Question - Deer and Cattle

Discussion in 'Bucks and Does' started by gpb1111, Nov 6, 2007.

  1. I have several questions about your experiences hunting deer on cattle farms. My father and I have been hunting some new property in the hills around Lancaster. It is all cattle land but has many sections of woods, meadows, creeks, hollows, brush, and treelines. We have been out 6 times this year and have only seen 4 deer. :S Do deer stay far away from cattle and cattle territory? I see very few rubs and only 1 active scrape. Should I just pack my things up and go back to public land. Anyones experience would help. Lastly, I have heard that deer hunting on windy days is a bad idea from several people. Does anyone have some light to "shed" on this?
  2. One of my spots is actually a cattle pasture in the middle of the thickest briars you'll ever see in your life. I really don't think it matters. Always see deer out grazing right with the cattle. They don't seem to bother each other too much

  3. Fish4Food

    Fish4Food Built Ford Tough

    One of the farms I hunt gets cattle after the first of November. During the month of October the deer really like to use a thick creek bottom dividing the pasture fields. After the cattle move in and are also in the creek bottom, the deer do not use it as much. I believe this is contributed to the cattle constantly moving through and making noise, and making the deer uneasy. Also a note to mention, we have watched calves chase deer out of the pasture field.

    I prefer not to hunt on windy days but still do. One reason for this is personal preference, I like to be able to hear when I am in the woods. Deer do also seem to be more skidish, and less active, maybe due to the same reason.
  4. triton175

    triton175 STX 206 Viper

    I have always believed that deer are less active on windy days because they use their sense of smell so heavily. High winds make it harder for them to smell things, so they stay put unless they have to move.

    Don't know about cattle.

  5. deer do not mind cattle - hunted a cattle farm for 15 years in Muskingum County and the deer are thick. You won't see them grazing in the fields with them or anything:D but they will not shy away from travel routes and beding areas due to cattle being on the property. I have watched deer many times feeding on acorns when cattle have come through the area - the deer typically just stand still and watch the cattle. They will continue feeding on acorns like nothing happened. I have also seen a deer spook from cattle tromping into the area like something jumped them up, but the deer only usually run a short distance and stop. (I always step in a cow pattie when hunting the cattle farm and rub the bottom of my boots through the grass with it - great cover)

    I like hunting in the wind personally and have taken a few good deer doing so.
    I like to still hunt, but I will sit a stand for several hours in the wind if I feel good about it. Now I don't hunt in high wind (like 25 mph), but I don't hesitate at all to hunt in adverse conditions as I have seen many good deer while doing so.
  6. Bassnpro1

    Bassnpro1 OSU outdoorsman

    Windy days normally subdue deer movement and push deer into open areas. Deer can't smell, can't hear, and all the movement(ie leaves falling everywhere) make them real nervous in hardwoods. On windy days it is my experience that deer especially mature bucks bed down in open areas(grassy fields, open fence rows etc.)

    Windy days are the best for a spot and stalk if you can glass a buck bedded in a field or fence row.
  7. Lundy

    Lundy Staff Member

    The farm I hunt is a working cattle farm with bunches of cattle.

    The deer will not vacate an area due to cattle but I have observed modifications in travel areas. The deer will typically not walk through a group of cattle but will skirt the outsides of groups. I have seen deer feeding in the same fields as the cattle but not in close proximity.

    Where I hunt I pretty much know how the deer are going to travel from area to area on the farm based upon where the cattle are any given day.
  8. Thanks for all the feedback. I guess I will have to be presistant. I tried hunting on Tuesday during the wind and saw nothing. Next time I will probably stay home and wait for a better day. Lundy, how do you know where the deer will be depending on where the cattle are? Do you assume that if the cattle are in one section of the woods that the deer will not be in the same section?
  9. Lundy

    Lundy Staff Member

    The area I hunt is around 1000 acres or which 600+ of that is pasture with pieces of woods and brush in 5 to 100 acres sections.

    This pasture is extremely green in the fall and has lots of clover. The owner does rotational grazing and moves the cattle to new sections or pasture every few days. The new growth that occurs on the recently grazed pasture in very attractive to the deer within days of the cows moving.

    If the cows are in a pasture that the deer would normally travel to get from one wooded section to another the deer will adjust their travel path to get from point A to B. They do not like walking through a bunch of cows. If I have one of my houses(gun hunting) setup to watch a ditch creek drainage leading from point A to B and the cattle are all over it I'll hunt somewhere else because I know that the deer will shy away from that route.

    Never say never however. I've watched bucks during the rut walk right through the middle of 100 cows without any concern at all. There is no hard and fast rule, it will vary by area, cover, number of cattle, are the deer used to cattle, etc. What I see where I hunt may be very different where you hunt.