John's Journal...

Why, Where and How to Find Buck Deer in Funnels

Day 3: Using Weird Funnels to Help You Take Deer

Click for Larger ViewOften funnels will have two or three trails going through them. But, you want all the deer that travel through the funnel to come down one trail. Solve this problem by creating a funnel-shaped barrier across the two trails that you don't want the deer to walk down and forcing them onto the trail where you do want them to walk. Just finding a funnel doesn't insure that you'll get a shot at a bow buck. Oftentimes you have to create a funnel inside a funnel to force the deer to come into bow range. Create these funnels before the season starts to allow deer to become accustomed to walking through that 30-yard stretch of ground where you want to arrow them. Not all funnels look alike. Click for Larger ViewYou may hunt over a funnel and not realize it. For instance, at a creek crossing, you'll often find a funnel at the spot where the creek narrows, and there's shallow water. Deer on both sides of the creek will move back and forth across the creek at this same spot.

I once discovered a trail deep in the woods that went across a beaver swamp. In high water, the deer would have to walk 50- or 60-yards across open water to get from one side of the swamp to the other. Few other hunters had found this trail. To learn why the deer crossed the water at that spot in the flooded timber, I went into woods that were as dry as a tinder box in late September before deer season began in mid-October. When I reached the trail the deer used to cross the flooded timber, I discovered why they used it. An old beaver dam formed a ridge there that went across the bottom of the swamp. When the river flooded, and the swamp filled with water, you no longer could see the beaver dam now underwater. The deer on both sides of the flooded timber could walk across that beaver dam to reach either side of the woodlot. Click for Larger ViewThis beaver dam created a funnel area where most of the deer crossed the water in non-pressured times.

Low places in mountains also will create funnels as well as any other type terrain break that causes the deer to use less energy to get from one place to the other. If a bridge crosses a creek with relatively-shallow water, or the land under the bridge is above water, deer often will walk under the bridge to move from one woodlot to another, instead of going across the road or the highway.

Tomorrow: Finding Deer Hunting Success at Funnels

Check back each day this week for more about "Why, Where and How to Find Buck Deer in Funnels."

Day 1: Larry Marchinton Tells Us How to Identify Funnels That Deer Use
Day 2: Shrinking a Bottleneck to Find More Deer
Day 3: Using Weird Funnels to Help You Take Deer
Day 4: Finding Deer Hunting Success at Funnels
Day 5: Habitat Changes That Create Funnels Deer Use


Entry 583, Day 3