Killing mature bucks on food plots for deer

Killing mature bucks on food plots for deer

I believe there are keys to being able to kill mature bucks on food plots:
Pressure MUST be kept low. I don’t mean the place can’t be hunted. I mean that the deer shouldn’t know they are being hunted. That has as much to do with how the property is setup as it does how it’s hunted.

It sure helps when one is dealing with smaller plots (1/4-1 acre) surrounded by cover and close to where they bed. It’s always easier to get a buck to hit a food plot during light when he beds 100-200 yards away than when he beds 400-500 yards away. Just an extra 200-300 yards can make a big difference.

It also helps when you have a decent number of does hitting that food plot early. If they feel safe enough to do that consistently, bucks have a higher tendency to do so, as well.

Killing mature bucks on food plots for deer

Killing mature bucks on food plots for deer

Finally, So long as they feel safe, you’re training bucks that hitting the plots during daylight is OK, and daylight sightings of mature bucks should increase over the first 1-5ish years. After dispersal, that 1.5 coming out early without harm helps him feel safe and not see the threat of doing so. So, he tends to do the same at 2.5 and 3.5 and 4.5, as he’s done it since he was 1.5, without feeling threatened. Over time, you train him that doing so is perfectly safe.

That last part is a key. No doubt, that’s easier on a 320 than a 40 acre piece of ground, but my experience indicates that it is still more possible on that 40 than most realize. I believe most deer (exceptions to everything) have areas they feel safe moving in during daylight, even in high pressure areas. Most often. they are areas that for whatever reason (pain to get there or simply overlooked) humans don’t bug them in. Few bucks are purely nocturnal. Instead, I believe they are trained that this area is safe during daylight, but those aren’t. I’m going to strive hard to train them that these plots are safe, as well as most of the rest of my property. I believe the results of that are better than most would believe.

Killing mature bucks on food plots for deer

Finally, So long as they feel safe, you’re training bucks that hitting the plots during daylight is OK, and daylight sightings of mature bucks should increase over the first 1-5ish years. After dispersal, that 1.5 coming out early without harm helps him feel safe and not see the threat of doing so. So, he tends to do the same at 2.5 and 3.5 and 4.5, as he’s done it since he was 1.5, without feeling threatened. Over time, you train him that doing so is perfectly safe.

That last part is a key. No doubt, that’s easier on a 320 than a 40 acre piece of ground, but my experience indicates that it is still more possible on that 40 than most realize. I believe most deer (exceptions to everything) have areas they feel safe moving in during daylight, even in high pressure areas. Most often. they are areas that for whatever reason (pain to get there or simply overlooked) humans don’t bug them in. Few bucks are purely nocturnal. Instead, I believe they are trained that this area is safe during daylight, but those aren’t. I’m going to strive hard to train them that these plots are safe, as well as most of the rest of my property. I believe the results of that are better than most would believe.

Killing mature bucks on food plots for deer

Killing mature bucks on food plots for deer

Killing mature bucks on food plots for deer

I try to use that to my advantage in other ways. If I have a neighbor I work with well, I do my best to keep that going. If we don’t work well together, I try to access stands along property lines, with my wind blowing right into his property. I don’t mind spooking those deer at all, even those they commonly cross back and forth between our properties. Spooking them when they are on the other side of the line tells them they are not safe there, but that doesn’t happen to you over “here.” “Here,” you are safe as if you are snuggled in your mother’s arms. You can make the case that’s a jerk move, and maybe it is, but I’ve found it to be rather effective, particularly when that same neighbor doesn’t place a high priority on low impact, themselves.

Everyone seems to love complaining about their sloppy hunting neighbors. I’d almost always rather have them than serious, good hunters

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as neighbors. Sloppy neighbors tend to help me reach my goals better than those that share my same goals and are good at what they do. That said, I can see how they’d drive me nuts in very low deer number areas.


May 29, 2014 | Category: Uncategorized | Comments: none

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