John's Journal...

Raising Monster White-Tailed Bucks with Hurricane Creek’s Todd Ouellette

Day 5: Todd Ouellette of Hurricane Creek Lodge Explains Why Outdoorsmen Grow Trophy Bucks

Editor's Note: More and more of today’s hunters have less time to hunt. Therefore, the dilemma of today’s hunter is, “I want to take a trophy buck that will score 150 or more on the Boone and Crocket (B&C) scoring system. However, I only have 2 to 3 weekends a year that I can hunt for that deer. I know the people who consistently take big deer spend all-year long scouting, planning, doing trail camera surveys, managing a deer herd, protecting their land from poachers and trying to keep the number of people who hunt the land that they hunt to a minimum. I just don’t have the time to do that.” This whole scenario is an oxymoron, which means a contradiction of terms. One of the characteristics of a free-enterprise system in which we live is that when there’s a problem shared by many, someone will come-up with a solution.

Click for Larger ViewIn recent years, the solution to this problem has been enclosure (high fence) hunting. Like most of you, I was totally against enclosure hunting, until I learned more about it. I discovered that high-fence hunting was a lot like golf. I don’t like golf, I don’t want to play golf, and I don’t understand why other people want to play golf. But I don’t get mad at them, if that’s what they want to do with their leisure time. One thing I’ve learned about people in the enclosure business that totally fascinates me is that they know how to raise big bucks quick. I’ve also learned that the entrepreneurial spirit of risk taking and problem solving thrives in this new industry with people like Todd Ouellette. Click for Larger ViewHe’s one of the many men and women in this industry who have been successful in raising big bucks quickly for hunters who want to take trophy bucks, but don’t have the time or the money to buy land and invest 6 to 10 years to attempt to raise and protect deer from poaching and also the over-harvesting of these trophy bucks in the wild.

I’ll be the first to admit, I love watching deer. I enjoy watching how they interact with each other, I like to look at bucks with big antlers, and I enjoy learning what they do as the rut starts. I also like to see the bucks recover after the rut and enjoy seeing the fawns being born and watching the bucks grow their antlers. I just love deer, and I love to deer hunt. I also love having a place where I can go to see the bucks I never will see in the wild. Even if you don’t choose to hunt in an enclosure, I don’t think there’s a hunter on the face of the earth, who won’t enjoy seeing 10 to 50 bucks that each will score from 200 to more than 300 points on the B&C scale. You never may see one of those deer in the wild, but at least you can say that for once in your life, you’ve seen the size of bucks from your dreams alive and on the ground.

Of course the next thought is, “Hey, I’d like to be able to watch and raise big deer on my property.” And I think this idea is one of the motivating factors for most people who build high fences. Regardless of what they do with the big bucks when they mature, there’s a satisfying feeling that comes with the knowledge that they have the skill and know how to grow and produce trophy bucks of their lifetime. Some hunters choose to do that on their private property by: plowing and planting green fields year-round; feeding supplementally; putting out minerals; placing trail cameras on trails; and limiting the number and size of bucks that can be harvested off their lands. However, there’s another group of hunters who choose not to rely strictly on trail cameras to report the size of bucks they’re able to grow, and they may erect high fences.

Click for Larger ViewI have to admit, 3-years ago I had absolutely no knowledge about enclosures, other than I knew that that was not a way I chose to hunt. But, by doing some research and being willing to learn what enclosures are about, here’s what I’ve discovered:

* we all have our own reasons for hunting;

* someone who chooses to hunt in a different way than I do isn’t a bad person and certainly isn’t doing anything that’s morally or legally wrong;

* I can’t deny a person the opportunity to take a buck of a lifetime, just because I don’t choose the same method to take my buck of a lifetime that he or she chooses;

* I may not have the property to hunt that has the potential to grow a trophy buck, where the buck has the right genetics, the proper amount of food and/or the amount of protection to reach that 4- to 6-year-old age group that enables him to express his genetic potential, so that I can see a large number of bucks bigger than any bucks I’ve ever seen. So, why should I be mad at a person who hunts a high-fence area where the money and time have been spent to offer that kind of hunting opportunity.

Click for Larger ViewLet’s face it – we all like to see big deer. We all wish we could see monster deer on the places we hunt, but the cold hard fact is that they don’t exist where we hunt. But, they do exist behind high fences, and more and more people are experimenting with enclosures. I wanted to know how much land was required for a quality high-fence operation, how many deer a landowner should purchase if he built an enclosure, and who would be the key person or people he should consult with to grow big bucks year after year after year. Watch the video to see how Ouellette answered when I asked him how much land and how many deer did someone have to have to create an enclosure to begin to raise trophy bucks.

If you’d like to learn more about Hurricane Creek Lodge’s deer, visit, or call 256-366-7910 or 256-710-8811.

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Check back each day this week for more about "Raising Monster White-Tailed Bucks with Hurricane Creek’s Todd Ouellette"

Day 1: Using Trophy Stock to Improve Your Deer Herd with Hurricane Creek’s Todd Ouellette
Day 2: Hurricane Creek’s Todd Ouellette Explains What the Facts Are for Growing Trophy Bucks
Day 3: Trophy Bucks Breed More Trophy Bucks with Todd Ouellette of Hurricane Creek
Day 4: Hurricane Creek’s Todd Ouellette Tells Why to Have Enclosure Whitetail Hunts
Day 5: Todd Ouellette of Hurricane Creek Lodge Explains Why Outdoorsmen Grow Trophy Bucks


Entry 570, Day 5