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Friday, June 14, 2024
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Citrus Bucks and Songdogs

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I’ve got to tell you folks just how much I’m enjoying this cooler weather. Just the other day I actually was cold while sitting in my ground blind.  And with the cooler weather, there has been a significant amount of daytime activity by the bucks and harvest reports are pouring in.  I’m very happy to announce I was fortunate enough to use a muzzleloading, flint lock rifle to send an invitation to a fat forkhorn for a ride on my tailgate.  But, I’ll tell you more about that hunt another time.

Now, I’d like to remind ya’ll that this weekend will be the season opener in the Citrus WMA.  Citrus WMA is the crown jewels of wildlife management areas in our area and encompasses over fifty-three thousand acres just north of our county line.  This weekend will see the arrival of five hundred permitted bowhunters, for the first of three hunts taking place between this Saturday, Novmber 3rd through the 25th.  For bag limits and a list of game, legal to take, you can go to www.MyFWC.com and look up the WMA brochure.  But, I can assure you, each of the five hundred archers will be targeting whitetails.  This hunt is buck only, and from what I’ve been seeing while out and about on the WMA, it will be a productive hunt.  Bucks will be cruising the edges downwind side of the thickets with primary activity being throughout the middle of the day.  The first rut is about to wind up, but they will be still searching for a whiff of estrous scent and will begin spending a little of their time feeding, so oak flats downwind of thick bedding areas will be a slam dunk.

I will be out with the old recurve myself and have a couple fine eight pointers on game cam, so I’ll have to keep you posted.  But, on my trail cams also are a few different coyotes using the same trail as the deer.  Not cool, as I surely will be attempting to toss an arrow their way first opportunity I can.  Coyotes are terribly detrimental to the health of any native wildlife, especially deer.  A pack of coyotes can take an adult deer down in a matter of minutes.  That is why I so greatly admire men like DC Sims of Brooksville.  DC wrote me an email about his efforts to hunt and control the invasive coyotes and even shared some photos.  And, with his permission, I’ll share his message with all of you.

“My name is DC sims and I have been coyote hunting for about six years now.  What attracted me to the sport was the challenge of getting a creature that you hardly ever see, to come to you for a close up and personal encounter.  I am mostly known for only carrying my dad’s old shotgun and my handmade hand calls, which sound like a rabbit in distress.”  DC not only hunts the coyotes whenever possible, but he runs a successful trapline for them.  

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“Last year I decided I’d start trapping coyotes for a local cattle rancher.  Coyotes can take many caves at birthing season, so I use foothold traps, properly permitted.  I prefer the foothold method over snares because with foothold traps they do not harm the animal.  That way, if I end up catching a Fox that are a protected species I can let him go unharmed.”

As always, if you have any comments, questions or just want to share your success from the woods, give me a shout out at [email protected].  God Bless and Good Hunting!


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