Start Your Pre-Season Deer Hunting Scouting Now So You’ll Be Ready Opening Day

Have you started any summer scouting for deer hunting season yet?

C.Alsheimer 00992-00511S June 15If not, now’s a good time to begin so you can get a handle on what’s happening with your bucks and does, and even check out fawns or little ones that are hanging around with the does. Does are dropping fawns throughout the country, with most if not all of them already on the ground and growing since it’s mid-summer and autumn is just a few months away.

How close is deer season? Very close. Florida’s Zone A season, in the southernmost portion of the state, opens Aug. 3 and South Carolina’s private land season in three zones opens Aug. 15. That’s just a few weeks away!

Many deer hunters know that one of the best times to scout is immediately after the season ends. Deer are still in their winter patterns, and you can find or check travel routes, feeding and bedding zones, and maybe even a few new places by getting out for some post-season scouting. Take your binoculars, maybe hang some game cameras and put boots on the ground before the spring green-up when things start changing.

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Deer will be in areas where food and habitat best suits them. In summer, they may not be in the same specific areas they’ll be spotted during autumn and winter. We see bucks in bachelor groups in summer and then, sometimes, wonder where the heck they all went when we’re in a stand. They split up, define their territorial ranges, and what we saw in summer may have us scratching our heads in winter.

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But that’s part of year-round scouting. It helps us learn where they are, where they go (usually!) and gives us more information on their movements. By the time autumn rolls around we’re a little more tuned in to what’s going on.

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