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  • Anyone else having this experience

    Been hunting the Orange and Chatham county area for more than 20yrs, year after year the deer have been plentiful. If you put 10 bags of corn out the deer would have it eat in less than a week. You would have to put corn out twice a week if you wanted some on the ground Saturday morning, that's how many deer would be on your spot. 15 to 25 deer every time you sat in the tree. I know we have a bumper crop of acorns this year but I don't believe the acorns is behind what is going on with what is happening. Two bags of corn won't be eaten in two weeks now. I used to average over 1200 trail cam pics a week, now about 225-250 a week. This is a 200 acre farm and there is no sign that the deer have changed patterns, just appears that the deer have vanished for the most part. No timber has been cut or any type of habitat been changed. There are 5-6 other guys that hunt within 1-5 miles of me that are experiencing the same thing this year.
    I am wondering if there's anyone else experiencing this problem and if so what their thoughts are on it. I've heard there has been disease confirmed in about 6/7 piedmont counties but didn't see Orange or Chatham county on the list.
    Anybody else noticed this where they're hunting ?
    same here
    yessir...the same here too..I hunt in Warren county, unfortunately for me there has been a lot of clear cutting going on so I knew I was going to face some challenges. I had a couple of nice bucks I was watching from early july to mid sept just coming outta velvet then the deer rapture happened and I have not seen them since. I too used to get tons of pics, now I get fewer and fewer. the past week or so I've noticed more and more sign of them movin, plus more road kill. keep hoping things get back to normal soon, rut activity ought be cranking up as well....I'll head out Monday am and see how things are going and check the cameras and see what's up.

    happy hunting
    Same Wayne County
    I hunt in Wayne County. Just before season started they were eating corn like crazy. They have not been eating very much lately. I have noticed that for the past week they seem to be hitting the corn a little more. I was also wondering about the acorns. They are everywhere.
    movement is picking up
    Deer movement was slow in bow season but it's picking up now. I've seen bucks the past 2 far as corn vs acorns. The bumper crop of acorns has the deer spread out all over . And deer won't touch corn as long as there are acorns on the ground, at least not where I'm at. I've mixed corn in with acorns and they will pick through the corn for them.
    Just don't know
    I know the acorns are abundant this year but there been bumper crops in the past years too. I've hunted around this farm since 1992 and the deer numbers seem to be about a fourth of what they have been in the past 15 years. The mid to late 90's the population was similar to what I'm seeing now but it is crazy to see a population fall off like this in a year. I talked to a buddy yesterday, that hunts about 5 miles north of me, and it's as bad or worse on his farm. He averaged 1500 or more pictures a week for years on trail cams. The past 2 weeks he's gotten 43 pictures total, with all of those being just 4 different deer. My cousin is 2-3 miles away from me with the same experiences going on with his spots. Everyone that I know hunting in this area is experiencing this problem within a 5-6 square mile area about 3 miles west of Carboro, north and south of 54 highway.
    It's almost like they have been ran out of here by something because we haven't found any carcasses.
    Its the Acorns..
    We had the deer cleaning the corn out until acorns covered the ground. Deer vanished. Now they are coming back to the corn. Acorns are starting to rot and they are slowly moving back to the corn. Movement has also picked up. Bucks are chasing a lot and we have seen a few nicebucks the last two weeks which had vanished since mid September. Deer haven't had to move much to get their bellies full on acorns.
    Has it gotten any better?
    As the crow flies I hunt about 8 miles due north of where you describe and similar situation. For the last several years close to 1000 pics a week on the cams was the norm, this season has been a fraction of that, the only exception being up in the far NE corner of the county, seems to actually be a few more deer over that way compared to last season. What I do know is there are a ton of acorns and I am having 3X as many coyotes on cam than I have ever experienced before...they are even regularly showing up during mid day!
    The other thing odd is usually by now we have lots of different bucks cruising through, not so thus far.
    Have you talked to any of the local farmers...I was told last summer a couple in your area hammered the deer due to crop protection, that could have something to do with, hadn't heard anything about this summer.
    Good luck.
    hang in there
    man i knew how you feel. I have not seen anything maybe 15 deer from the first of deer season till now. But let me tell you this they are there. Just read my article i just posted in bag a buck today.I was so excited and shocked to see a buck of that size. No rubs no scrapes no nothing.
    deer stuff
    That reminds me, my processor said the same thing, farmers in the area were given depradation permits which probably had a bigger impact on the deer population than ehd. none the less, I'm not getting much deer action on cameras yet let alone seeing any bucks. I moved cameras around last week on trails and funnels to see if I can get a different perspective..I'll find out Tuesday.
    dittos on the coyotes as well. shot at 2 an hour so after sunrise myself. anyway, hoping this cold blast gets'em hungry. gonna make some mid day hunts this week in a heavy cover creek bottom, I hope to catch'em cruzin.
    I hunted Saturday evening and I heard one shot way off in the distance, but nothing at the closing bell. So I know it's not just me..
    anyway good hunting
    Business will pick up.
    To me it gets frustrating from the 2nd week of Oct. till now... There are any # of reasons you may or may not see deer during the pre-rut and an abundance or lack of a certain food source is only one of them.

    I really think the full moon phase this past week had the herd concentrating their movement at night.. Something to keep in mind is the peak in the Piedmont should be hitting over the next week or two, this Saturday has a dynamite moon phase for the a.m. and next Sat. (22nd) is a new moon w/ solunar predictions off the charts! Sit all day and keeep the posts/pics rollin in!
    he's back
    Well I'll be @#$%$# he's baaack..This 9pt went missing in Sept just before bow season. I thot ehd got' if just come around during
    Nothing too impressive.
    Hunted Friday evening and seen 6 different bucks and 2 does. Let my dad sit in this stand Saturday morning and evening, he saw 6 bucks and 7 does total. I hunted the other end of the farm and saw 3 cowhorns and 2 does all day. Ordinarily we will see15-20 different deer, morning and evening. Granted, some of the ones seen in the morning are likely some of the ones seen in the evening . Most of the time I'll have 15-20 on me and there be just as many on my dad at the same time. Of 7 different hunters around my area Saturday morning ( 1-5 miles ) only 24 deer seen. Out of 8 hunters that evening, only 15 deer seen total. Numbers of deer still way down for us and just can't figure out why. Who knows, maybe they aren't moving because the acorns.
    Could be EHD
    Depending on what county your in or area you hunt. I know Franklin County lost over 70% of the herd in certain parts of the county. I do a little dog hunting in franklin county between early bow season and November then again in December. Guys I dog hunt with said they did not jump one deer last Saturday. Normally they run multiple deer throughout the day but not one this past Saturday. EHD wiped them out and it could be the same in many counties and just hasn't been confirmed yet.
    Getting worried here. I hunt the North Wake/Durham co. line and I figured as the season wore on, bucks would come out of the woodwork... or any deer for that matter - not much to speak of which may actually confirm the possibility of disease being the culprit? I spoke to the landowner of the property I hunt on who has clover, oats and winter peas in his backyard and says this is the first year he doesn't have at least 6 deer every night feeding - matter of fact = NONE all season!

    There is no doubt we have an incredible crop of acorns this year but I'm not buying that at this point.. something's not right. My trail cams are usually picking up alot of deer but I'm seeing a handful of pics here and there. Please others weigh in on what you're seeing.
    Same in Parts of Granville and most of Franklin
    Deer population is way down. I hunted in Granville County the last two days and didn't see 1 deer. I have hunted this same land for 6 or 7 yrs now and never has this happened. It should have been ideal hunting today. Its very disappointing and discouraging.
    deer movement
    I talked to a buddy who hunts a farm in Halifax county where they practice qdm he has yet to get one let alone see a shooter and that's indicative of the club. I went Friday afternoon and pulled the cards on two cameras both with corn & mineral supplements, had a selfie on one and the same four deer on the other..all night pics too. doe and yearling were there the day before at 5:30 but that's it.(btw, I sat till dark and I did not hear a single shot, that's just wrong) walkin the path to my blind I see very limited tracks and other sign as well. I do not have as much time this year to spend on the stand so I get out when I can. I agree, it makes for a long sit when there ain't nothing on the usual tho, I'll hit it as much as I can this week and see what up...
    Again, for those who have knocked'em down congrats, because you are the exception to the rule this year..
    Good hunting
    2014 Terrible Deer Year for Me
    I was glad to see that I was not the only one in the state seeing lower deer numbers this year. I have been hunting in the Piedmont region for 20 years and usually have 3 deer in the freezer by now. This year I took 2 weeks off of work and hunted daily, more than I usually hunt. I only saw three total deer while hunting. I hunted several different areas including Jordan game lands. Usually driving in to the Game Lands I see deer everywhere on the sides of the roads, but not this year. I am not sure what is going on but something is very different this year. It will be interesting to read the actual state harvest numbers at the end of the year. I will continue to hunt deer hard into December now when I usually can get onto ducks. Good Luck Everyone.
    They are gone.
    Well the month of November is just about done for. I usually see anywhere from 5-10 different bucks a day during the month of November, I've seen 8 different bucks total all season. Usually see 10-20 does a day, the most I've seen all season in a day is 8. I'd say that easily 75% of the deer around where I'm hunting are gone. I'm thankful to see what I'm seeing because the large majority around my area are seeing on average of about 3-0 deer all day. Don't know what has happened, but something has wiped them out big time.