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Michigan Whitetail Deer Hunting Posts about hunting the whitetail deer in MI with firearms, bows, etc.

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  #1  
Old 10-06-2011, 06:49 PM
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Default Do big bucks go to bait piles?

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Do big bucks go to bait piles?
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Old 10-06-2011, 06:55 PM
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Not usually but bait attracts does which attracts bucks. Many times the buck will be within visual range of the bait but not come right in.

Learn to hunt the runways and not the bait itself
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Old 10-06-2011, 06:58 PM
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Years ago I had a dandy buck on the trail cam on a bait pile in the middle of the night.
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Old 10-06-2011, 07:01 PM
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I agree with Rex. During the rut you may catch a buck at a bait pile but he isn't there to eat, he's after something else.

A mature buck will pick up the scent of bait being brought in and notice that it wasn't put there naturally. IMO
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Old 10-06-2011, 07:54 PM
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Originally Posted by Kingcrapp View Post
Do big bucks go to bait piles?
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Not sure what kind of answer your looking for here. Of course "some" big bucks will go to bait piles. Other big bucks may not. I know of a lot of nice bucks that were shot of bait piles. Your going to get a different answer from most people. Bait works, but it doesnt always work for the big ones.
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Old 10-06-2011, 08:17 PM
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Big bucks can be killed on bait piles but if that is what you are after your odds are better hunting staging areas or travel corridors.
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Old 10-06-2011, 08:25 PM
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Not usually but bait attracts does which attracts bucks. Many times the buck will be within visual range of the bait but not come right in.

Learn to hunt the runways and not the bait itself
Wrong!!!

Big bucks will absolutely go to bait. However, there are more than one reasons more big bucks are not killed at bait.

Number 1: a lack of big bucks. Its hard to kill big boys in most places in MI because, quite frankly, most place have very few. This is the single biggest reason why more trophies are not taken over bait. The areas that do have larger numbers of older male deer are typically ag areas and baiting is less effective because food is everywhere.

Number 2: simply throwing out bait is not highly effective. To work well, bait stations need to be maintaned so that deer know it is there. Thats why guys that live near their baited stands can keep them fresh and keep deer visiting their stand location. Also, you must do your very best to minimize scent left behind despite repeated visits. I know many many hunters that are serious about their hunting and are very sucessful with killing mature bucks while they feed at a bait station. They wear rubber and spray down before making a trip in. They walk through water to minimize scent. They do not walk around in the area looking for the sign that deer are leaving behind. If food is available to them in a manner that doesnt spoke them, "they will come". Walk out in your tennis shoes after working all day and you will be in for a lot of slow nights.

Long story short, hunters kill big bucks in KY, OH, Ont and Sas all the time while hunted baited stands. It can work just as well here if you hunt smart and are in an area with big boys.
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Old 10-06-2011, 09:20 PM
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Yes, you can kill a big buck at a bait pile...I did. He was eating carrots early in the morning on Nov. 7, 2003. Note, it was early morning during the Pre-Rut. My idea for the bait pile was to attract Does to the area which in turn would attract Bucks. I sprayed a lot of Doe Urine around the area to get the Bucks interested. I guess it worked.

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  #9  
Old 10-06-2011, 09:25 PM
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Originally Posted by davidshane View Post
Wrong!!!

Big bucks will absolutely go to bait. However, there are more than one reasons more big bucks are not killed at bait.

Number 1: a lack of big bucks. Its hard to kill big boys in most places in MI because, quite frankly, most place have very few. This is the single biggest reason why more trophies are not taken over bait. The areas that do have larger numbers of older male deer are typically ag areas and baiting is less effective because food is everywhere.

Number 2: simply throwing out bait is not highly effective. To work well, bait stations need to be maintaned so that deer know it is there. Thats why guys that live near their baited stands can keep them fresh and keep deer visiting their stand location. Also, you must do your very best to minimize scent left behind despite repeated visits. I know many many hunters that are serious about their hunting and are very sucessful with killing mature bucks while they feed at a bait station. They wear rubber and spray down before making a trip in. They walk through water to minimize scent. They do not walk around in the area looking for the sign that deer are leaving behind. If food is available to them in a manner that doesnt spoke them, "they will come". Walk out in your tennis shoes after working all day and you will be in for a lot of slow nights.

Long story short, hunters kill big bucks in KY, OH, Ont and Sas all the time while hunted baited stands. It can work just as well here if you hunt smart and are in an area with big boys.
WRONG!!

I said big bucks do not usually go into bait, not that they NEVER go to bait. This is not KY, ONT, or OH, its Michigan where the hunter density is much greater and most big bucks have had a close call or ten in their younger years. Usually in my experience in MICHIGAN bucks will circle a bait pile close enough to see if a hot doe is there, then leave. During the night they will hit bait.

Your logic makes no sense. If the poster "hunts smart and is in an area" with a nice buck, why use bait at all? Just hunt corridors if he is hunting "an area with big boys"
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Old 10-06-2011, 10:03 PM
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Yes monster bucks will and do feed at bait piles.....at night! I've got multiple pics on my trail camera of a monster 10 point on the bait pile, but only at night, in 3 years of pictures of large bucks on my bait piles i have yet to get one in the daylight. I'm not saying it doesnt happen at all just not for me, now scrub bucks is a different story.
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Old 10-06-2011, 11:05 PM
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Never.

Do big bucks go to bait piles? - Michigan Whitetail Deer Hunting
Do big bucks go to bait piles? - Michigan Whitetail Deer Hunting
Do big bucks go to bait piles? - Michigan Whitetail Deer Hunting
Do big bucks go to bait piles? - Michigan Whitetail Deer Hunting
Do big bucks go to bait piles? - Michigan Whitetail Deer Hunting
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  #12  
Old 10-06-2011, 11:31 PM
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Never.

Do big bucks go to bait piles? - Michigan Whitetail Deer Hunting
Do big bucks go to bait piles? - Michigan Whitetail Deer Hunting
Do big bucks go to bait piles? - Michigan Whitetail Deer Hunting
Do big bucks go to bait piles? - Michigan Whitetail Deer Hunting
Do big bucks go to bait piles? - Michigan Whitetail Deer Hunting
I don't think anyone is disputing that big bucks come to bait pile occasionally, but not with any consistency. Trail cam pics of bucks at night during oct. and nov. doesn't prove much. Would you like to see pics of monster bucks hitting my bird feeder?

sent from my rotory dial phone
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Do big bucks go to bait piles? - Michigan Whitetail Deer Hunting


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  #13  
Old 10-06-2011, 11:42 PM
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Originally Posted by HUBBHUNTER View Post
I don't think anyone is disputing that big bucks come to bait pile occasionally, but not with any consistency. Trail cam pics of bucks at night during oct. and nov. doesn't prove much. Would you like to see pics of monster bucks hitting my bird feeder?

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Relax. This was meant to be a bit tongue-in-cheek.
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Old 10-07-2011, 12:44 AM
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Originally Posted by charcoal300zxtt View Post
Yes monster bucks will and do feed at bait piles.....at night! I've got multiple pics on my trail camera of a monster 10 point on the bait pile, but only at night, in 3 years of pictures of large bucks on my bait piles i have yet to get one in the daylight. I'm not saying it doesnt happen at all just not for me, now scrub bucks is a different story.


In 6 or 7 years of hunting near bait piles in Wisconsin (similar hunter pressure) the 5 or 6 hunters in our party saw plenty of does and small bucks hit the bait, but the bigger bucks were never there during daylight. The big bucks were killed in transitional areas between a swamp and the doe bedding areas. When you did see bucks in the general area of a bait pile it was always at some distance, never within 50 yards of the bait. I'm not saying it couldn't happen but IME, the bucks who have lived through a few seasons seem to understand that bad things happen at bait piles and avoid them, at least during the day.
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Old 10-07-2011, 01:30 AM
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I think there are 2 BIG factors that come in to play here.

1) Are you hunting right over the bait pile? Most hunters do. This increases the chance you will bump a buck/deer off the pile in the early morning or after dark on your way out.

2) Is the bait pile in an open area, without much screening cover? If you put a bait pile in a place where mature bucks wont want to show themselves in the day time, they wont.
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