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I can't see the Rockies from here !!
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Just got home from BBSP where I participated in a public land
whitetail/hog hunt inside the park. My Elk hunting buddy and I went down monday morning and got in the standby drawing for the gun deer either sex hunt. We got drawn from the stand-by pool so the hunt was on.
The short version of the two day hunt goes like this
Roger - 53 does, 16 bucks, 0 hogs sighted.
Me - 14 does 4 bucks and 0 hogs sighted.
This is an antler restricted county so the legal bucks were 13" or better
inside spead or a buck with at least 1 unbranched antler.
Roger saw 2 legal bucks but passed on both and I saw 1 that was a 10
and probably 15" inside but looked to be 2.5 years old. He was a beautiful
young buck with lots of potential and I couldn't do it.
The rut down on the lower Brazos River is over according to all the park
staff and the local game warden. After spending 2 days in the field I believe it. The staff at the park were very friendly and were trying to help
everyone fill their tags.There were probably 20 or so does taken and maybe 5 legal bucks were killed. The largest buck I saw killed would probably score in the low 120's. The park has been under antler restrictions for 5 years and Brazoria county has been for 4 years. I've
never hunted this part of the state before but I've got to say I'm not
impressed with the local herd. We saw lots of very small racked older bucks that are not legal to kill but sure need to be removed from the
breeding population:headknock. I had a great time and if I'm off :work: I'll try it again next fall. Gotta Run, Later Baker
 

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Friend of mine has a place right on the Brazos in Ft. Bend County. He has always told me about the rut starting before gun season, so yes I can agree the rut is over down there. However, on the numerous hunts I have been on out there I have seen some great bucks easily scoring in the 140s. I guess it all depends on forage, hunting pressure, etc..... on what kind of bucks you are going to see. I will say that in my opinion, the doe to buck ratio is way out of control.

Just my .02

Jason
 

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Friend of mine has a place right on the Brazos in Ft. Bend County. He has always told me about the rut starting before gun season, so yes I can agree the rut is over down there. However, on the numerous hunts I have been on out there I have seen some great bucks easily scoring in the 140s. I guess it all depends on forage, hunting pressure, etc..... on what kind of bucks you are going to see. I will say that in my opinion, the doe to buck ratio is way out of control.

Just my .02

Jason
Ive hunted deer in this area all my life. Near Angleton until I was 18 and now right off the Brazos in FB county. Basket racks are the norm. Buck/doe ratio IS indeed out of control. I've got a 10 pt on my wall that was killed outside of Angleton with at least 2" dia base, 2 kickers and the start of a branch on both brow tines. Antler height from base is about 18" Inside spread 11" outside is JUST outside his ears. Killed when I was 18 and was one of the biggest ever seen on the property. I have a buddy who has land and leases it on the Brazos outside of Angleton. They manage the place, but no too strictly. Have food plots and protein and they are getting some REALLY nice deer out there the last few yrs. Everyone out there has the same mentality as far as hunting and hasnt taken any of the nice ones in the past few and instead are harvesting the culls. Very impressive game cam pics here lately.

BTW my place is less than 3 miles from BBSP
 

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Theoretical Ecologist
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Texas has four subspecies of whitetails...

  • Texas whitetail
  • Avery Island whitetail
  • Kansas whitetail
  • Carmen Mountains whitetail

They all have their own genetic limitations and potentials for reaching a perceived 'trophy' size, but nutrition, including minerals, and population densities have a major impact on antler size and characteristics.

The deer at Brazos Bend are Avery Island whitetails and Texas whitetails.

What qualifies as a 'trophy' rack should be judged in the context of the area. Trophy status is far different when comparing regions like Brazos Bend vs. the Hill County vs. South Texas, etc.

Your choice to not take the 10 point with the 15" spread based on it appearing to be 2.5 years old is a personal one that I make no judgment on. Had it been in a high fence managed property, then it would have certainly been the right choice to pass on it.

The sole purpose of the Brazos Bend hunt is to reduce population numbers in order to protect the park's plant life from overgrazing.

Each year a determination is made as to how many animals need to be removed from the park in order to keep the herd at a reasonable level. For that purpose it makes no difference if the deer taken are mature does, doe fawns, buck fawns, spikes, young bucks with barely legal spreads or old bucks with impressive antlers for the area.

However, taking the longer term approach, removing does accomplishes the herd reduction that is needed while helping to manage the future trophy potential by bringing the buck/doe ratio more inline with what was natural back when major predators did that for us 24/7/365.

We will never get the ratio there even close to the ultimate of 1:1 as this can only be accomplished through extensive management in a high-fence environment, but it will certainly help.
 

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I can't see the Rockies from here !!
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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
The sole purpose of the Brazos Bend hunt is to reduce population numbers in order to protect the park's plant life from overgrazing.

Each year a determination is made as to how many animals need to be removed from the park in order to keep the herd at a reasonable level. For that purpose it makes no difference if the deer taken are mature does, doe fawns, buck fawns, spikes, young bucks with barely legal spreads or old bucks with impressive antlers for the area.

However, taking the longer term approach, removing does accomplishes the herd reduction that is needed while helping to manage the future trophy potential by bringing the buck/doe ratio more inline with what was natural back when major predators did that for us 24/7/365.

We will never get the ratio there even close to the ultimate of 1:1 as this can only be accomplished through extensive management in a high-fence environment, but it will certainly help.[/QUOTE]

If the Sole purpose of the hunt is to reduce the herd then they or you should conduct the hunt as an anterless and spike hunt (which many parks do) or have a youth doe/spike hunt and you could manage the
herds that way. I believe the park manager doesn't schedule youth
hunts because they are free and extra adult hunts mean more days of
lost revenue from the park being combined with and limited fees from the hunt. If you want all does and and spikes shot then schedule the correct hunt. I'm not intrested in killing does or spikes but the people that did were pleased with their hunts and that's great for them. I knew going in that a buck that was a trophy to me was going to be a longshot but I payed my money to hunt my way by the rules they gave me. I'm in NO way obligated to shoot does and spikes for the state. Again if that's the intent of the hunt the it should in a different catagory in the public hunts booklet. Just my .02 Later Baker
 

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Gone Phishing
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Friend of mine has a place right on the Brazos in Ft. Bend County. He has always told me about the rut starting before gun season, so yes I can agree the rut is over down there. However, on the numerous hunts I have been on out there I have seen some great bucks easily scoring in the 140s. I guess it all depends on forage, hunting pressure, etc..... on what kind of bucks you are going to see. I will say that in my opinion, the doe to buck ratio is way out of control.

Just my .02

Jason
The whole fort bend area is like that.
 

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Theoretical Ecologist
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2,411 Posts
If the Sole purpose of the hunt is to reduce the herd then they or you should conduct the hunt as an anterless and spike hunt (which many parks do) or have a youth doe/spike hunt and you could manage the herds that way. I believe the park manager doesn't schedule youth hunts because they are free and extra adult hunts mean more days of lost revenue from the park being combined with and limited fees from the hunt.

If you want all does and and spikes shot then schedule the correct hunt.
At this point the staff's thinking is that having the three hunting events is working as most of the deer harvested have been does. The hunts are conducted during times when park visitation by the public is low and youth are allowed to hunt, just not as a separate event.

On the other hand, Summerville is hosting anterless deer only hunts with a 5 deer limit.

I'm not intrested in killing does or spikes but the people that did were pleased with their hunts and that's great for them. I knew going in that a buck that was a trophy to me was going to be a longshot but I payed my money to hunt my way by the rules they gave me. I'm in NO way obligated to shoot does and spikes for the state. Again if that's the intent of the hunt the it should in a different catagory in the public hunts booklet. Just my .02 Later Baker
Although there are a few bucks at Brazos Bend that you would be willing to shoot, I wouldn't recommend it to you as a location where you would have any reasonable expectation of getting a shot at one.

Perhaps if enough does are culled, the trophy potential there will improve over time.

On another note, I'm surprised neither of you saw any feral hogs. Were there any shot at all?

Brazos Bend has been running an active hog trapping program, but I saw lots of them on last year's hunt. I manage wildlife on 16,000 acres to the west of the park and I haven't seem much hog activity lately either. During the summer drought that wasn't unusual but we unusually have large herds of them show up when it's wet like now. I'm sure they are hugging the bottoms not having to move what with the huge acorn crop this year.
 

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Texas has four subspecies of whitetails...

  • Texas whitetail
  • Avery Island whitetail
  • Kansas whitetail
  • Carmen Mountains whitetail
They all have their own genetic limitations and potentials for reaching a perceived 'trophy' size, but nutrition, including minerals, and population densities have a major impact on antler size and characteristics.

The deer at Brazos Bend are Avery Island whitetails and Texas whitetails.

I have never heard of this. Pretty 2 cool. Do you know when they brought in Avery Island deer?

An inquiring mind wants to know!!!
 

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I can't see the Rockies from here !!
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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Hello AQ, I agree it's not a place to expect a trophy, but I was
off work for a few days and saw it as a chance to sit in a blind
instead of a recliner. I didn't expect to see a trophy there but
heck at least I got to go hunting. As I wrote earlier, I had a good
time and will do it again next year if I'm off work when they schedule
the hunt.
I was surprised that we didn't see any hogs either but I think several
were taken by other hunters. I was in a blind the second day right on
the Brazos river and it was thick bottom land. I'm sure all the hogs must
have been eaten by the skeeters;) .They were brutal. Take Care
Baker
 

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More There than here..Gone fishin....
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my lease is across the street.. Im jumping off it @ the end of the year & getting my own lease in chesterville..not enough duck n geese to keep me happy
 

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Theoretical Ecologist
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Do you know when they brought in Avery Island deer?

An inquiring mind wants to know!!!
The Karankawa Indians were hunting them in the Brazos Bend area long before the Spanish explorer, Cabeza de Vaca, was shipwrecked on the Texas coast in 1528.

They are as much a Texas subspecies as a Louisiana one, but they were first identified as their own subspecies at Avery Island, Louisiana, which is how they got that name.
 

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Theoretical Ecologist
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Like said, the reason for this hunt is to reduce deer numbers but they restrict less than 13" spread bucks being shot.........thats crazy.
You could also kill a total of four deer outside the park, but they limit you to three on the special hunt. I think it's a matter of what they have been doing is working so far in that the total number of deer taken is matching up well with the number that they want removed.

It also is resulting in mostly does being taken. As I remember, only one legal buck was killed there last year. At least they allow you to take a really nice buck if you have one come by.

I'll be there next month and I know the TPWD biologists and the warden who work the hunt and I'll ask them if they think the park staff's plan is adequate.
 

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Saw two non-typicals back in my high school days back in the Hale lake area that probably would score 170+ running together. Points going EVERYWHERE. It has been a little while since I graduate high school though :tongue:
 
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