Field Edge Bucks

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Field Edge Bucks

Unread postby <DK> » Tue Apr 17, 2018 6:13 am

There are a few REALLY good beds iv found over the years that are right on the edges of fields (crops or no crops). They can be facing the field or down wind but the issue is I have found they tend to exit the bed up wind. This makes getting a good approach very difficult. Most cases its early season bedding situations. They can either step right into the field or iv seen some do a j-hook type of exit. Another issue is most times I cant make a route for getting around them either. One good thing iv found about these types of situations is the wind can be consistent bc of the open area. Setups tend to be EXTREMELY tight and then getting out stealthy is even tougher than getting in.

I was wondering if anyone here has tips for bucks bedding on the edges of fields?


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Re: Field Edge Bucks

Unread postby woodworker » Tue Apr 17, 2018 6:43 am

I also had an issue similar. The only way for me to get in and out without spooking was by entering through the field 2 hours before daylight and making an exit on the edge after dark.
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Re: Field Edge Bucks

Unread postby d_rek » Tue Apr 17, 2018 6:57 am

There is a property I have hunted in Michigan's thumb for going on almost 8 years. It was the first property I deer hunted at and now I only go up there for firearms opening day to hunt with my uncle and cousins. It is a 40 acre lot with 20 acres of timber surrounding 20 acres of ag, with a 1000+ of adjacent ag fields and a small 10 acres woodlot immediately adjacent by 70 yards.

There have been many opening day mornings when we walk in to our blinds - one on every corner of that woodlot - and blow bedded deer off the corners of the woodlot. They either do one of two things - run into the interior of the woodlot (where no one hunts or goes) or bee line to the adjacent woodlot. Occasionally the hightail directly across the ag fields until they hit a ditch for fencerow.

I have smelled rutting bucks on my walk in within 30 yards of the field edge.

It is extremely difficult to sneak up on these deer! One tactic my cousin and I have figured out is usually on the 2nd day after the opener the old fellas drop out - 1 or 2 guys who only hunt the opener - we will alter our access so we don't blow deer out of our woodlot. There is a fencerow that we will sneak along and also a ditch that we have walked along too. These routes will get us pretty close to the woodlot without spooking every deer currently holed up there.

I would suggest figuring out how to you can get close to the corners/edges of the woodlot they are bedding on without getting busted. It could mean taking an unconventional access.
I have noticed deer in these areas loiter at all hours of the day/night. Waiting until mid-day to sneak in can be better than blowing them out before daylight so you can see what you're dealing with.

If the woodlot isn't bordered by fields on all sides you could try to sneak through the woods. I know the area i primarily hunt is 50/50 woodlots and ag field. I usually setup within a few hundred yards of the ag field on heavy trails and funnels that dump to bedding.
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Re: Field Edge Bucks

Unread postby Boogieman1 » Tue Apr 17, 2018 1:38 pm

Only luck I have ever had in those situations were on private ground where I knew the farmer well. Seems these bucks adapted to farm work and I used that to my advantage and got dropped off via tractor. Also had fair luck b4 bird hunters took over a honey hole where to meeting crops formed an edge. In particular case was a pretty common sense approach. They bedded under the only tree in the field and usually traveled that edge. Tucked myself in on the ground in the tall crop edge (eithier Corn or Milo) and had some awsome close encounters. Man I sure miss that place!
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Re: Field Edge Bucks

Unread postby mike perry » Tue Apr 17, 2018 4:34 pm

I hunted a buck for 3 years on some pressured private land in NE Ohio. He would bed on the edge of the field with a few other bucks in late season when it got bitter cold. They would bed there with NW NE or North wind. On very cold high pressure days they might be out in that field at noon or 3PM feeding but usually more toward evening. I had cameras around that field in the late season for several years so this is information took me several severe winters to learn. What they were doing was bedding about mid field at the high point on the north side of the field, it was very thick on that edge and I found some small sheds in those beds over the years, the access from most pressure they encountered through the season was from the farm on the west. After the fact now I know those are most likely wind specific beds. The field gradually went down in elevation about 20-25 from that mid point to the bottom. At the bottom on the east side of the field was a small feeder creek that the field drained into. That is the way they entered the field in early season on south SW and west winds, they would bed on the edge of the swamp 150 yards away on the transition watch the open woods, then head up the creek and enter the low point of the field I’m sure to take full advantage of the dropping evening thermals. They have it made on that place early and late season. The only way I could ever get them close was in late season they would feed from the top down toward that low point where the feeder creek was. I’d have to park all the way down to the edge of the property a good 1/2 mile to the south and walk straight down East where they could not see me then head north along the field edge inside the woods about 20 yards then straight in my stand on the south side of where that feeder creek and field met. Almost killed that buck twice in late season once in 2014 and 2015 got caught drawing the first time and some goose hunters shooting on a neighboring property cleared the field the other time.

It was impossible to hunt them on that field in early season, only chance I had was staying as close to that south side of where that feeder creek came into the field but it was the lowest part of the field and evening thermals almost always get you no matter the wind direction when the wind dies down in the evening. Had them over 40 yards twice but I just don’t shoot that far at deer. Some setups I’ve learned to just let go and look for something better.

There was a happy ending tho I did manage to finally kill that buck along that transition line down by the swamp along that feeder creek in mid Nov 2016.
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Re: Field Edge Bucks

Unread postby dan » Tue Apr 17, 2018 8:58 pm

that's ONE OF THE MOST COMMON FARM TYPE BEDDING SCENARIOS. Wind from wood lot into field, they walk thru the field wind to nose to a hide out on the edge spin around and watch the field while smelling to woods. Its a tough set up to beat. But once you realize they do this, its all about set up and approach. GETTIN IN ON THE SIDES OUT OF SITE, OR BEING ACROSS THE FIELD WHERE THERE HEADED. Basically you need to hunt them at the 1st vulnerable spot. This is a very good situation for an observation stand. I can tell you I have sat in many observation stands watching bucks do this day after day waiting for the pattern to get to a kill point in daylight before moving in.
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Re: Field Edge Bucks

Unread postby matt1336 » Wed Apr 18, 2018 3:44 am

dan wrote:that's ONE OF THE MOST COMMON FARM TYPE BEDDING SCENARIOS. Wind from wood lot into field, they walk thru the field wind to nose to a hide out on the edge spin around and watch the field while smelling to woods. Its a tough set up to beat. But once you realize they do this, its all about set up and approach. GETTIN IN ON THE SIDES OUT OF SITE, OR BEING ACROSS THE FIELD WHERE THERE HEADED. Basically you need to hunt them at the 1st vulnerable spot. This is a very good situation for an observation stand. I can tell you I have sat in many observation stands watching bucks do this day after day waiting for the pattern to get to a kill point in daylight before moving in.



Hey Dan- so are you gonna wait till morning on a good moon phase to move in on these bucks? The few times I’ve tried- unsuccessfully has been in the morning. The deer I was hunting had what seemed to me to be a bulletproof bed on a field edge, kinda valley situation. He could see me crest the hill on my access across the narrow field and I couldn’t get through the dogwood quiet enough to get in the backside. No trees for a stand either. He had me beat. I lost that property a while back.
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Re: Field Edge Bucks

Unread postby dan » Wed Apr 18, 2018 4:31 am

matt1336 wrote:
dan wrote:that's ONE OF THE MOST COMMON FARM TYPE BEDDING SCENARIOS. Wind from wood lot into field, they walk thru the field wind to nose to a hide out on the edge spin around and watch the field while smelling to woods. Its a tough set up to beat. But once you realize they do this, its all about set up and approach. GETTIN IN ON THE SIDES OUT OF SITE, OR BEING ACROSS THE FIELD WHERE THERE HEADED. Basically you need to hunt them at the 1st vulnerable spot. This is a very good situation for an observation stand. I can tell you I have sat in many observation stands watching bucks do this day after day waiting for the pattern to get to a kill point in daylight before moving in.



Hey Dan- so are you gonna wait till morning on a good moon phase to move in on these bucks? The few times I’ve tried- unsuccessfully has been in the morning. The deer I was hunting had what seemed to me to be a bulletproof bed on a field edge, kinda valley situation. He could see me crest the hill on my access across the narrow field and I couldn’t get through the dogwood quiet enough to get in the backside. No trees for a stand either. He had me beat. I lost that property a while back.

Andrae has been successful in that situation in the AM... I HAVE DONE BETTER IN TYHE EVENING. It works better with a narrow field in the morning where you can get directly across from the bed and shoot to wear he goes down wind to scent check before entry.
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Re: Field Edge Bucks

Unread postby matt1336 » Wed Apr 18, 2018 8:00 am

Thanks Yoda!^^^ :D
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Re: Field Edge Bucks

Unread postby <DK> » Thu Apr 19, 2018 4:23 am

Observation is something im just starting at the bottom on. I should have know it would be a great solution bc its been talked about on here. Looks like ill have to step up my game in that department.

Last season, I muddied a spot up due to checking cams pre season. Older bucks will start shedding here around mid Aug and that is when I checked the cam. Bumped him off the edge in that time frame and he then shifted to his fall patterns earlier than year prior (leaves the area).

Another spot I found tons and tons of tracks, water, food and very large beds. Rock solid mature buck setup and right under everyone's noses. The fields crops get knocked down pre season for dove hunters and they get to muddy it up first. My only sit at that spot resulted in T-storm and running to the truck. Not sure if that deer switches patterns or just plays hide and seek w bird hunters but he is old, and smart. Hoping he is alive.

One of my main spots id like to be successful in has given me lots of intel but many failed exits. This spot is tough to make decisions on but I do have a good observation spot to try. My thoughts this year are to sit on opposite side of field. I figure it has to be around prime time when the wind stops and thermals fall in my favor bc the field peaks at the center (east-west). Also it has to be far side of field for stealthy exit. I have alot of planning to here but these bucks are consistently coming from field edge bedding area - every early season.

BLUE - BEDS / WIND
YELLOW - BUCKS ROUTE
PINK - BAD SETUP / BAD WIND FLOW
RED - PRIME TIME SETUP / FALLING THERMALS
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Re: Field Edge Bucks

Unread postby <DK> » Thu Apr 19, 2018 4:27 am

So its pretty much 1 time shot at these deer bc of the timing of season and their habits. Or they bust me leaving the area. Best part about field edge hunting is extra couple minutes of shooting light. Although last time a buck busted me in this map spot it was almost too dark by time he got across the field to a kill tree...

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