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Thread: Big bucks only at night

  1. #1
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    Default Big bucks only at night

    Hi guys-the season is far,but a question is bothering me.
    I hunt a small bush other then many public places in 80-82A.
    This bush is a deer paradise..so to say.Tracks everywhere,and the lot has on the highway end a deer crossing sign too-so it is a deer crossing-funnel or sort.
    The lot is 200 m wide,so it is hard to catch all thru it.It runs north-south to make it harder for the westerly winds.

    The lot is mixed bush and some trees,scarce evergreen.
    I have 3 cameras out there ,one spot for 10 years.I have many pictures of great bucks-mostly at night.

    Have maybe 30 different animals over they years,and saw only one -and shot the same one,from the pile of great bucks i have pictures from.................
    In 15 years,4 animals taken there.Only one reasonable buck .........

    I hunt middle,and little bit the edge.Tree and ground blinds.

    Any idea or advice how to be more successful there..............

    Cheers

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  3. #2
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    if youre getting predominantly pictures at night I would venture to guess the deer do not bed near that area...aside from a few weeks in the rut these bucks dont move very far from their bedding areas during daylight..id explore the area more into some thicker nastier stuff where they may be potentially bedding..or if youre into this sort of stuff and are allowed to, perhaps hinge cut some trees and create some bedding areas

  4. #3
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    I keep a pretty good eye on my property's hunting area with Trail Cams year round and you right, most bucks I capture pics of are nocturnal, even in the off season. There is no hunting pressure (only me) hunting here so it can't be blamed on 'going' nocturnal....it appears to be just more the norm.

    In fact the majority of the daytime pics of Big Bucks that I get are during the Rut...as can be expected. The property holds Does and fawns year round so I see a lot of 'stranger' bucks in the area during the Rut.

    The only 'trick' I know that works for me is to hunt during the peek Rut period (14-21 Nov) and hunt mid-day back in the bush close to transition trails. Deer feed and water 4-5 times a day, so they move about. A lot of guys only hunt dawn and dusk and miss a lot of the daytime hunting opportunities. I shoot a lot of deer around 2:00 in the afternoon.
    Arte et marte (By Skill and by Fighting)...The RCEME motto

  5. #4
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    You need to look at the bigger picture to see if you can piece together a buck’s potential home range. Bucks will hop-scotch their way through their home range. Perhaps there are things going on in the surrounding area that confine deer travel in your spot to the night/time hours.

    Except for the spring and rut, most (not all) deer activity on my 6 cameras is under the cover of darkness.

  6. #5
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    Same here. Always nocturnal big bucks......until Halloween to second week of November. I know they move in the daylight during this time. Might not be everyday, or very often, But I try to be out as much as I can during this time, All day sits waiting for them to make the mistake.

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  7. #6
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    So from what I’ve read and seen first hand you don’t want huge mature bucks on your land in the off season. During the rut stages they always take off ( majority of time ) and go on vacation looking for the out of town ladies. Sometimes it’s just inevitable and it’s how the deer use the land. As some of the guys have said, try and venture to knew pieces of your property. Get in there a bit more and use cameras in other locations you never have. You literally can be 50 yards from their main travel area and just missing them with cameras, brush etc. On my farms for example it rotates from year to year. Last year I had bachelor groups of bucks and this year so far it’s all does. Last year out of all the bucks I had on camera we only got one of the bucks we had on the cams and it was just a two year old 7 point. The big mature bucks showed up the week of oct 24th- nov 1. Showed up on cam 1pm and 45 mins before light on Halloween. The two big ones usually come and go and don’t stick around long and have does with them when they do show up. It’s taken years to learn and this and even now I’m always expanding and trying new areas to see how it behaves. I recommend doing the same. Deer are very smart and if you have stands that have been up for 10 years think how many generations of deer have been educated and taught to avoid these areas at those times.

  8. #7
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    Thanx guys-keep it coming.....great ideas.
    The lot is quite a challenge to walk thru(many dead falls and thick bush)and the outskirts of the woodlot is in tall weeds(until snow and frost does not kill them -it is a hard labor to even walk thru)So i guess,the deer know where no one goes-they do.
    The lot is also bordered on East side with a 100 m wide bush,to which i have no acess,then plowed field.To the North is the road-then a HUGE bush(that is why the deer are crossing there- I think)to the South is a ditch and a non used farm field,and to the West is a farmfield with adjacent bush.I think the deer living there made it for themselves with the large Real Estate and the low human usage all around.
    I never sat there all day-or in midday(i did it at other places ,with better visibility though )but that is an idea to consider.
    For stands being discovered-i have a mixed experience about that,but for sure the 4 deer i took from there i took every each from the 4 of them from a different spot,spot i hunted first time ever in my life........The mixed feeling is,i have harvested from there 3 out of the 4 deer from treestands,which i have prepared in advance-and i do quite a workout out from tree preparation.In April-May though -so that may not matter much.
    I will try to go deeper ,and switch places,and see what happens.
    Cheers
    Last edited by gbk; June 2nd, 2020 at 04:39 PM.

  9. #8
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    Have you tried calling and rattling?


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  10. #9
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    Yep,i did tried to call ,got even busted last year by an unseen deer(tail of a deer does not tells much).Called,set on aground on a random spot,to try something new,and beacuse many trees are dying there(EAB)so was unsure where to set up.Then in 15 min this deer comes over-to my calling,i recon.I had to slouch my head just at the second he was staring at me(unknown to me)from about 20 yards,just to see my head going backwards,and me seeing the deer vanish from my life..........

  11. #10
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    Did you tried to make a feeder which only feed during the daylight , and not at night ...?
    This could change the deer night feeding habit ... (Little feeder programming )


    Quote Originally Posted by gbk View Post
    Yep,i did tried to call ,got even busted last year by an unseen deer(tail of a deer does not tells much).Called,set on aground on a random spot,to try something new,and beacuse many trees are dying there(EAB)so was unsure where to set up.Then in 15 min this deer comes over-to my calling,i recon.I had to slouch my head just at the second he was staring at me(unknown to me)from about 20 yards,just to see my head going backwards,and me seeing the deer vanish from my life..........

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