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Old 03-18-2017, 07:59 AM   #1
Buckladd
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Southern Zone Antler Restrictions

'Not an Adirondack topic (yet) but this would effect anyone who hunts in the Southern Zone.

http://adkhunter.com/2017/03/legisla...southern-zone/
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Old 03-18-2017, 08:41 AM   #2
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Every hunter would like to get a wall hanger but is the aim of this new law targeted towards the hunter's ego or towards conservation?
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Old 03-18-2017, 11:01 AM   #3
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Every hunter would like to get a wall hanger but is the aim of this new law targeted towards the hunter's ego or towards conservation?
Fur will fly about this topic!

The bill alleges that the voluntary harvest restriction does not work and that legislation is required to promote horn hunting over game hunting.

As an instructor I know that almost every student in my courses is there for the privilege to participate in the wild game/hunting lifestyle and for the opportunity to harvest a deer for food. I have not had one student tell me that they want a license so that they can hang a rack on the back of the house..ever...
Hunters do become horn obsessed and and in many cases feel that their obsessive behavior should become a mandate. A friend of mine has not taken a deer in 5 years because he hasn't seen one with a big enough rack!
I don't feel that way. I will admit that I am very particular when I bow hunt but I am also motivated to put meat in the freezer. I make the choice about what I harvest.... I happen to think that button bucks are very tasty...and on my property I will make the decision about whether or not I pass..
These clowns should focus their efforts on amending the SAFE Act to correct some of it's issues or on other more needed legislation. Let hunters make the choice about their harvest.
A conservation focused initiative would protect does...not horns.
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Old 03-18-2017, 12:47 PM   #4
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This bill is wrong on so many levels...

It takes the responsibility of deer management away from the DEC and puts it in the hands of politicians who have been bought out by the relentless lobbying of the QDMA (Quality Deer Management Association) and New York Whitetail Deer Management Coalition (NYWDMC) and other groups and a number of wealthy and influential land owners. This is very problematic.

This bill would take away each individual hunters right to decide for themselves what deer to take. This is the biggest overreach of our hunting freedom and the DEC recognizes and respects that with their current regulations and management practices.

The central NY and finger lakes areas would have a 4 point on one side requirement (and the other large area 3 points preside). This is absolutely insane. For the hunter who is just out to enjoy the hunt, has limited time and would like to be able to take a deer this would significantly lower the odds of success.

This bill is being forced on us by lawmakers, many of them do not even hunt or understand what it is like to be a deer hunter. They are caving to the relentless pressure of this trophy deer movement that thinks they can dictate all hunters.

New York already has plenty of nice big bucks to go after and many are taken each year that make the NYS Big Buck Club. The people that want this passed think they can simply grow big deer and then shoot them on a regular basis. This trophy obsession is out of control and they will not stop until they have legal control over all hunters.

Write or call your state senator and voice your strong opposition to this bill before it is too late.
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Old 03-18-2017, 11:36 PM   #5
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I doubt the Governor will sign a budget with this item included. One thing DEC pointed to last year with their reasoning for not expanding ARs was the cost of enforcement. That alone will be a major detriment. I'm not for or against ARs but I don't feel one hunter, or group of hunters, has a right to dictate what another should shoot and I prefer that sporting regulations be left in the hands of the DEC, not politicians.
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Old 03-19-2017, 08:21 AM   #6
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I'm not for or against ARs but I don't feel one hunter, or group of hunters, has a right to dictate what another should shoot and I prefer that sporting regulations be left in the hands of the DEC, not politicians.
X2

I suspect, if this was passed, that the number of doe permits would have to be increased to keep the deer numbers down. The DEC already has difficulty keeping those numbers down in certain areas.
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Old 03-19-2017, 10:01 AM   #7
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Hunter's should have the choice.
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Old 03-20-2017, 12:21 AM   #8
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Good luck trying to count points on most of the deer I see. It's one thing if you are sitting in a tree stand in southern zone but this just wouldn't work where I hunt. A lot of times a flash of bone is all you might get in time to shoot. Not to mention there isn't a better way to give ammunition to anti-hunters than to regulate it towards hanging something on your wall.
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Old 03-20-2017, 09:09 AM   #9
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Vote.....

Exercise your right to bit*h... don't assume the senate or the governor will do the right thing. Politics makes for odd bed fellows else why would these four co-sponsor this nonsense?
George A. Amedore, Jr. (R, C, IP) 46th Senate District
John A. DeFrancisco (R, C, IP) 50th Senate District
Rich Funke (R, C, IP) 55th Senate District
William J. Larkin, Jr. (R, C) 39th Senate District

Follow this link to vote Aye or Nay...go on record with your opinion.
https://www.nysenate.gov/legislation...dment/original

The DEC is equally immersed in the politics of Albany....especially the DEC management that is located there. The opinions and initiatives of the local DEC offices are often not amplified by DEC management... help them with your votes.
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Old 03-20-2017, 01:36 PM   #10
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Some good reading on this topic, including a pilot antler restriction program that was put in place in southern NY:
http://www.dec.ny.gov/outdoor/93857.html
http://www.dec.ny.gov/outdoor/27663.html
http://www.dec.ny.gov/press/105148.html

I'm not sure what to make of this bill.

On the one hand, I'm inherently wary of unnecessary and poorly-justified legislation. There hasn't been much prep or PR work by any of the sponsoring politicians. And considering this topic is one that is liable to get hunters (their voting base) riled up, I would expect them to be more transparent and communicative with people on this issue. Also, I'd like to see more DEC input on this and I'd prefer that if antler restrictions were developed, the DEC do it, not the legislature...it gives more flexibility and credibility to the whole process that way.

On the other hand, I do partly understand the context behind this legislation, even if I don't agree with its overall method. Older bucks not only enhance the hunting experience, but I've got to believe there is some genetic, species-wide benefit to allowing the younger animals grow some while taking out the older ones that have already bred a few times. I know in western NY, the older Bucks are tough to come by...there is just too much hunting pressure to allow them to live that long. In the ADK's, I strongly suspect it is even worse. For rifle hunting, you're basically limited to legally-antlered deer (no DMP's for most WMU's up there). So if you see a deer that is legal, which is a big if some seasons, you are most likely taking the shot, regardless of the antler length.

I passed on a young buck with 2 spikes in the ADK's this past season. I saw him, had a good shot, but didn't take it because I knew he was barely legal. That was the only deer I saw up there for the season. I've no doubt that most other hunters in my position would have taken him out. The voluntary AR sounds great on paper, but when you're in a low-density area and you're anxious to fill your tag, I'm not sure how well it works.

I don't know....at the very least, if there is going to be some sort of enforced AR program, I'd like the DEC to be developing and executing it, not the NYS legislature.

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Old 03-20-2017, 07:58 PM   #11
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I've taken 3 bucks in the last 4 seasons. Two 8 pointers and a spike. All dressed out around 110lbs. Last season I saw three bucks on my trail camera. A six, eight and a spike. The spike my boss passed on because it was 'just a spike', the other two were probably 2 yr old bucks, and I would gauge they would dress 110-120. The spike was probably closer to 140lb buck, and obviously older and larger. He likely was only ever a spike.
Hypothetically, which deer do you take given they were all standing there at the same time?
What ethics do you try to instill? Bragging about antler size or harvesting meat?
Passing such a restriction essentially discourages hunting and adherence to laws. Those who don't adhere to the rules now will continue to do as they see fit. The rest of us law abiding types will likely go years without seeing a 'legal' buck.
FWIW- hunting with parties and doing drives/watches as I have been taught, it would be a bit tough to gauge how many points on a side a deer has going 30+ mph through the brush. What do you do, hope it was legal, skip the shot for fear?
Too many people watching canned hunts on corn farms on 'hunting' shows on TV thinking that's what hunting is and passing a law.
My brother in law shot a 10 pointer last season, dressed 168lbs. 5-6 yr old buck. He saw it step out of the shadows at over 100yds and it dropped its head behind a blow down and continued walking. He knew it had a rack but couldn't tell how many points due to light, distance and conditions. Does he pass on the shot with the new law?
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Old 03-21-2017, 08:04 AM   #12
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My brother lives in Watertown and about ten years ago I hunted a semi-QDMA he had joined in the farm country near the western ADK's for two seasons in a row. It was a three-on-a-side AR. The first year on a rainy morning my brother and I sat for a while then he pushed a small swamp towards me. Sure enough, out comes a decent buck but I could only see two antlers; two BIG antlers! I had my scoped .06 and instead of putting the crosshairs on the deer's chest I had to look at his head for brow tines, but he was gone before I could get a good look. I wasn't bitter as rules are rules but it sure felt weird going against my instincts of seeing antlers and directing my focus to making the shot rather than counting points.

The following year I killed a very nice 8-pointer not far from that spot and I like to think it was the same buck. My brother's buddies eventually lost the lease, much of which was developed. Overall, I enjoyed hunting the QDM property as a break from running around the ADK's with my 30-30. I saw plenty of deer, including bucks and I think when properly done QDMA's, which include more than just ARs, can be a good thing. Still, I just don't feel a hunter has the right to dictate to another hunter what to shoot on their own property or public land.
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Old 03-21-2017, 11:40 AM   #13
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Still, I just don't feel a hunter has the right to dictate to another hunter what to shoot on their own property or public land.
I agree. There is enough bickering and division within the hunting community as it is...no need to add fuel to the fire.

I think a DEC-sponsored incentive program for private land owners could be an alternative and potentially effective option. For public land, like up in the ADK's, maybe DEC-enforced policies for certain WMU's one year, and then other WMU's the next year...don't know. I'm just brainstorming there.

I would like to see older Bucks on public lands, but telling hunters they can't take bucks of a certain antler length and size will be a tough pill for most to swallow...the hunting up there is tough enough as it is.

Regardless, a state-wide law seems like the least appropriate way to handle this issue.
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Old 03-21-2017, 05:17 PM   #14
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You can't eat the antlers. My ego is more inflated when I see people enjoy a meal I provided than I do showing them a trophy on my wall.
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Old 03-22-2017, 06:36 AM   #15
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geo - that's a great statement! When's dinner?
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Old 03-22-2017, 03:02 PM   #16
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I second that geo
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Old 03-22-2017, 11:38 PM   #17
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We have the antler restriction here in Pennsylvania. It has led to bigger bucks that is for sure but, much of the hunting here is farmland stand hunting. It allows you much of the time to watch and be selective of what you shoot at. This would definitely not work in the northern zone. In the southern zone it might. We have not point restriction for Senior and Junior hunters which is a help. It did not make for more deer, but after a few years we started to notice more nice bucks, and monsters were starting to become more frequent. These are just my observations. I am not trying to shove any opinions down anyone's throat. we also have a three day doe only senior and junior season for rifle in I believe late October. It's been great for the grandfathers and grandkids. Pennsylvania messes up its fair share but these are things I believe they have done that seem to be working.

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Old 03-23-2017, 02:37 PM   #18
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Antler restrictions are the wrong way to manage for trophies. The most effective way is to restrict the number of buck permits for certain WMUs - manage most for opportunity and a few for trophies.

Which, of course, would never fly in NY.
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Old 03-23-2017, 04:27 PM   #19
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This is a tempest in a teapot.
If the serious southern tier hunter wants to wait for a trophy buck, he'll do so.
It's all about individual priorities.
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Old 03-25-2017, 09:52 AM   #20
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This is a tempest in a teapot.
If the serious southern tier hunter wants to wait for a trophy buck, he'll do so.
It's all about individual priorities.
Jim
Yes and no....rack hunters will pass until they get the horns the want. The issue is the hunter that wants to put a deer in the freezer that will be forced to pass on 3 and 4 points.....
Young hunters will be especially compromised as will be hunters that cannot devote the amount of time it takes to being that selective.

And selfishly, on my property I have a genetic pool that pushes through two and four horned deer....ugly racks but decent sized deer. I harvest them when they present themselves..... During the antler-less mandate a few years ago I had three of these woeful racks within range during the first week of bow season. I had to let them walk.. I never saw other deer until December...

Let the hunter make the choice and let NYS Senate work on something meaningful that creates jobs, lowers taxes, improves our infrastructure etc.....
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