By Ryan Miloshewski
It sure feels good to be back!
After a year-long hiatus due to not being able to hunt, I am back and ready to roll with “Whitetail Weekly.” Thanks to my longtime friend, and now roommate, Caleb Phillippi, I am able to get back at it this fall. Only this time it will be in Kansas–a change for me and my Missouri roots (but one I’m extremely excited for). Caleb and I started our prep for the season months ago, and I will share what we’ve been doing to help guide you in preparing for the six month battle ahead.
Right now the strategy is fairly simple–scout, scout, and scout. Place as many trail cameras as you have in areas where deer will travel on your property. Put down some attractant (Big and J is great). Corn is also effective, or you can start/refresh a mineral lick (Campbell Girl’s Deer Sauce is my choice) in front of the cameras and take inventory of the bucks in your area. Remember, you do not have to check the cameras weekly! In fact, I encourage you to check them every 2-3 weeks at this point. When you get closer to the season in early September, check them weekly–but carefully, with scent elimination in mind.
If you can, go out to your property in the evenings and glass deer. They are coming out well before dark now and it is a good way to take inventory, along with trail cameras. You can see what food source the deer are hitting, and see their travel routes to and from the food. If you’re lucky, they’ll be hitting the same food source once the season opens–and taking the same routes.
Now is also the final time to trim shooting lanes, hang or move stands, and prepare for fall food plots. It is crunch time. And don’t forget to shoot your bow! One strategy I use this time of year is taking one shot a night after work. Walk out to your target, choose a distance, and take one shot. It simulates a hunting scenario fairly accurately. We are a little over a month away from archery season in Kansas and Missouri. Hallelujah!
Here’s a list of hunting seasons opening soon in Kansas and Missouri:
Snipe 09/01-12/16 Dove 09/01-11/29
Dove 09/01-11/29 Teal 09/10-09/25
Deer (Archery) 09/12-12/31 Archery Deer and Turkey 09/15-11/11 & 11/23-01/15/17
Deer (Muzzleloader) 09/12-09/25 Snipe 09/01-12/16
Links to both state’s websites:
-A buck’s antlers can grow up to 2 inches a day in the summer. They are the fastest growing tissue among all species on earth. It’s so incredible, in fact, deer velvet extract is sometimes used as a healing supplement (looking at you Ray Lewis) in humans.
-Deer will soon begin the transition between their summer coats and winter coats. Summer coats are reddish-tan in color while winter coats, which are thicker and more hollow, are brown and gray in color. The process, similar to molting in birds, only takes a few days. It is regulated by hormones and the photoperiod. Once the days start to get shorter, hormones are released that control the transition.
-Hen turkeys usually lay 12-15 eggs in late spring. By the time late summer rolls around, the number of poults averages between 3-5 per hen.
-Watch out for wasps, hornets and various stinging insects in your feeders, barns, or stands while scouting right now. Carry a can of insect killer with you–just in case.
-When dove hunting, be sure to bring plenty of shotgun shells. If you miss on the first shot, most doves will dip and dive with their flight movements until they reach cover, making it extremely difficult to hit them.
Quote of the Week: “The only reason I ever played golf in the first place was so I could afford to hunt and fish.”–Sam Snead, legendary PGA tour member