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Still Hunting in Massachusetts

Discussion in 'Hunting, Trapping, & Fishing Forum' started by L. Daniels, Feb 5, 2019.

  1. AHM

    AHM NES Member

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    [​IMG]
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    But with an ambiguous label like that, some caution is necessary.
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  2. Mark from MA

    Mark from MA NES Member

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    Not really necessary for shotgun...... but if you had to move and draw a bow, the deer see you and GTF out.

    I've shot 4 deer from the ground with a bow, all bucks, all looking at me like they could kick my ass, because they were rut filled, they just stand there and take the arrow. Some spooky doe? Forget it. Treestand or ground blind makes it way easier to draw, and shoot at an unalamed animal. Unalarmed is the key. Deer that have your number in a tree or on the ground, are string jumpers, and things go bad shooting at the head bobbing big doe. The arrow is usually a miss, or ends up in a non intended spot.

    Shotgun....different story. Ive shot 30 deer with a gun sitting or still hunting ranging from 4 to 200 yards. Some knew something was up, but I didn't have to make any real movement, so that made the difference.
     
    Last edited: Feb 11, 2019 at 8:38 AM
  3. Mark from MA

    Mark from MA NES Member

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    They have some nice sanctuary in towns like this...... Some of these bucks hang around in behind houses and in industrial parks and never get hunted. Most of the time they are noctournal, but if there are deer around, you can bet theres a smasher or two in the mix. Even in Suburbia.

    I see it in Southern CT all the time. My last deer taken there was a 220 pound dressed, 9 point...in the 135 class. Shot it at 7 yards. People think because it's overpopulated with deer they are all small...that's not the case. Yes youll see a bunch of dinky does in the mix. But the deer we have up here are big breed northern deer, not the smaller southern deer. Put a cam out and you'll be surprised what's walking around at night....some big northern maine style brutes out there.
     
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  4. rocket500

    rocket500 NES Member

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    Bow hunting for sure very helpful to be in a stand. You have to be much closer to the deer in addition to all of the below.


     
  5. tuna

    tuna NES Member

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    I cannot stand to be in a tree stand so I only still hunt. It’s more fun, but I’m terrible at it and didn’t even bother last year.
    Most people that I know that are successful use stands, but some still hunt. Hope you have better luck than I.
     
  6. BigTimber

    BigTimber

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    My trail cam seconds this.
     
  7. 45collector

    45collector NES Member

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    I don't like climbing trees, so for me deer hunting is either with a small group of buddies on short, small area drives (we mainly only hunt on the Cape), or still hunting if I'm alone.
    Your best bet is to learn how to be absolutely still, silent, and when possible facing the wind. And don't stand around with your gun slung over your shoulder once you've found a nice spot to sit/stand. Keep aware of your surroundings with all of your senses and keep the gun in-hand, low ready or whatever. Assuming you have good trigger discipline, keep the safety off. Your gun needs to be ready to raise and fire in a second, without making any unnecessary noise. More than a few deer have escaped from the hunter not being ready when the opportunity presents itself, than anyone will ever know. And that's because most hunters won't admit to anyone that they goofed and let a nice one walk away, when there was no one around to witness it. ;)
    Have fun and be safe, and remember: Don't be the "I threw my gun at a tree" guy.
     
  8. larueminati

    larueminati

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    The late 80's early 90's was before my time but was the Berkshire's herd better back then?
     
  9. HorizontalHunter

    HorizontalHunter NES Member

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    Much.
    Back then it was the hunting Mecca of Massachusetts. Many hunters from the East travelled to the Berkshires to hunt the gun season. It was nearly impossible to get a motel room during the SG season.

    Bob
     
  10. whacko

    whacko NES Member

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    After missing a chance at a buck because I had my gun slung over my shoulder I removed the sling. I never hunt with a sling anymore. Too tempting to get lazy and actually use it when I'm in the woods. Low ready....all the time.
     
  11. Mark from MA

    Mark from MA NES Member

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    We used to hunt New Marlboro, we'd shine farm fields at night and see 50 deer back then. When we shined the same fields in the mid 2000's when I stopped hunting there, we'd see a few or none. During that time, the doe permits went up, they switched from one buck to two, added days to archery, muzzleloader and shotgun. The quality of the woods went down, few new cuttings, few active farms anymore, coyotes came in as well. You would never see a coyote in the 80's.......or very rare. Hunting pressure decreased because it was either better to hunt near home, or the old timers aged out, and a lot of towns closed in the 90's. All of it adds up to poor hunting now...though I'm sure there are some nice deer there, but the deer per square mile is really low probably.

    My dad and I talk about going back some day and just hunting there for old times sake. We took a lot of deer, some of our best deer, and got a lot of memories.

    Same thing in my area of North Central, MA.....90's to early 2000's were good.....I remember the center of Barre being a big check station and having a high deer kill. Now.....its gone and the area checks on a meager amount of deer. The quabbin was a great feeder property and sanctuary, and the state beat the shxt out of it. Sure...its forest is healthy, but the local deer herd sucks.
     
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