Discussion: Can you kill a mature buck off a midnight picture

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hunter10
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Discussion: Can you kill a mature buck off a midnight picture

Unread postby hunter10 » Fri Oct 11, 2019 1:16 am

We all get those middle of the night monster buck pictures and rarely kill them. For those of you who have, what tactics lead to it. Most will say “ he’s not living in the area” but if you have access to vast amounts of public or hundreds of acres of private he’s likely in there somewhere. Who’s to say he’s not just taking his rounds through the land and not getting to your camera until late? You could throw bed sits and hope to run into him etc. What do you think will put you or has put that buck in your truck. I’m talking during the season when it’s oct 10th and he just showed up on camera last night at 1am. Now what’s the game plan? How do you do it without burning out the area etc. Any stories to go along with the discussion would be cool
Last edited by hunter10 on Fri Oct 11, 2019 1:24 am, edited 1 time in total.


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Re: Discussion: Can you kill a mature buck off a midnight picture

Unread postby Marshbuster89 » Fri Oct 11, 2019 1:21 am

I think the main thing that helps is winter/spring/summer scouting. Knowing and learning where the biggest bucks live and how they use the area is critical. Even glassing or shining during season can help give you an idea of potentially where he most likely came from based on where he is and what time you saw him.
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Re: Discussion: Can you kill a mature buck off a midnight picture

Unread postby EllieTheChubb » Fri Oct 11, 2019 2:04 am

I didnt kill him last year but took a shot at a mature buck I was getting pics of on a scrape at night.
He would only come in to the scrape from one direction and on one wind. I used that info along with google earth to figure out where he was. It all worked perfectly until I whiffed the shot!
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seazofcheeze
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Re: Discussion: Can you kill a mature buck off a midnight picture

Unread postby seazofcheeze » Fri Oct 11, 2019 2:21 am

Marshbuster89 wrote:I think the main thing that helps is winter/spring/summer scouting. Knowing and learning where the biggest bucks live and how they use the area is critical. Even glassing or shining during season can help give you an idea of potentially where he most likely came from based on where he is and what time you saw him.


This. You have to already know the best bedding and ideally you already know when it is being used and where your kill tree is.

I had a spot in Michigan where I would get a good buck or two on cam a few times a week around 1-4 a.m. The bedding area was only a few hundred yards from that camera. So, dont discount that he is close, but dont discount he is far away either.

Previous knowledge of the area and hot sign are your best bets.
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Re: Discussion: Can you kill a mature buck off a midnight picture

Unread postby johndeere506 » Fri Oct 11, 2019 2:39 am

seazofcheeze wrote:
Marshbuster89 wrote:I think the main thing that helps is winter/spring/summer scouting. Knowing and learning where the biggest bucks live and how they use the area is critical. Even glassing or shining during season can help give you an idea of potentially where he most likely came from based on where he is and what time you saw him.


This. You have to already know the best bedding and ideally you already know when it is being used and where your kill tree is.

I had a spot in Michigan where I would get a good buck or two on cam a few times a week around 1-4 a.m. The bedding area was only a few hundred yards from that camera. So, dont discount that he is close, but dont discount he is far away either.

Previous knowledge of the area and hot sign are your best bets.


I agree with this 100%. Ive seen the same. The close bucks I know the weather, wind direction or dates that gets them up early, the far ones will only show in daylight if a doe brings them in, or a couple times I killed the first mature target buck, and within 5-7 days the far away buck had moved in and stayed. The beds are similar every year so I only scout them in Feb/March.
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Re: Discussion: Can you kill a mature buck off a midnight picture

Unread postby Hawthorne » Fri Oct 11, 2019 2:56 am

Interesting topic. Historical data would help know where he shows up at a certain time of year during daylight
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Re: Discussion: Can you kill a mature buck off a midnight picture

Unread postby Lu Rome » Fri Oct 11, 2019 3:36 am

With those types of bucks, there are 2 ways that it typically happens. Either wait until the rut and hope that he moves through there in daylight. If it's a field edge pic, this is less likely IMO. However if it's a travel corridor, you have a chance since you're in his normal range. The other option is like mentioned, use the intel from that pic to figure out where to start looking and track him down to where you can get a shot at him in daylight.

I had 2 opportunities at a buck in option 1 a few years back as it was a narrow public site. Neither opportunity resulted in killing him. My camera intel over the years would echo that same tactic. I've gotten a ton of good buck pics all at night early in the season and then a handful during the rut during daylight. Their timing of activity changes, but they do use those areas they've been using all fall.

I've used option 2 a number of times to get to the general area of where I need to be to have opportunities at bucks. Generally find them on the food source or travel to food and work back toward daylight.
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Re: Discussion: Can you kill a mature buck off a midnight picture

Unread postby hunter10 » Fri Oct 11, 2019 4:24 am

seazofcheeze wrote:
Marshbuster89 wrote:I think the main thing that helps is winter/spring/summer scouting. Knowing and learning where the biggest bucks live and how they use the area is critical. Even glassing or shining during season can help give you an idea of potentially where he most likely came from based on where he is and what time you saw him.


This. You have to already know the best bedding and ideally you already know when it is being used and where your kill tree is.

I had a spot in Michigan where I would get a good buck or two on cam a few times a week around 1-4 a.m. The bedding area was only a few hundred yards from that camera. So, dont discount that he is close, but dont discount he is far away either.

Previous knowledge of the area and hot sign are your best bets.

I have also had this happen. A good buck on a food source at nights was one thing but when he is there at 1am at a camera located not far from bedding, most would assume he’s going somewhere else. He may very well be using that bedding area nearby but still has a couple more fields or ridges go run around on before first light
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Re: Discussion: Can you kill a mature buck off a midnight picture

Unread postby KRoss480 » Fri Oct 11, 2019 4:29 am

Kinda the deal I had with this deer. I got very few pics of him in October and they were always during the middle of the night. I scouted around and could never quite pin point exactly where he was staying. I knew of a good bedding area prob about 3/4 of a mile away, and knew my best chance at killing that deer was along that bedding area during the rut. So I did the only thing I could do and waited.

Image

Well as luck would have it, I moved to the edge of that bedding area when the time came right and killed that buck my 2nd morning back there. He ended up scoring 155” and probably would have not killed him if I didn’t know where that bedding area was from previous years knowledge/scouting.

Image

Image
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Re: Discussion: Can you kill a mature buck off a midnight picture

Unread postby Paca » Fri Oct 11, 2019 5:34 am

Of course u can it’s hunting, pictures don’t tell the whole story
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Re: Discussion: Can you kill a mature buck off a midnight picture

Unread postby jwangle13 » Fri Oct 11, 2019 8:36 am

Just had the same thing happen to me last night. He know the camera is there and turn and went the other way. Going to put some boots on the ground this season to see if I can figure out where he is.
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Re: Discussion: Can you kill a mature buck off a midnight picture

Unread postby Stingray713 » Fri Oct 11, 2019 12:41 pm

Every year I get pictures of big deer in a small food plot behind my house. During the Summer and early Fall the pictures are usually 11pm-4am.

I thought most of these deer must be living pretty far away in the daylight, and some are. But once the crops are picked and the acorns are all eaten, the pictures get closer to sunset/sunrise.

Most of the deer and the biggest of the bucks bed about 300 yds away from the food plot, they just don’t make it their main food source until other stuff is all gone.
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Re: Discussion: Can you kill a mature buck off a midnight picture

Unread postby Rich M » Fri Oct 11, 2019 12:52 pm

I was hunting SC - wood strip on the edge of a field with a power line easement at the back.

Had a cam pic of a nice 8 pt - every tine was about 8 inches, including the brows - maybe 18 inches inside. Would be my biggest. Anyway, cam said he was there 2 nights ago at 10. I sit the following morning, doe comes running thru a bunch of whips and then I see the whips behind her moving, he comes out and is dogging her - I'm watching him thru the scope. Watched him til he hit the woods. Just never occurred to me to shoot until he hit the woods. Less than 100 yards. LOL! Good memory.

He was on cam 2 nights in a row - the first one I saw and then the night before I saw him. Never seen him again on or off cam.
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Re: Discussion: Can you kill a mature buck off a midnight picture

Unread postby Hawthorne » Fri Oct 11, 2019 12:56 pm

I shot a 143” 12 point I had a middle of the night pic of nov1. First time I ever had a pic or knew about him. 2 days later I shot him in the evening nov3. It was luck ,wasn’t expecting to see him. I moved in on a smaller 8 point I saw that morning go into a bedding area. Got him about 200 yds from where I had the cam
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Re: Discussion: Can you kill a mature buck off a midnight picture

Unread postby Stingray713 » Fri Oct 11, 2019 1:07 pm

I’ve had a bachelor group of nice bucks show up all summer together on one farm, then around this time of October I’ll get pictures of one or two of the (still big but not the biggest) bucks on a farm a mile down the road.

Seems like the pecking order starts to sort itself out around this time and bucks relocate some of the time
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