I'm sharing today a few pictures and words by Billy White on FB.
This is why the state had to close the hunting season along the flooded river, 30 miles or so and well over 600 deer and around 250 of them being bucks nears Mayersville, MS, he said.
It was up above Vicksburg, MS, along the MS River. He was using his cell phone and seen 30-40 mountable bucks with 18-inch or better. He also said that anywhere from Chotard to 61N Hwy wouldn't be hunting. Deer are so scared and lost. It would be just like shooting a neighbor's cow. One of the biggest herds he saw was about 1.5 miles from 61N Hwy away from the water (a good ways) but it was around 150 deer in that group with 30-40 bucks in that one group. It is crazy to see so many bucks in one pile like that.
John Sullivan responded - What about the guys 5 miles from there? Their season is closed and these deer are no where near them? MDWFP lazily picked a boundary, there's got to be a better solution. Hunters that get no increase in deer numbers are being penalized by the MDWFP inability to police the areas affected by the flood. Typical government response, take rights away from the innocent instead of punishing the guilty.
The same MDWFP allows farmers along the Mississippi River to kill hundreds of deer via "depredation permits" all summer long. Yet now, the MDWFP is protecting these same deer?
I can understand it in the MS Delta, as there isn't as much woods for the deer to hide. But this last closure south of Vicksburg is a joke. The deer come out of the river bottoms into the hill area, that is just as wooded if not more than the low lying areas from where they come. The season was closed on the day the river crested. The water is actually lower now than the day it closed. Why wait until then to close the season?
Isn't there a limit on deer? Enforce it. Once again a hunter miles from the river had his season ended when his land is in no way affected by the flood.
Ryan Windham responded - What do you suggest then? That the closures be 200 ft from the nearest water and no further?? There has to be a cutoff somewhere....all of those deer that were in say Panther swamp for instance have to go somewhere. That's nearly 40 thousand acres. Those deer are going to go to the nearest block of woods and pile up in it. Do you not think it would be unfair to have 100 acres 1 mile from there where hundreds of deer are going to pile in? It'd be like shooting fish in a barrel man.
Wayne Curran responded - 4 years ago when it flooded the Game Wardens have deer that are monitored with tracking systems and the said one deer went 26 miles from its natural habitat and went right back to where it came from when the river went down.
Not only are the deer having problems but commerce on the MS River at Vicksburg to Natchez-Vidalia is closed to barge traffic. It is a costly traffic jam! Right now north and southbound tows and the boats pushing them are sitting snug against the east and west banks of the MS River as their captains and crews wait for a U.S. Cost Guard notice announcing the river is reopen to traffic. Within the last couple of weeks 5 towboats/containers hit the bridge (Hwy 80) here in Vicksburg with an accident in Natchez. MS River is closed until further notice.
Near I-20 Bridge @ Vicksburg, MS