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Old November 13, 2001, 12:31 PM   #1
Senior Member
Join Date: August 7, 2000
Location: Floating down the James River in VA
Posts: 2,599
My hunting curse-help!

I cannot seem to match seasons and game!
Saturday: The last day of the early VA turkey season. I'm using a 12gauge. I took my wife along to Goshen-Little North Mt. WMA on the pretext of "hiking". Towards the end of the day we hunted a nice long sloping draw that looked promising-lots of oaks, a small creekbed and plenty of cover at the top of the draw. I spook up three deer while busting brush at the top. While hunting the lower creekbed later in the day, I see 3 turkeys, but all have seen us and are running away. No chance of a shot. A wasted day other than discovering where the local turkeys are moving through.
Monday: The first day of western VA deer muzzleloading season. I decide to hunt the same draw/creekbed in a slow stalk fashion. During the course of 4 hours, I encounter at least 15 turkeys, in 3 seperate groups with ranges as close as 10yds due to use of the local terrain features. I drew a bead on 4-5 of them just for the practice. All of them are following the late season pattern I've established for the local turkeys. (I haven't been able to pattern the local deer other than that they seem to be totally nocturnal feeders).
I see deer during turkey season and turkeys during deer season!
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Old November 13, 2001, 03:04 PM   #2
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Join Date: November 6, 2001
Location: Central Scotland and the Highlands
Posts: 164
Just an example of what the anti's have been claiming.

Animals are far more intelligent than we give them credit for - they know game laws backward - right down to telling the time!
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Old November 13, 2001, 03:47 PM   #3
Art Eatman
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Join Date: November 13, 1998
Location: Terlingua, TX; Thomasville, GA
Posts: 24,126
Sorry, Lil Bubba, cain't he'p ya!

My own curse, back in my 8 to 5 years, was that the best weather to get Big Bambi moving around always occurred on Monday-Wednesday, and the only time I could get to the lease was on weekends.

Lotsa little volunteers around when it's warmish.


You're from BATFE? Come right in! I use all your fine products!
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Old November 14, 2001, 11:11 AM   #4
Join Date: September 29, 2001
Location: Southwest Pennsylvania
Posts: 51
Hard huntin'

I hunt an area that covers almost a 100 mile circle.
The game becomes smarter at the center of the circle and becomes less alert the farther I move from the center.
I live in a populated area. Not near a larger city or town. Houses and farms dot the landscape. As I move out from my center I move into areas where you have to travel some time to get to your hunting spot. Roads are bad and winding and the area is sparsly populated.
As I drive through my hunting area I notice the hunters scouting the closer areas. The good ones get out of their cars and trek into the wood. The butt-heads stay in their vehicles and call and spot from the drivers seat. The animals within three miles will know the habbits of man and react to our actions. They try to avoid us.
I have spent money and time attending seminars on how to hunt and track different animals. One key observation passed on by the teachers is that as much as we study them they study us.
But they do this every year as they do not have a large capacity for memory like humans. They opperate on a flight response for safety and preservation.
If the area you hunt is hunted by more than a few other hunters, your prey will react in a common flight pattern. This means for that area you must put in twice as much scouting time as you normally would. Let the animals know your there and watch their response and flight pattern.
A couple of years ago I put a fourteen point buck 100 yards in front of my father. He missed the shot because of a sapling about the size of your little finger. But the area was hunted heavily and I was able use the knowlege from the simenars to put that deer in front of my dad.
I had never seen that deer before but I followed a set of rules learned in a class.
The animals don't know the seasons or dates. They do know about the butt-heads that never leave their cars to scout and call because there are so many of them.
Good luck out there.
Wild Willy
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Old November 14, 2001, 11:48 PM   #5
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Join Date: June 7, 1999
Location: Central Ohio
Posts: 2,100
Ha, same thing happens to me. If you want to see 40-50 turkeys sometime, just come along with me on a deer hunt. Or visa versa.

I took a shot at a squirrel last week with a .22 and a big doe blew at me from about twenty feet away (didn't even see her till then). About ten minutes later a good sized buck stood on the path and watched me for awhile. I had bowhunted all morning in the area and didn't see anything that close. It must be Gods way of keeping us humble.
Always do right. This will gratify some people and astonish the rest.
Mark Twain
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Old November 15, 2001, 11:43 AM   #6
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Join Date: August 7, 2000
Location: Floating down the James River in VA
Posts: 2,599
Oh I know where the deer are-in general. The population in the area I hunt is deep in cover (mountain laurel or rhododendron), and rifle season hasn't even started yet! Trick is, there is no way to approach them quietly, and their feeding pattern seems to be early evening (after dusk) only, with the deer back in cover way before daylight. I'm thinking about changing my strategy and hunting water sources due to the dry year. The area I've been hunting experience relatively low pressure, but it is public land. Mast acorns are widely available, as is cover. This makes patterning difficult; if deer are disturbed in the slightest, they simply move to any number of substitute cover or feeding locations. My scouting consists of lots of hiking, usually during bow season or while squirrel hunting (I can't stand scouting w/o a gun in hand). The problem is how frequently the patterns change as the seasons progress. Kudos to you guys who figure your areas out!
(Poodleshooter considers going back to hunting geese...)
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Old November 20, 2001, 12:56 AM   #7
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Join Date: March 13, 2001
Location: NW Florida
Posts: 2,307
Get you some good looking yuppie camper hiking gear. Deer, Turkey and other assorted critters pay no attention to these people other than to gawk at the latest fashions. You would also do well to design a 12 guage walking stick. You will spend many successful days bagging game with this combination.

Make sure the wifey dresses as the "Soccer Mom". Deer pay no attention to these ladies either but are rather intent on looking for the smarty aleck children who usually accompany these moms from suburbia. A good distraction technique to harvest game.

Good Shooting
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