“Ozone generators: Do they really work?”
That’s a question I’ve gotten a lot here at Deer & Deer Hunting the past few years. I’ve tried to answer these questions on Deer Talk Now and through our Facebook and Twitter pages. As is the case with all of the product reviews I do here for my Whitetail Wisdom blog, I only address products that I’ve actually used and believe in. This is definitely one of them.
by Daniel E. Schmidt
I can’t imagine how many big bucks I would have on my wall today had we had ozone generators when I was younger. I’m three years into using these units while hunting, and I am not only a firm believer, I cringe every time I have to hunt without one (which actually happened at least twice this year when I forgot my backpack at the house).
As most of you probably already know, I had a rough time this past month or so with health issues, but I’m back at it now and glad to be able to spend more time in the woods. My latest hunt took place two weeks ago when we traveled down to Illinois to hunt with my good friend Steve Bartylla. Steve set me up in a prime spot where I could hunt off the ground and be close enough to walk out if the cold weather was too much for me (blood thinners have me cold ALL the time these days). After a day of many deer sightings but no shooters, I decided to ratchet it up a notch and hunt from a rock-solid Rivers Edge ladder stand.
The stand was overlooking a picked cornfield, but it was tucked inside a wooded ridge that was loaded with deer sign. The wind direction for this hunt was almost perfect — it was in my face — and a well-used deer trail crossed the woods right in front of me. It couldn’t have been more perfect of a set up. Well, that is until the buck of the year showed up.
The big, mature 8-pointer appeared on the hillside about 80 yards in front of me and to my left just as the sun was dipping toward the horizon. I had taken all scent precautions that day, including showering with Wildlife Research Center Scent Killer® Body Wash and sprayed my boots and gear with Scent Killer Gold® before walking out to the stand.
Then, after climbing into the stand, I attached my Ozoinics® unit to the side of the tree and pointed it downwind of my position. I didn’t expect any deer to show up from behind me, but I’ve learned to never say never in these so-called slam-dunk stand locations. Those big, mature bucks seem to never follow the script.
Sure enough, as that buck approached, he didn’t follow the script. Instead of staying on that well-worn trail, he started veering off to my left, which was taking him closer and closer to my scent stream. With the Savage slug gun to my shoulder, I tracked the buck through the Hawke DEERPass scope as he stepped closer and closer. When he was less than 40 yards out, he stepped directly into my scent stream but didn’t even flinch. In fact, he was licking his nose feverishly (to moisten his nasal lining) in anticipation of approaching a group of deer (which included three bucks) that were already in the picked cornfield on the other side of my stand location.
Heart hammering, I had seen enough. I bleated with my mouth and the buck stopped. KA-BOOM! He dropped dead in his tracks.
I’m sending the buck’s jawbone out to have him aged, but he was definitely mature. Having a monarch like that walk right up to your tree stand and be completely unaware that you’re there is something that’s hard describe.
How Does it Work?
Ozone generators work by transforming oxygen molecules into ozone molecules. Combined with a small fan (like in the Ozonics unit), the generator projects these molecules downwind of your location and over your entire scent imprint. From there, these unstable molecules bond with scent molecules and renders them unrecognizable to white-tailed deer and other animals with refined senses. It’s really quite amazing to see deer that would otherwise snort and run away to walk through a scent stream and not even hesitate.
I’ve shot many deer this fall already, and I’ve yet to be busted while hunting with an Ozonics unit. These hunts included a September hunt where I shot a mature doe that came to a clover plot and fed for 30 minutes directly downwind of me before I shot her. This old nanny was high-wired to begin with, but that was from the presence of other deer coming out of the woods behind her. A 10 mph wind blew from me to her, and she never knew I was there. I was amazed at this, because old does, in my opinion, are way smarter that way than most bucks.
New Units to Check Out
If you’re thinking about getting your first Ozonics® generator or simply upgrading from what you already have, check out the new camouflaged versions they are now offering.
The HR-200 TS is decked out in Mossy Oak Treestand camo, while the HR-200 LC features the Mathews Lost Camo pattern. Both work like the original unit, which can be mounted above you in your tree stand or to a roof brace on your ground blind.
Also new are the extended life batteries. These are really helpful for when you’re hunting all day during the rut, or simply want a battery that will last for several hunts in a row.
For more on Ozonics® and ozone technology, check out this video: