January 24, 2006, 01:38 AM
I'm new to hunting and I'm sure looking forward to my first season. In fact, I'm so excited I'd like to go check the area out and familiarize myself with it.
I've obtained maps of the area and thoroughly studied them.
I've read that the rub marks are a good indication of the buck trails.
I figure where you can find big antlers you can find the proud owner next season -since he made it through this one.
Does anyone care to share some experience and pointers?
January 24, 2006, 02:04 AM
Well, first off, you're definitely on the right track by scouting the area. The more you can learn and understand, the better off you'll be. Hunting for deer is 90% being in the right spot, and being in the right spot is 90% a function of scouting. Yes, rubs will show you the bucks, but the rubs from this last season pre-rut may not mean that the bucks will use the same trails next year. You have to find the new rubs, starting in mid to late September to see where they're going to be staking out their new territory. Then at that time start looking for scrapes as well. You want to hang your stand or set up an ambush at a scrape if possible, because during the pre-rut & rut, bucks will visit each of their scrapes 2 or 3 times per day. Usually at night, but if you're lucky, they'll visit a scrape once in the daytime. Doesn't hurt to put some doe urine in one, or another buck urine or gland scent to get them fired up and visiting more often, but don't touch anything near the scrape that will put your human scent on it. The hard part is just finding the trails, rubs, scrapes. Scouting you will also see them occasionally of course. When you do, be stealthy & try not to let them see you (if you happen to see them first). The less conspicuous you can be (year round), the better. If they do see you, don't move until they leave the area. Leave a little doubt in their mind - they might think you are something other than human. You in Europe or North America or neither? Yeah, it will be a good time to look for antler sheds now through February, before the mice and rats start eating them completely as they will in the spring & summer, for the nutrients. Oh yeah, study those maps, and look for the natural funnels - places where stretches of timber narrow or where there is the shortest distance of open areas between 2 stretches of timber; or a bend in a creek is also a good funnel for the deer that are walking along it, but may go straight or around the bend when they reach it. If you are at the bend, then it doesn't matter which way they were planning to go; you've got them.
January 24, 2006, 07:45 AM
There is a plethora of good written information on whitetails. The trouble is a piece of paper has no problem with repeating a lie. I would recommend learning how to get around in the woods. Learn how to shoot straight from both shoulders. Find a patient mentor. Try very hard to not get dissappointed if you do not achieve success immediately. Hunting is a form of recreation for most of us, so if all else fails, enjoy yourself. Welcome to the family of hunters, please stay long and act responsibly.
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