Question: “I have always heard the whitetail deer hunting in Mills County can be good. I’ve hunted near this part of Central Texas before when we had a lease just south of San Saba. Currently one of my friends and my brother and I are looking at 320 acre deer lease just southeast of Goldthwaite. Do you have any experience with the deer hunting in this area? We have heard that there are lots of deer, but that they are not very big? What do you got?”
Deer Hunting: That part of Texas can be really good for whitetail deer and often some incidental exotics, as well, though they are few and far between. As you stated, the deer population can be high in certain locations in that part of Central Texas. The deer hunting in Mills County will be best along the major creeks and the Colorado River. Same for the turkey hunting. There will be more deer in the drainage areas, but the quality of animals will depend upon overall management in those areas.
A fellow I went to college with is from Mills County and he used to hunt several ranches in the area. He ended up shooting some really nice bucks, all of which were mature deer. The place he lived on had a high deer density when he was young, but then they developed a deer management plan with the local biologist and the body and antler size increased. Like any place, the real deal is to allow the bucks to mature. If you can get some age on them then you will see and shoot some nice bucks.
A guy I know that has a ranch in northern Coryell County, just south of Mills County, has had great success in managing his place. He has even more control with a high fence, but the deer are all native. That ranch produces 150+ inch deer every year and they get a buck that is 170+ every third year or so. Those numbers will rival most places in Texas. Of course, he has had that piece of real estate under a management program for about 10 years.
Can the deer hunting in Mills County be good? Absolutely, especially if you are located along the river or a major creek. How things play out on your 320 acre deer lease will depend a lot on what the landowner and neighbors are doing though. If the area is overgrazed then the deer quality will suffer. There may be a lot of them, but antler growth will be less than optimal. The buck quality will also depend on what the neighboring lands are shooting or not shooting. Buck quality will take some management, if you and your neighbors are on the same page.
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