Rate Your Deer Season Survey 2023-2024

Brad Gill | February 3, 2024

Georgia’s deer season rating sees yet another uptick from hunters rating their seasons at “Excellent.” While the percentage of happier hunters rises less than 1 percent, it does bring the season total of those rating their seasons as Excellent to 25.7%. This is an all-time record since GON began conducting the survey more than two decades ago.

We had 1,581 responses to the season survey. All county comments are below.

In addition to the Rate Your Season Survey, GON readers also answered questions on out-of-state hunting and the legalization of hunting deer over feed. We received 475 comments on baiting and 750 miscellaneous comments. All of those comments have been processed and are below.

For each county you will see a letter and number, which shows the number of season ratings for that county (e-excellent, g-good, etc.).

Appling Co. G-1, F-3, P-1

Good: I saw several bucks and even tagged out on two nice 8-points.

Fair: Having trouble with trespassers and poachers, mainly at night time. Nobody seems to care. It’s very frustrating.

Fair: Quality of bucks is in decline.

Fair: I didn’t see many big deer, although I did harvest a nice buck. I had a lot of small bucks with messed-up antlers that needed to be culled but didn’t want to waste my tag in case I saw another big buck. I’ve been seeing some does late but don’t like to shoot because of them carrying new babies for spring.

Poor: Did not hunt this year.

Atkinson Co. E-1

Excellent: Saw lots of deer this season, including several high-quality bucks.

Bacon Co. G-1, F-1, P-2

Poor: Deer just wouldn’t come out much during the day. Worse season I’ve ever had.

Poor: No kills. No lands access.

Baldwin Co. E-3, G-2, F-4, P-1

Fair: No mature bucks.

Fair: Deer seemed to be nocturnal from the get go! Acorn crop was tremendous and hence deer tended to stay in the woods. Mostly saw does only during daylight hours.

Poor: Did not see any rut or any bucks over 6-points and wider than 10 inches.

Banks Co. G-3, F-1, P-2

Good: Saw a lot of deer and enjoyed time in the woods.

Good: I haven’t seen as many good bucks this year, but it has been a good season.

Fair: Not enough dates on local WMAs. Buck only on national forest also limited my harvest opportunities.

Poor: Deer movement and sightings were way down. Very unusual patterns, not normal.

Barrow Co. G-4, F-1

Good: I saw plenty of deer—maybe not the shooter buck I was hoping for. At least in my area, deer numbers seems to be strong.

Good: Saw a lot of deer.

Good: I did not hunt as much as I normally would; however, the time afield was very good. I saw plenty of deer, and even though I did not get a shot—I bowhunt strictly traditional—at the buck I was hunting, I had a great time. As I have gotten older, that is what is most important to me. If I bring home some venison or a nice rack, well, that is just a bonus.

Fair: Deer population getting less every year.

Bartow Co. G-6, F-2, P-1

Good: Saw some good deer on cameras. Got one of them. The others went poof. Our rut was funny this year. Our rut in Bartow ranges from Thanksgiving to the second week of December.

Good: Was able to take deer but a local WMA was removed (Pine Log) and that condensed the local hunters into the same WMAs.

Good: Was able to accomplish my goal of taking three deer this year, with one being a buck I’m proud of. Timber cutting on my lease has been going most of deer season, as well.

Good: Lots of action in my area. Harvested a nice 8-point with my bow.

Fair: Lost half of our land during bow season. We never recovered, a very slow year.

Poor: Deer movement was not as good because the acorn crop was plentiful.

Ben Hill Co. G-2, F-1, P-1

Good: Plenty of does and several bucks in my areas.

Good: Saw lots of deer. Several nice bucks but young.

Poor: Observed less deer.

Berrien Co. E-1, G-4, F-2

Excellent: Saw lots of deer, killed a good buck.

Good: A lot of buck numbers.

Good: Saw many deer. Didn’t get on the big one.

Good: Plenty of deer, just didn’t get a big one.

Good: Was unable to go deer hunting very often. However, when I did go, I was fortunate enough to see deer.

Bibb Co. E-2, G-2, F-2

Excellent: Saw a lot of good bucks.

Good: Didn’t have as much time this year.

Good: One nice buck harvested with numerous younger bucks seen, all having great potential.

Fair: I went from hunting private residential land for years to public only when I moved over 100 miles away. Very different and less deer.

Bleckley Co. E-3, G-2, F-3, P-1

Excellent: Harvested 8-point buck.

Excellent: Saw lots of deer. Mainly does with many being mature. Saw several small 6- and 8-point bucks.

Excellent: Was a good year. Saw a lot of deer after the bears moved out and pigs were shot at a few times. We only shoot mature bucks and very few does on our 2,000-acre lease. We have seen the quality of our bucks and amount of does increase in the past few years. The work we put in food plots is paying off. Also, we invest in coyote control that we feel has helped a ton. Seeing more small game and quail. Will try to put some pig traps in after deer season to control them. They are starting to get pretty bad. Can’t use feeders for deer, as the bears tear them up. Killed our first deer over 150 inches this year. Saw a few bucks in the 140 range and let them walk.

Good: Saw deer on most hunts. Had a few decent bucks on camera that all need to grow but are very promising. Used our awesome public-land opportunities to fill my freezer.

Good: Saw deer every time I hunted, even though we don’t have that great of a population on our property.

Fair: I was not able to hunt much this year due to health.

Fair: Lack of quality bucks, crowding around our available land, landowners limiting adequate safe access to property rented by poorly managed roads.

Poor: No food due to late freeze. I saw very few deer. First time in 50 years that I haven’t harvested a deer.

Brantley Co. G-1, F-1, P-1

Good: Saw plenty of deer.

Fair: Only got one opportunity on a mature buck and lost it bowhunting. Went to multiple WMAs and enjoyed scouting and seeing lots of deer. I just only shoot mature bucks.

Poor: Dog hunters ruin our still hunting all the time.

Brooks Co. E-2, G-4, F-1, P-1

Excellent: We’ve gotten to spend quality time with friends and family all season and had our most successful season on top of it.

Excellent: Deer numbers are strong and age structure seems to be good and getting better.

Good: Saw lots of bucks and activity.

Good: I did shoot an 8-point buck earlier in the season. Only saw smaller bucks after that.

Good: Killed a nice buck.

Fair: Not many bucks.

Poor: Did not see the first shooter.

Bryan Co. G-1

Bulloch Co. E-1, G-8, F-2, P-3

Excellent: Seen more mature bucks this year than any. Late season has been slow but that’s typical.

Good: Grandson got trophy buck and saw many does during his hunting.

Good: Saw plenty of deer and nice bucks.

Good: Saw deer. Weather was good.

Good: Saw deer but not as in past seasons. Cameras showed most activity at night.

Good: Saw decent deer. All seemed healthy.

Good: Saw deer.

Good: No shortage of deer.

Fair: Beavers caused property to flood.

Fair: Saw fewer deer than usual.

Poor: Very little deer seen compared to previous years.

Poor: Did not see deer in shooting hours. Deer stay nocturnal all season, even on private land  Make baiting illegal again.

Burke Co. E-6, G-5, F-1, P-4

Excellent: I harvested all that I wanted.

Excellent: Saw plenty of deer.

Excellent: Saw more quality bucks this year.

Excellent: We have a high doe population, and I was able to harvest four does. I only saw one yearly buck, but I can’t eat antlers, so all was good.

Excellent: I got to watch my 5-year-old son not only take his first deer (doe) but also kill his first buck, a spike. Then I got to take my 3-year-old son and harvest a doe with him in the stand with me and his Uncle Pat. I also harvested a nice buck this year. As a family, we put five deer in the freezer. It’s been an absolute amazing deer season!

Excellent: Shot my largest buck in 30 years of hunting. Also saw plenty of deer with potential for the upcoming years. Doe density appeared to be very good, as well.

Good: Saw a decent number of deer for public land.

Good: Due to not hunting as much this season.

Good: Not as many deer in the woods this year.

Good: Two mature bucks taken off property. Five-plus years of trapping predators has resulted in deer, turkey and rabbit populations.

Good: Saw plenty deer.

Fair: Saw a lot of deer from opening day of bow season until Nov. 1. For some reason, I have not seen a deer during the day since Nov. 1.

Poor: I’m hunting mostly public land and limited to areas that have rifle season open. I’m also new to the area. I was able to get on deer, but I’m currently learning the area.

Poor: Only saw two deer this season during the daytime.

Poor: I hunted Yuchi WMA and people have no common courtesy when hunting. Also no deer movement. I tried different places and no luck. DNR needs to do better food-plot management or let us hunters put a little corn out a few days before we hunt.

Poor: (1) Fewer of both sexes seen throughout the season. (2) Usually a double rut in the past years, not seen this year. (3) Most does seen are having just one fawn and not two or three. (4) Below average of decent bucks being harvested or seen. (5) EVERYTHING that’s associated with hunting (lease cost, food-plots cost, supplements, fuel, mainly because of Bidenomics has gotten so expensive that the average-wage earner cannot contribute to the betterment of our wildlife as in past. Hunting leases have really gotten out of hand in recent years and continue to do so. Politicians, an especially the timber companies, are destroying our hunting traditions.

Butts Co. E-3, G-1, F-2, P-1

Excellent: I have not killed anything, but my 12-year-old son, who has never shown any interest in shooting guns or hunting, has fallen in love with it and got his first (6-pointer) and his second (a trophy 9-pointer). To me, that is a excellent season.

Excellent: My daughter was able to harvest two target bucks, and I was able to harvest one myself. Deer herd in this area is plentiful and healthy.

Good: I’ve seen a lot of deer and healthier deer around property.

Fair: Lots of does but hardly any bucks.

Fair: I saw a lot of deer very early in the season, then they just disappeared (drastic change). Someone must have one heck of a feed lot close to my property. Good thing I just enjoy being outdoors.

Poor: Very small deer.

Calhoun Co. E-2, G-12

Excellent: Shot deer with bow, rifle and crossbow. Saw deer every time I went hunting. Also got a deer on Chickasawhatchee WMA. Most of all enjoyed hunting with my family.

Excellent: Saw plenty of deer. More bigger bucks than years past. Freezer is full.

Good: Limited amount of hunt time. I’m a non-resident hunter.

Camden Co. E-2, G-9, F-2, P-1

Excellent: Bow season was slow but mid-October through December I saw plenty of deer.

Excellent: I killed the two biggest bucks I have ever killed and spent a lot of time with my boys in the woods.

Good: Harvested eight does and one buck. Passed on small ones. Saw a pile of does and a ton of turkeys at feeders.

Good: Didn’t harvest anything this season due to not being able to get out that much and having to take care of my very sick wife. The couple of times out were great just to be able to get out and sit and meditate in a peaceful bottom, watch the sun rise and listen to the woods come to life.

Good: The bucks were very active along with decent numbers of deer.

Good: Good season with great encounters. Did not harvest many deer.

Good: I killed two deer on a quota hunt but did not see anything on multiple hunts on my private-land hunting club.

Good: While I haven’t harvested a deer, I am seeing more deer than I ever have before on my 110-acre farm. It’s been tough catching up with the older age-class bucks, as they tend to go back to bed off my property prior to sunrise and they don’t seem to get to my property until after sunset. Trail-camera cell data shows a higher number of bucks than in the past, particularly at night and between Oct. 10 and mid November. This has been data collected over the last 10 years.

Good: I harvested three deer this year, which I’ve found from experience enough to fulfill my yearly needs and desire for venison. One 8-point, one 6-point and one mature doe made up my successful season.

Fair: I had several opportunities to harvest deer in the early season; however when the dog clubs start running dogs, deer turn nocturnal, making still hunting more difficult.

Fair: I haven’t harvested a deer yet.

Poor: Overrun with pigs.

Candler Co. G-3, F-1, P-1

Good: Saw several nice bucks.

Good: Saw good potential in 3.5 year olds. Can’t wait to see what next year brings. Doe-to-buck ratio is off. I need to kill some does.

Good: Used buck tags on a cull buck and nice 12-point. Also killed a few healthy does.

Fair: Poor acorn crop and food plots failed twice due to drought. Almost all activity was nocturnal, not just the big boys. I would have rated it poor, but we did manage some for the freezer.

Carroll Co. E-3, G-2, F-2, P-1

Excellent: I shot plenty of does and had multiple opportunities at 8-point or better bucks that I chose to let pass.

Excellent: It’s been a great season for us so far. My family and I have seen deer almost every hunt and have taken enough to get our freezer full! We’ve let a lot of deer walk this year, as well. My son shot two bucks on the youth weekend, my daughter got one the next weekend, and I shot two mature bucks in November. I got two more deer on public land in December.

Excellent: I have owned my 9 acres for 34 years and for the first time I used Spypoint cell cameras. It helped me to see my herd of deer from the couch, and it helped me not to spook the deer not one time. I harvested the biggest buck of my 43 years of hunting on my own property simply because I didn’t pressure the herd from being able to see the deer I had on the property without going into the woods. I have a trail-camera photo of the buck I harvested from years ago and proof that we should let the little ones walk.

Good; Only hunted a handful of times but saw deer every time we hunted.

Good: Saw more bucks than usual.

Fair: Deer only moving at night.

Fair: I also hunt in Heard County. There was little to no rut activity there compared to Carroll County. Most bucks have been strictly nocturnal this season.

Poor: Saw little to no deer, and the ones that I saw were very young.

Catoosa Co. E-1, G-2

Excellent: Killed the most deer this season.

Good: The deer numbers appears to be plentiful. Weather was good. It’s hard to have a bad season if you’re healthy enough to still get outside and get after it.

Good: Saw plenty of deer, including some good bucks in the 150-plus size range. Still letting them walk and get larger in the future. I’m still going out and hunting any and everywhere I can get permission to kill coyotes at night while I have a slight advantage over them. I hope everyone else is able to do the same. The coyote scat that I see while out hunting or fishing generally has deer hair, making up the majority of solids in it, roughly 80 to 90% of the time. Coyotes, without a doubt have been and STILL continue to have THE biggest impact in reducing the numbers of our whitetail deer herd in northwest Georgia. I’m REALLY trying to hunt the coyotes until they’re at the brink of total EXTINCTION.

Chattahoochee Co. E-2, G-1, P-1

Excellent: Two hunts, one 10-point and one 11-point.

Excellent: Saw deer every time.

Poor: Did not see many deer.

Chattooga Co. G-2, F-3, P-2

Good: Saw a lot of deer. Killed a 7-pointer but never had an opportunity to shoot the big one I was hunting.

Good: I have a fair-sized group that runs in my backyard. Had two bucks at beginning of season, but one got hit by a car. The other disappeared, which is not unusual. Several does, though.

Fair: The dry weather effected movement.

Poor: Saw good movement early. Deer seemed to move around the start of November. I blame drought conditions.

Poor: Did not hunt during 2023-24 season.

Cherokee Co. E-7, G-10, F-4

Excellent: I killed my personal best buck and got a picture with my baby boy grabbing the antlers with me.

Excellent: Lot of good buck activity.

Excellent: Saw a lot of deer from the beginning of bow season until now.

Excellent: I shot two nice bucks and one being the biggest I’ve shot in six years. I saw lots of deer on our club and got to see lots of rut activity with bucks fighting and chasing. I also had luck hunting Paulding Forest WMA this season. I really miss Pine Log WMA, as I hunted it every season, also.

Excellent: I saw plenty and killed all my freezer will hold.

Good; Saw deer just about every setting. Killed a nice 7-pointer in early November chasing does.

Good: Good deer population, several mature bucks present.

Good: Saw a lot of deer, killed two bucks, didn’t hunt much after that.

Good: Saw and killed several deer in the limited time I got to hunt.

Good: Overall saw good deer movement with several opportunities at some quality bucks. Passed several nice deer that I hope will be better this coming season. I’d like to see more of the public-land opportunities better managed for habitat and quality deer.

Good: Other than Cherokee County, I hunted several WMAs. Seen A LOT of deer on WMAs and on private in Cherokee.

Good: Got one doe in heavily hunted Allatoona WMA.

Fair: Low deer sightings and trickle rut made for a tough season.

Fair: Did not see a lot of bucks.

Fair: Not many shootable bucks seen.

Fair: Took a decent 10-point on opening morning but deer numbers by camera or physical views were noticeably down. I am fortunate to hunt one of the last large tracts in south Cherokee. We manage and feed with corn and food plots. The only thing I can figure is the acorn crop kept the mature deer in the thick woods and they didn’t have to travel.

Clarke Co. E-3, G-2

Excellent: Saw tons of deer, great harvest numbers. Also tagged my biggest buck to date.

Excellent: The herd looked healthy this year with a good ratio of bucks to does. Rutting activity was very evident from late October to mid November.

Excellent: Two bucks (a nice 10-point) and a doe already in the freezer.

Clay Co. E-1, G-2, F-1

Excellent: Good number of bucks with average to above-average racks. Mature to average young doe ratio very good.

Good: Lots of young up and coming bucks.

Good: It was a good year. Same as last year.

Clayton Co. E-1, G-1

Excellent: Killed a 148-inch 12-point and saw a lot of deer activity.

Good: Saw lots of deer, just not the quality of racks I’d like to see.

Clinch Co. G-1

Good: The deer are acting funny this year.

Cobb Co. E-2, G-2, F-2

Excellent: I will harvest two bucks and 10 does by the end of archery season.

Good: Good amount of deer.

Fair: Saw only does during hunting hours but had pictures of big bucks coming through at night.

Fair: It seems to be getting harder and harder for me to kill a mature suburban buck. Either a lot more people are starting to hunt, maybe with the use of crossbows, or they are being shot illegally.

Coffee Co. E-2, G-1, F-2

Excellent: Two bucks and two does.

Good: My family killed a few good bucks, saw several does and smaller bucks.

Fair: Didn’t kill anything but saw a lot of deer.

Fair: Saw plenty of deer but no shooter bucks in person or on camera.

Colquitt Co. E-4, G-4, F-2, P-5

Excellent: I saw more deer on my private property than ever before. The last three years there had been more trophy bucks and great up and coming bucks than I’ve had in previous years. I harvested one good buck and two does. I am satisfied with the way deer hunting is going for my area in southwestern Colquitt County. Thanks GON for the opportunity to vocalize! You guys are the best!

Excellent: I harvested two mature bucks, including a typical 12 that should gross around 160.

Excellent: Filled both buck tags early.

Excellent: Have put forth a very good management program to accomplish the desired goals of herd numbers, top quality food plots year-round and supplemental protein feeding program and monitoring through use of multiple cell cameras. By doing this, it allows us to become very knowledgeable long term of the herd and allows to harvest 4 1/2-year-old bucks and to up trophy-quality animals. It’s also nice to be able to hunt and observe animals on almost every hunt. All this hard work led to seeing numerous trophies this year and tagging out on two very high-quality bucks over 155 inches.

Good: Saw lots of deer.

Good:  Didn’t see as many deer as last season, but I believe it was due to not preparing as much (filling feeders, moving stands, food plots, etc). But I still filled freezer and shot a nice older buck.

Good: Good weather.

Fair: Mid to late season had a decrease of activity on plots.

Fair: Never saw a big buck in daylight. Had them on camera all season.

Poor: Worst deer season in 35 years. Trespassing, hunting the extreme edge of property.

Poor: Dry season early. Rut here was spotty in late November and continued through mid to late December.

Poor: I just didn’t have near as many deer on camera this year. I’ve had basically the same deer on camera all season. The neighbors said the same. Two small bucks and thee does, that’s it. I don’t know what’s going on. Usually, I have lots of deer to choose from.

Columbia Co. G-3, F-1

Good: Plenty of deer.

Good: Saw deer. Harvested three and could’ve taken more.

Good: I got a nice 8-point buck and three average-sized does. Early in the season, I saw more does and young bucks than in past years. Coyotes and bobcats were almost non-existent this year! I had one picture of a coyote during the last week of October!

Fair: Late and sporadic rut. Seeing more coyotes and wild pigs disrupting deer activity.

Cook Co. G-2, P-1

Good: Season started off slow with warm temperatures and drought conditions. Mid-season rain and cold fronts seemed to have the deer moving again. Had plenty of opportunities to harvest deer but still waiting on a mature buck.

Good: My son tagged out on bucks. I had plenty of opportunities on smaller bucks. Freezers full.

Poor: Small deer and mostly nocturnal.

Coweta Co. E-5, G-14, F-6, P-4

Excellent: I have seen deer each day I hunted and harvested many.

Excellent: Killed both my target bucks.

Excellent: Deer are very highly populated in the Coweta County area where I hunt.

Good: Saw a lot of potential young bucks.

Good: Fifteen deer killed on 600 acres, which had both pine and hardwoods harvested this past summer

Good: Fewer does sighted. Plenty of bucks, nothing of age or size.

Good: Saw lots of deer and killed a 6 1/2-year-old 9-point.

Good: Harvested three deer.

Good: I had a good time, saw a fair amount of deer and enjoyed my time outdoors.

Good: Saw lots of deer. Passed on several younger bucks. Got a nice Pope & Young in October.

Good: Saw a lot of deer, had lot of activity on camera all season.

Good: Saw lots of deer and killed some good ones with plenty of promising young bucks. Starting new feeding program, excited to see results.

Good: Finally saw some deer, including a couple of bucks!

Good: Fortunately, I hunt a very large private-owned tract. Plenty of deer, plenty of big deer. Hunting pressure and neighbors who shoot deer that roam is our only problem.

Good: I always want two deer during the season for meat. I don’t really care about horns anymore. I did get the two deer I wanted but saw very little activity this year. About a week after bow season started, the deer went nocturnal. All pics were like 9 p.m. to 3 a.m. Even during the rut, I got two daytime pics. Not much hunting pressure where I hunt, but there is a lot of construction in the area. I was able to pop a coyote this year while in the stand.

Fair: Low numbers of deer in my hunting area.

Fair: Too many people hunting.

Fair: I wasn’t able to hunt as much as last year and missed the first weeks of the season due to a trip overseas.

Fair: Didn’t see the deer I usually do.

Fair: Before the rut was decent, after the rut the deer seem to be non-existent. So fair instead of good.

Fair: Saw many does and small bucks

Poor: The deer left the area that I hunt in early November. I’ve hunted there for 30-plus years and have never seen that happen.

Poor: Not many deer seen, rut was very sporadic, only saw one spike chasing a doe. I blame it on a mast acorn crop!

Poor: Our lease was sold to a new timber company. They came in last year on the opening day of turkey season and began clearcutting the entire lease. This was after being told it was going to be select cut. Just before the deer opener, they sprayed all the new growth with herbicide. I knew it was coming but not at the beginning of the season. They then moved in and began burning after we had placed stands and blinds out to hunt. I understand the forestry practice, but this is no way to treat a lessee who has been dedicated to managing and protecting the property for years. Needless to say, most deer moved out when the land was turned into a nuclear waste zone. Deer have just started coming into feeders as there is absolutely nothing to eat. None of the big boys have returned. The last five hunts produced zero deer sightings. This stinks because I’m trying to get my wife on a buck. I sure miss the former landowners. There were two. Their priorities come first but a little communication and a little bit of grace toward the hunters would have been nice.

Poor: I tagged out early this season. I saw plenty of bucks and does and killed my biggest deer ever this year. It was my first year to hunt since retiring, and I could go on the best days instead of looking at them on my cameras while I was at work in previous years.

Crawford Co. E-2, G-9, F-4, P-1

Good: Had several dogs from local houses running deer on my hunting club. The dogs spooked and pushed the deer.

Good: Rated season good due to lack of opportunity on my part to get in my ground blind because my 73 doctor appointments seem to interfere way too often. Also missed the week between Christmas and New Years  camping at state park with friends. Love GON and my Little Shoals Hunting Club family.

Good: I was able to get a lease on a small piece of property so my grandkids could hunt with me.

Good: Saw plenty of deer every hunt.

Good: Almost no acorns. Most deer seen are around feeders and food plots.

Good: Saw good healthy deer. Did not shoot any this year, trying to get a large buck. Had several opportunities to get a good deer, just did not pull the trigger on it.

Good: Saw deer most sits. Way more does than bucks. Killed a mature buck.

Fair: Saw plenty of deer. Managed to take a buck early in the rut but predators (coyotes, bobcats, pigs) began to run deer away from hunting areas later in the season.

Fair: Seemed like less bucks this year.

Fair: We hunt two QDM clubs, and this was a down year for us in terms of mature bucks. Lots of younger bucks, but at the primary QDM club we hunt, we had only one no-question shooter buck. This is probably just a down year and will rebound in the next year or two.

Poor: Did not see many deer. Much less than usual.

Crisp Co. G-3, F-2, P-1

Good: Saw plenty of deer and killed a quality buck and saw a good number of healthy young bucks.

Good: Saw lots of does. Saw a lot of young bucks but no shooters.

Good: Continuous good hunting throughout the year. Our team was able to harvest two mature bucks in the 140s off our farm.

Fair: Deer movement seemed to be off this year. Rut activity was spotty compared to years past, at least in our area. Good bucks were still harvested but the number of bucks seen chasing was down this year for the area.

Poor: We saw very little deer movement and almost non-existent rut action.

Dade Co. E-1, G-1, F-3

Excellent: Plenty of deer, including a number of very nice bucks for this area. Lots of opportunities.

Good: Saw a lot of deer.

Fair: Not seeing mature bucks. I think we need better quality standards, and we need to decrease doe days. Not seeing as many mature does like I used to when we had less doe days.

Fair: Had a lot of hunting pressure around my area. A new WMA opened on the side of Lookout Mountain and more people shooting.

Fair: Lack of mature bucks.

Dawson Co. G-4, F-4

Good: Need a few more does days.

Good: Due to my fault, I missed a chance at a nice buck.

Good: I got one and my 10-year-old son got one. Time in the woods was limited due to work, so I’d say we did well.

Good: Saw a lot of deer, just not a lot of mature bucks. I think we need people to kill more does. We have had trophy management for seven years, no one will kill does.

Fair: Didn’t have the anticipated season.

Fair: I saw a large number of deer. Made a few mistakes. I have killed fewer deer this year than any in the past 20 years, but that’s mostly my fault. I wish the doe days in Dawson were earlier instead of later. Don’t want to shoot does around the rut, very few doe days before the rut, and then doe days are soon to open back up for 15 days. Most will be pregnant at this point. I wish I could get my meat out of the way early and focus on killing a good deer when the rut is in swing. Of course there is bow season, but my schedule didn’t allow for many sits this year. Also more focus on my children getting an opportunity had an impact.

Fair: Very little deer movement compared to past seasons.

Fair: Land access is a significant challenge. (And, yes, I hunt public land.)

Decatur Co. E-3, G-2

Excellent: Youngest child killed his first deer. Doe numbers are up. An abundance of young 8-pointers, only one mature buck was harvested.

Excellent: Plenty of deer seen, got to hunt a lot and put some meat in the freezer.

Excellent:  I killed the best buck of my life. I hunt all public land, and it was a great season.

Good: Plenty of deer seen.

DeKalb Co. E-1

Excellent: I always have a great season. As long as the big guy upstairs gives me another season, I’m good. I manage to get a big buck or two almost every year.

Dodge Co. E-6, G-3, F-4, P-1

Excellent: I saw a deer or multiple deer almost every time I hunted. Although I didn’t harvest an animal each time, I still consider a hunt a success when I see something I could have potentially harvested.

Excellent: Saw deer just about every time I went, which was just about every day until Thanksgiving. I tagged out on bucks in November and took my biggest yet.

Excellent: Harvested my targeted buck on opening day. During the rut, I was able to witness mature bucks chasing and fighting right on calendar time. We were slow to get fall rains to boost food plots, but later-in-the-season rains with additional fertilizer made food plots take off, and now that row crops have been harvested, this has provided the deer what they need with additional corn feeding.

Excellent: Saw lots of deer and killed nice bucks.

Excellent: Lots of deer. A couple of nice ones seen and one nice one shot. Who could ask for more?

Good: Saw a lot of deer but hogs are a problem.

Good: Didn’t see the amount of deer we normally see. The hogs moved in and pushed a lot of the deer away.

Fair: Not many deer.

Fair: I think their needs to be antler restrictions on bucks and should have to kill two does to shoot a buck. Like earn a buck tag.

Poor: Nocturnal deer.

Dooly Co. E-6, G-5, F-2

Excellent: Saw plenty of deer! Shot the two bucks I set out to shoot! Daughters both killed deer!

Excellent: Saw lots of deer and saw lots of up-and-coming bucks. Passed on a few really nice bucks that maybe I should have taken. Good weather, but not really a lot of cold mornings which I like. The rut was about on time but very short in my opinion.

Excellent: Consistent deer movement all season long. I killed six does and a 10-point buck for the season and missed a giant the first week of January after shooting a doe the same evening. Acorn crop was light, and that seemed to force deer out of the deep woods in search of food when cold fronts came in. I saw much more young bucks under 3 years old this year than I did does, and hopefully they’ll make it to next season to see what they grow into.

Excellent: Saw a number of great Bucks that have great potential to become a super buck. Killed a mature buck in the 150s that we have been watching for a couple years. Found his sheds last year. He made a big mass increase between the sixth and seventh year of antler development. Great deer that are getting better. We could have a number of 150 plus but we have a neighbor that has a club, and they killed six bucks this year, at least five of them had great potential to really be something. If your goal is to harvest a 150-class-plus buck, you must let the 120 to 130 go to grow.

Excellent: The number of deer seen.

Good: My family has seen plenty of deer, and we also have harvested several nice bucks this season. The weather has been a bit cooler and has helped keep the deer moving.

Good: Overall deer numbers down but seemed to have better quality. Did take my biggest buck to date.

Good: The weather wasn’t the best. Deer sightings were plentiful.

Fair: Deer sightings are way down.

Fair: Deer movement was mostly at night.

Douglas Co. E-3, G-1, P-2

Excellent: Saw many bucks and does. The rut played out just like I hoped. Very good season.

Excellent: Saw plenty of deer and killed two bucks.

Excellent: Deer numbers seemed to be up on our property. We took three nice, 3 1/2-year-old deer. I maybe hunted eight to 10 sits and saw deer every time.

Good: Saw lots of deer every time I went out.

Poor: Deer activity went completely nocturnal in early October. Virtually zero activity during the rut. Only yearling does and button bucks daylighting in the late season.

Poor: The opening day of archery season was the only daytime chance I would have had to harvest a deer according to my trail camera sending pictures to my phone! I didn’t go out because my wife was very sick! After that, my deer herd at that location became nocturnal because apparently my neighbor had a feeder and they preferred that over the white oak acorns that they were feeding over my stand area! I have been deer hunting since 1965, and this has been the worst season I have encountered!

Early Co. E-5, G-1, F-2

Excellent: There have been four bucks killed so far this season on our private land where only family is allowed to hunt. We practice game management and have seen more deer over the last two years. We  have seen and taken heavier deer, including the buck entered in the contest.

Excellent: Saw lots of deer and good bucks.

Excellent: Saw more mature bucks this season than we have ever seen.

Excellent: I have seen more deer on my property this year than last year.

Excellent: Lots of good days with a few great days thrown in.

Good: Good deer herd.

Fair: Too many Florida hunters shooting young bucks.

Effingham Co. E-1, G-1, F-2, P-2

Excellent: Harvested an 8-point and a 7-point, observed a good number of younger bucks and does. Saw deer almost every time I went hunting.

Good: Saw lots of deer. Here in the southern part of the state, there were no acorns this year and any supplemental feed you put out was immediately eaten. Food plots were also ravaged.

Fair: Was not seeing the deer numbers that I normally see. Very low to no acorn crop, as well.

Fair: I did not have the buck luck like I typically have had in the past.

Poor: Lower Effingham County misses the first rut. It begins the second week of October.

Poor: A lot less deer seen this year than last. Most of the movement we did see was at night.

Elbert Co. E-3, G-1, F-7, P-1

Excellent: Plenty of acorns early made for good hunting during bow season, and I was fortunate enough to harvest my first buck with a bow.

Excellent: Saw plenty of deer. I killed one buck and two does. Grandson killed one doe and two bucks, including a good 9-point.

Excellent: Harvested the biggest deer I ever had during bow season. It weighed 246 and had a rack to go with it.

Fair: Rut has been very messed up. Seeing scrapes one minute and dried up the next day. Very little visible rut activity.

Fair: Lots of does but not many mature bucks.

Fair: Not enough rain to get food plots established, so of course the deer were somewhere else.

Fair: No decent bucks seen on property. Few does and small bucks.

Fair: Lower sightings than previous years.

Emanuel Co. E-2, G-1, F-5, P-1

Excellent: No problem seeing deer. Overpopulation in the lower part of the county.

Excellent: Plenty of deer, not much pressure where I hunt.

Good: Considering that we had zero acorns this season—I think because of the storm—we still had a decent season! The club usually takes about 30 to 35 deer, 90% bucks. This year we have taken 28. Some high water effected some of our stands that were difficult to hunt. But all in all it has been a good season. Lot’s of good food and friendships!

Fair: Saw some decent bucks but still too many does. Worst thing is out-of-state hunters won’t let bucks reach maturity.

Fair: I’m very green when it comes to experience hunting, so I’m making mistakes when pursuing mature bucks. I am learning a lot, but I started hunting a lot later than most people. I am 41 and have only been really avidly hunting a couple of years now.

Fair: Bigger bucks a no show.

Fair: I had not seen the deer I thought I would

Poor: Nothing big enough to shoot. Didn’t see deer like years past.

Evans Co. E-1, G-1, F-1

Excellent: Killed a nice 8-point on my on property on Oct. 23.

Fair: Didn’t see quite as many deer as last year. Even on camera the deer went nocturnal from mid November to mid December, a little more than last year I think. Rut was pretty consistent with the rut map dates, around Nov. 1 like usual. Didn’t see a lot of rut activity. Seemed like it was a little warm and a lot was happening at night probably.

Fannin Co. E-2, G-5, P-1

Excellent: Good year for acorns and plenty of deer activity in October and November.

Excellent: Wife got a 9-pointer opening morning of bow season and I got and 8-pointer the second Saturday of bow season.

Good: Would have rated excellent but does are pets to some.

Good: Saw an increase in deer this year and an increase in antler size, also.

Good: Didn’t see as many legal deer as I usually do on public land.

Good: Killed my third-largest buck!

Good: I actually killed my two-buck limit.

Poor: Saw lots and lots of does. Did not see any quality bucks on both WMA and private land. I consider quality to be greater than 4 points. I passed on three scrawny 4-pointers.

Fayette Co. G-3, F-1

Good: Bagged plenty of meat for myself and another couple. Plus, a good 8-pointer for Fayette County. I especially enjoyed being able to “climb a tree to see Him!”

Good: I had an out-of-state hunt in November and was gone 10 days. This was prime rut so I missed that opportunity at home. If I was here during that time, I would have probably rated my season as excellent.

Fair: Beautiful weather. Saw lots of God’s creatures. Just a wonderful thing.

Floyd Co. E-1, G-9, F-1, P-2

Excellent: Lots of acorns. Good weather. Bucks chasing since October and still seeing lots of deer.

Good: Saw deer on most of my hunting trips. I still strongly believe that the first two weeks of the rifle season in north Georgia should be buck only. North Georgia has fewer deer than south Georgia, and by killing off the does, you only decrease the annual herd.

Good: I was able to harvest two nice 8-points. Some nice bucks are still active on my property and showing up on my cameras.

Good: Got two bucks, freezer is full. Saw chasing, breeding, couple of real trophies. Would have rated my season as excellent but my best hunting buddy of 40 years was unable to hunt.

Good: Saw good numbers of deer.

Good: Got an 8-point and saw the biggest one I have ever seen just out of bow range.

Good: Didn’t see as many deer as the past few seasons but still saw plenty. We were able to fill our freezer and kill a quality buck.

Good: Saw lots of deer, just nothing with enough antlers. I would like to see Floyd County made a QDM county.

Fair: Not much is done around our county to help out with any animal in our area that I see. But yet I have to buy I license to see nothing.

Poor: Didn’t get to hunt this year. Recovering from a leg amputation.

Forsyth Co. E-1, G-3, F-1

Excellent: Several mature bucks on the property I hunt. Two hunters, three bucks all between 110 and 120 inches taken.

Good: Saw many quality bucks.

Good: Killed two bucks but didn’t see a whole lot of deer!

Fair: Not a very cold season! Not as much movement as in past years.

Franklin Co. E-4, G-5, F-1, P-3

Excellent: Lots of deer seen and a couple of mature bucks I let go in hopes they make it to next season.

Excellent: Did not get to take one, but I love to watch them and enjoy nature.

Excellent: Saw deer most every hunt.

Good: Deer population seems to be higher than it has in a long time.

Good: Had good weather, had a lot of deer movement, seen some nice deer.

Good: Saw quality, mature bucks for the first time in five or six years.

Good: Saw more deer this season than any other. However, mature buck quality was down overall.

Poor: Low sightings.

Poor: There has been hardly any movement and this season has been so slow!

Fulton Co. E-4, G-7, P-1

Excellent: Most bucks I’ve ever seen on my property this year.

Excellent: Big bucks, good management, trigger control and supplemental feeding­—especially feeding.

Good: I am unique in that I have hunted the same tract since the first deer season here in the late 70s. This year I got a nice 8-pointer and lost an even bigger buck that I tracked. I consider that a good season. I also took a couple does, although I let many go, as well as several 4- to 6-pointers passed up. I noticed a trend that has continued over the past several years. I live in a rural part of south Fulton and have hunted the same property since day one and have seen the unspoiled habitat declining as more folks build homes in this area. As more people activity occurs along the roads, the pattern of deer activity—does and bucks—tends to avoid the public roads in daylight and often parallels roads and shifts away from heavy people activity, such as houses, churches and noisy bicycle riders who often yell at each other as they pass along the roads. The trend I see in buck and doe behavior is to avoid crossing busy roads except in places they can see and hear a long distance, such as hilltops and open areas. In the past few years, I often set up about 100 yards from busy roads and have had better hunting letting the oblivious road people move deer past me without their ever being aware of nearby deer. Another trend is there are less dogs heard running deer in my area because of laws and regulations on dogs. I have observed does watch a group of bikers pass without being alarmed. The deer are still present but know how to avoid people near homes and roads. I take advantage of this trend and see lots of deer, but it isn’t the same as hunting the back country. Somehow it is disturbing to be around bikers, hikers and walking people while hunting. It is amazing what I hear on my deer stand from folks passing along the road often within sight of my stand, and they never know I am there. Change comes whether we like it or not. Also I have grown old and cannot cover vast areas now so my options are limited. I love to hunt WMAs where I can still see undisturbed deer. I still cling to my old local hunting grounds, but all the change is slowly hurting the quality of my hunt. In my area, trophy bucks are seldom seen except at night in the headlights. Somehow it is not the same, and it makes me sad.

Good: Not as many mature deer seen during daylight hours. Warm fall and winter.

Good: I have seen deer the few times I have gone and killed a buck.

Good: Saw a lot of deer this year, just not any big bucks.

Good: No big bucks this year. Plenty of does. Wish the city would create an urban deer population management program like many northern states. I’d be happy to manage and run the program for the city.

Good: Very challenging with bumper mast crop year, hard to get deer patterned.

Good: I was blessed to harvest two mature, old bucks. However, there are a lot of hunters in my county harvesting young deer, which makes it hard to pass the deer I do.

Poor: Too many people shooting everything, wounding and not recovering. Too much pressure with way more hunters than use to be in small areas.

Gilmer Co. E-1, G-4, F-2, P-2

Excellent: A lot of rutting activity. Saw deer about every time I went hunting.

Good: Saw plenty of deer with the opportunity to harvest one most hunts.

Good: I killed a 15-inch 8-point and saw a few deer.

Good: Deer movement.

Good: Lots of deer movement with several decent bucks.

Fair: Hunted Gilmer and Gordon counties. The surplus acorn crop this year made it difficult to pinpoint animals, along with the dry weather.

Fair: Deer movement was erratic.

Poor: Did not see many deer. Even had eight trail cameras out over feed stations and food plots. Too many coyotes up here in the mountains.

Poor: Most deer were seen on camera at night. Only two deer killed on 600 acres is plenty dern bad. Killing a limit of deer is going to be the end of deer hunting. You don’t understand how many game hogs are out there killing everything they can. We don’t need PETA, we are doing their job.

Glascock Co. E-1, G-2, F-1

Excellent: I saw more deer this season than I have in seasons past. There were fewer acorns than in seasons prior due to the March 15 freeze, so food plots and supplemental feeders were heavily used.

Good: Have had a year with less sightings of hogs and seen more deer. Haven’t seen any big bucks, but we have seen them early on cameras.

Good: I saw plenty of deer. Lots of does and young bucks. Due to timber harvesting in the area that started in October, I wasn’t able to hunt as much as I would have liked.

Fair: Very little movement or rut activity.

Glynn Co. G-1

Gordon Co. E-2, G-8, F-8, P-2

Good: Saw lots of deer.

Good: Saw a fair number of deer.

Good: Saw lots of deer this season.

Good: Saw a lot of deer and activity. The deer I did see were healthy.

Good: Because I was able to harvest a good mature buck.

Good: Took two small deer, but the patterns changed dramatically (shocker I know), and the person with property next to our lease was very difficult to get along with.

Fair: Plenty of does, few mature bucks, not intense rut.

Fair: Too many neighbor dogs running deer. Had them come in on me 60% of my sits this season.

Fair: Lack of deer movement. Weather was too warm and wet when I had time to hunt.

Fair: Deer pretty much nocturnal. I have not seen a decent buck all season except on cameras. I believe it’s all the corn. They know where the corn is and just wait until dark to feed. The rut was warm weather and rain. Saw a few small deer chasing. I still love it.

Fair: Have seen more deer this year than last but still not that many during shooting hours.

Fair: Small deer size.

Poor: Weak rut, few deer sightings. 2022 was an excellent year. This year was poor.

Grady Co. E-1, G-2

Excellent: We saw lots of deer, both live and on camera. Lots of mature bucks, lots of impressive young bucks and tons of does. More feed was consumed from our various feeders than in previous years by a wide margin.

Good: Good quantity of deer seen. No large bucks but the quality and number of 2 1/2-year-old bucks was very good. Excited about the coming seasons.

Good: Went early in the season a couple of times and saw deer both times but ended up killing feral hogs on both trips. Then I had rotator cuff surgery, so my season was cut short. I finally improved enough to try again, even though only using one arm. Saw a 6-point that morning chasing does. Came home, took care of feeding livestock, went back to the stand and later that afternoon had a mature 10-point come in and I harvested him.

Greene Co. E-14, G-10, F-7, P-2

Excellent: The rut was as predicted in the times posted by GON maps. Tagged out before Thanksgiving.

Excellent: Activity per hunt was excellent. Harvested a buck.

Excellent: Saw more bucks this year than I have in a long time.

Excellent: Saw several nice bucks.

Excellent: Saw plenty of deer.

Excellent: We had great deer activity. Saw plenty of deer, plenty of pictures of great bucks. Harvested a few as a club, with several surviving to give us thrills for next year!

Excellent: Killed a mature 8-point during the rut, saw deer at every hunt. I only kill one to two deer per year.

Excellent: Lots of deer seen, including numerous bucks. Quality of bucks was not good, but this is not uncommon in this county due to lack of agriculture. Rut activity was high. Exceptional acorn crop this year.

Excellent: My son and I did not hunt that often but harvested one doe and two bucks. My son’s buck was a trophy 8-pointer. All taken on Redlands WMA.

Excellent: Saw a lot of nice deer, harvested a nice buck and my son harvested a really nice buck.

Excellent: Saw deer 90% of time. Harvested 10-point.

Excellent: Seen more good bucks this year than in the last 10 years. However, does where down

Excellent: Saw plenty of deer.

Good: Saw a lot of deer and a lot with potential. Took a nice 8 and son got a nice 12. Herd looks healthy based off fat around kidneys. Looking forward to next year.

Good: I keep track of the number of deer seen while hunting. I saw more deer from the stand in 2023 than the last several years. Lack of acorns on my farm this year made hunting different. Lots of does with yearlings and lots of smaller bucks. Our priority is growing more mature bucks. I did take an 8-point buck late in the season. This was an older buck with a goofy set of antlers.

Good: Killed a 10-point opening day of gun season. Saw a lot of young bucks and does throughout the season.

Good: Warm weather had deer moving in the evening.

Good: Lots of deer, did not get out as much as I would have liked to. I did not harvest a big buck.

Good: Overall good activity and plenty of harvest opportunities. Probably should be taking more does than we are.

Good: Had some good hunts but didn’t get the deer that was targeted.

Fair: Not much time to hunt, but not much action on my feeders and cameras as in previous years.

Fair: Due to family commitments, I missed opening weekend and only went hunting on two trips. I did not get picked for my favorite quota hunt.

Fair: Deer sightings were kind of tough. I saw some here and there but not the same quantity or quality as last season. I found sign everywhere, but I guess they were doing most of their moving and feeding at night. I almost rated the season as good because I killed my biggest with a bow in November but decided that one morning didn’t outweigh the rest of the season.

Poor: I didn’t see any deer.

Poor: Not able to hunt much.

Gwinnett Co. E-2, G-3, F-4, P-2

Excellent: I shot a beautiful 150!

Excellent: Many good quality deer seen.

Good: Good during first rut. When leaves left, so did daytime deer. Got meat, enjoyed being out! Happy.

Good: Saw lots of deer early season. Let several bucks walk.

Good: Shot my target buck.

Fair: We had a good deer population in September and October. They disappeared after the acorns started to fall.

Fair: Lots of deer but excessive night movement this year made sightings more difficult.

Fair: Too many does and immature bucks compared to previous years. We have 65 acres and usually there are two or three mature shooters that hang out. Due to construction nearby, I think they have moved on.

Poor: Not many deer located.

Poor: Too much development. Deer are gone.

Habersham Co. G-2, F-6, P-1

Good: It was a great season with good acorn crop.

Fair: I don’t have a big tract of private to hunt. I have to hunt public land, and there needs to be more done for the deer habitat on national forest.

Fair: Saw a lot of deer early (bow) season. Took a nice 8-point first week of season. When the acorns started falling, all bets were off and deer that I had on camera disappeared, especially the older bucks. It’s hunting and I love chasing these magnificent beasts.

Fair: Didn’t see that many deer this year.

Fair: Too many hogs. All of the deer have moved closer to town where you can’t hunt. Hogs have run all of the deer out of the mountains nearly.

Fair: I saw more deer this year than last as a direct result of my efforts at trapping coyotes. I’ve been trapping them for the last four years, and I’ve had some really good success. When I started trapping, the deer population in my area was really low and I couldn’t remember the last time I saw a fawn. Now four years later, I’m seeing lots more deer, including fawns and good numbers of young bucks but no mature shooter bucks yet. I hunt Habersham, White and Rabun counties. In the past, Rabun County has been a great place for hunting mature bucks on national forest, but this year and last there has pretty much been no deer sign there. Overall it’s been an OK season, just not what I was hoping for.

Poor: Less deer sightings than usual.

Hall Co. E-7, G-6, F-2, P-3

Excellent: Deer population is thick.

Excellent: I killed 8-point on Dec. 21. Hunting was good. I saw more bucks than does. My deer ate less bait this year because acorn crop was unreal. Acorns had been less the last few years, but my acorns this year were big as quarters. I did not kill any does and won’t next year either.

Excellent: Abundant deer. Great opportunity at a mature buck.

Excellent: Seeing a lot of deer and my grandson (14) killed his first deer, a nice 8-pointer that even a seasoned hunter would be proud of.

Excellent: Number of bucks seen and quality of bucks seen.

Good: Had several encounters with deer this year resulting in the harvest of a good buck.

Good: Plenty of encounters but not with the right buck.

Good: Saw lots of deer with many opportunities.

Good: Decent movement but the buck numbers were down.

Fair: Not as many big bucks as last season, fewer daylight sightings.

Poor: I had other unexpected priorities. I also have a neighbor shooting 3.5-year-old deer we are letting walk.

Poor: Went through a divorce and have 100% custody of my three children under the age of 9. My children’s needs were put ahead of all.

Poor: Saw very few deer.

Hancock Co. E-13, G-23, F-7, P-8

Excellent: We have a large number of mature bucks and a healthy doe population on our lease. Approximately 60% of our members harvested a mature buck.

Excellent: Our deer are in better health than they ever have been. We feed them for about six months every year now.

Excellent: Rut signs with chasing and bumping does lasted a lot longer than normal. There was a few mature bucks killed on our place with a few hunters. Went on one sit without seeing a deer. Most hunts saw eight to 30 deer per sit.

Excellent: Shot a nice 8-point buck on opening day of gun season. I turned 80 in 2023, and this was a great way to start deer season at 80.

Excellent: Saw plenty of deer and a lot of shooter bucks.

Excellent: Plenty of healthy does. Several mature bucks on camera. Two mature bucks harvested along with a doe.

Excellent: Saw lots of deer and lots of young bucks.

Excellent: Killed two nice bucks and saw lots of other deer.

Excellent: Consistently observed deer on every hunt.

Excellent: I took one buck and saw several deer. I hunt a small tract of land with two small food plots (less than 1/4 acre each), and I don’t hunt over feeders. As of Dec. 31, I have seen deer in all but three sits.

Excellent: Saw plenty of deer throughout the season.

Excellent: It was one of the best years we’ve had in a long time for numerous quality buck sightings. Both my son and I shot quality bucks and had the opportunity to take others, which we let walk.

Good: Plenty of deer. Bigger bucks not so much.

Good: Lots of deer seen. Quality of bucks not as good as previous years.

Good: The property where I hunt had plenty of white oak acorns and approximately 5 acres of food plots. Our club members saw a record number of deer, and we did harvest one 4 1/2-year-old buck on 275 acres.

Good: Saw more food-plot usage in daylight hours. Deer numbers seem to be holding steady or possibly slightly increased.

Good: It was good, just didn’t get to hunt enough.

Good: Lots of middle-aged bucks daylighting, good rutting activity and healthy looking herds.

Good: Harvested two does for the freezer. Saw deer almost every time I was out early season but the activity dropped drastically late season, which is normal. Didn’t see any shooter bucks this year.

Good: Saw a lot of maturity on rack growth. We only saw two shooter bucks and harvested one. The rut started closer to the end of October compared to +/-Nov. 7 in previous years.

Good: My wife and I both killed decent bucks. We saw a lot of deer and let the most bucks walk we ever have.

Good: I have not killed anything. I have seen decent numbers of deer. Deer numbers in our area have been down for many years now. Our club spent a lot of time thinning hogs.

Good: Had lots of does and plenty of young bucks. Hunt on 600 acres with five others, three of us over 70. We need to thin does but younger guys don’t want to. Older can’t drag anymore.

Good: Lots of deer, plenty of mid-size bucks, no big bucks.

Good: All of us tagged out.

Good: Hot weather during the rut was not desirable.

Good: Saw a lot of deer but not QDM deer.

Good: Saw a lot of game but not a lot of quality bucks. Took a couple of does after Christmas. Several of our club members took nice bucks and a couple of the younger members got their first bucks.

Good: Saw plenty of deer and decent rutting activity.

Good: Deer went nocturnal early, which I attribute to two leases around me that held target practice and ATV races midday during the season.

Good: Saw plenty of deer, just not a buck I wanted to shoot. Still had a fun season.

Good: I was able to hunt only the first two days of muzzleloader week. I put meat in the freezer but didn’t have the opportunity to hunt again.

Good: Didn’t hunt a lot but harvested a doe and saw deer.

Fair: We see lots of deer, but for several years the quality of our bucks have been decreasing. In my opinion, antler restrictions in Hancock has been allowing the inferior bucks to survive and do the majority of the breeding.

Fair: QDM was a good thing to begin with, but I feel it needs to go. Too many older “cull” bucks that need to be shot and cleared out the herd.

Fair: Only one mature buck on camera all season. The 3 year olds we pass up the neighbors keep killing.

Fair: Had a bear lurking around the corn feeder. I believe he or she was running the deer off.

Fair: The deer are not as plentiful as they were. Too many hunters on 300 acres of surrounding land. Some hunters kill more than they need.

Fair: Did not see a lot of deer. However, the wind was out of the east a lot more this year than others I can remember prior. This kept me from effectively hunting my primary food-plot stand.

Poor: I have hunted Hancock County for 50 years, and the quality of bucks is the worst I have ever seen. QDM was a good idea, but it has run its course. Need to change so we can shoot the cull buck. We feed high protein all year.

Poor: I shot the buck that I had on my trail cam. I shot five other does. I donated four of the does to Hunters For The Hungry. I was trying to cull some of the does to lower the population to support the habitat in the area.

Poor: Lack of quality bucks.

Poor: Did not see the amount of deer I usually see in Hancock County. I refuse to hunt over bait. I believe the amount of feeding has changed the deer patterns.

Poor: Low deer population and overhunting in our area of Hancock where the majority of the hunting land is leased by Weyerhaeuser.

Poor: Very few does. Poor fawn reproduction and a lot of coyotes.

Poor: Not many deer or activity in my area.

Haralson Co. E-1, G-5, F-2, P-2

Excellent: Saw a lot of deer and several nice bucks. Everyone who hunted our property harvested at least one quality buck, and my son took his first deer, an 8-pointer.

Good: Myself and two neighbors all killed an 8-point or better.

Good: Saw a lot of deer.

Good: Plenty of deer moving. Does and small bucks moving through the day but big bucks only at night.

Good: Saw several deer and was able to harvest two.

Good: Although I have not harvested a deer this season, the number of deer and quality of deer seen in person and on trail cameras was above average.

Fair: I have not harvested a deer yet this year but have seen several.

Fair: Saw a decent population of deer at beginning of season. Not many deer observed later. This county should not be either-sex the entire season.

Poor: Compared to last season, I have seen significantly fewer mature bucks and even fewer does. The neighboring properties have not been hunted as hard either this year, so I would imagine I would see a higher, less-pressured deer population.

Poor: Surgeries prevented me from hunting this season.

Harris Co. E-6, G-10, F-3

Excellent: Nice 8-pointer and doe. Same for the clubs around me.

Excellent: I saw deer almost every time I hunted. Only harvested a couple but enjoyed watching lots of does and multiple 3-plus-year-old bucks.

Excellent: Saw plenty of deer, our club had a great success rate.

Excellent: 8-pointer and large doe.

Excellent: More deer than ever.

Excellent: I have seen deer all but two hunts this season. Only taken one doe. I have enjoyed watching the deer and spending time in the woods.

Good: I haven’t seen a quality buck this year but happy others in club have. Two members took their personal bests.

Good: Saw a lot of deer but not many quality bucks.

Good: Saw deer on about half of hunts, harvested two. Good number of fawns seen.

Good: Killed a nice buck with my bow. A lot of deer on my property and all look healthy.

Good: Saw a lot of activity during rut, some doe movement during the end of the season.

Good: Just an average season around my place.

Good: Plenty of deer, just not many 4-plus, much less 5-plus-year-old bucks.

Good: There were white-oak acorns everywhere. I got a doe and let some small bucks and yearlings walk. Saw deer almost every time I hunted.

Fair: I’ve been hunting the same property for 20 years, least amount of deer ever seen this year.

Hart Co. E-1, G-2, F-2, P-2

Excellent: Limited out on bucks and saw a lot of deer this season.

Good: I did not hunt as much as I have in the past; however, when I did, I typically saw deer. I harvested one large doe and let several smaller does and young bucks walk. It was just great being in the outdoors and knowing that I could have killed more but was very selective. My hunting partners harvested three nice 8-pointers and several does. All in all it was a good year.

Good: Just too many people not hunting ethically and that’s what kept it from being excellent.

Fair: Wasn’t great but not terrible. Fair instead of good because that is what time allowed.

Poor: Shot buck only to find the deer after being hit by a truck. Meat too damaged and rack broken.

Poor: Fewer bucks (quality and numbers).

Heard Co. E-2, G-7, F-1, P-2

Excellent: Deer movement was better this year. I’ve always hunted Meriwether but hunting Heard and the quality of deer I’ve seen was better and the amount I saw.

Excellent: We had an incredible season and saw a ton of deer.

Good: Saw a good many deer. Killed a few does for the freezer.

Good: Saw several deer. More than last year.

Good: Good numbers of different age class bucks and does. I am a meat hunter. Meat in the freezer.

Fair: Not a lot of 5-plus-year-old deer seen this year.

Poor: Did not see hardly any deer at all. Could only hunt one private area on the entire lease! Not many deer seen on the lease, which is 595 acres. Timber company cut timber in November, as well.

Poor: My participation was more than a normal season for me. On the days that were designated “rut,” I hunted the full day and never left the stand. I saw three deer the entire season during that time frame. The rest of the season was less than the “rut” portion. I saw five deer, all does, for the entire season. I hunted Cohutta and other WMAs and saw 11 deer, all does. I have hunted Heard County for 17 years and this is my last year. It’s no longer worth my time to hunt there. It appears to me if one can’t access private property, then harvest is not expected.

Henry Co. G-5, F-1

Good: The early season was good but no success in the late season.

Good: Saw deer most times I hunted. Got a shot at one mature buck. Had a few other close calls.

Good: Saw more deer this year than last but overall the numbers are still low. Never saw any rut activity but did find several rubs and scrapes. Been hunting the same area for seven years and about three years ago, the coyotes started showing up, and now they are everywhere.

Good: For our family, which is my two oldest boys and I, we have harvested six total deer.

Good: I have seen a lot of deer this year and even in the off season but only got one buck this year.

Fair: I did not get to go as much as I would like to have gone. But the times that I did go I saw a few deer, just not the quality of what it could potentially be. I did take a doe but the quality of the bucks were not there. Needs to be better than the ones I have hanging on the wall.

Houston Co. E-3, G-7, F-2

Excellent: Lot of deer.

Excellent: Lots of deer and appear to be very healthy.

Excellent: Saw lots of deer mornings and evenings. Was able to harvest what I wanted.

Good: I saw a good number of deer and more bucks than does this year.

Good: I saw plenty of deer, and I also saw a fair amount of rut activity. The weather was fairly good, but the weather turned hot just as the primary rut began.

Good: Saw good quality deer.

Good: We saw more medium-aged bucks (not shooters yet) than ever before. There were three to four shooters seen on camera and from the stands but no one could get a good shot off. Rut saw lots of chasing. They’ll be better next year.

Good: Harvested a good buck, saw plenty of deer activity during the season. Several good bucks and does were harvested on our club, as well.

Good: Saw plenty of deer from yearlings to mature bucks.

Good: A lot of deer, just not seeing the quality.

Fair: I saw many deer in past seasons, but this year was a noticeable decline due to an increased wild hog presence.

Fair: I hunt WMAs only, so it’s a challenge but definitely enjoy the hunts. Only harvested one doe on the bonus hunt at Ocmulgee WMA. Just haven’t seen any bucks during my deer hunts. Locations had good activity and sign. A lot of prime areas have been cut so that made deer activity poor with no food sources.

Irwin Co. G-4, F-1

Good: Seeing plenty of deer almost every hunt. Did not see any shooters this season though. Couple 100- to 110-inch young bucks.

Fair: Seemed like a trickle rut this year. You would hear about the rut going on in some places and in others no action at all.

Jackson Co. E-4, G-8, F-5

Excellent: Saw deer every day.

Excellent: Plenty of deer shot. A big buck and two does harvested. Enjoyed nature.

Excellent: I was very fortunate at the age of 68 to get a 100-lb. doe, which was my first deer ever with a muzzleloader. Then I got a 195-lb., 9-point buck in November and a 153-lb., 9-point buck in December with my .308. Both bucks had a 15 2/8-inch outside spread. I enjoyed my hunting experience this season and hope to enjoy many more.

Excellent: Plenty of mature bucks seen and several taken. Great rut with plenty of chasing and rutting action.

Good: Saw deer every time I went and was able to harvest what I needed.

Good: Saw plenty of deer and had plenty of good bucks on camera.

Good: Didn’t harvest any this year but passed on a lot of bigger bucks.

Good: Saw lots of does and some small bucks. Not as many quality bucks as in years past.

Good: Lots of deer seen, shot a young 8 with a nice rack. Have a real nice 12 that is coming by still but is really nocturnal. Deer on camera every day.

Fair: Bucks were not showing up. Does were limited, ones that did show on camera and in person were small.

Fair: Did not see as many deer this season as I normally do. I hunt in a private hunting club, and most of the members of the club noticed the same thing.

Fair: Didn’t get to go much but when I did go, I didn’t see anything.

Jasper Co. E-5, G-12, F-4, P-1

Excellent: Saw multiple shooter bucks, was able to harvest two shooter bucks this season. Plenty of does.

Excellent: Went hunting three weekends and shot two good bucks, one real nice 10-pointer and lots of deer.

Excellent: Tagged fantastic buck on Cedar Creek WMA. Tagged out two fantastic Oconee National Forest bucks. Tagged two nice does at Rum Creek WMA in archery. Overall a fantastic season.

Excellent: Hunted 10 to 12 times during season. Saw antlered deer every time in the stand. Took a 9-pointer.

Good: Saw a lot of deer.

Good: Freezer full.

Good: Two nice bucks.

Good: Hunting was real good at beginning of the season up until about Thanksgiving and then the deer seem to have disappeared. I’m sure their patterns have changed. Even the clubs around us have noticed the scarcity of deer up until now, but they do seem to be coming back according to cameras.

Good: Saw animals but they appeared on the smaller side than last year.

Good: Better start than average.

Good: Saw more deer. Drought was bad for fall food plots but they recovered with the rain in November. Wasn’t able to hunt as much due to family issues or it may have been better.

Good: Saw good numbers of deer, especially earlier in the season. Had opportunities to take mature bucks and does.

Good: Got two 8-pointers.

Good: Good hunting early in the season, but it became much more difficult with the abundant acorn crop this year. They are just starting to hit food plots and feeders again but nowhere near the activity we experienced earlier in the year.

Good: It was a decent season. The warm weather coming back in seemed to have put a lull on the rut.

Fair: Not seeing the number of deer per hunt I think I should.

Fair: Saw deer, just no shooters.

Fair: Deer sightings on our 1,900-acre lease was down, at least for me. I have been hunting this property for more than 40 years, and this has been the case for the past several years.

Fair: No rut activity was hardly seen by other hunters, trail cams or myself. Places where scrapes are usually found were small to non-existent and few over the whole property. We lease 715 acres bordering Oconee National Forest, which is thousands of acres. From trail cams, I could tell the last two seasons we had a lot of bucks born. Whether that affected this season’s hunt (less does in the herd) I don’t know.

Poor: Not many deer. Season is too long.

Jeff Davis Co. G-1

Good: Plenty of doe and small buck sightings and a few good bucks on camera. With small acorns not producing this year, we had to hunt hard until bigger acorns started. Overall really good season.

Jefferson Co. E-4, G-10, F-3, P-2

Excellent: Lots of good deer. We hunt 1,000 acres that we practice QDM.

Excellent: Saw deer just about every time I went out. Shot one doe with the compound bow, one doe with the blackpowder and shot a nice 8-pointer during gun season. All the deer I’ve seen look good and healthy.

Excellent: I did not shoot a buck, just two does BUT I chased a great buck this season. We spent time trying to pattern him and saw him several times but never close enough for the shot. We had several other target bucks, as well. We believe The Captain was shot by a neighboring club opening weekend and one of the others had his rack all busted up. So he gets a pass until next year. A great time was had and many memories made. What a great season.

Good: Lots of bucks, including some smaller “shooter” bucks. Held off for the big one and got skunked. Should have a good crop of shooter bucks next season!

Good: We have been seeing deer almost every hunt. It tapered off in the last few weeks.

Good: Saw lots of deer. Met my hunting goals.

Good: I saw a lot of deer. Rut was a little slow. I think the reason being is a lot of does.

Good: Saw a lot of deer this season but did not see many shooter bucks at all. Had a lot of fun hunts watching young bucks chase.

Good: Saw deer but very little rut activity while hunting (bucks chasing, bucks cruising with nose down, etc.)

Good: Good buck movement.

Fair: We see deer, can’t say every time, but if we do, it’s normally a few does and maybe a young buck. Most people will not let deer mature into good ones.

Fair: Saw a lot of deer but lack quality bucks in my area.

Fair: There were some good trail-cam pics in August and September but deer quickly disappeared. There was no signs of a rut, but we did harvest a few does and an 8-point. Not having any crops planted is not a good thing. Deer can’t eat pine trees, and the acorns were hurt by a late frost. We are going to do several food plots and see if this helps.

Poor: No shooter bucks showed in the day.

Poor: Not seeing many deer.

Jenkins Co. E-1, G-2, F-1, P-1

Excellent: Saw a lot of deer early in the season and our family harvested several good bucks. We didn’t have many acorns and the food sources were scarce by mid-season. By the end of the year, the majority of the deer left our land for food. But this season was better for us than the past several years with regards to bucks and antler size harvested.

Good: Plenty of deer.

Good: Plenty of doe sightings but few bucks; however, plenty on camera.

Fair: Deer movement was decent but nothing spectacular. Rut didn’t show a lot of sign of starting up. It appeared almost over night and was gone just as quick. With that being said, my rating also comes from my lack of going as much as I would have liked to, especially earlier season. However, I’ve been known to get in nearly as many days as I miss, if not more. This season I got about half of that, probably around 30 to 45 days.

Poor: Hunted 15 days and not many deer seen. Possibly due to weather or many surrounding acres have been clearcut and travel patterns have changed.

Johnson Co. E-2, G-7, F-2

Excellent: Got my best deer ever!

Good: Deer numbers seem to have rebounded, but the buck quality hasn’t been great. Several mature deer on camera have been observed but not the quality that we’ve had in the past.

Good: Saw deer and hogs but did not connect with a trophy buck.

Good: My kids had several great opportunities this season, but there has been more slow days than great days.

Good: I saw an adequate amount of deer and shot a good buck for the freezer.

Good: Harvested a good 8-pointer. Would not rate as excellent since I did not see a lot of quality deer this year.

Good: Saw a decent amount of deer through the season.

Fair: Overly hunted and hogs.

Fair: Saw plenty of deer.

Jones Co. E-4, G-9, F-5, P-2

Excellent: Good all around. Saw plenty of deer.

Excellent: I killed a 10-point trophy in Burke County that is at the taxidermist and also a beautiful 8-point in Jones County that will go on an antler mount board. Saw many young 6- and 8-pointers that will be very nice next year.

Excellent: My wife and I both tagged out with two nice bucks each.

Excellent: Saw a bunch.

Good: Saw plenty of deer. My son harvested a nice buck.

Good: Saw plenty of deer.

Good: We didn’t get food plots planted this year, so corn was our main attraction. We also had a good acorn crop but never got a buck on camera that we would shoot. Took one doe, so plenty of does left over for reproduction.

Good: Saw deer about every time out.

Good: I just now got my first deer of the season, a doe. I saw lots of does, some smaller bucks throughout. I was being picky in the beginning of the season waiting for an 8 or better.

Good: Didn’t see many deer on the property I mainly hunt.

Good: Saw an average number of deer in the field and on trail camera.

Good: Deer herd seems strong and healthy this year. Loads of younger bucks this year. Abnormal amount of yearlings were seen. Future seasons look bright.

Fair: Not too many deer.

Fair: Lease we hunt on has a strict 4-point-on-one-side rule! Too many does because everyone is afraid of shooting a spike and being fined and expelled from club! Takes the fun out of hunting! And we don’t have any better bucks as a result of rule! We are next to a WMA under state rules!

Fair: Did not see a lot of buck activity and large does in the second half of season.

Fair: Does everywhere, no bucks, logging since season started.

Fair: Wasn’t seeing as many nice bucks as previous years.

Poor: Not seeing a lot of deer.

Poor: I did not see but one quality buck from the stand this year. He was a 10-point with a 16-inch spread, and I let him walk. I have 100 acres near Cedar Creek WMA. I believe that a pack of five “pet dogs” who roamed my farm adversely affected daylight deer movement. Personally, I like having the first two weeks of rifle season as buck only. They should look at restoring that.

Lamar Co. E-4, G-5, F-1, P-1

Excellent: Every time I hunted I saw deer.

Excellent: I was able to harvest two bucks and three does and saw plenty of other deer. I saw deer on most of my sits in the stand.

Excellent: Harvested two mature bucks by Nov. 18 and saw plenty of deer.

Excellent: Rarely hunted without seeing deer. Several evenings watched 12 deer for hours. Killed nice 8-point and two does. All I can use.

Good: I would like to see more deer over five years of age.

Fair: Deer were mostly nocturnal and we have too many coyotes.

Poor: It seems that all the properties around me had extra hunters. I hunt open farmland and it is hard to hunt, especially if there is more pressure from everywhere. Some days it sounded like a war zone all around me. I am sure someone had a great season. Just the big deer never had a chance to get to me.

Lanier Co. G-1

Laurens Co. E-2, G-12, F-5

Excellent: Saw plenty of deer, shot a really nice 8-point during the rut.

Excellent: Saw deer of all ages.

Good: Plentiful does with a few bucks on my hunting property.

Good: Lots of opportunities, saw deer mostly in the afternoons.

Good: Saw a lot of younger bucks and several nice bucks, which will be mature for next year. Was able to harvest a mature 9-point with several stickers and a couple of does.

Good: Missed an 8-point at 63 yards in the late evening on Oct. 28 on a food plot due to the rifle sight being bumped. Took it to the range the following day and recorrected. Made up for the miss the following weekend on Nov. 4 by downing another buck, a 6-pointer. The weekend after that, I took a doe. So to me, two out of three ain’t bad.

Good: I saw a lot of does but choose not to shoot them, was waiting on the big buck but so far have not gotten him. I think the hunting club next to mine got the big buck I had on camera.

Good: We saw lots of deer, more bucks than does. We killed three bucks over 200 pounds.

Fair: I was able to harvest a doe. However, I saw fewer deer in as many hunts as last year. There have been several major habitat changes in my area, as this could be a contributing factor.

Fair: Not seeing a lot of does, just a bunch of very small bucks.

Fair: Deer activity was minimal. Not sure if it was the warmer temps or the oaks having no acorns.

Fair: I have a lot of deer activity, but 95% has been at night the entire season. The rut was very weak and sporadic. Very few daylight sightings.

Lee Co. E-1, G-2, F-2

Fair: Saw deer on one hunt (nine of them) but weather was not conducive to many hunting days.

Liberty Co. P-1

Poor: I have a timber farm and lease adjoining properties totaling 500 acres. My neighbor leased out his field and hunting rights. I had nine different shooter bucks in velvet on camera. Farmer got a depredation permit and all nine bucks vanished. I have been managing my property for seven years and only took three bucks (all 130 class) in the last three years. Nothing this year as they are gone.

Lincoln Co. E-4, G-4, F-2, P-1

Excellent: Buck activity very good.

Excellent: My dad, my son and myself all shot nice bucks this season! It was the first time in several years that we were able to do this.

Excellent: Son and I harvested personal bests on the same evening hunt. Close friend took nice 8-point two weeks prior. Seeing benefits of leased land around us not occupied by brown it’s down.

Good: Saw deer every hunt.

Good: I harvested three deer, two bucks and a doe, and I did not see any hogs.

Good: Saw plenty of deer and quality.

Good: Second year on new property and saw more and bigger bucks than previous year. Change to more and earlier doe days in Lincoln County was great.

Fair: Hunted one day and saw does. Did not shoot anything but enjoyed time in the woods.

Long Co. E-1, G-1, F-1

Fair: The main rut in our part of the state is over by the time gun season starts. As an elderly hunter, I don’t bowhunt anymore, so I miss the main rut in southeast Georgia.

Lowndes Co. G-3, F-1

Good: Was able to harvest what I could use.

Good: I got a deer but didn’t see many.

Fair: Tagged one buck. Most hunts didn’t see any deer.

Lumpkin Co. G-3, F-4, P-1

Good: Not enough time to hunt. Busy life.

Fair: With the lack of doe days, it’s hard to fill my freezer for my family. Deer meat is our predominant protein for the year, and I was unable to bag more than one deer.

Fair: Buck-to-doe ratio is terrible. Too many does.

Fair: I did get a buck. It was mediocre at best.

Macon Co. E-11, G-3, F-1

Excellent: Food plots and protein program is working well.

Excellent: Successful hunts.

Excellent: I hunt the month of November. During the majority of my hunts, rutting activity was insane!

Excellent: My goal was to help my 13-year-old grandson get his first buck. We did that on Nov. 18!

Excellent: Saw plenty of deer with a good number of nice bucks and harvested two wall-hangers during the rut.

Excellent: Good numbers and quality of deer! Good success as a family!

Excellent: Saw more total deer and more bucks than in past few years.

Excellent: Saw deer every sitting.

Excellent: Saw many deer with each sit. Club harvested several 150-inch bucks. Our doe harvest program hit its target of 70. I was able to take an awesome buck Thanksgiving weekend.

Excellent: Abundant quality deer.

Good: Saw a lot of deer, mostly does and small bucks.

Good: Buck-to-doe ratio is good. See good numbers of deer.

Good: Harvested two bucks and two does. Lots of deer activity and lots of rut action.

Fair: Little rut activity.

Madison Co. E-1, G-5, F-1, P-2

Excellent: I witnessed some of the best rutting activity I have ever seen this year. I also saw more bucks and bigger bucks this year.

Good: Plenty of deer, need a few more mature ones!

Good: Saw plenty of healthy, mature bucks.

Good: Saw a lot of deer, fawns, does and bucks. The biggest bucks were 1- to 3-year-old 7-, 8- and 9-pointers. I hunted a private, 50-acre leased tract by myself. I passed on shooting any of the bucks. Lots of hunting pressure around me.

Good: I saw lots of deer. I took a deer for the freezer. I passed on several younger bucks.

Fair: Never got cold enough during weekends.

Poor: Local hunters hunt in the wrong conditions and shoot everything that walks by. I understand that some people hunt for meat, and I am perfectly okay with that. It just seems that they hunt very unethically. If a person has to shoot a deer with a rifle multiple times every time they hunt, they should be doing something different. It doesn’t give younger deer a chance to mature. I also take great pride in trying to promote and maintain a better-than-average environment with natural food sources rather than baiting with corn. I feel that allowing hunting over bait was a mistake by Georgia. I specifically hunt in other states that don’t allow baiting since Georgia started allowing it to happen.

Poor: Less bucks each year. No age structure on the bucks due to overhunting by surrounding properties.

Marion Co. E-6, G-7, F-2, P-1

Excellent: Saw lots of deer every time hunting. Didn’t get a big one but saw lots on cameras.

Excellent: I saw a lot of deer and a lot of them bucks.

Excellent: Our club’s management plan of 8-point and outside the ears has paid off. Many bucks seen, with most members scoring at least one good buck.

Excellent: Saw lots of deer.

Excellent: I watched my son tag out with two nice 8-pointers, and he took a doe. I took a nice 8-pointer and two does. We have seen deer every time we were in the woods. We plant food plots and have feeders on our property, also. We saw a lot of smaller bucks so the future is bright! I appreciate the job y’all do at GON.

Excellent: My son and I saw deer every time we were in the woods. My son killed two 8-pointers and a doe. I killed two does and an 8-pointer. We saw a lot of smaller bucks, so the future is bright! Most of the time we were in the stand and saw four to eight deer on morning and evening hunts. Rut activity really heated up around Nov. 11 for us.

Good: I saw plenty of deer this season, but I feel the rut was a little early and very mild.

Good: Saw lots of deer and the rut was better than we have seen in several years.

Good: I’m continuing to see lots of deer, and the antler mass on the deer seems to be improving. Also, the number of small bucks has increased.

Good: We were blessed with two nice bucks.

Fair: I’ve seen plenty of does and small bucks but just didn’t see the big ones this year. Most were running at night. Though some people have had good seasons, this was not a very good one for me.

Fair: Deer movement was primarily at night according to the cell cameras, until later in the season when food became scarce. Hunting not very good. Population seems to be poor overall there.

Poor: This is the worst deer season I’ve had in 20-plus years. I saw eight does and killed one during the entire season. We got in a new lease in Buena Vista that allows 6-pointers to be harvested. No quality management on this lease, so we are looking for a new lease QDM closer to home.

McDuffie Co. E-2, G-4, F-1

Excellent: Myself and my two friends who I let hunt my land were successful. We all got nice bucks, with the biggest being 200 pounds!

Good: Saw a good number of young bucks that are up and comers.

Good: Plenty of mast on the ground, and if the weather was better, it probably would have been better.

Good: I have seen good numbers of deer, took a decent buck earlier in the year. We have seen a couple of bigger bucks on camera but haven’t seen them while hunting. The number and quality of bucks is down a little from previous years, but we also have not done as much supplemental feeding and food plots as we did in prior years.

Good: I saw plenty of deer this season and shot one good buck.

Fair: I wasn’t able to get out and hunt like I have due to my age and physical problems.

McIntosh Co. G-2

Good: Took one good buck with missed opportunities at two more. Decent doe sightings. Not as good as prior years but our club was heavily timbered this year, also. Hogs are worse this year than in years past and seem to be pushing the does out especially.

Good: Had multiple bucks on camera, not too many shooters. Season was good because my son was able to tag a pretty large buck we had on camera.

Meriwether Co. E-13, G-20, F-10

Excellent: Rutting activity seemed to last all of November at our place.

Excellent: Saw more deer this year than ever. We put out attractant and deer feeders. We brought deer in from other properties. This was the best season. Saw more bucks than does. But still ended up with freezer full of meat.

Excellent: We have seen more deer this season than any season before. We hunt 25 acres. I believe our supplemental feeding has helped in a big way. I harvested a nice 9-point on the last evening of muzzleloader season, and the next morning my brother Chris got a nice 8-point from the same stand.

Excellent: Cool temperatures. Early rut action.

Excellent: What made it really, really good is that I harvested a beautiful 11-pointer that was 7 1/2 years old on my farm with a reload that I made up. We’ve had this property for 28 years and have been letting them go to grow. It’s finally paying off. Have had a trapper for the past four years, thinking it really is working, saw deer every day we hunted.

Excellent: We saw a lot of deer, both bucks and does, and the quality of deer was great.

Excellent: I tagged out on mature bucks and also killed a few does. Made great archery shots. My son killed two does and one nice 8-pointer, as well. Good early November cold front and more memories made.

Excellent: With neighbors managing their properties along with us has begun to produce more mature bucks. We have more 4 1/2-year-old (and older) bucks than we’ve ever had.

Excellent: Plenty of deer movement.

Excellent: Many more shooter bucks. Does were doubled up with fawns.

Excellent: Shot five deer, one 8-point that was Pope & Young and one doe with a bow and three does with a gun.

Excellent: I saw a lot of deer and shot a good buck.

Good: I saw lots of deer. Good bucks, just no shooters bigger than my personal best 152 inches I killed in 2015.

Good: I only hunt on my own property, and I didn’t harvest a deer this season. My numbers were pretty good and the amount of shooter bucks were decent. Meriwether requires 4 points 1 inch or longer on every buck that is harvested, and I don’t necessarily agree with that. I had several quality 6-pointers standing in front of me that several of my grandchildren would have loved to harvest. It also removes the ability to cull bucks.

Good: Even though I did not shoot a deer, I saw several deer that most people in Georgia would have shot. Every time I hunted I saw deer and was able to watch deer in their natural environment. I saw deer fighting, I saw deer making scrapes, I saw deer chasing, I saw deer rubbing trees. It was just an enjoyable season.

Good: I saw a decent number of deer during the first two months of rifle season. The numbers started to dwindle down from mid-December until now, and the trail cameras are showing mainly nocturnal activity. For the first time during my 30-plus years of hunting in Georgia, I recall that two different deer coolers, one in Troup County and one in Harris County, were not accepting any deer due to the coolers being full during the week of Thanksgiving.

Good: My daughter killed a mature buck chasing a doe on Nov. 3. We see a good number of bucks this season.

Good: A lot of does and more bucks than in past years. One nice 12-point. Been watching him for two years.

Good: Passed up lots of young bucks but only two does killed.

Good: Saw deer every time I hunted.

Good: Good doe harvest. Lots of young bucks.

Good: Good acorn crop, good buck movement and good ruts.

Good: Very few mature bucks on camera. I did take one of the few I had.

Good: Saw a fair amount of deer and young bucks.

Good: Had a couple of 4-year-old bucks passing through this private, small farm, a mid 30 and low 40s 10-point. The 9 kind of hung around. Took him on the 17th hunt. Only hunted when conditions were perfect. Worked out.

Good: I’ve seen lots of deer.

Good: I harvested two respectable bucks. I’m still learning how to pattern them and do not feel that I have it figured out well enough to produce, keep on property and harvest an excellent buck just yet.

Fair: Too many does still and after 30-plus years of management, the deer herd is producing less good genetic antlers, even with intense management like burning, feed programs, large acreage food plots, trapping and doe harvest. The age of hunters is getting older, and they are not harvesting the right amount of does nor older cull bucks that have reached their potential. In short, trying to harvest 130-plus deer is harder than it was 15 years ago, yet habitat and management is better.

Fair: Disappointing rut.

Fair: No big bucks.

Fair: Didn’t see many bucks this year during daylight.

Fair: Very few deer during daylight hours.

Fair: Low buck sightings during daylight hours. Too many dogs roaming and chasing deer.

Fair: Saw a lot of deer but the quality of bucks was down this year. My county is supposed to be a quality county, but too many young bucks that have potential are shot.

Fair: Deer were off their pattern this year and mostly nocturnal from the very first week of hunting season in our area.

Fair: No big bucks.

Miller Co. E-2, G-1

Excellent: Lots of sightings and numbers all season.

Excellent: Saw a lot of young deer for future seasons and harvested enough for our freezer.

Mitchell Co. E-2, G-3, F-1

Excellent: My first season at 43! Owned 40 acres outside of Pelham for 17 years and finally decided to try and hunt it. I fell in so hard. Two WMA hunts and the highlight was a 6-point off my property! Had so much fun learning.

Excellent: Helped my son harvest two trophy bucks, one being a 10-pointer.

Excellent: Saw a lot of quality deer.

Good: The earlier cool weather helped us start seeing bucks early. I’m eager to see how extended archery will be.

Good: Saw a decent number of deer, just couldn’t get the weather to align when I had time to hunt.

Monroe Co. E-4, G-9, F-2, P-1

Excellent: Lots of deer movement, mature bucks seen and killed, healthy deer herd.

Excellent: Good acorn crop and good buck movement.

Excellent: We trophy hunt/manage and took five mature bucks from our 1,000-acre lease of seven hunters. Gross scores ranged from 128 to 144. The rut was incredible. We had several does getting chased early and on multiple occasions being chased/followed by five to seven bucks trailing.

Excellent: We saw a LOT of deer in 2023. The farmer we lease from asked that we harvest more does, so our club did, with (so far, two weeks left in the season at this point) the tally being three mature bucks, six does and one button buck.

Good: Saw some nice shooters during the rut but couldn’t close the deal.

Good: Saw lots of deer. Just did not get to hunt as much as I would have liked.

Good: Saw a good number of deer.

Good: Plenty of white oak acorns, plenty of deer. Harvested a 12-point.

Good: Harvested two deer during archery season and one deer during rifle season.

Good: Harvested a buck and doe mid season, saw deer early and later in season.

Good: Shot two this year, unlike most years. I’m disabled, so it’s hard for me to go hunt.

Good: Saw plenty of does and decent bucks. Did not see the trophy bucks I was hoping for but maybe next year!

Fair: Up and down.

Fair: Warm weather early season impacted deer activity. Didn’t get an opportunity to shoot any of our target bucks. Not a defined strong rut this year.

Poor: The rut seemed non-existent this year. There’s no quality deer management in my area.

Montgomery Co. E-4, G-1, F-3

Excellent: Lot of nice deer.

Excellent: Good deer sightings, larger body size.

Excellent: Saw plenty of deer; rut was on for several weeks. Killed two trophy bucks and two does.

Excellent: Saw plenty of deer, including several quality bucks that will hopefully be back next year.

Good: Saw plenty of deer throughout season, but mature bucks were hard to come by.

Fair: Didn’t see the number of deer that I have seen in past.

Fair: Didn’t see very many shooters or even borderline bucks. Total deer numbers were down. We did not run feeders like normal. We bought new condos instead.

Morgan Co. E-9, G-9, F-3, P-1

Excellent; Tagged out on my bucks and got a doe.

Excellent: Saw several bucks of all ages.

Excellent: Saw plenty of deer.

Excellent: Saw the most deer I have seen in a long time. The deer herd is definitely bigger than in past years. Took a really nice 10-point chasing a doe. Also removed six does from the herd.

Excellent: Deer activity was good all year. Many good bucks seen.

Excellent: Had good numbers of both bucks and does on my property pretty much for most of the season. Had a good rut with lots of activity. One of my bigger bucks obviously became the dominant buck during the rut, as most of the other bucks I had on camera kind of became mostly nocturnal and scarce. I finally was able to connect and harvest the big deer in mid December.

Good: Numerous quality bucks seen and on camera.

Good: I do not bait. I plant food plots.

Good: Filled the freezer.

Good: Saw plenty of deer. Saw quality bucks.

Good: First season after moving back to Georgia from Virginia. Saw plenty of deer all season long and killed three. High acorn crop and an irregular rut kept it just short of excellent.

Good: Very slow to start, hunt next to Hard Labor Creek State Park. Hogs run deer off from feeder daily, have rooted up creek bank where I hunt. Wish the state could help with trappers! I cannot afford to hire trappers, live on Social Security check.

Fair: Saw deer early in season but moon phases and east winds really put a damper on daytime deer movement on our property.

Fair: Lot of deer seen, fewer mature bucks surviving the cornpiles.

Poor: We had cutting done this year that didn’t finish until late October.

Murray Co. E-1, G-5, F-3

Excellent: We saw lots of deer throughout the entire season.

Good: I had a good hunting season. I have been trying to get a nice bear for several years now. I didn’t even see one this year. I was hoping to get two deer for the freezer, but I only got one. It was a nice 8-pointer. It is the biggest buck I have ever killed. The best part of my hunting season was getting to hunt with my dad. He is 82 years old and can’t get around like he used to. He was there with me a lot more weekends than I expected. The time I get to spend with him in the woods is priceless. That is what I am most grateful for this hunting season.

Good: I’ve only hunted private land (as a landowner). I’ve seen quite a few deer compared to past seasons. Lot of pressure in the area so it’s a fight seeing mature deer that aren’t completely nocturnal. Season was good but not excellent.

Good: Saw plenty of deer.

Good: Saw plenty of deer. Killed a decent 8-point but didn’t see any older bucks.

Good: We only trophy hunt our property. Saw several nice bucks that are still a year or two away from being mature. Lots of does, healthy herd, 15 does taken this year.

Fair: Hunted moderately but not seeing many deer.

Fair: I saw a lot of deer, but I didn’t see a shooter buck.

Muscogee Co. G-1, P-1

Poor: Didn’t get to hunt.

Newton Co. E-6, G-11, F-3, P-1

Excellent: While I did not take a buck, I was being very selective and saw multiple bucks of all different age structures pretty much the entire season. I saw deer I think every time I hunted with multiple deer sightings on most hunts. Evidently the fall of 2022 was a very successful breeding season and this spring was a very successful birthing season because I saw a huge number of fawns. I was able to take two mature does for the freezer.

Excellent: Lots of deer and quality bucks.

Excellent: Lots of deer. Daughter killed two nice bucks. Several does killed.

Excellent: Tagged out on bucks and saw a lot of deer.

Good: Had a lot of activity early in the season and then deer went nocturnal by November.

Good: Shot two healthy does.

Good: Saw deer on most of my hunts. Several decent bucks and one shooter.

Good: I didn’t get to hunt as much as I’d like but saw lots of does (5+ in the stand) and small bucks (three) in Newton County over two days of hunting and harvested one large doe in Newton County. I harvested one decent 3-year-old 8-point buck in Union County.

Good: Six does were killed and numerous bucks were seen.

Good: Good deer numbers. Public-land pressure was not too bad. Good success rate.

Good: Only saw one mature buck. Lot of deer.

Good: Hard to hunt when you don’t bait and everyone around you does. Like hunting with a crossbow, just doesn’t seem fair!

Good: Myself and my two sons have seen mature bucks since early bow season and are still seeing them now well after the rut. Typically we have one to two shooters on our place, but this year we had six bucks over 4 1/2 years old. Lots of bucks with potential seem to be getting a pass as they are showing up in high numbers where in the past these bucks would have been shot on neighboring lands.

Good: I only got one, but I would’ve got more if I had paid attention to the change of doe days to all season.

Fair: Saw mainly young does and bucks.

Poor: Didn’t get a deer and only saw three.

Oconee Co. E-5, G-3, F-2, P-1

Excellent: Saw a lot of deer, several different bucks.

Excellent: The rut was a little earlier than what GON had projected for Oconee County. Tremendous acorn crop this year with supplemental feeding really boosted the deer season.

Excellent: Great deer herd dynamics. Great doe harvest, meeting objectives.

Excellent: Had good deer movement.

Excellent: Even though I haven’t taken a Georgia deer, it was a great year. I saw deer almost every time I went, which was every weekend. Let a very nice 3 1/2-year-old walk, hoping he makes it a couple more years. Saw a few shooters but just could not get good shots on them (deer have luck, too, lol). My grandson took a really good buck Dec. 29 after hunting hard all season and letting several smaller bucks walk or deciding not to shoot because of bad shot opportunities.

Good: I saw lots of activity this year with numerous different bucks all up until mid December. I was able to take two nice 8-pointers this season and fill my freezer.

Good: Shot one decent buck.

Good: Saw tons of deer. Not excellent because our better bucks from early trail-cam pics vanished and the rut was very short.

Fair: A lot of does for the freezer. Poor, no quality bucks to be found. Limited white oak acorn crop this year.

Poor: We saw some great deer on camera but not as many deer seen this year as the past. Hogs were horrible.

Oglethorpe Co. E-9, G-21, F-9, P-2

Excellent: Best season ever. We have too may doe days.

Excellent: Saw many deer and harvested three for the freezer.

Excellent: Saw lots of does and a couple of shooter bucks.

Excellent: The rut activity started early during the last week of October. I saw more deer exhibiting rut behavior the last week of October than I’ve ever seen before. On a single day, Oct. 29, I saw 12 different 8-point bucks from a single stand. Most were 2-year-old bucks, but one was 3-plus year old and had wider than a 15-inch-wide inside spread. I was able to harvest two bucks during this week. One was a 3 1/2-year-old buck with a 15-inch inside spread, and the other was even older. Best week of hunting I’ve had my entire life.

Excellent: We manage extensively for trophy bucks (4 1/2 years old), and we manage the does, as well. We saw deer throughout the season, and we harvested deer throughout the season.

Excellent: Lots of deer movement and a few quality 4-plus-year-old bucks on the tract.

Excellent: Strong rut activity with mature deer moving during daylight hours.

Good: Killed a nice 10-pointer, saw many young bucks and does.

Good: Too many wild hogs coming through the area.

Good: Plenty of opportunity to take deer. I just didn’t see the quality bucks I would like to take.

Good: Plenty of deer seen this year, just no real mature 130-plus bucks seen on camera or from stand. I killed my two bucks with my bow by Dec. 6.

Good: Because I killed a big buck.

Good: I saw plenty of deer but few mature bucks. The large acorn crop kept the deer out of food plots and away from feeders.

Good: I saw really good rut activity and harvested a decent 8-pointer.

Good: I saw a lot of does and small bucks. Didn’t see many mature bucks.

Good: Saw deer.

Good: Saw a lot of deer and several good bucks. Killed two does and nice 8-point buck.

Good: Plenty of deer, even though the right one didn’t come by me.

Good: Saw lots of does and smallish bucks, but the quality of the largest bucks was down.

Good: Saw plenty of deer but no trophy bucks.

Good: Saw plenty of deer, just not a whole lot of quality bucks.

Good: Had fun. Saw lots of deer.

Good: I didn’t see any big bucks. I saw a few small bucks and few does. I think the weather was working against me. Wind was wrong. When you hunt pine forest, there is not a lot of oak trees.

Fair: Small bucks.

Fair: Not many mature bucks this year, people shooting whatever they see on properties around us.

Fair: When the rifle season began, the rut was already happening. Killed more deer this year than last year and stayed in-state to hunt.

Fair: I hunted less this season than I have in 10 years. Life got in the way, but I had less bucks on camera than I’ve had in years.

Fair: Been feeding our deer by supplementation and food plots for five years. We can’t seem to hold the larger bucks for the majority of season.

Fair: Too many “veteran” hunters are still taking small bucks and basically sticking to the philosophy that if it’s brown, it’s down. We have quite a few does in Oglethorpe, so if anyone wants meat, take one of the does and let bucks get some age on them.

Fair: Way to many young bucks, would love to have at least one more buck tag.

Fair: Just not seeing as many deer.

Poor: Very little deer movement in my area after early archery season. Very few mature bucks were seen. Sparse rut activity.

Poor: Fewer numbers.

Paulding Co. E-1, G-3, F-4, P-3

Excellent: Killed three 8-points and one 9-point, two were archery and two were gun on quota hunt and bonus hunt.

Good: Saw a lot of deer activity.

Good: My 7 year-old-son shot his second buck, a nice 7-pointer. Hunting alone I saw several nice bucks but nothing I thought were worth taking this year personally.

Good: Shot my target buck on 9/11. Did not have another shooter buck show up the rest of the season, but we have a strong deer population.

Fair: Didn’t see the numbers of deer as previous seasons. Had deer on camera, just not much daylight action.

Fair: Hunting Paulding Forest WMA. Many turkeys in the woods, deer hunting was pretty good.

Fair: I enjoyed my time in the woods on public land. I got to watch several deer run past or away from me. I even had one deer run up directly behind me, stop about 5 feet away and stand there trying to figure out what I was. I couldn’t get turned around fast enough to get a shot off but watched it race away from me once I moved. It was thrilling and a bit frustrating. I’ve had great experiences this year but no success in actually killing a deer.

Fair: Rut seemed messed up.

Poor: Did not get to hunt as much as I wanted due to the number of deer that are allowed to be killed and number of predators have reduced the number of deer we see in the woods.

Poor: Saw little to no signs of deer, and the only deer I saw were on the road, even then it was less than in the years past.

Poor: Didn’t see much.

Peach Co. E-2, G-4, F-1

Excellent: I saw plenty of deer all season long. Bucks were plentiful. Not as many large bucks compared to last year but I saw plenty of potential coming up for next season.

Good: Saw lots of deer.

Good: Killed seven deer so far.

Good: I only could hunt eight days this season. Deer density where I hunt was down.

Pickens Co. E-2, G-3, F-3, P-2

Excellent: I’ve been deer hunting for 55 years and killed my best 8-point Nov. 15.

Excellent: This was by far my most enjoyable season. For the first time, I witnessed two bucks fighting, and it was extremely loud and violent. Also saw a bobcat during another hunt. I believe the six or seven deer nearby were more afraid of it than me and were standing within 50 feet of me eventually. Because I needed some meat. I put a crossbow bolt through a mature doe. This isn’t whitetail related, but with newly acquired thermal imaging optics, I took out another bobcat around 6:30 one night. There’s another one still around, but I’m going to leave him/her be. Lastly, from my shooting house, I watched a really nice 8-point walk within 15 feet but it got a pass because it appeared young. And in closing. I saw the widest deer I’ve ever seen in person in my life walk toward me from 700 yards to within a 100-yard shot. It wasn’t very tall, but it looked like a longhorn steer with very white antlers. I left it for next year, too, as did my neighbor, who also saw it.

Good: Seeing bigger bucks.

Good: Saw plenty of deer, just couldn’t harvest any because of club rules. There is enough time left to harvest one.

Fair: Too many people shooting young bucks. Plenty of does and little bucks.

Fair: Missed most of the season due to medical reasons, only hunted the last three weeks.

Poor: Just saw a bunch of does. All bucks are nocturnal since legalized baiting.

Poor: Not many deer in area.

Pierce Co. E-1, G-1

Excellent: I saw deer every time out, regardless of the weather conditions or time of year. Passed on several bucks that need another year and harvested two does after Christmas. Lucky to live in a state that appreciates the outdoors!

Good: Just had a good year.

Pike Co. E-3, G-8, F-3

Excellent: Continually saw deer all season long. Main property I hunted had very good rut activity.

Excellent: Lots of deer this year.

Excellent: Two mature buck kills.

Good: Good deer population.

Good: Saw plenty of deer. Harvested some does for meat and herd management.

Good: Lots of deer movement.

Good: Have been seeing a lot of deer.

Good: Saw more bucks than I ever have before.

Good: Plenty of deer, missed out on most rut activity.

Fair: I have been managing deer on small-acre plots for over 20 years. It’s sad when you continuously see your neighbors killing 2 1/2- to 3 1/2-year-old deer you let walk.

Good: Saw plenty of deer.

Fair: Saw an average number of deer this season but not any mature ones. The most mature deer I saw this season was no more than 2.5 years old.

Fair: Never saw a buck big enough to shoot.

Polk Co. E-3, G-5, F-3, P-2

Excellent: Lots of deer, good rut, killed pb.

Good: Plenty of does to harvest. Not many mature bucks. It would be nice to have antler restrictions in Polk County to try and improve the quality of bucks for potential harvest.

Excellent: Saw a lot of deer.

Good: Saw deer 95% of the time. A lot of young bucks.

Good: Good number of mature bucks and does.

Good: Saw a lot of deer and harvested two mature 8-points and some does. I wish more of the state was quality buck restricted. A lot of young bucks were harvested in our area this year that should not have been.

Fair: Not a lot of rut activity in my area.

Fair: Didn’t see many deer.

Fair: Simply too much joy riding in the area and target practice. Not an enjoyable hunting experience. All bucks remained nocturnal and only the little does ventured out due to not knowing any better. No bucks taken at all this year.

Poor: Too many poachers. Too many doe days for the brown-it’s-down folks.

Pulaski Co. E-2, G-1, F-4

Excellent: Saw several mature bucks.

Good: Good number of deer sightings and shot opportunities.

Fair: Not seeing many deer.

Fair: Rated it as fair instead of poor because of the number of deer seen. Way too many does. Quality and number of mature bucks (130 class and up) was really down. Saw a lot of 1 1/2-year-old bucks, so maybe folks will let them walk. It will still be two years before they will be trophy deer.

Fair: No acorns this year. Small bucks.

Fair: Hogs were so bad they ate the feed so quickly that the deer never had a chance to eat. Plus deer movement in the daytime was very slim with only a handful of daytime sightings.

Putnam Co. E-7, G-10, F-9, P-6

Excellent: Lots of deer. Many mature bucks.

Excellent: Got to go hunting.

Excellent: I saw plenty of deer. I killed one when I wanted to.

Excellent: Saw probably 2-dozen, 2- to 4-year-old bucks and non-stop chasing for a couple of weeks in 2023.

Excellent: Saw deer every hunt. Killed one mature buck and passed several smaller bucks. Lease 300 acres with three members. Other two members tagged out on mature bucks.

Excellent: Got three nice deer, including two good bucks and could have killed more.

Good: Saw plenty of deer!

Good: I saw a good number of deer this year. More times than not I saw deer while hunting, but I also put in a lot of work for deer to enjoy my property!

Good: Saw a good number of deer but only a couple of mature bucks.

Good: Didn’t get to go as much as I planned.

Good: This year, I came back and hunted a considerable amount where I used to some years ago. I’m retired so I hunt deer as much as possible. I’ve taken three this year, so I’m good there. I have let quite a few deer walk after the third while trying to get a nice buck. I had the best year in a good while. Thanks GON.

Good: Saw lots of deer, just not many mature bucks.

Good: Any season is good. Mostly hunt food plots. They were very poor but saw deer every time except one. Saw the third biggest deer I’ve ever seen. Have no idea why I didn’t shoot him. Small does.

Good: Was not able to hunt but four times this year but saw deer on three of four hunts. Deer looked in pretty good shape, but one buck looked kind of rough, only had a rack on one side like he had been fighting.

Fair: Rut wasn’t in and rained the November hunt at Cedar Creek WMA.

Fair: Lost a lot of land.

Fair: This year seemed to be very few bucks on my property, and I’m not a fan of shooting does, although I had plenty.

Fair: Saw noticeably fewer deer than usual.

Fair: Deer activity and population appeared to be slightly off pace from last year. Not terrible, just an off year.

Fair: Lots of small deer.

Fair: I hunt all public land. While it’s a good thing, public land is getting more and more popular to hunt. When everyone and their cousin is out on public lands every day of the week, it can get frustrating. With that said, I was able to harvest two does this season.

Fair: Did not see many deer like years past. The quality of bucks have gone down through the years. I believe Georgia should adopt buck-harvest regulations like Texas has.

Poor: Too many hunters, need more access.

Poor: Ten days of hunting and only saw a few does. I think the reason is pressure and loosing access to private land.

Poor: Saw no bucks.

Poor: Never saw a deer.

Poor: Shoulder surgeries kept me from hunting.

Quitman Co. E-1, G-2, P-1

Good: Couple of nice bucks taken. Too many hogs.

Good: Saw a lot of deer. Could have shot a deer every sit. Wound up missing two nice bucks but only ones I wanted to take.

Poor: Deer seemed very pressured, even though there are only six members in my club on 1,000 acres of land. Most members hunt two weekends a month. Very odd this year and last compared to previous years.

Rabun Co. E-1, G-2, F-1, P-1

Good: I took a deer in muzzleloader and archery season on my 2 acres. I would like to take more, but there aren’t many bucks and doe season is exceptionally limited during general gun.

Good: Saw more deer this year compared to other years.

Poor: Lack of early successional habitat.

Randolph Co. E-7, G-6, F-2, P-3

Excellent: A bad day in the woods beats a good day at work!

Excellent: I harvested two bucks and a number of does.

Excellent: Number of deer seen.

Excellent: As I always say, there’s no such thing as a bad season when the Good Lord allows you to see and hear His Creation come to life, but it certainly tested me when I shot at a nice buck and missed. I thought I might of pulled the shot. I went hunting again five days later and shot and missed another nice buck. I decided I needed to go to the range and check my rifle and sure enough it was 7 inches low at a 100 yards. I got it sighted in. On Dec. 30, I shot the wide 5 we had been after and on Jan. 1, I shot the 9-point I had missed on the second shot. I have been hunting for 63 years, and this is certainly one of my best seasons ever. God blessed me every time. I’ve been a GON member since 1990. Please keep that magazine coming. I love it.

Excellent: We had plenty of really good bucks on our property and a plethora of does. My son was able to get his first two bucks this season, and I had a buddy kill a 242-lb. 6 point. He was an old bruiser.

Excellent: Saw deer almost every hunt. Was able to harvest a nice 9-point and two does.

Excellent: Saw tons of deer and herd balance seems pretty close to good with a tight rut and lots of broken antlers.

Good: Seeing plenty of 3- and 4-year-old bucks that we pass on.

Good: Supplemental protein feeding all year is starting to pay off with better quality deer and improved birth rates for fawns.

Good: The deer season for 2023-2024 was good. We saw a lot of deer and harvested several. The reason I didn’t rate this season as excellent was because the deer for the most part were small.

Good: Saw several deer, including good potential bucks.

Fair: I haven’t killed a buck yet, only seen one mature buck all season. Will have to harvest a couple of does this weekend or next weekend in order to have some meat in the freezer.

Fair: A lot of shooting in the woods. I think Georgia needs to cut down on doe tags A lot of small bucks and does.

Poor: Every deer I’ve let walk has been shot for the past several seasons. Does are out of control, overpopulated! We need a lottery or something differently with buck harvest in the state! There are big deer that slip through year after year making hunters realize there are some good ones here! They just need age! It would suit me just fine if they limit gun season if you want to see some big deer! Let Georgia have a two-week-only rifle season for bucks and I guarantee there will be B&C everywhere after a few years.

Poor: Predicted rut didn’t appear to be on time, warmer weather than usual. Feel like deer season should be extended like Alabama.

Poor: Did not see the number of deer that I usually see, and I think it is due to the increase number of hogs around our land.

Richmond Co. E-1, G-1

Excellent: Plenty of deer in the woods thanks to quality management.

Good: Saw plenty of deer. Just couldn’t get timing correct for bucks deemed shooters.

Rockdale Co. E-2, G-1

Excellent: Saw activity every sit, harvested nice buck. Same for my son.

Excellent: Over three weeks during the rut,  I harvested one really nice 8-pointer, a decent 9-pointer and a doe, all with a crossbow.

Good: Lots of deer sightings.

Schley Co. E-3. F-1

Excellent: Plenty of deer sightings. Property improvements are now holding mature bucks.

Excellent: We have five hunters and took six very good 8-pointers.

Fair: Didn’t see as many big bucks as previous years.

Screven Co. E-3, G-6, F-2

Excellent: Saw many more quality bucks this year than ever before!

Excellent: Abundance of game animals.

Excellent: I saw plenty of deer and several nice bucks with my kids on most of our hunts.

Good: Improved quality of bucks.

Good: Typical season, deer sightings.

Good: Poor deer movement during the rut and heavily reduced numbers of deer sightings on available hunting days. Most weekends were rainy for a portion, which reduces the hunting availability of folks with weekday jobs.

Fair: This season has been weird. Mature bucks have been few and far between on a property where they are usually loaded.

Fair: Current harvest dates, specifically buck only, are not needed. Season should last entire month of January.

Seminole Co. F-1

Fair: It is very difficult to grow and harvest mature deer when you have neighbors who kill 3-year-old deer. I wish more hunters would agree to let them grow. It is hard to see deer that you have let walk get shot. Hopefully one day this will change and allow for better hunting seasons.

Spalding Co. G-2, F-3

Good: Saw a lot of deer but mainly young deer. Shot a nice 9-point buck.

Good: Lot of deer but quality bucks were scarce.

Fair: Did not see as many bucks as in previous years. Rutting activities were very slow.

Fair: Very little rutting activity. Early kill off of all potentially good bucks by neighboring hunters. Heavy coyote presence in the area.

Stephens Co. G-2, F-3, P-1

Good: Tagged out before December.

Good: I have seen a decent number of deer, both buck and doe. I have passed on plenty of smaller bucks trying to harvest my target bucks.

Fair: Mostly public. WMA a little crowded.

Fair: Saw a few deer, less than last year. Saw more black bear than deer. Deer numbers in the mountains will continue to decline until the DNR manages bears as predators. There is a distinct correlation between high bear numbers and low deer numbers (especially doe and fawn numbers).

Fair: Drought conditions played havoc on my food plots. Not nearly as many deer were visiting them as previous years.

Poor: Saw very few deer.

Stewart Co. E-3, G-3, F-4

Excellent: Shared a great hunt with my adult son and a first-time hunter, my nephew, and they both scored on bucks. Camp time swapping stories and sharing laughs was just as memorable.

Excellent: I own 320 acres outside of Lumpkin. My neighbors practice game management, which probably consists of approximately 2,000 acres. I personally let nice bucks walk last season. I watched a 10-point on several occasions with different does. I believe it was the 10-point I shot this season. I plant clover and alfalfa, as well as oats, and the herd is healthy and FAT.

Excellent: Many good bucks were seen, with a few nice ones taken.

Good: Plenty of deer. There was some decent buck activity. The burn that I did back in February paid dividends. Bucks seemed to disappear after the first rut, though.

Good: Need more does. Predators hurting fawn survival.

Good: Saw a good many deer, saw some rut activity.

Fair: Didn’t see any quality bucks this year.

Fair: My family usually hunts the pre-rut in our area. This year it was Nov. 7-17. It was warmer than normal and we didn’t see as much chasing and deer movement as we typically do.

Fair: Bucks mainly at dark.

Fair: Saw more hogs then deer.

Sumter Co. E-4, G-9, F-1, P-2

Excellent: Saw lots of deer and pigs, as well as other game.

Excellent: Able to see multiple big bucks. Great rut this year.

Good: Have spent time with my kids outdoors, and they have taken a couple of deer. I have seen some nice bucks but have held off shooting.

Good: Too many mature does are being taken now. Nothing left for people to shoot but young yearlings (40-lb. range). Number of does needs to be reduced from 10 to five.

Good: I’ve seen a lot of deer on most days.

Good: Killed two fairly good bucks.

Good: I just didn’t get to hunt pre or peak hunt dates.

Fair: Filled the freezer but didn’t see the big one in daylight hours. Weather wasn’t as cooperative as in some years.

Poor: Not enough days in the woods.

Poor: We feed deer all summer and had good bucks on cameras. Our property joins the Jimmy Carter Airport property. The FAA has brought in a sniper team from the USDA and have conducted many kill operations at night. This has been going on for six months and continues. We now see no good bucks from stands or on camera. We’ve taken three small does for the freezer. It is very frustrating.

Talbot Co. E-5, G-17, F-6, P-6

Excellent: Great deer, good age.

Excellent: First time I have ever tagged out on bucks. The deer were more active during the daylight this year for some reason, which made it easier to fill my freezer.

Excellent: Lots of buck action.

Excellent: Saw more deer than I have in years.

Good: Saw a good number of deer.

Good: I hunted plenty but missed the early rut due to work obligations.

Good: Saw plenty of deer, didn’t shoot one but saw deer and didn’t see even one coyote on our property.

Good: Saw a fair number of deer, took two bucks. Deer in our club are coming in smaller than the last couple of years. Didn’t experience a normal rut this year. Saw some young bucks pushing does in early November, only saw one buck actually chasing.

Good: Saw a lot of deer, only one mature buck.

Good: Didn’t get to hunt much.

Good: I didn’t go hunting but five times. I saw deer every time and killed a nice buck. The dry weather is the only reason I didn’t put excellent.

Good: Overall deer sightings seemed to be lower than years past but was able to tag a 10-pointer. Would have rated poor if I hadn’t gotten that buck.

Good: We took our top-two target bucks on the property this year (which was great), but we didn’t see the November rut activity we had hoped for.

Good: Bagged a 9-point, saw several shooters.

Good: Saw plenty of deer but timber company decided to make road improvements for several weeks in the middle of the rut.

Good: Early season. Saw lots of activity. Missed much of the rut but still saw deer, including some chasing. No big boys, though.

Good: I saw more deer this year than in previous years.

Fair: Too many hunters in Talbot County. This depletes the buck age structure. You would think people would get tired of shooting 2 1/2-year-old 8-points and saying, “heeda beena goodern nex yar.” The overly long season also lends to the overharvest of bucks. Come on guys, mature a bit.

Fair: Decent numbers, nothing remarkable.

Fair: It was good in the fact that my son killed his first deer and we sent in the pic to GON but fair in the fact that we didn’t see any bigger bucks for the year.

Fair: Seen a lot of deer and a lot of young bucks. A handful of legal bucks were seen but none I would call shooters. There are still way too many 2- and 3-year-olds getting killed.

Fair: I hunted majority WMA or forest service land. One change I would like to see is more antler restrictions for bucks harvested on public lands and possibly adding doe-only hunts. Looking at harvest of deer on public land, there’s a vast majority of bucks being harvested over does. If that trend continues, eventually this could potentially lead to unbalanced population dynamics with doe-to-buck ratios.

Fair: Coyotes are reducing fawn crop. Very few young deer seen on cameras.

Poor: Saw nothing but immature bucks.

Poor: Saw the least amount of deer this year than we’ve ever seen. All deer, even on camera, were at night.

Poor: Number of deer seen on the property. More coyotes than deer.

Poor: Couldn’t tell if we even had a rut. Very little chasing. None of our members heard any grunting, etc.

Poor: Only seeing spikes and very few does.

Taliaferro Co. E-2, G-8, F-3, P-1

Excellent: Lots of deer seen, including several mature shooter bucks but we are very selective in what we take so we let them walk.

Excellent: Plenty of deer sightings and lots of rut action. Managed to harvest a nice 10-point.

Good: Our property was cut two years ago, and it seems with all of the cover now, we are holding more deer, larger bucks.

Good: Saw several nice bucks and a good rut.

Good: Getting to spend time with my grandsons and family and friends hunting.

Good: We have killed nine deer on our 233-acre property. Only one buck and eight does. We did not feed much corn this year. Have 8 acres of food plots that did well this year.

Good: I lost two leases in August and still managed to bag an 8-pointer.

Good: Saw good number of deer.

Good: Saw a lot deer. Lots of acorns.

Fair: Saw deer most hunts but didn’t see many bucks.

Fair: Deer went nocturnal as soon as the season started.

Fair: Didn’t see many bucks.

Poor: My club got clearcut. No woods to hunt.

Tallapoosa Co. G-1

Tattnall Co. E-1, G-5, F-1, P-1

Excellent: Had limited time to hunt this year due to work, but the few times I went I saw deer everywhere.

Good: Saw plenty of game.

Good: Saw a lot of deer.

Good: Saw several does. Harvested two does. Had nice bucks on my cameras but not while I was in the stand.

Good: Saw plenty of deer.

Good: Was not excellent because we do not have a good number of bucks from a good age class. I saw one huge buck during bow season, but it was getting dark and I could not see well enough to shoot. No good shooters beyond that. I did later get a 7-pointer with my revolver. He was not a shooter with my rifle… too small.

Fair: Too many does. Not many quality bucks. Neighboring hunters aren’t quality buck hunters.

Poor: Didn’t hunt but one day.

Taylor Co. E-6, G-8, F-3, P-3

Excellent: I saw several nice, mature bucks through the whole season. We had a very healthy herd of young bucks and does coming up, as well.

Excellent: Saw plenty of deer each hunt.

Excellent: Saw plenty of deer each time on the stand with plenty of good young bucks. We harvested three good bucks from our 233 acres this season.

Excellent: Tagged out on two good bucks by Nov. 10.

Excellent: Killed my target buck and another big buck!

Good: I killed a nice mature buck, but I did not see as many deer as past seasons. Hogs have become a problem where I hunt.

Good: Saw a lot of deer, including several nice 8-point bucks. However, just didn’t see “the” buck.

Good: Seen and let decent deer walk.

Good: Saw plenty of does and bucks. Killed nice 8-pointer with a drop tine

Fair: Plenty of does and young bucks but no big bucks.

Fair: Too much pressure from surrounding properties. If a deer crosses the property line, it gets shot. Too many small bucks killed.

Poor: Poor movement.

Poor: Only saw one small buck the whole season.

Poor: While I have only been able to hunt a handful of times, I have not seen any deer during daylight while hunting. I have had a few daytime pictures on my cameras, but the overwhelming number of pictures are nighttime pictures. This began in mid-October.

Telfair Co. G-2, F-1, P-1

Good: Normal season, plenty of deer, just nothing out of the ordinary.

Fair: Saw fewer bucks. Weather was warm much of the time. The rut seemed to trickle in.

Poor: No good bucks.

Terrell Co. E-3, G-4, F-1, P-1

Excellent: Lots of daytime activity and quality older bucks seen. I’ve hunted ever since 1993 in Terrell County and this is the best year I have ever seen for mature, 5-year-old bucks in daytime patterns.

Excellent: I have not had time to hunt, so far, and was riding through the farm when “Mr. V,” a large buck my children had hunted unsuccessfully Thanksgiving week, ran across the road in front of our truck chasing a doe. Knowing that deer will often stop once they are in the woods, I walked parallel with their path and there he was standing broadside on a knoll looking at me. I took aim and shot him. That’s about it! I plan on hunting for does between now and the end of season.

Excellent: Lot of does and starting to see some decent bucks.

Good: Our management techniques are working well with the herd; however, we feel drought conditions negatively impacted buck mass due to reduced browse quality.

Good: Saw real good deer activity, especially during the rut.

Good: Deer numbers were plentiful but as usual a significant lack of mature bucks.

Fair: Limited mature bucks.

Poor: Did not get to hunt any this year.

Thomas Co. E-1, G-4, F-1

Excellent: Saw more deer and harvested more.

Good: Saw plenty of deer (male/female) and at least two trophy bucks.

Good: Deer population seems to be in good shape based on sightings, reports and dead deer on the highway (seems higher than usual). Sightings have been consistent in my location as with others I speak with. Number of yearling sightings have been good, as well.

Good: I was able to fill a couple of doe tags and killed a decent 10-point buck. I also saw deer nearly every time I went hunting.

Tift Co. E-5, G-1

Excellent: Had some good hunting.

Excellent: I saw nothing but quality bucks and took two 8-pointers. Nice deer.

Excellent: Good year, shot a nice 10-point and a doe. Freezer is full.

Excellent: Good ratio of buck-to-doe sightings. Good numbers of mature bucks around to chase and they were comfortable enough to daylight consistently. Stayed dry so bottoms were huntable. Got to witness three different chases of bucks after a hot doe.

Good: Saw lots of deer. Not the trophy that I wanted but a very decent 8-point. Harvested three does early.

Toombs Co. G-2

Good: Buck-to-doe ratio was acceptable. Weather was good.

Good: Many deer and turkey.

Towns Co. G-2, F-1

Good: Got a good 7-point buck and three does, freezer full.

Fair: Saw many deer but nothing I would consider taking.

Treutlen Co. E-1, G-1, F-2

Excellent: Got a nice buck this year.

Good: Saw deer almost every day I hunted.

Fair: I only saw four deer: two does, one spike buck and one button buck. My partner only saw one doe. We keep feeders going year-round. I think the number of does you can shoot is too many. No one can eat 12 deer a year.

Fair: Saw a lot for the time I hunted.

Troup Co. E-5, G-8, F-1, P-2

Excellent: Planting food plots and a feeding program with mineral licks has really increased the population of deer on my farm in Troup County. I saw at least 10 shooter bucks and lots of young bucks. I killed a nice, 150-inch 10-pointer.

Excellent: Saw more deer than ever.

Excellent: Buck-to-doe ratio seemed good this year. Bucks reacted well to grunting and rattling. Was tagged out with two really nice bucks by Nov. 29.

Excellent: I started about seven years ago on my property doing everything I possibly could to make deer hunting better on this track. No guns, archery only, protein feed, watching my scent and wind. If there was anything I could do to make it better, I did it. And it’s paying off, took two bucks this year that were 51/2 and older. I go by my 4 P’s: Place (land, thick cover, water, food plots for the winter), Protein (feed, summer plots), Pressure (watch your scent and wind so when you do go in the woods, do not let the deer know you are there, make them feel at home) and the most important Patience. You can do all this but does not mean you will get a P&Y or a B&C, but as long as you take mature deer, you’re getting your herd’s full potential.

Good: Saw deer on most hunts. Shot a 9-pointer during rut.

Good: Saw good numbers of deer in all age classes.

Good: Encounters with several mature bucks (5 or 5-plus year olds) while hunting, so in that aspect, the season has been good. Although a killing opportunity didn’t present on several of those mature target bucks, I was successful in having on-stand encounters during hunting hours. Typically, do not rate my season based only on kills but rather encounters with mature/target bucks while on the stand. Successful doe harvest for the freezer and herd management. Didn’t see a lot of aggressive rut activity in terms of chasing, etc. Seemed the temps were generally higher and the prevailing wind directions kept me out of the historically better rut stands. As such, the weather around my area’s primary rut activity was not ideal for heavy daylight movement, thus my rating isn’t “excellent.” It’s the weather’s fault!

Good: We saw plenty of deer this season, quality is still not great, but quantity is getting better. We only harvest what our families will eat and let young bucks walk.

Good: Decent number of deer with a couple of good bucks but overall still not as many as few years ago.

Good: We saw a good many deer and killed enough for our meat for the year.

Fair: Saw plenty of deer. But I did not see any 4- or 5-year-old deer at all.

Poor: Lack of mature bucks. Believe drastic weather changes severely limited their movement in our area.

Poor: Primarily archery hunted West Point WMA. Very few deer moving most mornings.

Turner Co. E-5, G-1, F-1, P-1

Excellent: Good deer population. Several mature bucks.

Excellent: Killed my best buck ever and saw a lot of deer.

Excellent: Saw deer each sit. Target buck harvested along with one doe.

Excellent: Heavy population of deer in my area, both doe and buck, plenty of opportunity to take deer.

Excellent: We had a lot more mature bucks on camera this year and had the opportunity to harvest three as a family. There are also several mature bucks left and a few up-and-comers that could be next year’s studs!

Poor: We saw the least deer movement in years. The rut was almost non-existent. Never saw a mature deer from the stand. Only saw a few on camera.

Twiggs Co. E-3, G-9, F-4, P-3

Excellent: Got my target buck. First buck in over 10 years.

Excellent: I took two real nice bucks and my daughter harvested her first deer/buck. Its rack was broken off, but we think it was one of the 8-points we’ve seen on the property.

Excellent: Took two mature bucks and four does. Saw deer just about every hunt.

Good: Saw plenty of young bucks with good future potential.

Good: Saw deer every time I went hunting. Hogs are a problem.

Good: The November rut seemed to last longer than in previous years. Lots of activity. But in December the bucks seem to have vanished. There has been logging going on next door since then, so not sure if that affected the deer movement. Something certainly has.

Good: I did see plenty of deer this year but did not kill the monster I was after. I still put plenty of meat in the freezer, so it was another very good year.

Good: I saw several deer on a small tract that I own.

Good: My son killed a nice 10-point. We saw a lot of deer early in the season. We still need to take some does. The hogs need to be thinned out.

Good: First year hunting in Georgia.

Fair: Hot and rainy weather.

Fair: Beginning of season was real slow. Rut was late but active.

Fair: I moved to another section of Twiggs County because my section of my former hunt club remained devastated by clear-cutting. The property owner’s forester had failed to burn or spray the sweetgums, tulip poplars and weeds, which quickly replaced pines and hardwoods which had been cut. I tried to wait it out for two seasons but moved to another property because from my tower stands I could not see any game moving through the ruined area. I had food plots, but saw no deer in them while I was hunting. I saw a few deer at my new location, but no shooters. I did not take any does because I had plenty of venison from the previous season.

Fair: Quantity of deer seen was down, partly due to all the timber cutting in the area, although all the deer we did see seemed to be larger-bodied deer than in the past.

Poor: Saw very few deer. Tagged none.

Poor: Cut our property.

Poor: Few deer sightings.

Union Co. E-3, G-4

Excellent: I am actually hunting a neighborhood in an attempt to control the herd. I began this last year, and it has made a huge difference in the number of bucks in size and quality.

Excellent: Passed a lot of young bucks, did take one good buck. Huge acorn crop cut down on deer movement and spread the population out. We do not need the number of either-sex days we had this year. The mountain WMAs have started to improve since they cut out the either-sex days. Hopefully this will continue.

Excellent: Harvested two good bucks on national forest land.

Good: Killed a 6-pointer, son killed a 6-pointer.

Good: We’re starting to see more deer in the woods up in the mountains, some better quality bucks coming out of them in the last few years. Doe to buck population is a bit out of balance. There’s more of them but not enough bucks to breed them all. Should consider a one-buck season for a while up here.

Good: I have mostly hunted on private land in Union and Fannin counties. This is where most deer are at. On public lands, it’s very hard to get up with a good deer. Hopefully the USFS will start cutting more timber for wildlife habitat for deer, turkey and grouse, which is just about gone in the north Georgia mountains.

Good: Deer disappeared once the acorns fell, which made hunting more challenging.

Upson Co. E-5, G-3, F-1

Excellent: I was able to take what I wanted from my property this year, while also finding very mature bucks to hunt next year.

Excellent: Got my target buck and two of my grandsons got their first deer.

Excellent: Saw plenty of deer this season. We harvested several nice deer on my club.

Excellent: Wife successfully harvested a deer during the baby’s nap time when she was sitting on the porch watching a doe get run by a 10-point satellite buck. She fired across the pond at 2 o’clock in the afternoon. I came home from hunting camp to drag it out of the woods where it didn’t go 20 yards and piled up. Later that next morning, I was successful in tagging a very nice, wide 10-point. Both bucks that my wife and I harvested is what the kids call a “PB,” personal best. Great time in the woods and the hard off-season work paid off with our freezer bounty!

Good: Didn’t see a lot of big bucks but did see bucks and a lot of does.

Good: Saw plenty deer. Just failed to see the big one.

Good: We had a pretty good year. The deer went nocturnal from before Thanksgiving until after Christmas.

Walker Co. E-2, G-3, F-2, P-3

Excellent: Saw deer every sit.

Excellent: I saw more bucks of six points or more than I ever have. I took a nice 9-point.

Good: Saw quite a few deer. Good rut activity.

Good: I went hunting, the deer showed up, I got the job done.

Fair: Not sure why but didn’t see as many deer this year.

Poor: No deer, too many people hunting public. The WMAs don’t need to be open the whole season for archery. WMAs can’t support everyday hunting. Killing all the deer out there means it is going to end up like John’s Mountain WMA, a dead sea where there is like one deer every 100 square miles.

Poor: Did not have an opportunity to hunt.

Walton Co. E-5, G-8, F-3, P-1

Excellent: Killed my two biggest bucks this year. Saw deer every time I hunted.

Excellent: I saw many deer but chose not to take one.

Excellent: Seeing lots of deer from my stand and even more on the trail camera. Feeder and mineral block seems to draw them in for a 50-yard shot.

Excellent: Saw deer all season.

Excellent: Have seen lots of deer this season.

Good: Good harvest thus far. Just wished the season was longer.

Good: Harvested a nice 10-point in the middle of November after the rut.

Good: Need to get rid of baiting.

Good: My grandson got two nice bucks for the season.

Good: Saw some deer but not the numbers as the past years.

Good: Saw several good bucks and a lot of bucks that need another year or so.

Fair: I didn’t seem to see as many deer.

Fair: Less deer sightings and less rutting activity.

Ware Co. E-1, G-5, P-2

Excellent: Good time with son-in-law, grandson and granddaughter.

Good: Excellent activity October through first week of November. After that, mature buck activity dropped off. Doe activity stayed consistent into December. Activity overall has slowed late in the season. Missed opportunity on a great 8-point early in season.

Good: I had a close encounter with a nice 8-point buck but did not harvest him.

Poor: Dog hunters ruining still hunting. They run all over like they own everything. Dog hunters shoot everything they see. No management whatsoever.

Poor: No shooter bucks.

Warren Co. E-5, G-11, F-3, P-4

Excellent: Saw a lot of deer all season long. I harvested a deer for meat. The rut was very exciting this year with a lot of activity. Every doe that was seen had a buck of some size behind her during the rut. My 10-year-old harvested his best buck to date. Other members in the club had success and harvested deer. Had another quality buck harvested.

Excellent: The deer population on my tracts were healthy and plentiful. I was able to harvest two big bucks! It was a great season.

Excellent: Killed my biggest/heaviest buck (10-point) ever since I have been hunting. My 13-year-old son harvested a doe and my friend who hunts with us got a nice 7-point buck.

Excellent: Saw more deer than in years past.

Excellent: Saw deer 75% of sits. Hunted approximately 25 days, two sits per day. Harvested two does. Let several 1 1/2- to 2 1/2-year-old bucks walk.

Good: Better deer herd and numbers were up.

Good: Saw plenty of deer.

Good: A lot of deer and saw more variety of bucks than ever before.

Good: There are more people interested in hunting and getting outdoors. This is great but there is a downside when hunters lack the knowledge to know a mature deer from those that do not need to be shot.

Good: Started out poorly because of the weather and my big deer would only move at night. As colder weather moved in, it got better

Good: Saw lots of bucks.

Good: I saw a deer or multiple deer every single hunt I went on this year, so the population is healthy. I did take one doe this year and saw a mature buck. Still a week and half left and I have had my target buck within range twice now. It’s just been too dark.

Fair: Not many mature bucks. Limited daylight deer movement.

Fair: Lowest number of deer seen and killed.

Poor: Mostly saw young or yearling deer. Very few mature bucks on trail cams.

Poor: Didn’t hunt in 2023.

Poor: People don’t hunt anymore. All I see is people sitting around feeders waiting for the deer. I think it takes away from the hunters who prefer the fair-chase method of hunting.

Washington Co. E-10, G-12, F-3

Excellent: Saw more deer this year than years past. Lots of nice bucks.

Excellent: I was able to harvest two quality bucks. Consistent observations for most of the season.

Excellent: Took my two largest archery bucks, saw a lot of rut activity. Had a lot of doe opportunities early, but it’s fallen off hard by the end of the season.

Excellent: Saw more shooters this year than previous years, owned this land since 2016.

Excellent: I saw plenty of deer and harvested all I needed.

Excellent: I saw deer 95% of the time.

Excellent: Harvested a nice, mature 9-point and saw others.

Excellent: Saw 276 deer, 16 were 8-points.

Excellent: Abundant deer sightings, best early November rut in years.

Excellent: Plenty of deer, chasing and decent bucks on their feet.

Good: Weather.

Good: Saw plenty of bucks and does with several opportunities to harvest a buck; however, I passed. Killed one doe.

Good: Saw a lot of small bucks and lots of does, especially small does.

Good: Saw lot of deer, just no shooters.

Good: Saw deer often but were smaller racks.

Good: Saw lots of deer. Harvested a few does. Lots of young bucks but mature buck daytime activity was scarce.

Good: Saw plenty of deer.

Good: Saw a lot of deer, not as many bucks as hoped.

Good: I saw a lot of deer and harvested a few. I saw too many wild hogs and didn’t harvest enough. I didn’t see enough turkeys.

Fair: Wasn’t able to get a buck.

Fair: I saw some deer but no bucks worth shooting.

Wayne Co. E-1, G-2, F-1, P-1

Excellent: Even though our lease was heavily cut, I saw a number of deer and our club has harvested a number of good bucks.

Good: Saw deer and some good young bucks.

Fair: The doe population in Wayne County is too low.

Poor: Dog hunters running over the property.

Webster Co. E-3, G-2, F-1, P-1

Excellent: We saw a lot of deer and some small bucks. Wife and friend bagged two nice ones, the most in a while.

Good: Saw plenty of deer. A lot of small bucks let go and a few shooter bucks I’d like to take on video.

Good: It’s not all about killing deer for me. Just being at the camp with friends and long-time hunting buddies, being outside and seeing all the critters God created is very relaxing and helps put every day craziness in perspective.

Fair: At least three large hog sounders altering deer movement patterns.

Poor: Few deer, not rut.

Wheeler Co. E-2, G-3, F-2, P-1

Excellent: We saw plenty of deer and took multiple quality bucks.

Good: Any time you get to be in the woods is good.

Good: Saw plenty of deer when I was able to hunt. I was not able to hunt much due to some surgery that my wife had and that required me to be around the house a lot. Only shot one 8-point and that was to cull him out of the breeding stock. He was chasing does the morning I shot him. Saw deer every time I did hunt.

Good: Good season, but the hunting was different this year because of the food sources. There were no acorns in the creek bottoms and very few on the hills. Usually, a big buck will not graze in a food plot (except maybe at night). However, this year was an exception. The deer really took to the food plots this year due to the shortage of food.

Good: Not as many deer seen as last year.

Fair: Saw plenty of deer but no good shooter bucks.

Fair: Didn’t see a lot of bucks.

Poor: Very few deer seen but plenty of pigs.

White Co. G-6, F-1, P-2

Good: I got deer meat in the freezer.

Good: Saw deer every day but not many mature bucks.

Good: Saw a lot of mature deer.

Good: Deer on my property, went to several WMAs and saw deer. One buck, two does in freezer.

Poor: I hunted on Chattahoochee WMA and Dukes Creek on four hunts total, and I only saw one doe. My friends who hunted it as much as me or more only saw two does total. We have hunted Chattahoochee WMA for more than 40 years and Dukes Creek before it was state land, so we know some of the best places to hunt deer. I’m not sure why the numbers are so low, but if you look at the harvest numbers, it is totally pathetic. I sure hope the numbers increase for the next generation of hunters, so that it will get enough hunters to keep it open for hunters.

Poor: Could only hunt in national forest because of where I work and where I live. WMAs are too far away. DNR gives me no chance to kill a doe.

Whitfield Co. E-2, G-3, F-1

Excellent: Lots of deer and some nice bucks.

Excellent: I’ve hunted this 10-acre plot I live on and killed a fork horn. First deer I killed in years, so it was an excellent season! Tasty venison, too

Good: Coyote population seems to have decreased in the area I hunted.

Fair: Wasn’t able to hunt as much as normal.

Wilcox Co. E-4, G-1

Excellent: Saw more deer than I have in several seasons.

Excellent: Took one of the biggest 8-points. Just love being outdoors, being able to hunt.

Excellent: I have seen piles of deer since the start of the season in September. I killed my biggest buck to date with a bow the day before rifle season opened. I have let some really nice young bucks walk that I’m looking forward to hopefully catching a glimpse of next year, and I have had three encounters with the big buck I’ve been chasing but just haven’t been able to seal the deal.

Good: Did see a few bucks that will be shooters next year. Rut seemed to be really late this year between Thanksgiving and early December. Overall can’t complain, just great to be able to spend time in the woods before regular folks like me get out bid by rich folks.

Wilkes Co. E-6, G-9, F-8, P-3

Excellent: Saw more deer than previous years. Lots of smaller bucks and my wife and I each harvested a mature buck. Another reason we saw an increase in deer was the group of hunters who leased beside our property lost their lease. They had the mentality of, “if it’s brown it’s down.”

Excellent: Great rut activity. High deer numbers.

Excellent: Killed 10 does and a mature 130-class buck. Saw lots of deer. Had great time in the field with friends.

Excellent: More deer on my property than ever. Several 120- to 130-class bucks have been seen. Letting them grow another year. Working on managing the herd better.

Excellent: Saw lots of deer, killed enough. Only complaint I might have was I missed a couple. Maybe next time.

Good: I have seen more deer this year than I have in a long, long time. It is nice to hunt and see deer whether you shoot one or not. It’s not all about killing one just because you can!

Good: Took a nice buck on the first day of the general firearms season. Can only hunt on weekends and rainy weather curtailed or cancelled several hunts.

Good: I saw good numbers of deer throughout the season. Some rutting activity from younger bucks; however bucks in 3-year-plus age class were predominantly at night on trail cams. Overall, it was a good season.

Good: Killed two nice bucks the first two weekends of rifle season.

Good: No rain.

Good: Saw several deer every hunt. Let three bucks walk that will hopefully make it to next year.

Fair: Have a couple of nice bucks on camera, big 10 and 8, but they have still not made a daytime mistake. All pics of them are in the middle of the night. Many small bucks and tons of does. Still just watching. Had an overabundance of hogs trying to stake their claim. They are doing a lot of damage, including breaking feeders!

Fair: Saw fewer adult deer than usual.

Fair: Just not seeing mature bucks.

Fair: Very few mature bucks seen. Did not harvest any this year. Deer sightings overall were down significantly from last year and even does were generally small, 1 1/2 year olds. Was able to take a couple of does, neither were very large, but again the choices were very slim this year. Bucks weren’t coming out and does were small and fairly rare themselves.

Fair: Saw plenty of deer and the rut was good but didn’t see many shooter bucks.

Poor: Lack of deer sightings. The deer were almost completely nocturnal.

Poor: No deer because our bag limits are way too high. We need to go to an official tag system instead of just a harvest record.

Poor: Deer season no buenos! Wood cutters smashed blinds and feeders. Maybe the deer will come back next season.

Wilkinson Co. E-4, G-4, F-5, P-2

Excellent: Lots of deer, food plots are still keeping them coming.

Excellent: Based on the number of deer I observed.

Excellent: I was able to kill a mature buck a half hour into my first morning sit of the gun season. More importantly I saw several 3 1/2- to 4 1/2-year-old bucks as the season progressed. Of course I saw several does, but I also saw several fawns, which is a major improvement over the past few years. As usual, there were many young bucks.

Excellent: Passed up a lot of small deer. Nothing worthwhile for freezer meat. Been letting out-of-state weekend warriors kill the deer as usual. Woods full of acorns but corn put out by the pallets for the hogs to eat!

Good: We know we have good bucks but mostly caught on cameras at night.

Good: Lots of deer. Lots of small bucks to grow future.

Good: I hunted 37 times and counted 138 deer. Interesting fact, in November, on three of my hunts I saw ZERO deer, in January on two of my hunts I saw ZERO deer, in December on ALL hunts I saw deer. Did not hunt October. I saw two nice bucks from deer stands but many nice bucks were nocturnal on trail cameras.

Fair: Lots of does seen early season. Saw absolutely no deer the last hunt. Add bear hunting to Wilkinson County. We see lots of bears, and they are destructive.

Fair: Very little rut activity compared to previous years.

Fair: Saw some decent bucks on camera but hardly any in person. Should have some good years to come if they will come out in the daylight.

Poor: Low number of deer sighted.

Poor: Hot weather, low deer population.

Worth Co. E-2, G-3, F-2, P-1

Excellent: Saw higher deer population and more mature buck activity in daylight.

Excellent: We had an excellent deer season this year. I harvested a good 9-point and my son was able to get a really nice 10-pointer.

Good: Lots of activity and plenty of deer.

Good: We saw a lot of deer. Deer from last season to this season did not gain any antler size, they stayed the same. Could have been from the four weeks of 110-degree weather. We had 10 kids kill their first bucks and five kids killed double does in a single hunt.

Fair: No quality bucks.

Fair: Saw a lot of deer but the bucks were young. Antlers weren’t up to par. Food plots were late due to drought.

Poor: Too many hunters shooting bucks that aren’t mature yet.

Baiting Comments

• Put out corn and get a lot of pictures, mostly at night, but as for hunting, really not much difference.

Feeding/food plots helps to improve the quality of deer in pine forest where farms are not around.

• Deer are bigger, bigger racks.

• Lots of opinions on this but it does help to see game while hunting and monitor with trail cams.

• The quality of deer hunting in Georgia improves every year. I think hunters are passing the smaller bucks and holding out for the bigger buck they are seeing at the bait sites on camera.

• As a senior hunter, WMAs need to open more access for us, such as open gates to senior hunters because toting a stand a long distance to places to hunt is no longer possible.

• See more deer and can be more selective with what gets harvested.

• I am able to harvest more does. However, it has not enhanced the opportunity on mature bucks at all, except by cameras.

• 100% select harvest is the only way to grow mature deer. Just because they come to a feeder doesn’t mean you have to kill it.

• Let’s go back to being woodsmen and hunters please.

• Able to get an idea of deer numbers and recruitment using cameras over bait.

• Lots of trophy bucks this year. Our feeding program has worked great, with results.

• Quantity of deer seen has improved. Chances of harvesting a big buck also improve with the dominant bucks checking does around feeders.

• Although we do have feeders on our property, I do not personally hunt near or over the feeders and do not see the benefit, if any.

• Multiple hunters with feeding areas has changed deer hunting as to the ability to hunt natural food sources and travel patterns on my club. The deer, especially the more mature bucks and does, realize they can wait until dark to move and approach feeding areas. It also concentrates the does in fewer areas due to the lack of need to move and find food, which decreases the buck movement in the rut. Does use less area so the bucks travel less to find a receptive doe. Also, the turkey population has decreased significantly since baiting became legal in my opinion. I believe more wet corn is causing the birds to get sick and die off or not reproduce as strong.

• First of all, I do not hunt over bait. I am a member of a very small minority on our 1,900-acre lease. I believe that the legalization of hunting over bait has negatively impacted deer hunting. We now see less mature bucks. One reason I believe is that hunters who hunt over bait are always driving out to feeders in order to fill them. Instead of teaching the next generation of hunters how to identify natural food sources, bedding areas and travel corridors, we are teaching them that hunting is going to Walmart or TSC, load up on corn, dump it out and watch it from a blind. For me, that is not hunting. In addition, the corn attracts and feeds more raccoons and feral hogs. The hogs tear up food plots and scarf up acorns. The raccoons predate on turkey nests. I have not seen one positive impact on hunting that is the result of the legalization of hunting over bait.

• Nocturnal deer have no reason to be on their feet in daylight hours.

• I’m afraid that the legalized baiting may help spread CWD. Would like to see season shortened for a couple of years like the Midwest states do.

• The use of corn is bitter sweet. I hunt on my private property sometimes with corn. However, I think overall baiting has become a negative impact, due to the feeding of indirect animals such as raccoons, along with the concentration of deer (future disease?).

• Deer feeders with corn do help with attracting some deer. Most feeders are monitored with cameras and help our club to evaluate and plan more successful hunts. Although hunting near the feeders do not guarantee seeing deer, the corn seems to have added weight and made the deer fatter.

• I feed year-round, looking forward to next hunting season.

• Great change.

• I do not hunt over feeders.

• Legalizing hunting over feed statewide has been one of the best things for deer hunting in decades. I live and hunt on the northern side of the old line where it was legal to hunt over feed on the south side of the line but not legal on the north side. Thank you Governor Deal for some common sense.

• Deer don’t move as much when people bait, and it makes mature bucks nocturnal!

• We rarely feed. It brings hogs.

• Feeders allow you more time to look at the animal.

• I do not hunt over bait, don’t consider that hunting.

• Seems like we are getting way more deer on camera but they are at night.

• Have not hunted over corn and no plans to do so.

• Sitting over a feeder is not hunting. People have less respect for game animals now. It has turned into a business, instead of a way of life.

• Improved, brings in the deer but also the hogs!

• Improved, way better.

• I would really like to see baiting become illegal again. I don’t think it’s any coincidence our turkey’s population began to decline once baiting was legalized state wide.

• Allows younger hunters to not only see deer but be able to judge them better before pulling the trigger.

• They are staying on private property eating all the corn and food plots and going on public for acorns or traveling around.

• Improved. Feed gives you a tool to help with getting deer to your hunting site when your food plots don’t do well. The deer are in much better shape and are very good.

• It allows the ability to get kids into hunting easier.

• Corn/baiting is not magic, but it helps to bring the deer at some point to one location, where I can get trail-camera photos of most of the deer on our property. It also brings does, which brings bucks during the rut.

• Due to the baiting laws and cell cameras, it has made it easier to be selective on what and when you hunt and not shoot younger deer.

• Can be more selective now. Don’t have to shoot the first deer I see.

• Improved because it puts game in my area and it really has helped my bowhunting.

• We don’t hunt over bait/feeders.

• We are able to supplemental protein feed year-round now and provide essential minerals the deer need. With this we see better quality deer and more deer.

• I believe it’s good for the deer and the hunter.

• We trophy hunt and this gives us the opportunity to make sure the deer is a shooter.

• Improved, see more concentrated action.

• Improved, get a bunch of pictures.

• No change, deer take about three days to realize the bait is still there after it gets dark out. We realized after watching our cameras.

• Improved, larger bucks were harvested.

• Improved, healthier deer.

• Able to be more selective of game.

• Able to be more selective of game.

• It has allowed me to be more selective on the deer I take and even how many does I take. The deer where I hunt/feed seem to maintain a higher-average weight year-round.

• It was being done by others before legislation.

• Feed has only improved the overall heath of the deer herd and has started a trend among hunters to now be stewards and managers of the land.

• I’ve noticed the deer I’m processing have more fat on them. There’s a layering of fat all along the abdominal wall that I have not seen before until recently.

• We can now keep some deer on the property and it’s nice to place a kid where you know he will see a deer.

• Improved, see more deer.

• Declined, deer seem to be more nocturnal and do not really have to travel for food.

• I personally don’t hunt over bait but feeding them has kept deer on property.

• No change, it’s only effective if your neighbors aren’t doing it. If they are, it just balances it out.

• You see more deer on camera.

• It is so easy that women and children can stand by a 50-lb. sack of whole corn on the ground and kill deer, bears, turkeys, hogs, coons, grays, rabbits, birds, fox, skunks…

• Our club doesn’t allow hunting over feed, but I know hunters still do, and I believe that it has caused more deer to be killed.

• Improved only in the fact that the natural food sources were limited on our property.

• I do not support baiting for deer and thus do not put out corn, etc. There are feeders on adjacent property, but it does not seem to affect my hunting.

• Surrounding areas over indulge in the process, and I assume the game stay closer to the other areas. Doesn’t matter to me, over-feed or not.

• Better quality. I feed all year and deer are in better shape.

• Improved but out of hand. Super costly to compete with neighboring hunting, so if you don’t poor it out, you have no deer. The rich will control the hunting in the futures. Mostly out of state money.

• Declined, I don’t see as many good bucks as I did before baiting.

• Mainly able to keep the does around, which becomes important during the rut

• Love Georgia hunting.

• Improved, able to see more deer.

• Able to keep deer in my hunting area but hard to see them during the daylight. They know the corn is there and they know they don’t have to move around so much in the daytime.

• You can put out feed and see all the deer you want but it’s become a “who can pour the most corn” contest. I hate it, would love to see baiting made illegal again during the season and allow supplemental feeding in the off-season.

• Being able to run cams on feeders is the biggest improvement of all. We do kill most of our deer on corn that’s spread thin in pines or field edges, not many on the feeders themselves.

• No change for me, I choose not to hunt over bait/feeders.

• I wish they would ban the use of feeders for deer and hogs. It spreads diseases and attracts hogs. Minerals are fine in my opinion and so are food plots but get rid of the feeders.

• The downsize is predator population around feeding sights has increased. Now we hunt predators, also.

• I’m hunting a lot of small land tracts where deer don’t live. Without feeders to keep deer moving through my areas, I believe my sightings would be way down

• Less food plots are planted and most people quit feeding corn after deer season, making it harder on all wildlife. Wildlife can survive without corn and food plots, but food plots during the cold winter months helps tremendously.

• Improved but I don’t like hunting over bait.

• Improved but still prefer no baiting. I only use bait because if I don’t with a smaller piece of property the deer would use bait on surrounding properties.

• Allows to monitor your deer better.

• The deer herd in my hunting area appear to be healthier overall.

• I hate hunting over bait and wish it wasn’t legal. We do NOT hunt over bait on our property.

• Food plots are still the best places to hunt.

• More opportunities to see deer for kids.

• I refuse to shoot deer over bait, it’s not really hunting.

• Population of deer in my area is high and supplemental feed really helps overall herd health. I actually feed year-round.

• Tripod feeder in food plot but they eat the food plot mostly.

• Seems better for the kids because they can see a few more deer than how it used to be!

• This is the best thing DNR has ever done! The baiting has improved deer herd and genetics. The deer are more healthy and have better survival rates. If the mast crops does not produce, the supplements help them make it through the winter.

• Seems to create activity when things get very slow, such as late in the season.

• Hunting over bait has changed absolutely nothing for me. I see it as a lazy mans way of getting results.

• Do NOT be swayed by CWD fears or anti-baiting so called purist. Supplemental feeding is just like feeding fish in a pond. It elevates carrying capacity and increases heath. And I’m and old-school hunter—50 years of it. It has made everything better, much, much better, for true deer managers. Refer to Dr. Kroll on CWD. Period.

• Declined. Don’t see the deer we use to.

• Not change. There seems to be as many deer but the quality of deer seems to have fallen slightly.

• I am able to get deer to travel in directions more beneficial to my stand location and trail cameras.

• I have an auto feeder in an area with a camera set up by it, but I don’t hunt over it.

• You definitely see more deer but mature bucks rarely go to a feeder during daylight hours.

• I’m 70 and fairly disabled. I have to draw the deer to spots that I can get my pickup to so I can retrieve it.

• Improved, see more deer.

• The quality of natural browse in southeast Georgia isn’t high, so the ability to provide food allows for much improvement of the herd.

• We have records dating from 2008, and in the past five years, we have had six bucks that had live weights over 200 pounds, all at least 8 points. None prior to that. Lots of corn and protein.

• I agree with baiting if you are on private property but definitely not on public land.

• I hunt WMAs only, but I would say if someone is hunting over a feeder and putting bait out, they should be required to hunt a certain distance from it. Food plots are not an issue with me, but I think all feeders and baiting should be illegal.

• Everyone baiting is ruining hunting, especially suburban hunting. It’s not hunting anymore. Just my opinion. I vote to make baiting illegal again.

• I feed 12 months out of the year, giving the does more protein and grain, which gives them a chance for healthy fawns and both can continue to feed on food plots all year long.

• Baiting in Georgia has ruined deer hunting in the south.

• No change. We always plan entry and exit to stands and have always kept tabs on our deer. I think it has made people lazy when it comes to scouting and learning the property you hunt.

• Declined, deer being fed on neighbor’s property.

• With food plots and oak trees in the area I hunt, deer just browse though the feeder areas.

• Improved, population in our area has increased.

• Deer are actually putting on weight and overall herd numbers are on the incline. I could kill deer either way because I have hunted on public land quite a bit, but I see the numbers on the incline on private land.

• Can see and judge bucks near feeders.

• Wish Georgia would go back to no hunting over corn with feeders being 200 yards and out of sight.

• Improved, see a lot more deer.

• Improved, we can keep soybeans out year-round.

• I feed deer all year round with protein and corn. Just not the week before opening day(s).

• Seeing bigger deer and more deer.

• Significantly more deer sightings, including nice bucks. In addition, hunting over feed affords the opportunity to better evaluate bucks for quality before shooting, as well as, evaluating button bucks to avoid mistakenly taking one.

• Deer like to eat. More food is more deer  but all at a cost.

• I feel like everyone is baiting and it has made hunting easier and changes deer movement. I choose not to use bait as I hunt WMAs, but even on private, I choose to hunt natural foliage and funnels.

• Bait is causing more pressure on the herd and in turn creating a mostly nocturnal deer population. Unless you have access to a huge piece of property where your deer don’t leave the property much, you don’t have much of a choice but to bait.

• I hunt public land, so no real change for me. However, I have seen a decline in the quality of woodsmanship among hunters and increased negative feelings about unsportsmanlike hunters from non-hunters.

• It doesn’t seem to matter. We had feed corn out but let them run dry. Two of the three bucks harvested, including the big buck, was with feeders that had been dry for longer than 20 days.

• Hogs are overtaking our property in Stewart County.

• Makes the early and late season worthwhile, plus it helps me get new hunters into the sport when I bring them since we normally see deer on the feed.

• Really allows you to see what you have and then figure your strategy. I never used feed until it was legal, even pre-season.

• Haven’t hunted in Georgia long enough to observe.

• Improved but still undecided on the types of feed though. Corn, food plots, supplements? For a better herd but not harvesting.

• Protein in feeders year-round in plots has definitely made a difference.

• When feeders are used, they tend to attract does and almost keep the bucks away. I also fear deer are now eating way too much corn, rather than their natural diet, and affecting the taste of their meat, as well as the health of the deer. I hunt both private and public lands. When feeders are present near public land, they tend to pull the deer away from the public property. Although I utilize them for any advantage they might bring when I am on private land, I have never been a fan of baiting being legal. I much prefer fair chase and I really don’t like the message being sent to youth/new hunters who hunt deer. You simply buy a feeder and plop yourself down 60 yards from it. Feeder goes off, deer come out, you shoot deer. That’s not really hunting. I’m always more proud of the deer I get on public land because that is real hunting.

Increased sightings allow a more selective harvest.

• Prefer to reverse decision and go back to illegal baiting, especially with CWD likely looming very close in neighboring states. I’d like to see more proactive than reactive responses.

• Hunting pressure has lots to do with it. Deer are getting fed all around you.

• My property is heavy in oaks, persimmons, and crabapples. Corn is a waste of money.

• It’s no good for the deer.

• Steady stream of deer coming to the feed and minerals.

• I do not hunt over feed.

• My quality of hunting has gone up, but I don’t feed. The people around our farm who feed are seeing more nocturnal activity and more predators. I believe my making the choice to not feed is limiting access into our property to check feeders. I am limiting hog problems and I am limiting opportunities for predators.

• Improved, see more deer but less mature bucks.

• Actually I only started hunting after it became legal, so I really don’t know.

• I think the feed program should end during firearm season.

• Declined, cost of equipment and feed.

• We see more deer since legal baiting began, and we use bait stations primarily to harvest does late in the season. We also feed year-round and use feed stations to survey and track the health of our deer herd. But I wouldn’t cry if hunting over bait was outlawed tomorrow because I’m afraid that our young hunters are losing the ability to truly hunt when all we do in some cases is let them sit next to a feeder and pull the trigger on a hungry whitetail.

• I was able to be more selective on which deer to harvest.

• Even though corn made the deer almost totally nocturnal. I still knew what I had on the property from spreading out corn.

• Can’t use bait on Fort Benning.

• Holds the does better, which is the key to small tracts.

• I only started hunting again in the last two years. Last time I hunted was in 2008 under similar circumstances and saw way fewer deer.

• Feed helps a lot early and late season.

• I have witnessed the improvement in herd health by supplemental feeding the right feed, not corn.

• I don’t bait but it does bring them in, especially late season.

• Can’t feed in a WMAs or on national forest land and it’s hard for hunters to actually kill a deer when they’re being pulled from the edges of public land.

• Tough question. I am 100% anti-corn. It kills turkeys and biologist (the people we should listen to) are against it. However, the neighbors use corn and over pressure corn sites with no regard to wind or alerting deer. The deer become nocturnal on their property. That makes them daylight on my property. Then I kill more deer than them, including mature bucks. So “technically” corn improves hunting for me but at the expense of the neighbors who rely on it.

• Protein seems to have yielded more substantial antlers and bigger-bodied deer. I don’t feed straight corn but always a protein supplement.

• See more does at feed sites.

• Attracts more deer and increases success rate.

• Late season is more productive now that corn is legal.

• After the rut the corn has messed up hunting because the deer know where corn is and stop feeding in daylight hours.

• Supplemental feeding supports feral hog populations.

• No doubt using food attractants, whether food plots or other feed, helps see deer. If you take kids hunting and they see nothing, they are not going to want to go. And for the anti-feed crowd, if you don’t want to, don’t feed. Nobody’s making you. Go stalk them up or whatever method you want. You do your thing, I will do mine. Happy hunting.

• Only changed the ease of killing does.

• Feed keeps the deer interested, but I prefer to hunt the acorn crop and food plots if available.

• No difference really but corn does allow better pictures from cameras so you are able to identify which deer to go after.

• I feel like it’s a good thing because now they can have food and not compete against the hogs that eat everything Plus the quality and the size of the bucks are getting nicer and bigger.

• I don’t use bait.

• The number of deer seen while in the stand has increased. However, the legalization of bait coincided with our timber being thinned and starting a prescribed fire rotation. So, more than likely it is from the improved habitat.

• See more game in general.

• Have not noticed a difference in my area. I am concerned with “bait” and CWD.

• Deer and quality has improved, but turkey populations have decreased.

• When done correctly, it helps the hunter in a state where the woods are typically thick (pine plantation).

• Before everyone could bait I saw more deer in daylight than I do now.

• Since about everyone puts corn out now to see deer, you have to put it out. When corn disappears, the deer disappear. The more you put out, the more deer you see.

• Our club doesn’t allow corn. Reason why is because bears are illegal to hunt over corn. So I think because of this, it allows the neighbors to draw the deer away from our 3,000-acre club. I think there is a rule problem with the DNR allowing hunters to shoot deer over corn but not bear? Bears are a pain in the butt. They knock over feeders, mess with cams, get into deer blinds, etc. I think they mess with the deer population, as well. I know I have never seen a bear or a deer in the same picture. In fact they take over the corn sights pre-season.

• I don’t know if it’s the feed or just better property to hunt now versus before. I’d lean toward it being property.

• I think people will see the deer accustomed to the feeders go nocturnal very quickly once they notice hunters in the area, at least in my experience. Overall it hasn’t helped me with harvest but helps with herd nutrition.

• I wish baiting would be illegal again.

• We don’t shoot the deer at the feeders. We plant food plot and have protein in our feeders. Deer hunting over feed is a bad thing. Corn piles don’t help with antler development.

• I feel like it improved deer hunting because we can give them more protein than the food plots will provide.

• It’s the draw on does that helps. Of course the bucks follow the does during the rut. Also, while putting feed out concentrates the feeding area to a smaller spot, planting a food plot and hunting over it, or hunting over prime fields of corn or soy, is not that far removed from a spread-feeder.

• More larger bucks.

• I’m old school, so I do not hunt over bait.

• I’ve seen little change but every one hunts different. I don’t hunt over feeders but have seen how they help deer get through the winter with better quality of deer being harvested.

• I really enjoy filling the feeders throughout the year and seeing all the pics from the trail cameras. The feeding really helps late in the season as food starts to diminish in the hardwoods and a lot of properties do not have food plots, so being able to feed is a big plus on getting the deer through the rest of the winter.

• I still don’t hunt over bait.

• Many deer are coming to our feeders. Problem this year is that a black bear found them and wouldn’t leave.

• Deer become creatures of habit. Now they treat corn just like any other food source. I personally don’t think it helps that much, but it certainly makes you feel better.

• I don’t care for the practice.

• Late in the season is a must if you want to see deer.

• It has certainly improved scouting and locating.

• I don’t hunt over bait personally. I wish it was banned.

• I have actually changed from corn over to a mix of corn, soybeans and roasted peanuts so that the deer get protein, also.

• Deer are more predictable.

• Seems to have just pulled in more hogs. I’m now overrun with hogs.

• Great for kids to see deer.

• I don’t hunt over bait so no charge.

• I put corn out but rarely hunt over it.

• Gives ethical hunters the chance at good management practices. If you are bringing a young hunter along on the hunt, just giving them an opportunity to see deer in the wild is a bonus to them.

• Corn has changed the hunting and made people lazy.

• I am pleased that I can hunt over corn.

• Lots of acorn this year. Made it tough on where to hunt. Deer just weren’t concentrated in any certain area.

• I usually hunt public land where baiting isn’t allowed. Last year I was able to hunt over bait in private land and saw more big bucks than I ever have in one season. Got a very big 8-pointer.

• Hunters are killing bucks before they reach their prime. I still don’t hunt over bait, but I do have it out but still use the 200-yard rule. Also, I would like to see both bucks 15 inch or four on one side. This goes for WMAs. Also, Rich Mountain where I hunt is in bad decline of bucks. There has to be something done.

• Once baiting deer was allowed, I tend to spend a lot of money on corn and feed. Too much money.

• I hunt on a timber lease and run feeders year-round. The feeders are not gravity feeders but are set on timers so they only get a fixed amount. So while the amount of feed is regulated, I have still noticed the deer seem to be bigger and the antler size has improved. Ironically, I hardly see a deer at the feeder during the day. They seem to visit mainly at night, which is supported by trail-cam pictures.

• Draws deer in so I get a good look at the one I want.

• Can be choosy about what you shoot. Helps to get some age on our deer.

• Should cut the doe days in Gordon County back so we aren’t killing all our mature does.

• The ability to hunt over feed has helped out 100%. It keeps deer in an area that deer don’t normally frequent and improves deer encounters and also allows supplemental nutrition all year long.

• I have never taken a quality buck over any type of feed. I get a lot of pictures of them feeding at night but not a single daylight picture as of yet.

• Feeding can be great for deer if done right. We provide protein from gravity feeders that the deer love. Then you just have to be selective about what you harvest. Even as much as the deer love the protein, I have noticed they like the green food plots even better. This is on private land.

• If nothing else, it brings in more action. I’m not a big proponent of bait as I don’t see much success with mature bucks. However, I do enjoy hunts of seeing several deer. It keeps the boredom down. I’ve also noticed bait increases rut action. Bait tends to bring lots of does. Bucks follow, and my area tends to get lively during that period, not necessarily over bait but the area. I strongly believe my area has improved overall with deer count due to bait (corn).

• Has kept deer on the property.

• It makes it easier, I think, for the small properties to bring deer in. I don’t have room to have food plots. Overall though I’d support going back to no baiting because if the neighbors bait, you have too, as well. With the feeders and cameras up, I can target very specific times to hunt, and since using both, I spend less time in the tree and have been more successful.

• Don’t hunt over bait.

• Healthier deer herd by far.

• I highly encouraged hunting over bait on the original surveys. Now, I highly discourage it. I thought more people would supplemental feed. Almost all hunters use corn or other sugar substance, which is horrible for the herd. Now it’s hard for people to even tell the true age of a deer because the teeth are decaying at a faster rate.

• Bait is just another option, but its use has saved more mature deer than it has caused to be killed. They learn quickly to approach downwind.

• Hunting over bait allows for more ethical shots and allows you to look the animal over to see if he/she should be harvested.

• We need more opportunities to hunt feral pigs on WMA land.

• Went to Texas two years ago, Georgia is better.

• I feel the season should be pushed back a few weeks. It’s too hot in mid September, and I think it would be more beneficial to hunt until the end of January. Start season Oct. 1 for bow.

• I provide feed for deer on my hunting property. However, I don’t actually hunt over the corn.

• I believe it’s helped keep the deer in the area, as well as keeping them well fed and healthy.

• I don’t hunt directly over bait. I utilize feed and corn to supplement what’s lacking in their natural forage.

• Easier to take a doe in bow season.

• I see more deer.

• I hunt private and WMAs. Private deer are slaughtered eating corn and ALL surrounding properties near WMAs have bait luring them off WMAs. It’s honestly bad hunters.

• Deer are adapting to feed at night. More younger deer are dropping.

• I don’t strategically use feeding to maximize its impact.

• I still don’t feed. Seems a lot of money put to waste. A good food plot is way more effective and better for the herd.

• Competition has altered the deer movement. Human presence in feeding has driven deer to becoming more nocturnal.

• I was out of state for a long time in the military. I saw more deer in Georgia before baiting when I would come home on leave.

• We only planted fields, no other feed has been given.

• I think in terms of deer seen, I think it has helped. But, I believe we have taken the overall hunting experience out of it by relying on bait to provide us with opportunities.

• It’s great to be able to keep the resident deer counted and the population managed.

• I prefer fair chase.

• I don’t hunt over my feed. I typically feed for camera pictures.

• Have always seen does at our natural food sources but see more now. Doesn’t seem to change buck sightings.

• If you are the only one doing it, it works well, but if everyone around you is doing it, deer get up feed and lay back down. Thank goodness for the rut. I put in good food plots.

• For someone who doesn’t own planting equipment, feed was a game changer for me. The quantity of mature bucks being seen increased, and as a result, I am able to let younger deer mature without worrying about not seeing a buck again.

• Deer just ate at night.

• See and able to harvest more deer. Great for people like me who get to mostly hunt on the weekends.

• It has helped in the fact that I can get a better survey of the deer on my property using a trail cam at the feeder allowing me to be more patient waiting on a mature buck.

• No change. I hunt on Fort Benning. Baiting is not allowed.

• I hunt mostly WMAs, so I don’t bait.

• Deer come to feed.

• New baiting laws are great for children in my opinion for deer. Bridging the connection between a child and their first buck is much easier with the help of bait. I think it will help excite the future generation of young hunters by increasing their chances of seeing and bagging game and is something I would really like see stay in place in Georgia.

• Able to give deer the nutrients they need all year long. The negative is most good bucks nocturnal.

• I see no change in the hunting over feed. I mostly hunt public land/WMA even though I have access to private with food plots. I leave those for the kids.

• Massive amounts of corn during rut decreased amount of daylight activity of does.

• Inasmuch as we plant food plots that are not hunted over, feeders are used as well as mineral licks that has improved our deer antlers and body weight. Most of our hunters are selective about what is taken and try for a mature deer. Our doe harvest is expected to increase in the coming years as we now have to many!

• I don’t see any difference. Maybe at the first of the season as long as white oaks are not a factor. My opinion is they tend to feed around feeders after dark.

• Do not hunt over bait. Not ethical.

• Declined, enjoyed hunting more when corn wasn’t such a big part of it.

• Hunting over bait is unsporting and bad for the health of the deer population. CWD inches closer and closer to our state.

• Being able to supplement their diet seems to have helped keep the deer looking good all season.

• More deer on cams, more predictable sighting. Still have food plots.

• Corn feeders are going to be the downfall of deer hunting in Georgia.

• Saw and killed bigger bucks before legalization of hunting over feed. Corn piles/ feeders are everywhere.

• When acorns and berries are gone, it’s nice to legally be able to keep deer coming through your hunting spot, if for no other reason, you can opt to take one on video to show your kids, grandkids.

• I do not and have never hunted over feed.

• Deer concentrating in the area of a feeder has allowed me to become more selective in what I shoot. Random encounters based on hunting where I THOUGHT deer maybe produced less quality deer going into my freezer. Now, I am more selective taking deer that should be killed.

• As to numbers of deer seen and taken, the quality has improved. From a quality of experience perspective, I am not sure. While I am seeing more deer and have taken more mature bucks, particularly in the early season by using feeders to concentrate deer movement, I am not sure I am enjoying the experience as much. It is definitely easier now. I own more than 10 deer stands. I used to put out at least six on our property, targeting travel corridors between bedding area and feeding locations, rub and scrapelines, pinch points and funnels, persimmons and muscadines in the early season. This year, I only have four out. Three are near feeders, and one is on a food plot. Two of the feeders have cellular game cameras on them. The other two stand spots are in holes with no cell service. I know I don’t have to use the feeders and cell cameras, but it is hard to justify not using things that are legal and can help save time, which there never seems to be enough of. We didn’t use feeders the first year they were legal, and the neighbors were seeing lots more deer than us. So we decided to use them to keep deer on our property. It is quite hard to not hunt near them when you know that’s where the deer will tend to be. We have noticed that the deer are not coming to them as constantly and regularly as they did the first couple of years, so perhaps the deer are going through their own adaptation process. They used the feeders very little when the white oaks dropped in large quantities this year. I have seen many deer feeding on white oaks 30 yards from the feeder that don’t go to the feeder.

• The problem I have with it is the ones who hunt one or two weekends a year will pile the corn up and take younger deer, but they have that right. In 20 years if the feed store closes, no one is going to know how to hunt.

• We do put feed out with cameras to keep track of our herd but rarely hunt over it. For one, it’s too expensive to feed a lot. Corn doesn’t benefit the deer. We do keep some protein feed in our feeders, but the raccoons eat most of it. I mainly feel like it’s taking away woodsmanship. People don’t have to learn to hunt anymore. They just pour out corn.

• Don’t agree with hunting over bait.

• Able to give the deer more nutrients and supplements.

• Just to be clear, we do not hunt over the bait. We do have feed sites that we keep corn and protein in year-round. We do not allow corn to be poured out on the ground at a stand site. It has also increased the hog population and that is never good.

• Hunting over bait has made it easier for hunters to kill more antlerless deer and DNR has not adjusted the antlerless deer limit accordingly.

• Being able to feed corn and protein to the deer on my property year-round has clearly made a difference in the quality of antlers the bucks are growing.

• I feed during the season but not because I like to. We hunt a small lease surrounded by other small leases. I think we all have the same mindset, if you don’t feed and everyone around you does, where are the deer going to be? I do not like the law as it is. Supplemental feed during the season is too costly and many of us only do it to compete with our neighbors.

• Tough to quantify how baiting over an entire season has impacted me. Early archery season, after having target buck on summer feed pattern to a bait sight, has certainly impacted success rates during the first week or two of archery season, would say improved results of opportunity to kill target buck, so if that is the stand for improved “quality,” then yes. Don’t really believe bait stations have “improved” antlerless hunting. Where I hunt you can have success killing/seeing does without bait. So I approach this question with has baiting improved my hunting of mature (only) bucks…. early season, yes. Has it improved the “quality” in terms of antler growth, deer health, I don’t know if solely based on in-season baiting.

• I personally feel it has helped the deer herd overall. I wish more hunters would feed all year, not just during the hunting season.

• Improved with the legalization of bait. We are more aware of the deer on our hunting club. However, as president of the club I believe our hunting skills have suffered.

• I do not bait. I plant food plots.

• Our neighbors use bait. It seems to have reduced deer sightings.

• Being able to identify target bucks is a lot easier. Deer sightings are up for all members. I feel feeders along with good food plots have helped our overall experience tremendously.

• Hunt over food plots.

• Definitely see more deer when hunting over bait. Do not do it every time but it increases movement in the evenings.

• Much easier to introduce kids to hunting when the odds of them seeing deer and being able to at least take a doe is much higher. Also, it makes it much easier to survey your deer herd and manage the doe ratio. Lastly, game wardens no longer have a reason to sneak around and disrupt hunts just to see if you have corn illegally placed in your hunt area.

• You have to look no further than the pages of GON to see what the feeding program has done for the whitetail deer in this state. Georgia has become a trophy destination for hunters seeking a giant buck, and I believe it is a direct effect of the legalization of baiting and the supplemental feeding of the deer.

• Corn keeps the does around, which helps keep the bucks nearby most of the time.

• It has given us pictures of our deer herd that we might not have gotten otherwise. Cameras on our feeders.

• Bigger and healthier deer, especially if feeders are kept full all year. Does and fawns appear to be healthier, as well. Seeing deer is an added benefit, especially in counties that don’t have a substantial year-round food source.

• I rarely hunt over bait as I try to hunt trails going to and from feed sites and bedding areas.

• Just hoping and praying that CWD doesn’t make it to Georgia and mess our hunting up. All laws concerning out-of-state kills and moving live wild animals to this state need to be strictly enforced and made stronger.

• If we are able to feed, that provides us with the knowledge to know what deer are in the area and which deer are mature and which ones need to grow. We try to harvest deer that are 5 years of age or older. Feeding allows some of those deer to stay on your land so that they make it through each hunting season.

• I plant several acres of winter food plots for deer.

• We used to rely solely on our food plots. After acorns are gone, corn feels like cheating.

• Improved. Although baiting is legal, I still like to hunt without it. However, it does allow us to keep more deer on the property. I did not even hunt food plots until three years ago and then only because of my age.

• Feeding is great! It gives hunters who typically shoots the first deer they see a chance to see more deer and let some walk. This is year four of the feeding and we should see higher scoring deer this year on average as you now have mature bucks being born and bred during the wedding era.

• The deer get all the feed that they can eat, not only corn but protein feed and peanuts.

• I feel like this has made hunters lazy. They just put up a feeder and hunt over the feeder. They don’t have to pattern deer and hunt trails, funnels, etc. If I don’t put out corn to keep up with the neighbors, then I don’t see as many deer. It also teaches our kids the wrong message and not how to hunt deer but how to put out bait and sit over it to see them.

• We plant food plots spring and fall. With the addition of feeders, we’re seeing more deer than before.

• I believe the numbers are up and the enjoyment of hunting is better. I actually hunt less because I’m able to harvest the deer I want to kill earlier and that allows me to not have to hunt as much. And with four small kids, that’s helpful all around.

• Improved, you will go broke keeping the feeders full.. lol.

• The ability to use corn has helped tremendously with our younger kids. We are able to consistently see and harvest deer. Prior to using corn, we would struggle to get our 6- to 10-year-old kids shots on decent bucks. We run feeders on our farm from August through January, and it helps keep a lot of does on the property. We also plant 10% of the land in food plots. The combo of corn and food plots has worked exceptionally well for us.

• I’ve noticed an improvement in early season doe hunts, but other than that it remains pretty equal.

• Much more activity. Make the does happy and the bucks are sure to follow!

• No change when hunting over feed. I now hunt a property that prohibits corn because of the fear of CWD.

• You always see more when feeding.

• Our deer population has been good for many, many years. We have a large tract of land and have multiple large food plots. The majority of members believe supplemental feeding keeps the does and bucks on our property. And if we didn’t, the deer would go to adjacent properties.

• This one aspect has ruined hunting completely. No one hunts, they sit and wait. Buck upper age structure is completely gone by mid season. People just corn up and shoot. It’s sad that the state let this sport descend into this no-effort state.

• We do not use bait on our land. Neighbors do but most years we have more deer on native food sources and food plots.

• I don’t bait deer because there are plenty of them out there without it. I do plant clover though.

• The difference is marginal, but I probably have seen a few more deer than I otherwise would have.

• I have never hunted over bait before or after legalization. Now all surrounding properties have so many bait stations out that it depletes deer activity. It seems like between trail cameras and bait, every mature buck is known about and hunted harder. They either get shot or are overpressured and become nocturnal because of this.

• Feeding supplement to deer; improved antlers.

• No question that if adjoining landowners are baiting, they will be pulling some deer activity off your property… unless you do likewise.

• I don’t hunt over feed but occasionally over food plots.

• I’m not a fan of hunting deer over bait. I believe that is the reason that CWD is spreading as rapidly as it is. Most of the bag corn comes from the northern states where CWD is real bad. I wish DNR would stop all baiting everywhere.

• Marginally, I think it’s improved. I don’t think it’s worth the long-term risk of CWD.

• Feeding is good for them.

• Before we could hunt over bait, I had more time on my hands to scout and get properties to hunt. Shortly after that, as my family grew, I had less time for that, but the ability to bait them has helped me keep venison in the freezer.

• We have not seen too much change in the number of deer seen on the small tract of land we hunt. We have noticed an increase in the other species on the land, such as turkey and wild hog.

• Deer seem to become more nocturnal after feeding started.

• I don’t bait.

• Legalized hunting over bait should no longer be allowed, it has messed up the deer and deer hunting. It is not overall good nutrition for the deer, causes deer to be more weary and skittish in artificial deer feeding areas and surrounding areas, and typically mature bucks will not be hanging out at a deer feeder in the daylight.

• I hate baiting. It should be outlawed again. Increased hog population as a result and bad for turkeys.

• Really hasn’t changed. Really like watching them eat though.

• It has helped with the antler growth and deer sightings but in no way does it guarantee a deer. Destroy the habitat and the deer will find another place to dine.

• More encounters.

• People throw a pile of corn on the ground and sit over it. It’s not hunting to me, it’s killing. If venison is your primary food source, then fine.

• The skill of woodmanship is not in play as much. It’s too easy to see in stand near feeder because you know you will see deer when you sit there.

• I do not hunt over bait. It’s a moral thing for me.

• Neighbors have more money to spend on corn than I do.

• The deer are healthier and seem to be larger.

• It’s not hunting, and it costs too much to keep deer on the property because rich neighbors feed year-round.

• Baiting deer should be illegal.

• Improved for seeing more deer.

• It has brought more deer out during daylight hours.

• Have seen more deer and been able to be more selective in my harvest choices.

• Declined. Takes some thrill out of it you are feeding them, a little different than hunting them.

• We try to keep corn and protein feed for them when applicable. 4S Draw really works for us, too. Has for several years.

• I’ve been able to watch fawns, does and bucks become healthier deer, live to be more mature, and I’ve seen more deer.

• Definitely grown more deer and bigger-bodied deer with the legalization of baiting. However, it has also drastically increased the number of raccoons, hogs, and other “pests” around the feeding areas. I am glad we have the option to bait, but if we don’t start shooting more deer as a whole, we are doomed to crash this deer population. There are far too many deer in the state with not enough predation, an epizootic disease is imminent. Transmission would be rapid as so many deer are crowding into feeders, and CWD or similar outbreaks could be devastating to the economic machine that has become linked to deer hunting/baiting in south Georgia.

• I did food plots before baiting was legal in north Georgia. Being able to have feed out during the season is another choice at the deer buffet.

• We see more deer. Get more pictures of deer on our trail-cams, especially at night, but it hasn’t helped us kill any more mature bucks.

• No change, hunted over food plots prior to.

• I do not hunt over cornpiles, as it cheapens the experience in my opinion. I have no problem with others who do, and we should not judge others’ likes and dislikes.

• We feed a lot of does on our 1,200-acre hunting lease, and that brings in the big bucks most of the hunting season. The bucks don’t eat much at the feeders, but the does hang around the feeders all day long, and sooner or later the bucks show up.

• Improved, but I hate it! Cost of baiting is ridiculous, especially if you’re hunting multiple properties. Tried not baiting and deer numbers went way down. Have to bait as long as neighbors are baiting. Next generation of hunters are not going to know how to really “hunt” due to baiting. Keeping them from being real woodsmen, reading sign and scouting your way to a successful kill.

• See a lot of does and fawns at bait. I think it has changed deer movement. Deer graze,but bait makes them wait on auto feeders going of to get an easy meal without the roaming for food. I like to feel like I have set up in a good area, but bait makes it to easy to just shoot a doe or young buck.

• Improved, I see a lot of deer now.

• Do not hunt over feeders on our property.

• Declined, more nocturnal.

• Although we do have feeders out, our stand sites are not determined by them. We would see deer even without feeders as most of the year, the deer weren’t even going to them. In saying that, I do believe it has helped in the late season.

• Definitely improved the quality of bucks in Floyd County. I’ve hunted here for almost 50 years.

• We work on improving habitat and plant supplemental food plots. We do not hunt over bait.

• I hunt WMA land and have noticed corn feeders just outside the borders of the WMAs that I hunt. They are able to shoot the does that are off limits on the WMA because I hunt mostly in Region 2.

• It’s not so much hunting anymore… it’s sitting still watching a baitpile, and he with the most bait wins.

• Have never hunted over corn. Such a wrong way to hunt. Been hunting deer for over 59 years.

• I am a purist and think hunting over bait takes away from the sport. It changes the real habits of the animal. I still try not to hunt over bait. This makes it even tougher to shoot deer when everyone else is baiting. I understand we are overpopulated, but I wish we had never gone to baiting. It’s not really hunting. If we do stick with it ,and I think we will, I think residents should have to buy a baiting license like Alabama has.

• I have only hunted since being allowed to hunt over corn, so I have nothing to compare it to. I do see more does around my feeders than bucks. In my experience, feeders do not seem to affect or change how bucks travel through my areas.

• I do not agree with the legalization of baiting in Georgia and wish the law would be reversed. The heritage of hunting has been diminished, in favor of providing “instant gratification” of seeing/shooting deer over bait.

• I don’t hunt over bait.

• We plant food plots and only use the feeders for supplemental protein in the growing season.

• I do not bait on the property I hunt, but you can sure tell when the neighbors start putting out their corn and can tell when the feeders are empty.

• I hunt a lease from a lumber company that does not have any hardwood trees. Being able to feed helps keep a few does in my area through the rut after the acorn mast has been consumed!

• I understand why people want to bait and specially the idea that if I don’t do it our neighbors will keep all of our deer. However, I do not feel like overall that it’s good for the deer population. One thing baiting has done, is it hasn’t allowed me to see on camera the deer that are in my area.

• I do not hunt over bait. I prefer to hunt the deer instead.

• I plant food plots and always have, so my plots attracts deer.

• We do not feed corn or any other type of bait.

• Back in the days that hunting over bait was illegal I saw more bucks. I would feed corn in July and August and got pictures of most of the better bucks in our area. Now I see more does and not as many bucks as everyone around feeds year-round. We’ve been planting our plots late the last few years and had to change what we could plant due to the late planting. This may also have had an effect on sightings, as well.

• I don’t hunt over bait but do hunt on organic vegetable farms in Newton County, which is essentially a food plot.

• I have used corn a few times for myself but mostly like to hunt without bait. I use it for my two grandsons and one granddaughter.

• I don’t use bait. I hunt the old way.

• It has really enhanced deer sightings on our property.

• Baiting brings in a lot of bears and decreases deer presence.

• Owner will not let us bait.

• I believe my neighbors are putting out more bait than I am, drawing the deer off of my property. I’d like to see baiting prohibited. I also believe there is a direct correlation with baiting and the decline of turkeys.

• We have food plots and feed a lot of corn. It has improved our hunting tremendously. The down side is it also attracts the hogs.

• I’m afraid we have hurt ourselves unintentionally with the turkey population by baiting deer. There has been a tremendous increase in the raccoon population. Since they are nest raiders and no one traps anymore, it will just continue to hurt the turkey population.

• The quality of the deer has improved. I believe they are bigger and heavier.

• Quality hasn’t changed. The big bucks don’t seem to come to the feeders.

• I maintain a gravity feeder in hope to attract does and then bucks. Seems to be working.

• I still have mixed feelings on the legalization of feeding/baiting. My hunting has improved due to me spending more money to do so. However, if you don’t feed, the deer seem to migrate to the neighboring properties where the feed is available. So in actuality, it’s now more a necessity than a choice. The bigger concern for me is the all dreaded acronym “CWD” that is suspected to be a cause for the disease. If not a cause, at least a carrier, due to multiple deer feeding at the same station. I don’t know of anyone that’s a hunter who isn’t concerned with this issue.

• Mostly does and small bucks seen during daylight hours. Mature bucks mostly caught on cameras at night even during the rut.

• I still plant food plots.

• I would say improved but having out feed has never guaranteed deer opportunities in the least. I’ve seen way more deer avoiding feed. It’s all related to what’s available for feed, especially early season when all the ag is still out, it’s not effective for me anyway. I like having the option. I don’t see any issue with that at all.

• More deer sightings and opportunities at mature deer.

• Seems like it changes from year to year. I do believe it makes them more nocturnal since they don’t need to work too hard for food.

• I don’t bait but neighbors do. My focus is on habitat management. Timber stand improvement, fire, etc.

• Eliminate hunting over bait. Takes away from the hunting experience. Pour out corn, sit in the stand and wait.

• Yes it has helped, with us feeding corn with protein pellets during the offseason plus keeping our feeders going during the season.

• Deer seem healthy because they have something to eat even when there is no natural food.

• The number of deer seen has increased, as well as the size of the deer (body weight and antler). It seems we are seeing more does with multiple fawns as well.

• Declined, because my neighbor is hunting over feed and I don’t do that!

• Deer are using the feeders at night and do not have to venture very far for food; therefore less deer sightings. Secondly, fair chase hunting is now gone. I believe that legalized baiting is pathetic and do now know of one reason to justify it. Our forefathers would he appalled.

• I hunt public land so no baiting allowed on my spots. I have successfully hunted deer that were staging on the public side of the property line, waiting for dark to go hit the feeder that the neighbor has set up just over the line.

• I feel baiting should either be banned or allowed both on public and private land.

• It has improved with deer sightings and made it easier to manage does.

• We utilize spinner feeders and food plots.

• Noticed an increase in population. Feeding helps fawns survive harsh winters and keeps them healthy to escape predators.

• I have not noticed a change in the quality of my deer hunting.

• Feeding the deer is a great tool if you can afford it. It seems that everybody is feeding them. I shot four deer this year, and they all were full of corn from feeding prior to reaching me. There are a lot of homeowners feeding deer.

• I don’t need to hunt over bait.

• I don’t hunt on bait stations. I hunt travel corridors going to my bait stations.

• We are able to see more deer and get a better understanding of our herd.

• We can keep feeders going year-round and supply food and nutrients.

• I hunt acorns and then I hunt where I know the does are. Corn seems like it makes my lease hunters lazy.

• It’s different, but I wouldn’t say better or worse

• Baiting has drastically increased the number of feral pigs we encounter.

• Declined. Less movement by deer overall on property, more concentrated movement at a feeder, but most bucks seem to be more nocturnal.

• Kids growing up today won’t know how to hunt deer without the use of corn.

• I see a lot more deer now than before.

• Improved for deer in general but a negative for mature bucks (3.5 and older).

• While I have saw an increase in population and antler size, deer seem to mainly come to bait when traditional food sources have expired (acorns, browse, etc.).

• It might help in a county that has little to no national-forest land. But in other counties with a lot of national-forest land, I think it hurts. Since you could bait, does in my area can not be taken on national-forest land.

• I think the doe limit should be cut in half from 10 to five.

• See more and let’s us know there are big ones out there and which stands to go to.

• Baiting only helps get the younger does to come to food/bait during hunting hours.

• Food plots just make the deer nocturnal. With the ability to feed, we can time the feeding and the location of the deer.

• Seeing better bucks but not more deer.

• Deer hunting over feed should be illegal! Quality of bucks harvested has declined due to people shooting inferior/young bucks over feed, reducing the amount of bucks making it to maturity.

• I don’t hunt over bait, corn or even my clover fields. That’s not HUNTING!

• You see more deer using feed, but you don’t usually kill a mature buck over feed.

• We don’t bother spreading corn. Hogs consume it immediately.

• Since baiting year-round, we have more deer staying on our property during hunting season.

• I’m not sure the quality has improved, but it has made it easier to attract deer to my small piece of land.

• Probably have more deer hang around with feeding deer.

• Baiting is not hunting. It’s only shooting.

• Being consistent with putting out the feed increased the activity of deer in those areas.

• Baiting needs to go away due to CWD.

• Everyone was baiting before anyway, lol.

• I plant big plots so it really hasn’t changed.

• We seem to see more deer hunting over bait but not the big ones we anticipated seeing.

• Too many people feeding deer. Does have become pets. This is NOT quality game hunting.

• No change. I have tried with and without hunting over feed and the only difference I find is I feed a lot of turkeys, squirrels and does. I seldom see a buck over my bait. I feel my efforts on feeders is wasted. I do not like feeders because it attracts coyotes and adds to the doe kill. Any permanent form of bait attracts both victims and predators.                                                                  

• I don’t have a problem with other people hunting over bait, but I don’t do it. To me it is kind of like cheating. I could not be proud of my trophy getting it that way.

• As far as hunting over bait, I think it has improved my hunting or the combination of cell cameras and corn has improved my hunting. I rarely hunt right over a feeder unless doe hunting, but I do use several feeders and several cell cameras to determine my hunting location for when I’m hunting.

• Food plots enhance feeding.

• Our hunting season’s have greatly improved since baiting became legal.

• I have been able to provide supplemental feed for the deer. This seems helpful in cases where dry weather and competition from hogs limits natural food and makes food plots less successful. I have never actually shot a deer at a feeder.

• I HATE BAITING. Take it away—please.  I think it robs us of the whole intent of hunting. That is all I have to say about that.

Misc. Comments

Stop managing deer on a statewide basis. Georgia has too many different topographies.

• Thank you for doing a great job, much appreciated!

• I really enjoy the GON magazine, plus meeting a lot of you guys back when I was in the Truck-Buck Shoot-Out in 2018 was a memory will never be lost! God bless for all you do for the hunters and fishermen of our great state.

• Extend bow season to Jan. 31 in all of metro Atlanta.

• Lack of quality deer processors.

• I’d like to see deer season end on Jan. 1 in zones with a peak rut last of October or first week of November. This would reduce the stress on the deer herd post rut.

• Eliminate the doe-only dates and make them available all season for rifle.

• Concerned about turkey numbers, like lots of folks are. Willing to have a bag limit of one per season to help populations going forward.

• I think the deer season is too long and limits are too high. Start Oct. 1 and end Jan. 1. This would give folks a little more time to hunt small game.

• I wish they would terminate dog hunting.

• Limit the number of poles that can be trolled per person to three.

• I’m fortunate that I live and hunt in Georgia and subscribe to GON.

• We need three buck tags and five doe tags. Buck tags need to be any size.

• I’d like to see the earlier turkey season come back. I’d also like to see a fall turkey season. They are way overpopulated from what I see. We should at least allow an archery fall season that coincides with deer hunting. I think they should shorten gun season and extend archery. I also think crossbows should have their own short season. I get they bring in hunters and have a role. But nobody who is being honest can equate crossbows with vertical bows and be taken seriously.

• Lost my property in Fulton County because they sold it in the middle of the season so that made for a bad season.

• Develop a program to help landowners control coyotes. They are not indigenous to Georgia and should be controlled since they prey on games such as turkey, quail, rabbits and deer.

• I’m not sure we are charging enough for out-of-state hunting license. We are losing more leases each year to Florida hunters around where I hunt.

• Deer season should be extended statewide.

• I hunt mostly in Haralson County on the Alabama state line. The majority of our does appear to come into estrus around the Jan. 1. It would be nice if properties close to Alabama were able to extend their season to the end of January.

• We need to shoot more coyotes and pigs.

• Something needs to be done about the flathead catfish. They are ruining the fishing on the river systems they have invaded.  DNR can’t control them alone. The public needs to be allowed shock and remove them because simply fishing for them will never work!

• We need more coyote and hog control supported by the state.

• In a traditional sense it’s not really hunting now. Food plots, shooting shacks, trail cameras, all have changed it. What people call hunting, I call harvesting.

• I have properties in four counties and only get two buck tags for the year. I wish there was a better way to allocate tags for those who own land and lease multiple tracks of land. Never fails I have to pass mature bucks on land I pay for because I don’t want to tag out and have a monster show up later.

• Since the removal of approximately 40 hogs on our 1,000-acre lease, our turkey population has exploded.

• Please change the doe days in north Georgia back to where they were. Buck only for the first two weeks of rifle season.

• I wish that I could get more help from the Georgia residents and out-of-state hunters to help us with our massive coyote population.

• Concern for CWD! We must find a cure!  I will stop hunting once the disease arrives in my area!

• It’s hard to find land. Florida hunters lease it all. Georgia needs to raise non-resident licence prices.

• Deer season should end on Jan. 1 or earlier.

• Has any research been done on the effects of baiting as far as making the deer more nocturnal? Keep up the  great work.

• Rut timing in southeast Georgia seems to be wildly inconsistent. Chasing begins early in October and rut is full swing by November, and it doesn’t seem to stop until mid January.

• Keep up the good work. I am a long-time subscriber and always will be!

• I wish they would make the whole state QDM.

• Our state DNR in charge of the deer management and turkey management needs to get their nose out of the data and think outside the box. They are totally reactive and not proactive. The many generations before them that took risk and introduced the game and genetics were well ahead of today’s team. They can help the deer genetics and re-establish the healthy turkey populations of the good ol’ days as they have way more money and technology but seem to just keep on doing the same things over and over and just saying let’s look at the data and research. Act like it is a business and make some decisions and think outside the box before hunting as we knew no longer exist. Create some data off new experiments that have teeth and don’t take decades to see results. We are not getting any younger.

• Thanks GON for all that you do! I grew up reading them and look forward to getting my next issue every month!

• Reduce number of does to be harvested and require hunters to take quality bucks only, so they will have a chance to grow.

• I wish the DNR would allow more hunting access on WMAs. As the years go by, more and more people are losing access to lands they hunt. With DNR only allowing a select few dates to hunt public properties, there will be more and more people not able to enjoy hunting.

• Make bow season longer, shorten gun season.

• Seems a lot of people coming to Whitfield County who do not pay attention to the daily or season limits when it comes to fishing and hunting.

• Worried about CWD in Georgia.

• Need to reduce the number of does killed and reduce deer and bear dog hunting days.

• Well I will continue on comments from an earlier question and say I would like to see a change in Meriwether regulations where someone 16 and younger could harvest a deer with less than 4 points on one side. It’s important to keep the youth interested and telling them they can’t harvest quality animals is disappointing.

• As far as deer hunting, we as a whole are not doing our part in harvesting does. Everyone seems to trophy hunt, and I beg people to come shoot does.

• I wish we could afford a trapper. We have killed several hogs and coyotes. We are just some southwest Georgia rednecks enjoying God’s creation.

• Open all WMAs to archery hunting whenever there is not a gun hunt going on.

• Please try to expand public hunting land and quality.

• Start season later and let it be rifle through the end of January. Bring back an October dove season.

• GA needs to move away from any inside/outside spread requirements. Go to a minimum points on a side requirement.

• Is it time to think about lowering the harvest to one buck and five does?  I don’t know anyone who shoots five does so don’t know that it would matter. If you lower the buck limit, people would be a little more selective in shooting that first buck. I usually take one or two deer a season.

• Would like to see more food plots on public land in northeast Georgia.

• I think the approach that the forestry industry in Georgia has when it comes to cutting hardwoods all the way to the creek edge then replanting entirely in pines has more to do with the decline in turkeys than any other factor. Turkeys need turkey habitat, 100% pine tree stands are not turkey habitat. Until someone enforces hardwood buffer zones being left to stand, I don’t think we will see increased turkey population growth.

• I dove hunted on private land for the first time this year, which was a lot of fun. I also hunted small game (squirrel) on public land (also with the hopes of harvesting hogs) and participated in the annual hog hunt on Cumberland Island.

• I’d like to see out-of-state fees increase to be more in line with other states charge for out-of-state licenses.  I really wouldn’t mind seeing the “old fashioned deer tag” come back around. Lots of people are still “skirting” the Game Check… killing too many deer and way too many bucks.  I have a cormorant problem… am I the only one in the state? They are eating my fish and contaminating the water with fecal matter.

• Turkey hunting in my area has gone way down. I’m not sure how to fix the problem. I feel that loss of habitat and predators or the main issues. Once again you can’t stop people from cutting their trees, I would like to see the predator issue addressed. However, I’m not sure how to go about doing that.

• Reduce the number of deer that are allowed to be killed so you see more deer while hunting.

• I think one gobbler per person per season for now is plenty, and I am glad the season starts later in the year.

• Why do you think there are less deer processing centers?

• Nothing, I like the Georgia rules and regulations!

• Something has got to be done about the wild turkeys in Georgia. There are no birds left in three pieces of land in three counties I hunt.

• More state-funded accessible hunting opportunities, specifically for wheelchair accessibility. Many of the people in need also require full-time assistance, dressing for the hunt or inclement weathered conditions with a full-time guide to assist in getting to the hunting spot and assistance with holding/shooting the gun and game retrieval.

• I love GON!

• Need to go back to crossbows only allowed with folks with a doctor’s documented excuse, etc.

• Georgia should reduce the number of tags.

• The regulation that describes an antlered deer needs to be changed. It should be anything more than 3 inches above the hairline be considered a antlered deer instead of anything above the hairline which would be impossible to determine unless his breathing is fogging your eye glasses.

GON should include records for bucks killed with handguns, like is done for rifles, muzzleloader, bow and crossbow.

• Focus on all election including you local ones this year. Extremely important to be informed for both outdoors and your overall livelihood.

• I hunt in Hancock County and feel that the 4-points on one side leads to a lot of young 8-points being shot just because they meet the QDM requirement.

• Wild hogs are becoming a problem in Talbot County.

• I’ve seen more deer overall.

• Out-of-state licenses fees should be dropped to encourage more hunting traditions within the family continue.

• The season needs to start later, and the bag limit needs to go back to five deer.

• Reduce the limit.

• First time hunting in Georgia. Rules were not clear until I reread everything a couple of times. Gun ranges/sighting areas are confusing on who manages them and how to access them.

• I hunt national forest land in Habersham County. If you can’t kill does on national forest, you shouldn’t be able to kill them on private. With the amount of national forest land to private, more than likely they coming from national forest. Baiting on private is hurting the population on the national forest. I think in my county they should limit the number of does you can kill on private until the herd population returns. I know this is not the case in all counties but in the northeast counties that have a high national forest acres, and something should be done differently. I also believe inflation has a lot to do with the number of deer people take. Can’t afford meat so kill a few more deer. I was thinking about writing a story on this and sending it to you.

• BAN HUNTING DEER OVER FEED!!! Crossbows should not be legal during archery season. Not sure who will be reviewing these, but if you want quality bucks, I propose archery season stays the same but only allow one week of shotgun season and one week of muzzleloader. We’ve got the cropland and woods to grow true giants but the FEDS have to do their job in lawmaking to make hunting a sport rather than a lackadaisical adventure.

• I wish we had more historical data on the dates of the rut.

• Would really like to have a three-buck tag harvest and a three-doe tag system implemented.

• I wish they would lower the age for senior hunts to 62 years old. I’m 63 now and not sure how many more years I will be able to hunt. I have heart failure, but I don’t qualify for disability. It would be nice to get to hunt some of the early season hunts before it gets real cold. Also I would like to see more primitive-weapons hunts on WMAs in Region 2 during the primitive-weapons season. Most of them in Region 2 are in mid to late December and not during the regular season.

• I’d like to see an option on being able to purchase an extra buck tag in Georgia. Or if a family member doesn’t use their buck tag, then maybe change the rules that someone else could use them, especially if a license is purchased that doesn’t get used, maybe let someone else get the use out of it.

• Decline in hunting habitat.

• Really wish we could decrease number of rifle days and move them out of the rut. If we really want to see buck quality increase in the state, that must happen and also return to crossbows only being used by disabled hunters. Those two reasons alone will keep Georgia from being a better big-buck state.

• Killum and Grillum. Go Dawgs.

• I hope the DNR continues to focus on efforts to restore the turkey population.

• As deer numbers are so high, we really need to urge the hunting industry in Georgia to increase options for donating venison to local food pantries, etc. We could really improve deer management by thinning out some more does, but many folks don’t have the freezer space for many deer. Also, the car insurance companies need to consider dropping rates for folks who shoot several deer. Any autobody shop is slammed with business from run-ins with deer during late November.

• Need more public hunting land.

• Would like to see a late muzzleloader season for antlerless deer in January.

• Hunting in Georgia is great. DNR, keep up good work.

GON rocks!

• How do you hunt ducks on private land, small scale? We have a few creeks and beaverponds but I’ve never hunted ducks.

• Glynn and Camden counties do not have a shortage of turkeys. Every day at my six feeders this season was 30 to 40 turkeys gobbling up corn, with 20 of them jakes  and gobblers. Got way too many hogs this year also timber and hardwood swamps is being cut. I’m worried about the turkey  and deer declines going forward because of timber companies spraying the woods to kill everything  other than pine trees. In Glynn County they used  a helicopter and sprayed every old  oak tree on a property. They sprayed with tractors, targeting every hardwood tree and are cutting them out of swamps. Greed for money. Will not have anything left for wildlife to eat but pine straw. Thank you at GON for a great service and magazine and for all you do for us.

• We have a wild hog problem on most of our land in Macon County.

• While deer hunting is definitely better now in Fannin County versus the past, I would like to see firearms either-sex days spread out a little more than in just one stretch and it’s over with. I would also love to see some kind of efforts put into trying to restore grouse populations. I also would like to see an effort to increase the quality of trout fishing here. I would rate the level of trout fishing here to be fair to even poor in some places compared to past decades. I think trout fishing here would benefit from bringing back a trout season to most fisheries and maybe some size limits and lower creel limits in certain cases. I believe also that maybe it’s time for sportsmen in Georgia to have some conversations about CWD and what can be done to mitigate it’s spread to Georgia. Even if it means a ban statewide on baiting. It seems to me that it would be much easier to put rules in place now to counteract the spread of CWD than to try to deal with it once it’s already here? Overall I think the DNR does a great job here in the state though, and my hats off to them because I feel they have done a lot with what is sometimes a pretty limited budget and manpower. Also I would like to say thanks for GON for keeping sportsmen in Georgia up to date about outdoor news!

• Need longer season.

• Turkey population appears to be declining in Taylor County over last couple of years.

• Still not OK with the shortened turkey season. Gobbling is mostly over by new start date. I have trail-cam photos of over 24 hens in food plots as well as groups of four and five gobblers with beards over 10 inches. Not all areas of state are having turkey issues and to penalize those of us with good populations who like to hunt a gobbling turkey is not right, as one size does not fit all.

• I only hunt public land. Would be nice if the state could open more camping places on WMAs because  of how far I have to drive to get to a lot of the areas.

• Too many doe days. In a couple of years you’re going to hear folks ask where are all of the deer.

• I do NOT like the idea of electric bikes on WMAs and do NOT like baiting/corn.

• Hunting over feed is unsportsmanlike. Too many hunters with no experience.

• The extended archery season in southwest Georgia should be gun.

• I believe crossbows should not be included in bow season except for  someone with a disability. Using crossbows in bow season eliminates mature bucks before breeding season.

• Had a great season, saw a lot of deer, more than I’ve seen in the last three years. Was able to take a nice 6-point with my muzzleloader. I also took a good 8-point with modern firearm.

• Need to control coyotes!

• Deer season doesn’t need to start until mid October and run through the end of January and only needs a few doe days.

• I wish Georgia would restructure the creel limit for our black bass species. I wish we could reduce our five-fish limit and go to a 15-inch limit on largemouth and smallmouth bass, with a 14-inch, five-fish limit on spotted bass. Georgia has the potential to a super bass fishery, if we adjust how many fish are killed annually!

• Did not see any signs of scrapes until middle of December. I am not sure about the breeding season here in Baldwin County.

• Statewide quality buck regulations. Youth can be excluded.

• Wish that they would change the antler restrictions in Harris County to help harvest cull bucks and cripples.

• Lucky to be in great state that values sportsmen.

• Doe season should not open early season. Fawns are still nursing in early October.  Doe season should not open until mid or late November.

• I’d like to see an article on hunter harassment in Georgia and see how others have dealt with this. Unfortunately, I had the misfortune of dealing with this during rifle season.

• Need to extend days to hunt on WMAs.

• Concerned about CWD and its impact on our natural resource.

• Would love to see an expanded bear season in middle Georgia. More counties and more days. Turkeys are gradually making a comeback.

• Hunted for last 50 years, being able to lease land or get into a club is being priced out of reach for most hunters.

• Happy hunting!

• Growing concern about CWD getting closer to Georgia deer. What are we doing to keep these out?

Consider QDMA practices statewide. Georgia is attracting more hunters based on the quality deer we have to offer. QDMA would help grow the sport in the state and increase revenue while teaching sportsmen how to be disciplined in the woods. This would also promote an environment that would facilitate higher quality deer for all to enjoy.

• Continue the fine job y’all are doing.

• Need to have more regulations on bucks that can be taken.

• I am concerned about the issue about fishing rights and landowner rights. Why can’t people just get along?

• Lots of new construction, new homes, less land. Loss of habitat is concerning.

• Supplemental feeding should be aloud on public land. I hunt WMAs exclusively. Even before baiting was allowed, I learned where landowners and clubs were baiting and patterning the deer around routes in and out of public land. Since baiting/supplemental feeding started, deer have become bigger and healthier.

• How many trees will the state let timber companies cut before they make them stop?

• Need deer season shortened. Small-game hunting is becoming extinct. This is how most of the older hunters got their start. Wonder why hunter numbers are decreasing?

• I’m very happy with the season and regulations.

• Not enough enforcement for illegal hunting, poaching and trespassing.

• Something needs to be done about coyotes.

• I like going back to either-sex on opening day of rifle season. I feel it takes some pressure off shooting bucks.

• I have hunted deer in Georgia for 30-plus years. I thought that the Georgia hunting rules prohibit any electronic devices that aid in the harvesting of deer. Cellular trail cameras have ruined deer hunting in Georgia and across the country. When you can have real-time and on-demand videos and pics of areas while you are in a hunting situation it represents an unfair advantage for hunters and should no longer be allowed. Go back to the basics: scout, find sign, hunt over sign whether it is a natural food source and/or deer activity, put in your time, harvest a mature buck and not one that you have named from your cellular trail cameras.

• I would really like for the legislature to adopt the same law as Florida for blaze orange. It’s not required on private land but always required on public land. It is of no value on the land which I hunt, as I know who is there and when. I don’t buy $300 worth of the latest camo to look like a road worker in the woods.

• Bear hunting in Twiggs, Bibb, Houston and Bleckley. They should have a lottery drawing for bear in these counties so DNR can reach their quota. Then the hunter should be able to hunt bear during any open deer season like the rest of state. You could be more selective when hunting, and less sows would be shot if that is the goal. Right now bear hunting in late December or early January for one day is a joke.

• Season limit should be two bucks and three does. Too many small bucks are mistaken for does.

• I’m thankful for our long deer hunting season and our two-buck limit.

• Lower doe harvest.

• Georgia is a great hunting/fishing state. Thanks to you GON for what you do. I’ve been a subscriber since early 90s.

• DNR needs to leave turkey season alone. Changing opening day has affected the turkey hunting negatively in Hancock county, in my opinion.

• Appreciate the extension of deer season in southwest Georgia. Recommended extension include harvest by rifle.

• I am very concerned about the “navigable waters” issue, and the effect it may have on the ability to fish Georgia’s rivers and streams.

• I like that fact that one buck has to have 4 points on one side but now would like if both buck had 4 points on one side for hunters over 16 years old while under 16 could still shoot one smaller buck if they wanted.

• It would be nice if the state would have an extended archery only season for a couple weeks after rifle ends.

• Shorten the deer season please. This alone might just let a few more bucks reach maturity. It will also give us locals who live in remote areas a break from rude, irresponsible hunters from metro areas.

• Quit cutting all the timber in Wilkes County!

• Deer season is too long. I can’t get in the woods to small-game hunt.

• We need more turkeys in more areas of the state.

• Keep regulations in place for hunting deer.

• I wish that firearms season came in a little earlier or lasted a little longer.

• Deer season too long. Way too many doe days.

• I would like to see more hunting and fishing opportunities for people with disabilities in Georgia.

• I am not sure how to control this, but many hunters I have heard of are killing more than two bucks. Can processors do a better job of checking the deer tags to be sure the bucks are not over the limit?

• What’s going on with the Georgia turkey population?

• Overall good season.  Thank y’all for everything you do.

• Coyotes and HOGS are a real problem in Quitman County. Cannot sit without seeing hogs.

• Have not let an arrow fly or a bullet down range. Have some neighbors who are shooting too many small deer.

• I wonder how difficult it would be to fund annual trapping each year on public land where there are turkey populations. If the predators had a heavy culling right before turkey season, surely there would be more poults surviving to adulthood.

• I hope WRD continues to do excellent work for Georgia, and I hope GON continues to put out a good product. Deer seasons ebb and flow. The future of deer hunting in Georgia is solid.

• Can’t wait to start fishing warmer weather.

• Allow bowhunting to the end of January in Randolph and Calhoun counties.

• Georgia is and always will be a sportsman’s paradise. Thanks for give us all a chance to have a voice.

• Too many does killed by neighbors.

• The deer hunting firearms season for southwestern Georgia should come in later in October.

• We need more deer processors.

• Need to be able to hunt until the end of January with guns.

• Might need to reduce number of deer that can be taken in some areas.

• Just stop the baiting in the state of Georgia so we don’t jeopardize our deer to CWD.

• I’ve enjoyed GON since the beginning, and I look forward to many future issues! Keep up the good work, and many thanks!

• Turkey changes are not helping. Cedar Creek is worse now but was still good when the new regs started there.

• Would love to see a weekend turkey hunt just prior to the holidays.

• Too many either-sex days in Franklin County.

• One buck per year minimum with 4 points on one side or a 15-inch minimum.

• I really appreciate the GON recognition of successful hunting in Georgia. Especially love seeing the women and children successful.

• Love everything about GON. Look forward to reading every issue.

• Many more owls on the property.

• I believe they should cut doe tag from 10 to five.

• The forest service needs to resume timber sales in north Georgia!

• I hit a 6-pointer that did almost $10,000 damage to my SUV.  I wish more people, especially in the suburbs, allowed people to bowhunt.

• I have notice a slight increase in deer numbers, and the local population seems to be in good shape.

• Too much development in Gwinnett County.

• We need a new law preventing folks from keeping brown trout, especially in the Chattahoochee River where they are known to be reproducing. Why permit keeping wild browns when our tax dollars pay for rainbows? You could reach a ticket quota real fast with the amount of folks keeping browns, its sad!

• Turkey hunting in Georgia is not getting any better, it seems like it’s getting worse and worse each year that goes by. Does DNR plan to incorporate any release programs to release more mature turkeys into our areas to help to reestablish their populations where there’s been a decline?

• Overall, I am happy with both fishing and hunting in Georgia and do not have any major concerns.

• Reduce buck quota to one per year. We will have more bucks, and we will grow bigger bucks. Encourage doe management.

• I pray that we can continue to keep the right to hunt and fish.

• Saw lot of deer killed on the roads because everyone is feeding them in their yards.

• Georgia has exceptional hunting opportunities on both private and state wildlife areas.

• Either-sex archery needs to come back to Chattahoochee National Forest east of 1-75. The impact would not hurt the deer numbers.

• Our hunting was very good. The only downside to my hunting season is that our property is threatened by development. Our rural property is not so rural anymore.

• It would be nice if the state could provide recommendations for how hunters can improve the herd. Info on food-plot effectiveness, doe management, etc.

• Wished the state would do something about the current problem with the hog population.

• Extended archery season throughout Georgia instead of select counties. Stop doe hunting after Dec. 15 since many does have been bred by then. Also reduce the amount of deer taken to six, two bucks and four does to help with the overall deer population. Ten deer per year is still too many.

• The release of more data on turkey population based on research, not just what someone thinks. Are the low limits and moving the start of season working? We implemented our own no-hunting-policy nine years ago, and it took until last year to get our numbers back like in the late 80s, early 90’s with the support of neighbors. Habitat improvement was our biggest factor I feel, aided by the almost zero hunting on almost 800 acres.

• Deer hunting has declined so much in the last decade I don’t look at Georgia as a quality state or where deer are valued. I have shifted my focus to other states who manage deer much more effectively. Our gun season is way too long. Our limits are way too high and you can do everything over bait. The overall season dates are not as much of an issue as the long gun season. I spoke with someone this season who told me they had shot 10 deer by Thanksgiving. Their dad had already shot 12 and uncle already shot 12. It takes a very large property for 34 deer to be harvested and not see an impact. Deer hunting opportunities continue to decline with our current seasons and regulations.

• Dreading the day CWD shows up in Georgia.

• Would  like GON to have a page for people who  want to lease their land for hunting. Would help those looking to lease.

• Need to stop shooting so many does in Polk County.

• We’re all pretty lucky to live in a country/state that appreciates hunters. We have a long season and a generous bag limit in Georgia. We are truly blessed!

• Would be good to see increased DNR law enforcement presence. I have only been checked by a game warden twice in 35 years and I spend a lot of time in the woods and on the water. I believe we need more wardens in the field and stiffer penalties for violators.

• Maybe there should be a law come into effect for hunting clubs acre/per person. I have one 200-acre tract in particular that has a hunting club next to it that is 160 acres and 10 members. Well that’s a lot of deer to take off of that property and surrounding properties. I would propose that any tract over 50 acres used as a hunting lease needs 25 acres per hunter. Or drop the high fence law in Georgia where we can actually manage deer!

• I believe that the current regulation for Montgomery County (4 points on one side) should be discontinued. As we have seen, it will only diminish the quality of the herd over time. All bucks do breed, and if you are leaving the bad ones, then you ultimately lose quality.

• Pleased with the deer season this year.

• There are more people interested in hunting and getting outdoors. This is great but there is a downside when hunters lack the knowledge to know a mature deer from those that do not need to be shot.

• We are having a hard time with roaming house dogs from a neighboring property owner. There isn’t a legal way for us to catch the dogs and take them to the humane society. I wish the DNR would pass a law allowing hunters to trap/catch nuisance dogs and take them to the humane society. I have called the sheriffs department, but I have no legal ability to remove the dogs from the farm I own. I have thousands of pictures of these dogs, and they run deer and other small game on my property daily. I wish there was a statewide law since there isn’t any assistance from most counties’ sheriffs offices. This is a need from the DNR to help landowners protect the game on their own property.

• Need to make licenses reciprocal with Florida. Like it or not, Florida hunters spend a bunch of money in the state.

• The legalization of hunting over bait is the only frustration I have. Just an observation but there has to be less deer being harvested, especially does due to local processors being full half of the season. I know on more than one occasion, does were not harvested on our property because it was late, maybe at the end of our weekend, and we knew the local processor was full.

• Why has the access fee at the Lake Oconee pay station changed to electronic only? Everyone does not keep a phone in their ear all the time!

• Keep up the great work, look forward to GON every month.

• I believe Georgia has a healthy deer population, but I would like to see the number of doe tags reduced. With all the WMA hunts that we have available to us, there are plenty of opportunities to get venison and for the most part a lot of hunters won’t shoot a doe.

• Would like to see gun season for deer come in earlier in October or last longer in January.

• We need to do everything possible to get the next generation involved in hunting. They are clueless!

• Please continue to educate the readers on the importance of reducing doe numbers until you get to the recommended ratio, whatever that ratio is.  I am on a lease where no one seems to take does. The ratio is AT   LEAST 6:1 and likely higher. Then they wonder why better bucks aren’t around.  Also, highlight why nest raiders need to be targeted to help turkey populations recover.

• We are believers in Mineral Rack growth nutrients.

• Keep providing opportunities for youth to get involved in outdoor activities.

• Keep up the good work and keep good ol’ common sense at the forefront of all decisions made. Thanks.

• Season is too long.

• Would love to see season open mid August like Tennessee to be able to have a chance at a velvet buck. Bucks have already shed velvet before bow season opens where I’m able to hunt.

• I think Georgia needs to implement a certain size limit on any bucks that are killed.

• I hear that soon we will be able to bait for doves. It should have always been legal in my opinion.

• Seeing a lot of deer. Most does are raising twins successfully.

• Keep fishing open in all Georgia streams.

• Georgia will not have a huntable population of many game species unless they take action on the out-of-control predator populations. I travel to turkey hunt because I no longer have access to property with huntable turkey populations.

• I feel forward-facing sonar is going to impact our lakes in the future. The limit on crappie especially needs to be addressed. If not numbers then size.

• Certain counties with less deer should have a season that limits the amount of deer that can be shot in that area.

• Keep inviting people to fish and hunt.

• Kill more raccoons… save turkeys!

• I would like to see Georgia lower the deer harvest number.

• Concern about turkey population and bag limits still too high in some areas. There should be one season opener for turkey hunting, not two.

• Reduce turkey limit to one for a few years to bring back population.

• Georgia should go to one buck with a bow and one with a firearm statewide. The season should be longer and run later.

• I would like to see boat ramps have handicap assessable docks.

• Out-of-state hunters should be picked on a lottery-based system.

• We have been hunting our leases since 1988, the best is yet to come!

• We need more doe days in Murray County!

• Increase in hogs and coyotes will deplete our game. Need trapping classes by area, plans for hog traps we could build. Offer cash for furs.

• I’m on the fence as to baiting. I feel the quality of deer hunting has decreased and the turkey population has been hurt because of baiting. With baiting the art of finding sign, figuring out natural travel patterns is decreasing for most hunters. Woodsmanship is being lost, which is a part of learning the outdoors. Just sit on a baitpile and wait, I even catch myself doing this. I also feel the turkey population decrease has been impacted by baiting if for no other reason that it appears the raccoon population is exploding. The raccoons are nest robbers and not being hunted as much as they used to be. Maybe I should just say spreading of corn heavily has changed hunting from what it was before becoming legal to hunt over. This is just my opinion.

• Doe population seems to be down in Talbot County.

• Need to get more folks interested!

• Bow season needs to be Oct. 1-31. Gun season needs to be Nov. 1-Jan. 10 due to warm weather.

• I like to see less deer being killed. Five deer should be good . I like killing two or three.

• Concerned about CWD in the Florida panhandle and would like GON to cover it more and make sure hunters know how to limit the impact in Georgia.

• Lower the doe rate!

• Hunters need to do a better effort at harvesting does prior to harvesting a buck.

• Our hunting lands are disappearing. Cities and subdivisions are expanding and big heads of timber (especially big hardwoods) are few and far between. I know that my children will never have the opportunities to roam and hunt that I did as a child. That breaks my heart. Hunting is becoming more of a competition than a fellowship.

• Wish we could get the turkey population back.

• Hogs are a problem in Oglethorpe County and hunting and trapping not showing to being a solution. I believe we have more hogs on our property than deer.

• Dove hunters who do not pick up their hulls should be  fined. I usually pick up a plastic bag of spent hulls on WMAs by the second day.

• Some regions of Georgia are experiencing some impact­—in terms of dead deer, added stress, etc. on the deer herd from coyotes. Have trail camera images of coyotes with deer legs (before deer season opened) in their mouth, have video of coyotes actively attacking a mature doe, find dead fawn remains—presumably from a predator kill. Be very interested in science based “impact study” of predators on our deer herds.

• The limit of 12 deer per hunter is insane and needs to be lowered!

• Could the state propose a WMA license to increase funds for DNR? Over 50% of my time is spent hunting public land in north Georgia. I would be willing to buy a special WMA license to hunt public land, if it would help increase funding for DNR and allow more active monitoring of public land. The entire season this year I was never checked for license, etc. Also, could the printed license be realigned at the bottom (Turkey Harvest Record) to allow proper folding? Also, the WMA electronic sign-in is messed up. Someone tried to improve something that wasn’t broken. I am now signed in for several WMAs thru 2099 and can not change it. I know this is a topic of concern, due to other conversations on forums.

• I hope we keep up the good fight to promote hunting and the outdoors in a positive way. We are in a war against culture change, social media and just evil. We need more positive role models and involvement to keep this thing we love going.

• I would sure love and appreciate it if things like dead trees in or near to a campsite that could do serious damage to people and/or property be taken care of. Also, some of the campgrounds have a terrible mudhole/muddy surface where tents and vehicles both have to be, which could be some 80% or so improved with just gravel. Oaky Woods is the worst one I’ve gone to, but we go to at least a couple hunts a year, as a rule. I’m not complaining but do feel that these two things are getting critical. Also, B.F. Grant’s campground has a bad top-soil mud problem. When first entering the road into the camp, it’s good, but as you enter the camp the road gets pretty bad, pretty quick, as you go in, and gets nasty during and after a good rain or shower. It also has a massive dead tree on the left side coming into camp toward the back.

• I wished deer season would close on the last weekend of Dec./Jan 1 so those of us who small-game hunt with dogs would have a longer time to hunt.

• Sumer County needs to have the 15-inch rule for bucks.

• I appreciate and enjoy all the public-land hunting opportunities in Georgia. Love the WMA and quota WMA system.

Love reading GON articles.

• There needs to be statewide effort to reduce coyotes. Also need statewide size restrictions on bucks taken

• Former trapper here; What are trappers doing with raccoon hides? Have read articles in various publications promoting trapping raccoons, since they are known to take turkey eggs. Is there is a market for the hides? Few years back when I last trapped, no buyers wanted them in south Georgia. Just curious.

• Duck season starts too early in Georgia.

• Allow baiting for bear in the Northern Zone, they have become a nuisance.

• More roads are being closed on WMA and national forests that needs to remain open.

• We need a bounty on wild pigs! We have to come up with something!

• CWD is a big concern. Can’t help wondering if it is already in Georgia.

• Need to have more either-sex days on WMA hunts.

• Every state with better deer hunting has a short gun season. Gun season is too long. The deer are scared to death after three months of pressure.

• I think the DNR made a mistake opening turkey season in April.

• I think there needs to be a fall turkey hunt since turkeys appear to be coming back strong in the state.

• Too many doe days on Redlands WMA.

• We should have statewide trophy management policy and make baiting illegal, not just to improve hunting but to reduce spread for CWD and similar diseases.

• Need more does shot statewide. Need to earn a buck by shooting and registering two does before DNR sends you a buck tag.

• Shorten rifle season, extend archery only and lengthen muzzleloader.

• I feel harvest limit is too high. The rule on our farm is one buck and two does per member per year. Every coyote seen needs to be killed.

• We have 12 tags in Georgia and I’ll bet you 75 to 80%of those tags are not being used properly! We need a tag like we used to have years ago where it stays on a carcass after harvest. We need increased doe harvest and only a short gun season for buck harvest.

• Hunter Roop is awesome! He has provided great information to the Lanier Striper Club over the years and is well regarded among the club members. Thank you!

• Thanks for what GON does.

• Would like to see Hancock County antler restrictions be lifted.

• I would like a true short muzzleloader season. Flint or percussion, no inlines for first few days of season.

Handgun category for truck buck.

• More does need to be harvested.

• Wish Georgia would consider a fall turkey season. Seeing a lot of large birds not seen in the spring.

• Really appreciate GON coverage of my favorite hobby. Keep up the great work!

• The reason we do not have turkeys/deer is because coyotes and hogs. We need to kill the coyotes and poison the hogs!

• Enjoy having a lifetime license for hunting and fishing. I have hunted for over 50 years as I have lived in Georgia my entire life.

• I would really like to see electronic calls legalized for hunting raccoons.

• Declined. We now hunt feed, and it has cost us lots of money that we should be spending elsewhere.

• Trophy restrictions statewide instead of certain counties. Shorten deer season to end the first Sunday in January. Some bucks are being harvested that have already shed their antlers.

• I have had the same property for 36 years, never had many problems with theft and trespassing until last couple years. We need much stiffer penalties for both. Hogs have become a huge problem, would like to see a program like the Coyote

• Need a longer season.

• I hope that DNR keeps the Georgia rivers accessible to fish from a boat.

• Do away with baiting and cameras, go back real hunting.

• Would like to see a breakdown list of deer coolers that process, alligators hogs and take donations for the state hunger program.

• Appreciate what GON has done for Georgia all these years!

• I would like to see buck-only hunting from Nov. 1 until Thanksgiving.  Obviously this is the rut.  The problem is that people shooting does fill up the processors. For those of us who take a mature buck during the rut, we have nowhere to take them to be processed.

• Increase antler size and decrease doe harvest.

• There is no need in having 12 tags for deer and people trying to kill all they can just to kill. If the turkey bag limit can change, then deer can be changed to. Make the whole state be QDM and maybe we can raise some better deer. Only have it to where the kids can take smaller deer.

• Reduced the number of doe kills. Way too many.

• Wish there were changes to improve quality buck management.

• So much corn in woods that it’s improving the health and numbers of coons and hogs, which are hurting turkey numbers.

• Set a distance from the property line that you can put a stand, I have neighbors who put stands 10 feet off my property line!

• Think we need a one-buck limit.

• I feel like Georgia DNR does a great job and the wardens should have pay on par with other law enforcement!

• We need to be able to take does the whole gun season in northeast Georgia as we are seeing about 15 to 1 ratio of does to bucks.

• People were hunting WMA quota  hunts that didn’t get picked.

• GON Rocks!

• Expert habitat advice improvements from the DNR would be huge. Advice to include year-round food plot could be important. Coyote reduction by DNR managed and encouraged by DNR. On site DNR consulting.

• Hogs, coyotes and alligators are completely out of control in Bibb County. Something must be done to deplete and eradicate their population boom.

• I wish my county would go to antler restrictions on bucks. Those counties that are currently on antler restrictions are growing trophies.

• State need to work a lot harder to reintroduce turkeys. I can’t believe they did it in the old days with almost nothing. Do you think with modern technology at their disposal they could fix the turkey decline fairly easy? Apparently they just don’t want to sit on their hands and do nothing. The government at work.

• Need longer deer season. Bow season should start earlier.

• Need to go to one-buck limit per year.

• Provide more bowhunting opportunities on WMAs.

• Extending the season through the end of January should be considered by the GA DNR. We see (as do many neighboring properties around Macon County) significant late/second rut activity well into December and early January. This would offer more opportunity during colder periods and would always include the MLK holiday, allowing for many youth to get in one last long weekend hunt.

• Wish they would make all WMAs open to archery hunting the entire deer season.

• Georgia is a state that is blessed with an abundance of hunting opportunities, below average license fees and very liberal bag limits. Grateful to know our deer herd is healthy and improving in almost every region of the state.

• Primarily hunt on public lands and would like to see more archery opportunities throughout the season in Georgia similar to a lot of Midwest states that have archery season in October into November. Shorter gun season would be nice, also.

• I personally think the 12 deer limit per hunter is unsustainable for the herd. I do like the doe days all season long, but I think the limit should be five deer, two bucks and three does per hunter.

• I have not been able to hunt out of state for the past three years, but I am going hog hunting in January in Florida.

• I’d like to see QDM for Appling County and a surrounding counties—8-points or better.

• I would love to see Tattnall County have some restrictions on shooting small bucks, allowing them time to get a couple of years more on our current average age class.

• Like the season dates and limits.

• Adding another week to the muzzleloader season would be great.

• Cost of leases going to eventually allow only the wealthy to afford it.

• Need major help with pig control. They are taking over our property in Twiggs County.

• Due to overpopulation in areas, season needs to be extended to try and help control numbers. Deer in our area have become a nuisance due to overpopulation and causing excessive crop damage. Something definitely needs to be done to get the population back in check.

• In north Georgia on the national forest, when will they allow does to be harvested again? I’m seeing a lot of does in groups in Gilmer County.

• When is the Lord coming?

• No doe tags needed, only a harvest report.

• Better protection of jake turkeys in Effingham County.

• Give out-of-state hunters over 65 a free license.

• Either sex needs to be all season in Habersham County.

• WMAs should be open to hunting the same dates as private land.

• I think Georgia rule makers are doing a terrible job in maintaining the regulations.  I’m not impressed with the rangers, as well. It’s almost as if the state belongs to a few. But who cares?

• Harvest limits should be decided county by county based on deer population.

• Coyotes and wild  hogs are problems in Johnson County.

• Very concerned about CWD and how it will eventually impact Georgia deer hunting.

• I have hunted 59 years. Again if you don’t have $10,000 a year to feed deer, your handicapped by out of state and wealthy hunt clubs.

• If CWD makes it into Georgia, which seems like only a matter of time, my deer hunting days may be over. No way I’ll risk eating a CWD deer.

• We need a longer bear season in central Georgia and/or make it like a lottery where we can draw tags and hunt them for an extended season. The bear is why we don’t have the deer like we should in my area.

• Make it legal to hunt bears over bait.

• DNR needs to leave the fishing regulations alone.

• I think overall the deer herd around my property seems to be in the best health I have seen in years. All of the bucks I seen or had on camera kept their weight on throughout the rut.

• The deer crop damage permit system needs more attention by DNR. With night vision and suppressors being used, this has turned into a sport that has greatly affected the deer population in certain areas.

• To strengthen the total Georgia deer herd, the PA and WI genetic southern deer strain should be introduced into the northern part of the state.

• Ga DNR needs to do research on what happened to doves in Georgia. They are nowhere to be found anymore.

• I would like to see the Lake Lanier Islands Archery Hunt go back to where you are allowed to bring a guest with you. It was not a safe experience this year going out on the boat and hunting alone.

• No baiting, make people hunt deer the way I grew up hunting them. It will definitely save some young buck lives.

• The addition of opening either sex for the entire season in Oconee County was a good decision.

• The cost of out-of-state license. especially when I’m a Georgia landowner.

• Allow one national forest doe to be taken east of Highway 75 in north Georgia.

• Implementation of antler restrictions by counties has been a failure in my opinion. I believe the state’s restriction on one deer is the better way to manage the herd. Look at counties that have implemented strict restrictions on both deer. Have these counties seen a positive result? I don’t think so.  Dooly was once No. 1 in GON’s rankings. The last ranking I saw Dooly had fell considerably. I hunt in a county that implemented strict restrictions. I have hunted in the county for about 25 years. The quality of the bucks has decreased in my opinion. I think that there are always going to be bucks that inferior. If you see a 3 1/2-year-old buck that is only a 6-point, he most likely needs to be removed from the heard. However, doing so is illegal so most hunters will obey the law and not remove the buck from the herd.  I truly believe the stricter antler restrictions have had an unintended negative results.

• Hunted for last 50 years, being able to lease land or get into a club is being priced out of reach for most hunters.

• I am concerned with the state of the availability of hunting land. I have hunted private land for 25 years, but with ownership of the land I have hunted for so long, I am now looking for a new place to hunt. There seems to be a lack of hunting club opportunities or particularly for land for lease in the state. I have spent considerable effort asking almost everyone I know looking for a club or land. Sadly, I have almost come to the conclusion to pursue hunting opportunities out of state because of this. Yes, I will continue to hunt public land where feasible and where it seems safe enough to do so, but it would be nice to have private opportunities to do so. Additionally, I am concerned for the seemingly sharp decline of the number of turkeys in Georgia. Turkeys are my passion and there does not seem to be near the numbers that I saw 25 years ago. I have heard the same from other turkey hunters. I would love to see a one-turkey limit for a year or two to help bolster the numbers once again. A little sacrifice on the part of hunters would probably go a long way. Maybe a new law to outlaw the shooting of jakes? I don’t know the answer, but I am very concerned about the turkeys.

• I’d love to see bear baiting legalized. I’ve noticed a large increase in bear pictures in my hunting areas in Cherokee County and believe the population is on the rise. Baiting would provide for some harvest opportunities while deer hunting over bait that is not currently legal.

• I would like to see more land management geared toward wildlife on national forest.

• Black bears should be regulated as predators, not endangered species. There are more bears in the mountains than the DNR will ever know. They need to have a season and regulated on a personal bag limit. They should be able to be harvested over “bait,” the same as a 150-inch buck, considering there are 30-plus 150-lb. bears for every one 150-inch buck walking these mountains. The use of dogs for bear hunting should also be allowed on private lands, considering it is a tradition that dates back to before the creation of our state and an overbearing government governed by emotions.

• Thank GON for your support of hunting and fishing over the years.

• Always enjoy hunting in Georgia, great state.

• I try to harvest only mature bucks. I often wonder if both bucks were required to have 4 or more points on one side if the quality of deer would improve even more. I’m aware not everyone hunts for the same reasons though. On the other hand I feel that more big bucks have been harvested over the past few years due to more management and feed being abundant.

• I don’t regularly hunt public land for deer and turkey but judging from what I read on social media, it’s been a mess lately with people living on and trashing WMAs and people not following the regs and hunting on off dates or doing man drives, driving on non-permitted roads, etc. A lot seems attributed to immigrants and people new from out of state. With all the money we pay for licenses now, I wish the state would put more effort into enforcement. Not that I’m for over policing, but protection of our state resources should be important and Georgia residents should have plenty of safe public available to them.

• I would like to see more quality deer. I rarely see deer older than a couple of years old, including does. I do see a lot of deer, so this isn’t the problem. I don’t know what would be the solution. We try to harvest only mature deer older that 1 or 2 years old.

• I love hunting in Georgia. I wish Yuchi WMA had more rifle doe days.

• I wish we had more drop-off spots for Feed The Hungry.

• The rut in our area was delayed a full two weeks, which was very unusual. The only factor that sticks out is the early freeze in October, followed by a warmer spell around Halloween and early November.

• Need more days to hunt dogs on WMA land for hogs. Deer season needs to be over Jan 1 so we can dog hunt squirrels, rabbits and hogs.

• Love the magazine online. The hard copy is hard to read at times because the print quality.

• I appreciate the fact that my neighbors put up with me trapping nuisance animals like raccoons and opossums that get in our crawl spaces under house.

• The longer season is wonderful.

• I am 100% in favor of Georgia going to a one-buck limit. This would make people think before shooting “nice” bucks that have the genetics to be true giants given enough birthdays.

• Saw more deer hit on roads this year.

• I wish we had a shorter rifle season and had more archery-only counties. It would improve the quality of deer in my opinion.

• Land being developed. Trespassing is down to just about none for deer but turkey is still a problem.

• Our party put in for several quota hunts this year and didn’t get drawn for a single hunt! Seems weird to me, just my 2 cents worth.

• There is a need to push the season back two or three weeks farther north in southwest Georgia. The deer are rutting again at the first of the year. Start season a little later and run it until late January.

• Next to introduce elk.

• With the advent of baiting, technology, cell trail camera, deer processors, etc., we are raising a generation of hunters who have no idea how to hunt deer the “right.” Sitting in a box blind staring at a pile of corn is a long way from real deer hunting. It is more like deer shooting!

• Legalize other methods to trap coyotes.

• To many coyotes in Douglas County.

• There needs to be a state sponsored effort to gauge the deer population in every county. I feel like there are rich and poor spots within each county, much less from county to county.  There is a lot of assumed population densities and I don’t think they are accurate.

• The northern counties need unlimited does, too. There is no reason for Fannin/Union county to not have unlimited doe days like the rest of the state.

• We need another week between youth opening gun and muzzleloader. They should NOT be the same opening weekend. Let the kids get a deer.

• Personally I think every county should have the extended archery season until the end of January. I only bowhunt and it would extend the season for some of us who can’t afford hunting leases.

• The trickle rut lends itself to disproportionate coyote predation with the staggered fawn drops. Anyone paying attention can see that. I wish there was a better state-funded effort to try to unwind that, not sure what the answer is. Maybe curb doe days at the least. Nobody needs 10 deer. Otherwise, a baiting/feeding  has been the single best thing in my 50 years to allow you to inventory, grow and manage herd health. Plus it helps the kids see deer.

• DNR in the US Forest Service need to do a better job at marking open boundary areas for hunting.

• This year and the past couple of years I have talked to MANY hunters who are not even aware of the big game check in process, and never do it, never have. Personally, I think we should go back to paper tags.

• Total doe harvest should be based on location and not statewide. Doe days are correct but bag limits are not.

• Got pictures of my first black bear in extreme northwest Camden County this year.

• Adopt Kentucky’s hunting with weapons, as in shorten rifle season.

• I think hunting over feed should be illegal again.

• Pickens County needs more doe days.

• We need a one-buck limit.

• Stay vigilant for CWD and other diseases that could harm our herd. Have measures in place to handle it

• I’m happy with the way the state manages our hunting seasons. Would like to see more programs to bring young people into hunting.

• We need more hunting dates on WMAs. Stop cutting down so many food sources, also.

• Would like to see a fall turkey season and a longer central Georgia bear season.

• Seems deer are overpopulated. With the threat of CWD, I think limits should be increased to control the population.

• We are in southwest Georgia where agriculture is the main industry. It would be helpful if the season started and ended later because the temperatures here are so hot still in September and the farmers are still harvesting peanuts, corn and cotton.

• Southern WMAs are pathetic. No effort is put in to them by DNR to plant plots, lock gates or check hunters. It’s a free for all from the time the gates are open until season is closed. Absolutely terrible.

Especially South Eastern Ga WMA’s.

• Need more quality-buck restrictions like some of the middle Georgia counties.

• We need to look at either closing turkey season for one to two years or go to only one bird per season. I think the fines for wildlife infractions should be a lot higher to make a statement to lawbreakers.

• 10-inch minimum length on crappie on Lake Oconee and Lake Sinclair.

• Leave turkey hunting alone and stop building houses and warehouses. There is no turkey decline. It is a property decline, which is pushing them to bigger lands.

• Dove season needs to have the old split in October again.

• The rut this year was slow. Saw very little chasing. The fewest mature bucks on camera in the last three years.

• Deer hunting on Paulding Forest was pretty good. It seems to be poached a lot, though. I heard gun shots during the bowhunt. I could be wrong. My first year living in the county. I still think it’s a great WMA.

• It would be nice if the state opened more WMA hunts for more days of the season.

• There are a lot of Florida hunters killing deer and hauling them out of state, small bucks and young does.

• I have always thought that 12 or 13 deer that they allow us to kill each year was too much. But now that I see the overpopulation of those versus bucks, I have started shooting more mature does and donating them to Hunters For The Hungry. I am just glad that I have an outlet to provide that meat for somebody in need. I would never shoot a deer and just leave it out in the woods.

• Everything is good! Just think we need a bear season in all counties.

• Keep up the good work! Love the articles and helpful information. How about an article specially focused on new hunters. I’ve had to learn a lot on my own. I’d be more than happy to share my experiences.

• Thank you for working on behalf of the fish and game in Georgia. I really appreciate your work! I hope 2024 is your best year ever!

• Wish for statewide antler restrictions.

• I like every day being an either-sex day. I don’t shoot many does, but I think it’s the best way to handle doe populations.

• Need to go to statewide physical tag system and statewide no baiting. Statewide one-buck and one-doe bag limit at least until the herd recovers. We need some form of statewide quality buck management. We also need to keep all of our DNR money for DNR use. DNR is embarrassingly short staffed and cannot enforce anything until that is addressed. The reason for that is because our greedy state uses money from outdoor revenue sources to fund non-outdoor projects more than it does what it is intended for and that is just down right terrible. Take a look at other states and it is very easy to see where we lack. We need to really get it together on that front and look into what we can do to make our situation better. Thank you for listening.

• Stop dog hunting.

• Georgia has good public access to hunting but needs more and better public hunting land.

• I feel like chronic wasting disease is inevitably going to start showing up in our state. I feel like we should ban bait to help our wildlife out.

• I have noticed more raccoons, bobcats and coyotes on my game cameras. I did shoot a nice bobcat minutes before shooting my 9-point buck.

• I have a real concern about photos that I am seeing from people with deer nose to nose in feeders. Common sense says that is making for a serious recipe of spreading diseases. Whereas, if they are allowed to browse openly, it is less likely that a germ left on a leaf or blade of grass will be ingested by another deer before the germ can die within a few minutes of exposure. Just my two cents worth.

• Enjoy magazine.

• Keep GON going! We love the magazine!

• My main concern is the decline of the turkey population in my area and apparently in many parts of Georgia. Hopefully they will bounce back.

• Love GON, it’s the full spectrum of Georgia outdoors, y’all really do a great job.

• Looking forward to exploring public land more next year.

• Thank you for your time. All hunters over 70 years old, residents or out of state,  should have reduced or free hunt/fish licenses.

• I would like to see the deer season extended through January.

• I feel baiting is great for attracting does and young bucks, as well as mature bucks at night. However, it is incredibly rare we catch a buck over 3 1/2 years old on a feeder during daylight hours. It may draw mature bucks to the area and keep them around to some extent, but that’s about it in my opinion.

• Confusion concerning hunting regulations with doe days assigned for Fannin and Union on private land but none on national forest. Should have separate regulations spelled out for national forest. Too much confusion when reading regulations. Sure would like to talk to someone with DNR. Been hunting all my life and last couple years regulations get more confusing every year.

• I like the season length we have here in Georgia. Don’t change that. Muzzleloader is my favorite. I wish hunters could be allowed to hunt pigs year-round on public land with any weapon. I’m sure that would be challenging to prevent poaching, but there must be some way. Speaking of poaching, I feel there’s a lot more of that happening than people realize, and all efforts to stop it are appreciated by legal/ethical hunters.

• More restrictions on bucks being killed. One buck per season.

• I wish there was a way to let hunters know where you are hunting on a WMA.  Currently, if you have someone hunting with you and you guys are sharing a vehicle, other hunters suspect you are hunting in the area where the vehicle is parked. No one knows where your buddy is hunting. This could be important to help prevent other hunters from walking in on you. Some people use orange tape to mark where they went in the woods. I think a flag system (similar to a go cart flag with fiberglass pole) would work well for identifying an area, and it is easy to put up or take down when exiting the woods.  The problem I noticed with people using the orange tape is they do not take it down when they leave the area.

• We hope the turkey regulations are making a positive impact on our turkey population.

• Based on what I saw at two different processors in Hancock and Crisp counties, lots of small deer being shot.

• Wish they would go back to five tags. Two bucks and three does.

• Would like to have more game wardens. More severe fines/penalties for hunting, fishing and boating violations. More hunter education on safety, tree stand safety and target identification safety.

• Allow Georgia landowners that live out of state but have a Georgia address to purchase lifetime sportsman licenses. The state of Georgia does a great job overall of managing the resources.

• The amount of out-of-state hunters who come into Georgia and kill young, immature bucks is hurtful to our herd.

• I would like more archery-only WMAs and crossbows to be only allowed during rifle/muzzleloader season.

• Opportunity for antlered deer in velvet (earlier season start) should be considered.

• If corn piles are legal, make crossbows youth and disabled only. Can’t have both and a successful deer herd.

• Would like to see all bucks taken be required to have at least 4 points on one side, except maybe for youth.

• Need stricter regs for bucks.

• I’m glad too see others are having good success. My area is poor land, mostly planted pines. Not a good source of food.

• I personally would like to see Georgia take the step that has improved the quality of mature bucks in many states and that is to shorten the rifle season and go to a one-buck limit, with no antler restrictions on that deer.

• We loved having the doe days throughout all of gun season. We really hope that continues in north Georgia.

• DNR needs more officers to combat poaching, road shooting and trespassing. They are stretched way to thin.

• With the Georgia wild turkey population continuing to decline, it’s time our DNR stopped allowing the harvest of jakes by anyone but youth hunters. And if they won’t outlaw it, us turkey hunters can make that decision ourselves to help the resource we love.

• I feel like the tool on the website isn’t accurate and I also feel like predicted rut data isn’t accurate. There should be a way to report people who over hunt on leases they have.

• As an out-of-state Georgia landowner and tax payer, the price of out-of-state hunting/fishing licenses for landowners seems excessive.

• Even though I harvested the biggest deer of my lifetime, the photos and your magazine makes mine look little.

• Too many deer. Season needs to be extended.

• Regarding the rule in Early County of taking doe season out the first two weeks of archery season, our farm is overrun with deer and the farmer is allowed to shoot deer and not utilize the meat. Rule makes no sense.

• To each their own but I still do not agree with hunting over bait.

• I’ve seen barely-out-of-spots deer being dropped off at processors. After cleaning, there isn’t 10 pounds of meat. Aggravating!

• Would like more days to hunt the WMAs.

• I think the DNR in Georgia does an excellent job of managing our resources and providing deer hunters with fantastic opportunities to hunt. We are blessed to be sportsman in this state!

• I would prefer fewer hunting stories and more specific info about hunting the WMAs. The rut hunt article in the last issue is more along my interest. I’m not fishing these days.

• The season ends on the Jan. 14, except a few counties stay open longer for archery. Keep more WMAs open until Jan. 14 for rifle. Not all of us are in hunting clubs or have private  land to hunt on, thank you.

• I would like the idea of a more defined statewide quality deer management solution.

• I really wish Georgia would allow us to take orange vests off once in an elevated stand like a lot of other states do. Wear it while commuting on the ground, but let us remove it once in stand, especially on private land!

• I feel like a very large percentage of our Georgia resident next generation hunters are not going outdoors due to extreme lease prices being paid by out-of-state hunters. As someone who is involved in the youth shooting sports, it’s incredible how many youth are missing these opportunities that parents can’t afford it. Unfortunately, I see this mushrooming in the future and declining Georgia’s overall hunter numbers drastically. Sure, we have public land, but the lack of how-to knowledge deters most people from taking advantage of these resources. Life is about choices; someone needs to start making some good ones to save a wonderful heritage.

• Would prefer more days to hunt my local Paulding Forest WMA. The nine to 10 days available to gun hunt is too few.

Would also like Hancock to become more QDM vs. just 4 on 1 side, so we could let some bucks grow to full maturity.

• Got to keep CWD out of Georgia. Saw way less turkeys this year than last. Would be nice if it was easier to get a gator tag.

• I have to pay the same amount  of money for hunting license and only have 28 days to hunt does in my county when I only live less then a mile from a county line that is 128 days.

• Ban feeding. At minimum ban corn. In humid environments, corn produces aflatoxins and kills turkeys. It feeds raccoons during the tough time of the year. When the feeders are empty (spring), there are more hungry nest predators out looking to kill baby turkeys. Promotes nose to nose contact of deer and increases disease.

• Georgia needs to have more regionally specific antler restrictions. Not a one size fits all.

• Wish Hunters for the Hungry had more free drop sights around state like they used to. We need to harvest more does, but we don’t because Hunters for the Hungry is not as strong as it once was.

• We have one covey of wild quail, which is amazing. Need more information about inshore saltwater fishing. We fish in Florida but would like to start fishing in Georgia.

• I think in Harris County the turkey limit needs to be dropped to one tom a season.

Have seen a decline in turkeys over the past few years.

• I would like for doe days to come back . Seems to be a decline in the doe population in our county. Shorter doe season.

• Wish there were no depredation permits or that they were more restricted.

• Thanks for doing this.

• I have only recently started hunting seriously for a couple years. The only thing on my mind is I wish I would’ve started earlier. I love it and live for it today.

• We need ways to get a handle on coyotes in the state. Most hunters don’t trap or are not skilled to trap, and hunting coyotes is time consuming. Can state funds be made available for experienced or equipped trappers or hunters for coyotes?

• Our club would like to see the season extended to mid February.

• On my property I have a lot of bucks that need to be culled, but I only have two bucks that I can harvest. I would like to be able to harvest a few more bucks instead of 10 anterless deer.

• Before they strip anymore turkey tags from us, please strip away the decoys and fanning first.

• I’d like to see some WMAs that are open hunts put under the quota system and reduce the number of hunters on some WMAs.

• Extend season to end of January statewide. Archery only. Provide one bonus quality buck tag for a fee that is only valid during extended archery season.

• Hunters need to quit arguing about legal methods used. Bow or crossbow. Feed or no feed. Let folks kill what makes THEM happy. Be happy if it’s a small buck, big buck, doe or whatever. Especially kids. They will remember that small buck or doe forever. Be thrilled for them. We need them for the future of hunting.

• I’m new to Georgia and your regs need to be clarified in a few places. They are somewhat confusing. And it’s not just me. I see many others looking for answers on social media. I’d be happy to help.

• Too many doe tags and need one more buck tag

• The state’s  DNR funding is a major concern. Not only is there not enough being spent on existing WMAs but land acquisition efforts are lacking. Without a diligent plan and effort, the state will find itself in a predicament and wonder how it got there.

• I wish the state would implement the killing of does to early season only and have a cut-off date in mid-November to secure the birth of future buck fawns.

• Both deer hunting and fishing have been excellent the past several years. I hope that the excellent wildlife management program continues and CWD monitoring is strong.

• I believe the bag limit it too high in Georgia. Should be two bucks and a lower doe amount, somewhere around five or six.

• I wish the DNR would go ahead and restrict or ban baiting. With CWD knocking on the door, now is the time to be proactive. I am also very concerned with the fast rate of land development and habitat loss.

• We can stock trout so why can’t we stock quail in the WMAs for hunting? It could be a public-private deal and might provide some jobs for breeders.

• Need more either-sex days in Northern Zone.

• Wish the whole state would go trophy.

• Limit on deer is too generous.

• Increase non-resident hunting license fees. We have a ton of out-of-state hunters taking advantage of our quota hunts. This would increase revenue by a large number.

• I contribute wild hog populations to the decline in deer populations due to hogs destroying deer food.

• We have a few black bears on our property in Jones County as confirmed by tracks and trail-camera photos. Would love to see a season open in our county so we can manage them.

• I would like to see more presence of Law Enforcement in Polk County. I know the state only has so many resources. I am concerned with the amount of doe days in Polk County. I believe there are too many, which shows a decline in deer seen over the years. Extremely concerned with the amount of poachers.

• Way too many doe days in Georgia. The coyote population is way too high, hurting deer and turkey populations.

• They need to expand the small-game season a month so we can hunt when deer season is over.

• To lease hunting land is too expensive, $20 to $30 dollar an acre is too much. Think about it, 100 acres at $20 dollars is $2,000.

If have to use a 3rd party to lease hunting, if it is a new lease on timber land you can not leave anything on the land, this includes all stands, campers and fire pits. What you arrive with you leave with.

To hunt in Ga is very expensive.

• I appreciate GON and the quality product they have produced year after year. Thank you!

• Still have to correct the narrative that if I let a buck walk the neighbor will shoot it. We can grow trophy deer on small tracts of land if the surrounding landowners have the same mindset.

• I think Georgia has some great hunting but we still allow dog hunting and too long of a rifle season that affects the quality of the herd. There is also not nearly enough game and fish officers to cover the state.

• See a lot less deer once the season was underway.

• Keep the deer-dog hunting rights for the state of Georgia.

• Thank you GON for providing a great publication, especially like the trapping articles!

• I thought it interesting that there were three options on the reporting form to separate the bucks into two categories (antlered and button bucks). I think that will give biologist a better idea as to the age of bucks harvested in Georgia.

• I wish there was more talk through GON on quota hunts. Success rate is good for deer and meat, but I personally like to build points and go to quality areas. It would be a nice addition to GON or DNR to have quality-buck data for higher demand areas, on quota hunts only though. I think it’s part of the hunters responsibility to survey, scout and research WMAs in general. However, after waiting four to seven years to go on special hunts, it would be nice to know where the bigger bucks come from. Also on quota hunts, the same would apply on other game. How successful dove hunts tend to be, quail, etc. Again only quota hunts. As a hunter who’s being patient and building points, I want to use those points in areas where the patience pays off. One last comment on GON. I’m sure it’s a hassle having so many antlers to measure for the Truck-Buck. But I was a fan when you had the Northern and Southern Zones. I hoped one day there would be three or four zones; North or Northeast and Northwest, and then Southeast and Southwest. It would give a lot of hunters a chance to enter. Thank you GON for all you do and have done over the years. A truly great magazine and group of people.

• I think the turkey season should be started earlier. I like the limit at two gobblers, but the season starts too late!

• I wish the legislature would bring back a hunting license for landowners who are not permanent residents at a reduced cost than a non-resident license.

• We need to have four on one side on all bucks statewide to give the small bucks a chance to develop their best antlers. Also need to lower the doe bag limits to just two a season.

• With the number of alligator sightings increasing and the apparent increase in population, the number of tags should be increased. Giving more hunters an opportunity each season.

• If you haven’t, make this the year you expect Jesus and take a young person hunting or fishing.

• Coyotes are destroying our deer and especially the turkey population. I’m not sure what alternative universe the DNR is living on by them saying that it’s not the coyotes that are destroying them. I’ve seen too much evidence. I’m 65 and been retired for seven years and spend a LOT of time in the woods. I’m a very good woodsman in my personal opinion. Been doing it for 50-plus years. Thanks GON for all that you do for us hunters.

• New neighbors that like to shoot.

• Need to have a turkey hunt closer to November. Start deer season later so it’s not so hot and let it go further into winter (January-February).

• If people want to improve the turkey population, they need to trap for predators and egg eaters, like possums and raccoons.

• Would like to see more lakes with blue catfish in the state.

• I really appreciate the magazine and sharing of expertise with all hunting and fishing areas.

• Need more restrictions on antlers. Bow season for first two week of November. Less opportunity for out-of-state hunters. Let the out-of-state hunters pay more and kill less.

• It seems turkey activity/numbers has increased this year in Glascock County over what I saw in recent years. Is that a statewide trend?

• I miss the days where there was always plenty of timber company land available to lease around the middle Georgia area. Most of the large tracts have been bought up by the wealthy and now it leaves the middle class to resort to buying small 3- to 5-acre tracts next to the large tracts with the hopes that they won’t high fence the state-owned deer. I have tried hunting public land and there are too many people hunting these places for me to be able to enjoy fair and ethical hunting the way I grew up doing with my dad. I had 115 acres adjacent to my property that we leased last season. We lost it this season when the owners sold the property and decided to let a timber rep/friend/realtor hunt it for free. It’s his right to do what he want with his land, but that’s just my luck. They ain’t making no more land, and it’s getting extremely hard for the middle-class folks to find anything long term anymore. Deep pockets will get the prime locations these days.

• Keep turkey season the same as last year to help re-populate them.

• Keep up the good work GON!

• Should be able to use higher caliber rifles on WMAs to hunt hogs!

• Tag number needs to decrease and need more doe days.

• Impeach Biden.

• Deer season too long.

• Need a hog eradication program.

• Glad to see the state adjust the season dates for SWGA. Also, I have really enjoyed hunting our state public lands this season.

• Introduce more deer on the northern WMAs. Deer population is very slim.

• When there is a managed deer hunt going, they should not allow rabbit hunting or other game hunts at the same time!

• I think the turkey season with the two-bird limit is fine. I don’t see where it matters if both are taken on the same day. Turkeys seem to be on the decline in my area. I think predators have a lot to do with that. Also the late prescribed burns hurt with nesting. I think all burns should be prior to March and maybe an incentive for predator control. I don’t understand the reason for all the hoops to jump through and the substantial cost to be legal for trapping.

• Make muzzleloader season longer and shorten archery.

• Rifle season needs to be shorter in my opinion. The deer are so pressured with a three-month rifle season that deer hunting for an archery-only hunter like myself is like pulling teeth come rifle season.

• Need to change the amounts of deer you can take to two bucks and five does.

• I like how some of our neighboring states have a shorter rifle season but archery most of the year. I think it improves the age class of bucks and can take a doe at any time.

• Keep enforcing quality.

• Need more disabled hunts on more of the WMAs.

• Too many people killing anything that is brown.

• Deer processors should require hunters to provide proof of legal checking of deer. Moreover, if Georgia and Florida are serious about enforcing no deer bones going across state lines, they should mandate that deer being processed for non-resident hunters must be boneless.

• Cost for out-of-state senior should be lower. People in their 70s want to hunt but cant afford $300 plus fees.

• Lower the doe limit.

• I believe the DNR is doing a great job of building the quality of the deer herd.

• I feel like the season could start a little later, like opening of archery first weekend of October, and run through January.

• Season seems to be too long.  Should close Dec. 15 or at least by Jan. 1.

• We need a later ending deer date in January.

• All the timbering disrupted the deer herd and their movement.

• I believe DNR needs to re-look at how they administer bear season. I understand one day and then a second if not enough females are taken. I just question the selection of the days. I think they should be closer together and at the end of November to the first part of December. Waiting until first week of January is getting too close to when they should be giving birth to their offspring.

• I’m often seeing the ability of hunting hogs at night abused by the taking of deer seen while supposedly “hog hunting.”

• State needs to buy more land for hunting.

• More processors are needed and the price prohibits me from taking more than two deer. Usually only take one.

• Being in a mountain county, the lack of doe days are limited to only a few a year. While I don’t understand how the limits are decided nor the days in which you can harvest the antlerless deer, I do know that we have what seems to be a comparable number of deer in the herds of the counties with season-long either-sex days. I would like to see more either-sex days like the other counties.

• Need more gun hunting days.

• There isn’t any deer on public land in Lumpkin County anymore. My option is a couple different things. 1) On Forest Service land, the food plots have not been maintained in years, I mean many years. 2) People kill whatever they want and as many as they want with no worry of getting caught. The presence of DNR is virtually zero and the same for Forest Service personnel. Every old road that has dirt pile at the start and sign saying foot-travel only is now a road for these jeep rides that only make a giant mud hole. For every old road and trail you see, dirt bike/adventure bikes tracks if not the bike riders them selves. 3) WMAs. What a pity, I remember the days when I was a kid when everyone who hunted saved a buck tag to hunt the Thanksgiving hunt on Blue Ridge. It makes no sense why they ever started tagging deer for you that was taken on a WMA hunt. And what’s even more stupid is allowing a person to kill two bucks on a given hunt. The food plots on WMAs around here is pathetic and even worse on forest service lands. I’ve hunted the WMAs and forest service lands here in Lumpkin Co. and know for a fact what I’m talking about on ever thing I’ve mentioned above.

• We need more public land that is accessible for handicapped people.

• Too many doe days at the end of the year in the Northern Zone. Does are bred and that’s a shame. Need more the first part of season to get meat early.

• Would like to see WRD implement buck days and doe days all season long like it is presently.

• I would like to see more state of Georgia  based studies for the wild turkey. Sure all these organizations are doing studies but I rarely hear of them from Georgia. I also would like to reduce the number of birds out-of-state hunters are able to kill each year to one bird. State residents should not have to suffer for out-of-state hunters to come in and kill the birds, specifically on public land. I believe one public-land bird for out-of-state hunters is sufficient. And I’d be ok if other states reciprocated that, as well. No one needs to harvest 10 and 20 birds a year spread out over a few states. It’s not a numbers game. If you want to kill 20 birds. Hit 20 states. Just my opinion.

• Deer season is too long, can’t small-game on national forest land due to long deer season. No quail habitat, no grouse in the mountains due to lack of timber management. Old growth timber feeds nothing in low acorn production. No cover or nesting habitat for turkeys or grouse.

• Good job DNR!

• Suppressors should be legal to save hearing.

• The start of turkey season needs to be moved back to around March 20 with a bag limit of two birds.

• I think more folks are letting little ones walk. This improves the age structure.

• Overall it was a good year. It would have been great to take one of our mature bucks, but that’s how it goes.

• Reduce the number of does to be harvested.

I believe the state is doing outdoorsmen a disservice by extensively logging public land for profit instead of this property being utilized for its intended purpose of hunting and wildlife management.

• I think DNR should be more active checking valid hunting licenses at WMAs.

• Duck season needs to start later and run into February. Excuse is it gets into the breeding but Georgia doesn’t see many birds and the few we do get aren’t here until the end of the season. Migration has changed for all of the U.S. It’s past time that season dates change for us in the Southeast.

• Concerned with spread of CWD. Also need quality-buck requirements to improve size of deer.

• To many cars and coyotes and loss of land. Don’t need all these doe days and the long season.

• I would love to see a one-buck limit. Would also love to see firearms season shortened and be the first two weeks of December only.

• I feel like all counties should be trophy managed or dropped to one buck a season. All counties should have the potential for mature trophy bucks like Macon, Dooly and the other counties. Please consider making stricter regulations on bucks.

• Great magazine!

• Hogs in Taylor County are definitely on the increase, making food plots a continued maintenance problem.

• I think Georgia should charge for a quota hunt and use funds to help maintain areas or purchase land. Also, more duck hunting areas are needed.

• I am sure it’s almost time to cut back on the number of does taken. It’s probably a car/deer/insurance situation that is completely out of the hunters’ hands. There are fewer deer in our neck of the woods. Also a sign of the times that most normal farmers have been shut out of growing crops with the price of seed and fertilizer. So fields stand bare or the alternative is to grow pines.

• Wondering if the QDM is helping or hurting the quality of our deer. Seeing a lot of deer that don’t look like they will become quality bucks but aren’t shooters. With these deer surviving and breeding, will it continue to reduce quality deer?

• Need to have laws so smaller bucks aren’t taken.

• I would love to see the WMAs and national forest in the mountains around me actually manage properly. Controlled burns, plant food plots, predator control, etc. In the mountains for the past few years, the deer and turkey hunting has been pretty dismal, and it makes me angry that my tax dollars aren’t being used appropriately for these areas. I feel ripped off by the state. Just visit any WMA in the mountains and see for yourself if anything at all has been done to keep the property up. The funding is available so whose pockets are getting it?

• Increase the acreage requirements for dog hunting! 250 acres for a private landowner is not enough!

• As an older newbie, it would be helpful to have some place to meet other hunters, maybe like the Atlanta Fly Fishing Club, with meetings every month to learn from seasoned hunters and share information.  This would help get some new blood and help those of us who did not grow up around hunters to learn the ropes. This is a big barrier to entry.

• Need 8-point or better regulations for whole state of Georgia unless you’re under 17 years old.

• Every county should be QDM.

• More deer stocking in White County.

• I think Georgia should move to a one-buck limited and shorten the rifle season. I think this would really improve buck quality.

• Good turkey season in Bacon County. Feral hogs on hunting areas. One coyote killed this year.

• Timber companies charge too much for land and don’t  maintain  roads. They  don’t  do prescribed burns either.

• Published regulations are confusing at times.

• We have too many doe days. Wish we could reduce them. I like seeing deer. I don’t always shoot what comes in, enjoy seeing them.

• Stocking of larger trout.

• I think GON is a great asset to Georgia outdoorsmen. Keep up the good work.

• Hunting bear now is impossible on the property I hunt. Some members choose to hunt deer over bait. We only have about 300 acres. Don’t want to take a chance shooting a bear. I’m hunting over 200 yards from bait, but I’m not taking a chance and leaving a judgement call in a game warden’s discretion. So my bear hunting since legalizing bait is over.

• Do away with rifle hunting in Georgia or at least shorten to two weeks and the remaining time be archery only.

• I would like to see a state requirement on antler size. I think it should be at least four points or a 15-inch outside spread as a minimum for harvest.

• Lower doe limit.

• Concerned about the number of deer in Macon County. Need more doe harvest from broader group of hunters. Struggle to reduce our herd only to attract large numbers of deer from neighboring properties. All this while neighbors allow bucks to reach 3.5 to 4.5 years, seldom beyond.

• Please lower the turkey limit to one gobbler a year before it’s too late. The turkey population seems slightly better this year but still not as high as it once was.

• Need more patrolling by DNR on trespassing on private land.

• It does no good and hurts to be on quality management rules when on the other side of the street is the next county not under quality management, and they can shoot anything they want.

• I am very pleased with the GON magazine. I am 74 years old and have found many useful articles in your well-written magazine.

• As mentioned previously I hunt my neighborhood. We are next to approximately a 150-acre tract of national forest.  There should be an exception on allowing does to be killed in Union County to prevent the overcrowding I am personally trying to control on my own property. This could also prevent diseases.

• I would like to see the number of either-sex hunting days increased in Rabun County.

• We need to get with DNR and change the duck hunting dates for the state. Most of our ducks due to weather conditions now a days don’t really start showing up until December and into February. We only get 60 days, so we should change the 60 days we get for the better.

• We need help with the pig problem in Grady County. Just killing every pig we see is not working. We need some type of pig bait like LSU has come up with. Cut the red tape and get us some relief.

• Open night hunting in May for coyotes and hogs on WMAs.

• I recently thought of a great idea that I think the state of Georgia as a whole would highly benefit from. It’s tough to kill a buck in velvet in archery season. Without fail, they shed their velvet a week or just days prior to season starting. I would like to propose an early season lottery for whitetail. It would be a three- to five-day hunt. Hunters could contribute $20 or $25 toward a lottery slot. That would generate a significant amount of money for WRD, while also allowing hunters to have a shot at a buck in velvet. I would think the limited early season time frame would mimic South Carolina’s early season beginning in August. I think it’s a great idea, and I will be contacting our state representatives to discuss it further at length.

• I’m beginning to have concerns about over population in areas of the state due to trophy hunting and lower hunter density. I’m excited to see Georgia begin to show what it can produce when so many more bucks are getting to 5 years old and expressing their full genetic potential, but I worry many hunters are not harvesting enough does due to no wanting to disrupt their pursuits of a mature buck each hunt. Insurance companies will lobby for additional changes if we do not self regulate the herd numbers, and even with 10 doe tags and does being much better venison than bucks, I don’t feel folks are taking their fair share of does. Maybe if there was some way to provide a convenient source for donating does for meat (hunters for the hungry, processor selling to public for the same cost of processing, etc) folks would take more. If not, I’m thinking it won’t be long before a new regulation, such as having to take two does before receiving a buck tag, is put into place to counter this. Hogs also continue to be a problem here in Tift County and aren’t going away. They need to be closely regulated. They were never on my properties until about 2007 and I feel their showing up was 100% from being caught by dog hunters somewhere else and released in my areas. This relocating of live hogs needs to be highly illegal to help protect the few areas in Georgia that still don’t have them. Resources for managing them also need to be provided.

• Management areas aren’t locked up appropriately near me, so people sneak in and shoot stuff. The main WMA I hunt is open all year and everything brown dies.  I would love to see it closed and only select hunting dates available. Little Satilla WMA.

• I hunt private land mostly but still love WMA hunting, just need more than a few hunts a year. Maybe they need to add more dates for public land.

• I would encourage the hunting community as a whole to explore the impact habitat plays. Managing for quality native habitat leads to more sustainable populations of all wildlife. And it’s extremely enjoyable as it provides year-round projects. Also, we must take CWD seriously, as this is the No. 1 threat to our hunting tradition in Georgia.

• Georgia’s deer herd quality has improved drastically over the last 10 years. People are becoming more educated and managing deer herds on their leases because they are seeing results, especially from hunting over man-provided food sources.

• Wish the whole state could have antler restrictions except for youth under age 16.

• I wish there were more places to have wild hogs processed.

• Open up more hog hunting on WMAs that have issues. I’d make events out of it.

• I think we should have longer times to hunt whitetail deer like in Alabama. Deer are still in rut here until February.

• Georgia should go to one-buck limit like many other states to improve quality/age of bucks being killed during our very long season.

• I think we have to find more ways to create more hunting opportunities. Land for clubs has gotten so sparse and expensive. If we don’t find ways to open space, we’ll lose the next generation.

• Need to look at more bear days in Bleckley County. They are everywhere and tear feeders up and run the deer off your spot.

• Season should end Jan. 1.

• I’m satisfied with most of the hunting regulations that are currently in place.

• More articles and education on aging deer and building a stronger herd.  We need more hunters to understand what GON understands to be true about herd management.

• I tagged out on bucks in the second week of the season. I also harvested one doe. I went to a state-park hunt and harvested a buck. I did not hunt anymore as I had all the meat I needed.

• I do not hunt out of state. Georgia has decent deer hunting, and I have hunted here since I was little (I’m 45 years old) and started young. The hunting has definitely changed over the years for the better in some ways and for the worse in others. Deer density is much, much lower in the mountains than in the 1980s and 1990s growing up and eventually working for the forest service in Blue Ridge (I have always been fascinated by deer and have always kept up with the herd intimately). So I would love to see the density improve to its former glory—or at least close to it. I see this happening with a few steps, which are highly controversial I am sure. But this is the voice of experience talking, and to be honest we have gotten what we asked for and what we deserve in so many ways.

• Bears—they’ve got to go. We need to take out a lot more bears if we are going to improve the deer herd in the mountains—period. And once we get them under control, it really needs to stay that way. There are way too many, and they eat deer, and they have similar competitive diets.  We need to double the bear harvest for a while in my opinion.

• Quit killing does on national forest in the mtns. Largely taken care of, but needs to be zero for a while.

• Coyotes: Create an incentive program for killing lots of yotes (one idea I had is to be able to kill one extra 8 or better point buck if you prove that you’ve killed 10 or more coyotes). Could make it 15 yotes, but either way, that is an incentive and the yotes will kill those extra deer anyway even if we don’t.  Could bring the pelts somewhere or could send in photo evidence of the kills.

• Make Cohutta WMA trophy buck only for a while. Let’s be honest, there ain’t many deer in Cohutta anymore. Since the two monster storms in the 1990s, we don’t need to be killing spikes and 4-pointers on Cohutta WMA.  And usually, and IF, you even see a deer, it is usually a trophy buck anyway. I would say at least 40% of the deer I see on Cohutta are trophy bucks. Some get away, some don’t.  Out of 1,000 or more hunters, we check in 30 to 40 bucks a year. They might as well all be trophies.

• Bring back the WMA quality hunters by making them pay a little extra to be able to hunt on the WMAs. I work for Georgia government anyway, and when we ask people to pay a nominal fee, it always raises the quality of the work attached to the permit. Free permits usually equal poor quality work.

• Trail Cameras need to be illegal on WMAs. It leads to people becoming obsessed with monster bucks on the WMAs and then sneaking corn into the woods (I have seen it with my own eyes).  Private land is a different matter, I think trail cams are awesome, but they do take away some of the challenge and the glory of WMA hunting IMO.

• I hunted three mountain WMAs this year with 45 miles of hiking (no trails). I hunted 12 days total on WMAs in the mountains and saw less than 15 deer. About 50% bucks; a variety of sizes and ages on the bucks. Did not harvest any. I saw zero deer on Cohutta WMA (hiked 17 miles total) and 3 on John’s Mountain (15 miles total hiked).

• In addition to the buck and a couple of elderly does, I have killed at least 13 hogs on my primary hunting property in Wilkinson County, so overall I have had a great season.

• We went to Kansas last year to hunt with an outfitter for the first time and had a wonderful time.

• Keep up the excellent work of making the outdoors so much fun!

• Hunted Kentucky and Maryland. Killed a doe in Kentucky gave the meat to some locals. Didn’t kill anything in Maryland.

• My turkey season in Wilkinson County could have been better.

• Dog hunting is killing this deer population. The deer do not want to come out in daylight hours. They go nocturnal after two to three weeks.

• I tagged out early this year, saw plenty of bucks and does and killed my biggest buck ever this year. It was my first year to hunt since retiring and I could go on the best days to hunt instead of looking at them on the camera that were walking by my stand while I was at work in previous years. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year. Thank you for all of the great work and product that GON produces.

• Cell cameras I think have been the biggest game changer. No more collecting SD cards after you hunted the wrong place on your weekend hunting trip. Keep up the good work GON.

• Please do the survey for turkey season. Very curious to see the results.

• Deer hunting is a joke compared to what is used to be… $65,000 trucks, cell phones, generators, trail cameras, $2,000 rifles and $700 scopes. What a joke. You never been deer hunting until you slept on your back seat of an old Pontiac or in the trunk. That’s right, in your trunk. I grew up rough.


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