Stand selection critical for bowhunting success

Archery season is well underway and I’ve been ready for quite some time. I’ve scouted and placed several stands where I thought they would do the most good, but where to place a treestand is sometimes problematic for hunters. With a little homework, the task can prove to be far less daunting and more productive than just hanging a stand at a place that simply “looks good.”

Where I hang a stand or set a permanent stand I prefer to hunt on the farm I hunt depends on the availability of the food source deer might be utilizing prior to the season opener. Normally, the apple trees on the farm produce fruit annually and are usually deer magnets, but this year was an exception. A late spring frost killed off virtually all the apple buds that first appeared, and now all the apple trees on the property are barren of fruit. Scratch the apple stands.

This year a neighboring farmer has rented the land and has planted most of the farm fields with corn. Having corn all around isn’t necessarily a bad thing unless it remains eight feet tall and isn’t harvested until late October. Standing in a tree while large corn pickers rumble by can ruin a hunt in a hurry.

Hunting near the oak trees waiting for deer to scarf up the acorns is always a good choice, and almost by default this is where my hunting buddy Dave and I are currently set up. When the acorns hit the ground deer will abandon other food sources in order to fill up on the acorns. However, acorn production can prove to be iffy from year to year, so late last August Dave and I took time to glass the tops of some of the oak trees on the property to determine the density of the acorns. Most if not all the white oak trees were sold off for timber by the landowner a while back, so Dave and I are now left with the red oaks and the few acorns they produced. Granted, the acorns of the red oak are not as attractive to deer as those of the white oak, but they’re all we have.

After a reviewing the acorn crop Dave and I settled on two trees, one on the side of the property he hunts and one on the side I hunt. I like my side better since the oak trees are uphill just above me while a small pond is just below. Deer often come out of the lower woods and stop at the pond for a drink before heading past my stand to feed on any of the acorns dropped by the oaks. Beyond the oak trees the corn fields still prove attractive and they remain a destination for any deer leaving the cover of the lower woods.

So far, only a small four-point and a doe with two fawns have shown themselves, but my trail cam photos prove more than one good buck calls the area home. I have what I feel is a good location; now if I can only get lucky.

Categories: Bloggers on Hunting, Hunting News, New York – Mike Raykovicz, Whitetail Deer

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