John's Journal...

Deer Decoy Secrets of Pro Hunters

Various Ways to Use Deer Decoys

Click to enlargeEditor’s Note: In the last couple of years, deer decoys, in states where allowed, have proved themselves as very-effective deer-hunting aids, especially on the edges of agricultural fields, green fields and pastures. However, a large number of deer hunters resist carrying any more stuff into the woods than what they’ve already got, particularly with the weight involved with 3-D decoys. Let’s listen to some hunters who successfully have used deerClick to enlarge decoys and learn why they don’t hunt deer without their deer decoys.

Utilizing Only Buck Decoys with No Deer Lure:
A professional hunter who makes videos and speaks at deer-hunting seminars, Pat Reeve of Plainview, Minnesota, uses deer decoys in certain instances but only buck decoys. “I like a buck decoy when I’m hunting open areas or places where I know there’s a big buck but can’t get him to walk through a funnel,” Reeve reports. “I like to put my buck decoy in front of me so that a buck will come to it, circle downwind of it and present a shot within my bow or gun range. I’ve noticed that most of the time when the decoy is working well the bucks will be in-between me and my decoy. Then I’ve got the buck broadside to take the shot with my bow. I don’t want to put the decoy so close to me that when the buck tries to circle downwind and smell the decoy the buck’s behind me and my tree stand. Click to enlarge

“I keep my decoy as scent-free as possible. When a buck comes in and starts circling the decoy, I want him to be curious to know why he can’t smell what he’s seeing, which is what I’ve noticed bucks doing before. Then they’re puzzled. I’ve found a buck will move closer to a buck decoy when he can’t smell it than he will when he smells lure on a decoy. As the buck gets in close like this, I can usually take the shot and have had great success with this tactic.” Click to enlarge

Learning the Value of Decoys:
Mike Rex of Athens, Ohio, hunts across the United States and has taken a buck that scored more than 200 points B&C. “Several years ago, I tried deer decoys without having any positive outcomes,” Rex explains. “I was primarily using doe decoys at that time. However, when I put over-sized antlers on the decoy, the outcomes completely changed my opinion of the value of deer decoys. I’ve learned that for my style of hunting using large antlers on a small buck decoy is very effective for bagging big bucks with my bow. Changing to using a buck decoy has made a big difference in my bow-hunting tactics, just like the compound bow did to the entire sport of archery hunting.

“I believe that perhaps large antlers on a small-buck decoy invoke a threat to all the other bucks in the area. Maybe they think they’ve got to come to that decoy and see what it is. I absolutely believe that using a decoy like I’ve described can have a positive effect on taking big bucks.”

Tommorrow: Preparing a Deer Decoy

Check back each day this week for more about "Deer Decoy Secrets of Pro Hunters"

Day 1: Why Use Deer Decoys
Day 2: Various Ways to Use Deer Decoys
Day 3: Preparing a Deer Decoy
Day 4: Keeping Your Decoy Scent-Free
Day 5: Other Successful Deer Decoy Hunts


Entry 430, Day 2