Mistaking buck beds for doe

Discuss the science of figuring out our prey through good detective work.
hunter10
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Mistaking buck beds for doe

Unread postby hunter10 » Thu Dec 04, 2014 1:57 am

Watched a clip of Dan scouting and he spent some time up on a point with multiple buck beds and explained how to hunt etc and it was very informative but right off the hop i knew i would have scouted it wrong, i would of seen the few beds up there and would mark it down as doe bedding becuase of previous experience knowing doe bedding areas have multiple beds and would of hunted that spot incorrectly....

still wrapping my head around bed hunting so my question is:

Can you only really determine if those few beds on the ridge are buck due to personal buck sighting and or rub in or very close by the bedding? it was eye opening of how much i need to learn about proper bedding areas. what I found interesting is dan noted the different beds for different winds by that buck/bucks which i assume would create different shaped beds depending on the given wind that day. Again i would 100% look at the bedding and say "yep, doe bedding as the does will bed together watching different directions watching over each other/surrounding ground"

unless I can pinpoint rubs very close or in the beds how do you really know?

I scouted a piece recently and i kicked up a doe that was bedded on the leeward side of a small hill, wind blowing over its back as it watched over the ravine below. the doe was tucked into a depression with a thick tangle of brush right behind her. within 50 yds i knew of rubs. without bumping that doe i likely would of stumbled upon it and thought i found the jack pot of a buck bed.. confusing stuff or maybe im over thinking


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Trailcamaddict
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Re: Mistaking buck beds for doe

Unread postby Trailcamaddict » Thu Dec 04, 2014 3:01 am

Mature bucks leave big tracks and big poo in their beds. The beds are also larger. Sometimes there are NO RUBS but a good buck is still using the bed. I like to have a tape measure with me while am scouting to measure things. Over time you will start to see the differences. I started doing this many years ago after reading some Dr. Ken Nordberg books. It has helped me recognize the differences.
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Re: Mistaking buck beds for doe

Unread postby PK_ » Thu Dec 04, 2014 3:01 am

I hate to throw another monkey wrench in your gears, but I am seeming to find a lot of rubs in and around good doe bedding areas as well. It seems the bucks who have been through a breeding season or two start to patrol and keep tabs on the ladies bedrooms well before the rut hits.

Last weekend I crept into an area I had never hunted but I knew it was going to be good bedding, the staging area was lit up with solid fresh rubs. I setup on the ground and had about a dozen does pile out of the bedding area just before dark… Rut is still about 5-6 weeks away in that area.

This stuff is hard man, I thought it would get easier with time, but I think it gets harder for a few years before it gets easier, IF it does get any easier...
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Re: Mistaking buck beds for doe

Unread postby headgear » Thu Dec 04, 2014 3:07 am

You may have found a solid buck bed but don't get caught up in it being buck or doe only. I've seen small bucks, does and even lone fawns come out of bedding area I have seen or shot mature bucks out of. You want to focus on the buck sign because that is the most likely location a buck will bed but they aren't the only animal that could use that bed on a given day.

Things can also change in a hurry, some beds are hot one year and go cold the next. I always tell others to re-scout some of their old buck beds, you can find some very interesting results. Some of the area I hunt ended up going cold and other areas I wasn't as sure about turned out to be amazing bedding areas that were tore up year after year.
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Re: Mistaking buck beds for doe

Unread postby hunter10 » Fri Dec 05, 2014 12:51 pm

Dan if you get a chance to read this id like to hear your opinion as well. thanks guys
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Re: Mistaking buck beds for doe

Unread postby Zap » Fri Dec 05, 2014 1:01 pm

All the bachelor group beds that I have seen were close together, doe groups were spread out in a semi-circle.

Not too many lone doe beds around although there are a few, not too many of those stay solo in cold weather thou.
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Re: Mistaking buck beds for doe

Unread postby Zap » Fri Dec 05, 2014 1:03 pm

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Bachelor group beds.

This is my opinion.
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Re: Mistaking buck beds for doe

Unread postby Zap » Fri Dec 05, 2014 1:07 pm

Image

More bachelor group beds.

Again my opinion.
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Re: Mistaking buck beds for doe

Unread postby checkerfred » Fri Dec 05, 2014 3:48 pm

PalmettoKid wrote:I hate to throw another monkey wrench in your gears, but I am seeming to find a lot of rubs in and around good doe bedding areas as well. It seems the bucks who have been through a breeding season or two start to patrol and keep tabs on the ladies bedrooms well before the rut hits.

Last weekend I crept into an area I had never hunted but I knew it was going to be good bedding, the staging area was lit up with solid fresh rubs. I setup on the ground and had about a dozen does pile out of the bedding area just before dark… Rut is still about 5-6 weeks away in that area.

This stuff is hard man, I thought it would get easier with time, but I think it gets harder for a few years before it gets easier, IF it does get any easier...


That's exactly how I'm feeling now. The more I know it seems the less I know lol. It's definitely more difficult than it used to be. I just hope things will start to click.

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Re: Mistaking buck beds for doe

Unread postby MOBIGBUCKS » Tue Dec 09, 2014 5:14 am

The only sure way to know is use all of the information given. Even then you don't always get it figured out. It's tough as heck man but that is the draw.

I use tracks, rubs, droppings, and most importantly location to determine whether its buck or doe. However, I've been perched over great buck bedding and had does and fawns come through a number of times. I was just there at the wrong time.

On a side note, I've found my best buck beds from actually jumping the buck from his bed on accident. Best way to tell hands down :D
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Re: Mistaking buck beds for doe

Unread postby dan » Tue Dec 09, 2014 10:01 am

In general, does bed higher up as a group in hill country. They bed in a tight circle, even in open areas. Bucks generally have obstacles right at there back, like a tree, rock, etc. Bucks bed right where the steep elevation starts to drop off.
Lone does or pairs, often bed in buck beds if bucks are not using them cause they don't have a group to rely on.

When you look at a doe bed your often left wondering why its being used till you notice the other beds... When you find a big buck bed the 1st thing you think is this guy is smart, he has all his bases covered... Big bucks don't do anything "randomly" there are obvious reasons the bed is exactly where its at.

Keep looking at beds and you will get it eventually... Keep asking the questions "why is he bedding here, and when is he bedding here?" and you will start to put the puzzle together...
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Re: Mistaking buck beds for doe

Unread postby Crazinamatese » Tue Dec 09, 2014 3:37 pm

dan wrote:In general, does bed higher up as a group in hill country. They bed in a tight circle, even in open areas.[glow=red]Bucks generally have obstacles right at there back, like a tree[/glow], rock, etc. Bucks bed right where the steep elevation starts to drop off.
Lone does or pairs, often bed in buck beds if bucks are not using them cause they don't have a group to rely on.

When you look at a doe bed your often left wondering why its being used till you notice the other beds... When you find a big buck bed the 1st thing you think is this guy is smart, he has all his bases covered... Big bucks don't do anything "randomly" there are obvious reasons the bed is exactly where its at.

Keep looking at beds and you will get it eventually... Keep asking the questions "why is he bedding here, and when is he bedding here?" and you will start to put the puzzle together...


Dan is correct 100%. I found this bed opening morning on WI gun/deer season this year on heavy pressure public land. I suspect this was a buck bed on a lower elevation point. It looked like he didn't lay there for very long. It wasn't up on the higher elevation where I did find some doe bedding later. The buck was facing north with the down tree top behind him. The wind was blowing from the SE that morning. Also, the parking area was about 150 yards to the SE. Perfect bed for this buck as he can smell and hear the hunters parking and getting their things ready behind him as he had his eyes watching for danger to the north. The buck had some concealment to hide him from the hunter's view too.
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