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What's on your hunting lease: How deer hunters keep track

Updated on July 15, 2012

Deer feeder placed 50yds from a main travel area

Ways to monitor your deer

Feeders, mineral beds and food plots all help wildlife with much needed supplements.This picture of a gravity feed PVC feeder was placed near deer travel area with a trail cam to get pictures of deer moving thru our lease. These work great to get pics of deer but, check your local laws before putting these out. Use these from May to Sept. to keep whitetails using these trails but, we leave them empty through hunting season. Mineral beds are left year round but wildlife only visit them during times of bone growth. Food plots help get wildlife thru tough times when food is scarce during winter months.
Use of feeders and mineral beds can help draw whitetails to areas where you can use trail cams to locate deer in your hunting areas. place these feeders near well used deer trails and load them with a combo of corn and sweet feed [horse feed it’s cheaper than deer chow]. Once deer start using these trails they will periodically wander by checking for food, hunting a nearby cross trail can be deadly.
Mineral beds attract deer from May to Sept. does need the nourishment for they’re young and bucks need this for bone an antler growth. These beds sometimes draw deer in better than food sources and many whitetails will frequent these for the much needed nutrients. This past season I had twice as many deer visiting the mineral beds, as my food plots. They will leave large holes where you put these beds, they paw the ground turning up fresh minerals as they need this nutrition. There are some whitetails that will hit these beds that you’ll never see at a food plot.

Deer will use these minerals beds for the nutrients

Mineral beds are quick and easy

You can buy deer minerals or there are a number of recipes available online which are very effective. Find a trail that is heavily used and move over 10-20yds, break the ground up in a 3-6ft circle then spread the minerals over this area and mix it together well with the soil now add some water. It will take deer a few days to locate this but it'll become a regular stop along their travel route.

For deer to have enough mineral, you should have one of these beds for every 40 acres, this not only helps the deer get the nutrients they need but also helps your bucks with antler growth. A combination of feeder and mineral bed along trails will keep the deer moving through this area all season long. Last season there was no deer that moved through our lease that we didsn't aready have pictures of and knew if it was a shooter soon as the deer came out.

Trail cams blend well with surroundings

Adding your trail cams

The picture of the trail cam to the right is placed back 30yds behind a mineral bed, this camera had 30-50 pictures of deer per week, saving many hours of scouting and letting us know how our deer are doing.

Many people believe that trail cameras spook deer but products have greatly improved, we've found that it doesn't effect them much with newer cameras. If your worried about this or have older trail cams try using a ladder and putting them high in a tree facing down they won't even know it's up there.

If you put this all together with combination of feeders,mineral beds and trail cams spreading them at different locations throughout your hunting area and you'll have pictures of all your deer and will have saved lots of time scouting. You will also know which deer you would like to get a shot at during hunting season


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    • Loreva13 profile image

      Lorenzo M Vasquez III 6 years ago from El Paso, TX

      good tips to apply for anyone who deer hunts. In your opinion would the same advice be effective for mule deer?