Idaho nonresident mule deer changes

Nickjohn44

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Feb 14, 2018
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New for 2021 most units will have a 10% nonresident quota cap. With the 2021 tags going on sale in 10 days i foresee many units selling out before the first of the year. Narrowing down a unit in idaho has me combining through threads, onx, Google earth and gohunt. Think I may have it narrowed down to unit 21 and 39. I hunted 39 this year but lack of weather and migration made it hard to find a mature buck. We seen plenty of does and a handful of 2pts and 3pts. Also leaning towards some of the more wilderness units like 19 or 27. Anyone have experience with these units? I'm not asking for locations just more curious about the deer populations.
 
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LONE HUNTER

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No idea about the units you mentioned. I am really interested to see how fast tags sell out. I like to hunt one of the more popular units so who knows if I will get a tag. I will say the deer hunting is pretty rough so people may not be super quick on the trigger to buy a tag but who knows. As far as where to go? I have scouted maybe 5 different units in southeast Idaho and I didn't really start doing better hunting up there until I just focused on one small section of a unit thats maybe 5x5 miles in size. I think if you learned a fair amount about 39.... if I was you thats where I would be headed.
 
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Nickjohn44

Nickjohn44

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No idea about the units you mentioned. I am really interested to see how fast tags sell out. I like to hunt one of the more popular units so who knows if I will get a tag. I will say the deer hunting is pretty rough so people may not be super quick on the trigger to buy a tag but who knows. As far as where to go? I have scouted maybe 5 different units in southeast Idaho and I didn't really start doing better hunting up there until I just focused on one small section of a unit thats maybe 5x5 miles in size. I think if you learned a fair amount about 39.... if I was you thats where I would be headed.
Yes it will be very interesting to see how fast they go. Idaho just put up how many tags will be offered for each unit and some are as low as 15 tags.
 

CApighunter

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Killed a decent 3x4 on opening day in 2019 in one of the units you listed, haven’t hunted the other 3. Pick the one that looks the best on google and go have fun.🤘🏻
 

Selway

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Does anyone know if there's plans to change the ability to exchange your general tag for a controlled unit tag if successful in the draw?

In the past I've always waited until after the draw before buying general, but I think those days are over if I want to hunt where I normally do.
 

LONE HUNTER

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From what I read, no that rule still seems to be in place. I would double check though.
 

87TT

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Should be able to exchange a tag if you draw or another becomes available up until the season starts.
 

brn2hnt

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Does anyone know if there's plans to change the ability to exchange your general tag for a controlled unit tag if successful in the draw?

In the past I've always waited until after the draw before buying general, but I think those days are over if I want to hunt where I normally do.
Still good to go.

In addition, if you do not buy an OTC but DO draw a controlled hunt, you can still buy the tag, no need for an exchange.
 

87TT

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Still good to go.

In addition, if you do not buy an OTC but DO draw a controlled hunt, you can still buy the tag, no need for an exchange.
If any left. My guess is won't be many after the draw.
 

brn2hnt

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If any left. My guess is won't be many after the draw.
What do you mean "if any left?"

My understanding from speaking with IDFG is that the controlled hunt tags are built into the quota, and their availability will be unrelated to how fast OTC tags sell.
 

87TT

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Correct, but if you don't have an OTC tag, They may sell out before the draw. They are limited by unit too now. So the popular units may sell out quick. Some only have 14 or 15 tags now. Sounded like in his question that he wanted an OTC tag but wanted to enter the draw also.
 

Sleghammer

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As far as I'm aware, the wilderness unit deer densities will be lower. I would expect deer density to be better in 39. However, hunter pressure is greater in 39 and will continue to increase despite the NR cap. Residents flood that boise river unit. I was one of them for many years.

If you've already hunted there I think your chances get better by trying again instead of trying a new area every year.
 
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Nickjohn44

Nickjohn44

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As far as I'm aware, the wilderness unit deer densities will be lower. I would expect deer density to be better in 39. However, hunter pressure is greater in 39 and will continue to increase despite the NR cap. Residents flood that boise river unit. I was one of them for many years.

If you've already hunted there I think your chances get better by trying again instead of trying a new area every year.
Yeah ive been told the same thing from a few other guys about sticking it out in 39. Just makes the gut churn thinking about 12,500 hunters in one unit. On the other hand I have heard many stories of guys doing the frank and seeing 0 deer. So honestly its seems to be a catch-22, less people less deer, more people more deer.
 

87TT

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Yeah ive been told the same thing from a few other guys about sticking it out in 39. Just makes the gut churn thinking about 12,500 hunters in one unit. On the other hand I have heard many stories of guys doing the frank and seeing 0 deer. So honestly its seems to be a catch-22, less people less deer, more people more deer.
More people less wolves.
 
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