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TheOldPro

Losing a Good Hunting Spot

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I'm losing about 300 acres next door to me that I have hunted on for over 50 years. The man that owned it died about 5 years ago, and I was wondering how long his daughter would hold on to it. Now I know. It's right across the fence from my house, and all I had to do was climb through the barbed wire to start coyote or dove hunting. It has two tanks on it, both great for dove. It was also useful for letting my grandson hit golf balls into when I was teaching him the golf swing. About two weeks ago, bulldozers showed up and started ripping out fences and trees. I'm hoping the big cattle company down the road is buying it, but this could be the start of a subdivision. Either way, a great hunting spot is gone forever. I still have a few places left to hunt, but none so convenient as this one. I've been seeing this happen a lot in this area....the old landowner dies, and his heirs split up the property to the point there's not much left to hunt on after the ones who have no real interest in the property except for what they can sell it for sell it, usually for house sites. The more this happens, the higher the price of hunting anywhere will become, at least in Texas. I think that cost, not anti-hunters, will be the downfall of hunting in the not-to-far-off future. I don't believe it is a battle we can win.

 

OP

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Hope you don't get hit with the HF Plague! Our lease in Comanche got hit last year and again this year with an 8 mile high fence on our east side and the ranch to our immediate south border. It seems Frosty Gillam from Odessa needed to spend some of his multi-billion dollars! They already have exotics on the east ranch - gemsbok, sika, and red deer so far!

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I hate to hear that. And sadly, you are right: habitat destruction is the greatest enemy of hunting -- and not only due to the obvious but the the premium prices then being charged for the available leases. With so little public land in the state, far too Texas hunters have no place to go.

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We had a neighbor that bought a place next to us . They would sit and drink coffee and watch the deer feed at the tree line . so in order to see the deer better , they cleared back about 200 acres . Guess what , no more deer to watch , except at long range . City folks just don't understand .

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Sorry to hear that OP!

 

The high cost of leases in Texas has driven up the price of leases in southern Oklahoma......which has driven up lease prices in the rest of the state as guys from the south look for places to hunt.....it has been cheaper for Texas residents to pay the out of state license fees and lease property in Oklahoma than to lease a place in Texas...it doesn't go over well with the Oklahoma guys that are priced out of the market for leases they have had for years.

 

That's the way things are going all over, you want to play, you got to pay.

 

I'm just glad we were fortunate enough to find our place before land prices got stupid!! We bought the place in 1998 and it is now worth more than 10 times what we paid.......couldn't buy it now.

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What is the most discouraging to me is that my kids and grandkids probably are going to end up without a place to hunt unless they want to come up with $5000 to $10,000 for a lease ten or fifteen years from now. They are casual hunters now, as in they like to go out with me now and then, but I don't see any compulsion to hunt in them, as it was with me and with my dad. That won't cut it when big money is expected. I think that the family tradition will end when I die. As far as buying your own hunting land now, who is going to sign for a million dollar loan on a hundred acres with trees and a few deer on it, even if you could find land for "only" $10,000 per acre? That's what cheap land is going for around here. Although I realize there will be individual exceptions to the rule, I don't like what I see coming. An era is ending, and may have already ended for many. I probably won't be around to see what happens, and that's just as well. I don't think I want to.

 

OP

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I guess I am just fortunate, as most all the places I hunt close to the house are fixed to where if one family member wants to sell they all have to agree. No way that will happen in my lifetime on about 1,200 acres I have permission for, and another 2,500 or so my 2 main hunting buddies own or have permission for us to hunt.

 

Sadly there are more folks my age who would rather have the cash than the land and other property filled with memories, which could be added to by memories made with their kids, grandkids, or even great-grandkids..............people are just too short sighted, lazy, or greedy to keep what took such work to gain, and in some cases much blood was spilled to hold onto!

 

Cal

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Cal, I hope your luck holds on your hunting places. However, around here in the last 10 years I have seen one hostile divorce and a scheming lawyer break up property about the size you are hunting on that no one around here ever expected to be divided. The plaintiff wife, who was not blood-related, sued to get her share of what her former husband inherited from his deceased father, even though the mother was still living. In this litigious society, I don't think anything is really safe. It's all just a matter of time. Hopefully you will have a lot longer there.

Right now, I have several other tracts that I can hunt on, the largest being a little over 400 acres. However, the owner died in 2012, and his wife is 96 years old. She still has all the property in her name at this time, but she had 3 sons, only 1 of which is still alive, and the grown kids of the 2 dead heirs are chomping at the bits to get their hands on their 1/3 of that property. By the time they get through dividing up their 2/3's of the property, not a one of them will have more than 35 or 40 acres each. It won't be used for hunting. Fortunately, the living son is a good friend of mine, and will come out with about 140 intact acres, and he won't sell, at least not right now. However, the situation will never be the same, and after the house-building starts around his part, the actual huntable area will not be all that much. It's sad but inevitable. Not trying to be a smart-aleck here, but when you turn 72, let me know how much of that 1200 acres you hunt on is still intact. My forecast is that it won't be. I also forecast that you will have a hard time getting in touch with me then.

 

OP

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Bwana, make her an offer on the land, let her remain. Or you could propose to her and inherit it when you become a widower. :D

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Bwana, make her an offer on the land, let her remain. Or you could propose to her and inherit it when you become a widower. :D

Except for bigamy laws in the state of Texas, that might not be a bad idea.

 

OP

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@TheOldPro, honey we need a divorce so I can marry this old crow and inherit the land, we can re-marry after she croaks :D

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