I doubt you’re reading/hearing anyone say you shouldn’t be passing up bucks these days, it’s time someone did. Having fallen into the trap of passing up countless bucks over the years and seeing exactly what it’s gotten me I had enough of it and I’ll tell you why. Too many these days are lead to believe they will see nothing but 10 pointers every year if they pass up bucks now, it’s a lie. If you’ve been doing it then you know what I mean, if you haven’t then keep reading and you’ll see why it isn’t what you’ve been lead to believe.
1) Your neighbors aren’t passing them up so why are you? You’re going to tell me everyone in the neighborhood has an agreement and you all trust each other? Then why aren’t you seeing all those 10 pointers the “experts” have told you about? Why is the neighbors freezer full and yours is empty? If your neighbors are passing up bucks then all of you combined better have hundreds, if not thousands, of acres committed or you’re wasting your time. I’m going to write a post soon about this but I can tell you for a fact passing up bucks on 100 – 500+ acres is a complete waste of time. IF you live in a state/zone where antler restrictions are in place and it’s the law then you will see bigger bucks, no doubt. Anything less than a law requiring a minimum amount of points will lead you nowhere.
2) The bucks you’re passing up are 1 and 2 year olds for the most part , very very few of you/us are passing up 3 year olds. So you pass up these bucks “knowing” next year you’re going to have some nice bucks on your hunting land …….. until next year comes. That’s when you find out they AREN’T there anymore and you don’t know why. It’s simple, they travel often for years, it’s what they do. There is almost zero chance you will pass up a 2 year old and he will be back on your property next year. He may be there in the Spring and into the Summer but I’ll bet you anything he isn’t there during hunting season. Another topic I’m going to write about soon but it’s a fact. Bucks travel seasonally, annually, etc. whenever they want for the 1st 5 or 6 years of their life. You let that nice 2 year old 6pointer go and he’s living a few miles away next season when you show up looking for him. Someone else is going to be rewarded for you letting that buck go. I don’t even want to know how many bucks I’ve put on someone else’s wall because I let them go. In 2012 I let at least 14 bucks go that were 2 years old then. I have many pictures of all of them and I saw every single one during the hunting season. The next year I had 2 of them left on my property for most of the summer. The last pictures I got of those 2 bucks was August 15 and they were never seen again. I did this for YEARS , 2012 was the last year I’ll ever do it. Don’t make this mistake.
3) You can’t hunt what isn’t there. Sounds foolish right? Do you have any idea how many people are passing up bucks while having no idea what deer are actually there? There are guys passing up bucks, waiting for “the big one” and he isn’t there or he doesn’t exist. If you’re letting deer go you better know for a fact there’s one there that you’re trying to kill …. yeah I said “kill” not “harvest” like so many clowns say today. If you aren’t seeing this buck or getting pictures of him fairly regularly then you’re setting yourself up for some disappointment. You know he’s going to go on the run during the rut and he may not survive to return later in the season. We can only hunt what’s there , so do it!
4) Tired of seeing the same bucks on your property? Same bucks, same stand and none of them interest you? Kill one , kill one right now and you will start seeing different bucks. I’ve proven this for years on my property and this is one I can absolutely 100% guarantee. Don’t ask me why but deer know when “someone is missing” and they act. When a buck is removed from the herd they all seem to know it and there’s an opportunity for another buck to move in. Most of the time it’s more than one buck that shows up. Nothing is more exciting than seeing bucks show up that you didn’t even know exist. If you don’t want to spend your tag then bring someone who wants some meat, maybe a kid or whoever you know. Get rid of one and reap the rewards and soon.
5) Decades of research has proven one thing over and over again , we still can’t eat a tag. At the end of the day we’re all in it for the meat, aren’t we? Every time I throw venison on the grill I’m damn happy I killed that deer , you should be too. We hunt for a lot of reasons, mostly we just love being in the woods and watching wildlife do it’s thing. But that doesn’t mean we have to apologize for wanting the freezer full. If you aren’t filling your freezer because you’re passing up bucks then you’re cutting yourself short. Get some meat and enjoy it!
By now I’ve probably rubbed some the wrong way, too bad. Admittedly I have some pretty strong opinions about deer hunting, especially the way it’s going these days. I’m going to write a lot more about that so if this got you riled up please stay tuned. I don’t want anyone thinking I believe passing up bucks is the worst thing in the world, it isn’t. That said, no one should believe letting bucks go is going to get their name in the record books, it isn’t. It’s past time we get back to hunting , having some fun and enjoying a lot of that venison during the offseason. Fill your freezer instead of filling the neighbors every year.
As always I appreciate you stopping by. I still can’t believe the number of people who come to this blog everyday to read all my nonsense! I really do appreciate it and love hearing from readers so please write whenever you want. Take care and best of luck. mj