Why No Bucks In The Food Plot?

E. Sutton from North Caroline writes to tell me that for past two years, he sees does in his food plot, and buck sign in the woods near the food plot, but doesn’t see bucks. He asks … “Why not?”

Dr. Dave Samuel

This is a great question, and a scenario that I hear often. Here is what I think is happening. It sounds to me like you have some good bucks in the area. It is common for bucks to be seen in food plots early, then disappear in the fall. My guess is that bucks are using your food plots after dark. You are seeing scrapes and rubs, so we know bucks are there. I’d move off the food plots and find the thickest cover within 500 yards of the plot. The bucks probably bed there. So, hunt the rub lines that connect the thickest habitat with the food plots. Hopefully that will increase your chances of finding the bucks that you know are there. Watch the wind when you decide where to set up. And watch the wind relative to how you walk into your stand. Also, watch the trails as you create a way to the stands you set, so that you do not walk where the bucks are likely to walk. I hope this helps. Good luck!

Best regards,
Dr. Dave

For a fine selection of Big Game Hunting gear, click here.

Dr. Dave writes a weekly column for sportsmansguide.com. If you have a question for Dr. Dave, e-mail your question to Dr. Dave in care of Tom Kacheroski, senior editor of www.sportsmansguide.com‘s content at tkachero@sportsmansguide.com. Dr. Dave studied deer for 30 years as a wildlife management professor at West Virginia University. In addition he has been a bowhunter for over 40 years, with deer being his main prey. He’s also an outdoor writer and has been with “Bowhunter” magazine for 31 years.

Leave a Reply

Commenting Policy - We encourage open expression of your thoughts and ideas. But there are a few rules:

No abusive comments, threats, or personal attacks. Use clean language. No discussion of illegal activity. Racist, sexist, homophobic, and generally hateful comments are not tolerated. Keep comments on topic. Please don't spam.

While we reserve the right to remove or modify comments at our sole discretion, the Sportsman's Guide does not bear any responsibility for user comments. The views expressed within the comment section do not necessarily reflect or represent the views of The Sportsman's Guide.