Steve Bartylla-question D and DH Jan. 2015


5 year old buck +
I enjoyed the article, Steve. Question-You talk about bucks not following the pattern that hunters think they should. The specific example was deer not using a funnel that looked to be ideal.

Darren Warner article, page 22, discusses bucks staying away from a stand for 3-4 days after the stand has been used once. BSK attributes this to ground scent left in the area of the stand.

For the location you mentioned at the start of your article, was there sign of other hunters using the funnel during previous days?

My other thought are that a funnel that is heavily hunted for years can result in does training their fawns (who grow to become bucks) to bypass certain areas from experience.

What are your thoughts?

Thanks, 'Bur.
I agree with all of what you wrote, in that each are very valid reasons for deer to avoid areas. There are a lot more, as well.

In this specific case, none of that applied. They give me real tight word counts, at D&DH. So, I have to try to say as much with as few of words as possible. When I wrote I knew I'd kill from that stand (which I didn't and the bucks didn't use), that was in the spring, when I'd put the stand up. I left the area alone until I climbed up the tree to hunt it that fall. This was back in the days that bowhunting was a rarity in N MO (MO most likely remembers when I'm talking about, assuming he started heading to N MO 15ish yrs ago or more). So, other hunters' pressure was a non issue, as well...except for hunting from trucks, which was huge in that area in those days.

I'll be honest, I never did figure out why the older bucks avoided the text book funnel and crossed the wide open pasture, instead. I can tell you that pasture crossing stand was the outfitter I was consulting for's go to spot all the way up until he quit outfitting...and the text book funnel was where he sent hunters that really got on his nerves.

No doubt you got the underlying point of the piece. Deer don't always do what we believe they should. So, no matter how stupid it may seem, when they tell you to move "here" to kill them, don't argue, just do it.
I've got an excellent funnel that I have hunted for 47 years, but it went dead this year. Extremely low deer numbers and the neighbor was cutting wood and put a stand up just south of me about 150 yards.

I still am trying to figure out if it's the neighbor and his activity, just plain low deer numbers, or if they are moving to the field and crossing thru a pasture.. Answer is al three and time to drop another stand about 50 yards away. I think.
Good stuff Steve, keep it coming!