Hunting pressure, part 2

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Schultzy
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Hunting pressure, part 2

Unread postby Schultzy » Wed May 12, 2010 3:03 pm

For the bear hunters out there who deal with allot of hunting pressure from other bear hunters/baiters- What's worked for you In situations like this? What hasn't? What do you do different? Feel free to speak your mind here.


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Re: Hunting pressure, part 2

Unread postby Weasel Walker » Thu May 13, 2010 6:17 am

Extra effort in placement. Will say a Duluth Pack with hollow log with bait is heavy.

I've spoke with people to see what baits work well in the region. Also pay attention to bait dealers - see what is the first item they advertise and don't buy the stuff they have on special.

Things vary with area. Hunters around me swear by fatty feed towards kill season. Spoke with a guide in N. MN that uses popcorn during kill season. Swears they keep trying to fill up on it and it blows through them.

Also stick with it. Some of my best results happen during worst condtions and me having a bad attitude - rain, farming activity, wind, neighbors dogs, cold, etc. Dan's experience with bath tub bear is perfect example of such.
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Re: Hunting pressure, part 2

Unread postby dan » Thu May 13, 2010 10:32 am

I would say bait placement, getting it more remote... Really studying maps to find the spots that should hold big bears that can't be seen from the road. Places like a dry land peninsula between two swamps that can't be seen from a road. Bait a high spot to get you and your wind above the educated scent winding circling old brutes.
Being more careful to follow the rules of big bear hunting... In low pressure areas you might get big bears just throwing a bait out any where, but using obstacles and such other tricks are almost mandatory in pressure situations. Face it a bear don't get to be 15 years old in pressure areas by walking right into peoples baits.
Have lots of good options, 3 or 4 baits per hunter. Use cameras to know when your bear is hitting...
Hide your bait trail, but put a marker out so they know someone is around somewhere.
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Re: Hunting pressure, part 2

Unread postby Schultzy » Tue Jun 22, 2010 2:33 pm

I can't say this Is 100% fact but It sure seems once bear baiting has been going for a few weeks and the hunting season starts the bear's bedding area's seem to change too. To me It almost seems like their bedding very close to these baits and they know when were coming In and going and when other bear are coming and going. Sows I don't think do this but I believe boars do. Specially the older/bigger ones.
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Re: Hunting pressure, part 2

Unread postby dan » Wed Jun 23, 2010 9:59 am

Interesting Shultzy... I believe bears bed closer to the baits and "guard" it a lot too... However, I think putting the bait where big bears feel comfortable will help big bears find the bait quicker and help ensure that they bed nearby.
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Re: Hunting pressure, part 2

Unread postby Schultzy » Thu Jun 24, 2010 3:50 am

However, I think putting the bait where big bears feel comfortable will help big bears find the bait quicker and help ensure that they bed nearby.
I've always believed this too and still do but some times I wonder. Since the big Increase with bear hunters In the area I hunt It seems the baits that we have closer to the road seem to get more attention then the baits we have a mile or so back that are In excellent bear habitat. I'm damn near starting to believe that these bear are running close to these roads being that's where all the food Is being everyone baits/hunts 100 yards or so off of the road. Their having success doing It too. I've saw these close set ups off of the roads that these guides are doing. The habitat pretty much sucks but their shooting bear with these set ups. 90% of their set ups are exactly this. Some of the bear their shooting are nice bear too. It blows me away that were not having better success In our baits that are much farther off of the road. The habitat were baiting In Is great. These same baits of ours that were off the road a ways aren't getting bear shot off of them like In years pass. A few of these baits were damn near slam dunks every year. That was until the explosion of guides and people.

We've been experimenting with this allot the last 5 years. A few of the baits that we've had closer to the road we've moved back to try and make the bear more comfortable. A few other baits we've moved closer to the road. So far the ones that we moved farther away have gotten less activity during the day. Much more night hitting at these baits. It's frustrating no doubt. I will say this though that the majority of the big bear pics we get come from the baits that are farther off of the road. 9 times out of 10 though these big bruins don't show up till 1 to 2 In the morning. It almost makes me think there munching on the other baits where all of the other food Is and once they clean that up they venture on back out of the way where our bait Is. It could be too that our selection of bait we use Isn't as good as the other baits In the area but I'm thinking that's not the main reason. Who knows I guess. We'll still continue to bait like we have In years pass but we'll keep experimenting like we've been doing the last 5 or so years too. Another thing too, It's looking as though I'll be able to get some candy this year so It shall be Interesting If that helps out with the day time hits once the baiting season Is a few weeks old and hunting starts. One more thing I'll add to this, our baits are farther back then 95% of the other baiters and guides.

I also agree with you Dan that getting back Is the way to go. Getting back to me though means 2 to 3 miles at least If not farther In a heavily pressured area. Going back 1.5 miles or so to me Isn't going to do much good as were almost already doing this with some of our set ups. There's bears I believe that have never saw a human. Them are the bears In these big public tracts that have thousands of acres away from roads. Some day I will try this and go back 3 to 5 miles deep In the woods. It will take a ton of work though. This area we hunt I guarantee has woods/swamp that goes 40 miles deep. Most of It's never been walked on by the hunters of today.
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Re: Hunting pressure, part 2

Unread postby dan » Thu Jun 24, 2010 4:31 am

My remote baits are getting hit better than the ones I put near the roads... So Im getting the opisate results you are.
I do see something you may be overlooking though...
I think getting back a 1/2 mile to a mile can be a huge benifit even more so than getting way back... I often find swamps with great habitat that are back from the road and you need a topo to see. The guides and hoard of hunter will be near the road. Real close.. I look for the areas back by the swamp where the big bears like to lie in the cool shady areas and find that when they get ready to hit the roadside baits they hit mine 1st and kind of stage there before heading to the road
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Re: Hunting pressure, part 2

Unread postby Schultzy » Thu Jun 24, 2010 6:22 am

I do see something you may be overlooking though...
I think getting back a 1/2 mile to a mile can be a huge benefit even more so than getting way back... I often find swamps with great habitat that are back from the road and you need a topo to see.
Been using aerial maps for a long time up there. The last 10 or so years we started using the topo's as well. It's amazing of the swamps that we didn't know about until we got Into these topo's. These maps are awesome. We've been hunting this specific area for 20+ years so were getting to know It pretty well.
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Re: Hunting pressure, part 2

Unread postby hunt n nut » Fri Jun 25, 2010 2:31 pm

It seems baits close to roads may get hit often, I think maybe because there are more of them close to roads. But when are they getting hit, more after dark? For me seems like the ones further back can offer more daylight activity.
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Re: Hunting pressure, part 2

Unread postby dan » Sat Jun 26, 2010 10:47 am

Good point Nut!

I monitered all my baits with trail cam's and found a few shy smaller bears at the baits near the roads and the remote ones would start out with a ton of bear activity that would peter out when a couple big boars would take over and then I would get less activity on those baits but would have more quality targets.
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Re: Hunting pressure, part 2

Unread postby martin peters » Mon Jun 28, 2010 1:21 am

I have some walk in baits that are within 1/2 mile of a road. They are in thick cover funnel areas and have produced some nice bears but these are always one bear per year stands and most of the time early season stands. As the season goes on the stands that are farther back in away from the competition work better. When baiting, I try to always approach stands with the wind blowing to the bait and don't try to be quiet going in or out. I had one stand many years ago where I would canoe a lake and up a beaver run into the swamp where I would step out of the canoe 20 yds from the stand, I thought easy baiting,good area,less ground scent. This bait had a good bear on it until I blew the bear off the bait from 20 yds away one day and that bait went cold. That bear did not feel safe at the bait. Start your baits early even if you don't bait them on a regular schedule and as the season gets closer then it becomes important to keep the bears at your stands fed. Don't let your baits run out prior to the weekend, I always try to bait heavy before the weekends and after heavy rains. A lot of bear hunters bait weekends and you don't want your bait to run out during a weekend when every one else has good bait on their stand. In Michigan we cannot put bait in a container unless on private land so baits do get rained out. Good area,good bait,and treat the stand site right by making the bears feel safe while feeding.
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Re: Hunting pressure, part 2

Unread postby Schultzy » Tue Jun 29, 2010 11:53 am

It seems baits close to roads may get hit often, I think maybe because there are more of them close to roads.
I agree and It's becoming more and more common In the area I'm hunting.

But when are they getting hit, more after dark? For me seems like the ones further back can offer more daylight activity.
Minus the last 2 years the ones closer to the road have been our better baits the last 5 to 6 years with day light hits and shooting bear. Years ago It was the complete opposite.
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Re: Hunting pressure, part 2

Unread postby Singing Bridge » Mon Jul 12, 2010 1:05 am

martin peters wrote: I would step out of the canoe 20 yds from the stand, I thought easy baiting,good area,less ground scent. This bait had a good bear on it until I blew the bear off the bait from 20 yds away one day and that bait went cold. That bear did not feel safe at the bait.


This is an interesting point, and I had it happen to me last year. Try not to scare the BeJesus out of a target bear while approaching your bait, to replenish it. Last year I had a great entrance/exit route, that would keep me out of sight and not have my wind blow down to a circling bear, for the most part. It was a level draw with a tiny flow of water down the bottom of it. I could walk in the water and pop out of the draw into the stand.

I went to replenish the bait the day before I hunted, and blew a big bruin off the bait at high noon. I had no indication of him being there at that time of day previously. My schedule pretty much forced my hand at hunting the stand the next day. Four hours before dark a 160 pound male came in and ate corn for over an hour while I videotaped him (THANKS UNCLE LOU FOR THE BARK SILENCER! I had to shift positions while sitting against the tree a number of times, and he absolutely would have heard it otherwise!). The big fella came in and started circling right before dark, but wouldn't commit to bow range after being shocked the day before. There is almost no hunting pressure here, he may not have even shown up if there was. I had to exit after dark and walk by the big fella again for the trip home- gotta love bow hunting!

Moral of the story, try not to scare the crap out of the bear while baiting the stand- good advice, MP.
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Re: Hunting pressure, part 2

Unread postby dan » Mon Jul 12, 2010 2:37 am

Scared a few myself... They don't tend to come back after that.
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Re: Hunting pressure, part 2

Unread postby dan » Mon Mar 04, 2013 4:09 am

Scared a few myself... They don't tend to come back after that.


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