A deer in the field

“Hunt Pines and the Lulls for Deer” Day 3:...

A deer in the field

“Hunt Pines and the Lulls for Deer” Day 5:...

Comments Off on “Hunt Pines and the Lulls for Deer” Day 4: Hunt Rutting Deer at Young Pine Plantations Deer Hunting, Hunting Advice

“Hunt Pines and the Lulls for Deer” Day 4: Hunt Rutting Deer at Young Pine Plantations

A hunter scouts out the area
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Editor’s Note: Many hunters consider pine plantations biological deserts where nothing exists except pine trees and pine straw – or that’s what outdoorsmen have told other sportsmen for years. Honestly, I truly hope you believe that, because the majority of hunters who accept that idea will stay out of some of the best big-buck territory in the nation, leaving the prime hunting spots for those who know how to hunt the pines. Pine plantations generally home some of the most-productive places I know to take big deer for three reasons. Pine plantations provide food and browse for the deer to feed on, cover they can hide in and a barrier most hunters won’t penetrate to search for deer. Deer hold in pine plantations from the first year after the planting of the pines until the last year when foresters cut the mature trees, generally a timeline of about 30 years. Let’s look at some secrets for hunting a pine plantation.

A deer in the fieldLongtime, avid deer hunter and guide, Larry Norton of Butler, Alabama, recommends that when you’re hunting during the rut in a young pine plantation, you need to put your tree stand as high as you feel comfortable on the edge of a clear-cut. “Bucks like to chase does out into clear-cuts because their chances of running them down and catching up to them are much better in clear-cuts than in a mature forest. Most of us when we see a buck chasing a doe 500-600 yards from us start watching the buck and looking for a place to get a shot at him, instead of watching the doe. But I’ve learned that if a the doe is 5 or 10 minutes out in front of the buck in a pine plantation, I need to watch that doe to learn where she’s going. If I spot a doe going across the end of a ridge, a hollow, a firebreak or a road relatively close to me, I’ll quickly and carefully climb out of my tree stand and move to the place where the doe has crossed. I get ready because I know that buck will be coming along shortly on the trail the doe’s left. I’ve taken several nice bucks with this technique.”

A hunter checks out a deer standNorton also mentions that if you’re hunting a young pine plantation during the rut, grunting and rattling will pay off for you. “Grunting for deer and using a run-and-gun tactic like I do when I hunt turkeys is deadly effective for taking rutting bucks in the pines. During the rut, I want the wind in my face, and I either will climb in a tree stand or sit in a ground blind and grunt for a full minute or two without stopping. I’ll point the barrel of my grunt call in several different directions and move it around to sound like a buck that’s grunting and chasing a doe all around my stand. If I don’t see a deer within 10 minutes, I’ll move about 50 yards and repeat the same grunting sequence. A hunter with his downed deerThese actions help me sound like a buck that’s chasing a doe, then loses her and later catches back up to her at about 50-yards away. I’ve grunted in quite a few bucks with this strategy. A buck that’s chasing a doe grunts continuously. Often you won’t see spot the buck instantly when you start grunting. That’s why I stay on my stand for about 10 minutes before I start grunting again when I’m hunting in a pine plantation during the rut.”

You’ll enjoy hunting pine plantations and find them highly productive, if you’re willing to learn how to hunt them. Much more feeding, breeding, sparring and moving takes place inside pine plantations than most hunters realize. If you learn to hunt the pines, often you’ll have your own hunting honey hole where you can hunt undisturbed by other hunters and see and take older-age-class bucks that other hunters never spot.

Cover: Whitetail Deer and the Hunters Who Take Big BucksTo learn more about hunting deer, check out John E. Phillips’ book, “Whitetail Deer and the Hunters Who Take Big Bucks,” available in Kindle, print and Audible at http://amzn.to/2bYwYOK. You may have to copy and paste this link into your browser. (When you click on this book, notice on the left where Amazon says you can read 10% of this book for free and hear 10% for free). On the right side of the page and below the offer for a free Audible trial, you can click on Buy the Audible book. To see more of John’s deer-hunting books, visit http://www.amazon.com/author/johnephillips. Cover: The Recipes You Can't Live WithoutJohn and Denise Phillips’ new book, “The Recipes You Can’t Live Without,” that’s full of delicious, time-tested recipes for cooking wild game and fish and also ideas for breakfasts at your hunting club just was published in print this past week. Go to https://www.amazon.com/dp/B09MYTMSMH?ref_=pe_3052080_397514860 to learn more.

Tomorrow: Hunt the Lulls for Deer

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