What is wrong with Wisconsin Hunters?

coleslaw

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Jun 13, 2018
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425
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Wisconsin
Two days later another couple hunters with Wisconsin
Just saw this article. Doesn't surprise me one bit after what happened to us. I really don't have anything against non resident hunters coming to Montana as long as they follow the rules and behave ethically. In fact, for the most part I find that non resident big game hunters tend to be better behaved than a lot of locals.

It's all about tradition here in WI. Every year 1 or 2 hunters mistakes an Elk for a deer too. Part of the reason I no longer rifle hunt in WI is because of our public land mentality. A lot of party hunts and deer drives. We have more than our fair share of wasted deer too. Not hard to find gutshot deer rotting in a creek. We've even found deer carcasses used as target practice and left to rot.
I do think that we have more incidents like this in the upper midwest due to the fact that most states here only have a 1 week rifle season where upwards of half a million hunters are cramming their season into one opening weekend. It does get a little crazy out here with the opening weekend party mentality and I do get pretty disgusted with it sometimes. We also have a saying around here that everyone is best friends with their neighbor until deer season.

I will say though, that probably 95% of all hunters here are ethical and usually pleasant to deal with. Just like anywhere else, it's the 5% that ruin it for everyone and leave that lasting "bastard non-resident/ yahoo road hunter / drunk a**hole" impression. I will also say that in all of the states I have hunted, I have seen just as many, if not more residents doing things equally as dumb or head scratching as NR's.
 
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trb

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Aug 29, 2019
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Colorado
That is an absolutely wild story, and has always been one of my biggest fears in CO. I proactively avoid 2nd and 3rd seasons largely for that reason.

I have seriously considered switching careers to be a game warden in CO simply because game violations piss me off to no end. The pay doesn't bother me as I already earn jack sh*t as a teacher, even though that trainee salary @Oak listed would still be a pay cut. One of the biggest obstacles for me is the uncertainty of location. Pretty sure my wife would not be stoked if I told her I'm taking a pay cut, and by the way we are moving to Moffat.
 

tkhuntsman

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Nov 15, 2022
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Helena, MT
Stupidity isn't completely isolated to nonresidents. I was deer hunting on a WMA and noticed another vehicle with MT plates in the lot I parked as far away as I could and hiked in what I hoped was the opposite direction. Got about a half mile in and saw the other guy ahead of me along the ditch and decided to just sit and wait and see where he was going to go and then decide on my next move. He crossed the ditch and started heading north so I figured I'd give him a half hour and head south. I was glassing some deer to my south when I heard a funny noise to my right and looked over to see the other "hunter" kneeling facing me with his gun up and about that time a whitetail doe come running dead center between us he was maybe 80 yards from me and the deer was roughly 30. When that deer was directly in line he fired a shot that hit the tree I had sat against I dove into the snow and rolled to the left he proceeded to shoot 2 more rounds in my relative vicinity missed the deer all 3 times I stood up and yelled what the #@*$ are you doing he stood up looked at me looked towards the deer and took off running along the ditch to the north. He circled around and drove away immediately. I've been back out there 3 or 4 more times because there's a lot of good deer and I haven't seen his vehicle since unfortunately I didn't get his plate number. I'm just glad I didn't have one of the kids with me that day. He knew I was there and had zero ethics and some kind of tunnel vision when he saw the deer I guess.
 

JT13

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Jul 13, 2017
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PA
Me and my wife were hunting a walk-in area back in 2017 on our first DIY Wyoming pronghorn and mule deer trip, antlerless only. The particular WMA was recommended by Top-gun 3006, may he rest in peace.

There were all manner of deer just across the road on different private but none where we could hunt. We walked in and ran into an older gentleman and a young 10 year old boy, turns out they were the neighbors. The boy had just killed his first deer, a whitetail doe. They directed us towards a particular section of fence way in the back of the property between a creek bottom and an alfalfa field, he said it was the best place to sit. It was about a 3/4 mile walk. We had a piece of camo burlap with us and put it up around us and the fence post as a make-shift ground blind.

He was right, about an hour later we saw all kinds of game. Pheasants, whitetail, mule deer... you name it. Around the same time those deer that were across the road decided to come on to the walk-in area. They weren't there for 15 minutes before a truck with Wyoming plates screeched to a halt and a "hunter" bailed out. He shot at least three deer from the road using the utility pole as a gun rest.

The shooter, a buddy, and a kid then drove their truck out into the planted field, tossed the deer in the back, and took off. It didn't look like their first rodeo. I called the game warden and reported it. A description of the truck, date, and location was all I could provide. He wasn't suprised a bit and honestly seemed like it was a pretty normal activity.

All was not lost on our hunt however. About another hour later and we had deer heading out into the alfalfa again. My wife killed her first deer with a rifle and I followed up with one of my own. Spent the night packing them out and butchering them in the back of a rental van. Other than the WY roadhunters, it's one of my fondest hunting memories.
 

EKYHunter

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Dec 13, 2020
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996
I love hunting but other hunters, not so much. Unfortunately, butt headedness knows no boundaries and doesn’t have a residency requirement.
 

tillicant

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Jan 26, 2021
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201
Location
SE WI
I hunt public during the WI seasons, mostly for meat. My wife will gladly hunt with me in Colorado but seems like whenever or wherever she hunts she has someone walk into her. She wears full blaze orange, they still walk right into her.
I very seldom see another hunter in the woods, oh, but I know they are there.
This doesn't just happen in WI. idiots everywhere.
 

maxracx

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Jun 20, 2020
Messages
180
Location
Mosinee WI
I was out in central Montana hunting for deer last week and had a couple unpleasant encounters with two groups of hunters from Wisconsin. The first two guys parked right next to my truck about 1/2 and hour after we started hiking and followed our tracks in the snow behind us. They ended up seeing us at our glassing location and cut around us to walk right through the bedding area we were glassing. They went in on the upwind side and blew out all the deer. Later that morning we saw them shoot a fork horn mule deer about a mile further down the drainage. They walked up to the deer took a few pictures then started walking back to their truck. We figured they were going to get a sled or game cart, but no, they decided to drive right in to the deer. This was a big chunk of state land that was clearly marked as walk in only. They even had to cut the wired shut gate to get in there . I called the warden and left a message with their vehicle info and offered to send some pictures and video his way but haven't heard back.

Two days later another couple hunters with Wisconsin plates parked right behind us and started following us in again. When we got to our glassing location we spotted a decent buck that my friend wanted to shoot. We were about 800 yards from him and quickly started to cut the distance. There was a big bowl we crossed to get to a little hill about 250 yards from the buck. When we were just about to start to peak over the hill I spotted the two Wisconsin hunters sitting where we had just left. There isn't a single tree in-between where we were and where they were. We were wearing orange vests and hats. I could see them plain as day and I made the assumption that they would see us as well. Just as we were cresting the hill rounds started wizzing past us. Some sounded like they were just feet away. We hit the dirt and started yelling at them as loud as we could. They kept firing. One round struck the ground about 6 feet from my friend. I was very close to returning fire. After 6-7 shots in our direction the shooting stopped and we decided to head over to them and confront them. They must have decided that we looked pretty pissed and quickly hauled but back to their truck.

Just saw this article. Doesn't surprise me one bit after what happened to us. I really don't have anything against non resident hunters coming to Montana as long as they follow the rules and behave ethically. In fact, for the most part I find that non resident big game hunters tend to be better behaved than a lot of locals.

Theat, I am sorry to hear about your bad experiences but please don't paint ALL Wisconsin hunters with the same brush as the A-holes you experienced. I can assure you most of us are common sense, law abiding sportsman like most on this forum. The state of WI packs almost 800K hunters in the field at one time all looking for that big buck and yes accidents do happen. 6 in 800000 = .0000075%. One hunting accident is too many but the percentages are very low. We have a fantastic hunters safety program that gets kids started young. We try to teach more than hunters safety in the classes I have been involved. We teach ethics, sportsmanship, as will as safety. I hope the wardens are able to find the guys that you had issues with. Best of luck in your next hunting adventure.
 

hank4elk

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Jan 8, 2015
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SW NM
Had to wait to look at this one...a buddy is in WI, and one of the few people I will hunt WITH. Going to share with him later.
Was a Park Ranger for 20 years and my best friend was a warden for 35. Neither job paid what it was worth,IMHO. The stories I could tell...
That said when I moved to NM I was offered a G&F job for what I could get as a beginning seasonal part timer in the county I retired from.
And no one can pass a background check here it seems....but the bright side is you get 2500 sq miles all to yourself to enforce.

OK plates.
Seen them from all over ,good and bad.
13 years here and it had been AZ & NM outfitters driving around the tourists that I avoided. OR just the NM hunters.
The last two years it has been the same with Tejas plates leading the mess. They poached out early this year and left ruts all over the state & BLM lands.....

Happy to just hunt my place with a unit wide draw tag for a cow, again.
Carry on.
 

Slm864

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Mar 30, 2019
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Pennsylvania
Standby, Pennsylvania gun season starts in about 30 minutes. Shouldn’t take long for the first jackass in a Ford Focus to start ripping shots out the window at deer 300 yards away running through a field.
 

thusby

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Apr 2, 2019
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Greater Milwaukee Area
2 Wisconsin guys 1000 yards off the road…. mule deer doe around 400 yards off road…. 4 Montana plates on the road.
8 guys dump about 30 rounds at the doe while the 2 Wisconsin guys spread em.
My Conclusion: Wisconsin guys rented 4 trucks in Bozeman.
 

tzone

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Aug 6, 2018
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MN for now
They are a plague here. Rude, law breaking, unsafe. I have never seen anything like it.They tresspass, shoot from the roads, cut off other hunters, argue with land owners, etc.
My hunting buddies, rancher friends and guides I know all have negative experiences with Wisconson folks... lots of them.
It's like they all get training on being mindless thugs prior to coming West.
No kidding. I bet 95% of violations and negative experiences we observe are by Wisconson people.
Pretty much what they do in their home state too.

I've called the warden 2 times to where we hunt just so we didn't get pinned since we were out of staters. That said, MN is not much better.
 

tzone

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Aug 6, 2018
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MN for now
What about having a system where someone can be reported for unethical behavior that's not necessarily illegal and lose their ability to apply for a tag in the future?
Ok Karen. lol

How exactly would you determine who's ethical and who's not. Which set of ethics are we going by? Yours? Mine? Hers? His?
 

TimeOnTarget

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Feb 13, 2015
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SD
Wisconsin plates are always on my radar here as well.

Just this past weekend there 3 WI trucks 2 of the 3 were parked right on the Hwy as they walked some public for pheasants. They could have easily just pulled down into the ditch and off the highway.
 
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