Debunking the Myth: How Wind Affects Deer Movement
As hunters, we all have our beliefs about what makes for good hunting weather. Many of us may believe that high winds make deer less likely to move. However, research conducted by a graduate student at Penn State University suggests that the opposite may be true.
According to the study, almost 90% of surveyed hunters believed that higher winds meant less deer movement. However, when the data was analyzed, it turned out that bucks actually moved more when it got windy. In fact, even a slight bit of wind showed an increase in buck movement, and as the wind kept blowing, the bucks kept moving.
Why is this the case? For one, deer rely heavily on their sense of smell to detect predators and stay safe. Wind allows them to use their noses better, which in turn makes them more active and more likely to move around.
The Benefits of Hunting in Windy Conditions
If you’re a hunter, you might be wondering how to take advantage of this knowledge. The answer is simple: don’t sit out on windy days. Instead, use the wind to your advantage by hunting when bucks are most likely to be active.
When it’s windy, bucks tend to move more during the day, and they’re more likely to be out in open areas where they can use their noses to detect danger. This means that you should look for areas that are exposed to the wind, such as ridges or high spots, where the wind is more consistent.
Of course, the wind can also be a double-edged sword. In areas where the wind is swirling or blowing in multiple directions, it can be harder to pinpoint the proper location for your hunt to avoid being blown out by a deer catching your scent. In these cases, it might be best to set up in a spot where you can see a larger area and take advantage of any movements you see in the distance.
Tips for Hunting in Windy Conditions
Here are some tips to help you make the most of windy hunting conditions:
- Find a high spot or ridge where the wind is consistent
- Look for open areas where deer are more likely to be active
- Be patient and observant – deer may move more unpredictably in high winds
- Use a wind detector to determine wind direction and adjust your strategy accordingly
- Be aware of how the wind might affect your scent, and try to position yourself accordingly
Don’t Fear Windy Days
Some hunters may be hesitant to go out on windy days, fearing that the wind will make it harder to hunt. However, as we’ve seen, windy conditions can actually be an advantage when it comes to deer movement. By using the wind to your advantage and adjusting your strategy accordingly, you can increase your chances of a successful hunt.
So the next time you see a forecast with high winds, don’t sit it out. Get out there and play that wind – you might just be surprised at the results.