John's Journal...

Twelve Ways to Find Your Buck Deer to Hunt

Day 1: Discovering Ways to Find Your Buck

Editor’s Note: Tagging a deer is easy. All you have to do is get a deer in your sights, squeeze the trigger, and let your bullet do the rest. But finding a white-tailed deer can be difficult. Thousands of outdoorsmen spend days attempting to take a deer in areas the animals rarely frequent. Many hunters sit in tree stands or ground blinds day after day waiting for a deer to appear, because they have seen a few tracks or droppings. Some hunters set up their ambushes close to trees where a buck has rubbed his antlers. Although these outdoorsmen are hunting over deer sign, there is no guarantee that the hunters are in a good place to take a deer.

Click for Larger ViewClick for Larger ViewEffective hunters locate bucks in many-different ways, because they know that four driving forces – food, water, fear and sex – motivate deer and determine their behavior. These outdoorsmen also understand that whitetails are creatures of habit and use the same trails and perform the same routines day in and day out, except when changes in the weather, the food supply, the intrusion of hunters or something else disrupts their set routines. These hunters are also aware of the deer’s acute senses – good hearing, a keen sense of smell and sharp eyes that can detect the slightest movement.

Here are two routes that you can follow to have venison this season.

* Determine which of the buck’s major needs is in the shortest supply. Then set up an ambush close to the location of that essential. “One of the ways to find deer concentrated in a particular area is to locate a place where food, water or ready does are available, and where the demand is intense,” Dr. Ross Shelton, former extension wildlife specialist with the Mississippi Cooperative Extension Service, says. “If there is a drought, the deer will be traveling to water. If there is a shortage of food, they will concentrate where food is still to be found. During the rut, you will locate bucks in places where they are most likely to meet does.”

Click for Larger ViewClick for Larger View* Contact the wildlife biologist, conservation officer and landowners where you hunt to determine the preferred terrain and food and the deer’s greatest current need. Terrain and cover vary, and the route to successful deer hunting changes, too. For this reason, the best information to be had in a particular region where you hunt will come from that state’s deer specialists. The landowner usually knows the land, the deer and their habits and can tell you where he has seen the most deer. The county’s conservation officer sees deer almost every day and will be able to advise you about the best places to find your deer.

For more deer-hunting tips, get John E. Phillips’ Kindle eBooks “How to Hunt Deer Like a Pro,” "How to Hunt Deer Up Close: With Bows, Rifles, Muzzleloaders and Crossbows,” and “PhD Whitetails: How to Hunt and Take the Smartest Deer on Any Property,” or to prepare venison, get “Deer & Fixings.” Click here on each, or go to, type in the name of the book, and download it to your Kindle, and/or download a Kindle app for your iPad, SmartPhone or computer.

About the Author

John Phillips, winner of the 2012 Homer Circle Fishing Award for outstanding fishing writer by the American Sportfishing Association (ASA) and the Professional Outdoor Media Association (POMA), the 2008 Crossbow Communicator of the year and the 2007 Legendary Communicator chosen for induction into the National Fresh Water Hall of Fame, is a freelance writer (over 6,000 magazine articles for about 100 magazines and several thousand newspaper columns published), magazine editor, photographer for print media as well as industry catalogues (over 25,000 photos published), lecturer, outdoor consultant, marketing consultant, book author and daily internet content provider with an overview of the outdoors. Click here for more information and a list of all the books available from John E. Phillips.

Tomorrow: Tips for Locating Deer to Hunt

Check back each day this week for more about "Twelve Ways to Find Your Buck Deer to Hunt"

Day 1: Discovering Ways to Find Your Buck
Day 2: Tips for Locating Deer to Hunt
Day 3: More Techniques to Pinpoint Deer to Hunt
Day 4: Hunt a Preferred Food Source and Make a Drive to Find More Deer to Take
Day 5: More Routes You Can Follow to Locate Deer and Take Them

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Entry 742, Day 1