits the last couple of years are starting to even out the buck to doe ratio. I also understand that this could be perceived as a problem to folks that arent trophy hunters and like to hunt in south arkansas so they are guaranteed to see deer and most likely see a bunch of deer with the occasional really good deer.

  3. It's the weather.....last night I had a huge brush pile burning so I went running around trying to find a beaver to kill. The deer were everywhere!!!!! I had one guy that got in his stand Saturday in shorts.....the whole season has been random weather.
    Coming home from Ouachita county to Garland county I have to be on the watch at night because they are already looking for food there or traveling.
    The same question has been asked so many times in the past and come the winter people usually shut least those that go back to the woods after the second week of gun deer season....Heck this weather has even made me not want to move in the daylight!!!!
  4. DufferDan

    DufferDan Well-Known Member

    Hunting there always slowed drastically after Thanksgiving from 1972 until present.
    Besides, in the Columbia and Lafayette counties, there is zilch - nada nothing for deer to eat after the first freeze and the acorns are gone....
    As I recall, the poaching in Columbia county and Lafayette county used to be rampant.....maybe still is....remember the Kelly case in Columbia county.. He sold approx. 400 to the Feds in 6 months. Got slammed and stated he was going to leave that area anyway because the 2 guys south of him ( south of airport ) were killing more than he was.
    I hunted there 30 years and agree,.... Something needs to be done...
    So if we need better enforcement, the hunters have to help.
    If not then new rules...
    what's ya'lls take on the zone modification and the deer numbers?
  5. Hēlim

    Hēlim Well-Known Member

    Zone 12
    The heard has decreases drastically at my lease in Willow the last 3 years. I have one particular stand in an oak flat with a corn feeder that would have a regular heard of 12 does. A long with this heard was the random bucks. It was common to see 15 deer per sit and get a couple thousand pictures a week on camera. Same stand, feeder, and camera set up and I haven't had a single doe use it all year. I have had some bigger bucks (for zone 12) on camera this year. Judging from my trail cam ratio (5 cameras on this lease) I honestly believe my lease has more bucks than does. When I say bucks, I am including spikes and the other non shooter deer as well.
  6. jjarvis0007

    jjarvis0007 Well-Known Member

    Our lease is around Buena Vista. It's 1200 acres and only 6 deer have been shot on it all year. I believe 3 were bucks. The hog numbers are outrageously high. They were killing some before season but haven't in awhile. Everything here lately with the weather has been moving at night. Out of 10-12 total deer seen those 6 were part of them. Somethings up.
  7. Up until this yr I could count on 1 hand the times I sat my roadstand and didnt see a deer, alot of them are stirrin at nite. The major feedin period has been after dark for the last week.....
  8. Dallas County

    Dallas County Active Member

    We hunt near Dalark in Dallas County and have always had tons of deer. I started noticing declining numbers of the last few years, but this year is terrible. We are seeing few doe and very few shooter bucks. Drought? Poaching? Liberal bag limit? It is not good.
  9. I hunt down the road in Sparkman and we have been logged heavily numbers may be lower but the number/size of bucks is WAAAY up for our area....may not see as many deer.....only thing I would like to see is modern gun season that matches zone I know some ain't concern bout trophy's and I don't blame them but that's what I've seen......I got a stand that I let my other camp members use cause I never seen a single deer off it.......3 bucks been killed off it this season......shows what I
  10. BIG DOG

    BIG DOG Member-2018 Spring Team Turkey Contest Winner

    i wouldnt gripe and trying not to, but when i don't have a deer on camera even at night, nor does any of the fellow members, and you talk to camps that surround us and they aint pulling the trigger or there camera's arent seeing anything either it got me concerned. i don't mind dropping down to 4 especially with 3 of us hunting.
    as far as the poaching, i remember that case.
    my brother in law has plenty of deer on his place,and like i said my cousin's place has deer BUT he has a great acorn crop this yr some of the biggest whiteoaks i've seen in yrs. he also does a lil'bit of management but not intense. and there also west central and south central part of columbia county and the deer get more abundant the further east you go. my BIL counted 80 on his way to work in eldorado one morning, during the same week around the same time he had to goto texarkana for work he counted 5, you ride the back roads between stephens, mt holly and over towards smackover you need dozer blade to push em out of the way,you ride to mcneil and go west towards waldo-lamertine, rosston-willisville and bodcaw and then back towards stamps lewisville you dont see that many. i talked to 2 guys today that hunt in lewisville, they said there camp has shot 6 deer on 2500ac lease.

    don't get me wrong i'm not going to shoot every doe that walks in front of my stand, but i like watching em it keeps your interest up and makes the day go by

    i think a 2 or 3 doe to 1 buck ratio i a decent number (i know 1 maybe 2 does to 1 buck is perfect but when you dont seen enough deer to get a good ratio something needs to be done)

  11. You want the 15/18 rule in zone 12?

  12. +1 just for hunting at Willow.
  13. I hunt zone 12. Would love to have 15/18 inch rule. Should be a statewide rule already. And the amount of tags is excessive. Most households have more than one hunter. So at least 12 tags per house. No family can eat that much deer meat. So what are they really doing with them? If they can't afford to feed there family's they prolly need to go to work not the deer stand. Jmho
  14. How many deer are ya'll killing that will meet the rule at this point?
  15. We have over 2000 acres and been about 12 to 15 bucks killed so far. I only know of 4 that would for sure meet 15/18 rules. I understand that implementing this rule would decrease our buck harvest immediately but in the future we would all gain from it.
  16. It will significantly decrease your buck harvest overall...... and many bucks in zone 12 will barely make it if ever IMO.

    If AGFC does anything they'll go to a 12/15 rule more than likely for zone 12.
  17. for the record I can afford to feed my family, but we LOVE deer meat, smoked, fried, grilled, stew meat, etc. we are family of 4. We had 5 in the freezer last year and were out of deer meat by July. I promise you there are people that can eat that much meat I hunt in 12 also and this had been a crummy year to say the least.

  18. 5 deer may not really be all that much meat....... average doe around here will only weigh 90lbs or so on the hoof.

    As far as a bad deer season AGFC is stating that around 6,000 deer per year are being killed in many zone 12 counties....... it is a deer factory but not an unlimited resource.
  19. You are right. 12/15 is prolly more realistic in zone 12. Just gets old when every "lagal" buck that hits the skinning shed is a 8 in wide 6 point. People don't understand. Shoot a mature doe before you knock off a young immature buck. Heck you will get more meat from her anyways.
  20. Your club could always adopt a 4 point rule........ do that and limit your pressure some and you will see a difference.... all without taking all the fun out of it.