My friend and fellow whitetail hunting strategist Michael Engelmeyer shared the following images with me earlier today.
Unfortunately, my Reconyx units capture this same scenario too often at The Proving Grounds and my clients’ properties. Coyotes can’t afford to waste much energy this time of year. When they are trailing, they are after a meal!
Yes, coyotes do kill adult bucks — especially during the post rut when many mature bucks are in poor physical condition and resources are usually too limited for them to fully recover until spring. Even if the buck in the photo sequence above wasn’t killed by the coyote, he likely had to expend a lot of calories to avoid being killed. That additional stress could lead to other conditions/scenarios resulting in an ill-fated future for the buck. There are a lot of ramifications to coyotes besides spooking deer.
Check out GDTV 4 on GrowingDeer.tv and see how I handle stress-inducing coyote.
I REALLY like to turkey hunt. I like to take my family members and friends turkey hunting. I like to simply listen to turkeys call. I like to eat turkeys. Most predators like to eat turkeys. I like turkeys — predators like turkeys. That’s a conflict.
So today while it was very cold, my friend Bill Stimson and I set 30+ traps for raccoons/opossums at The Proving Grounds. Raccoons/opossums don’t move much when it’s cold. It was 14° this morning and a low of 17°, 13°, and 8° predicted for the next three mornings.
However, it will warm up and the first night it does, the raccoons/opossums will move. The traps are set and the catch should be good.
It’s a good feeling to work toward a few more turkey eggs being able to hatch, more poults surviving, and a few more gobblers to be heard. Besides, trapping is like Christmas in a way — it’s always exciting to wake and check what’s under the tree! I’m excited about tomorrow morning!
Hunted the Boom North plot this afternoon. We were in the stand by 2:30. Michael Engelmeyer – my friend that takes the cool images seen in many of the hunting gear ads — was running the video camera. Michael’s a great hunter and always adds good insight to my stand setups/hunting strategies.
We both felt the setup and strategy was good, and waited patiently for a mature buck to appear. We heard two different flocks of turkeys, and lots of other commotion toward the Crabapple plot which is 200 yards to the northeast and at 300 feet lower elevation in relation to our location. We were skunked this afternoon, but will be doing some recon and hanging a stand in Crabapple for later this week.
Crabapple is in a bottom – next to a creek. Plots in bottoms can be tough to hunt during warmer weather as deer tend to bed high and move down to plots to feed. The rising thermals (hot air rises) usually alerts deer to the presence of a predator (hunter) located in a bottom. However, air rarely rises when the temps are very cold as they are now (no sign of global warming at The Proving Grounds lately).
The thermal currents should be sinking toward the creek (cold air sinks). This is more prevalent at the Crabapple plot because it is at the base of a large hill to the west. Hence the field is shaded by the sun early in the afternoon – allowing the air to cool even quicker. This will provide us the ability to enter a stand at Crabapple with the thermals in our favor. Details about the Crabapple strategy and hunt coming soon!
Randall Martin and I hunted at The Proving Grounds this afternoon. We hunted a plot with standing corn that has been about 60% consumed. I checked for sign Sunday afternoon briefly and the plot literally smelled like deer so I was very excited to hunt that location today. We stalked to the stand about 2 PM this afternoon, got up quietly, and had a favorable wind during the hunt. We didn’t see a deer! We didn’t see a turkey, and only saw one squirrel. It will be interesting to learn if the Reconyx cameras at The Proving Grounds captured any deer in other plots while we were getting skunked at the Hidden Valley Two plot. I’ll let you know when I check cameras next time.