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26 hunts, seen 3 deer #3848582
01/29/23 07:19 PM
01/29/23 07:19 PM
Joined: Nov 2022
Posts: 44
Pensacola
R
redcoat Offline OP
spike
redcoat  Offline OP
spike
R
Joined: Nov 2022
Posts: 44
Pensacola
No bucks. I would like to see one or maybe even get a shot at killing one. Besides corn or some other illegal tactic on public land, what is your go to set up to get a shot during the rut?

I hunted friday afternoon, all day saturday. Friday I sat in an area where I've been monitoring some bucks on camera. Only recently during daylight hours. But can't seem to be there when they come out. i've hunted that spot 4 times now. I have found a ton of sign there. although not much of it as fresh as it once was. still, i went out there wednesday to scout and one of those scrapes had fresh marks. My trail cam told me another scrape had a 8 point show up 1030 that morning. I hunted about 100 yards away from that scrape with the other one in gun range as well. Wind was in my face. saw nothing except a armadilo who made all kinds of noise coming out. got my heart beat up me thinking THIS IS IT!! but nope

Saturday I hunted a pine thicket (about 5 years old) to creek bottom transition. I was watching the thicket. At 930 a doe appeared at about 20 yards away. It was a buck only gun hunt day so I let her walk. the wind shifted and I had to move for the afternoon.

the afternoon hunt, i hunted a 1 year old clear cut. It has alot of new growth. I positioned myself with the wind in my face looking out into the clear cut. It was a transition line from hardwoods to clearcut. On my way in, I found several scrapes, and large piles of fresh droppings. I felt like i should have hunted there, but I wouldn't be able to see a large area of the clear cut had i done that. Pretty much everything would have been in bow range. I've heard cruising bucks will walk the edge of those cuts looking for doe trails. IDK if I made the right call or not, but i didnt see anything either way.

I take free advice

Re: 26 hunts, seen 3 deer [Re: redcoat] #3848593
01/29/23 07:30 PM
01/29/23 07:30 PM
Joined: May 2018
Posts: 3,252
Hoover,Al. StateChamps
B
Big Bore Offline
10 point
Big Bore  Offline
10 point
B
Joined: May 2018
Posts: 3,252
Hoover,Al. StateChamps
Are you saying you have hunted 26 times and have only seen 3 deer? Just wanted to make sure I am reading that right. If that is true, sounds like hunting in Shelby county in the early 80’s!


Hunting brings out the worst in people.
Re: 26 hunts, seen 3 deer [Re: redcoat] #3848595
01/29/23 07:33 PM
01/29/23 07:33 PM
Joined: Mar 2015
Posts: 4,495
george county ms
johndeere5036 Offline
10 point
johndeere5036  Offline
10 point
Joined: Mar 2015
Posts: 4,495
george county ms


Man it seems like you’re doing the right things and putting in the time. A lot of luck has to go into to it as well. My opinion this time of the year I’d be focusing on where the does were. If you’re hunting buck sign and they are out chasing they may never come back to that scrape again. I’ve never hunted public land so I might be wrong but this time of year I normally focus on the does

Re: 26 hunts, seen 3 deer [Re: Big Bore] #3848609
01/29/23 07:42 PM
01/29/23 07:42 PM
Joined: Nov 2022
Posts: 44
Pensacola
R
redcoat Offline OP
spike
redcoat  Offline OP
spike
R
Joined: Nov 2022
Posts: 44
Pensacola
Originally Posted by Big Bore
Are you saying you have hunted 26 times and have only seen 3 deer? Just wanted to make sure I am reading that right. If that is true, sounds like hunting in Shelby county in the early 80’s!

Yes,

Most of those hunts were evening hunts. I'd get off work and drive 30 minutes to get into the stand by 2 or 3 sit til dark.

Getting in before dawn on day hunts, I don't know if Im spooking deer with my red light or what. but I can't tell where im going without it.

Sometimes i'd scout and hunt same time. Just walk til i found sign and set up on it.

Re: 26 hunts, seen 3 deer [Re: johndeere5036] #3848612
01/29/23 07:48 PM
01/29/23 07:48 PM
Joined: Nov 2022
Posts: 44
Pensacola
R
redcoat Offline OP
spike
redcoat  Offline OP
spike
R
Joined: Nov 2022
Posts: 44
Pensacola
Originally Posted by johndeere5036


Man it seems like you’re doing the right things and putting in the time. A lot of luck has to go into to it as well. My opinion this time of the year I’d be focusing on where the does were. If you’re hunting buck sign and they are out chasing they may never come back to that scrape again. I’ve never hunted public land so I might be wrong but this time of year I normally focus on the does


I appreciate your advice. That doe i saw saturday was the first id seen since mid november. I killed one with the bow then. my first year hunting public. I saw a doe my second hunt this year back in october and I was like "public is the way to go". I couldn't get a shot on her but still excited to see one that close. she was about 7 yards away. came in behind me and i couldn't get turned around.

I'm a new hunter really. didn't start at all til i was 42. Went to my neighbors land twice and killed a doe.

All that to say, im not positive where to find the does either. reckon i'll just hunt the two or 3 spots i have seen them.

The cameras are a double edged sword. they keep me hunting the same areas, i know the deer are there. but for whatever reason they don't come out when im around.

Ive gotten better on my approaches with scent control, silencing my gear and what not. But not seeing the success i think i should.

being in the woods is cool and all. but after 100 hours staring at the woods. I want to see a deer every so often

Re: 26 hunts, seen 3 deer [Re: redcoat] #3848615
01/29/23 07:51 PM
01/29/23 07:51 PM
Joined: Oct 2022
Posts: 1,411
NOALA
RidgeRanger Offline
8 point
RidgeRanger  Offline
8 point
Joined: Oct 2022
Posts: 1,411
NOALA
Hunting public land is a challenge, for sure. There’s a reason people pay big money for leases. According to this report 95% of the deer in Alabama are taken on private land.


Outdoor Life article


Last edited by RidgeRanger; 01/29/23 07:52 PM.
Re: 26 hunts, seen 3 deer [Re: redcoat] #3848667
01/29/23 08:34 PM
01/29/23 08:34 PM
Joined: Sep 2012
Posts: 14,284
ArmPit of the south
D
DeerNutz0U812_ Offline
Booner
DeerNutz0U812_  Offline
Booner
D
Joined: Sep 2012
Posts: 14,284
ArmPit of the south
One thing is for sure, your not spooking them with that red light, Ive walked right up on them several times within a few feet of em with my red light on shining them right in the face and they cant see it...Ive also shined them out of my stand after dark while getting down to see what they are....That red light dont bother them at all....Other than that I would suggest a whole different place to hunt...Good luck


Did you know that Beer Nutz are over a Dollar...and Deer Nutz are under a Buck...


Re: 26 hunts, seen 3 deer [Re: redcoat] #3848684
01/29/23 08:42 PM
01/29/23 08:42 PM
Joined: May 2018
Posts: 3,252
Hoover,Al. StateChamps
B
Big Bore Offline
10 point
Big Bore  Offline
10 point
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Joined: May 2018
Posts: 3,252
Hoover,Al. StateChamps
Man that’s tough. I would go somewhere else to hunt. At the rate you are going, it would be easy to get discouraged.


Hunting brings out the worst in people.
Re: 26 hunts, seen 3 deer [Re: redcoat] #3848688
01/29/23 08:46 PM
01/29/23 08:46 PM
Joined: Feb 2011
Posts: 4,801
LASW
turkey247 Offline
12 point
turkey247  Offline
12 point
Joined: Feb 2011
Posts: 4,801
LASW
There’s plenty of places in AL where the deer population is just not good. Some folks don’t understand that, it’s just the truth. Add a little hunting pressure, and it gets tough.

Re: 26 hunts, seen 3 deer [Re: redcoat] #3848695
01/29/23 08:51 PM
01/29/23 08:51 PM
Joined: Jun 2020
Posts: 10,909
Earth
TDog93 Offline
Booner
TDog93  Offline
Booner
Joined: Jun 2020
Posts: 10,909
Earth
New ground

not seeing any can take the starch out of u - hang in there - sounds like they been around some on your cam


Hunt the wind - leave it better than you found it - love your neighbor as you love your self
We need prayer for our country now more than ever
Re: 26 hunts, seen 3 deer [Re: redcoat] #3848696
01/29/23 08:53 PM
01/29/23 08:53 PM
Joined: Jan 2008
Posts: 3,344
Demop
1bamashooter Offline
10 point
1bamashooter  Offline
10 point
Joined: Jan 2008
Posts: 3,344
Demop
Sounds like you need to find better public land to hunt. You might have to camp or get a hotel room but there is plenty of land to hunt in Alabama where you can see deer.


Keep your booger hooker off the bang switch.
Re: 26 hunts, seen 3 deer [Re: redcoat] #3848698
01/29/23 08:54 PM
01/29/23 08:54 PM
Joined: Oct 2017
Posts: 1,133
Georgia
H
howl Offline
6 point
howl  Offline
6 point
H
Joined: Oct 2017
Posts: 1,133
Georgia
When I hunt public land I like to look like a disco going in in the morning. No joke I have one of those blinking red lights joggers wear and a headlamp going. People lose their minds when they think there's a deer.

Running cameras lays down your scent, which makes deer change time and place. Older bucks notice cameras. If you'd be happy with any buck you don't need a picture of it anyhow.

You can find a ton of heavy, fresh sign in places deer will never be when the sun is up.

Re: buck hunting, there are times when you're maneuvering at bow hunting range even though you have a rifle. It doesn't help to be able to see a large area because you won't see the deer unless you are on top of it. When they're wide open chasing, yeah you can benefit from being able to see a long way. Most other time you need to be on the x in the thick to see them in daylight.

"Desperate times call for desperate measures." Grab some buckshot and go root one out of bed. Back when I hunted only public that's how I topped off the freezer at the end of season; mid-day during the week when I was the only one out there. A windy day and an overgrown clearcut or short pines means meat.

If you don't have a handle on where they bed you're going to have to figure that out to consistently be on them in daylight hours.

Re: 26 hunts, seen 3 deer [Re: redcoat] #3848700
01/29/23 08:58 PM
01/29/23 08:58 PM
Joined: Dec 2009
Posts: 9,002
Colbert County
T
Teacher One Offline
14 point
Teacher One  Offline
14 point
T
Joined: Dec 2009
Posts: 9,002
Colbert County
Hunting public land is like the old real estate adage-"location, location, location!"

I have a place where I have quit hunting for the year because I don't want to kill a deer there. We have several really nice bucks there and they need another year to become great bucks. I haven't been a time this year and not laid eyes on a deer. If I was you, I would start looking around close to find something to hunt. Better yet, if your finances will allow, buy a small tract and start from there. The best investments I have ever made were in land ownership. Public land is good in some spots and terrible in others. North Alabama has some great areas of public land that produce great deer harvests each year.

B


I can't stand a thief.
Re: 26 hunts, seen 3 deer [Re: redcoat] #3848713
01/29/23 09:09 PM
01/29/23 09:09 PM
Joined: Mar 2020
Posts: 7,071
Free State of Winston
F
FreeStateHunter Offline
They Call Me Gator 🐊
FreeStateHunter  Offline
They Call Me Gator 🐊
F
Joined: Mar 2020
Posts: 7,071
Free State of Winston
For the rut if I’m on public I’m hunting pinch points and creek crossings. Bucks will be cruising so those area’s concentrate movement.

Last edited by FreeStateHunter; 01/29/23 09:09 PM.
Re: 26 hunts, seen 3 deer [Re: redcoat] #3848750
01/29/23 09:42 PM
01/29/23 09:42 PM
Joined: Jul 2013
Posts: 5,032
Gurley, Alabama
S
Standbanger Offline
12 point
Standbanger  Offline
12 point
S
Joined: Jul 2013
Posts: 5,032
Gurley, Alabama
The pressure on public makes the deer very nocturnal. The sign you are seeing is probably made at night. I have found places that were tore up with sign droppings, rubs, fresh tracks. I would see a spike or real young deer during hunting hours. Cameras are great if you are getting daytime pics of deer otherwise not much help. Scent control game has to be on point when hunting public.

Re: 26 hunts, seen 3 deer [Re: redcoat] #3848763
01/29/23 09:49 PM
01/29/23 09:49 PM
Joined: Aug 2014
Posts: 1,826
Sneads, Florida
fladeerhntr Offline
8 point
fladeerhntr  Offline
8 point
Joined: Aug 2014
Posts: 1,826
Sneads, Florida
Wish I had some advice to give you that would help you out. Your experience on public land sounds like how this year has been on the 3 different private lands that i hunt. This has been the worst deer season I've ever had with not even a buck on camera i would pick the rifle up for.

Re: 26 hunts, seen 3 deer [Re: redcoat] #3848781
01/29/23 10:00 PM
01/29/23 10:00 PM
Joined: Nov 2005
Posts: 8,372
Chelsea, AL
lefthorn Offline
14 point
lefthorn  Offline
14 point
Joined: Nov 2005
Posts: 8,372
Chelsea, AL
And when it is rut, I like to hunt where I can see a good distance. Bucks are on their feet moving around but mist of the times not really following any patterns. May be in a general area but using a different trail each time

Re: 26 hunts, seen 3 deer [Re: redcoat] #3848808
01/29/23 10:27 PM
01/29/23 10:27 PM
Joined: Jun 2013
Posts: 2,990
Columbia, SC
CeeHawk37 Offline
10 point
CeeHawk37  Offline
10 point
Joined: Jun 2013
Posts: 2,990
Columbia, SC
Public ground ain’t east hunting… BUT based on your post you are close to getting it done. Number one thing you need to realize is that the sign you are seeing is mostly done at night. A buck will occasionally run through there in the daylight but it will not be consistent. He will likely be scent checking scrapes during daylight down wind by a hundred yards or so. His nose is the best defense he has. He’s gonna stick tight to cover and use that nose to figure out which deer have been by that scrape. A hot doe will make her presence known by visiting that scrape line.

That said, if you’re hunting relatively close to an access point, the deer know this too. Dive in a bit further and you are likely to see more movement. If you are far off the beaten path then you need to find the terrain that will funnel deer as they travel. Bucks will make a ton of sign in a creek bottom at night but during the day, they are going to want to travel the higher ground because they can check out the activity below with their nose. Stick with it and adjust your setup slightly, you should be rewarded in doing so.

Re: 26 hunts, seen 3 deer [Re: Standbanger] #3848814
01/29/23 10:33 PM
01/29/23 10:33 PM
Joined: Dec 2013
Posts: 2,247
tuscaloosa
K
kkfish Offline
8 point
kkfish  Offline
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Joined: Dec 2013
Posts: 2,247
tuscaloosa
Originally Posted by Standbanger
The pressure on public makes the deer very nocturnal. The sign you are seeing is probably made at night. I have found places that were tore up with sign droppings, rubs, fresh tracks. I would see a spike or real young deer during hunting hours. Cameras are great if you are getting daytime pics of deer otherwise not much help. Scent control game has to be on point when hunting public.

Re: 26 hunts, seen 3 deer [Re: redcoat] #3848822
01/29/23 10:35 PM
01/29/23 10:35 PM
Joined: Nov 2005
Posts: 8,372
Chelsea, AL
lefthorn Offline
14 point
lefthorn  Offline
14 point
Joined: Nov 2005
Posts: 8,372
Chelsea, AL
All in all, it sounds like you are close. Just need some minor tweaks.

And for clarification, where I hunt that I can see a long ways is 75-100 yards in thicker stuff close to edges of REAL thick stuff

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