Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Choosing A Deer Stand Can Be A Coin Toss


Flip a quarter in the air, and call heads or tails. Heads would put you in a tall pine and downwind of where deer travel. Tails would put you in a ground blind and downwind of where whitetails move.

I’ve tried putting many years of watching deer on my land to good use, and at times, guessing where I should sit could just as easily boil down to a coin flip. I know where deer normally will move on any wind direction but a bright, full moon-lit night or high winds can make all such deliberations a guess at best. Frankly, at times choosing a deer stand is a roll of the dice.

Only my wife picked a really good spot tonight. She saw several bucks chasing does, and everything was on the move. Does that had already been bred moved out of the way of the bucks, and went back to feeding. She saw a pair of 4-pointers and three small 8-pointers, and some button bucks, but she was doe fawn hunting on this particular evening.

She could have shot a dozen mature does but she’s helping me fill our quota of doe fawns that are necessary to help keep our antlerless deer numbers in line with the landowner’s management plan. She shot a doe fawn last night, and was hoping for another tonight to bring her closer to a chance for a nice buck.

I saw some does, and two small bucks, but no doe fawns. A friend spotted a gimpy-legged doe fawn, but the small deer was just too far out of decent shooting range.

Three others didn’t see a deer ... buck, doe or fawn. The weather may have had something to do with the poor hunting conditions, and many deer simply didn’t move until long after dark.

We’ll tough it out for another four or five days, and let the moon work its way to the new moon and do its job on deer movements. We’ll continue to hunt, but several have said they will probably try a different spot for the next few days. Can’t blame ‘em when things get tough. Moving may make a difference.

Staying put in a good spot makes perfect sense right now but moving to a different stand for a change of scenery also shows some promise. Me, I’ll keep moving around. I hate sitting in the same stand night after night. I’m willing to take my chances with the deer but I always choose a stand that puts the wind in my favor.

Who knows. As some southern deer-hunting friends say: “Even a blind sow can find an acorn once in a while.” Hopefully, a big doe fawn will amble out in front of me, and offer a good clear shot.

We’ve about finished taking doe fawns, and soon we’ll be taking a few bucks. It’s a time we’re all waiting for, and with the rut in its chasing phase right now, we should start seeing some nice bucks, and sometimes all it takes is a change of hunting stands. 

Posted by Dave Richey on 10/22 at 06:45 PM
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