RAVENNA ARSENAL Deer numbers crunching

Working under tight security restrictions at the Ravenna Army Ammunition Plant in 2001, a spokesman for the site said the arsenal had the following deer hunting results:
A total of 207 hunter days with 138 military hunters who took 40 does, 14 button bucks, and four bucks (spikes and single spikes).
"The entire hunt strategy is based on a lot of number crunching Tim [Morgan, environmental supervisor] does, with data provided by a number of surveys we perform annually. His number crunching is actually very accurate data evaluation based on proven deer herd management practices, not voodoo math," said Lt. Colonel Tom Tadsen, commander of the Ravenna military installation, properly called the Ravenna Training and Logistics Site.
"Tim's archived database tracks harvest results and other data all the way back to 1955."
According to that database, in that time frame, there were lean years such as 1970 and '71 when one and seven deer were harvested, respectively, and very good years such as 1985 and 1995 when 1,315 and 1,652 deer were harvested, respectively.
Tadsen added that currently ODOW performs a post-hunt helicopter deer count in February each year. Also, RTLS personnel and volunteer hunt escorts compute field-dressed weight of each harvested deer, number of points and antler beam diameter (for bucks), gender, age by dentition, and general health (check for parasites, etc.).
"We perform a nine-team car-deer survey in late August to determine recruitment and gender ratios in the herd," he said.
-- Mike Braun

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