|Author with a Buck harvested at 11am a couple days |
after Halloween. Stand was located in a transition area
used by does. The Buck was rattled in to 20 yards.
This Halloween I will be setting all day in a transition area used by does. This area will include heavy cover on the edge of a food source. In my case, hunting public land in northern Michigan, I will be no more than 300 yards from acorns. This area would also be a travel route used by does to get from feed to bed. Spots like this are often littered with scrapes and rubs due to bucks roaming the thick cover in hopes of cutting the track of a hot doe.
With the wind in my face and travel routes used by does, in seeing distance, I can expect bucks to be cruising the area. This type of area is frequented by bucks that are keeping tabs on the does. The does will not be ready to breed for at least a week or two but this will not stop bucks from roaming the area, stopping only to make a scrape or rub a tree. I already have one of these spots in mind and you had better find one as well.
Bucks will also be very curious of other bucks in the area.
It’s likely of them to be sizing up the competition in the area this time of
year. It would be wise to pack some tarsal gland scent and a grunt call. A
cruising buck will stop for little but a quick whiff of what he believes to be
another buck in his territory could turn his wheels and have him marching
towards your post.
Grunt calls are great for getting the attention of a buck. Like I previously stated, bucks are curious of their potential competition. Being vocal could get bucks off their path and in front of your sights. This includes rattling. Although not as aggressive as a buck fending off competition while tending a hot doe, a semi intense sparring sequence could gain the attention of bucks nearby. It’s like when a fight would break out in school. If you could hear the yelling and chanting, it was almost impossible not to go over and investigate.
With this information in mind, get looking at some topo and satellite photos. Find a spot where you suspect bucks will be trying to intercept does. Pinch points leading to a food source are great areas to start. If you’ve already came across some rub lines, it wouldn’t hurt to be within shooting distance of them as it’s a clear indication of a bucks travel route. The conditions will be ideal for an all-day sit. Although you may not actually see deer all day, you can be confidant that they could show up at any time. Best of luck and happy Halloween!