How To Manage A Deer Herd? Ask Kentucky!

I will start off by saying that I am no where near to what anyone would call a deer expert.  When it comes to managing a deer herd, all I care about is how I can manage to fill up my freezer with whatever walks by me that day.  Is that the correct way to look at our deer population, I don’t care.  But, I do like hearing about how people have taken a deer starved area and thru quality deer management and hunting management, that area has turned into a deer rich area.  Or in the case of this blog, a deer rich state.  Kentucky

In the past, the big names for quality deer hunting or should I skip that and get to the point.  In the past, most people just cared about the big bucks.  I am talking deer, and I guess the green kind also.  When most of the country talked big bucks, they almost always referred to Illinois and especially the golden triangle area of Pike, Brown and Adams counties.  While those counties are pretty much washed up now as far as book class bucks, the attention is moving.  Which I am glad for all this.  You can all now focus your attention to states that actually have a government that cares about QDM and has proven success in this.  Lets look at Kentucky.  They have the Kentucky Department of Wildlife Resources that is a separate entity from the KY Government.  They have the sole purpose to manage their wildlife and recreation for the state and do what it takes to make it thrive.  THAT IS GREAT.  I live in Illinois where we don’t have that.  We have a Department of Natural Resources which is just a savings account for the rest of our government.  I guess we have to pay for all our ex-governors in jail somehow.  So needless to say, our deer herd has gone to the crapper and our DNR isn’t going to do anything about it.  They are getting paid to look the other way anyway.  But Kentucky, look at them.  Their awesome DOW has taken an entire state that had small deer herds and turned it into one of the top states.  They go from a nobody in Boone & Crockett to probably going to be the #1 for the 2012-2013 season.  That’s if Wisconsin doesn’t beat them.  So congrats Kentucky Department of Wildlife Resources for a job well done.

I hope every hunter in the country reads this and decides they should skip their trip to Illinois this year and go hunt Kentucky.  Sorry KY hunters.  I hope your state doesn’t crumble like mine did.

If you want to read more about the great success of Kentucky.  I highly recommend this report that was written by the Kentucky Department of Wildlife Resources.  It has every detail on the growth of deer, hunting and even record book entries and shows all the progress they made.

Click to access 2012deerreport.pdf


  • kennethgose September 7, 2012 at 4:55 pm

    It’s nice that fellow hunters alike have them same thoughts as I.My main goal in every season whether it be rabbit,deer ,dove,turkey which every it may be is to fill my freezer for my family.Times are hard here in KY and there’s been hunts that I hated to kill a large buck that I knew was good herd material but I have to feed my family.With seasons being cut short for folks like me that can’t go everyday and pick what I want to kill , and there is a bunch of folks in the same boat…well it gives mature bucks time to grow.I usually take the first deer no matter what size or gender.Anyway thanks for sharing the report~!

  • Robin Follette September 8, 2012 at 2:34 pm

    Northern Maine is struggling to rebuild its deer population after a very hard winter two years ago. The snow was deer than the tops of the deers’ heads and fell so hard and fast that they were literally buried before they could wear down a trail. Add coyotes and poachers into the mix and our deer are few and far between. Last winter was easy — little snow and unusually warm. They needed that. I’ve seen quite a few does and fawns this year but only one buck. We can’t shoot does for obvious reasons. That’s been hard on the bucks. People are shooting crotch horns and happy to have them. I think we need to start paying more attention to conservation, food plots, winter deer yards and close a lot of our zones to hunting for a few years. We can’t see what we have in the gene pool if we keep killing 18 month old deer. Inland Fisheries & Wildlife is doing a good job managing what we have. We’d be a lot further ahead if they could manage the weather.

  • Denny Murray September 8, 2012 at 2:27 pm

    This year will mark the start of my first ever deer season. I don’t think I’m going to be too picky on what I shoot. All I want is to have the opportunity to sling an arrow at a nice buck. Thanks for the article. Good hunting to everyone out there, no matter where you’re hunting.

  • Anonymous December 4, 2012 at 9:11 pm

    Stay out of my home state! 🙂


Leave a comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: