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South Texas Year Round Deer Lease

This Hunting Lease is Available
South Texas Year Round Deer Lease

Hunting Lease

Contact Name: Virgil Alexander

Contact Email: Click here to email

Contact Phone: (512) 848-1088

Mobile Phone: (512) 848-1088

Area: Zavala

Preferred Customer: Individual

Acres: 4100

Amenities / Additional Info: Livestock on PropertyGuests AllowedAlcohol AllowedShelter on PropertyGame ManagedFishing AllowedWater on Property

Scroll down for more information

Additional Information

Overview:

This is an 8 gun ranch (total), 3 of those spots are available. I am one of the 8 guns.

This is a 4,100 acre year round lease in Zavala County south of La Pryor and north of Crystal City. Classic South Texas mesquite brush country, lots of drainage, rolling terrain. The property has about 3.5 miles of Nueces River frontage. There is a dam about 4 miles downstream that creates a small lake (reservoir). We are on the top end of this reservoir and it makes our river frontage approximately 40 yards wide and 20 feet deep. In the peak of the drought we were still fishing it out of a boat. The water is a clear/blue/green color, not muddy like most rivers that you find in South Texas. It is perfect for taking the kids swimming in the summer, launching a canoe/kayak, or tying out limb lines if you like big catfish. The river bottom supports an entirely different ecosystem than the brush and has huge live oak trees, some of which are over 5’ in diameter at the trunk.

There are 4 tanks and the fishing is great. Several black bass approaching 8 lbs have been caught, 4 kids with night crawlers and bobbers can land about a dozen 2 lb. channel cats in less than an hour. You can load up a John Boat with Crappie, Bass, & Catfish on the river.

There is a 160 acre field by the river that can be irrigated (irrigation is unusual in South Texas). We have planted oats in the past in this field and others. In 2011 the owners planted oats for us in fields and openings all over the ranch.

I have hunted this ranch for the last 7 seasons. The owners and their family could not be nicer people and their desire is to establish long term relationships with quality hunters who are respectful to them and to their property. Any hunters who can fit that mold will have the opportunity to hunt on their ranch for a long, long time. The opportunity for longevity is invaluable to anyone who is looking for a new lease.

The base lease cost is $7,950 per gun. There are additional camp expenses that are split by the group (electric, insurance, all feeder corn, protein, biologist fees, maintenance, etc.). If you sign up for this lease, you will be required to pay $2,750 to our camp account for your portion of the expenses for the year. If there are any surplus funds in the camp expense account at the end of the year then those funds are redistributed to the group. I oversee the feeders and make sure they are operational. You will be required to contribute 2 corn feeders and 2 protein feeders (protein feeders must be at least 1,000 lb. capacity). We may request that you contribute a blind at some point. All corn/protein feed pens are built and in place (17 total). All hunting locations are established. All members have equal access to all hunting locations.

We have an open guest policy on this ranch and lease members do not need to sit in the blind with their guests, but lease members are responsible for their guest’s actions and for any game that is harvested by their guest. Guests can shoot management bucks, does, etc. A lease member may bring multiple guests, but we are limited to 12 adults on the ranch at one time so we just have to coordinate with each other when we are bringing people down so we don’t overfill camp (I don’t believe that we have ever had more than 10 hunters on the ranch at one time so overcrowding has never been an issue). Kids are welcomed and encouraged; we have no set limit as to how many children can be on the ranch at one time. The owner has offered to saddle up horses for children on occasion, and we have the opportunity to arrange access to horses and riding equipment by contributing something to the owners feed costs. Keeping your own horse on the property could possibly be arranged (for a fee).

We operate under a MLD Level 3 Permit. This extends “rifle season” for bucks and does from Oct. 1st – Feb. 28th, doe harvest may be limited after the rut. The MLD also allows/requires hunters to use tags provided by the TPWD. Under MLDP Level 3, any one individual may harvest many more than 5 deer per season which is the traditional individual tag limit.

We are a management minded group and it is expected that any trophies taken are Post Mature (6.5 years old and older). We have harvest guidelines for management deer that will be provided to those that are interested in this lease.

Murphy Ray is our wildlife biologist and he guides our program. Murphy Ray and Al Brothers co-authored “Producing Quality Whitetails” in 1973. This landmark book sparked the QDM movement nationwide. His research and program implementation has been highly respected for decades.

This is a low fence ranch. The west boundary is HWY 83 and the ranch across the highway is the Zacate. The Zacate is a high fenced ranch and is the south neighbor to the Chaparrosa. Its fence sets back about 400 yards off the highway and runs parallel to our fence line. The north neighbor is a 5,000 acre pasture out of the Mac Pryor Ranch. This north neighbor is leased by a 12 gun group of 6 bow hunters and 6 rifle hunters. The north neighbor has been managed for 17 years; they consistently shoot 2-4 deer over 160 B&C each year. The ranch which is on the west end of our south fence line is rarely hunted and this property is wild and raw. The neighbor on the east end of the south fence line leases to hunters that we have seen hunting our fence line; we consider this neighbor a bad neighbor concerning management. The east boarder is the river which is deep & wide and is probably as good as a high fence. Overall, out of the 14 miles of fence line that surrounds the ranch, I would say that about 80% of it is occupied with “good” neighbors or has a boundary that is similar to a high fence.

This will be our 8th year feeding protein and we have 16 protein feeding locations (one per 256 acres). We have completed 7 years of herd management. During that time we have harvested 139 Does, 129 Management Bucks, & 6 Trophy Bucks. The best Trophy taken scored 171 B&C and was a natural 13 point with a drop. Last season (2012) we harvested a 165” eleven point and a 158” eight point. The doe to buck ratio has consistently been 1.5 Does: 1 Buck. The herd density has been estimated at 1 deer per 15 acres. When we took the lease in 2006, the ranch had been basically not hunted for decades (probably not since the 1970’s). As far as trophy management goes, in 2006 we were starting from scratch. The rancher to our north told me that it took them 8 years to develop their herd to the level that it is today (multiple 160 class deer taken each year). Point is, the ranch is still a work in progress concerning herd development, and hunters on this ranch need to be willing to let the better deer grow old, be patient, and understand that we are not there yet.

It is important to me that any new hunter has a good understanding as to the historical makeup of this herd. We are not a “Big Time Trophy Ranch”, at least not yet. In the last 6 years I (personally) could have killed 3 bucks above 160 B&C on this ranch, but none of those bucks were clearly post mature and they all walked. Those same 3 bucks were also passed by other hunters because we were all trying doing the right thing. But at this time, having a 160 Class deer in your cross hairs is the exception and not the rule. The deer that are typically classified as “better” on this ranch have historically scored between Mid 140 - Low 150 B&C.

To clarify this point I have identified every single buck that was caught on camera at 9 adjoining feeders during the “November” time frame of 2011. This was partly done for our own census information, but also so that prospective new hunters will have their expectations set correctly. For more information about this census and to view the pictures I can provide you with a website address for the ranch.

Our camp consists of a well/water system, septic, a 16,000 s.f. crushed limestone pad/parking area, covered deck, cleaning area, and 2 Conex storage boxes (one for feed and one for storage). New hunters will need to bring down their own mobile home or R.V. There are spots set up on the crushed limestone pad for R.V.’s to be parked. They have septic lines and water hook ups in place for easy set up.

There are tons of turkeys. Quail have been good in wet years but not in dry years. Dove hunting on the tanks is steady, there are some fields that have re-grown old plantings and have been full of dove in wet years. There are lots of ducks & sand hill crane. Pigs, coyote, etc., but we can’t shoot bobcats.

Thank you for your time and interest. If you are an experienced management minded hunter and easy to get along with then you will be welcomed. Anyone who is laid back will enjoy our group and this ranch.

Thank you for your interest and contact me if you would like to see our website which has more information and many pictures.

 

Methods Allowed: Crossbow, Rifle, Black Powder, Archery, Handgun, Shotgun

Game available: Native Big Game: Whitetail Deer, Javelina Upland Game Birds: Turkey - Rio Grande, Quail - Blue, Dove - Mourning, Quail - Bobwhite, Dove - Whitewing Waterfowl: Sandhill Crane, Geese, Duck Predator & Small Game: Fox, Feral Hog, Coyote, Squirrel, Raccoon, Rabbit

Pricing Information

Pricing Estimate: $10,700

Contract Length: Annual

Pricing Details:

The base lease cost is $7,950 per gun. There are additional camp expenses that are split by the group (electric bill, insurance, corn, protein, biologist fees, etc.). If you sign up for this lease, you will be required to pay $2,750 to our camp account for your portion of the expenses for the year. This amount should cover all of your camp expenses for the rest of the lease term which runs through February of 2009. The camp expense account pays for corn and protein used in feeders. I take care of keeping all feeders full. You will be required to contribute 2 corn feeders and 2 protein feeders (protein feeders must exceed 700 lb. capacity).

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