Shed Hunting Tips│ the Best Time and Place to Look for Antlers
Whitetail deer hunters look forward to opening day of deer season more than any other day of the year. Subsequently, the last day of the season seems to be the worst day of the year. So what do you do when the season comes to an end? For those that enjoy putting big deer on their walls, staying out in the deer woods is a good choice and shed hunting is the name of the game!
Looking for shed antlers is not only a great way to spend time in the whitetail deer woods as well as keep logging miles on your gear long after the close of the season, but it can also provide you valuable information as it relates to your deer herd. Understanding what bucks made it through the hunting season as well as the areas they are frequenting can help you put a big whitetail buck on your wall come deer season the following year. Here are a few tips that can help you locate shed antlers on the properties you hunt.
Whitetail bucks can begin dropping their antlers as early as December/early January and can hold on to them as long as April in some cases. A testosterone level change as a result of the photoperiod along with a change in nutritional needs can trigger antler drop. A great time to begin looking for shed antlers is sometime between February and March. This will obviously change depending on which part of the country you are in and the conditions at the time.
Here are a few areas to key in on when it becomes time to start looking for shed antlers. During the late winter months, food is very important to a whitetail. Food sources are a great place to start looking for shed antlers during the late winter and early spring months. Grain fields and Evolved Harvest food plots are places that whitetail deer will spend a lot of time and can provide you a great opportunity to find an antler or two. Bedding areas are another excellent place to begin looking deer antlers. Focus in on known bedding areas as well as cover such as warm season grasses, and southwest facing hill sides. These areas can provide you a great chance to find an antler. Travel areas, and heavily used trails are sometimes hit or miss but can help you find a shed or two. Pay close attention to areas where deer have to cross a structure like a creek or a fence. A lot of the time, an antler will be jarred loose by the action of cross the object and can be lying nearby.
To see success from shed hunting requires more than a one-time investment. It can require several trips to the field and several miles logged, but if you put in the time you will be sure to reap the benefits the following season! Grab your GamePlan Gear pack, expect to find sheds, and start accumulating your pile!