The power of one. It’s the idea that any one person can make a difference. There’s certainly truth to that – but I think it’s safe to say that we’d also all agree that the power of a group can take that single person’s action to a whole new level. One person can start a movement – but it’s the group that comes of that which really makes big change. This idea can certainly be seen in the whitetail hunting world today, in the form of Quality Deer Management Co-Ops.
A Co-Op is a group of people in a given area, agreeing to adhere to a given set of deer management practices. If you start practicing QDM on your property it will definitely help the deer hunting situation in your area, but if you can get your neighbors involved – the change will be even more noticeable. That’s really what a cooperative is all about. This co-op idea has really turned into a massive movement across the country, as more and more groups of like minded people are starting to manage their deer herds together. The results have been tangible, impressive and exciting to say the least.
That being said – I’ve joined a co-op here in South Central Michigan and I thought I’d share with the W2H Nation a few examples of what a co-op can produce. As most of you know – Michigan does not typically produce the kind of deer you’ve come to expect from states like Iowa, Illinois or Kansas. In fact, I believe the number I saw was that in 2010, over 60% of all bucks harvested in Michigan were year and half olds! That’s poor. Piss poor. But my feelings on that are for another article, another day. The point I’m trying to make here today is that the average deer killed in Michigan is a year and half old – probably a little 4 or 6 pointer. Now as you look at the bucks being taken by members of the Beebe Creek Co-Op, you’ll see that these deer are quite a bit above that average.
And thats the power of a quality deer management co-op. In a relatively “poor” state for big bucks – a group of people can work together to produce better deer, better habitat and better hunting opportunities. I’d say that’s a win-win any way you look at it!
You can learn more about the Beebe Creek Co-op here in Southern Michigan by clicking the link to their website below. And if you’re interested in starting a co-op of your own – check out the following article from the QDMA website! 7 Steps to a Successful Cooperative