Flatland elevation bedding

Discuss the science of figuring out our prey through good detective work.
mainebowhunter
500 Club
Posts: 3448
Joined: Fri Jan 15, 2016 10:45 am
Status: Offline

Flatland elevation bedding

Unread postby mainebowhunter » Mon Feb 29, 2016 11:28 am

I know some guys had some questions on some flat land bedding. Thought I would share this. Today, scouted another piece of property. Man was it super wet. I think the swamp/swamp is pretty full since its spring time and the water is high. Most of my scouting is usually looking for food sources, looking for bedding and scouting all the transition lines. Basically, all weekend Is scouted transitions. Whether it was swamp to softwood transistions, alder to softwood transitions....most of my scouting, that is where I spend most of my time. Especially on new ground. You can see a lot of the transitions on google earth.

So here is a bed and the "elevation" is only about 18". Sure enough, there was a bed on it. This photo kind of shows the elevation change. Bed is right on the end.
Image

At first, the bed really meant nothing to me. Its not a spot I can really hunt because of the access. No idea of the travel direction. So I continued to scout all the transition lines. Directly opposite of that bed, on the opposite side of the water, saw probably 8-10 rubs and a run headed in the softwood.
Image

The rubs were on the opposite side of this water. Guessing its lower in the fall.
Image

Now this gives a direction to the bed. I can access this spot, 80 yds from the bed and hunt it if I thought there was a buck using that bed on a regular basis. The rubs looked old so who knows.

Really just wanted to post a bed for the flat land / swamp / woods guys. There is no agriculture where I live. Deer are headed for the apples. What is interesting is, I did jump probably 10 deer in here and they all headed right back to where I just came from with these rubs.

I was hunting a buck in here last year. Came into 5yds one night but it was just too dark. Just got on this ground in 2015 so really did not do any hard core scouting until after the season. Really looking for the beds this buck was using when he was feeding on the apples.

Flat land / woods bedding is very subtle. Its pretty easy to miss. You really have to be looking for the elevation changes to see it. The leaves look flattened and the white belly hair is the dead give away.


User avatar
DeerDylan
500 Club
Posts: 1491
Joined: Sat Dec 27, 2014 6:17 am
Location: North East
Status: Offline

Re: Flatland elevation bedding

Unread postby DeerDylan » Mon Feb 29, 2016 12:19 pm

Nice MB. I found one in a flat thicket today. Probably a two foot rise. I'll post it in my journal tomorrow.

[ Post made via iPhone ] Image
fishlips
500 Club
Posts: 1279
Joined: Fri Mar 25, 2011 5:32 am
Location: South Central WI
Status: Offline

Re: Flatland elevation bedding

Unread postby fishlips » Mon Feb 29, 2016 1:43 pm

Good post. I hunt some terrain similar to this. I have definitely struggled figuring it out but its fun terrain.

curious what types of food are you looking for in spots like that?

[ Post made via Android ] Image
KLEMZ
Posts: 1498
Joined: Wed Jan 26, 2011 2:28 am
Location: SE Wisconsin
Status: Offline

Re: Flatland elevation bedding

Unread postby KLEMZ » Mon Feb 29, 2016 2:46 pm

Good post maine. Now that you know where that bed is, is there any clue via aerials/topos or is it strictly boot leather to find beds in that terrain? I ask this because a lot of my northern Wisconsin hunting ground is essentially flat big woods.
mainebowhunter
500 Club
Posts: 3448
Joined: Fri Jan 15, 2016 10:45 am
Status: Offline

Re: Flatland elevation bedding

Unread postby mainebowhunter » Tue Mar 01, 2016 12:20 am

As far as a food source,
KLEMZ wrote:Good post maine. Now that you know where that bed is, is there any clue via aerials/topos or is it strictly boot leather to find beds in that terrain? I ask this because a lot of my northern Wisconsin hunting ground is essentially flat big woods.


If I am scouting bigger woods, you can see the transition lines in google photos. If you look at the attached shot, you can see the difference in the trees. When the bushes look really short, typically that is alders or some sort of swap, marshy wet area. I spend most of my time walking all of the transition lines.
Image

Personally, when I am looking at big flat woods, I always want to see some sort of terrain change. Big pieces of flat woods with nothing but hardwoods with no thick stuff or no type of edge, I do not spend a lot of time scouting. Most spots around here, at some point have been cutover and the cutovers will stop at a property line, again, creating another edge.

I am also looking for food sources. Mainly, apple trees. They are really a big part of the way that I hunt here. It gives the deer a reason to be somewhere. They are very centralized and with no ag, they are a big draw. Yesterday, thats what I was scouting where I was. Trying to connect the links between the apple trees and bedding. As I mentioned, there was buck I was hunting last year that was showing up at the apples around .5 after dark. So I knew the direction he was coming from, now I am trying to pin down the beds he was using. The only time he really showed in daylight was a day before a huge storm. One evening I caught him earlier, but not early enough.

My next step with all my spring scouting will be to come back and check all my apple trees to see which ones are producing. Then in August, I will start hammering the apples with cameras. With gun season, we lose a lot of our mature bucks every season. I want to know if there are any 3.5+ yr olds plus using this ground.

Saturday, was scouting another softwood/thicket edge and found a nice funnel. Big gully forced the deer to go in a certain direction headed to an apple tree on the edge of a big hay field. Sure enough, found 2 big ground scrapes and some rubs headed to the apples. And the apple tree had lots of broken branches where the bucks had racked their antlers. The field is way back in on the edge of a marsh. I am going to access by bicycle with the wind at my back, than the last leg will be across the field with wind blowing into field. Its a 1.5 to get to the spot. But before anything, I need to figure out if there are any bucks using this apple tree in October OR if the apple tree is even producing this year.

This easy winter has given me a BIG jump on spring scouting.
mainebowhunter
500 Club
Posts: 3448
Joined: Fri Jan 15, 2016 10:45 am
Status: Offline

Re: Flatland elevation bedding

Unread postby mainebowhunter » Tue Mar 01, 2016 1:01 am

Very interested to hear what you guys have to say about big woods North Wisc. type terrain. I have hunted all over the midwest...but avoid big woods like the plague when I travel.
User avatar
Bubbles
Posts: 262
Joined: Sat Sep 26, 2015 1:59 am
Location: Ontario, Canada
Status: Offline

Re: Flatland elevation bedding

Unread postby Bubbles » Tue Mar 01, 2016 1:47 am

Im just a newb, but of the few swamp beds I've found, all of them are on a cedar/marsh grass or cattail edge like what you show. Thicker cedars with and open area on the downwind side.

[ Post made via Android ] Image
JTurn
Posts: 96
Joined: Tue Jan 06, 2015 1:44 am
Status: Offline

Re: Flatland elevation bedding

Unread postby JTurn » Tue Mar 01, 2016 4:28 am

I also hunt very flat land. 1 foot elevation is a "ridge" here. I find the most buck sign along edges. My best hunting stands are where 3 different type of edges come together.

[ Post made via iPad ] Image
User avatar
Stanley
Honorary Moderator
Posts: 18739
Joined: Tue Aug 09, 2011 4:18 am
Facebook: None
Location: Iowa
Status: Offline

Re: Flatland elevation bedding

Unread postby Stanley » Tue Mar 01, 2016 4:46 am

Good stuff.
You can fool some of the bucks, all of the time, and fool all of the bucks, some of the time, however you certainly can't fool all of the bucks, all of the time.
User avatar
stash59
Moderator
Posts: 9487
Joined: Thu Nov 27, 2014 8:22 am
Location: S Central Wi.
Status: Offline

Re: Flatland elevation bedding

Unread postby stash59 » Tue Mar 01, 2016 5:12 am

mainebowhunter wrote:As far as a food source,
KLEMZ wrote:Good post maine. Now that you know where that bed is, is there any clue via aerials/topos or is it strictly boot leather to find beds in that terrain? I ask this because a lot of my northern Wisconsin hunting ground is essentially flat big woods.


If I am scouting bigger woods, you can see the transition lines in google photos. If you look at the attached shot, you can see the difference in the trees. When the bushes look really short, typically that is alders or some sort of swap, marshy wet area. I spend most of my time walking all of the transition lines.
Image

Personally, when I am looking at big flat woods, I always want to see some sort of terrain change. Big pieces of flat woods with nothing but hardwoods with no thick stuff or no type of edge, I do not spend a lot of time scouting. Most spots around here, at some point have been cutover and the cutovers will stop at a property line, again, creating another edge.

I am also looking for food sources. Mainly, apple trees. They are really a big part of the way that I hunt here. It gives the deer a reason to be somewhere. They are very centralized and with no ag, they are a big draw. Yesterday, thats what I was scouting where I was. Trying to connect the links between the apple trees and bedding. As I mentioned, there was buck I was hunting last year that was showing up at the apples around .5 after dark. So I knew the direction he was coming from, now I am trying to pin down the beds he was using. The only time he really showed in daylight was a day before a huge storm. One evening I caught him earlier, but not early enough.

My next step with all my spring scouting will be to come back and check all my apple trees to see which ones are producing. Then in August, I will start hammering the apples with cameras. With gun season, we lose a lot of our mature bucks every season. I want to know if there are any 3.5+ yr olds plus using this ground.

Saturday, was scouting another softwood/thicket edge and found a nice funnel. Big gully forced the deer to go in a certain direction headed to an apple tree on the edge of a big hay field. Sure enough, found 2 big ground scrapes and some rubs headed to the apples. And the apple tree had lots of broken branches where the bucks had racked their antlers. The field is way back in on the edge of a marsh. I am going to access by bicycle with the wind at my back, than the last leg will be across the field with wind blowing into field. Its a 1.5 to get to the spot. But before anything, I need to figure out if there are any bucks using this apple tree in October OR if the apple tree is even producing this year.

This easy winter has given me a BIG jump on spring scouting.


Good stuff! Don't forget to use the time slide device on Google Earth. It's by the measuring tool and looks like a clock. Go back in time until you find a fall pic. Much more contrast shows in them. Makes it easier to find the "soft" transitions
mainebowhunter
500 Club
Posts: 3448
Joined: Fri Jan 15, 2016 10:45 am
Status: Offline

Re: Flatland elevation bedding

Unread postby mainebowhunter » Tue Mar 01, 2016 6:03 am

stash59 wrote:
mainebowhunter wrote:As far as a food source,
KLEMZ wrote:Good post maine. Now that you know where that bed is, is there any clue via aerials/topos or is it strictly boot leather to find beds in that terrain? I ask this because a lot of my northern Wisconsin hunting ground is essentially flat big woods.


If I am scouting bigger woods, you can see the transition lines in google photos. If you look at the attached shot, you can see the difference in the trees. When the bushes look really short, typically that is alders or some sort of swap, marshy wet area. I spend most of my time walking all of the transition lines.
Image

Personally, when I am looking at big flat woods, I always want to see some sort of terrain change. Big pieces of flat woods with nothing but hardwoods with no thick stuff or no type of edge, I do not spend a lot of time scouting. Most spots around here, at some point have been cutover and the cutovers will stop at a property line, again, creating another edge.

I am also looking for food sources. Mainly, apple trees. They are really a big part of the way that I hunt here. It gives the deer a reason to be somewhere. They are very centralized and with no ag, they are a big draw. Yesterday, thats what I was scouting where I was. Trying to connect the links between the apple trees and bedding. As I mentioned, there was buck I was hunting last year that was showing up at the apples around .5 after dark. So I knew the direction he was coming from, now I am trying to pin down the beds he was using. The only time he really showed in daylight was a day before a huge storm. One evening I caught him earlier, but not early enough.

My next step with all my spring scouting will be to come back and check all my apple trees to see which ones are producing. Then in August, I will start hammering the apples with cameras. With gun season, we lose a lot of our mature bucks every season. I want to know if there are any 3.5+ yr olds plus using this ground.

Saturday, was scouting another softwood/thicket edge and found a nice funnel. Big gully forced the deer to go in a certain direction headed to an apple tree on the edge of a big hay field. Sure enough, found 2 big ground scrapes and some rubs headed to the apples. And the apple tree had lots of broken branches where the bucks had racked their antlers. The field is way back in on the edge of a marsh. I am going to access by bicycle with the wind at my back, than the last leg will be across the field with wind blowing into field. Its a 1.5 to get to the spot. But before anything, I need to figure out if there are any bucks using this apple tree in October OR if the apple tree is even producing this year.

This easy winter has given me a BIG jump on spring scouting.


Good stuff! Don't forget to use the time slide device on Google Earth. It's by the measuring tool and looks like a clock. Go back in time until you find a fall pic. Much more contrast shows in them. Makes it easier to find the "soft" transitions


Satellites don't make it up this way that often lol. Have to go back almost 10yrs!
Hooks1
Posts: 313
Joined: Sat Sep 07, 2013 7:15 am
Location: Central Louisiana
Status: Offline

Re: Flatland elevation bedding

Unread postby Hooks1 » Tue Mar 01, 2016 9:03 am

JTurn wrote:I also hunt very flat land. 1 foot elevation is a "ridge" here. I find the most buck sign along edges. My best hunting stands are where 3 different type of edges come together.

[ Post made via iPad ] Image




Same here in th southern swamp lands that I hunt.
User avatar
Bigburner
Posts: 2006
Joined: Thu Jan 09, 2014 6:41 am
Location: Delaware?
Status: Offline

Re: Flatland elevation bedding

Unread postby Bigburner » Tue Mar 01, 2016 9:11 am

Hooks1 wrote:
JTurn wrote:I also hunt very flat land. 1 foot elevation is a "ridge" here. I find the most buck sign along edges. My best hunting stands are where 3 different type of edges come together.

[ Post made via iPad ] Image




Same here in th southern swamp lands that I hunt.

X's 3
Montani Semper Liberi
Instagram @formationoutdoors
mainebowhunter
500 Club
Posts: 3448
Joined: Fri Jan 15, 2016 10:45 am
Status: Offline

Re: Flatland elevation bedding

Unread postby mainebowhunter » Tue Mar 01, 2016 11:14 am

Hooks1 wrote:
JTurn wrote:I also hunt very flat land. 1 foot elevation is a "ridge" here. I find the most buck sign along edges. My best hunting stands are where 3 different type of edges come together.

[ Post made via iPad ] Image




Same here in th southern swamp lands that I hunt.


Hooks, I felt like I was in LA when I scouting. Exactly the thought that went through my head. It was so wet in one section...the further in, the wetter it got. Was jumping from hummock to hummock to try to avoid losing my boots. Finally, I just gave in and walked through it. Much of it was still kind of icy so I did not sink all that much.

Reminded me of what I use to see on the Primos videos when Will would hunt around where he lived.
mainebowhunter
500 Club
Posts: 3448
Joined: Fri Jan 15, 2016 10:45 am
Status: Offline

Re: Flatland elevation bedding

Unread postby mainebowhunter » Tue Mar 01, 2016 5:27 pm

What is interesting about this area also is the fact that the transition line where the rubs are is also an elevation change onto a bigger piece of dry land. Bordered on one side by a pole line with some cattails. If I had to take a guess, the buck chased a bit last year was crossing this pole line AND possibly, from the beds I found, bedding next to a bush right on the pole line. I may end up doing some in season observation hunts on this pole line to see how these deer are using it/crossing it.

At this point, its just a waiting game till the summer when I find out what apple trees are producing and what bucks are in certain areas.


  • Advertisement

Return to “Scouting”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: rhagenw and 4 guests