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Old September 11, 2009, 07:02 PM   #1
Tomas
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Do deer shun powerlines?

I found some nice, remote, accessable area to hunt deer here in WA for the early deer season, which starts in just a few days. I've mostly hunted elk in Idaho, haven't had much luck with blacktails and muleys here in WA.

So, I'm just wondering, do the deer shun the high-tension powerlines? If so, I'll have to go to plan B.

Thanks

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Old September 11, 2009, 07:16 PM   #2
Daryl
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Sure they do! That's why so many deer are hit by cars on highways with powerlines running inside the road easement.



Sorry, sometimes I can't resist sarcasm. Good luck on your hunt.

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Old September 11, 2009, 07:23 PM   #3
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Not in NC! It's a pretty productive method.
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Old September 11, 2009, 07:41 PM   #4
.284
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I've read more than one article linking big bucks being actually attracted to powerlines. As for myself, I've hunted around high tensioned powerlines and found some truth in this.
Maybe you should stick to plan A.
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Old September 11, 2009, 07:50 PM   #5
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Deer take the path of least resistance....in many ares that means a powerline road/jeep trail......The EMF has nothing to do with them, food, water, escape means everything
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Old September 11, 2009, 07:50 PM   #6
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Lots of folk set up in the clear cuts around power lines.

Blacktail are pretty hard to hunt. Try to go with whitetail and mule deer for a start. I've had real good luck in the Wenatchee and Ellensburg areas.
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Old September 11, 2009, 07:56 PM   #7
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I think it really depends on the habitat and amount of hunting pressure. If they are heavily pressured, I've seen deer sneak up to the edge of the right of way, look both ways and haul butt across the lane. In heavy timber, there is precious little for deer to eat and they depend heavily on the browse provided by the forest openings so they can be magnets.

If the surrounding land is a patchwork of habitat types, they won't necessarily be drawn to the powerlines but they won't shun them either as long as they aren't heavily pressured. The wide swaths of relatively open ground should give you a nice, long shot in both directions if you pick your spot well.

I would walk the lines as far as I can and look for deer sign and signs of other hunters. If I see a lot of A and none of B, I would stick with plan A.
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Old September 11, 2009, 08:31 PM   #8
Art Eatman
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Generally, deer like edges, and don't wander out in the broad open. Power line clearings provide miles of edges. Commonly, the movement is more acrros than along, so look for trails. Often in low areas where the brush gives a bit more cover.
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Old September 11, 2009, 08:51 PM   #9
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Quote:
Not in NC! It's a pretty productive method.
Indeed it is..........
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Old September 11, 2009, 09:03 PM   #10
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Most deer no, but two from last year will never go near another power line
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Old September 11, 2009, 09:10 PM   #11
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Most deer shun power lines, but not all of them. Some of the more arboreal and wirewalking-inclined deer are actually attracted to them even if they have little actual experience with electricity.

closeup
http://www.santafeghostandhistorytou...s/r0300265.jpg

distant view
http://www.santafeghostandhistorytou...s/r0300264.jpg

Otherwise, you won't find deer going anywhere near downed sparking power lines. The same can't be said for humans.

Since most power lines are 20 feet in the air or buried, the deer are never in actual proximity to them and hence most are not bothered by them too much.
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Old September 11, 2009, 09:19 PM   #12
Brian Pfleuger
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The most productive hunting area I have ever had access to is an area where deer cross high tension power lines.
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Old September 12, 2009, 06:09 AM   #13
gun44
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We have a powerline

bout a mile long going through the middle of our lease. We have 4 shooting houses on platforms placed at different points along the way. They are placed in areas to ensure safety first. We have killed more deer from these stands, over the years, than from stands placed in the wood.
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Old September 12, 2009, 07:08 AM   #14
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Nobody told them high-tension powerlines cause brain cancer.



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Old September 12, 2009, 07:09 AM   #15
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Deer are sorta like us, they hate going through the brush if they do not have to. Every year I take the lawn mower and cut a few paths from the fields, through the woods and back to the fields on the other side. I put a few 90 degree turns in them.

Every year the dear wander down these lanes and end up in someones scope. When I was a kid we used to put tree stands on the power line poles and shoot the clearing. (I know, not the brightest idea, but we were young and going to live for-ever.)
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Old September 12, 2009, 09:59 AM   #16
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Our club erected stands every 100 yds. or so along a transmission right-of-way and we harvested many whitetail there over the years.
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Old September 12, 2009, 11:46 AM   #17
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Deer are edge feeders. Woods for shelter, pastures for grazing. Right of way is nothing but perfect manmade edge.
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Old September 12, 2009, 11:58 AM   #18
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Anywhere you have clear cut land you will have a better chance of takeing a deer over the next several years. Just remember the oldest bucks and does will only show in most open areas when ruteing, pushed or with the help of moon phase. It does not matter if the clearing is under powerlines or a 200 acre clear cut. I have seen many deer right out in the middle of them. Just got to put in the hours to see them. I have shot more good deer in a rain or at lunch time than other times of day and alway use clear cuts for finding deer movement . Get out and mow if you must to help your chances if brush is too high.
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Old September 12, 2009, 12:02 PM   #19
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Deer are browsers, not grazers...just a technical distinction.
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Old September 15, 2009, 05:52 PM   #20
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Since I havnt hunted whitetail untill recently, I cant make much observation about them yet. I can say that both mule and blacktail seem to travel parallel to power lines. You can usually find their trails fairly close to them depending on cover. They will cross them however and it is usually at an area where they find the most cover.
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Old September 15, 2009, 05:57 PM   #21
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Heck NO!!! I always scan down a powerline when driving as it is my longest view for the most part... I see them under all sizes of powerline... I was out all night friday and saturday nights runnin' with a buddy and his deer dogs getting them ready for season and they were under and around the main powerline all night... never a mile north or south of it and deer crossing under many times...
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Old September 15, 2009, 07:17 PM   #22
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If you have a power line running through the middle of a bean field there are no more deer under it than anywhere else. Same for forest land unless you have planted something on the right of way for them to eat. But, it sure makes them easier to see.
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Old September 15, 2009, 07:55 PM   #23
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I wouldn't say the powerline itself attracts them but as already said it is so easy to see 300-400 yards deep. I will also add that I seen so many tracks of various size deer and the tracks were more more than just numerous. Piles of scat everywhere too. Not just one trail used to get from one side to the other...
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Old September 15, 2009, 09:06 PM   #24
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A lot of times there is good browse on a power line compared to what is in the woods. Mature forest don't offer much accept when the acorns drop.
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Old September 17, 2009, 06:50 PM   #25
James R. Burke
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No!
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