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#5957471 - 10/02/15 09:09 AM IH35 - East vs. West
turbo0001 Offline
Light Foot

Registered: 11/11/14
Posts: 10
Forgive my ignorance but can someone explain why the regs are different between areas east of IH35 vs. west of IH35 in counties like Williamson, Travis, etc? (And continuing east like Bastrop county that has similarly restrictive regs) I understand those differences come from the differences in deer densities, so I guess my question is why is there such a difference between the two sides? It would seem like the East is “greener” which would imply the habitat east is more conducive to supporting animals than west. Is it human density is higher east, or smaller plots of land so therefore higher hunting pressure? Did some event occur in the past that brought the deer population below critical mass? What gives? Please educate me.

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#5957492 - 10/02/15 09:18 AM Re: IH35 - East vs. West [Re: turbo0001]
rifleman Offline
Sparkly Pants

Registered: 11/19/08
Posts: 43776
Loc: Kingwood
All the above.

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#5957596 - 10/02/15 10:08 AM Re: IH35 - East vs. West [Re: turbo0001]
Bbear Offline
Tracker

Registered: 11/24/13
Posts: 596
Loc: West Texas
Part of it is deer densities, some is people densities. There's a larger population of deer west of I-35 in those areas than there is east of it.
There is also the effort by TPWD to 'improve' the deer taken from east of I-35 with the advent of the antler restrictions etc.

Part of all of this is due to the drought of the 1950's. For nearly 10 years the state went nearly without rain. The result was a near 100% die-off of whitetails in some areas. One study from A&M in Llano county suggested 95-97% of the deer herd in that area died due to starvation and lack of water. When the drought ended in '58-60 the herds started coming back.
Many that hunted in the areas west of I-35 will remember doe permits and those to the east may remember having 'doe days'. The result in a lot of the areas to the west of I-35 was/is an over population of deer, hence less restrictive limits.

These aren't the only reasons for the differences but they are some of the reasons.
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#5957619 - 10/02/15 10:19 AM Re: IH35 - East vs. West [Re: turbo0001]
Mr. T. Offline
Pro Tracker

Registered: 11/05/14
Posts: 1608
Loc: Fort Worth - Hunt in Eastland ...

Very well said and very true. I'm so old I remember that drought. You could say it was almost the dust bowl all over again. One day when it started raining, not the sprinkle that was all we got for years, My father took us all outside to stand in the rain. I was 9 at the time and living in Fort Worth. I remember looking up and down my street and at every single house, people were standing outside in the rain. The drought had broken, but the damage was done for many years to come in terms of the deer herds.
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