Illinois Outdoors at PrairiestateOutdoors.com
RulesIllinois Outdoors at PrairiestateOutdoors.com
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Marc Anthony of Goodfield owns and operates Look Alive Taxidermy and Non Typical Hunter magazine. Anthony grew up in central Illinois and spent eight years as a commercial pilot before giving that up to spend more time with his wife Jan and three children, Victoria, Drake and Elesa. Anthony hunted on and off as a child but started seriously at age 30 and focuses on bowhunting for deer and turkeys. He's arrowed four bucks that meet the Boone and Crockett Club (net) standards and 20 Pope and Young Club qualifiers. Anthony is on the Pro Staff for Muzzy broadheads, Bear Archery, Vital Gear, Natural Predator, Non Typical Hunter and several other companies. He also is a member of the Outdoor writers Association of America, OWAA.

 

Non-typical Hunter

A Web log by Marc Anthony

Your 2010 scouting begins now

December 28, 2009 at 08:38 PM

2010 will be here in a few days and with that comes the last month for hunting here in Illinois. It may be the last month for hunting but it’s surely the beginning of your 2010 scouting! There is nothing like taking advantage of the fresh snow for finding where these sneaky little creatures live. Pressured or not, tracks in the snow don’t lie! Their behavior now will most likely mimic their early season actions in October. I absolutely love scouting or hunting in the snow.

You’ll be surprised to find where these tracks will lead you! Some of the most elusive deer will find their way in-between downed timber, in small crevices and so forth. Snow opens the door to a whole new and exciting opportunity in addition to being one of the best classrooms mother nature can provide. It won’t be here for ever, so make time to scout your hunting grounds while the ground is still covered.

Snow can also be a bit deceiving. I’ve scouted with many hunters who have mistaken tracks for a “herd of deer”, when in fact it was only one deer making the path. Whitetails, being repetitious in feeding this time of year, can beat down a path over the same area while traveling to and from their favorite food source. Take your time and look at the size, how recent each track was left and which direction the hooves were pointed. Each track tells a story!  Last but not least, keep your eyes opened for shed antlers! Finding sheds in an area will identify a favorite route used by that buck. If its a mature buck, he may be worth tracking in the future.

So grab your boots and get to work! You may even be able to ambush a late season whitetail while scouting.

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