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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
My work buddy as been getting spotted the last couple years in his stand. He told me last year he was going to make a scarecrow and put it in his stand so the deer would get used to the sight of someone sitting in it. has anyone ever tried this? did it work? what are your thoughts?
 

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Never tried it, but it would be absolutely possible to condition deer in that way. The difference is once he starts hunting it also introduces the possibility of being scented. Sometimes what appears to be a visual bust is actually first a scent based bust.

Perhaps a better answer would be to move his stand to a tree or location that provides better coverage.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Never tried it, but it would be absolutely possible to condition deer in that way. The difference is once he starts hunting it also introduces the possibility of being scented. Sometimes what appears to be a visual bust is actually first a scent based bust.

Perhaps a better answer would be to move his stand to a tree or location that provides better coverage.
Those were my thoughts also. I expressed that to him. I am sure he has other stands on his land, but this one in particular is the only one he has trouble with. Could be he is not paying too much attention to the wind, but I am curious to see how it turns out. I know any little change spook the deer wherever I hunt, I have learned that if I bring a small pale of bait, I even have to hide that. missed a few chances because the pale threw off red flags. we live and learn, and I have a LOT to learn still.
 

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Another possibility is that when he's getting busted it could be the same adult doe or two that are busting him. There might be just a deer or two that have become wise to his approach. Only solution there is to either kill the deer that are on to him or move the stand.
 

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My work buddy as been getting spotted the last couple years in his stand. He told me last year he was going to make a scarecrow and put it in his stand so the deer would get used to the sight of someone sitting in it. has anyone ever tried this? did it work? what are your thoughts?
Never tried. Years ago there was an article in F&S or Outdoorlife about an old guy who did this. Only, every few days he would slip a jacket or shirt on his dummy so deer would get used to his scent. Seems like older deer would eventually avoid the area but who knows.

I have used articles of clothing to get deer moving in my direction once they're up on their feet. Wear extra shirts and double up on socks for the day. Before sitting in my stand I would walk around the upwind side of the woodlot hanging clothes in brush, of course my stand was on the downwind side. It only worked as the woodlot was large and thick. Anything smaller or lacking cover would blow deer out before you could make it to your stand. Too much work these days.
 

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Not really necessary.
Deer notice motion and scent. If they look up at you and you do not make eye contact or move (providing they haven't scent busted you), they will dismiss you as an odd looking tree and go about their business. This goes for adult doe, as well as bucks.
Avoiding EYE contact and any movement should be our major concerns.
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Not really necessary.
Deer notice motion and scent. If they look up at you and you do not make eye contact or move (providing they haven't scent busted you), they will dismiss you as an odd looking tree and go about their business. This goes for adult doe, as well as bucks.
Avoiding EYE contact and any movement should be our major concerns.
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Yep this. I learned very quickly that you never stare down a deer, if one looks up at you stare straight up in the sky or close your eyes
 

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Avoid eye contact? Never heard of this and I've done it many times. Do they "feel" you looking at them or something?
Odds are you have gotten busted and didn't understand why... :D
When you make eye contact, a light goes on the deer realize.... "living! predator!"
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Avoid eye contact? Never heard of this and I've done it many times. Do they "feel" you looking at them or something?
Akin to dominance in dogs.
Direct contact is a challenge for control or dominance.
When training or working with them it matters depending on what is going on.
The dog misbehaving and keeping contact will continue,barking and being told to stop for example.
When dog breaks eye contact or avoids eye contact it is submission.
They do the same with each other.

In deer, being prey, direct eye contact with a predator is a threat of being focused on as dinner.
With other deer direct eye contact in a hard stare is a challenge of dominance.
An invite to play when crouching and jumping in a fawn or a pup perhaps, but practice for later too.
Stalking behavior has a similar effect but where are eyes focused when a predator is stalking?
Those films we see with lions ect. walking around prey animals that are not panicky? Watch ther eyes.
When the predators eyes focus on you, you better beware!
When squirrel hunting they know if we are focused on them and react accordingly yet deer hunting the squirrels only get a glance and without our focusing on them they frolic about unconcerned.
That ignores the six sense theory that must also be considered, but that sense can alert to eyes focused on you before eyes are seen.
 

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Not saying there is nothing to this theory, but if there is one rule I have found over the years, it is that no rule works all the time.
Give it a try, but don't think that closing your eyes is a magic bullet.
 

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The eye contact thing is true. Try staring at your dog when he or she is laying on the floor. Sounds crazy but it will turn to look at you. Animals can definitely feel when you are looking at them somehow.
 

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Use your peripheral vision. It is like checking out a fine chick when you are out with your significant other.
 

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I read a story years ago in the Michigan Bow Hunters magazine about this.

The hunter couldn't climb into a tree stand anymore, so he built a ground blind out of natural materials near a known deer trail & made a stuffed hunter sitting in the blind.

The deer got used to the "fake" hunter over time. He then slipped into the blind, stuffed the dummy into the bottom of the blind, and was able to take a deer that season.

I have always wanted to try it, one year I will!
 

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In the mid seventies up in the U.P. I saw a blind with a plywood silhouette painted orange in it.

A former co-worker claimed a buck would be under the opposite of two stands depending on the one he was in.
Used a dummy in one and shot from the other. Could be true, could be a big fish story....
 
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