John's Journal...

Use Swamp Fox Tactics to Bowhunt Wetland Buck Deer with Will Primos and Mark Drury

Day 2: Know the Advantages of Hunting Deer in Water

Editor’s Note: The Swamp Fox of the Revolutionary War appeared, attacked and evaporated like a ghost without leaving a trace. No one knew when or where he would strike again. He became the most-feared guerilla fighter of his time. He lived in the wetlands and swamps, and no one knew these regions better than him. To take bigger, older trophy bucks, you have to go where others won't, at a time when others won't hunt, use tactics others don't know and practice the cunning and stealth of the Swamp Fox, Francis Marion of Georgetown, South Carolina. Here's what you can learn from this Revolutionary War hero and his fight for freedom that will enable you to take more and bigger deer along the flood plains of major river systems throughout the country.

Click for Larger ViewClick for Larger ViewIf you're lucky enough to spot an older-age-class buck along a flood plain, you'll notice he seems to appear and then vanish, much like the Swamp Fox did. You'll find these bucks extremely difficult, but not impossible to hunt. If you understand how water, mosquitoes and the fear of the unknown offered protection to the Swamp Fox and his men more than 200-years ago, during the Revolutionary War, you can see how deer use water to vanish from hunters today.

In high school and later in college at the University of West Alabama in Livingston, Ala., I hunted several days a week on the 8,500-acre Tombigbee Hunting Club that included a portion of Alabama's Tombigbee River, which flooded every year and created a swamp. I learned that the biggest bucks would get their feet wet, and especially later in the season, they'd often stay wet up to their bellies. Flood-plain bucks may spend the entire deer season in the water and away from hunters during daylight hours. If you want to take these mature, hunter-savvy bucks that live in wetlands almost anywhere in the country, you'll have to employ the surprise-and-vanish tactics of the Swamp Fox, Francis Marion, to get close enough to arrow these water bucks.

Click for Larger ViewClick for Larger ViewMost bowhunters consider hunting in wetlands a hassle and don't like to don waders, drag canoes and possibly get their feet wet to harvest bucks. But if you get out of your comfort zones and hunt flood plains, you’ll have opportunities to take wise, old bucks. Since deer pattern hunters much-more effectively than hunters pattern deer, a trophy buck knows:

* hunters usually hunt where they've always hunted;
* hunters will leave scent trails and make noise going to and from their stands,
* hunters generally won't hunt more than 1/4-mile away from access roads;
* hunters won't hunt in the water; and
* water offers food, sanctuary and the safest place a mature buck can live during hunting season's daylight hours. Using this knowledge that bucks have, you can bag these wise swamp bucks.

To get John E. Phillips’ Kindle books “PhD Whitetails: How to Hunt and Take the Smartest Deer on Any Property” and "How to Hunt Deer Up Close: With Bows, Rifles, Muzzleloaders and Crossbows”, click on them, or go to, type in the name of the book, and download it to your Kindle, and/or download a Kindle app for your iPad, SmartPhone or computer.
Tomorrow: Know the Advantages of Hunting Deer in Water

About the Author

John Phillips, winner of the 2012 Homer Circle Fishing Award for outstanding fishing writer by the American Sportfishing Association (ASA) and the Professional Outdoor Media Association (POMA), the 2008 Crossbow Communicator of the year and the 2007 Legendary Communicator chosen for induction into the National Fresh Water Hall of Fame, is a freelance writer (over 6,000 magazine articles for about 100 magazines and several thousand newspaper columns published), magazine editor, photographer for print media as well as industry catalogues (over 25,000 photos published), lecturer, outdoor consultant, marketing consultant, book author and daily internet content provider with an overview of the outdoors. Click here for more information and a list of all the books available from John E. Phillips.

Tomorrow: Learn Water Tactics to Take More Deer with Will Primos and Mark Drury

Check back each day this week for more about "Use Swamp Fox Tactics to Bowhunt Wetland Buck Deer with Will Primos and Mark Drury"

Day 1: The Techniques of the Swamp Fox During the Revolutionary War Will Help You Take Buck Deer
Day 2: Know the Advantages of Hunting Deer in Water
Day 3: Learn Water Tactics to Take More Deer with Will Primos and Mark Drury
Day 4: Hunt the High Spots above the Water Line and Scrapes in Water to Take More Deer
Day 5: How to Choose Your Equipment for Hunting Water Deer

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Entry 735, Day 2