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Deer Hunting for the Clueless

Deer Hunting for the Clueless

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Deer Hunting for the Clueless

159 pagine
3 ore
May 22, 2013


Deer hunting for the clueless will and does provide some of the most current information on deer hunting tactics,tricks,and trade secrets that can and will make even the most novice of hunters and beginners almost pro's overnight.From individual tactics and techniques to the old tried and true methods,this book describes,in detail,what it takes for you to become the force to be reckoned with against these most elusive creatures of the forest and will take you from beginner to professional in a very short season of hunting.
May 22, 2013

Informazioni sull'autore

Richard May’s short fiction has been published in his collections Inhuman Beings: Monsters, Myths, and Science Fiction and Ginger Snaps: Photos & Stories (with photographer David Sweet) and numerous anthologies and literary periodicals. Rick also organizes two book readings at San Francisco bookstores, the Word Week annual literary festival, and the online book club Reading Queer Authors Lost to AIDS. He lives in San Francisco.

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Deer Hunting for the Clueless - Richard May



First and foremost for anyone that has taken up the endeavor of pursuing deer in their natural habitat is to find a location to hunt in. Watching football in your living room or reading this fantastic piece of writing while in your bathroom at sunrise when the weather is cold and sunny and the rut is in full swing, though tempting as it may sound, probably will not give you the deer harvest numbers or buck quality that you are looking for. Unless it is of course that you do all of your hunting from your bathroom window or your front porch, which I am not knocking ,by the way ,only because of the fact that my dad takes at least two or three a year and at least one of them is always from his front porch.

Mind you that he does live in a very rural part of the county in which we reside in and that he has about ten heavily wooded acres that surround him, and this works for him, he is in his sixties and likes to stay in his house slippers, drink coffee, and watch the news while he occasionally peeks out of a window or two to see if there are any deer around, so needless to say this works for him, and may work for you to if you have it this way.Sadly,most of us don’t have the luxury of getting out of the bed and watching really good bucks from the comfort of our living room or from our front porch while we drink coffee in our underwear, it just so happens that he does.

Last year, along with my trail camera monitoring he got the opportunity to score on a buck that went about 140 inches, after watching him beat up every lesser buck in the yard, tear up several nice fruit trees and chase does until they were on the verge of death, I just told him what time he was coming through every day, and at about at what time and at about which direction that he would be coming from and how long he would probably hang around for and that was pretty much it. He called me the next day and asked me if I would come over and help him get his deer to the processor while he sat and finished his coffee and newspaper on the front porch. Needless to say, he ended up his year with a bigger buck than I did and did it all in his underwear and house slippers, and I suffered out about 300 hours hacking my way into and out of the woods and slugging it out hard to fill my tags and my freezer but still not with a buck that nice for the season. Such is life I say.

Anyway, back to what I was saying. Location is really a necessity when it comes to taking a mature whitetail, but the location can be anywhere that they may frequent, and during the peak breeding time ,mature whitetail deer and whitetail bucks can be seen anywhere from front yards to shopping center parking lots, and no, you are not allowed to take shots at them in your local super market parking lot, or at the convenience store, but nevertheless, you can and will see them in some very unusual places and most especially during the peak of the breeding season and my grandmothers car can at testify to this fact on several different occasions.

Take my small property for example, it is only about two and half acres, but it is heavily wooded, and gives my archery equipment a workout every time that the season comes in. I will take, at a minimum, two or three a year from just behind my house, and though none of them would be considered trophies, I like to eat deer and it is my firm intention to keep my freezer packed enough after deer season to feed me and my family throughout the year, so remember, no matter what anyone says, if you have a good location to hunt and there are deer on it ,then hunt it, because if given the chance to harvest a deer and it’s in my back yard ,and even though it may not have a 150 inches of horn on its head there is no way that you can deep fry,boil,roast,or smoke a set of antlers to make them taste worth a crap,and anyway, the antlers are just for our egos and for bragging anyhow.

Now, back to where we are discussing. Location can be anywhere that deer tend to frequent and for the most part, deer tend not to be very picky about their abodes, but keep in mind that most deer prefer some locations over others and that on any given tract of property that this property will and probably does hold some deer on it as long as it provides some very key things to hold them within this location.


First and foremost is going to be the place that deer are going to feel the most comfortable in; this area will give them cover. Deer like to hide and like to have a place that gives them adequate cover and gives them a place to bed in and around especially if it is thick cover. Now, not all of the time but most of the time, if an area is heavily pressured by you, other hunters or any number of other reasons deer will tend to bed in cover that is difficult to access or is easy to get in and out of for escape but a lot of the time will find themselves atop of a ridgeline or hill that contains adequate cover for bedding.

Unless their bedding area has been consistently violated by you, other hunters, or maybe by predators in the area, deer like to bed in places where the wind is in their favor and in places where they can detect and escape any possible danger that may be presented to them. A deer’s bed is what you may want to consider it’s bedroom, and like your bedroom, it is the place in your house or area that you want to feel the most comfortable in, it is the place where you rest, this is the place where you dress, and this is the place where you and your significant other carress.We are a lot like deer in the respect that we don’t really appreciate the fact that some dude or girl with a high powered rifle or a piece of archery equipment decides to stroll right through the middle of it stinking it up and shooting at us while we are in there, so don’t. Keeping this area sacred during the season will encourage its further use throughout the season by deer and hunting the fringes of it will keep it that way and still provide you with a target rich environment for the entire season, but if you decide to violate this area and it becomes violated too many times during the season, then you may as well back up and punt the ball because it is going to turn into a place where they will not feel comfortable accessing or using and this, in turn, will turn your great deer season into a short and disappointing one.

Hunt the fringes and always downwind if possible. Make your approach and departure from downwind, put your sets up high and downwind and get ready. Putting yourself up high and in the right position will give you the edge throughout the year in and around this set, bucks will seek out these areas during the season in search of females and the females will use this area for bedding and for cover throughout the year so if you have planned and executed all of your fringe tactics in and around this area you should be quite content in the fact that you should see deer throughout the entire season in and around this area unless pressure from you, other hunters, or other factors push or bump too many deer from this area on a constant basis. This tactic will and does work on public and on private tracts from ten acres to thousands of acres as long as there are deer on them.

Now we can discuss how to locate or distinguish bedding areas from just another part of the forest.

If you are searching for a bedding area there are some things in particular that you need to be searching for and looking for, these things are called deer sign, and not the ones that you find on the interstate highway either, deer will tell you exactly where they are hanging out at if you can decipher the signs of their presence but I can assure you that it will not be by a giant yellow sign stuck somewhere in the woods with a picture of a big jumping buck on it, the signs that you will be searching for are going to be a little more subtle than that.

First and foremost are going to be the trails that are leading to and from any area that looks like it may contain or hold deer. This may be an area of heavy growth, and some of the trails may even appear to be tunnel-like in appearance in really dense and heavy cover, but if there are deer hoof prints, which we will call tracks in it, then guess what? There are deer in there and they are just begging you to take them for a ride in the bed of your pickup truck to the local processor.

Next, you need to look for deer droppings. These are the things that come out of the southbound end of a northbound facing deer and will always be present in an area if the deer are eating and are alive. They are usually about the size and shape of a shelled peanut but are usually very dark to black in color. If handled, and the dropping is cold and hard then the deer that made them is probably long gone by now. If handled and the dropping is warm and slightly mushy and it’s cold outside then pick up your gun, drop the poop, and point your weapon in the appropriate direction cause the deer that made it is probably watching you and wondering why some guy or girl dressed in camo is handling some disgusting poopy that it just left behind, and yes girl hunters like to touch deer poop too, contrary to popular belief.

Anyway, back to the droppings. Like I said, it is usually about the size and shape of a shelled peanut though some deer may leave droppings larger or smaller they are usually about the same size shape and consistency and are usually dark to black in color about like the color of black licorice, but will not taste like licorice so don’t try it because no matter how many pieces you eat you will not be able to tell what the deer are feeding by tasting all of the goodies that they have left behind. After trying hundreds of deer dropping samples over a thirty year period I still cannot determine what they are feeding on by chewing on them.

Getting back to bedding areas, deer that frequent these areas on a lot of occasions or travel in and out of them on a regular basis tend to leave these droppings everywhere in and around them, only do they have no manners do they do this, but yes, the areas that they frequent the most will tend to have the most amount of droppings in them. These areas are going to be the areas that they are spending the most time in and around and should be areas that you need to concentrate on hanging stands or sets in and around downwind of.

The next thing that we will discuss as far as frequent signs to distinguish bedding areas go is simple. King sized beds for the bigger deer and queen sized beds for the smaller deer, and no, not really. Deer beds are pretty simple in design and function, but serve them very well and have done so since they have been on the face of the earth. Deer beds are simple little oval or crescent shaped depressions in the earth, usually not very deep and sometimes only a spot where the leaves or the grass is just laid over slightly and mashed down a little bit. I have seen these depressions in dirt, in grass, and in leaves and everywhere else that you could imagine a deer being. Usually the only difference in the beds in the size of them, which can vary depending upon the size of the animal making it and in the amount of them in an area which can vary depending upon how many deer have bedded in and around an area, but be assured of one thing, the more beds in an area than the more deer that are using it to bed in and around, and you may want to hotspot this area in your gps cause it’s going to be a busy deer season if you hunt in and around this area.

Deer may bed in certain areas more than others depending upon conditions or may be pressured to move to other bedding areas and it is important for you to know where and how the deer are moving in and through to get to these other areas. I have been in areas where the bedding areas almost never change and are used daily and usually by the same deer. These areas tend to be areas where the deer feel the safest and secure and tend to frequent them the most, and if you can locate these areas they will definitely be areas where you will want to hang stands or have sets ready to put into play.

Depending upon the time of the year, a lot of other signs can be found in and around heavily used bedding areas such as rubs, or places where bucks rub the velvet off of their antlers on trees that they usually end up rubbing the bark off of in the process of. Another sure sign that these areas are being frequented by bucks or other deer are pawed places or ground scrapes. These are areas that have been pawed clean of debris usually down to bare dirt, it is usually round or oval and will almost always be underneath of a overhanging limb or branch where they can rub their face on .They do this for a couple of reasons but the number one reason is to establish territorial dominance in an area and to let the females know that they are in an area and are interested in getting to know them on an intimate level.

The bucks, or males, will urinate and sometimes defecate in these ground spots to mark this area and will rub what is called a pre-orbital gland secretion from around their eye sockets on the limb or branch that is above their ground scrape.

Above all, the most obvious signs in and around bedding area are pretty simple. There will be deer physically laying down in these areas on a regular basis, and the more deer you see laying down in these areas should only tell you one thing. Buy an entire box of ammo for your rifle and make sure that the piece of archery equipment that you are using has a full quiver of arrows because this will be and should continue to be a target rich environment if you and your approach is

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