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Old 08-05-2003, 05:47 AM
Typical Buck
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Join Date: Feb 2003
Location: Munising MI
Posts: 501
Default RE: qdm=loss of hunting skills?


Personally, I think you have some gross misunderstandings of what QDM is, and what is supported by the QDMA. You are obviously very negative towards QDM, and just trying to " stir the pot" . There are quite a few guys on this site that this will not work with. Many of us have been ardent QDM supporters for years, and understand the basics and beyond, and most likely will never change our minds, especially by any of the points you' ve tried to bring forth. Here is what you are missing:

QDM is, and only is....
1. Adequate buck age structure

2. Maintaining population levels at or below the carrying capacity of the habitat

3. Adequate sex ratios

That' s it, period.

The QDMA takes those 3 biologically proven principles of QDM, and adds a few social management aspects, including, education, youth involvement, habitat improvement, cooperation with local law enforcement and biologist, etc..

By talking about food plots, you are only covering one aspect that falls under " Maintaining population levels at or below the carrying capacity of the habitat" . And this aspect, food plots, habitat improvement, etc.., is still bound by maintaining population levels in balance with the habitat.

The 3 principles listed above are what QDM actually is, and what forms the biological, scientific base of the QDMA and it' s beliefs.

QDM can apply anywhere, because anywhere you go those 3 principles apply for the health of the herd.

Another thing you' ll find, as hunters become more involved in the management aspects, as well as education, they not only become better educated in white-tail biology and habitat, but better hunters. Mark Thomas, a national board member of the QDMA, told me last year that it is very important that hunters become better hunters. It' s all about involvement, as education and activities increase, so does the skill level of the hunter. The guys that are out there on their property maintaining food plots, setting tree stands, studying game movements, improving habitat based on deer usage on the property not only become better hunters, but know where their deer sleep, eat, give birth, hide, escape, and live every aspect of their yearly lives. Eduction=involvement=hunter knowledge=hunter skill.

I personally would not even put baiting-in MY AREA, anywhere in the same class. Virtually all baiters around here throw some bait out a week before the season, and sit for a few times during gun season. That' s it. No education, increase in knowledge, skill level, passion, desire, or anything. In fact, around here, the use of baiting by the majority of hunters, and the extreme reliance on baiting for the only commonly practiced hunting method, has seriously donwgraded the skill level of hunters enough that many hunters are getting discouraged and giving up hunting all together. But again, just like food plots isn' t QDM, neither is baiting, so to referance food ploting to baiting to QDM to lack of hunter skill, shows a gross misunderstanding of QDM, food plots, and baiting all together.

So to answer the question, not only is the assumption or thought that QDM equals lower skill levels in hunting incorrect and misquided, but QDM' s relation to food plots and baiting is greatly misunderstood.

I' ve been able to participate in PA' s gun season for the past 10 years. What a difference QDM has made in the big woods! From seeing 30 does and a spike a day in the mid 90' s, to seeing 5 or 6 bucks and 10-15 does a day now, all in the big woods of the Alleghany National forest. Our camp has been in existance for 30 years, with 170 bucks taken. All of the following have increased, over the past 5 year, due to increased doe permits: body weights by age class, rack size by age class, increased buck sightings, hunter success %, size of bucks harvested for total weight and antler size, and buck age harvested. Last year, with the restrictions, buck age class will improve even more. I personally shot the 6th buck I saw on opening day, at 10:00 in the morning. We shot 7 bucks for the 10 guys that stayed at least 2 days, with our 2nd largest buck ever taken, and 2 others in the top 10 out of 170.

So in a nutshell, in the big woods of PA, QDM has done the following:

Improved buck age structure

Lowered deer numbers to targeted carrying capacities

Improved sex ratios

Improved rack size, body weights, rutting activity, hunter success, buck sightings, and best of all....hunter enjoyment. All in the big woods!

Jeff...U.P. of Michigan
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