quality deer management

Once a Spike, Always a Spike: Deer Hunting’s Big Myth

White-tailed deer tend to grow antlers that are fairly well-balanced. That is, one side looks pretty much like the other. Keep in mind, however, that no two antlers are ever exactly alike, although their similarities from side to side, or even from one buck to the next, are sometimes striking. Nevertheless, deer antlers are...

5 Ways to Analyze Your Deer Hunting Season

Every year as a hunter, it is vital that you evaluate your past season and modify or change your tactics to increase your chance of success in the future. Even if you caught up with that big ol’ doe to fill your freezer, or executed a perfect shot with your crossbow on a trophy...

Big Bucks: The Treasure of Junkyard

Sometimes you get but one chance at the buck of a lifetime. Other times, the deer comes back … and back … and back. When Doug Knott and his son Tyler of Blakesburg, Iowa, first saw the whitetail they nicknamed Junkyard in a game-camera photo taken on Oct. 5, 2015, neither had any idea...

Controversial Deer Management: The Latest in Whitetail Sterilization

In the world of whitetail population management, the work of Dr. Tony DeNicola falls somewhere between scientific research and anti-hunting ethos. Dr. DeNicola is founder and president of White Buffalo Inc., a Connecticut-based non-profit that helps urban communities deal with their deer overpopulation problems (whitebuffaloinc.com). One of the most controversial methods White Buffalo uses...

Revealed: The Truth About Spotlight Deer Surveys

Hunters expect wildlife managers to determine how many deer there are in an area, and biologists strive to do so. Common approaches to examine deer population size and trends include harvest data reconstruction, pellet and track counts, and browse, camera, aerial, infrared and thermal-imaging surveys. By John J. Ozoga Probably one of the most...

The Facts and Truth About Culling Bucks

Culling is the selective removal of presumably inferior deer in order to improve the quality of the remaining population. Among whitetails, the culling harvest strategy generally involves targeting those bucks with inferior antlers for removal to improve overall antler quality of those left to do the breeding and for harvest at an older age....

How to Transform Bedding Areas, Create Deer Ambush Sites

A lot of deer hunters are interested in managing their properties for good deer habitat. But Jim Ward of Iowa City, Iowa, is taking things way beyond just planting a food plot and hoping deer show up. Ward, who runs Jim Ward’s Whitetail Academy, manipulates the landscape to create buck bedding areas, preferred trails...

Diversity is Your Best Food Plot Plan for Year-Round Forage

As I walked down the trail enclosed overhead by bare oak branches, I crept past several green fields full of clovers and other growing plants. Farther down the trail, I stop at a secluded brown food plot that appeared to have been abandoned long ago. The lush, green soybeans from summer were now thin-stalked...