Hunting pressure affects the way deer behave and can be a major factor during your hunt. For those that aren’t familiar, hunting pressure happens when you’re hunting a property so often and so aggressively that the deer become aware of your presence. Hunting pressure is heightened when there’s a high volume of hunters in one area of a hunting property and when all of those hunters hunt the same spot on the same property all the time. The deer herd quickly become wise to the traffic and potential danger and they start to retreat to a safer area, often at the opposite end of the hunting property. This might sound daunting, but if you know about it, you can take steps to work around it. Here are five tips on how to combat hunting pressure.
1. Go to Where They’ll Be
If you notice an influx of hunters at the entrance of the property you’re hunting, try to head off the deer before they’ve even begun to migrate. The deer will likely retreat to the back of the property. Move your Stump blind preemptively to be ahead of the game. Noticing the inevitable shift in location will give you a leg up on the herd. If you notice it soon enough, you might be the first hunter at the receiving end of the migration and have full access to the herd. Our Stump ‘Scout’ blinds can easily be moved around any hunting property due to the ski base and rigid steel hitch.
2. Create a Sanctuary
It’s important to leave a section of a hunting property untouched. Designate a piece of the property as the sanctuary and don’t hunt there. Don’t go there at all if you can avoid it. Make it as natural of a place as possible, untouched by humans. If the deer herd knows that there are hunters on every inch of your property, they will stop coming to the property altogether.
3. Hunt the Right Times
If you hunt at the exact same time every day, the deer will eventually sense your pattern and will start coming out at different times of day. If you notice that the deer have disappeared at a time when they used to be abundant, check your trail cameras and see if their pattern has changed. If they’ve altered their schedule, then you should alter yours and mix it up from then on. Maybe try hunting different times within a broader window instead of the exact same hour every time.
4. Hide Your Scent
Try masking your scent more than you have been. Think about every aspect, down to your daily routine. If you sprayed yourself with a scent-eliminating spray but are walking around with an open mug of coffee, then you’re still sharing a scent with the deer herd. Our Stump blinds keep scent contained, so once you’re inside the blind you can open that mug of coffee and have peace of mind.
5. Don’t Be Afraid to Hit Pause
If you’ve taken every precaution and are still not seeing any deer, then consider taking a break until the hunting pressure wears off. It’s better to take the time and let things settle than to push it and make the hunting pressure even worse, potentially damaging your chances at that location for the rest of the season.
When hunting season opens, it’s incredibly tempting to hunt every day at your favorite location at the excitement of harvesting a deer, but it’s better to be careful and patient to avoid unnecessary hunting pressure. Our Stump blinds can help you avoid hunting pressure for a steady and successful season.
How do you handle hunting pressure? Let us know in the comments below!