Shed antler hunting is a great way to scout and locate next season’s trophy bucks. If they made it through hunting season and the worst months of winter, their antlers will be the first clues. Shed antler hunting can actually be fairly easy once you break it down to the basics. With a little planning, you can really cut down on the foot work and concentrate your efforts in the best areas.
1– Start shed hunting after the deer have dropped their antlers. There is no reason to be running around the farm if the deer are still carrying their antlers. Trail Cameras are great way to verify if shedding has started. All you have to do is check the pictures for missing antlers. You can also do a little distance scouting with high power optics. Just check out a popular feeding area right before dusk and you should be able to confirm if the bucks are dropping their head gear.
2– Tip number 1 suggested scouting from a distance to verify deer movement and shedding. This method will also tell you where the deer are feeding. Make note of the most popular feeding sources and then try to determine where the deer are bedding. In late winter deer are only concerned about sleeping and eating. You can guarantee that the preferred bedding area will be close by the most popular winter food source.
3– Check out southern slopes nearby feeding areas. Deer will use these as bedding areas because of warmer sunshine. Start by leaving the fields on the most travelled trails. Look for low hanging vines and limbs that might get hung up on a antler.
4– Search for jumping and landing locations. A pasture or field fence is the perfect place to locate a shed antler. The jolt from the jump and the shock of the landing could easily cause an antler to drop. Creek crossings are also a great place for shed hunting. Search in a large radius on both sides of a fence or creek crossing. The landing may jar the antler loose but it make take a few moments for it to completely break free.
I hope shed hunting tips will give you something to think about and get you out of the house. Shed antler hunting is just like deer hunting. If you don’t get out and do it, you ain’t going to be successful.