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In my area I've seen fewer road kill in recent memory... but I have seen a few winter kills without looking too hard. Even though its stayed cold, we've just enough breaks between storms to melt down some of the snow around the oak brush areas. Feb is usually a big snow month so hopefully we get breaks between storms to melt things down a bit.


-DallanC
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Fudd,^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
Hopefully next time we can visit longer,,,,,:grin:..

All those southern mountains are looking to get hammered with 2-3 feet of snow
over the next 48 hours...:!:....
Looks like even in Loa, they will get 12" to 18" of new snow.....:!:.....
 

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In my area I've seen fewer road kill in recent memory... but I have seen a few winter kills without looking too hard. Even though its stayed cold, we've just enough breaks between storms to melt down some of the snow around the oak brush areas. Feb is usually a big snow month so hopefully we get breaks between storms to melt things down a bit.

-DallanC
Technically "winter kill" does not occur until around March and beyond. Deer dying this time of year would be dying due to Fall and Summer deficiencies. There is a lag affect when it comes to seasonal mortality.

If deer go into winter with good fat reserves and are healthy, they can make it through very cold winters with very deep snow. Winter ranges maintain deer, Summer and fall ranges grow deer, and prepare them for the winter.

As for road kill this is very location dependent this time of year(not that I know anything about road kill). Movement drives road kill, and we see this seasonally as well. I just heard from some one that had been counting a stretch of highway in Northern Utah. From Nov 1st through Jan 28th they counted 100 deer hit along the 20 mile stretch of highway. This undoubtedly is a very conservative number given the method of counting, which was daily driving and observation from the vehicle. Based on other studies that have surveyed beyond the side of the road, with better control methods, that number could easily be twice that. Throw in snow plows and other factors, and what you see on the side of road from your car can be at the low end.

My own observations indicate the same thing, a higher than normal rate of road kill for this time of year. Most of it appears to be weather dependent(storm specific). It correlates with weather, and the areas affected are out side the normal Spring, Summer, Fall patterns and routes. It should be a very rare occurrence to have deer hit, let alone seen, in my neighborhood, it typically happens to the East and West of here(Where deer populations exist). But there have been 3 so far this winter. Much of this appears to be driven by the buildup/melt off pattern that we have been seeing. A lot of deer don't appear to be "settled". They move with the melt offs, and get hit after the next storm when they move again.

I had to go back and revise my deer counts for this winter(Ogden and surrounding areas). First issue being that several sub herds showed up about a month late(several things could account for this including the rain we got the end of October). The first counts(December) would have indicated a 70% decline from 2011(last high count). The revised numbers put it at somewhere between a 30%-40% decline. But even after some sub herds showed up, others that had been increasing since ~2009-2010, never showed up at all. Those would get counted as 100% declines, but are not included in my 30%-40% decline number as these are small "remnant" herds. All of these sub herds use to number 200-300 deer from the '30s to the early '90s, including the ones that never showed up this year. The largest sub herd out of all of these was stretching it to get a count of 150 in 2011. The smallest(of the "remnant" herds) sub population that never numbered more than about 75 deer in the late '80s, is at 9 deer.

But yeah, I'm waiting with bated breath for those tag increases we should be seeing based on the DWR's reporting of things.........
 

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Deer herd doing well? I'm feeling like we are going to see a pretty good winter kill with how much and consistent snow we've had. Temps have stayed okay, but there's been lots of snow this year. Guess we'll see how well they're doing at the end of this winter.
 

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Lots of snow this year???? Try close to normal amounts of snow this year. So far, so good. We'll have to see what Feb-April bring.-----SS
 

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Lots of snow this year???? Try close to normal amounts of snow this year. So far, so good. We'll have to see what Feb-April bring.-----SS
Depends on the area. That I-70 split is still holding strong. Many places are well above average. Plenty of places pushing 150% to 200% of normal.

And in those areas that are down around 50%(parts of WY), animals are wintering at higher elevations, in colder temperatures. These conditions have historically driven higher mortality than above average snow fall.

As the current El Nino conditions weaken, we could see precipitation from the South that has dominated that I-70 split decline significantly. But, this could in turn allow low pressure cold to dominate from the North. While that would bring less precipitation, it could bring colder temps.

Spring looks to have the potential to be drier and colder than normal, which is a good thing. Just like all those additional deer tags.................
 

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Lots of snow this year???? Try close to normal amounts of snow this year. So far, so good. We'll have to see what Feb-April bring.-----SS
This storm is pounding southern utah....right now in Monroe we have around two feet on the ground! I am worried about the snow totals climbing up and up...compared to the past two years, when deer herds did well, this year will be a disaster in my neck of the woods! I can't remember a year when we had so much snow in the valley...and, this is the first year I am having deer in my yard on a nightly basis! if we continue to get snow like we have so far this winter, I am expecting some winter kill this spring!
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
I'll say it AGAIN,
Cold, below normal temp's are far harder on big game than the snow!

Now the turkeys are a another story, they are getting hammered.
It's been a few years since I've seen this many dead birds!,,,,This early!
 

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This storm is not going to be good for any wildlife. It is very deep even in town.
Plus, now it is suppose to get very cold for 2 or 3 days. Not a good combo.
Word is, this is the first snow day for schools in 61 years here. Not sure it that is accurate or not.
Either way, it's a bunch of snow.
 

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Relax you guys.

Option 2 and coyote bounties are keeping everything in check.

But seriously it matters how many predators are out there putting increased stress on those critters in the deer snow.
 

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This storm is not going to be good for any wildlife. It is very deep even in town.
Plus, now it is suppose to get very cold for 2 or 3 days. Not a good combo.
Word is, this is the first snow day for schools in 61 years here. Not sure it that is accurate or not.
Either way, it's a bunch of snow.
What district? I was hoping for a snow day today, but in Sevier School District we didn't get it!
 

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Iron, Beaver, Piute, Millard. All closed today due to snow.

I told my kids last night that Iron County didn't close for snow.
Guess we've gotten soft?

 

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The southern half of the state is sitting at over 150% almost everywhere. This storm laid about a foot and a half in the valleys and a couple feet on the benches. Hopefully there will be a couple weeks here of no storms and decent temps to get rid of a little bit of this. The next couple days are supposed to be cold, but the 10 day forecast looks good.
 

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Ya, I have every bit of that amount in at my house #1 Deer.
My back is sore, shovel all nite at my house, Then come to work and do it again. -O,-
I gotta get me a new sno-blower...........

It does show getting better after a couple of days, next week even shows some days in the 50's here.
That's a big reason I live here. It usually melts off between storms.
 

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No, I looked out my window and it is average.........
 
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I heard the fawn studies from various parts of the State are showing high winter mortality due to starvation. That was before this storm and it will only get worse as the winter keeps it up for the next 2-3 months. The herds are estimated at their highest population in 2-3 decades and now here comes Mother Nature to bring us back to reality. Hopefully it won't be as bad as some fear, but it just might be.....
 

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Around Koosharem the deer have been in 15-20 inches of snow or so for about a month now, and you just added another foot and a half on top of it. The Parkers been buried for a while as well, so I would expect the antelope to take a good hit as well. It's the most snow I've seen in a lot of areas I watch deer during the winter in a long time. I'm hoping for the best, but expecting some pretty bad winter kill with how persistent the snow has been. Like I said temps haven't been real bad with the exception of a couple weeks, but there are places that have been buried in snow for a month now and to add another big storm on top of it, it seems we are in for that reality check.
 
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