i dont think it will "make" the bucks bigger, but only allow us to take big ones. this would limit your chances at a big buck because people who would be otherwise satisfied at a smaller one will be forced to take a big one
While letting the little bucks walk may not "Make" them bigger, it will allow them to get a little closer to their genetic potential!
I believe some places in Maine NEED Quality Buck Managment meaning a few less does and allowing bucks to reach 'fork' or 'six-point' levels before harvesting.
This is how I plan to manage my acreage next year when I have more time to devote to food plots, not so much to hunt over but to help the herd become and stay healthy.
12 inch spread? That would make Maine a trophy state for sure and we would lose a bunch of non resident hunters! There would be as much whining as if you made trout anglers release every trout caught for two years.
Something that helps the resource usually creats crybabies!
1st let me say that i love to see big deer. because of that i let several smaller deer walk each year. i get lots of oppurtunity with both bow and rifle so i dont mind. i let one go last year that was marginal, for me, five minutes later a new hunter, 11 year old kid, got his 1st deer. that made it all worth it for me. that being said i think we are restricting ourselves out of hunting. what i mean is if we keep making it harder for the average joe to get his freezer deer, he'll quit, leaving fewer of us to flip the bill. creating more oppurtunity for the wealthier. mainers at the current time are blessed with having alot of "open land", i feel the more restrictions that we install the more pay to hunt places will start popping up. we are seeing more and more posted land that is being saved for the wealthier people who can afford these large tracts of land. i would hate to see us get soooo good at making big deer that we lose more and more oppurtunity to hunt. i might be crazy, well actually i AM crazzy, but this is how i see it.
Not to mention I'm seeing less hunters in the woods every year. Last year was unbelievable. I think it had a lot to do with gas prices and a poor bird season up North. There just weren't as many guys out in the woods. I tend to become a lot less selective when the season winds down. I just love that venison.