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Started scouting on base

Six-GunSix-Gun Senior MemberPosts: 8,155 Senior Member
This is the first duty station that I've ever been assigned to where you can actually hunt on base. There are a very good number of deer all over this region, but hunting on base would be a real convenience since I could get out right after work. It's an option I want to take seriously for at least this coming archery season. If it sucks, then I'll try elsewhere.

Given that I leave for my Nevada antelope hunt in a just a few weeks, scouting time is getting short. So, I decided to get cracking, find some deer sign and set my trail cameras out. The very next day, I already had activity from some does and fawns. I went back out today to test out my new climbing sticks on a tree and checked again while I was out there. Sure enough, another deer turned up early this morning.

The base looks like it could be a really good place to fill the freezer without having to drive hours way to do it. I just have to hope that hunter pressure doesn't spoil the pattern and I have no idea where folks usually choose to crowd in around here during hunting season. You would think that a base wouldn't be as bad as your typical public area, but the base game warden said that there are more folks hunting than you would think. At any rate, at least I know the deer are there.

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Accuracy: because white space between bullet holes drives me insane.

Replies

  • woodsrunnerwoodsrunner Senior Member Posts: 2,725 Senior Member
    Your photos tell me this:

    The deer population is very healthy. Plenty of body mass, and plenty of excellent browse available. Anytime you see a doe with 2 fawns, especially if a high percentage of the annual fawn crop is twins or even occasionally triplets, that tells you that the population is within the carrying capacity of the land and plenty of food material is available. The light color variation is also noticeable. Whitetails will range from a light brown, even lighter than we see here, to almost a dark pencil lead grey, and of course, even whitish/pieded in pockets.
  • Six-GunSix-Gun Senior Member Posts: 8,155 Senior Member
    cpj wrote: »
    How many acres? Can only personnel hunt, or is it open to the public? Ft Lennard Wood has a butt ton of land around it and allows hunting for the public on some of the land on base.(Or at least did)

    The land on base, proper (that is, within the guarded fence) is military, mil families and retirees only. Technically, the base-owned land outside the fence is also, but I'd bet a crisp C-note that there are tons of locals who trespass it despite military game warden patrols. As for the acreage, I don't know, but it is a damned good amount. So much of the base is lush forest and classic deer habitat. The images on the cams came quickly and I have had even more pictures since the original post. Moreover, another military buddy of mine came into town for a meeting and wanted to go explore the base hunting areas. We ran into yet another doe in the middle of one if the creeks.

    I am out of town on business now, but decided to take some old apples that were starting to turn and toss them in front of the cans before I left. Given that the deer in these shots above were random visitors, I fully expect to see some serious action with a little food keeping them in front of the cam for a day or two. Though it is legal, I don't intend to hunt over bait, but do enjoy the pics.
    Accuracy: because white space between bullet holes drives me insane.
  • Six-GunSix-Gun Senior Member Posts: 8,155 Senior Member
    Your photos tell me this:

    The deer population is very healthy. Plenty of body mass, and plenty of excellent browse available. Anytime you see a doe with 2 fawns, especially if a high percentage of the annual fawn crop is twins or even occasionally triplets, that tells you that the population is within the carrying capacity of the land and plenty of food material is available. The light color variation is also noticeable. Whitetails will range from a light brown, even lighter than we see here, to almost a dark pencil lead grey, and of course, even whitish/pieded in pockets.

    That's great info, woodsrunner. I guess it makes sense that multiple fawns is a good sign for the herd health. In that regard, I have realized that this area is just full of deer like I haven't seen since I lived in Nebraska. Apparently, the nasty winter they had up here, and any subsequent die-off, did nothing more than maintain a healthy balance. Seeing them in that reddish summer coat right now is a real treat.

    Oh, and rumor has it that this area has a notable number of piebalds roaming around.
    Accuracy: because white space between bullet holes drives me insane.
  • snake284snake284 Senior Member Posts: 22,429 Senior Member
    What base are you on now Luis?
    Daddy, what's an enabler?
    Son that's somebody with nothing to do with his time but keep me in trouble with mom.
  • Six-GunSix-Gun Senior Member Posts: 8,155 Senior Member
    This is at Wright-Patterson AFB in Ohio, snake. As cpj pointed out, some of the bases allow for the general public to hunt certain stretches while other only allow for military/dependents/retirees to hunt, and others still do not allow hunting at all. This is the first duty station I've ever been assigned to that allows any sort of hunting on it.
    Accuracy: because white space between bullet holes drives me insane.
  • Six-GunSix-Gun Senior Member Posts: 8,155 Senior Member
    cpj wrote: »
    What's the weapon restriction? At Ft Wood (iirc, it's been awhile) there were NO handguns allowed, and I think certain areas were shotgun only for small game, and archery only for deer.

    There is a licensed shooting preserve area that allows shotguns, for sure, but I have to check on the handguns. I'm fairly certain that muzzleloaders are allowed, too, during the appropriate seasons. Bows can be usued virtually anywhere other than specifically restriced areas like the ammo facilities and near the Boy Scout camp. It is mind blowing to see just how access there is on base compared to even the closest public wildlife areas. I'm just bracing myself for a surprise hit of pressure come bow season...
    Accuracy: because white space between bullet holes drives me insane.
  • orchidmanorchidman Senior Member Posts: 8,364 Senior Member
    Cool pics Luis. Love the colour of the deer.

    Pardon my ignorance but what are the requirements for hunting on the base with regards to tags etc. Is it the same for public land or don't tags apply........:uhm:
    Still enjoying the trip of a lifetime and making the best of what I have.....
  • Six-GunSix-Gun Senior Member Posts: 8,155 Senior Member
    orchidman wrote: »
    Cool pics Luis. Love the colour of the deer.

    Pardon my ignorance but what are the requirements for hunting on the base with regards to tags etc. Is it the same for public land or don't tags apply........:uhm:

    Alec -

    The way the base system is set up is that you buy your standard Ohio hunting license and deer tag(s). The tag limits are set by county, with my county allowing for the purchase of up to 3 total tags per season: 2 either sex, one antlerless, with only one buck allowed per year. You then need to buy a base hunting license, which is its own thing, but is only costs around $15 annually and includes the ability to hunt some stocked pheasant fields on base. That alone pays for the cost of the license when you figure that some upland preserves in the states are charging $15 per bird! The ability to bow/gun hunt is merely an added plus.
    Accuracy: because white space between bullet holes drives me insane.
  • orchidmanorchidman Senior Member Posts: 8,364 Senior Member
    Thanks for that Luis. Coming from a place where there is no limit and deer hunting is a year round activity I still have difficulty sometimes in understanding how your system works. One of my staff went to Alaska a couple of years ago ( I think I pay them too much! ) and bought home a couple of 'books' which were the Alaskan Hunting and Fishing regs. After a quick perusal, it became readily apparent that the term 'It aint Rocket science' didn't apply lol......
    Still enjoying the trip of a lifetime and making the best of what I have.....
  • Six-GunSix-Gun Senior Member Posts: 8,155 Senior Member
    Yeah, Alaska is an extreme example of regs gone wild from what I hear. It's bad enough that I'm too afraid to go salmon fishing without a guide the first time. Even Colorado can be pretty daunting. As a rule, the Western US states are usually much tougher to figure out than their eastern counterparts.
    Accuracy: because white space between bullet holes drives me insane.
  • TeachTeach Senior Member Posts: 18,428 Senior Member
    My cousin who is an Anchorage Alaska "native" (moved there with his family as a young boy in 1959) has virtually no restrictions on his salmon fishing, the same as the Indians and Eskimos. The onerous regulations mostly apply to hunting and sport fishing by tourists, not subsistence hunting and fishing by year-round residents. He can wade into one of those streams running bank-to-bank with salmon and net a pickup truck load, which he dries and smokes for winter food. The hunting regs for residents are pretty liberal, also.
    Jerry
  • Six-GunSix-Gun Senior Member Posts: 8,155 Senior Member
    Ah, that is true. If you are a resident, you get a serious hook-up for hunting and fishing. Just glancing at their regs, I believe that residents only even need to apply for a handful of big game tags (i.e musk ox). The rest are included in their annual hunt license.
    Accuracy: because white space between bullet holes drives me insane.
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