John's Journal...

How to Tell Where Whitetails Are and What They’re Doing with Nationally-Known Bowhunter Jerry Simmons

Middle-of-the-Day and Afternoon Spots for Deer  

Click to enlargeEditor’s Note: Click to enlargeOne of the best bowhunters I ever have met is Jerry Simmons of Jasper, Alabama, the creator of the Interceptor and Land Shark broadheads as well as numerous other hunting aids. Some years ago, in 80 days of one season of bowhunting, Simmons let arrows fly at 53 deer and harvested 43 of the whitetails. One of the primary reasons for Simmons’s success is because he finds places in the woods to put his tree stand where the deer will walk to within 18 yards or less.
Simmons, with more than 40 years of experience, spends most of his time scouting.

“The middle of the day is a good time to bag deer, and I’ve taken quite a few deer in the middle of the day,” Jerry Simmons recalls. “The kind of place I look for to hunt at this time is a thicket with some type of food tree in the middle of it or right on the edge of it. For instance, a white oak tree, which is a good food tree in my section of the country, that has numerous limbs to shade-out the ground, may be a good choice. If I can set up close to that white oak tree, I can harvest the deer when he comes in to feed. During the middle of the day if the deer are being pressured, they will generally stay in a thicket. However, they won’t lay down all day in that thicket. They’ll stand-up, move-around, get something to eat and lay down again. Since there may be five or six deer holding in a very small thicket, various deer will move, eat and lay back down at different times. This information isn’t to say that deer won’t come out into openings during the middle of the day, because they will. But I’ve discovered that I consistently bag more deer in the middle of the day hunting close to a food source in or near a thicket.”

Afternoon Area: Click to enlarge

Click to enlarge“In the afternoon, deer are more than likely to be moving toward fields and openings to feed after dark,” Simmons mentions. “Although many bowhunters will set up on the edge of a field to hunt in the afternoon, I’ve learned that if you can locate a food sources close to the field, then your chances are better of taking a deer than if you set-up on a field. If you know that deer are feeding in a soybean field at night, but you’ve also found a swamp chestnut that’s dropping its acorns about 175-yards from the soybean field, then I’ll set-up near the swamp chestnut tree to try and take the deer coming to the field. Probably the deer will move-in and feed on the swamp chestnuts for a timebefore dark and then walk on the field. Although you may think this region is a morning place, it’s not. Since the deer are already full from feeding on the soybeans all night long, in the morning they’ll walk past that swamp chestnut tree without eating when they’re heading toward their bedding area before daylight. When I’m scouting, I attempt to determine not only where the deer are feeding, and what they’re feeding on, but also when they’re eating. Then I can maximize my hunting time on that section of land and at the time of day when I’m most likely to have a shot at a deer.”

Check back each day this week for more about "How to Tell Where Whitetails Are and What They’re Doing with Nationally-Known Bowhunter Jerry Simmons"

Day 1: How to Begin Bowhunting
Day 2: What about Droppings?
Day 3: Where You Should Be to Bowhunt
Day 4: When to Hunt Deer Where
Day 5: Middle-of-the-Day and Afternoon Spots for Deer  


Entry 532, Day 5