If you’ve paid any attention over the past couple of weeks you’ve seen our GrowingDeer.tv episodes, tweets and Facebook posts have consisted mostly of bucks that have been found dead on The Proving Grounds due to the outbreak of EHD late last summer. Now if you’re anything like me you might be getting sick of talking about deer that you’ll never be able to hunt. So today we’re changing things up and thinking “happy thoughts.”
There are still a few nice bucks running around here, one that you’ve probably heard us talk about before is a 6.5 year old or older buck named Split Brow. Another great buck that showed up on Boomerang Ridge this year is Two Face. Both of these bucks were still holding their antlers in early February when we ran our cameras, but it’s that time of year when they can fall off at any moment, so we’re taking any spare moments we get to do a little shed hunting!
One of the great things about shed hunting, besides finding those treasured antlers, is finding the trails, scrapes, rubs, and all the other sign that you didn’t know existed because they were in areas you didn’t want to intrude on during hunting season. That’s the great thing about walking your property during January and February, all the deer sign that was left during hunting season is still present. This means you might be able to find those trails that the mature bucks were using to sneak through your property unseen. With this in mind, anyone who’s ever shed hunted with me knows I’m terrible at it! I have to almost step on the antlers to find them. The biggest reason why I’m so bad at shed hunting is the deer sign I mentioned. When I’m walking through the woods and find a very active deer trail, then maybe a large rub on a tree, followed by a scrape, I’ve stopped focusing on finding sheds and I’ve already started looking for a tree to hang a treestand in.
While collecting soil samples and shed hunting last week, if I noticed a large deer trail coming into a food plot, I would take a short recon mission and see what I could learn. As the week came to a close I had found nine new locations to hang Muddy stands in. Nine new stands in places we didn’t hunt at all last year, plus they’re loaded with deer sign! Needless to say we are only a few weeks into February and I’m already excited about the upcoming season!
It’s a great time of year for shed hunting but don’t forget to keep those eyes peeled for possible hunting locations. You could be missing out on that secret spot where your Hit List bucks hide!