Make Your Moves For Midwest Whitetails
Posted by Chris Parrish on October 25th, 2022
As many know whitetails can be a fickle animal, ever-changing as the season progresses. After 45 years of hunting these awesome creatures I have learned that staying mobile is a big key to constant success on mature bucks.
While many of my bucks have come from public land, which requires a good bit of adapting to these changes, private land can have the same challenges.
In the earlier season, the key is bed to feed and feed to bed. Keep up with the key food sources. Acorns are big factor this time of year. Look for white oaks and other oaks dropping close to bedding areas. Key in on the down wind sides of these areas. Stay portable and move with active feeding. Of course, beans that have not defoliated are great as well and can be a great source to key in on. Trails leading in and out to this food source can be killer this time of year. Note that deer will be bedded close to these food sources, so making sure entry and exit to your stand with minimal disturbance is a must.
As the season progresses, food is key for does but bucks are traveling and looking for the first does to come into estrous. Funnels leading from thick bedding cover to the food sources and doe group bedding areas are the primary target. In MO and much of the Midwest this occurs around the last week in October. This time of year, no matter the hour, this strategy can be very effective. Security cover leading to and from key doe group bedding areas and food sources are poison.
Once does begin coming in, it can be a guessing game. However, bucks still travel funnel areas leading to and from these bedding and food sources does are frequently using. Being mobile and moving setups as sign, pictures and sightings happen is crucial. Always keep a set or your saddle handy for quick moves this time of year.
Bucks during peak breeding will much of the time push does into low pressure areas where other bucks do not pose and issue. Moving into these areas at the right time can spell success, be mobile and make your move when buck sightings start to slow as this is when they are sequestering with does.
In a nut shell being mobile and adapting to the changes is the best bet to putting a good mature buck on the ground consistently.