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Deer Crew Diaries - Entry 103

Posted: February 15, 2018

In the thick of trapping season…with the standard weather and truck issues.

[Comments in brackets are by Jeannine and Duane]

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From the Northern Crew:

Dear Deer People, 

We are setting records here in the North. On Monday, we caught nine deer in one day. It was one crazy day. We six deer that morning in Clover traps.  While we were getting dressed to sit a rocket net, we got a report from one of the foresters that there was a deer in one of our traps. I made sure it wasn't one from this morning since he was describing a trap that indeed had a deer in it less than 2 hours before. He assured me that only 5 minutes ago he saw a deer in the same trap. Sure enough, new deer had walked into the trap less than two hours from when we were there previously. At rocket net, we caught two mature bucks. It was truly an amazing day! 

In total, we captured 20 deer this week.  Recaptures were adding up so I started to plan for a move. We have been baiting some new promising trap lines plan to move the majority of our Clover traps on these new trap lines. 

We plan to set some of the traps that we have already moved to new trap. This will hopefully keep the deer numbers rolling in. We will also be working to get most of our other traps moved to their new lines by mid-week to be fully set and catching deer by the end of the week. 

-Nate
Field Crew Leader
PGC Deer and Elk Section

 

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From the Southern Crew:

Hello all,

We had plans to set all of Rothrock and only part of the Bald Eagle Clover traps due to timing and inaccessibility, but we were only able to get Rothrock traps set. Due to the icy roads in Bald Eagle, most of Nick and Randi’s day was spent working with the tire chains. They did get some bait out, but the day went slower than planned. Nick and tire chains2

Monday morning yielded a broken-down truck. The truck started up fine but only made it as far as the Penn Nursery gate before shutting off. We were very grateful that’s where it decided to quit. Not having traps set in Bald Eagle turned out to be a blessing in disguise. We did capture two deer on Tuesday—one recaptured yearling buck and one new adult buck, so that was a plus! 

We planned to rocket net in Bald Eagle on Tuesday night, but unfortunately one of our trucks became stuck.  We spent our evening getting the truck out of a ditch which didn’t leave time to prep our rocket net site. We did successfully use the come-along, though. A learning experience for all and it even worked.

Dead crew truck

The crew took Wednesday off due to the predicted snow and ice. I took advantage of that time to get a spare key made for my truck and catch up on some office work. We were able to sit a rocket net on Thursday night but no luck.  It was great to get out and at least try. 

Eight of our Clover traps and one of our rocket nets are currently stranded on a messy ridge in Bald Eagle. Next week is supposed to warm up so we should be able to safely reach them. We are planning to give those clover traps at least another week to produce for us since we couldn’t reach them this week. Fingers crossed! 

We are hoping to bait our next round of sites at least once, possibly twice more before deciding to move some of our traps to new trap lines. We plan to set most Clover traps this Monday and hopefully begin moving traps. We have quite a bit to catch up on though due to some unpredicted complications. I have high hopes for this week. 

-April
Field Crew Leader
PGC Deer and Elk Section

 

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