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Where's all the PA hunters?

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Where's all the PA hunters?

Old 12-04-2021, 05:32 AM
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Default Where's all the PA hunters?

I've seen one other Hunter out. I just drove three miles through state game lands and there wasn't a single truck parked.

What's the deal? Sat until 9 this morning and heard three total shots.

Used to hear over a hundred the first Saturday.

What's the deal.

-Jake
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Old 12-04-2021, 07:13 AM
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there ain't many left IMO LOL

I have about 10000 acres surrounding me , owned by gun clubs, over 250+ members in the clubs combined, I have security camera's at my place, for them to access there lands, they have to drive past my place
opening day, 12 vehicles went in, 12 on Opening day of rifle season, second day 8, first Monday 2, Tuesday thru Thursday ZERO
yesterday 7 and today about 10
yrs back it was nothing to shave 70+ vehicles go in opening day and at least a dozen or more every day after! and that was when things opened on a Monday! not a weekend!
opening day around me used to sound like WWII from, before day light, and well after dark, YUP lots cheaters here sadly! )
opening day I heard like 10 shots the whole day, 1 the second day and zero mon tuesday wed, Thursday I heard one guy behind me, shoot 14 times, in under 2 minutes, so, NOT sure he was hunting,. might have been wasting ammo at tree's?(and don;'t laugh, I have asked the guy a few times, and thats what he tells me he does when he gets bored!)

was up at other property I have, near several larger game lands and took a ride thru some just to kill time and maybe get lucky and see a successful hunter or two
I drove thru about 10+ miles of dirt game land roads, and seen 2 trucks , that's it!
drove over 250 miles yesterday thru Pa, and didn;'t see a single hunter hunting in my travels, can see for hundreds of yards into forests and Mt sides, NO orange to eb seen(and yes I know many don;t wear orange liek they used too)
but all the normal parking spots that hunters used to fill, were all empty!
Talked to many guys at my hunting camp(didn't make it there this yr
about 40 hunters up in mixed cabins about us, opening day, by monday ALL were gone but maybe 4-5 guys
25000 acre game lands near camp, and guys tell; me, its vacant this hunting season after the weekend opening
and everyone they talked to was't happy claiming NO deer, and the game commission needs to step up there game with some better habitat to get deer numbers back?/
but these same folks only hunt 2 days, so? take with a grain of salt!

its sad seeing so few hunters anymore in PA, PA once had a super strong number of die hards , hunt dark to dark,,
now, to many fair weather hunters and well, only hunt prime times for a few hours IF that, and most need to have food plots and prime lands, and ground blinds/shooting houses that are like sitting at home,
them days of folks just being OUT there in the weather and just wanting to enjoy a Hunt have LONG passed IMO!
The Pa might be in trouble in a few decades when lic sales drop even lower as hunter numbers fade away!

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Old 12-04-2021, 01:25 PM
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Originally Posted by mrbb View Post
there ain't many left IMO LOL

I have about 10000 acres surrounding me , owned by gun clubs, over 250+ members in the clubs combined, I have security camera's at my place, for them to access there lands, they have to drive past my place
opening day, 12 vehicles went in, 12 on Opening day of rifle season, second day 8, first Monday 2, Tuesday thru Thursday ZERO
yesterday 7 and today about 10
yrs back it was nothing to shave 70+ vehicles go in opening day and at least a dozen or more every day after! and that was when things opened on a Monday! not a weekend!
opening day around me used to sound like WWII from, before day light, and well after dark, YUP lots cheaters here sadly! )
opening day I heard like 10 shots the whole day, 1 the second day and zero mon tuesday wed, Thursday I heard one guy behind me, shoot 14 times, in under 2 minutes, so, NOT sure he was hunting,. might have been wasting ammo at tree's?(and don;'t laugh, I have asked the guy a few times, and thats what he tells me he does when he gets bored!)

was up at other property I have, near several larger game lands and took a ride thru some just to kill time and maybe get lucky and see a successful hunter or two
I drove thru about 10+ miles of dirt game land roads, and seen 2 trucks , that's it!
drove over 250 miles yesterday thru Pa, and didn;'t see a single hunter hunting in my travels, can see for hundreds of yards into forests and Mt sides, NO orange to eb seen(and yes I know many don;t wear orange liek they used too)
but all the normal parking spots that hunters used to fill, were all empty!
Talked to many guys at my hunting camp(didn't make it there this yr
about 40 hunters up in mixed cabins about us, opening day, by monday ALL were gone but maybe 4-5 guys
25000 acre game lands near camp, and guys tell; me, its vacant this hunting season after the weekend opening
and everyone they talked to was't happy claiming NO deer, and the game commission needs to step up there game with some better habitat to get deer numbers back?/
but these same folks only hunt 2 days, so? take with a grain of salt!

its sad seeing so few hunters anymore in PA, PA once had a super strong number of die hards , hunt dark to dark,,
now, to many fair weather hunters and well, only hunt prime times for a few hours IF that, and most need to have food plots and prime lands, and ground blinds/shooting houses that are like sitting at home,
them days of folks just being OUT there in the weather and just wanting to enjoy a Hunt have LONG passed IMO!
The Pa might be in trouble in a few decades when lic sales drop even lower as hunter numbers fade away!

I was out today trying to push some deer to my nephew along with my BIL form 10:30 am to 1:00pm. In that time I did not hear one shot from surrounding properties when on the first Saturday of the 2nd week in other years there would have been lots of other hunters out on surrounding properties. It is a sad situation.
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Old 12-04-2021, 03:10 PM
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But WHY? Is everyone getting it done in archery season now? Or what.

I seem to remember reading in either PA or Ohio that last year the archery harvest passed the gun harvest.

So I'm sure that factors into it.

There's still lots of deer. There's just no one out moving them around anymore.

We still do drives. One of the last groups in our area that do it. We piss allot of people off too. Nobody likes drives anymore.

But I saw 40 some deer today including 6 bucks. Nothing legal though.

I did finally see one other Hunter up on a hillside about 3pm. Very little shooting all day.

We used to run 15-20 out of our camp every year. This year we had 9 the first day. 7 today. But 3 of those were junior hunters. It's hard to drive stuff without willing guys. We do the best we can.

Of our 9 from the first days day so far 8 have tagged a deer(I'm the only one that hasn't! Lol I've been passing doe looking for a 'good' buck) Including 4 bucks. We do alright.

But hunting in PA is certainly changing.

-Jake
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Old 12-05-2021, 01:46 PM
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Jake the only time I see hunters is driving on the highway. I assume they're hunters because they're in blaze orange! I haven seen another hunter since the beginning of archery season in the woods. Normally I used to like when grouse season opened because they would jump deer as the strolled through they woods chasing Mr. Ruff or squirrels. I got quite a few deer that way while in my stand. But my year has been slow too. I saw one deer tail in early muzzy season and this past Saturday I thought I was going to connect as I watched a deer walking through the thick brush. As it entered an opening for a shot I gave a bleat and it stopped and looked in my direction showing me his little spikes!
I'm just tickled pink that my grandson finally connected on a nice little buck. I put him in one of my favorite spots (but you know all about that!)

Last edited by bronko22000; 12-05-2021 at 01:48 PM.
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Old 12-05-2021, 02:34 PM
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IMO< yes there are a lot more archery hunters now than ever, and BIG part of it is, well warmer weather
many folks just don't like the cold
as I said , I spend a lot of time in deer processing butcher shops, and and friends with a ton of folks in large hunting clubs, add in all the farmers I talk to and friends with
and a HUGE reason IMO for not so many hunters in PA< is, sadly, MANY don't see game anymore on game lands
I hear so many folks complain there are NO deer, NO grouse, no small game, minus squirrels, which everyone seem to say there is a lot of!

like it or not, IMO< in PA< there is a HUGE difference in land quality, some places yes have lots of deer and some places have almost NONE
it comes down to food
and like it or not, many state game lands don;'t offer much in GOOD food to widlife anymore
the damages done from having TOO many deer for too long, has really effected forested lands, causing them to have little to no GOOD browse
add is so few fires anymore, and fire was a HUGE help in keeping forested land always growing new foods for things like deer and other critters!

which is WHY so many hunters in PA< talk so badly about game lands,
they rather hunt there own lands where they can make them into places wildlife strives ,
or they just won't hunt game lands
or will with a lack luster approach, not willing to put the work into things
add in all the negativity you read online about game lands being unsafe(countless folks tell how they WON"T take there kids to them to hunt out of fear of some IDIOT shooting them, even when this is far from true!)

game lands get a bad rap
yes, some do SUCK, but some are also super quality hunting for those willing to find the places!
I know OT might have an issue with em saying thisand I DON"T mean to offend him!

but I know a LOT of game wardens in PA and have for decades!
I know that of the one's that hunt, almost NONE deer hunt on game lands, they ALL hunt private lands, NOT game lands!
which IMO< sort of says something about quality of even its worker think of the game lands?
Sorry OT< just being honest!
and if ANYONE should know the best spots on game lands well, GW's should?



and truly, IMO<
forested land in PA< is in serious need of HELP I

drive about highways and just see how far you can NOW See into the woods as you drive, with little or no growth that a deer can reach and eat, yet alone be quality food for it!
FIRES are needed, but NO one will allow them, anymore, too much fear of law suits
and controlled burns was a MAJOR tool for game commission for decades, before all the layers scared them!, and why IMO< wildlife was way more abundant on game lands!

but timbering on MORE acres of game lands should be happening IMO< as that is also a great tool for the state to use to MAKE lands better for wildlife
I get on some very LARGE game lands all over PA< and I see so little timbering going on and I don't get it
IMO< win for wildlife, win for game com,mission, as they MAKE money off it!
don't get why its not used more!

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Old 12-06-2021, 04:10 AM
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Hunters have been complaining there are no deer on game lands since I started hunting deer. Many don't see deer when they walk by them. I don't know where they look or if they are paying attention to their surroundings. I have stood in the woods on many occasions and watched deer walk by hunters and when I approached and checked them they would complain about no deer. When I told them I watched deer walk by them within very good rifle distance they didn't believe me. I am convinced some people are hunters and some are not. Of course these are many times the same hunters that I walked up to and I had to stop and cough of call out so I didn't startle them sting there with a gun in their hands.

Last edited by Oldtimr; 12-06-2021 at 06:29 AM.
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Old 12-06-2021, 05:02 AM
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Again....

Plenty of deer. Very few hunters and no one out moving them around.

We put the work in and see/tag lots of deer. I'm just amazed at the lack of hunters and lack of shooting that I hear.

I used to count the shots in the morning. Usually get to 100 before 8 am. And this was when it was buck only still.

Very little shooting the last few years.

-Jake


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Old 12-08-2021, 10:27 AM
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Jake, there was little shooting in my area down near Clarksburg. from the first day until now there hasnt been much shooting at all. a lot of schools changed Monday as a school day now. they no longer get Monday off like they used to. as soon as they made Saturday the first day the schools changed their schedules. from those ive talked to there seems to be fewer deer being shot.
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Old 12-08-2021, 10:33 AM
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Due to lack of Hunter cooperation I don't think we'll ever know how many deer actually get shot in PA.


It's good to see you on here Mr. Slim. I was thinking about you the other day wondering how you were doing. Hope all is well.

I'll be out Saturday for one last go at it. Been a long while since I didn't fill at least one PA tag. This might be the year.

-Jake.
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