Wind and Deer movement

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Slider1005
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Wind and Deer movement

Unread postby Slider1005 » Wed Mar 17, 2010 8:57 am

Just wanted to start a discussion about this. I know how dan says a buck will approach his bed with the wind at his back. However at night what is their preference? Will they walk into the wind or not? Will they not care about the wind because they want to get to a specific food source? I assume they don't care to much about wind in the staging area right by their bed because they feel safe there right or wrong? I have observed deer walking many different ways with wind direction, cross wind, into wind, and with it at their backs. What do you guys think? I know some spots I need a south wind to hunt, but would they walk with it at their back to get to the fields to the north?


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Re: Wind and Deer movement

Unread postby dan » Wed Mar 17, 2010 10:21 am

Deer get more paranoid about safety in relation to wind direction as they get older.
I really think they go where they want regardless of wind direction. However, I have observed on many occasions deer not coming out of there safe zone on an unfavorable wind until after dark, but the same deer in the same bedding area leaving the safe zone an hour before dark when the wind is in his favor...
Thats why a lot of the time the best time to hunt a bedding area is when the wind is wrong for you the hunter, and right for the deer... The trick is finding a way to set up within range of the deers exit without having that wind drift over at all into the bedding area... A cross wind for example. Thats another reason I don't pre-hang stands. I hang them the day I hunt based on the exact wind that day.
Also, as far as deer movement based on wind, During the rut, you will certainly see most movement based on wind. The will cruise the Leeward side of the ridges and the downwind side of doe bedding areas... And actually, even outside the rut, bucks often use the mixing zone to travel safely on the Leeward side hills...
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Re: Wind and Deer movement

Unread postby Casper » Wed Mar 17, 2010 10:26 am

dan wrote:Thats why a lot of the time the best time to hunt a bedding area is when the wind is wrong for you the hunter, and right for the deer... The trick is finding a way to set up within range of the deers exit without having that wind drift over at all into the bedding area... A cross wind for example. Thats another reason I don't pre-hang stands. I hang them the day I hunt based on the exact wind that day.

Trying this technique often bites me in the in the hill country I hunt. There were only a few times I can remember last fall where I didn't have a wind shift during the sit.
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Re: Wind and Deer movement

Unread postby dan » Wed Mar 17, 2010 10:32 am

It has bitten me in the rear a time or two also... But pushing the limits, and taking a chance or two pays off more than playing it safe. Hill country is always tough to predict wind wise.
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Re: Wind and Deer movement

Unread postby PLB » Wed Mar 17, 2010 10:34 am

Casper wrote:
dan wrote:Thats why a lot of the time the best time to hunt a bedding area is when the wind is wrong for you the hunter, and right for the deer... The trick is finding a way to set up within range of the deers exit without having that wind drift over at all into the bedding area... A cross wind for example. Thats another reason I don't pre-hang stands. I hang them the day I hunt based on the exact wind that day.

Trying this technique often bites me in the in the hill country I hunt. There were only a few times I can remember last fall where I didn't have a wind shift during the sit.

I think outside of the rut you are better off climbing down and going somewhere else if this happens! It sucks man, I know!
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Re: Wind and Deer movement

Unread postby Casper » Wed Mar 17, 2010 10:37 am

Only so many places you can go on private land, and it happens almost every single time.
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Re: Wind and Deer movement

Unread postby stikbow26 » Wed Mar 17, 2010 11:11 am

I push it more than I should also but has anybody else noticed I seem to have more big bucks that cross wind than puttin it at there backs..
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Re: Wind and Deer movement

Unread postby Swampthing » Sat Mar 20, 2010 12:37 pm

One of my first bowhunts ,I was contending with a 15 mph south wind ,So I had my eyes glued to the North.I heard something coming upwind of me ,figured it was a lost hunter.Then out steps a nice 10 point at 45 yards,walking staight north WITH the wind.He got downwind of me stopped dead ,raised his nose into the air,kinda curled his lip. I had never practiced out to that distance so I let him walk.He wanted to go that way ,wrong wind or not
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Re: Wind and Deer movement

Unread postby PredatorTC » Sat Mar 20, 2010 1:53 pm

The buck that i shot this year was walking straight into the wind when i shot him...only i was sitting off to the side so my wind never went to him and he felt safe. It is very weird for us to see bucks like this out during daylight on this piece of highly pressured land but i believe he was because he could walk into the wind all the way to his bed.

I drew a pic to show ya what i mean but the computer wont let me put it on because it says the extension bmp is not allowed.. Whatever that means
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Re: Wind and Deer movement

Unread postby PLB » Sat Mar 20, 2010 3:42 pm

PredatorTC wrote:The buck that i shot this year was walking straight into the wind when i shot him...only i was sitting off to the side so my wind never went to him and he felt safe. It is very weird for us to see bucks like this out during daylight on this piece of highly pressured land but i believe he was because he could walk into the wind all the way to his bed.

I drew a pic to show ya what i mean but the computer wont let me put it on because it says the extension bmp is not allowed.. Whatever that means

Is this the way we need to start hunting these big bucks? I always try to set up downwind of the bedding area but man maybe I'm missing the boat here? Just seems awful risky?
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Re: Wind and Deer movement

Unread postby PLB » Sat Mar 20, 2010 3:44 pm

Hey predator, did you shoot him in the morning as we was going to his bed??
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Re: Wind and Deer movement

Unread postby Arrowbender » Mon Mar 22, 2010 4:38 am

Casper, some things to keep in mind when hunting hill country. Many evenings especially in early season, the wind will die down about the same time that the thermals start "sucking" down the hillside. These slow breezes flow like water, meaning that they don't go straight toward the bottom of the main valley but actually flow toward the nearest ravine that you're set up to. This "draw" will take your scent to the ravine in a fashion that is very predictable. (allowing a set up in which the wind is "better" for the buck, and "almost" wrong for the hunter).
Of course the strength and direction of the prevailing wind, the temperature drop of the evening and the steepness of the terrain can all be factors that will still bite you. But if played right it is something that can really help when set up correctly.
It seems that the closer it is to the rut, the more often it stays windy until after dark. But if you stay above the buck beds and the wind doesn't allow the thermals to be true, it shouldn't bite you, and it seems that the bucks stick a little tighter when it's unsettled wind any how.
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Re: Wind and Deer movement

Unread postby dan » Sun Mar 28, 2010 12:51 am

Great points Arrow... Adding to what arrow said, you can expect a downward thermal in the evening as the sun sets. During the day, you can expect an upward thermal push. A lot of my hill country set ups are on a hillside that leads to a bedding point. I want my evening thermal to pull my wind to the valley floor while the buck cruises the thermal tunnel or the top heading into the cross wind.... The main issue is that the thermal drop happens only about 30 to 45 minutes before dark and most people are already set up... So you have to predict. As the change happens, the wind will start changing directions and slowly shift to downhill... Thats the most vulnerable time for you to get winded. Predicting how that shift will occur between where its blowing during the day, to where you expect it to blow in the evening should be very helpful but it won't work all the time.
One thing that might sound a bit bizarre but definitely works is to have all your gear ready and be near your hunting area waiting till the thermal shifts a 1/2 hour before closing then quickly slip in and set up.
This works really well with bucks that don't play by the rules and like to drop straight down to the area they have been smelling below them all day. Think about it, they have been sitting there all day smelling nothing but happy smells from below, when the wind thermal shifts like it does every day he is under the belief all is safe down there.
It is very hard to get set up with a stand in time, but it can be done.
One might consider this a good technique for hunting off the ground.
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Re: Wind and Deer movement

Unread postby Arrowbender » Sun Mar 28, 2010 3:10 am

Wow Dan, that is way too aggresive for my blood. You would have to know excactly where they are bedded. In my buck neighborhood they seem to be a little less predictable. So what I like to do is get above them when the wind is in my favor, not necessarily only "thermal" power but a consistant wind. And set up above them or at least above a known "buck lair" area. I will call non-aggresively and very sporadically and wait for the wind to lay down. When the thermal starts sucking down the draw that I set up near I may get a little more frequent w/ the calling but except during rut still stay very non-aggressive. I feel confident that most bucks will come in to the set during shooting light or not at all, keeping things "fresh" for the future.
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Re: Wind and Deer movement

Unread postby PredatorTC » Sun Mar 28, 2010 5:43 am

Public Land Beast wrote:Hey predator, did you shoot him in the morning as we was going to his bed??


Yes i did.... i would say his bedding was pry about 150 yards from where i was sitting.

I took an aerial view image and drew on it to show you what i mean but i cant get it to upload for some reason....if you want i could send it in e mail


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