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The lure of the hunt is awesome, but whether you're a total expert or an excited novice, deer hunting tips are always welcome.
Let's face it. Deer hunting isn't easy and it's certainly not for the faint of heart. Sure, it's fun and on a good day, it's hugely rewarding. But, it also comes pre-loaded with many traps and pitfalls, and often, there are as many threats as there are challenges.
In the face of these challenges, you need as much guile as the deer you're hunting. In a battle between you and that trophy buck, the buck always seems to have the advantage.
Well, not anymore. It's time to tip the scales.
And, while we know in hunting as much in life, there's no such thing as a sure bet, there are ways to make your next hunt, your best hunt.
Interested to know more? Great. We've got you covered.
Here's everything you need to know to get the most from your next hunting experience.
In order to bag that deer, it goes without saying that you have to go to where the deer actually are. And, for most hunters, pre-season scouting is an absolute must. You need to do your work ahead of time.
Why? Because scouting and hunting at the same time is a one-way ticket to failure.
Here a are few pointers to consider when you're trying to locate deer:
Deer always leave evidence in places they've been. Bucks mark their territory by digging ruts into the ground with their hooves. They also scrape trees and bushes with their antlers, leaving telltale rub marks. So, good news! You don't need to be Sherlock Holmes to see where they've been.
Increasingly, bucks are converging in more urban areas, though, you'll find them in places adjacent to farm crops during the summer months. During Fall, areas with oak and beech trees seem to attract them.
Around harvest time, deer can be found near agricultural fields, particularly fields with corn and soybeans. During colder months, deer don't eat as much food, so they tend to go deep into thick woods.
Your local U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service or your state's Wildlife Resources Commission will aid you in selecting hunting areas. Contact them.
If the deer are on public land, many hunters tend to stay closer to the outskirts. This is all the more reason for you to go deeper.
Always bring a topographic map with you wherever you go. A GPS wouldn't hurt either.
Choosing the best hunting weapon is a completely personal choice for hunters. But, whether you choose to hunt with a rifle or a bow, the key requirement is competency. Marksmanship is a skill that you can hone.
Fully familiarize yourself with your weapon of choice. Then, practice, practice, practice.
Practice shooting positions for all directions. Offhand, seated resting against a tree. Go high and low.
Then, figure out what your best range is. You know, that sweet spot that you can hit consistently? We all have one. Find yours.
Becoming proficient with your weapon will serve two important purposes for you and the deer you hunt:
It will keep you safe.
It will keep your kills ethical.
Getting your camo gear just right could be the difference between a very successful hunt and a miserable one.
Recently, researchers have gained a few insights into exactly what a deer can see.
In a nutshell, deer can see blue the best, red the worst and their eyes are mainly designed to detect movement.
Want to get the best of your hunt? Don't wear anything blue and minimize the amount of white you wear because white reflects all colors.
And, this might be the hardest piece of advice to follow for some. Don't move!
In the savage world of nature, the ability a dear has to hear is the difference between life and death.
Have a look at a deer's ears and you'll quickly understand that those ears are built to detect predatory sounds. Deer can even distinguish between noises that represent a threat and ones that don't.
So, the next time you make too much noise with your clumsy steps, immediately stop and stand in your tracks.
Then stop and stand.
You get the idea, right?
So, the dear drops to the ground at your shot. The perfect kill. Victory is yours.
Or is it?
A deer that drops instantly at your shot is actually more likely to run off than one that runs a little distance before it tumbles.
If it falls, the deer may do so because it's stunned or shocked.
Try not to be over zealous here. It's best to stay put and prepare for another shot.
As you approach that trophy buck, be wary that it could still leap to its feet and run for its life.
On the ground, don't poke the deer with your weapon. Rather, stay a little back and throw a twig or something similar to gauge if there's a reaction.
If there is any sign of life, make sure to shoot the animal in the head if you're not going to be sending it to the taxidermist, or in the chest aiming for the heart or lungs if you are. This will end its life in the most humane way possible.
Driving is very popular with whitetail deer hunters because it's simple and it can be very effective.
What is driving? It's simply walking through an area to move deer out of their hiding places and into the path of other hunters.
If you're hunting in a group, always put a stander in the rear as well as the front. Deer will often wait for hunters to pass before they sneak back and amble off in a different direction.
Are you an expert yet? Maybe not quite, but you certainly have some awesome tips to make the most out of your next hunt.
Deer hunting can truly offer the ultimate in hunting experiences. So, why not take these deer hunting tips and put them into your hunting arsenal today?