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#6097871 - 12/23/15 06:15 AM Does, bucks, pattern, weather, etc.
shightower Offline

Registered: 08/26/12
Posts: 139
This post is similar to others that have recently posted.
In past years I have had bucks on a regular basis at the feeder, and doe early on.
This year I've had doe, but not on a regular basis, and very few bucks at the feeder.
The last three years this place has been very predictable, this year is different.
The majority of the deer are in the wheat fields, and not at the feeders.
It seems odd to me that on a wet year there should be more grass available so the wheat field wouldn't get used.
The last three years have been drought conditions and the wheat field didn't get used much.
Most of the pictures that people have posted have been bucks shot in the wheat field, so I don't think it's a local thing.
Also, an observation that I've made is If you like to wait like I do, and didn't harvest your buck early, your chances are slim. The bucks have no reason to come to the feeders.

Any old timers out there seen this before? How would you setup for next year? Would you change anything at all?
Looking back, I would have hunted the wheat field, and harvested a buck early, and saved money in corn.
My only hope is that the cold front this weekend will bring the bucks to the feeder the last days of the season.

#6098357 - 12/23/15 11:34 AM Re: Does, bucks, pattern, weather, etc. [Re: shightower]
stxranchman Online   content
Obie Juan Kenobi

Registered: 08/04/10
Posts: 52562
I would not change anything till I see what the rainfall does thru next summer. Deer have plenty to eat now without hitting a feeder.

#6098365 - 12/23/15 11:41 AM Re: Does, bucks, pattern, weather, etc. [Re: shightower]
txhunter1010 Offline
Extreme Tracker

Registered: 11/22/10
Posts: 4133
yeah we are seeing the same a few at feeders...( I actually shot my buck at feeder but it was just luck) and the rest of the deer we are seeing either on the neighbors oats..wheat..or just browsing in the thicker is a little frustrating compared to the past years....heck cameras aren't even getting many pics.....but it is just the way it is this year..good thing is the bucks will be bigger next year and for us we are gonna for sure plant some oats and a mixture to get them staying around better..

#6098513 - 12/23/15 01:18 PM Re: Does, bucks, pattern, weather, etc. [Re: shightower]
Western Offline
THF Celebrity

Registered: 04/20/11
Posts: 25948
Loc: Wise County Texas
I wont change a thing, I try to do what I can to the native growth every year, food plot and feeder as well. I would like to get a deer for the effort, but it is never guaranteed (at least where I hunt). Just another twist with mother nature and this time the deer got the draw.

BTW, still have seen a few super nice deer photos though, so a few fellas have been very fortunate.
“Never be afraid to try something new. Remember, amateurs built the Ark, professionals built the Titanic”

Friends don't let Friends drink and post.......

The first 5 day's after the weekend, are the hardest....


#6099324 - 12/23/15 09:54 PM Re: Does, bucks, pattern, weather, etc. [Re: shightower]
Sig220 Offline
Green Horn

Registered: 05/22/14
Posts: 4
I along with most of my fellow lease members have a ton of pics of bucks at our feeders, but only at night!! Hunted every weekend since the opener through the first of December, skipped a Sunday morning and that was the only morning I have had bucks on camera during shooting hours.

The lease is in SE Texas, btw. Just going by pics, I would say we have a bunch more bucks then to work on more balance!!

#6099428 - 12/23/15 11:43 PM Re: Does, bucks, pattern, weather, etc. [Re: shightower]
Halfadozen Offline
THF Trophy Hunter

Registered: 10/29/09
Posts: 8666
Loc: Parker County
What I have seen even in drought the winter grasses will grow more under heavier cover, where any moisture can hold. There are also natural browse and forbes that actually do well in some drought situations (natural reaction in order to proliferate). Post season scouting in mid January might show native grasses nibbled in thicker cover. If your ranch has cattle, they will pull the grass, not chew off above ground, so you will know.
In wet years, for some reason I have no clue, wheat seems to draw more deer. Corn is dessert, natural browse and forbs are the main coarse.
If possible set up protein feeders near edge of field/cover lines and a corn feeder a bit aways. Post rut bucks will need to re-energize anyway they can, and often.
Freedom is a fragile thing ...Those who have known freedom, and then lost it, have never known it again.
-- Ronald Reagan

#6099765 - 12/24/15 09:44 AM Re: Does, bucks, pattern, weather, etc. [Re: shightower]
Pitchfork Predator Offline
THF Celebrity

Registered: 01/25/13
Posts: 14086
Loc: Murphy, TX Dickens county
My experience has been in years like this you have to change things up and get out and be proactive...

Set up TC's on heavily used trails and see what you can learn and maybe pattern a buck.

Create mock scrapes at your sets and freshen them with doe heat scent. (this will bring those night time bucks out during the day)

Rattle some antlers.

Try a decoy.


Edited by Pitchfork Predator (12/24/15 09:46 AM)
Marc C. Helfrich
Retirement Planner

#6099784 - 12/24/15 10:02 AM Re: Does, bucks, pattern, weather, etc. [Re: shightower]
Txhunter65 Offline

Registered: 02/13/15
Posts: 826
Loc: Waxahachie, TX
We're seeing the same thing in northern Mills county. We've got 4 plots totaling about 50 acres and the last few years we would regularly see 20-30 deer from 4:30 to dark. This year you're lucky to see 3-4 but after dark there are a lot more. Only seen 2-3 mature deer during daylight. Very few bucks at the feeders making fawns.

#6099787 - 12/24/15 10:03 AM Re: Does, bucks, pattern, weather, etc. [Re: shightower]
Txhunter65 Offline

Registered: 02/13/15
Posts: 826
Loc: Waxahachie, TX
Mostly not making. Love auto correct.


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