Helicopter surveys are used for obtaining deer populations and other wildlife (exotics, predators and deer) which helps you obtain the following information (estimating density, sex ratios, and fawn survival, and age and wildlife distribution) which is necessary for developing harvest recommendations based on goals. Before an aerial survey can be conducted a “Landowners Authorization Form” must be filled out prior to the day of the survey and a permit must be issued by Texas Parks and Wildlife.
The aerial helicopter census provides the most accurate survey data, especially for low brush areas such as south, north and western Texas counties. Although this method is not totally accurate (research has shown it to range from 25 to 75 percent accurate) research has also shown it is the most accurate and consistent of the above mentioned methods.
Helicopter surveys are flown in transects. Total counts are considered the best when conditions allow. Total counts involve flying in a systematic transect that allows the entire property to be completely observed. On larger properties, individual pastures are flown separately and usually treated as individual management units. Due to the versatility of the helicopter, observers can learn more about an area in a shorter period of time than by any other census method. This method provides better sex ratio data and fawn survival estimates because it allows the observer to see a large number of animals in a short period of time. The helicopter survey method is considered the most expensive method economically, but is less labor and time restrictive than the spotlight count method.
Helicopter surveys allow the landowner/manager to determine the following:
1. Buck to Doe Ratio
2. Fawn Production
3. Antler Development of Bucks
4. Distribution of Animals on Ranch
5. Vegetative Condition of Ranch
6. Location of Deer for Harvest.
We perform Wildlife Captures, including: DMP Captures, TTT Captures and TTP.
DMP – Deer Management Program
Deer Management Permit authorizes owners of high fenced properties to temporarily detain white-tailed deer in breeding pens located on the property for the purpose of natural breeding. Deer may not be detained for purposes that do not include natural breeding (i.e. “soft release” of bred TTT deer.) Participation in the DMP program requires a Deer Management plan that must be approved and signed by an authorized Wildlife Biologist or Technician. Contact Texas Parks and Wildlife today to get started in this program.
TTT – Trap, Transport and Transplant Permits
if your property currently has a very low deer density, you may be eligible for a TTT permit. This permit allows for the capture and movement of wild deer from one property to another. The main purpose of this permit is for restocking efforts. However, in certain cases it may provide a great jump start to the genetics of your native herd.
TTP – Trap, Transplant and Process Permits
The Trap, Transport & Process is a mechanism to help reduce deer population in areas where white-tailed deer are overpopulated. Through the use of this permit, areas with surplus white-tailed deer can capture surplus deer, process their carcasses, and donate the resulting venison to penal facilities or charitable organizations for human consumption.
Predator Control is a necessary tool in any successful Wildlife Management program and can be performed from one of our state of the art helicopters.
Predator Control is closely monitored by the Texas Parks and Wildlife. Predators are an integral part of an ecosystem; it is sometimes desirable to control their numbers just as it is a deer population. Implementation of a predator control program may be an effective tool in protecting some wildlife species.) While predator control is a necessary part of any management program it is very different from sport hunting (Anytime money or anything of value changes hands for the privilege to hunt any animal from the aircraft, other than a authorized agent of the ranch, it will likely be considered to be sport hunting.)
Animals that can be controlled by aircraft are feral hogs, coyotes, and bobcats.
Zach was raised on a ranch in South Texas and has been flying for over 11 yrs. Zach was taught to fly and gather cattle by the best in the business. He not only flies, but can also ride and do work on horse back.
So call us at 361-701-1225 to help you with any of these services.