What is the mental dynamic involved

SwampCat

5 year old buck +
Thats what I mean. Spending all that time worrying about what others shoot is not fun to me. Right now i worry more about numbers shot than size of deer shot.
I found, with myself, an inverse proportion to the number of deer seen versus the number of deer shot. Forty years ago, I shot every legal deer I could - I might see three or four in a year and kill a couple. Now, I might see thirty in a day - and I havent killed a deer in two years.

But no doubt, I find a lack of enthusiasm just hunting for antlers because of a low number of excitable encounters with big deer in a year. Conversely, I dont get excited about shooting one of the dozens of lesser deer I see each day. I have reached an odd position. My family does most of the killing and I get excited for them.
 

Catscratch

5 year old buck +
In my opinion everyone deserves the opportunity to work from the ground up. I shot little bucks when I was young and have progressively tried to shoot bigger and bigger bucks as I go. It took 30+ years of bowhunting to get to where I'm at now and I'm perfectly happy shooting what I shoot, or eating tag soup. I have no intentions of denying a kid, younger adult, or newbie (my own or the neighbors) the same progression. We have different goals and it's rightfully so. The neighbor's management program and mine might not align on a personal level, but if they shoot the buck I've let walk 5 times so be it. Back to relating it to running. A kid or newbie shouldn't even consider running 100 miles a week, they should start at 15-20 and work their way up. Some will take to it and eventually strive for that kind of big mileage, some will stop progressing after hitting 30 mpw. We're all going to hit a redline at some level.

My management and hunting is a lot of work. But it's fun work and I'm not much for sitting around so it's as good as anything. Haven't lost any enjoyment of it.
 

yoderjac

5 year old buck +
Yeah I could definitely start a whole discussion about cams and even more specifically cell cams. I’m on both sides of the fence with it but if they were illegal I would cheer.
Not me. They are a critical part of my QDM management plan. Mine are not cell, they are 900mhz wireless with solar that run 24/7/365. I've been running this camera network over 10 years and it transmits full resolution pictures back to camp where they are stored on a local computer. Once every week or two, I copy them to my laptop for review and entry into my database. They let me trend the herd year to year. They allow me to evaluate the impact of habitat decisions including timber management as to how they impact the herd.

I find them almost zero help in hunting, especially mature deer. They are of some help when I want to take a kid out. I can tell which box blinds have had deer feeding nearby during shooting hours in the last week or so than others. They are still no guarantee, but they increase the chances the kid will see something. My mature deer show up mostly at night and they really don't demonstrate any real pattern. I don't even look at them for stand selection.

We have a log were hunters are required to log each hunt along with observations along with their stand location. We do this for both safety as well as another source of data for QDM analysis. If someone goes out to hunt and does not come back, we know where to look for them. At any rate, knowing the location where others have hunted recently and the trails that are commonly used to get to those locations, it is easy for me to eliminate locations that have had a lot of recent pressure. I find this more productive in stand selection than looking at camera data.

I don't think cell cams are any hunting advantage at all. First, almost all of them only transmit decimated thumbnail pics which are not high enough resolution for analysis purposes. So to do any QDM type analysis, you need to go retrieve SD cards. It is not like they are going to provide any actionable information for hunting. What are you going to do? Get a picture in your stand that there was a deer 5 minutes ago at some other spot on the property and move to that spot? That is just not effective. Knowing deer have been at certain location on your property in the last week without having to check SD cards is the most advantage they can really provide for hunting. I think the best use of them is for folks who live far from their hunting property to get a feel for what deer are using the property.

I think the biggest hunting advantage of game cameras in general is "Building Confidence". Just knowing that mature bucks exist in your area and do use your property give folks the confidence to sit in the stand just a bit more knowing that the big one "could" appear at any time.

Thanks,

Jack
 

SwampCat

5 year old buck +
Not me. They are a critical part of my QDM management plan. Mine are not cell, they are 900mhz wireless with solar that run 24/7/365. I've been running this camera network over 10 years and it transmits full resolution pictures back to camp where they are stored on a local computer. Once every week or two, I copy them to my laptop for review and entry into my database. They let me trend the herd year to year. They allow me to evaluate the impact of habitat decisions including timber management as to how they impact the herd.

I find them almost zero help in hunting, especially mature deer. They are of some help when I want to take a kid out. I can tell which box blinds have had deer feeding nearby during shooting hours in the last week or so than others. They are still no guarantee, but they increase the chances the kid will see something. My mature deer show up mostly at night and they really don't demonstrate any real pattern. I don't even look at them for stand selection.

We have a log were hunters are required to log each hunt along with observations along with their stand location. We do this for both safety as well as another source of data for QDM analysis. If someone goes out to hunt and does not come back, we know where to look for them. At any rate, knowing the location where others have hunted recently and the trails that are commonly used to get to those locations, it is easy for me to eliminate locations that have had a lot of recent pressure. I find this more productive in stand selection than looking at camera data.

I don't think cell cams are any hunting advantage at all. First, almost all of them only transmit decimated thumbnail pics which are not high enough resolution for analysis purposes. So to do any QDM type analysis, you need to go retrieve SD cards. It is not like they are going to provide any actionable information for hunting. What are you going to do? Get a picture in your stand that there was a deer 5 minutes ago at some other spot on the property and move to that spot? That is just not effective. Knowing deer have been at certain location on your property in the last week without having to check SD cards is the most advantage they can really provide for hunting. I think the best use of them is for folks who live far from their hunting property to get a feel for what deer are using the property.

I think the biggest hunting advantage of game cameras in general is "Building Confidence". Just knowing that mature bucks exist in your area and do use your property give folks the confidence to sit in the stand just a bit more knowing that the big one "could" appear at any time.

Thanks,

Jack
I sometimes kill over 100 hogs in a year - strictly due to the use of cell cams. When I get a picture of a hog, I go kill it. I could do the same thing with deer. It would not be as successful, but it would be successful. Last week, during deer season, I got a text of one of our shooter bucks about 600 yards from the house. I had never seen this deer in person, I jumped on the ranger, drove up about 200 yards from where the picture was taken, eased to the top of the hill, and took a look through binoculars at the deer. This is that deer pic - from a tactacam texting cam - one of the cheapest there is. The quality of the pic is plenty good to tell exactly which deer it is. I could probably kill most of the mature deer on my place using texting cameras if I had a mind to do it. And, as far as I know, this deer is still alive.

11.JPG
 

Booner21

5 year old buck +
Not me. They are a critical part of my QDM management plan. Mine are not cell, they are 900mhz wireless with solar that run 24/7/365. I've been running this camera network over 10 years and it transmits full resolution pictures back to camp where they are stored on a local computer. Once every week or two, I copy them to my laptop for review and entry into my database. They let me trend the herd year to year. They allow me to evaluate the impact of habitat decisions including timber management as to how they impact the herd.

I find them almost zero help in hunting, especially mature deer. They are of some help when I want to take a kid out. I can tell which box blinds have had deer feeding nearby during shooting hours in the last week or so than others. They are still no guarantee, but they increase the chances the kid will see something. My mature deer show up mostly at night and they really don't demonstrate any real pattern. I don't even look at them for stand selection.

We have a log were hunters are required to log each hunt along with observations along with their stand location. We do this for both safety as well as another source of data for QDM analysis. If someone goes out to hunt and does not come back, we know where to look for them. At any rate, knowing the location where others have hunted recently and the trails that are commonly used to get to those locations, it is easy for me to eliminate locations that have had a lot of recent pressure. I find this more productive in stand selection than looking at camera data.

I don't think cell cams are any hunting advantage at all. First, almost all of them only transmit decimated thumbnail pics which are not high enough resolution for analysis purposes. So to do any QDM type analysis, you need to go retrieve SD cards. It is not like they are going to provide any actionable information for hunting. What are you going to do? Get a picture in your stand that there was a deer 5 minutes ago at some other spot on the property and move to that spot? That is just not effective. Knowing deer have been at certain location on your property in the last week without having to check SD cards is the most advantage they can really provide for hunting. I think the best use of them is for folks who live far from their hunting property to get a feel for what deer are using the property.

I think the biggest hunting advantage of game cameras in general is "Building Confidence". Just knowing that mature bucks exist in your area and do use your property give folks the confidence to sit in the stand just a bit more knowing that the big one "could" appear at any time.

Thanks,

Jack

I think you are completely wrong on providing info for hunting My friend killed 2 mature bucks after getting cell pics and moving stands within minutes of getting a picture. I have also shot a deer this year I got a picture of him doing what I assume was going back to bed. I happened to be walking to the stand when I got the pic due to the delay but the confidence went up. Sure enough the deer came out of his bed and came past the stand I was in.


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Turkish

5 year old buck +
I didn’t read all of the comments.

Please just remember that deer hunting is not a competition. It needs to be fun. You need to change something’s if it is no longer fun and is only frustration.

Change your location , change your goals, or change your attitude.


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Wow! Incredible advice and post! Thank you.
 

Bassattackr

5 year old buck +
There are many different reasons, and I think they all come down to one thing: that individual doesn’t really care about shooting mature bucks. Hunters who are serious about shooting mature bucks know you absolutely have to pass the small ones and commit to that practice to the point that they are willing to eat tag soup. The majority of hunters don’t care that much and will fill the tag at the first opportunity. Period. And they’ll shoot small bucks for any number of reasons, some I can understand and sympathize with, others I don’t agree with but that’s the nature of deer hunting. These are wild free range animals, with lots of hunters pursuing those animals for varying reasons.

Hell I wish everyone would pass that 140” 10 pointer 3 year old and shoot the 5 year old stubby 8 point, but if they’re both standing out there next to each other, most hunters will shoot the 10 point with oodles of potential. I guess I have to be happy that most forkhorns around me get a pass.


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Some good points here. For a lot of guys..

Ego.

Want to brag to everyone they “got their buck” this year. About checking the box. These are also the same guys that complain they don’t see any big bucks.. Can’t cure stupid.
 

SwampCat

5 year old buck +
When I really got going deer hunting, our state had no antler restriction and I hunted the first 11 years after moving here before I saw a buck that was 3 yrs old. I killed one deer in that time that was a 7 pt 2 yr old. All the rest were spikes and fork horns. It would not have matter how many deer I passed. If I passed every buck I saw - it would not have mattered how many I passed (which would have been a buck or two a year) - nobody else was passing them. I had never heard of someone passing a deer in the 80’s. Nobody I knew owned recreational/hunting land. Leasing had not caught on. We hunted commercial timberland.

Mid 90’s, our state passed a 3 pt on one side reg. Many folks griped and complained and said they would never be able to kill a buck again. It took about five years to see a difference. At the same time, all the commercial timberland was leased. It was the perfect storm. Folks were made to pass deer. The more they passed, the bigger the deer got, and hunters saw the benefit and started passing more deer. The more they passed, the more they passed. All the leased land gave these hunters skin in the game. Before, when it was open land, if you passed a deer, there was a good chance it went over the hill and was killed. Now hunters saw they could pass a deer and it might not get killed, because the deer was living on leased ground with like minded hunters in the lease

In addition, hunting shows were becoming popular. Passing deer, growing big deer, planting food plots, supplemental feed. All this hit at the same time and it took off. I dont give a 3 yr old 110” deer a second look - and I would have mounted it 30 years ago.

CWD has hit, 3 pt rule erased, and many hunters have reverted to hunting like it were the 1980’s.
 

bueller

Moderator
Hard to describe my "mental dynamic" right now. I've seen two fawns in roughly 40 hours of rifle season. Bow season wasn't much better but I did pass a young 8 pointer. Not because I think he will survive and grow but because I wanted to use my tag on an older/bigger buck. That's been the only buck I've seen this year.
 

yoderjac

5 year old buck +
I think you are completely wrong on providing info for hunting My friend killed 2 mature bucks after getting cell pics and moving stands within minutes of getting a picture. I have also shot a deer this year I got a picture of him doing what I assume was going back to bed. I happened to be walking to the stand when I got the pic due to the delay but the confidence went up. Sure enough the deer came out of his bed and came past the stand I was in.


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There are lots of anecdotal examples. There is no doubt it can happen on occasion, but I really don't think using scouting cameras is any more effective than many of the other hunting techniques we use. When you look a the raw data, I wonder if you could see any difference in the percentage of deer population killed per hunter-hour before scouting cameras and today when they are ubiquitous. I really doubt it.

That is not to say that some hunter some place has killed mature deer due to a game cam that he otherwise would not have killed. And of course, we don't know how often someone makes a decision based on game camera info and modifies his stand selection as a result and loses an opportunity at a mature buck because of the change.

Maybe there is some location related aspect to this, but I just don't see them as an effective strategy for shooting mature deer here.
 

Angus 1895

5 year old buck +
I listen to CNBC a lot.

last week I heard an investment analyst state:

A wise man told me the key to happiness…..

U wanna be happy?

Lower your expectations.

I would truly dread hunting ………depending on what my cell phone showed me.
 

SwampCat

5 year old buck +
There are lots of anecdotal examples. There is no doubt it can happen on occasion, but I really don't think using scouting cameras is any more effective than many of the other hunting techniques we use. When you look a the raw data, I wonder if you could see any difference in the percentage of deer population killed per hunter-hour before scouting cameras and today when they are ubiquitous. I really doubt it.

That is not to say that some hunter some place has killed mature deer due to a game cam that he otherwise would not have killed. And of course, we don't know how often someone makes a decision based on game camera info and modifies his stand selection as a result and loses an opportunity at a mature buck because of the change.

Maybe there is some location related aspect to this, but I just don't see them as an effective strategy for shooting mature deer here.
Everyone I personally know who uses game cameras would disagree - including me. Most of our big deer, we are lucky to visually see one time a year. The deer in the picture I included above I have never seen in two years, until I purposefully went to see him because he was on a texting camera - and I live on my property. Season is open and I could have killed him at 60 yards if I had desired. The biggest deer I have ever killed, I hunted him one time. I knew when he was most likely coming, and which direction he was coming from. I knew there would most likely be another couple decent bucks in front of him. I had three cameras in five acres - something you would not be likely to do with your camera setup. I have killed 100’s of hogs strictly as a result of a texting camera - and I could be successful hunting deer the same way - I just dont do it. I have purposely stayed out of a stand when I get a pic of a deer I dont want to bump and I am on my way to that stand location. I might move cameras thirty or forty feet and leave them for three days and move them again. Your system probably is not easily moved. I have even used cameras to find areas where deer dont frequent - and use that area for stand ingress and egress - something you would probably not waste a camera on. I will often wait until a buck gets regular to hunt that area - to avoid spooking him if he is only intermittent. Lots of areas where game cameras shine - including small resolution text pictures - in an aide to improve chance of harvest. They are particularly helpful when targeting a specific deer, bear, or hog.
 

SwampCat

5 year old buck +
I run game cameras, including some texting cameras, year round and probably get more enjoyment from them than from hunting. I kill fewer deer because of the cameras, because I am typically hunting a very specific deer and pass deer I would shoot if I didnt know a larger deer was in the area. I have killed hundreds of hogs using texting cameras. I use my cameras to select likely areas for spring time predator control trapping. Over half my cell cams I have set to not instantly text pictures - usually twice a day - unless they are used primarily for hog hunting. I even use texting cameras directed at a trap location so I know if I need to dispatch an animal or check on the set.
 

Bill

Administrator
I’ve only ever killed 1 buck based solely on RF camera’s. Never saw the deer before. He showed up on camera in the AM closely following a doe during the rut. It was obvious he was with her, not chasing her. I killed him that afternoon still with that doe.

But I don’t do as others have pointed out. My cams are 24/7/365 in the same spot. I use them to know what an area might offer. If I moved them to hone in on one and added more to the area for that it might help me shoot a Target buck. Hmmm?

Nah. To much work.
 

yoderjac

5 year old buck +
I’ve only ever killed 1 buck based solely on RF camera’s. Never saw the deer before. He showed up on camera in the AM closely following a doe during the rut. It was obvious he was with her, not chasing her. I killed him that afternoon still with that doe.

But I don’t do as others have pointed out. My cams are 24/7/365 in the same spot. I use them to know what an area might offer. If I moved them to hone in on one and added more to the area for that it might help me shoot a Target buck. Hmmm?

Nah. To much work.
And I find them great for drawing that target buck line for each particular location. With wireless cams running 24/7/365, one can develop an inventory of sorts of buck classes that use your property. If you establish a maturity level for buck harvest that is too low, you end up killing bucks when younger that could be killed in future years at a greater maturity level. On the other hand, if you draw that level too high, you can hunt the property for 20 years and never shoot a buck.

I like the idea of 90%/10% for experienced hunters. Targeting the top 10% of age class is a good balance between recreation and allowing bucks to mature. Game cams running 24/7/365 can help you determine where to draw the 10% line.

Thanks,

Jack
 

sandbur

5 year old buck +
If it is legal, and you are happy with a deer, shoot it.

That being said, my PERSONAL opinion, for MY own values, are that using a cell cam to harvest a specific buck on that day is not something I want to do. Maybe if I had a cell cam my opinion would be different.

But once again, if it is legal and you want to do it, go ahead. I should not impose my hunting standards on others.


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Booner21

5 year old buck +
I’ve only ever killed 1 buck based solely on RF camera’s. Never saw the deer before. He showed up on camera in the AM closely following a doe during the rut. It was obvious he was with her, not chasing her. I killed him that afternoon still with that doe.

But I don’t do as others have pointed out. My cams are 24/7/365 in the same spot. I use them to know what an area might offer. If I moved them to hone in on one and added more to the area for that it might help me shoot a Target buck. Hmmm?

Nah. To much work.

I haven’t killed one solely because of wireless cams but have recent info on when a deer that I want to target is a on the property or be moving in daylight. This Definitely offers an advantage. At the very least I use them to choose stands based on wind direction if I am targeting a specific deer.

I am fortunate to have several different pieces to hunt somewhere around 10. I used to would pull a card only to find out a deer I was after was through there 3 days in a row the week before which by the time I found that out would be gone. Now I know same day. I am talking wireless technology in general not specifically cell cam. I am pretty positive that the folks using them would agree that it offers an advantage over not having them.


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yoderjac

5 year old buck +
I haven’t killed one solely because of wireless cams but have recent info on when a deer that I want to target is a on the property or be moving in daylight. This Definitely offers an advantage. At the very least I use them to choose stands based on wind direction if I am targeting a specific deer.

I am fortunate to have several different pieces to hunt somewhere around 10. I used to would pull a card only to find out a deer I was after was through there 3 days in a row the week before which by the time I found that out would be gone. Now I know same day. I am talking wireless technology in general not specifically cell cam. I am pretty positive that the folks using them would agree that it offers an advantage over not having them.


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I've been using it for 10 years. As I said in an earlier post, it has had zero impact on the ability to kill mature bucks here. It has some value in selecting stands for taking out kids. There is no advantage there over SD cards except for the convenience. Perhaps it is the way I use it, but there is no way I could take advantage of near-realtime information.

With my setup, pics don't come to my phone, but a non-internet connected computer at camp. I just can't think of how I would possibly use near-realtime information. I get the info immediately in camp (within a couple minutes). What am I going to do, sit at camp and not hunt waiting for a picture? Then somehow get into the vicinity of the buck and shoot it? I couldn't even do this with a doe. If I did get the pics on my cell phone, what would I do? Sit in a stand watching my cell phone and move to a different stand if I got a pic? In reality, that kind of hunting would significantly reduce my chances of harvesting a mature buck. At least it would here. Maybe different places would be different.

I can see where non-realtime information we get from game cams (wireless or not) could be helpful for determining how deer relate to your property in general. I can see where, for a novice hunter, that could help with the general area on the property to place a stand. I spend enough time on my place, both working on habitat and hunting, that I already know how deer relate to my place the old fashion way, observation and sign. Game cam pics are just one more, easy-to-interpret, form of deer sign to me.

If I tried to modify my hunting based on near-realtime information from a wireless camera, I would significantly reduce my chances of harvesting a mature buck.

Thanks,

Jack
 

SwampCat

5 year old buck +
I have never killed a deer using a cell cam when I get an instant text and go shoot it. I could have done that, but I have not. I have done that hundreds, maybe thousands of times, to kill hogs and coons. I use a lot of non cell cams through the year. I will use the cell cams for when I have located a target buck and I will then use the cell cams when I have identified the specific area I want to hunt. Say a non cell cam on a feed location is regularly picking up a buck, but usually at night. I might put a couple cell cams a couple hundred yards away, to try to pick him up in the daytime, where I can set up before he gets to feed - whether bait or food plot. And the cell cams let me monitor his movements, without physically getting in the area.

But, cell cams are not the end all. My son took a buck two weeks ago we have been hunting for three years. My biggest buck, I specifically hunted that year one evening and killed it. I waited until everything was right. But we had been hunting him for two years prior - that was just the first time we had patterned him.
 

yoderjac

5 year old buck +
I have never killed a deer using a cell cam when I get an instant text and go shoot it. I could have done that, but I have not. I have done that hundreds, maybe thousands of times, to kill hogs and coons. I use a lot of non cell cams through the year. I will use the cell cams for when I have located a target buck and I will then use the cell cams when I have identified the specific area I want to hunt. Say a non cell cam on a feed location is regularly picking up a buck, but usually at night. I might put a couple cell cams a couple hundred yards away, to try to pick him up in the daytime, where I can set up before he gets to feed - whether bait or food plot. And the cell cams let me monitor his movements, without physically getting in the area.

But, cell cams are not the end all. My son took a buck two weeks ago we have been hunting for three years. My biggest buck, I specifically hunted that year one evening and killed it. I waited until everything was right. But we had been hunting him for two years prior - that was just the first time we had patterned him.
Perhaps some of the difference has to do with location (vegetation and terrain). In my environment, you simply don't get many long-shot opportunities at a mature buck. Over 95% are under 100 yards. I did have one 150 yard shot one time when a mature deer just happened to step into a long shooting lane. I just can't imagine getting a near-realtime pic and sneaking that close to a mature buck and shoot it.

Another difference may be the fact that we are always doing habitat management. In additional to season changes, there is little consistency in how mature bucks relate to our property. Non-realtime information may help in patterning in places where deer are more predictable. Each time we have a timber operation, controlled burn, or other large scale change, we have to relearn how deer use our land in general, especially mature bucks.
 
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