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Old 09-29-2011, 07:55 AM
thomasmgp thomasmgp is offline
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Default Need advice on drawing deer out.

I have a sweet stand back in the woods. Its about a 5 min walk to the river so they have a water source and theres acorns every where. I have also put out 2 corn piles. One corn pile looks like an all you can eat buffet after a bus of fat chicks hit it. Completely gone after 2 days. The second one is about half eaten. But I have yet to see a single deer go to the eaten corn pile and have hunted this stand 3 mornings.

Now the half eaten corn pile always brings in the same 2 deer at around the same time. They are about the size of my 4 year old yellow lab just taller so I would say they are yearlings as they dont have their spots. I watch them for about 15-20 mins every morning and I think they might be brother and sister. They move in and out of the pile eating some corn and then probably acorns. They never look at me but about every 30 seconds the both look up and right into the thick woods next to them, then they go back to eating. Eventually they kind of half run half walk away. Not the full blown " Haha I see your ass in that stand" spooked run but kinda of a fast walk.

I dont know much about Deer behavior but I have watched enough national geographic specials on other animals and usually when smaller animals scamper away from a food source it means a dominant larger one is close by. Is this the same with deer? Are they leaving because theres a big Buck close by? We dont have any predators like bears around and my land is big enough so no other person could be causing them to leave the corn pile in such a hurry.

I keep waiting, not moving or making a sound but nothing ever comes out. If thats the case, and there is a big buck back there, how do I get him out of the woods and into the opening for a shot? Im not familiar with calls, even though I have two, Im scared I would do more harm by using them.
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Old 09-29-2011, 10:12 AM
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tator tator is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thomasmgp View Post
One corn pile looks like an all you can eat buffet after a bus of fat chicks hit it. Completely gone after 2 days. The second one is about half eaten. But I have yet to see a single deer go to the eaten corn pile and have hunted this stand 3 mornings..
Thomas- First off welcome from MISSOURI! It sounds to me like you have a nice herd of COONS eating your corn. They can demolish a corn pile in one night if there's enough of them. Are you currently using a trail cam over the pile? This time of year, deer are the most active during the late evening hours and at night. If you are in the woods during the day, they typically are bedded up and not going to move unless you come within 100yds or so of them. As temps begin to drop, deer will become more and more visible during the daylight hours. Once the rut hits, (breeding time) they are on their feet alot. To me, you are doing the right thing, but I would check into some trail cams and see what's coming and going around your feeding areas.



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Originally Posted by thomasmgp View Post
I keep waiting, not moving or making a sound but nothing ever comes out. If thats the case, and there is a big buck back there, how do I get him out of the woods and into the opening for a shot? Im not familiar with calls, even though I have two, Im scared I would do more harm by using them.
Patience, Patience, Patience! This is where trail cams come handy. If you can get a buck on camera, then you can half way start to pattern where he's at, at a certain time of day. I use calls all the time. Just make sure you are not OVER using them. Remember deer can not only smell well, they can HEAR really well too. So if you have a buck w/in 200yds of you and you make a grunt call that is so loud that it sounds to that buck that you are 10yds away, you're probably going to spook him. Make your calls believable. That's one problem I had, I was calling too loud when I first began hunting. The same goes for rattling, if you are ABSOLUTELY sure there are no deer within 300yds or more then GO at that rattling hard. But if you're not 100% sure, then it's best to do more soft rattling that is more believable to a buck.

Good luck to you man!
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Old 09-29-2011, 12:05 PM
VolHunter VolHunter is offline
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Default Perspective from a Wildlife Biologist/hunter

Some facts from a biologist standpoint:

1. Most of bait that is put out falls to depredation of "non-target species". This means that a lot of what you are putting out is getting eaten by mice, squirrels, turkeys, coons, and possums. Therefore, just because you are seeing piles dissappear doesn't mean deer are the main culprits. It is truly surprising how much food small mammals can go through.

2. You are correct about the deer behavior. Especially in low food supply areas, more dominant deer will out compete the younger/smaller deer. The behavior you are seeing could definitely be coming from a big buck (or even a dominant, mean doe). Thing is, these deer could be hearing him walk through the leaves, get a whiff of his smell, etc...and this could mean he simply somewhere in the vacinity.

However, depending on the amount of coyotes and bobcats in the area, they could be sensing predators around them. Remember, when you make a food area that brings in small mammals/deer, you are making a food area for predators to concentrate on as well. And believe it or not, I've seen dominant bucks get spooked from an area by a single bobcat.

3. As a biologist, I have to say that even though it is legal to bait in several states it is not biologically sound. Keeping the piles small and scattered over a landscape can help keep disease down and "baitcasting" (speading corn with a sower or by hand over an area) can increase the number of deer seen (gives more area for multiple deer to feed at one time) while still lessening the chance of disease spread between your deer.

As a fellow hunter:

1. Try hunting all day long over these piles. Deer pattern us hunters just as well as we pattern them. Being there at an "odd" time can increase your chances of catching him off guard. Also, you will get a better idea of what is eating your corn.

2. Try not hunting right over the bait, instead make several piles a decent distance away from a bedding area and then hunt the travel route between the bedding area and the bait. Since many of your deer (large/old bucks included) move at dawn/dusk, you might not be able to catch them at the feeding sight but will catch them coming or going.

3. Depending on the food quality in your area you might want to try and do some winter wheat planting. It's easy to plant (just sow it out), requires basically no tending, and has a maturation date of often 45-60 days. Providing multiple types of food can drastically increase the deer visiting the area.

4. Try using scents and call depending on what you see in the area. If you are holding a decent bit of does, they will provide all the scent you need in the rut. Rattling, grunting, and using doe bleats can really bring a curious deer a little closer in.

Hope this helps and Good Luck!
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Old 09-30-2011, 01:32 PM
VA Hunter VA Hunter is offline
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I see you have hunted the mornings buth have you tried hunting in the evening all the way to dark. That is when I have had the most luck here is Virginia during this part of the season. If not you should give it try and see what is moving around. But like the other guy said it could be any number of different animals eating the corn. They all love it.
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Old 09-30-2011, 08:19 PM
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rdrader2002 rdrader2002 is offline
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Default Hunt near dark

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Originally Posted by VA Hunter View Post
I see you have hunted the mornings buth have you tried hunting in the evening all the way to dark. That is when I have had the most luck here is Virginia during this part of the season. If not you should give it try and see what is moving around. But like the other guy said it could be any number of different animals eating the corn. They all love it.
I have gotten more deer at dusk than I have at dawn here in Texas. I'm not saying that they're not showing up at dawn, it's just that I've had better luck putting them into the freezer around dusk than I have at dawn.

RR
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Old 10-01-2011, 07:55 AM
thomasmgp thomasmgp is offline
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Originally Posted by VA Hunter View Post
I see you have hunted the mornings buth have you tried hunting in the evening all the way to dark. That is when I have had the most luck here is Virginia during this part of the season. If not you should give it try and see what is moving around. But like the other guy said it could be any number of different animals eating the corn. They all love it.
I dont like hunting this place in the evening because it gets dark back there in a hurry once the sun starts going down. I prefer my field stands at night because it allowed me to hunt longer as I can actually see once the sun starts setting. Getting 2 Primose Truth Cam 35s to put up to see whats out there today.
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