Deer Hunting Tips and Tricks for Success
Deer hunting tips that help fill your tag and freezer
You’ll be well on your way to consistently harvesting white-tailed deer and having the time of your life outdoors just by following the four simple deer hunting tips and tricks outlined below. Oh, and these tips work whether you’re hunting trophies or just putting food on the table.
- This tip is a biggie. It’s difficult to harvest a whitetail when you haven’t even learned to shoot your gun or bow well. And to be honest, it’s downright unethical to shoot at deer when you’re not 100% sure you can make a clean kill. Practice year round. And remember, excuses wound animals and keep your freezer empty.
Practice shooting your gun and bow while wearing both your lightweight and heavyweight clothing. Put on everything – hats, gloves, thick jackets, mask, etc. – and get used to the feeling of shooting with bulky clothing. Don’t do this and your extra clothing and gear could get in the way causing you to miss an animal (or worse, wound it!).
Get to know your woods
Know your hunting area well so you can make a good mental map of where deer bed, feed, and do everything else. If you don’t know where they’re at and why they’re there, then blind luck has just become your best friend. Like any good hunter, you need to create your own luck. To get better at this tip, try the following:
- Put on your hiking shoes and cover your hunting area from top to bottom in the spring. It’s not a big deal if you spook deer, you can scout for sign like rubs and scrapes and map future stand locations, and you might even find a shed antler or two. It’s a great excuse to get outside and you’ll know every spot other hunters on your land don’t.
- A topo map and/or aerial photos are invaluable tools for learning your property, even if you know it well. They’ll reveal hidden bottlenecks and funnels, edges and food sources – secret spots that give you an edge over other hunters.
Control your scent and increase your success
Want a leg up on about 99% of other hunters? Keep your clean hunting clothes and pack in plastic garbage bags (some people even throw in dirt, pine needles, scent wafers, etc. to give their clothing and packs a natural, earthy smell) and don’t take them out until you get to your hunting destination. Change into them outside your vehicle and you’ll have (mostly) human scent-free clothing. Most hunters go wrong by wearing their camo to their hunting spot. You’ll see them pre-hunt – pumping gas, eating at smelly diners, and soaking up the air freshener in their vehicle – only to take these smells with them into the woods. There’s nothing like telling every deer around you’ve arrived.
Learn why whitetails do what they do, and elevate your game
Here’s another deer hunting tip that may be the most important of all. Stop randomly (if not blindly) selecting your stand or blind locations and start learning the who, what, why and where of deer behavior. Why and how do does choose bucks and how can this help you? What are the main deer food sources, and what are the alternatives when others dry up? What are the biggest bucks doing that the smaller ones are not? Why do deer like edges? There’s lots to cover when it comes to deer behavior and how you can exploit it to your benefit.
For everything you need to know about whitetail behavior and how to use it to your advantage, download this fantastic e-book that comes with lots of great extras. You can’t go wrong with information that’s sure to help your success.