John's Journal...


Click to enlargeLooking at Your Own Backyard

Editor’s Note: If you live in suburbia like I do, less than 15 minutes from metropolitan Birmingham, Alabama, and its more than 1/2-million folks, you'll often hear reports of big deer spotted within walking distance of your house. But everyone knows you can't hunt bucks downtown or in your own backyard, or can you? We often forget that white-tailed bucks travel. Although you may see them standing on asphalt or crashing across a creek, they must come and go from somewhere. Sometimes those backyard bucks have travel routes that will cross property you can hunt, if you'll research your options. Often Click to enlargeyou may find a trophy-buck hotspot less than 30 minutes from your home where no one else hunts or has permission to hunt.

"Dad, you're not going to believe what I just saw coming out of our sub development," my daughter told me. "I almost hit a huge buck out on the road. I've seen that deer there three or four times before." I knew my daughter could
recognize big deer and large antlers from her years of hunting. Some weeks later as my son fished a small stream from his canoe less than three blocks from my house, he spotted a nice 10-point buck that, "Jumped into Click to enlargethe creek and swam to the other bank. Dad, I looked at both banks and apparently that buck ran a regular trail there. We might be able to bow hunt him this fall."

If you want trophy-buck hunting close to home, you have two options -- raise them or research them. For a deer to become a trophy, he must have an abundance of nutritious food, survive long enough to put on heavy body weight and grow large antlers, Click to enlargeand come from a gene pool that produces trophy antlers. Wildlife researchers over the years have named age and food as the most critical ingredients for producing trophy bucks. If you own or lease 2,000 acres of property or more, you can control the habitat and the harvest of deer on that land. Over a period of years, you can grow bigger bucks with larger and heavier antlers. However, you'll find this process quite expensive. Let me tell you about a better way to locate and bag bigger deer.



Day 1: Looking at Your Own Backyard
Day 2: Paying the Price and Locating Trophy Buck Sanctuaries
Day 3: Getting Permission to Hunt Trophy Bucks By Finding the Landowner’s Hot Button
Day 4: Hunting Trophy Deer Near Parks and Kids’ Camps
Day 5: Become a Hunting Guide or Go To School


Entry 328, Day 1