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Max Online: 16728 @ 03/25/12 08:51 AM
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#6425183 - 08/25/16 11:11 PM Low fence herd genetics improvement question
338ultra Online   content
Pro Tracker

Registered: 12/10/10
Posts: 1656
Loc: Waco, TX
My landowner mentioned to me here a while back that he was thinking that we should release some farm raised deer with superior genetics into our native herd. I would love to see the results of this science fair project, but at the same time I want to protect my landowners investment. We have 1,800 acres and most of the neighboring hunting pressure comes from our east side. The only way I can see this working is to build a soft release pen about 50 acres in size. Purchase 10 bred does and let them fawn in that 50 acres to establish their home zone. Introduce a buck into the enclosure with the does the following fall and have them bred back before releasing them into the rest of the ranch. Anyone have any experience in this? Is this a doable plan that I've got? What's the cost for bred does with good provable genetics?
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#6425193 - 08/25/16 11:29 PM Re: Low fence herd genetics improvement question [Re: 338ultra]
txshntr Online   content
T-Rex Arms

Registered: 09/24/10
Posts: 33685
Loc: Mansfield, Texas
There are others that will have much better information than I will and much more experience in this area but I will put my 2cents out there anyway.

There would be a few questions that would make the answer a little easier and I would think you would want to answer before proceeding, like: What is your current deer density? What is your carrying capacity on the 1800 acres? What is your current buck/doe ratio? What is your current age structure? Etc...

Without that information, I would assume that you have the answers to those questions and have an idea of how many deer per acre you can reasonably carry and physically keep on a LF place. I would also assume that you would have an idea of the deer that you would want to "replace" in the native herd that currently resides on the ranch.

Since you are talking about purchasing 10 bred does, it would appear that you are working on a long term plan in an attempt to increase the maximum genetic potential on your place over the course of multiple generations and aren't looking for any immediate impact. IMO, to attempt to increase the maximum genetic potential, you would already be at the maximum genetic potential of the native herd and are currently maintaining that.

Once you release the deer with superior genetics, what is your plan to keep them from getting shot during population control measures and maintaining your CC?

I have watched a HF ranch that only had native genetics within the fence do basically the same thing. They did not work through many of the issues I have mentioned above and their herd was not at the maximum genetic potential when they started releasing the bred doe and when they introduced high end bred bucks into the place. The native genetics washed out the superior genetics and the top end was not increased due to the introduction. On occasion, some odd ball deer would pop out that was well above the average, but not worth the $40k they spent in introduction of the superior genetic animals.

I haven't priced bred doe and the price will depend on the caliber of buck that they were exposed to, but I would assume you would pay around $2000-$2500 each.

Even if I had the money, I wouldn't do it, but if you and the owner decide to do it, I hope it works out for you! Good luck up
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#6425335 - 08/26/16 07:13 AM Re: Low fence herd genetics improvement question [Re: 338ultra]
338ultra Online   content
Pro Tracker

Registered: 12/10/10
Posts: 1656
Loc: Waco, TX
Thanks for the additional questions and those are things we have thought about and info we keep track of. We are on MLD Level 3 already so we keep a close tab on cc, buck:doe ratio and recruitment. That is part of the reason for putting up the soft release pen, to give us a couple more seasons to reduce the herd in this part of the ranch so we don't jeapordize the cc. My idea would be to leave the ear tags in the does to identify them so we're not shooting out high $ does. If possible we would try to eat tag the fawns as they drop as well. Hard to do in a 50 acres pen, but try none the less. Another aspect of this pen would be the direction it faces as well as the terrain that is in it. Location is basically our sanctuary already. The west side of the pen would be part of one of our large food plots. Get the deer used to going out there but going back east into their bedding areas and staying away from the direction of the neighbors hunters. During the rut all bets are off, but will hopefully condition the deer to pattern a certain way. But to answer your question in a long winded way, we would be thinning the herd in this part of the ranch to make room for the new introduction. On the other parts of the ranch density is not as high, but the deer seem to roam more. The deer that are in this particular part of the ranch have a smaller home radius from what we have seen, due to habitat and terrain.
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#6425337 - 08/26/16 07:20 AM Re: Low fence herd genetics improvement question [Re: 338ultra]
btpatriot Offline
Tracker

Registered: 07/18/10
Posts: 522
Loc: Beeville, Tx
You cannot release breeder deer into low fence pasture anymore.

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#6425340 - 08/26/16 07:24 AM Re: Low fence herd genetics improvement question [Re: 338ultra]
btpatriot Offline
Tracker

Registered: 07/18/10
Posts: 522
Loc: Beeville, Tx
If you build a small high fence pasture on your low fence property and release breeder deer into it then later knowingly release those deer into the low fence and get caught you may have some legal troubles.


Edited by btpatriot (08/26/16 07:36 AM)

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#6425356 - 08/26/16 07:35 AM Re: Low fence herd genetics improvement question [Re: 338ultra]
btpatriot Offline
Tracker

Registered: 07/18/10
Posts: 522
Loc: Beeville, Tx
As for result of this type of "science project" the result are going to be determined by the health of your pasture and the deer you have and will put in it. If the pasture isn't already properly managed then it will be difficult to get desired results. Also you must consider that you have to introduce both sides with improved genetics because it takes two to tango. When releasing bred doe don't assume they will be as prolific as they are in the pens. In the pens they will most likely have twins every year with an average of 1.5 making it to weaning. However in your pasture you should assume your fawn crop and recruitment will be the average of the pasture.


Edited by btpatriot (08/26/16 07:38 AM)

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#6425527 - 08/26/16 09:31 AM Re: Low fence herd genetics improvement question [Re: 338ultra]
Eland Slayer Online   content
Extreme Tracker

Registered: 06/03/08
Posts: 4665
Loc: Houston, TX
First of all (as btpatriot said), it is no longer legal to release breeder deer on a low fenced property.

Second of all, even if it were still allowed, the landowner would be much better off investing the money in a high fence around his entire property and managing the native deer....rather than buying expensive deer and letting them run to the neighbors to be shot.
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#6434401 - 09/01/16 10:30 AM Re: Low fence herd genetics improvement question [Re: Eland Slayer]
therancher Online   content
THF Trophy Hunter

Registered: 07/09/13
Posts: 5355
Loc: Mountain Home, Uvalde, and Big...
You cannot permanently significantly change genetics on a native herd even behind a high fence unless you remove all or virtually all the natives. There have been untold millions spent in Texas proving this fact over and over again.

I'm not a breeder so I don't know what the laws are concerning TC1 deer into low fence but I know you can release them into high fences without testing.

I also know your plan to ear tag fawns would have been illegal without a breeders permit.

Besides the fact that neither you nor your landowner have educated yourselves on current laws, you really should do yourself and him a favor and pay attention to what has been learned by others over decades of "science projects".
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#6434678 - 09/01/16 02:37 PM Re: Low fence herd genetics improvement question [Re: therancher]
btpatriot Offline
Tracker

Registered: 07/18/10
Posts: 522
Loc: Beeville, Tx
Originally Posted By: therancher
I also know your plan to ear tag fawns would have been illegal without a breeders permit.
You can also tag fawns under a Deer Management Permit which has nothing to do with a breeders permit. However DMP requires a high fence as well. Just a little more education even for you rancher. wink

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#6434822 - 09/01/16 04:08 PM Re: Low fence herd genetics improvement question [Re: btpatriot]
therancher Online   content
THF Trophy Hunter

Registered: 07/09/13
Posts: 5355
Loc: Mountain Home, Uvalde, and Big...
Originally Posted By: btpatriot
Originally Posted By: therancher
I also know your plan to ear tag fawns would have been illegal without a breeders permit.
You can also tag fawns under a Deer Management Permit which has nothing to do with a breeders permit. However DMP requires a high fence as well. Just a little more education even for you rancher. wink


You indicated you had a low fence. Which makes tagging illegal.

Feel free to waste all the money you want to waste though, money flow rocks my world. cheers
_________________________
"I cant wait to see if he plays this week, and if he does if he can actually break 50 percent completion ratio. Haha or maybe even throw for 200 yards. Possibly break a QB rating of 75." - Texas Tatonka
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#6452118 - 09/14/16 03:14 PM Re: Low fence herd genetics improvement question [Re: 338ultra]
maximus_flavius Online   content
Bird Dog

Registered: 04/24/13
Posts: 386
I don't know much, but I wouldn't spend any money to release any animals on a low fence place. Your only subsidizing your neighbors hunting.

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