COUES

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COUES WHITETAIL HUNT OVERVIEW

Dates: Late October Through the end of December (5 day hunt block within these dates).

Accommodations: Travel to and from Tucson or Phoenix intl airport depending on hunt location, and/or drive to the hunt location. For the southern AZ hunts: hunts are based out of a canvas wall tent basecamp, with solar showers and basic bathroom facilities, hunters may choose to stay at a hotel at their own expense. The Eastern AZ hunts are  located on a private ranch in AZ with 2 ranch houses. All travel, food, and lodging are provided from your point of arrival here in AZ to hunt camp etc is provided, food, trophy/meat preparation, delivery of meat to processor. Tags and license are not provided. (Tag $300-License $160)

Hunt: 5-day hunt, expect to see and/or stalk on mature coues deer between 80"-115". This hunt is provided on atv/off-road vehicle/on foot or horseback whichever the client prefers. A typical day includes getting to a glassing point and glassing all morning and then stalking the  deer in the mid day while they are bedded. The hunter should expect a shot in the 250-500 yd range or up to their comfortable limit. The weather will be mild, chilly in the morning and sunny mid-day. The hunter to guide ratio is 1:1 in the this hunting camp unless otherwise requested...every hunter gets the best chance at a trophy and often times there will be two guides helping out the hunter.

Travel: Hunter will fly into Phoenix International Airport (Sky Harbor) or Tucson Intl. Airport. From there all expenes are paid, pickup and drop off to and from airport, food, and lodging. (Many hunters prefer to drive and meet in camp).

Terrain: Arizona can be some tough country in spots and very mild in others. Generally hunts are in very walkable/huntable areas for all hunters, hunters should be able to hike 2-5 miles a day with 500-1500ft in elevation change. We do offer horseback options for hunters that need an extra pair of legs. 

Food: We eat great in camp, depending on camp size there may be a full-time camp cook for smaller camps the guides take care of the cooking. Breakfast is gourmet coffee/tea, breakfast burritos, breakfast sandwiches, bacon, eggs, pancakes, and leftover steak and eggs. Lunch is sandwiches, granola, candy, trail mix, chips, gatorade lunch meats/cheeses. Dinner is salad, appetizers, and everything from shrimp scampi, carne asada tacos, chicken fried pork chops and gravy, ribeye steaks...dinner is always great!

Scouting: Hunters should expect updates prior to their hunt in the form of pics/videos of bucks in their area that we have located and keeping up with. 

Weather: Early hunts can get up to 90 degrees while the later hunts can get down to 0 degrees. We will send a list go gear and epexted weather for the hunt and unit expectations. 

Access: Hunt areas are accessed by 4x4 vehicles, trucks and side-by-side ATV's. For certain hunts horseback is preferred and/or optional.

Wounded Animal Policy: There is no law in AZ for wounding animals. This is an ethical decision made by our guides. In general if an animal has been wounded in a way that is apparently lethal, the the hunt is over over until the animal is found or the tag is expired. In the end it is up to the guide and outfitter's discretion as we have the ethical responsibility to lethal-wounded wildlife. 

Private/Public Land: We hunt primarily on public land which AZ is primarily public land, in the form of state, federal and national forest. AZ offers no land-owner tags. We do hunt portions on private land and exclusive access to public land via private land entrance.

Tactics: We scout with game camera, glassing, digiscoping, and being in the hunting area year-round. We know where the animals live, eat, bed, water and escape to, and we use this to locate the best animals for our clients. 


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coues hunt packages

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COUES WHITETAIL BUCK

300 RUM

425 YARDS

COUES WHITETAIL BUCK

6.5 CREEDMOOR

440 YARDS

COUES WHITETAIL BUCK

7MM MAG

340 YARDS

COUES WHITETAIL BUCK

243 WSSM

250 YARDS

COUES WHITETAIL BUCK

6.5-300 WEATHERBY

440 YARDS

THE COUES DEER HISTORY

The ARIZONA COUES DEER

Arizona's other deer, the Coues, is a subspecies of the white-tailed deer. Coues deer are most common in Arizona's southeastern mountains, but range up on to the Mogollon Rim and into the White Mountains. They are most abundant in areas of predictable summer precipitation. They prefer woodlands of chaparral, oak, and pine with interspersed clearings.

Life History

In contrast to a mule deer's equally branching antlers, those of the whitetail consist of a number of tines arising from a main beam which curves forward. Mature bucks generally have three to four tines per side. 

Coat color is grayish-brown salt-and-pepper with white underparts; the face is marked with white 'halos' around the eyes and a white band across the muzzle. The most distinguishing characteristic of the whitetail is its long, broad tail. The tail is all white on the underside, gray to reddish-black on top, and is often carried high as an alarm signal.

The Coues deer is much smaller than most of its eastern cousins. Bucks stand just over 30 inches at the shoulder and rarely weigh over 100 pounds. Does average 65 pounds.

A doe's first pregnancy usually results in a single fawn; thereafter she may bear twins. Fawn drop coincides with the new growth following the summer rains. Usually, a whitetail fawn will stay with its mother longer than a mule deer will.

Hunt History

The Coues white-tailed deer is perhaps Arizona's finest game animal. Wary, and expert at using cover, whitetails rarely offer the hunter a standing shot once jumped. Perhaps for this reason, the species has become increasingly important in the harvest. Although the statewide take has varied from 1,500 to more than 7,000 whitetails a year, depending on the vagaries of drought and fawn survival, the recent trend has been for this species to constitute an ever greater proportion of the statewide harvest. For example, whitetails comprised less than 15 percent of Arizona's deer harvest in 1961 but today, they comprise over 40 percent of total deer harvested.

Behavior

When seen at a distance, two distinguishing characteristics between the species are evident in their tails and gait. The Coues has a flagging white tail and a more natural run. Mule deer on the other hand 'run' using a stiff legged, bounding gait. When at a closer range, other differences include facial markings, ear size, and antler configuration. In addition to physical features, habitat preferences vary. In Arizona's southern mountain ranges whitetails are generally found at higher elevations than are mule deer.

Summary

Breeding Period: January
Young Appear: August Average
Number of Young: 2
Distribution: 4K-10K ft in central and southeastern Arizona
Habitat: Oak-grasslands, chaparral, and pine forests
Food Preference: Weeds, shrubs, mast, grass, mistletoe, and cacti fruits in season
Range: 4 sq. miles
Live Weight: M-125lbs.; F-80lbs.
Predators: Mountain lion, bobcat, eagle, and coyote.

​Copyright © 2015, Arizona Game and Fish Department. All rights reserved.

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AN ORIGINAL COUES SHORT