Last week, I shared some of the work that we do (or really mainly Cody does) at the deer lease. Another part of the process is scouting. Because of the way the deer lease is set up, it’s really different for deer than it is for turkeys. It’s funny though that technology plays a roll in both these days- something we never would have imagined years ago. I talked a little bit about the role technology’s played in my life yesterday, but I never would have imagined my husband being this comfortable with it. Then again, if it’s for hunting, he’ll deal with it.
For deer at our lease, you have set stand locations. So, you can scout when you select stands sites or look at what becomes available, but after that you are really trying to figure out what might be there and what paths they are taking. Cody keeps a series of game cameras that take pictures at each of his stands. It’s really interesting to see what you will get on them.
These cameras give us a variety of information. We can see what animals are coming to the feeders, but also a lot about their patterns and behavior. It gives us a chance to age the deer which can be especially useful when actually hunting (for example, this year Cody has two nice 8-point bucks coming to one of this stands- one young, one older. He knew when he saw a deer Saturday morning that he wanted to make sure which one it was before doing anything else). For a while we had some of these on video and that was just so fun. It lets us know that these feed pens have worked so far today to keep the hogs out. It tells us that coon’s were able to jump up on the tubes from the ground after we vasolined the poles.
Cody uses his iPad to get the pictures. And if he had his druthers, I think he’d go out there everyday to see what’s out there. It’s really interesting to see what you get on these cameras.
And for those of us memory keepers, you can use these cameras to tell stories as well. I love this shot that the game camera got of my husband helping a friends grand girls over the fence. (It’s all stealthy and such.)
And I mean stealthy. I mentioned it was interesting to see what you get on these cameras and I wasn’t kidding. . . Proof I might have had him a little frustrated at me. I love this shot where he was so busted!
So turkeys, we pretty much get to hunt anywhere we want on the 10,000 acres. That’s a lot of ground to figure out where to hunt. While it’s not that unusual for us to walk several miles in one hunt, you still have to pinpoint just where you’re gonna hunt. As we’ve gotten iPhones and Lightroom added a mapping feature, we now use that combination to help us keep up with where we are seeing turkeys, or signs of turkeys.
We take pictures of those signs with our iPhones. We spend a lot of time looking for signs of turkey. This is the season that I love the most And unfortunately, here I have to wait until April as we only get a one month turkey season in the spring.
Feathers dragging in the road- AKA Tom’s strutting there stuff.
I upload them on to the computer and tag them all as turkey scouting which draws them into a smart collection. From there, I can click on the collection and then go to the map and see where all we’ve seen turkey. (Though we don’t hunt in Zavalla. . . but the map is accurate except it never seems to keep up with the clear cuts created by the timber company.) We can click on the numbers and see just what we were we’ve scouted turkeys and what we saw.
The coolest thing about scouting is just getting to see the wildlife and spending the time outdoors. There’s so much more to hunting than the actual hunt.