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I have the pleasure of hunting each year at a friends property in the Rocksprings area. It is low fence and we feed with proten and run corn feeders near the blinds. We each hunted several days this year and both were amazed and the low number of whitetails sighted. We considered the windy days, heavy acorn crop and other factors but I am starting to think there has been some kind of die off we were unaware of. I saw plenty of axis passing through, some turkey but durn near no WT at all. Anyone have similar conditions and what do you suspect the cause to be? Thanks, Gary
 

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Having the same problem in Fredericksburg. Normally I already have enough deer but this year I still haven't shot the first one. My game cam shows the deer moving and feeding at night and I don't understand why. The moon doesn't even make a difference. I also usually have turkeys but haven't seen or heard thenm this year.
 

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Fair chase fisherman!
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Its all of the hill country right now not sure why but it is very tough hunting. The deer are moving they just are not going to feeders.
 

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Give it hell Remy!
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They can lay under an oak tree and eat acorns without moving. We just started to see some deer come to feeders last week.
 

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Rocksprings

We run annual spotlight surveys and our deer counts are about 30% less than last year. We still see plenty of deer, but not the numbers we normally do. I believe we had a die off. We sometimes have a problem with hemmoratic fever (bluetounge) but am not sure if it is that or just too darn dry at the wrong time.
BB
 

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Out Sonora way we are experiencing the same type of hunting.
Hardly any deer coming to feeders.......and the deer are still hitting the oak motts looking for acorns.
They have got to be all gone by now but they continue to look for them....
So our harvest is down 75 % from the same time last year .......
I dont believe we have had a dieoff or we would have seen carcases...
Nah, just too much food this fall......Merry Christmas
 

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Get the Net!
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Same story at our lease in Real County. Hills are holding plenty of acorns and the deer aren't frequenting the feeders as they usually do.

Hopefully they'll hit the corn hard during our return trip after Christmas.
 

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Highball !!!!
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you also have to realize that up til late sept/oct we were in the 3rd year of a drought....and then came a bumper crop of acorns
 

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Master of Boats
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Same at our place, out by Barksdale. We were working on something last weekend, the fallow does and WT does would feed under the oaks to within 20' of us. There are still a ton of acorns on the trees, I expect one more crop of acorns to fall.

One thing about it though, the deer are in great shape for December. All sleek and fat, not like the last couple years, these critters have been getting enough to eat. It should payoff in a healthier herd in the long term. We are still thinning the number of animals though, to get a better ratio, too many does right now.

MM
 

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"Wizards begin as blacksmiths"
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Same thing down south in Maverick County, except we don't have the acorns to contend with. I'm in a blind right now and have seen only 3, and they are not coming in to the corn. Step right over as they cruise through.

It's just wierd.
 

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Reel Boy - Team Reel Blessed
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We are on the Real, Uvalde county line and we are not seeing any whitetail in person or on the cameras. One camera did have 14 aoudad on one picture. The hogs are gone too. I have seen only 2 whitetail deer all season and one was an 8pt the other a 4pt. I am used to hunting where we see 10-20 deer under the feeders at every hunt and this was a major change. I will be looking for a new lease this coming season......... I have seen more deer in one day hunting in East Texas this year than at my hill country lease :(
 

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Deadeye McGee
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mia

I thought it was just my area with the loss of the windmill well that resulted in the dirt tank drying up. I was at my place off of RR674 south of Rocksprings from 12/17 to 12/21. I saw no hogs and very few signs of recent hog presence in the area, I heard turkey on some mornings but only intercepted at a feeder one evening (I sat in the same stand morning and evening every day, 8 sittings!) and saw some doe, very healthy yearling doe and button bucks, a small spike and a longhorned branched spike. I also saw a 4-pointer on the game cam and under my red light feeder one night. I'm not seeing the bucks that I saw a few months ago! I guess it is the changing patterns of the animals with the well drying up and the abundance of natural forage. All I came back with was a turkey hen, a jackrabbit and a red fox. That is a mighty expensive turkey breast!!! The good thing is I'm also not seeing the large number of hunters hunting the small tracts in my area!!! I'm going back on the day after Christmas and staying through the New Years weekend. Maybe a nice big spike will show up then!

P.S.-HAS ANYONE TRIED COOKING A FOX!!!! LMVVVFAO!!!
 

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In areas where they must compete with exotics such as axis or what have you sorry folks but they (whitetail) are going to lose out. I want no exotics on any place I would own or lease if I intended to hunt whitetail.

Charlie
 

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"Wizards begin as blacksmiths"
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... saw some doe, very healthy yearling doe and button bucks, a small spike and a longhorned branched spike.
After spending about 4 days on a ranch in Maverick County, it was noted by more than one hunter that we are not seeing a lot of yearlings. We are usually covered up with them since the does usually throw twins. In fact we saw very few and it seems our deer density could actually be low. We think that a combination of drought and predators could have led to a very big fawn die-off this year.
 

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i've been hunting in san augustine & washington counties & it's the same story in both. i'm going to say it's the acorns & and this wind out of every direction we've been having. i've just now started using my climber & hand throughing corn & setting up 120 to 150 yds away depending on the wind DIRECTIONS & have seen plenty of does & small bucks but just not the one yet.
 

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"Whatever one sows, he will also reap"
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ditto

Gary,

I'm in your boat. Lotsza boring sits in the box blind.We have hunted 5k acres in Val verde co for the past 8 years. Nvr has it been this bad. South of Ozona we have seen very few mature deer, as well, and the ones we have seen are young. 4 of my hunts, I never saw a one. That's including areas that are funnels and more open, not just lookn at the feeder areas.12 hunters and only 2- 4.5 yr olds taken. Some of our free choice pro fdrs are not yet empty fom the last fill. Does are even few and far. Week of thanksgiving didn't produce any bucks, like each year. I hunted dec 2-7 and dec 15 thru 18 and nvr even saw the rut. (matter of fact 6 of us did) We also are wondering if we had a die off. Our rancher lost 8 cows and 2 horses. We found a few deer carcasses. Also, found a few torched cows...Hmmm...I just keep lookn at all the pics i took of lotza 3.5 yr olds last yr and wonder how long is it going to take to recover from whatever the cause was. Some resorted to taking young eights and that is just making it worse. We keep bringn up the anthrax issue. I hope we are wrong.:headknock

Luckily, my neigh's convinced me to hunt in Trinity County on a 1500 acre tract. That's were I shot my 4.5 yr old this year.
 

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Fair chase fisherman!
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I hunt ValVerde also and I dont believe its a die off we had great rain this year and the best acorn crop I have ever seen. Even the hogs are scarce and have only found one carcase back during dove opener. They are going nocturnal and could care less about the feeders right now it is very tough hunting.
 
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