Adam, Daniel, and I have been scouting while doing field work. I’m a bit shocked that we are finding acorns on the ground already. Typically we don’t find acorns on the ground until late September. There are always a few acorns that were aborted, damaged by insects, etc., that fall early. We are finding good acorns along with hulls, scat, etc. Deer are clearly already eating acorns!
The Proving Grounds is primary forested. There are oaks everywhere! During years when there is a good acorn crop it can be very difficult to pattern deer because there’s food everywhere. In addition, if deer are alerted or spooked it is very easy for them to feed elsewhere given these conditions.
When these conditions occur hunters need to continue to scout for fresh sign and be very careful not to alert deer when entering, hunting, and exiting a stand.
We’ll keep you posted week by week about what we observe in the field and what strategies are working best.