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#3823820 - 12/06/12 11:20 PM exotics at Hill Country state natural area- bandera tx
okjhutch Offline
Pro Tracker

Registered: 09/19/11
Posts: 1152
we had a group draw out for the hog hunt at the hill country state natural area in january. They said we would be allowed to take exotics. My question is: what kind of exotics do they have and is there enough to hunt or a huntable herd, or is there just a few in one herd that stay in a particular area if so what area. We are coming from oklahoma,so it will be a long trip, i dont mind shooting the hogs but would love to bag some exotics on this long trip. If it is only going to be hogs, i can stay home and shoot a truck load of them, i am more interested in the exotics.

Any help from anyone down there or hunted there would be nice infro going into this.

Do they have a loge to stay at?if so whats the story on it?

thanks
jimmie

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#3823850 - 12/06/12 11:44 PM Re: exotics at Hill Country state natural area- bandera tx [Re: okjhutch]
chital_shikari Offline
Minor in training
THF Trophy Hunter

Registered: 08/03/11
Posts: 9120
Loc: In a HF
Axis probably
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Originally Posted By: Roo Basher
Chital for the win!

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#3824070 - 12/07/12 07:11 AM Re: exotics at Hill Country state natural area- bandera tx [Re: chital_shikari]
don k Offline
THF Trophy Hunter

Registered: 08/27/08
Posts: 6447
Loc: Bandera, Tx
I live about probably 8 miles straight across from there.If it is like here no you don't see exotics all the time. Sometimes there are lots of axis and sometimes you can go a month and not see any. Of the exotics most are axis. I once saw a fallow doe,once a sika buck and once a very large aoudad. Also once caught a small aoudad in a snare. as for hogs it is not a guarantee on them. Most of them are wilder than the deer and do most of their moving at night. There are motels and places to stay in Bandera and a dude or guest ranch near the narural area. I am not trying to dampen your spirits , but like you say it is a long way to travel for a hog. And some times Jan. weather gets a little brisk here. Good luck on what you decide.
_________________________
Donald Koenig
ibexgoats.com

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#3824200 - 12/07/12 07:55 AM Re: exotics at Hill Country state natural area- bandera tx [Re: don k]
safdm44 Offline
Tracker

Registered: 08/03/10
Posts: 830
Loc: Texas
I hunted there two seasons ago on a trophy buck hunt archery only... .saw 0 exotics... they just put that in there because there is just above 0% chance you might see one passing through... I do not believe any live on the place, just pass through.. for what the warden told us that hunt was maybe axis passing through and some spanish goats were killed before... and you might see a mouflon, they have been seen but none taken.. I was only hunter out of about 33 that harvested a buck with my bow and it was a spike... I did see a nice eight pointer but he did not come in... I never saw any hogs or sign of hogs...Not to get you down.. but I would concentrate on the exotics and if a hog comes by..then consider... Also they would not let us drive to our spots... only once to set up... then it was walking from there on out, because it is a Natural Area.. they dont want vehicles driving in and out disturbing the fauna....so what ever compartment you draw get to the area that is farthest from public/vehicle traffic. GOOD LUCK!
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website is under construction still
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#3824526 - 12/07/12 09:30 AM Re: exotics at Hill Country state natural area- bandera tx [Re: safdm44]
TxAg Offline
Veteran Tracker

Registered: 01/15/07
Posts: 2432
Loc: Hunt in Llano Co.
Like others have said, I've always heard that Exotics at Hill Co SNA are a crap shoot at best. Spoken to several folks who have hunted there and none report seeing any.
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#3825937 - 12/07/12 04:56 PM Re: exotics at Hill Country state natural area- bandera tx [Re: TxAg]
Mde4Him Offline
Light Foot

Registered: 10/15/12
Posts: 47
Loc: Tomball, Texas
Not to get your spirits down... but you should probably know just ahead of time.

I have hunted in the state natural area, and in bandera, and near Medina, all i can say is; if you're going for hogs, you probably wont see any.
There is a couple groups of hogs that move around in the bandera area. Both usually remain about 17 consistently. The boars don't usually stick around for long they mostly wander off by themselves, leave the sows and their piglets alone.

As far as axis go there is a sizable herd, I have hunted near the same area n between Bandera & Medina for about three years and never have got a pattern for the herd. They are VERY migratory and wont stay in the same area after a shots been taken for about 1-2 weeks.
Taken three does from the same herd, there IS a very large buck with the herd but he never comes out to feed at a feeder, and ironically he will only come to bales of alfalfa. The ironic things is I've seen him about 20 times with my gun and about 50 times with my camera.
Never have been able to get a shot off at him, he's always been to skittish but every time i do photo "safaris" with my camera he ALWAYS comes out to eat and play around with the does.
Good Luck
_________________________
"For who is God besides the Lord? And who is the Rock except for God? It is God who arms me with strength, and makes my way perfect... He trains my hands for battle; so my arms can bend a bow of bronze." {Psalms 18:31-34}

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#3825977 - 12/07/12 05:08 PM Re: exotics at Hill Country state natural area- bandera tx [Re: Mde4Him]
txtrophy85 Offline
THF Celebrity

Registered: 08/12/05
Posts: 19333
I've hunted quite a bit in bandera and in medina...we always saw axis. Hogs were also quite plentiful.

I know further south of tarpley near the natural area, there arn't as many exotics, but the hog population on the ranches I have been on have been pretty decent.

I haven't hunted in the SNA so I can't help you there.

Oklahoma is a long way to come for a draw hunt in texas. hope it goes well for you

a buddy of mine owns a place next to the RV park on 470 and he sees alot of axis....and I see alot of axis in the river in tarpley.

i would ask the staff questions. Remeber the only thing that lives up in the high rough hills are sheep. Everything else, especailly axis, like the bottoms and meadows. If its cold, axis will be on east facing slopes first think in the morning trying to heat up.

one problem that you will run into are most people in texas feed, and they don't on a SNA. animals will go where to food is. may make sense to set up next to private property and catch animals crossing back and forth


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#3826195 - 12/07/12 06:36 PM Re: exotics at Hill Country state natural area- bandera tx [Re: txtrophy85]
don k Offline
THF Trophy Hunter

Registered: 08/27/08
Posts: 6447
Loc: Bandera, Tx
Originally Posted By: txtrophy85
I've hunted quite a bit in bandera and in medina...we always saw axis. Hogs were also quite plentiful.

I know further south of tarpley near the natural area, there arn't as many exotics, but the hog population on the ranches I have been on have been pretty decent.

I haven't hunted in the SNA so I can't help you there.

Oklahoma is a long way to come for a draw hunt in texas. hope it goes well for you

a buddy of mine owns a place next to the RV park on 470 and he sees alot of axis....and I see alot of axis in the river in tarpley.

i would ask the staff questions. Remeber the only thing that lives up in the high rough hills are sheep. Everything else, especailly axis, like the bottoms and meadows. If its cold, axis will be on east facing slopes first think in the morning trying to heat up.

one problem that you will run into are most people in texas feed, and they don't on a SNA. animals will go where to food is. may make sense to set up next to private property and catch animals crossing back and forth

Where on 470 is your friend?

Not right after you cross the bridge off Hwy. 16 onto 470?
_________________________
Donald Koenig
ibexgoats.com

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#3826224 - 12/07/12 06:43 PM Re: exotics at Hill Country state natural area- bandera tx [Re: don k]
txtrophy85 Offline
THF Celebrity

Registered: 08/12/05
Posts: 19333
lol, next to the carribean cowboy resort

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#3826263 - 12/07/12 06:50 PM Re: exotics at Hill Country state natural area- bandera tx [Re: txtrophy85]
don k Offline
THF Trophy Hunter

Registered: 08/27/08
Posts: 6447
Loc: Bandera, Tx
Do what? I am on 470 about a mile and a half from Hwy 16. I was wondering if your friend was P. K. ?
_________________________
Donald Koenig
ibexgoats.com

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#3826280 - 12/07/12 06:54 PM Re: exotics at Hill Country state natural area- bandera tx [Re: don k]
txtrophy85 Offline
THF Celebrity

Registered: 08/12/05
Posts: 19333
Originally Posted By: don k
Do what? I am on 470 about a mile and a half from Hwy 16. I was wondering if your friend was P. K. ?


no sir. he is about 2 miles before you get to tarpley on 470

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#3831696 - 12/09/12 09:41 PM Re: exotics at Hill Country state natural area- bandera tx [Re: txtrophy85]
okjhutch Offline
Pro Tracker

Registered: 09/19/11
Posts: 1152
I want to thank you all for the infromation, keep it rolling.

I have noticed that over the last 10 years that the Hill country SNA has not been very consitent about listing the option of exotics. Matter of fact they had a couple of years they did not even list that option. It has made me think they really did not have any there, except for the few that may pass thru so they had to at least list the option to take them. I have hunted around that area and seen alot of Axis and black bucks, not very many fallow, sikas, aoudads or red stags. Heard people talk about goats and other species of sheep but never seen any of them.

I use to live in Ft.Worth and was able to make those trips down south at least twice a year, but since i moved up here in oklahoma those trips have gotten long and wear me out more, but that part of getting older. My dad is one of the guys in our group and is 70 and has not had the chance to take an exotic yet. I took him down south in the areas with exotics a couple of years and did some stand bys' but never got lucky enough to draw out that way. I have had taken a few axis on some of the hunts i have been on, and they are some of the best eating animal i have had. It would be great to bag a few does for the freezer. I have been to Kerr, South Llano, Garner, Honey Creek and Pedernales Falls. Took some thing at each one except Pedernales did not really see any thing there, so made me even wonder if they had exotics at Pedernales Falls. I figure they had to list them since there was a chance one might see something as it passed thru. I tryed to get in at Enchanted Rock but struck out and so i spent a day driving around the E. rock trying to find another spot to catch a hunt and never seen any exotics any where around the E. rock, so i wonder if they had a huntable herd in that area.

I may have to just pay up and hunt these high dollar exotic game ranches. Thinking about taking my dad and my 2 sons down in May for a exotic hunt for my oldest sons graduation gift, does any one have any suggestions on a place down there, I dont have to have any big trophys, just the chance to take a few for my sons and dad. A cull hunt would even be good. If you all could let me know which ranches to stay away from would be good to, so i dont waste my time and money.

Thanks to everyone for the information, it is greatly appreciated. It's hard to do any recon down there on a regular basis since i live up in oklahoma now. Have a merry christmas and a safe new years.

hutch

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#3833016 - 12/10/12 11:03 AM Re: exotics at Hill Country state natural area- bandera tx [Re: okjhutch]
txtrophy85 Offline
THF Celebrity

Registered: 08/12/05
Posts: 19333
For what you described, I would call kent creek ranch in Leakey.

Lots of exotics, beautiful country and not too far

I think there website is www.kentcreekranch.com

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#3833493 - 12/10/12 01:20 PM Re: exotics at Hill Country state natural area- bandera tx [Re: txtrophy85]
Bandera Hunter Offline
Outdoorsman

Registered: 01/01/11
Posts: 56
Loc: San Antonio, TX
My lease shares a fenceline with the SNA. I rarely see any exotics. I have hunted my place since 1998 and I have seen audad twice, mouflon three times and that is it. I have never seen axis although a guy on the lease saw one once before I came on the lease. Plenty of hogs as long as you are near water.

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#3840953 - 12/12/12 01:15 PM Re: exotics at Hill Country state natural area- bandera tx [Re: Bandera Hunter]
Fire1 Offline
Bird Dog

Registered: 01/03/05
Posts: 359
Hutch, I'd love to hear about your experience at South Llano. My son and I are doing out first ever draw hunt there at the end of Jan and I'm digging for any intel I can find.

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