If you have trouble during the so-called October lull, it’s a problem that only you can solve. Here are some different strategies and techniques that you help get you out of the funk.
Find the Food:
The number 1 reason why hunters see fewer deer in early October is because of changing food sources. While you’re watching the edge of a bean field the deer are eating the apples that just started falling in the woods or the waste grain from a freshly combined field. So when you stop seeing deer, take a day to scout out a new food source that you think has potential.
Move a little:
Another reason could be that the deer simplay have your stand pegged. In this case, deer often avoid you by making even a subtle shift in their movement. Beat them at their own game by scouting out some fresh nearby tracks and move your setup to that new location.
Wait for Weather:
Yet another reason could be that warm weather in early October has winter coat clad bucks moving only at the very edge of daylight or only at night. A slight dip in temperature or misty rain can get these bucks moving during shooting hours. Watch the weather and act fast.
Try a morning hunt:
Many hunters avoid the morning because bucks tend to head back to their beds too early to catch them during shooting hours. But dawn is cooler than dusk and a warm weather buck might linger at a morning food source, making him a little late for bed.
Hit the water:
If your choices are to hunt hot weather or don’t hunt, then hunt the water. When temps are on the rise bucks are more likely to frequent a water source before feeding. A pond, creek, or rivers edge near a staging area is a good choice during these early fall heat waves.
Another option for late rising bucks is to simply get closer to the bedding area. Find a faint trail of rub line, slip along it toward the suspected lair, and set up as close as you dare. The risk is worth the reward.
Hunt like it’s the rut:
When standard tactics aren’t working, you have little to lose and a lot to gain by getting aggressive instead. A handful of does come into estrus about a month early, and the biggest bucks know it. Rattling, calling, decoying and using doe urine scent can pull in a monster during this time.