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Deer Crew Diaries - Entry 88

Posted: October 18, 2017

Easing into fall

[Comments in brackets are by Jeannine and Duane]

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From the Northern Crew:

Dear Deer Enthusiasts, 

This week was my first week on the new Northern Crew Leader. I’m all moved in to the apartment that has been the home of the past two crew leaders and love it. I figured out where all the fawns were and where the best spots were to do telemetry. Fitting into the new position has been smooth as I worked in the Northern study area while on the 2016 Fawn Crew. But there is still much to learn in my new role. 

On Tuesday, I received an email about a collared buck that was harvested.  I was excited about my first mortality investigation especially since the buck was collared while I was on the fawn crew over a year ago.  I very well could have put the collar on this deer! I got the collar, ear tags, and the jaw age deer training and wrote up the mortality report. 

Locations and mortality checks on fawns rounded out the week. A "Separation Mortality Event" email had been sent a GPS collar of a VIT doe.   The fawn collars are paired with the doe’s GPS collar and the two had separated long enough to determine the fawn collar was not moving anymore. The fawn collar was not in mortality mode the day before, but through the magic of technology we were informed a "mortality" had taken place. 

I hurried out into the field to investigate. The VHF signal indeed was now in mortality mode. Within 40m of the road, there lay the collar underneath a low lying tree branch.  There were deer tracks all around and just a little deer hair. The low lying branch had snagged and popped one of the pleats and pulled it right off. This made for an easy mortality report and a quick hike in and out. 

With the first week now come and gone, I am starting to get to know all the fawns quite well and am greatly enjoying my new role for the PGC. I look forward to many more new experiences this fall and await all the pre-deer trapping preparations! 

-Nate
Field Crew Leader
PGC Deer and Elk Section

 

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From the Southern Crew:

Hello all,

Overall, an uneventful week in the South with not a whole lot to report!

Cool temps made for a very nice week of radio telemetry. Despite the fall weather, I only saw two collared fawns. I did see a bear in my travels. He was waddling down a grassy trail near Rothrock State Forest. I nearly drove past him!  I noticed a large black spot in the woods, so I had to back up to see what it was.

black bear butt

We had some heavy rain on Thursday, so I sat in the Colyer Lake parking lot and did some office work (LOAS, supply lists for trapping) until it cleared up and continued with locations. 

I drove the elk truck on Friday to see if the issues were fixed. I do believe it may need brakes, but I still haven’t determined if the 4WD is fixed. 

I check Movebank from time to time to keep tabs on doe 17168 and other deer. This particular doe traveled 6.5 km to fawn this spring. I checked this week and noticed she traveled even further north (7-8 km) then back to her fawning area twice. We got an expelled VIT notification from her again a few weeks ago which was odd. 

It could’ve been nothing or it could’ve been that her collar came in contact with the expelled VIT again because she traveled close to where the VIT stored.  She’s also crossing some major highways which I am not happy about!  She’s a favorite.  The crew even texts me from time to time to get updates on her! 

-April
Field Crew Leader
PGC Deer and Elk Section

 

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