John's Journal...


Make a Brush Funnel

EDITOR’S NOTE: Often deer will walk along the edge of a hardwood point that juts out into flooded timber, agricultural fields, thick-cover bedding sites or pine plantations. You’ll find funneling deer easy in any place where two different types of terrain like these converge. Usually Click to enlargehardwood peninsulas will be too wide to bring the buck in for a close shot. But you can shrink the size of these peninsulas and force deer to come to you.

“I search for a fallen tree on one edge that lies toward the middle of a peninsula,” Dr. Bob Sheppard of Tuscaloosa, Alabama, an avid deer hunter who spends about 50-60 days each season in the woods, explains. “Although the deer easily can hop over the tree, they’ll generally walk around it. Often I place my tree stand close to the top of the fallen tree. Then when deer walk up the edge the tree has fallen on, they’ll funnel around the tree. To increase my odds for taking a buck, I walk to the outer edge on the other side of the peninsula and cut brush to build a small brush fence 2-½- feet high. I Click to enlargepile-up limbs and saplings from the edge toward the fallen tree to create this brush fence. If you spot the brush fence, it may not look like a fence to you. Although deer easily can hop over the brush fence, they usually don’t because of their laziness. Rather than going over it, the deer simply walk around it and come into my range.”

Sheppard will visit the sites he wants to hunt before deer season arrives. He checks to see if the peninsulas have deer trails running through them. He builds his brush fences and sets up his tree stands. By the time the season Click to enlargecomes in, all his human odor will have dissipated. The deer will have adapted to funneling through the 30-yard wide or so opening between the fallen tree and the brush fence. When Sheppard hunts one of these regions, the deer will walk on both sides of the hardwood peninsula from both directions to funnel under his tree stand. You can use this same principle if you pinpoint a natural bottleneck and want to funnel the deer closer to your tree stand,” Sheppard reports. “You don’t have to spend a lot of time building a brush fence. In a few minutes, you can pick up limbs and sticks and build a 5- to 10-yard-long brush fence. Always build a meandering fence rather than a straight one. Then other hunters will walk by without noticing the funnel you’ve created.”


Check back each day this week for more about FORCE THE BUCK TO COME TO YOU

Day 1: Block Trails and Build Invisible Trails
Day 2: Make a Brush Funnel
Day 3: Cause a Buck to Come Out of Thick Cover
Day 4: Cut a Path
Day 5: Build a Honey Hole



Entry 332, Day 2