Shed Hunting Tips | Head Hunters TV

When and Where to Look for Shed Antlers

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!

When and Where to Look for Shed Antlers | Head Hunters TVLooking 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.

When

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.

Where

Shed hunting season | Head Hunters TVHere 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!

Selecting the Right Buck to Kill | Head Hunters TV

Head Hunting │ What to Look for in a Buck

Antlers vs. Age │ Selecting the Right Buck to Kill

When it comes to deer hunting and herd management, there are multiple philosophies that exist that would result in having and holding larger, more mature deer. Regardless of your preference, having and holding larger whitetail bucks is every deer hunter’s goal. This article will take a look at the two factors that will influence a deer hunter to pull the trigger, age and antler size.

If you ask any deer hunter what they hope to encounter each season, they would probably tell you “a big buck”. It would be less likely that you hear them say “a mature deer” or “an old deer”. The point is that most hunters look for big antlers. While a 170” whitetail typically fill the dreams of every deer hunter at some point or another, allowing a buck to reach that size takes dedication and hard work with the implementation of deer management techniques that will require some self-discipline.

When it comes to deer hunting, looking at the size of a whitetails rack is something that even the most seasoned hunter can get caught up in at one point or another. Of course, harvesting a 120 to 130” whitetail can be a trophy to most deer hunters, the old saying “you’ll never shoot a big one if you keep shooting the small ones” holds true. Growing big mature whitetail deer really comes down to habitat, genetics, and competition which is more than can be covered in this article. However, there are few things that a deer hunter can do to help better balance the herd and to produce large whitetails.

Managing and harvesting deer based upon age, rather than by looking at the size of the rack, can yield better long term success. Allowing a 3.5 year old buck to reach 4.5 or even 5.5 years of life can make a big difference in the quality of your herd. Pulling the trigger whole deer hunting on a young buck that has yet to reach its full potential can be very tempting when the going gets tough. But, by selecting an older deer to harvest you allow every buck to reach its maximum. A buck tends to peak in antler growth around 5.5-6.5 years of age, and begin decreasing in antler growth after 6.5. This means that the rack of an older, more mature whitetail buck may not be as spectacular that as of a 5.5 year old deer, however, when given the choice between harvesting a 140” 3.5 year old or 130” 6.5 year old, the latter is always the better decision.

Successful deer hunters are those that put in the time to prepare, scout, and utilize the best equipment available to them. Take the time to sort through your Wildgame Innovations Trail Camera pictures and find the most mature buck to target. Plant your Evolved Harvest food plots based on his movements. Scout your food plots often, check your cameras, and when it comes time to hunt be sure to pass on every young buck. Waiting for the most mature buck ensures younger bucks are moving up in age classes. If you practice these tactics while deer hunting, along with a little patients, you might just be pleased with the results.

Attract Deer to Your Hunting Property | Head Hunters

How to Attract Deer to Your Hunting Property

Your Deer Hunting Property | Three Things You Need

Imagine sitting in your tree stand on opening morning of deer hunting season. You are completely relaxed because you can virtually guarantee that the whitetails will show up as the sun rises. You sit back calmly to await the deer parade that will walk right past your stand.

While that may be a bit of a stretch, it is definitely possible to stack the deck in your favor when it comes to attracting deer to your property. There are three primary things deer need in their every-day lives. If you can provide food, water, and cover on your land, you should be able to hold deer fairly well within your boundaries. That is critical if your land is surrounded by heavily pressured areas, as whitetails will steadily move onto your property to avoid the onslaught of hunters around you.

Your Deer Hunting Property | Head Hunters TV

Groceries

There are hundreds of ways to provide more food to your deer herd. An obvious way to provide calories is to plant food plots on your property. You see it all the time on your favorite deer hunting videos. It’s important to provide both perennial and annual species within your border, and plant a mixture that will offer calories throughout the year. Perennials (e.g., Evolved Harvest clover, chicory, alfalfa, etc.) can last around five years with good maintenance. They provide food for much of the growing season, which makes them fairly cost-effective. Annuals (e.g., corn, soybeans, brassicas, grains, etc.) are only available for the year you plant them, but they are very attractive in that time. Some species are only attractive after they have matured or their seed has ripened, while others provide forage opportunities throughout the summer, as well.

Another not-so-obvious way is to manage natural habitat on your property to produce abundant browse and forb species at ground level. This can be accomplished by doing timber stand improvement projects, such as hinge-cutting or selective cutting. These TSI cuts open the forest canopy and let more sunlight to the forest floor, which spurs new and vigorous growth for several years. If you’re not very comfortable making the call yourself, consult a forester for advice on which trees to cut and which method would be best.

Following the TSI work you’re doing, you can simultaneously plant and manage your property for mast species. Acorns, especially from white oak species, are very attractive in the fall. Soft mast species (e.g., apples, pears, persimmons, plums, etc.) provide a lot of food per acre, as well. Once they’re used to eating these species, you can also use similar-smelling Buck Bomb scents during the hunting season to further attract deer.

Three Things You Need for Deer Hunting | Head Hunters TV

Water

This is a no brainer, but deer need water just as much as we do. If you have a ditch, pond, creek, or even a river flowing through your land, you are covered. If you don’t have one of those features, you can make one yourself in a weekend with some farm equipment or sweat equity. The simplest idea, of course, is to dig a small hole with a shovel and place either a children’s pool into it or lay a tarp across the bottom of the hole and weigh it down with rocks. Let them fill up with rainwater, and be sure to place a large branch into it so small animals can climb out if they fall in.

The other option is to use a backhoe to dig a pond that will fill up from precipitation and natural groundwater. You should check your local regulations before doing so, though. Don’t try this approach on sandy soils or on a ridgetop, as you’re unlikely to be successful in these areas, which would be better suited to the first option.

Cover

Without adequate habitat, deer likely won’t stay long on your land. It doesn’t matter if you have the best water and food source around, they simply won’t linger throughout the daylight hours without some kind of cover. They need to feel secure from predators (including us), have adequate bedding and fawning habitat, and use heavy cover to escape the elements as well.

A good habitat management plan will involve several items. Basically, you need to provide what the surrounding landscape is missing. If the lands around you lack winter cover, you should plant pockets of conifer species (e.g. spruces, pines, etc.) for thermal protection. If there is very little fawning habitat around you, you could plant native warm season grasses for bedding cover. If deer hunting pressure is an issue in your area, designate a portion of the interior of your property to be a sanctuary area where they can always feel safe without any human intrusion.

If you can meet these three basic needs on your land, you will see your deer hunting success improve drastically. You’ll see more deer, and hold more of them on your land throughout the year. Who knows? Maybe you’ll get your deer parade after all.

Deer Hunting | How to Last on Bitterly Cold Hunts

Late Season Deer Hunting│ Tips You Need to Know to Stay Warm!

When ole’ man winter raises his ugly head and the conditions become brutal, most deer hunters will think twice about setting off into the deer woods. While the conditions may be just about too much to bare, if you happen to find a way to make due, you might be in for some of the best deer hunting of the year!

It is well-known fact that white-tailed deer, including big bucks, can be greatly affected by changes in the weather. Outside of the rut, strong cold fronts can be one of the best times to catch a big mature buck on their feet. Of course, it goes without saying that while extremely cold conditions can make whitetail deer more predictable, it can also be some of the toughest conditions that you may face all season.

Deer hunting in the cold temperatures is both physically and mentally taxing on a hunter. Overcoming the mental side of deer hunting in the cold will vary from hunter to hunter, however, simply keeping in mind that while the conditions may be difficult…it could also be your best opportunity to punch a Muzzy Trocar through a buck. Thinking in this mindset can greatly help you. Keep focused on your goal and you might be surprised how much it can help you. Luckily, deer hunting when the temperatures are cold and the snow is on the ground will typically translate into seeing a lot of deer, which can really help you keep you mind off the cold.

Scent Lok Late Season Deer Hunting | Head Hunters TVClothing that can provide you protection from the extreme temperatures is a must through these conditions. It all starts with having a solid base layer. Having a base layer that is designed to help regulate the hunters body heat is where it all starts. Base layers combined with a Late Season System such as the products from ScentLok can have a hunter content and concentrated. Having durable, warm outer layers is certainly important when it comes to withstanding extreme cold; however, having a solid base layer is the foundation for late season deer hunting success.

Many deer hunters will take the field this winter in search of wall hanger, however, many will not be able to overcome the extreme conditions. The cold stand or blind can and will be ruthless on many. The takeaways here are starting with a solid foundation and staying focused on your goals!

Behind the Scenes of Hunting Videos | Head Hunters TV

Sneak Peek Behind the Scenes of Hunting Videos

What You Don’t See on Most Other Hunting Shows

There’s a good chance we are all a little interested (alright, obsessed) with hunting videos. After all, if you can’t be in the field chasing big whitetails or hiking up mountains after bull elk, the next best thing is living vicariously through the hunting program you’re watching. Not only that, many hunting programs offer a lot of helpful tips to help us grow as outdoorsmen and women. Whether it’s scent control, stalking tactics, habitat management, or even predator control, there’s a lot to be learned from hunting videos.

However, there’s also a lot that we don’t see on most hunting programs. Some of the behind-the-scenes footage or content production process stays hidden. Many people may not stop to think about it, and will just take the program at face value. But sometimes we need to dig deeper. How was this deer hunting video shot? What other tactics were being used that were not mentioned? Head Hunters TV really strives to show viewers everything it takes to produce a hunting video. Let’s take a look at some common oversights by viewers.

First, most people don’t appreciate the sheer time commitment it truly takes to connect with one trophy animal, let alone several. Consistently. Over many seasons. Nobody is that lucky. In fact, rarely are people simply lucky. They are often some of the hardest working people you’ll find. With Huntsoft scouting, stand-hanging, setting Wildgame Innovation Trail Cameras up, and actually hunting, it’s a huge amount of time in the field, away from family and other obligations. Often, it involves sitting in extreme cold, rain, snow, and wind for days on end. But sometimes that’s what it takes to be successful.

Hunting Shows | Head Hunters TV

Some viewers might see a trophy animal harvested and throw up their hands to say, “they must be hunting a high fence ranch,” and dismiss the whole thing. Occasionally, this is true. Some programs do sometimes hunt such a place. But today’s hunters are looking for and expecting more from hunting videos. As such, more and more programs reveal the location they hunt as public property, where hundreds or thousands of others also hunt. If they can do it on public land, it shows that if we pay attention to their techniques and strategies, we too could bag a trophy animal on public land. Alternatively, hunts also happen with outfitters who can put in the time to develop a property to be a mature buck paradise, thereby increasing the chance of success for that hunting program. There are outfitters for just about every price point too.

Another time-related issue that we often don’t see on hunting videos is the amount of time it takes to actually produce the content. You need to plan a cohesive story line of some sort for each episode, take hours of “B roll” (nature shots and filler video), spend time on stand for days or weeks for the right shot, and then spend even more time editing through all the footage to make it coherent and cram it all into less than a half hour segment! With most hunting programs coming out on a weekly basis, that’s a Herculean amount of effort. It’s not crazy to think that it takes a couple hours to edit and produce one minute of content.

A huge obstacle to making hunting videos in the field is simply the difficulty of filming with extra equipment, a GamePlan Gear Pack, and maybe two people in the tree. That all means there is more gear and more movement for a deer to pick out from the surrounding cover. In particularly open sets, wise whitetails may quickly bust the hunters when the cameraman pans the camera around to get the shot. It’s very difficult for hunting videos to be made when deer continue to pick you out of a tree before you can get any footage.

Sneak Peek Behind the Scenes of Hunting Videos | Head Hunters TV

Finally, let’s look at the most important detail that brings a hunting video together: getting the actual kill shot on camera. In many cases, the hunter can see the buck just fine and even has the cross hairs or peep sights resting on the boiler room, but can’t take the shot because the camera operator can’t find the deer or doesn’t have clear footage. There’s no point in taking a kill shot on camera if there is a limb or brush blocking the camera’s viewpoint. Sponsors may quickly pull out of a program that repeatedly does this. The opposite is of course true as well, when the camera has full view of the deer but the hunter can’t see it or get on it. It’s a serious issue and very frustrating after potentially months of work to get to that point.

In summary, hunting videos have a lot to teach us. Not only do they help us learn new tips and techniques about deer or turkey hunting, but they also show us the value of hard work. Think of these items the next time you watch your favorite hunting program. You’ll appreciate it a lot more than you did before.

Deer Hunting | Head Hunters TV

Deer Hunting | What Makes a Head Worth Hunting?

The Important Factors Behind Big Bucks and Antlers

As deer hunting season and harvests crank up across the country, so does the discussion and more likely controversy over what makes big bucks. This is head hunting by definition, seeking a buck big enough and with enough inches to wrap a tag around. So what is responsible for giving a buck a head worth hunting? The answer isn’t simple. We have to focus in on every factor that contribute to a whitetails life, not just what affects his antlers.

Genetics

Antler potential including shape, traits, and overall size are determined by its individual DNA, made up of its parent’s genetic makeup. The first main takeaway when discussing genetics is that you cannot control genetic characteristics of a free-ranging herd. The second is that the genetic potential can only be reached at optimum nutrition levels and at a certain age. Instead of worrying about genetics, deer hunters and managers need to focus on the other two most important factors that determine bucks potential.

Nutrition

Just as lactating does need optimum forage growth and protein during spring fawning, bucks require a lot of energy to grow a set of antlers. Protein in particular is extremely important during summer months while velvet is growing. This information often leads many to supply summer forage and nutrition, often in the form of soybeans…only to forget about nutrition for the rest of the year. Quality habitat including natural forage, browse, and thermal cover in the winter months is equally if not more important to a bucks development and potential.

Age

A buck’s antler size experiences the biggest jumps in size from year to year. From the first year in age, up to 6 years old, a buck’s antlers will continually grow larger, heavier, and get closer to reaching full potential. If optimum nutrition is supplied a bucks potential is maximized at 6 years in age. Letting a deer reach maturity at 4 years old will get you very close to reaching its full potential. In this case your trigger finger is the most important management tool you can control to allow bucks to reach their full potential.

Head Hunters TV

As deer hunting continues this season, the discussion and concern will only grow. If you’re worried about getting deer to their full potential take another look at your habitat management and herd management plans and goals. Maximizing available nutrition through the habitat and altering age distribution and structure of your herd into older age classes will create some racks on heads worth hunting for!

Bedding Area Strategies | Head Hunters TV

Deer Hunting | Bedding Area Strategies

When Should You Risk Hunting Bedding Areas?

Do you hunt deer bedding areas or not? It’s one of those topics that tends to send people grumbling, quickly turns conversations sour, and can neatly organize hunters into two different camps. There are plenty of well-accomplished hunting experts claiming the merits of both approaches. But which one is correct? Is there even a correct choice? Let’s look at both sides of the issue to see when hunting these secret gems is appropriate and when doing so may ruin your chances at harvesting a nice animal.

Avoidance is Best

Many hunters steer clear of bedding areas because there is a notion that wandering into one will spook animals, particularly mature bucks, off of your land, onto the neighbor’s property, or into the next county. And in many cases, this is true. If a wise, old whitetail buck doesn’t feel safe in his bedroom, why would he stick around particularly as the season continues? Besides that, deer hunting bedding areas is downright difficult. It would be tough to hunt a bedding area more than a couple times before you inevitably let the deer in on your plans. Surprise is your only real option.

Avoidance is Best | Head Hunters TV

The experts from this group claim that instead of pursuing bucks into their core bedding areas and sanctuaries, you should set your stand up along travel corridors between these areas and food or water, where you can ambush them without the fear of pushing them away. Typically, you should be able to more easily sneak into and out of these corridors than going into an actual bedding or feeding area. This deer hunting approach works well for those hunting on private land, as they have the option to leave sanctuaries alone and the incentive to hold as many deer on their property as possible.

Get In There

Other deer hunters prefer to jump right in or close to bedding areas, sneaking into them in the very early morning hours before deer have returned from feeding areas. That way, they’ll be waiting in ambush for unsuspecting animals to come back. Several experts hold out for the perfect weather conditions during the rut, and then sneak into doe bedding areas to hunt them. During the rut, bucks will be throwing caution to the wind and inspecting all areas where does congregate. By taking this approach, hunters are limiting their intrusion to the best potential hunting opportunities of the season, which outweighs the risk of bumping deer. Basically, they try to stack the deck as much in their favor as possible.

Get In There | Head Hunters TV

The key behind deer hunting these areas is truly being there from well before light to well after dark, so you don’t educate deer to your activity. If you find a good doe bedding area (e.g., lots of beds all in close proximity), try setting up on the downwind side of it. During the rut, bucks will often circle these areas downwind to scent-check for estrous females, putting you right in his direct path. This deer hunting method is probably best used on heavily pressured public land, where you often need to be aggressive to find mature bucks.

Balance

Based on the information from both parties, it seems a balance could be struck between strictly avoiding and always hunting bedding areas. It’s certainly true that deer will feel more secure on your property if they have a few sanctuary areas that you never enter. Keep these sanctuaries located toward the interior of your land, and only disturb them to retrieve an animal or do maintenance in the winter or spring. That being said, if you own more than 40 acres, it’s likely there may be other bedding areas on the periphery of this sanctuary that you could hunt. A good time to break the bedding area avoidance rule is toward the end of the season when you need a Hail Mary play. You’re not going to cause any lasting damage at this time of the year, so sneak into the thickest cover and see if you can find that elusive buck that disappeared from your food plots weeks ago. Every time you enter one of these hidden spots, make sure you’re as quiet and scent-free as possible, and utilize good entry and exit trails to avoid detection. If you do that, you just might luck out with a nice buck.

Hunting Shows | Lessons Learned for Your Next Hunt

How Hunting Shows Can Help You Next Season

Tell me if you’ve heard this from your significant other or another family member: “You’re spending too much time watching hunting shows.” Sure, you may sit and watch a couple programs each night, and maybe even fill up some of your weekend mornings with them. But unless you’re retired, it’s fairly unlikely you’re permanently parked in front of the TV. Well, now you can confidently tell them your addiction to hunting videos has legitimately paid off. It turns out there’s a lot to be learned by watching your favorite hunting programs.

At the very least, it’s better than watching any “reality show” on television these days. Who really cares about what celebrity is dating who or what drama happens among housewives. Hunting is infinitely more real than 90% of the garbage you see while channel surfing. Plus, hunting videos are more than just entertainment. To that end, let’s get started.

Ethics

It’s evident in most hunting shows that ethics are a major factor. Admittedly, some of this could be due to the public pressure and high visibility that hunting videos attract. But all sportsmen and women should learn from these practices. You don’t typically see hunting personalities taking long-distance or risky shots at animals because they know they could miss or worse, only wound the animal, in front of thousands of viewers. Wouldn’t that give you a second of pause?

However, if you’ve hunted long enough, we all know that accidents do happen. When these hunting videos show that an animal is only wounded, you also see them diligently tracking the animal until they find it or until they’ve exhausted every possible tracking option. Only at that point is the pursuit abandoned. We should have deep respect for our fellow hunters who do this, and certainly adopt this practice ourselves if we don’t do it already.

Education

Oftentimes on hunting videos, the host or hostess will take time to explain how they manage their land or lease for deer hunting. We as viewers can learn how to conduct trail camera surveys, manage our forests and fields for whitetail deer, plant and monitor food plots, and many other management activities. Hunting shows can also teach us about whitetail deer biology and habits. The more you know about your intended game animal, the more you can predict patterns and the better hunter you will become.

New Gear

Most of us probably don’t need much of an excuse to go buy some new hunting gear. However, watching your favorite hunting shows is useful in that it introduces us to new products that might give us an edge next hunting season. Anything you can do to stack the deck in your favor while in the woods is a good thing. Granted, there are many phony gimmicks out there designed to catch hunters instead of game animals. But that being said, some products truly are game-changers that allow you to stay in the field longer, help your accuracy, or help you recover your animal quicker.

Practice and Hunting Tips

Hunting shows allow us to take part in hunting situations that we might not be able to otherwise. Instead of putting in days or weeks on stand, we get to see consolidated clips summarizing thousands of hours of hunting. This is sometimes detrimental because it might give us false expectations about hunting. You’re not likely going to see a 170+ inch giant step out from behind every cedar. But it also lets us learn through repetition very quickly. We can observe and learn from the unfortunate mistakes of others or notice trends in animal behavior that we might not catch ourselves. These are things we can apply to our own situations to make us better hunters.

Practice and Hunting Tips | Head Hunters TV

Similarly, most hunting videos also illustrate good practice techniques and teach us ways to improve our shooting, tracking, or scouting skills. Pay attention the next time you watch a hunting show, and I’ll bet they teach you at least one good practice and hunting tip you can apply to improve yourself.

New Animals and Locations

Many hunting programs take us to exotic and exciting places around the world to chase even stranger game animals. Most of us won’t ever get a chance to go to a big outfitter one day halfway around the world, and so we can somewhat live vicariously through hunting videos. However, if you have the means and determination to visit a different location and pursue an animal you haven’t before, these hunting shows offer a glimpse at what you’re getting yourself into. 

It’s Not Always about the Kill

Many hunting programs of the past really focused on the end result: BBD (Big Buck Down). Recently, however, there’s been a noticeable shift in outdoor television. It’s not only about the kill anymore. It’s about camaraderie around the camp, being out in nature to unwind, and just watching one of your favorite animals. A fat doe in the freezer or a nice mature buck in the back of the truck is just the cherry on top. We should reflect this societal change in our own hunting styles. Look at hunting as more than just killing an animal, because that’s such a small part of the overall picture and appeal. You know what they say. A bad day in the woods is better than a good day at work.

It's Not Always about the Kill | Head Hunters TV

So the next time someone criticizes you for sitting and watching hours of hunting shows, tell them you’re just studying to become a better hunter. Most of us are visual learners, so what better way is there to do so short of actually hunting yourself? Over the course of a year, you can pick up many lessons that you can apply to next season. Have fun studying!

Deer Hunting Conundrum | Limited Time to Hunt Leads to Making Poor Decisions

Successful Deer Hunting May Mean Staying Out of the Woods

It is widely understood that deer hunting requires a certain level of patience in order to be successful. It may surprise you to learn that, although this is a well-known fact, many Head Hunters out there will prove to be impatient this fall. They will hit the woods…when in all actuality their time and season would have been better off staying out!

One of the simplest and all too common mistakes that deer hunters will make this year is to become impatient. This causes one to hit the woods time and time again, when conditions or circumstance are not optimal. We all feel this, when October rolls around, antlers fill our news feed, texts, and eventually consumes our mind. Hunters realize that patience is required to be successful but many fail to analyze the conditions before going out. In turn, their deer hunting and entire hunting season are placed in jeopardy.

When it comes to deer hunting most hunters are extremely pressed for time. Most have jobs, careers, and families that are all biding for their time. When a hunter finds themselves under the impression that time is limited, they can begin to feel anxious. The need to get to the deer stand or blind is overwhelming. Anxiety, especially when it comes to deer hunting, can cause a hunter to make bad decisions that can ruin a hunting season. Most of this comes from hunting in undesirable conditions. The good news is, with a little understanding and foresight you can help to curb some of these emotions.

While it is true that the daily grind limits a hunter to minimum time in the stand, it is vital to make the most out of every hour. Never hit the field if the weather conditions are not favorable for your set. Stacking your trips or vacations around the passage of cold fronts, rising pressure, patterned buck movements, and prime days of the rut is a successful tactic. This requires paying close attention to the weather, wind, deer movements, and running several trail cameras. Keeping pressure off of stands until all odds are stacked in your favor. Pressure kills a property quick, no matter the size. Having limited time almost becomes an advantage when applying this principle. Forcing you to stay out. Do your homework on top of this and carefully select the days you go out, and you will have a recipe for success.

If you are feeling the push to get into the deer stand for fear of the season slipping by, be sure to stack the odds in your favor and hunt during the best possible conditions. Be sure to use all the tools available to you to inform your decisions on where and when you hunt. Don’t let the emotions and antlers in your head get the best of you.

Deer Hunting | Focusing On One Mature Buck

Tactics to Bring That One Mature Buck Down

Watching an individual mature buck starting from a two year old, then harvesting him when he is five is an impressive accomplishment. This is especially true for resident bucks, passing them each year until they reach full potential. It’s quite a feat to do, but extremely difficult. In order to do it you need to do your homework, and that starts now and continues every month after! Deer hunting is one thing, going after one smart and mature buck is a different beast entirely. It’s the definition of Head Hunters TV.

It takes focus during all of the deer hunting season, and more. This starts with summer patterning. Bean fields and trail cameras over mineral blocks allow you to find out one if he’s on the property and two what his pattern is. This reveals your first real opportunity at harvesting him. If your season is early enough you can still catch him on this pattern. If not you will have to adjust to the changes with a change in your tactics.

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Once the days get shorter, and the leaves and acorns begin to fall your commitment for that one mature buck may be strained. The summer pattern becomes nonexistent, your mind will tell you he has gone nocturnal or moved to a different property. In this hard time the white oak flats, small fall food plots, and there relevance to bedding areas are your best bet in catching him in daylight. Again trail cameras will help you narrow down his core area. Take all the locations you have seen him while hunting and the photos from trail cameras and put it on a map of the property. Identify any terrain features, water sources, funnels, bedding area, or anything that can help cut him off. Do your best to keep up with him before the rut. Once it’s here, that buck could end up anywhere, including the sites of your neighbor, on the other hand the rut could be the best time to harvest him. It’s really anyone’s guess at that point. Once snow starts falling, you regain your ability to pattern him but you’re running a tight schedule to the end of the deer hunting season. Late season food sources like beans or brassicas are a good place to start.

During any of these times it’s important to remember what keeps that buck alive, his nose. He has mastered the winds and thermals. So it’s vital that you remember not to hunt the wind. No it’s not a typo… once you start going after a mature buck you have to hunt him because he hunts the wind. For example, take a food plot with a wind coming out of the west. Normally you would set up on the east side of the plot, making sure to get a shot from any direction he might come from. Chances are you will strike out with that tactic. Instead of setting up right outside the plot, go east an extra 50-100 yards. The mature buck will only enter that plot after going checking the wind off of it, putting him right under your stand instead of downwind of you.

During the entire hunt for one mature buck, you need to be on your “A” game. This means extra attention to your scent, your entrances and exits to sets, the wind, and overall the pressure you put on him. Every little bit helps.