Bedding question..please help

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cornfedkiller
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Bedding question..please help

Unread postby cornfedkiller » Thu Jul 01, 2010 2:09 pm

Alright I just got done re-watching a little of the videos, and ever since I started watching it a couple weeks ago, I have had one question that has really been burning in my mind (Ive actually been thinking about it longer than that). Alright I have about 10 questions that Im wondering, but we'll start with this one because I can probably figure some of the others out myself once I get this figured out, and this one is bothering me/confusing me the most.

Ok, so during your after-season scouting, you find a couple bedding areas..Next season, how do you know which bedding area to hunt on a given day? Do bucks change their bedding areas based on where they are feeding at the time, where he feels like staying, etc, and stay in that same bed for maybe a couple days/week(s), OR do they change up their beds every day/night based on something like the wind (ie, does he bed in bed1 with a west wind, and in bed2 with an east wind)?

If scenario 1 is the case, it makes total sense to me why you would check for fresh sign, then based on fresh sign at a bedding area, it would be safe to assume he is bedding there at that time, and then setting up where the wind allows.

If scenario 2 is the case, it seems like you would have to know which beds he beds in for each wind (not sure how you would figure that out without just assuming), and hunt accordingly, but I dont know what fresh sign would really do for you if this is the case...

Im sure I will have many more questions in the future, but I would have alot more time to think them up if I could get this cleared up in my head..

Thanks fellas!


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Re: Bedding question..please help

Unread postby dan » Thu Jul 01, 2010 2:52 pm

how do you know which bedding area to hunt on a given day?

I hunt the one most likely to produce based on scouting, where and when I am seeing the target animals when glassing, shining, or on cameras. based on sign found at food sources, based on wind direction, or guess based on all of the above.
The next day I cross that spot off the list and pick the next most likely.

bucks change their bedding areas based on where they are feeding at the time, where he feels like staying, etc, and stay in that same bed for maybe a couple days/week(s), OR do they change up their beds every day/night based on something like the wind (ie, does he bed in bed1 with a west wind,

Differing bedding areas are used / or changed for a wide variety of reasons like wind direction, food sources changing, pressure, etc..
They tend to bed in the same spot for a week or two straight, sometimes longer (especially with older bucks) This can vary with a certain bucks personality...
When your scouting in spring it should be pretty obvious when a bed is used just for a certain wind... Mature bucks don't leave themselves vulnerable, so beds that over look a valley, an opening, or any bed that is in thick cover but on the edge using vision to look out will generally have a wind advantage from behind "or where the deer ain't looking"
The beds you find on level ground in the middle of thick cover where there not using there eyes as much as they are there ears may get used on any wind depending on down wind escape roughts...
When food changes, and that can be often, they might move beds, and they might travel to the food from the old bed... some of it is guessing, but its educated guesses based on scouting and experience.
The good part is, every time you hunt a bedding area and don't see the buck your after it narrows down the ones he could be in...

If scenario 1 is the case, it makes total sense to me why you would check for fresh sign, then based on fresh sign at a bedding area, it would be safe to assume he is bedding there at that time

The mention of spot checking in the DVD is a little bit off if you ask me... Sometimes in the early season the big mature bucks don't leave much sign and if they are in a bedding area on a regular basis they will chase off the smaller or younger bucks that do leave a lot of sign.
Case in point, the person who insisted on the spot checking portion of that DVD went on a hunt with me in a public marsh over here in Wisconsin where I was going to try and help him get his 1st P&Y buck... I had been seeing a 150 inch 8 pointer in a certain field every night just after dark and new he had to be coming from one of two beds that were nearby on the public. Once either bed was hunted the buck would likely know he was being hunted cause of the close proximity and relocate. So it made sense for us both to hunt at the same time covering both bedding areas 100 yards apart... Like I generally do, I gave my guest his choice of spots to which he wanted the one I assumed "most likely" until we got to the tree and there were no rubs, no big heavy trails, not much sign at all... Then he wanted to go to the second spot. To which he got really excited by heavy rublines going into the bedding area. To me, that was a sign of a 2 1/2 year old, maybe a 3 year old... But the 1st bedding area seemed like the ticket because the lack of sign told me there was some reason the little bucks were not bedding there... ;)
So I gladly switched spots... No shooters for him. However over an hour before dark the 150 inch buck rose out of his bed 45 yards from me in the cattails. Unfortunately I hit him in the shoulder blade and did not recover him. And thats just one example of many that has proven to me, that sometimes a lack of sign directly at the staging area / hunting spot aint always a bad thing.
And really, my point is if you go in there to "spot check" you got your scent in there, so now if you don't hunt it you might as well have cause the deer will know you have been there. And the last thing you need to do when entering a staging area where you suspect a buck may be bedded nearby is wander around looking for sign... You need to have a well thought out plan on how to get to the tree without being detected.
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Re: Bedding question..please help

Unread postby cornfedkiller » Thu Jul 01, 2010 3:15 pm

I hunt the one most likely to produce based on scouting, where and when I am seeing the target animals when glassing, shining, or on cameras. based on sign found at food sources, based on wind direction, or guess based on all of the above.
The next day I cross that spot off the list and pick the next most likely.


So is it safe to assume that he is bedding at one of the beds closest to where he is feeding, or not necessarily?

Also, correct me if Im wrong, but what you are saying is pick the bedding area you THINK he's at for that week or two based on an educated guess, hunt it for one evening given the correct wind. If nothing appears, pick a new bedding area and do the same.
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Re: Bedding question..please help

Unread postby dan » Thu Jul 01, 2010 9:22 pm

So is it safe to assume that he is bedding at one of the beds closest to where he is feeding, or not necessarily?

"Generally" they bed near to the food source. But thats a generality. They still have to be in a bed they feel really safe at. So they may or may not be in the one closest to the food source based of there feeling of security or past experiances at the two spots.


Also, correct me if Im wrong, but what you are saying is pick the bedding area you THINK he's at for that week or two based on an educated guess, hunt it for one evening given the correct wind. If nothing appears, pick a new bedding area and do the same.

Pretty much... No reason to keep hunting where the bucks not bedding. You are also narrowing down the possibilitys of where he could be. So a hunter needs to be mobile and keep moving in order to stay successful IMHO
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Re: Bedding question..please help

Unread postby cornfedkiller » Fri Jul 02, 2010 12:26 am

Pretty much... No reason to keep hunting where the bucks not bedding. You are also narrowing down the possibilitys of where he could be. So a hunter needs to be mobile and keep moving in order to stay successful IMHO


So if you hunt one bed, see nothing, then cant hunt again for a week or two, and pick a different bed to hunt that evening, its entirely possible that the buck is now using the first bed you hunted??

Ok next question on the list: This might be a dumb question because it seems pretty obvious to me, but say Im out scouting at midday and a buck gets up 50 yards off to my right and runs off..is it safe to assume he was in one of his beds, and I should check around where he got up from for a bed?
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Re: Bedding question..please help

Unread postby Black Squirrel » Fri Jul 02, 2010 1:41 am

cornfedkiller wrote:

Ok next question on the list: This might be a dumb question because it seems pretty obvious to me, but say Im out scouting at midday and a buck gets up 50 yards off to my right and runs off..is it safe to assume he was in one of his beds, and I should check around where he got up from for a bed?

I'll take a stab at this one. If you see a buck get up out of a bed at midday, you can assume that is probably one of his daytime beds. Get all the info you can while you are there, the damage is done from spooking him anyway. Find the bed, get in it and see what the deer sees. Also, note weather conditions like wind direction, temp, sun or no sun. Where is the nearest prime food source. Ask yourself where can I set up on him, how close can I get without spooking him, where does he go after rising from his bed (staging area)? It shouldn't be too far away. What is giving the buck a sense of security in this place and how can you exploit it? This is a major piece of the puzzle, so analyze it and analyze it again. When conditions are similar, you be somewhat confident, he will repeat this pattern.
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Re: Bedding question..please help

Unread postby cornfedkiller » Fri Jul 02, 2010 5:30 am

Black Squirrel wrote: I'll take a stab at this one. If you see a buck get up out of a bed at midday, you can assume that is probably one of his daytime beds. Get all the info you can while you are there, the damage is done from spooking him anyway. Find the bed, get in it and see what the deer sees. Also, note weather conditions like wind direction, temp, sun or no sun. Where is the nearest prime food source. Ask yourself where can I set up on him, how close can I get without spooking him, where does he go after rising from his bed (staging area)? It shouldn't be too far away. What is giving the buck a sense of security in this place and how can you exploit it? This is a major piece of the puzzle, so analyze it and analyze it again. When conditions are similar, you be somewhat confident, he will repeat this pattern.


Thanks makes sense..Im still not sure how the heck you get within 50-75 yards from a place you know a deer is bedded and hang a stand without him seeing or hearing you..Seems crazy to me..
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Re: Bedding question..please help

Unread postby Black Squirrel » Fri Jul 02, 2010 6:02 am

cornfedkiller wrote:[
Thanks makes sense..Im still not sure how the heck you get within 50-75 yards from a place you know a deer is bedded and hang a stand without him seeing or hearing you..Seems crazy to me..

It is a little crazy. ;) You need to give yourself plenty of time to set up, and go real slow, especially the last 100 yards or so. Also, keep in mind you may not have to go real high, just high enough to shoot over the brush. In fact, if you go too high he may see you climbing up the tree. Another option is to build a groud blind way ahead of the season, prefferably out of natural materials.
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Re: Bedding question..please help

Unread postby DEERSLAYER » Fri Jul 02, 2010 7:30 am

cornfedkiller wrote:Thanks makes sense..Im still not sure how the heck you get within 50-75 yards from a place you know a deer is bedded and hang a stand without him seeing or hearing you..Seems crazy to me..


You may not be able to get that close depending on the cover. You just get as close as possible and do it quietly. If you are not used to having to be this quiet I recommend you practice. Especially if you are using a hang on and steps. This will not only help you in being quiet, but it will also let you know how long it will take to set up. When I started doing this I found it took me an additional half hour. That time differential cost me a nice buck once. I was one minute to late getting set up because I didn't realize it would take me so long while trying to be super quite.
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Re: Bedding question..please help

Unread postby dan » Fri Jul 02, 2010 9:07 am

Great answers Squirrel and Slayer 8-)

So if you hunt one bed, see nothing, then cant hunt again for a week or two, and pick a different bed to hunt that evening, its entirely possible that the buck is now using the first bed you hunted??


Yes.. It is possible, but if it did not rain your scent will be lingering around that area for up to a week, maybe more. More likely that he is in one of the other bedding areas. So, I only hunt each bedding area about 1 to 3 times a year unless I am hunting a specific buck and have reason to believe he is back in the same bedding area.
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Re: Bedding question..please help

Unread postby dreaming bucks » Fri Jul 02, 2010 9:19 am

Dan...

Human scent can remain in an area for a week ? :shock:

Has there been studys on this ? Holy crap, I had no idea our scent could hang around that long, that just seems crazy to me, but I believe it....

No wonder the big boys are so smart....
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Re: Bedding question..please help

Unread postby dan » Fri Jul 02, 2010 9:29 am

Tracking dogs have been able to track humans several days after they have passed thru and still be able to track the right person when many have crossed the same trails... I watched an investigation and man hunt for a serial killer where they used a bloodhound to track the culprit down a busy sidewalk 3 days after he was there just by give the dog a whiff of a coke (soda) can the man held while drinking it....
How long exactly that your scent remains but can't actually be tracked is still somewhat of a mystery and depends somewhat on weather... But rain free, I am sure a whitetail that can smell better than a bloodhound can pick up enough odor to know you were there.
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Re: Bedding question..please help

Unread postby dan » Fri Jul 02, 2010 9:43 am

Just did some research...

According to anecdotal information, identifiable human scent usually disappears from an environment after 24 hours.
But human scent can persist for much longer than one day. In 2003, the FBI hosted a bloodhound research workshop that
included a test to evaluate the feasibility of detecting aged human scent in a heavily populated residential area.
Researchers selected a test subject who had lived in a Stafford, Virginia house for seven years before moving to
Albuquerque, New Mexico. Six months after the subject had moved to New Mexico, researchers placed a bloodhound
team at a Stafford intersection several houses away from the old residence. After sniffing a letter that the subject had
mailed from New Mexico, the dog trailed to and identified the correct house. In this study, the distinctive scent traces
withstood the deteriorating effects of weather. But scent can survive conditions much more extreme than weather.

Bombers and arsonists often use a time-delay device, which allows them to depart safely from the scene of the crime. In
2001, the FBI and Southern California Bloodhound Handlers Coalition performed a study to investigate whether human
scent can connect a bomber or arsonist with the debris left behind. The researchers prepared four pipe bombs – each with
a different type of explosive – and two containers of gasoline. Six test subjects then handled a bomb or gas can for one to
two minutes. After detonating or burning the devices, researchers collected debris – such as that shown in Figure 2 – and
transferred scents from the debris to gauze pads. They stored the pads for two to sixteen days.

On the day of the test, the bomb handlers and six decoys walked along trails in a public park. After placing 20
bloodhound teams at the start of a trail, the handlers gave their dogs sniff of a scent pad. The dogs trailed and identified
the target person in 53 of 80 bomb debris experiments and in 31 of 40 arson debris experiments with no false
identifications. The results showed that human scent can survive extreme mechanical and thermal stress.
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Re: Bedding question..please help

Unread postby dreaming bucks » Sat Jul 03, 2010 2:28 am

good stuff Dan ! It's a wonder at all that we are able to fool these animals for one second with a nose like that.... you were saying in another discussion that a deer smells better than a bloodhound, correct ? or was it the other way around, I don't remember... either way, this makes me believe even more that no matter what we do to cover up our scent, it is probably not doing as much good as we would like to think it is, but hey, a guy has got to try, right ?
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Re: Bedding question..please help

Unread postby Autumn Ninja » Sat Jul 03, 2010 3:21 am

Yes, bloodhounds have the best noses on the planet...sure am glad I don't hunt'em.


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