Wyoming Antelope - Bad News

Laramie

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I think everyone should expect further reductions in antelope tags for the foreseeable future. WG&F have confirmed an EHD outbreak in the Eastern half of Wyoming. It is mainly impacting antelope and whitetails so far according to the article.
 
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Laramie

Laramie

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Does it affect elk?
It can but it's not as common. Nebraska lost a huge portion of it's deer herd to EHD about 10 years ago. The elk population wasn't really impacted at that time.
 

D.Blake

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It can but it's not as common. Nebraska lost a huge portion of it's deer herd to EHD about 10 years ago. The elk population wasn't really impacted at that time.

Nebraska's outbreak was terrible... we found several dead bucks on the banks of our lake/creek. The whole river bottom just stank like dead deer.

Hopefully you guys get a good frost here soon.
 
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Laramie

Laramie

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Nebraska's outbreak was terrible... we found several dead bucks on the banks of our lake/creek. The whole river bottom just stank like dead deer.

Hopefully you guys get a good frost here soon.
Unfortunately it sounds like a lot of the damage has been done. Frost possibilities for some areas in about a week.
 

Fordguy

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Had EHD sweep through my area in Michigan about 12 years ago. It was awful. Dead deer floating down the rivers, had several get stuck on one of the local dams. Found multiple dead bucks in my swamp that I had been watching for 3 or 4 years. The smell was horrible. It decimated the herd in my area. Took about 5 years for a huntable population to return.
Hopefully the antelope bounce back faster- I've heard that they're much more likely to birth twins or triplets.
 
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Laramie

Laramie

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Had EHD sweep through my area in Michigan about 12 years ago. It was awful. Dead deer floating down the rivers, had several get stuck on one of the local dams. Found multiple dead bucks in my swamp that I had been watching for 3 or 4 years. The smell was horrible. It decimated the herd in my area. Took about 5 years for a huntable population to return.
Hopefully the antelope bounce back faster- I've heard that they're much more likely to birth twins or triplets.
Antelope aren't quite as prolific as whitetails and they deal with some pretty harsh Wyoming weather. I would personally vote for massive tag reductions for a few years to give them a chance to bounce back. The 4000 they cut this year isn't going to cut it from what we have seen. 2-3 years of no doe hunting would go a long ways in some areas as long as we didn't have a winter kill during the time span.
 

WCB

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They should cut Antelope doe tags in general just like Mule Deer doe tags with or without EHD. Eastern Wy gets hit with EHD or Blue Tongue every few years. Have rancher friends and it seems like every 5 or 6 years it happens.
 
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Laramie

Laramie

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They should cut Antelope doe tags in general just like Mule Deer doe tags with or without EHD. Eastern Wy gets hit with EHD or Blue Tongue every few years. Have rancher friends and it seems like every 5 or 6 years it happens.
It's a balance. If they allow the population to get above the winter range carrying capacity, they have mass winter kills. Harvesting does is good when the numbers dictate it... right now they do not in much of the state.
 
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Laramie

Laramie

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A little better article discussing it -
"If disease managers identify substantial impacts to wildlife, it could curtail hunting seasons. Game and Fish will continue to monitor the extent of the disease across the state."

 
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Laramie

Laramie

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Here is the map of the confirmed locations being impacted -
1631645657687.png

If you click the link, you can zoom in for greater detail. It is not an all inclusive map, just what they have found so far.
 

j_volt

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I drew an antelope doe tag in 47 this year that I likely wont have time to use. It feels like letting it burn is the best thing to do anyway.
 
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Laramie

Laramie

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I drew an antelope doe tag in 47 this year that I likely wont have time to use. It feels like letting it burn is the best thing to do anyway.
Shooting bucks this fall won't hurt and guys shouldn't feel guilty about hunting. Those tags take years to get. I wanted to get the word out so people weren't surprised by the additional cuts coming to next years tags. It may get pretty hard to draw an antelope permit for a few years.
 

cb122

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A little better article discussing it -
"If disease managers identify substantial impacts to wildlife, it could curtail hunting seasons. Game and Fish will continue to monitor the extent of the disease across the state."


As a hunter new to big game this will be my first time paying close attention to an ehd outbreak. You mention a possible decrease in tags if the population declines due to the disease. Is lowering tags specific to units with ehd outbreak or across the board statewide? Thanks.
 

ClearCreek

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WY
As a hunter new to big game this will be my first time paying close attention to an ehd outbreak. You mention a possible decrease in tags if the population declines due to the disease. Is lowering tags specific to units with ehd outbreak or across the board statewide? Thanks.
Licenses would be reduced or adjusted in areas where population reductions were documented.

Not across the board statewide.

ClearCreek
 

WCB

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It's a balance. If they allow the population to get above the winter range carrying capacity, they have mass winter kills. Harvesting does is good when the numbers dictate it... right now they do not in much of the state.
I understand the "balance" but there are very very few areas if any where Antelope or Mule deer are over winter carrying capacity or elk for that matter. Now obviously droughts and bad winters can change that a little but the seasons an tag allotments are already set before that comes into play.

I agree with your other post that shooting bucks won't really have any effect on populations but unfortunately guys that had 2-3 does tags will still stack them up.
 
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Laramie

Laramie

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I understand the "balance" but there are very very few areas if any where Antelope or Mule deer are over winter carrying capacity or elk for that matter. Now obviously droughts and bad winters can change that a little but the seasons an tag allotments are already set before that comes into play.

I agree with your other post that shooting bucks won't really have any effect on populations but unfortunately guys that had 2-3 does tags will still stack them up.
There are many areas of the state where elk populations are well above objectives. Imo, we are living the "good old days" for elk.
 

AdamW

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Oct 27, 2015
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I’ve been keeping an eye on this. I have built a few points and 2022 was looking like my first year for trying WY antelope. Health of the population is way more important than me, but a bummer to hear. I will keep my ears open.
 

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