Misconceptions in deer hunting

One of the comments posted to my video about setting up a deer blind kinda struck me.  The comment went something like setting up a deer blind was along the lines of deer camping and that I might as well be shooting deer on a deer farm.

I am going to guess that the person posting the comments has never had the opportunity to watch deer in its natural state?

It seems to me that people think deer hunting is easy, that you can sneak up on a deer, and you will have meat on the table. That is about as far from the truth as you can get.

If deer can stay away from natural predators, how does a city slicker think they can walk into the woods and find a deer?

Deer rely on 4 defensive mechanisms – scent, sound, movement and camouflage.

Scent – if the wind is blowing the wrong direction, you might as well forget about it. I have seen deer over 75 yards away spooked and dart into the woods when the wind shifted. If the deer are downwind from you, forget it.

A couple of years ago the wind was swirling around the stand while there were a couple of does on a logging road. Everytime the wind swirled so the deer were downwind, the older doe would stick its nose straight up in the air and sniff. She would look around, get uneasy, dart into the tree line for a few minutes, then come back out when she settled down.

Getting your scent downwind from the deer is one of the most important things you can do.

Sound – Deer have big ears for a reason.

Think about this, deer live in the woods 24/7/365. If you hear a strange sound around your house, you know its strange because you live there. The same goes for deer, they know when there is a strange sound that is out of place.

I am 43 years old and have been in the woods since I was old enough to follow my dad on his squirrel hunting trips. I can probably count on 2 hands how many times I have walked up on a deer.  Deer can hear you walking from a long ways off, and they are usually smart enough to get out of the way.

Movement – deer have big eyes for a reason, and they are to spot little red riding hood and the big bad wolf from a mile away.

One of the reasons why hunters use a deer blind, is so they can move without the deer seeing the movement.

Predators move slow, and move low, the only way deer can stay ahead of the predators is to see, hear or smell the predator before its too late.

Camouflage – deer are like ghost in the mist, one second they are there and the next second they are gone.

Why do you see lots of bucks on the trail camera before season starts, and then they disappear?  When the does go into rut, bucks turn into teenage boys.  All they think about is scoring with a doe, and the bucks will travel far and low to breed.

The myth of the solitary doe – there is a common myth that says a solitary doe did not have a yawn during the spring and the doe should be culled.

The truth is, does have a greater then 90% chance of being bred during the rut.  If there is no fawn with a doe during the fall, either a buck chased the fawn off so he could breed with the doe, the fawn was killed by a predator or the fawn died due to some other cause such as disease.

Whitetail Deer looking at trail cameraElectronic devices scare deer – Whitetail deer are curious animals, if they hear something out of the usual they might decide to take a look. This is why you see various pictures of deer taking a close look at trail cameras.

There have been several times when I was in a stand, turned on my camera, the deer jumped, looked around and then back to whatever it was doing.

Electronic devices are a “different” sound then deer are used to. With whitetail deer, its all about the usual stuff. If sounds scared deer, they would not stand on the side of highways eating weeds or grass.