Shooting does with fawns and or shooting fawns?

Discussion in 'Deer Hunting' started by Vorsteg, Aug 11, 2017.

  1. Vorsteg

    Vorsteg Member

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    I am weeding through my trail cam videos. Nothing but view of does with fawns. So I began reading other forums on the topic. Want to know your opinions.. Do you harvest a doe if she has fawns? Have you harvested fawns?
     
  2. huck72412

    huck72412 Well-Known Member

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    I've done both. But these days I tend to give the does a pass because early season they are teaching the babies critical lessons in survival. And then of course during the rut I'm anticipating her assistance in helping me shoot my buck. Then late season I always convince myself that she's pregnant with a potential world record.
     
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  3. Holt

    Holt Member

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    I use to when starting out. Now they all get a pass. but if a lone doe comes thru, I will shoot no matter the time of the season. Also I get a lot of groups of 3 generations of does in same group (Doe, fawn and last years fawn). I will shoot the last years fawn in that instance. Great eating deer!
     
  4. jryser

    jryser Member

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    I have shot both - I actually shot a doe and her fawn once. I got flack for that one. Any time I can take a mature triplet maker I will shoot her. Keeps the dominant does from being territorial and concentrating DNA where it needs a bigger spread. And indeed those fawns are tasty, plus the spots give you a place to aim! Ok just kidding on the spots; I will pass those.


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  5. ADP2413

    ADP2413 Member

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    I used to and its always tempting but I just came to realize , I would not get a chance at a buck if I shot a doe. Also hunting deep in swamps or a mile to two miles out in hill country after shooting a doe I would not go back out hunting because its a lot of work to get a deer out of those areas. If I were starving it would be a different case but does and fawns get a pass...


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  6. MCDM

    MCDM Well-Known Member

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    I never shoot does with fawns in tow. I mean if she has got her kids with her she is a good parent however if not and she left them home alone then I say "bad mama" and its on.

    I try to shoot my does early on mostly on private land because its the landowners request. If I notice from my cameras the population is decreasing I reason with them on the sustainability of the population. If i know a monster buck is around I usually pass on does in hope she brings a stud by.
     
  7. ImThere

    ImThere Well-Known Member

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    I usually shoot as many lone doe as possible during bow season. Get done with all the guys who want a deer.


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  8. Ontariofarmer

    Ontariofarmer Active Member

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    It is funny but I have only had the opportunity once to kill a doe or fawn in four years. It sounds weird but in my four years of hunting I have only killed 4 bucks. I have passed on one fawn. Now the first buck was a little spike buck - which I would shot again since it was my first deer ever.
    I would kill a doe in November rather than eat tag soup or if my freezer was empty. One of those four years I did not get a deer and I like venison. I would shoot a doe so I was not hungry that winter.
    If I had confidence that I would get a buck I would pass on a doe. I don't have that confidence yet if it is November with no venison in the freezer. But probably by November does and fawns are separated. because of the rut.

    I hope I get a buck early and can pass on the fawns and does.

    Our hunting contest rewards us if we get a doe and a buck??? So if you want to add points you have to get both.
     
    #8 Ontariofarmer, Aug 12, 2017
    Last edited: Aug 12, 2017
  9. Dewey

    Dewey New Member

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    I would not kill a doe with fawns. Really enjoy watching them interact and learn from momma. When I did shoot one it was only the lone does without fawns or much later in the season when the fawns have a much better chance being on their own. I haven't killed a doe since 2007 only because Earn A Buck required it. These days I am only interested in hunting bucks.


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    #9 Dewey, Aug 12, 2017
    Last edited: Aug 12, 2017
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  10. Redfeather

    Redfeather Active Member

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    Not anymore. When I was younger and greedy for numbers of shot deer.
    I used to shoot the doe first ...and several minutes later the fawns would come back to find her and then I harvested them too.

    So I'm leaving the woods one day and meet up with an elderly hunter, we talk for awhile , and he tells me he's never shot a deer .!?!?!?
    After hearing his lack of success with my greed I felt .....well... really greedy and have taken a lighter path on just killing to make numbers. In fact ALOT of animals get a free pass these days. I'm not saying all as I still love the chase.
     
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  11. redsquirrel

    redsquirrel Administrator
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    It depends on when and where I'm hunting. During September it's earn a buck so I will shoot the first antlerless deer I can, my goal is to shoot a doe as quick as possible so I can start buck hunting. I also hunt management programs where I need to shoot does to keep my rights to hunt there so I will also shoot whatever antlerless deer that I can. I'd prefer not to shoot first year deer because I don't want to shoot a button buck.
     
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  12. Gettin Closer

    Gettin Closer Active Member

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    We do not have an over abundance of deer in our area. The neighbors keep them thinned out. But when/if I get invited on a cull hunt and they are trying to reduce the # of deer and they have the tags ready to fill. It is game on for anything! For instant results in decreasing deer population, take the mature doe. For decreasing future deer population take the fawns. They are not going to reproduce for a nother year or 2 and probably only have 1 their first hear vs 2 or 3 from a mature doe. They eat better than bucks and if someone is going to fill a tag, it might as well be me if I get the chance!
     
  13. d_rek

    d_rek Active Member

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    I'm not big on taking does who are with fawns... but if the season is on the line and I haven't put anything in the freezer just about anything is fair game. BUT... we have tons of does where I live and the fawn survival rate is something like 80 or 90% if you take out the momma. There's a high probability those fawns will be absorbed into a different family group.
     
  14. Vorsteg

    Vorsteg Member

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    Is it better to take out an injured deer? What if that injured deer is a fawn? My wife will have a cow if I shoot a fawn.
     
  15. jryser

    jryser Member

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    Injured deer will ALWAYS be on my hit list simply Bc - if it's an injury that looks fatal, no treason for suffering. Don't forget however, bucks beat each other to severe injuries and recovered quite well. So it's usually a judgment call on my part. I had a deer that had been injured badly and coyotes were nipping off of it slowly, and by the time I found it he was quite crippled. I took him out at 10 yards and ended his misery. That was my buck tag for the year. I was happy to oblige.


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  16. bhuntin

    bhuntin New Member

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    Shoot what makes you happy.

    By the time hunting season rolls around fawns are big enough to make it on there own.

    I would say that perhaps shooting the fawn is the better option instead of the adult doe and here is why.
    1. If there is a hard winter what is the most likely deer in the heard not to make it? Generally speaking it's the fawn.
    2. If you shoot the fawn and let the adult doe walk, she is likely to have another fawn crop next year. Fawns are less likely to become mothers in the spring.
    3. Young animals are more tender and do taste better than older animals.

    The book Heartsblood by David Peterson has a good character on this very topic.

    Hunt for yourself and your own reasons not someone else's. There is nothing wrong with shooting or not shooting an adult doe with fawns or shooting the fawns.
     
  17. d_rek

    d_rek Active Member

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    I read something similar a few years ago. The gist of it being the fawns are the least important to overall herd structure and health.


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