Speed scouting

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Speed scouting

Unread postby Moose » Wed Jan 22, 2020 10:44 am

Just watched farmland bedding and saw dan talk about speed scouting around all edge. So with snow on the ground i figured it would be a perfect time to go. I walked where trees meet the soybean field and when i ran across tracks i would go in about 10-20 yards and i found some doe beds. Some of the tracks just kept going through the timber. I found rubs off an on and followed tracks but no beds. Tons of big blow downs of multiple trees that i thought looked good but nothing. There are alot of fingers on the farm and i would call it hilly for iowa anyway. Is there something im missing? I do know when the beans are cut and corn is picked he turns cattle in there for a couple months but they have been gone since December 12th. Would cattle scare off the bucks if they only stay in the fields? Im excited to get this figured out so any ideas or thoughs would be appreciated.

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Re: Speed scouting

Unread postby <DK> » Wed Feb 05, 2020 4:54 am

I think most farm scouting is speed scouting bc there is only so much habitat to break down. Unless maybe its a thick block woodlot which needs grid searched for back cover.

I would wait until summer, pre-season, early season and check again. Farm bedding is great that time of year. Id plan on glassing those beans too. If they alternate the corn and beans yearly you will need to start building intel now. If you found beds in your outing close to where corn was, then they may not be there next year if its beans in that spot. It can be repetitive but in general youre scouting for 2 seasons ahead.

Cover and habitat will have a lot to do w what you see. You didnt find beds right now, is it good habitat for cold weather? Good winds for when it snowed? Any food at all around? Super thick security cover? If you dont see any good sign from previous years to indicate good bedding then there is a reason and I keep moving on. Good luck
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Re: Speed scouting

Unread postby mauser06 » Wed Feb 05, 2020 6:50 am

Since you have snow....

Find buck tracks in the field and follow them backwards to their beds.

One thing to keep in mind though, where they are bedding now may or may not be where they are bedding in the fall. Cover has changed...food availability and food sources have changed.

I kept seeing a buck around this time of year and couldn't figure out where he was coming from. I jumped on his tracks one day where I saw him the night before. Took me right to his bed. He actually lived there that fall based on the sign and the following fall. My first hunt over that bed didn't pan out. I shot a coyote early in the hunt...the buck was bedded slightly off and was coming in right before dark. Hit the coyote blood trail and bolted.

Next hunt, he was in the bed. He came right by. 20" wide 6 point that didn't meet our antler restrictions. I knew what buck that was because I shined him in a bachelor group a month prior.
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Re: Speed scouting

Unread postby Lockdown » Wed Feb 05, 2020 7:06 am

If there are hill country type points in those draws there will be beds on them if the cover suits it. It doesn’t take much for elevation change either...

Look for a “Y” in the drainages and check that point. They seem to like those intersections that give them multiple escape routes. I see it with whitetails around home and also mulies out West.
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Re: Speed scouting

Unread postby NorthStar » Wed Feb 05, 2020 7:15 am

I am finding that I can't rely on fresh sign in the snow for the farm areas I hunt. The deer abandon these areas shortly after firearm starts. I am sure this has to do with crops, cover, and hunting pressure. I plan on going back to these farm areas shortly after the thaw to look for beds as I am not finding sign of deer using these typical farm bedding spots in the winter.
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