It’s the middle of the week – and I am home for a day to clean my gear and regroup. We had a fantastic weekend of rut hunting in Pepin County Wisconsin this weekend. We easily saw 15 mature bucks (all different) chasing does. The “seek and chase” portion of the rut is definitely in full swing. We had unbelievable luck using a combination of calls and a decoy (converted to a doe). Tonight I am packing my gear and planning to get ahead of the cold weather/front coming in this weekend and heading to SE Minnesota to hunt 165 prime acres.
Below is what I use in the field when calling and decoying:
A couple of tips regarding the use of these products:
1. #1 hands down is NO situation is the same – sometimes these things work, and sometimes they don’t. Calling, Decoying, etc. can be an absolute blast and depends highly on the deer you are hunting. The higher the Buck-Doe Ratio and the more “seek and chase” phase your area is experiencing the better. Some deer are aggressive and interested and others may be spooked – the chance you take when doing this technique.
2. Buck calls will scare does – especially this time of year. We observed several different does running scared – at all hours of the day. Big bucks, little bucks, all bucks are chasing does around this time of year – and most of the time they are trying to escape!
3. A decoy can be used as a buck (to entice a fight) or as a doe (to spark curiosity). If you are hunting a dominant buck – a doe or buck tending a doe can be a deadly combination. If you use calls frequently – considering adding a decoy to the mix; this gives a reason for the call they are hearing.
4. Decoys are basically scent stations for deer – When possible place the decoy upwind of your stand; this will force any interested deer to go downwind (directly in front of you) and hopefully give you a chance for a shot. Don’t skimp on scent elimination on and around your decoy, a quality scent killer and careful handling is crucial.
5. Buck decoys should face how you want them to approach (antler to antler) and the reverse for does. Bucks will come from tail end to scent check a doe; hopefully you will be ready @ full draw as he approaches.
The rut is rocking in my areas! I can't remember a time seeing this many mature deer! The weather may have slowed movement for you mid-week hunters – but it will start to pick up tomorrow with this cold front moving in… maybe even add a little snow to the mix.
Remember Bowhunt or Die!
See you in the woods,