Using Science To Pick Which Stand To Hunt
Last week I shared the results of some recent research from the University of Georgia. Those researchers found deer opted to spend more time inside a 105 acre area where coyotes were excluded by a fence, compared to similar areas just outside the fence.
Clearly, deer preferred feeding, etc., in areas they believed to have less danger. Do deer consider hunters predators – and avoid areas they associate with hunters?
Researchers from Auburn University studied this and found deer, especially mature bucks, avoided hunting stands and feeding locations even when no hunter was present. The Auburn researchers monitored deer wearing GPS collars, noting changes in deer patterns between August through November on an active hunting property in South Carolina. The researchers found that mature bucks averaged traveling 55 yards further away from stands during the last day of the study compared to the first.
In addition, adult bucks were 80% less likely to use bait sites during daylight the last day of the study compared to the first.
It seems the best stand location is not only one that overlooks the best food, etc., in the area, but just (if not more) importantly a stand that deer don’t associate with hunters.
This research supports the old saying “The best time to hunt a stand is the first time it’s hunted!”
Growing and hunting deer together,
Dr. Grant Woods was raised and began his love of white-tailed deer as a bow hunter in the Ozark Mountains of Missouri.