Whitetail Deer Shed Hunting on Your Property
Written By Scott Wilson (Missouri Real Estate Agent). Created on 01/28/2015.
One of the past times of a diehard white tail deer hunter is the hunt after the hunt! That is the 2nd hunting season that they seek the signs of those bucks they did not see during their Archery or Rifle hunt. Otherwise known as the "Shed Hunt".
Here in Missouri this usually begins the last week or so of January and runs though February. A lot of our clients that own hunting property look forward to this time of the year just as much as they do the Archery and Rifle season. As it can give way to the anticipation to the next hunting season.
For most hunting property owners they look to seek out the sheds and add to their years of generational deer heard sheds. This use to be done by vising the heavy toured paths, food plots or salt licks, but today landowners are more advanced and using several methods to capture deer sheds.
Many food plots may be covered in snow, which leaves it hard to capture sheds. Paths that were traveled during the rut may be altered as the deer heard up due to the harsh winter months and while salt lick's seem to be a good reliable source, but can be hindered due to harsh freezing temps that keeps the deer from visiting. So has evolved several methods that have seem to prove to be sure harvest success.
The first method many hunting property owners should do is simple. They continue to feed the heard after the season. In Missouri, it is illegal to feed "bait" 14 days prior. After the season, many will abandon this till late August. Although, those that enjoy shed hunting, know it is just as crucial after January 15th, as it is in August to provide the glory of the hunt. With weather that is unpredictable, feeding your heard in a central location can pin point a good sure honey hole when the sheds start to fall. Keep the feed coming and the sheds will be there when you arrive to stock the feeder back up.
A second method that has become more popular over the recent years is what is known as the "shed trap". A very non abrasive and harmless method. I say this as the word "trap" can lead many to think otherwise. This method is of the same philosophy of feeding your heard. Although it has an added feature where the hunting property owner will add feed between a set of trees. Reason, is they will wrap the tree's with fishing line, twin, rope or other material. They will supply feed to these isolated locations like many find going to work, school and church. This routine will lead to the bucks coming for a treat and with the wrapping around the tree's when the antlers are ready to shed, will have that helpful nudge while the buck devours that yummy treat the hunting property owner leaves for them to enjoy. Which then lends way to the property owner being rewarded with his trophy, The Shed.
A third method that I have also seen involves a hunting property owners pet. Yes, that is their friendly pup. Over the years, the training of dogs to hunt sheds has gained in popularity and more an more now a days you will see many posts on Facebook and Twitter with folks sharing their success of their companion with their find. Dedication and lots of patience is needed I understand for this method. The success though, can be very rewarding as it allows many hunting property owners to be able to cover a lot more ground without any added costs.
Every year I see new idea's, trends and enjoy each and everyone. As every year our white tail herd will shed their antlers and the more we as hunters and property owners seek the rewards, will give way to what awaits us next fall with archery and rifle season open.