Monday, October 13, 2008
Mistakes deer hunters make (Part 4)
© By Othmar Vohringer
In this edition of the mistake series I would like to discuss with you what I consider to be the fourth biggest mistakes hunters make: Getting patterned by deer.
“I scout every day and all year long. I know every deer in my hunting area” said the hunter with pride. This hunter is at the opposite end of the scale that I discussed in Improper Scouting of the second edition of Mistakes Hunters Make. (see link at the bottom of this article) While there is certainly such a thing as scouting not enough, there is also the problem of scouting too much.
Ironically, the hunter mentioned at the beginning complained that no matter how much he scouts and how well he knows each deer and what they’re doing, he still has failed each season to kill a mature buck. I was not surprised to hear that.
First I do not believe that a mature buck can be patterned. Once the rut begins a buck will be traveling day and night in search of receptive does. There is just no prediction when and where he will turn up with any amount of certainty that would come close to calling it pattern movement.
The other problem of course is that while the hunter does that sort of intensive scouting he will be patterned by the deer. In fact the deer, especially mature bucks, will have figured out the hunters comings and goings, and activities long before the hunter knows what the deer do.
With that much walking, hanging stands, exploring and polluting the area with human scent it is relatively easy for deer to keep track of these intensive scouting hunters. By the time hunting season rolls around the deer are familiar with everything these hunters do.
The best chance we get at killing a mature buck is the very first time we hunt them. Each consecutive time will greatly reduce our chances of success. Getting patterned by deer does not only happen to the hunter that scouts every day all year long. It can happen and does happen to all of us.
Many hunters are predictable. They park the truck every time at the same location and then walk the same route to and from their treestands. By doing that we leave a scent trail that gets stronger each time we repeat our visit to that same stand using the same route. “Ah”, I hear some of you say. “I use scent eliminating spray and wear rubber boots. There is no way the buck can smell a scent trail from me.” That maybe so, but that is no guarantee. As we walk through the woods we can’t help but brush up against vegetation or touch it with our bar hands. No matter how carefully we walk we still make some typical human noises. Repeat this a few times and the deer will have you figured out. To think otherwise is a huge mistake. Deer survive by been well informed what goes on around them and to never let their guard down. Especially older deer are masters at patterning hunters.
Tags: Deer hunting Tips, Hunting Tactics, Scouting, Patterning Big Bucks
Read related articles:
Mistakes deer Hunters Make (Part 1)
Mistakes deer Hunters Make (Part 2)
Mistakes deer Hunters Make (Part 3)