The sport of bow hunting is fast becoming popular. Many believe that hunting with a bow and arrow is more ethical than hunting with guns. They believe that the high-powered guns that we have today hardly give the prey any chance.
Bow hunting comes with its own set of challenges and advantages when compared to hunting with firearms. Every hunting season thousands of bow hunting enthusiasts throng the forest. The hunting season does a great job keeping herbivorous animals like deer in check. Overpopulation of deer destroys the forest undergrowth- disastrous to the ecosystem!
Going by the number of hunting licenses issued by the National Survey of Fishing, Hunting and Wildlife-Associated Recreation, deer is the most hunted animal in the US. Bow hunting presents unique sets of challenges to the hunter.
Hours of practice on the range or the best equipment, make little difference if you do not know your prey well. That is something that a newbie deer hunter should be wary of. Before you plan for your deer hunting trip, it makes sense to learn some basic techniques used.
This guide made with the help of seasoned hunters will help you get on the right foot this deer hunting season. Here some basic deer hunting techniques with a bow-
Hit the woods early in the hunting season
It makes sense for bow hunters to start early in the hunting season. It is the time when the deer do not get spooked too easily. For bow hunting, the hunter must get close to the quarry. After the booming of guns starts, the deer start to get jittery. At the fag end of the season, it becomes extremely difficult to bag one.
Do not ever pressurize your prey
You will be doing a disservice to yourself and your fellow hunters if you scare off the prey. You need to tread lightly in the woods. Do not scout your hunting space too often. In many cases, the deer will come to your space when overcrowded by other hunters in other areas.
Find out where the deer eat and sleep
Your chances of a successful hunt will magnify many times when you find out their feeding grounds. Deer flock to where their favorite food is found. Ask locals and other people who have hunted these spots to get accurate info. Deer have favorite areas to bed for the night too.
Once you find out these areas and the routes leading to them, all you have to do is find a convenient spot and relax until they turn up on the route. You can even set up cameras to help you track their preferred route. From a comfortable vantage, it should be easy hunting!
During breeding time
This is the time for you to follow the doe even though bucks are the preferred game. Wherever a doe is, the buck will not be far off. Tread carefully though. During the rutting season, the doe will be doubly wary. It will be watching out for horny bucks as well as the hunters. A blundering hunter is bound to spook away the wary doe and its suitor.
During the rutting season, the bucks get into fights with each other. Use your ears to catch any noise like grunts, a chase or a fight. The sounds typical of the rutting season will help you locate your prey easily.
If you are not good at stalking silently, you can arrive early in the morning, choose a vantage in their preferred route and wait until noon or evening to ambush your unwary quarry.
Late in the season
This time of the year it becomes very cold and is uncomfortable to hunt. This is the worst time for you to hunt as the deer will be extremely wary. The merest hint of any alien noise or smell with spook it away.
One advantage you have late in the season is that the food will be scarce. It makes sense to find out their food source and set up a vantage point in the route. If you reach there early in the morning and camouflage yourself well, you will have a good chance to score a buck.
Master the art of stalking
Stalking a wild animal takes utmost stealth and skill. If you accompany an expert stalker, you can pick up a few tips and strategies. For bowhunting, you need to get as close to the prey as possible for a sure-shot kill. With patience and time, you will improve your stealth and stalking skills considerably.
To wind off
In the above guide, you must have noticed, equipment and accessories were not mentioned. Even the best equipment or accessory, will not make a hunt successful if you cannot spot your prey or get near it.
This guide will not only help you locate prey but also help make your hunt successful. So, get out there armed with knowledge this hunting season to bag your buck.