Smart Deer? How smart are deer? A old friend of mine, Gene Failor, recently sent me a link to a forum post on huntingpa.com where the question was posed: Will a bedded deer bolt or hunker down and let an approaching hunter Walk on by?
Smart Deer? Respect, walk!
Take a lesson from Pantera. Respect the deer. They are much smarter than we realize. Are you talking to me?
Can’t you see I’m easily bothered by persistence?
Hunters get smug and like to think that they’ve got a certain buck “patterned” and know what his habits are and where he’ll appear next. “Well, run your mouth when I’m not around”, said the buck. If that’s what you think, you’ve got another thing coming. Once hunting season kicks in, deer that tolerated your presence will move on out. Deer have known from the dawn of time. They’ve been pattering us for millions of years.
Be yourself, by yourself
Whitetail guru Gene Wensel wrote about this in his legendary book, Bowhunting Rutting Whitetails. A mature buck is a completely different animal. He’s so geared down that he doesn’t get rattled. A mature buck will be gone before a hunter even makes up his mind to try and “slip through” a piece of cover. He knows you’re coming and he will casually get up and leave before the hunter enters his hide.
Walk on home, boy!
Sometimes deer sit tight. Really tight. There’s no doubt I’ve walked by countless deer in the woods completely aloof to the fact that the deer was laying mere feet away.
Stay away from me
My hunting buddies and I hunt the same 65 acre patch of south central PA mountain ridge year after year. It’s our lease and we pound it pretty hard. After about a week into the season those deer know we’re there. Oh, we still kill deer, but the truly big bucks that hang out on that property don’t tolerate our presence. No way, punk.
Can you hear the violins playing your song?
Sometimes deer make mistakes.
He became unnerved and hopped right into the path of a vulgar display of power in the form of a .308 bullet that was waiting for him on the other end.
This young buck fell victim to a classic bump maneuver on our lease. The driver, or “bumper” took a casual walk on a predetermined path to bump deer from a patch of raspberry brambles. He became unnerved and hopped right into the path of a vulgar display of power in the form of a .308 bullet that was waiting for him on the other end.