Shed Hunting 2014

Well,  March is here and man does it sound like it's coming in with a bang.  As I am writing this post I am also listening to the weather channel about how winter storm Titian is going to hit the east coast tomorrow evening into Monday with heavy snow, maybe ice and who knows what else since long range forecasts are not so reliable these days.  I think it is anyone's guess on what we will get but the map below are the projected snow totals from 48-Hour Snow Forecast

So it's looks like we could get 8+ some are saying less, some are saying a lot more so just wait and see.   Never the less this snow has really hurt shed hunting, until this all melted the past few days sheds were buried in snow and it has been so cold or raining and so muddy no one would want to head out in the woods looking for sheds.  But with March here most or all of the deer should have shed by now and it's time to get out there looking.  I plan to start getting out this week after the snow melts and hopefully find a few sheds before they are all gone.  Shed hunting is one of my favorite things to do, it allows me to get back out in the woods, finding a shed is always exciting now matter how big or small, and it is an amazing scouting tool for next season.  This time of year, rubs, scraps, even bedding areas are very visible and it allows you to see what was going on during rut and to some point what is currently going on in terms of trails and bedding areas.

Now is also a great time of year to pick out trees, and look at travel routes in and out of your stand, granted you will have to do this again in August because once the foliage returns everything is different. But it gives you a heads up start if you can go straight to a tree in August and decide if it is still somewhere you want to hunt, if so is the tree viable for early season or must you wait until the foliage drops to hunt that area.

Knowing trees, travel patterns and knowing how get back to them from your point of entry is key and this is a great time of year to figure out all those details.  If you are hunting private property this is also a great time of year to do trimming, for shooting lanes or make new clearings.  Clearings can be hard to find and some land owners / hunters make their own to give the deer a feeding area, why do it in the hot summer heat when you can do it now and then just touch it up then!

Finally, shed hunting this time of year gives you knowledge on the deer your hunting.  Find a shed that looks like a slightly bigger version of what you saw last season, you know you have a deer living on your property.  Find a lot of little sheds or even a monster shed that you haven't seen and maybe you have new deer coming into the property and have something to look forward to next fall.  However, if your looking on public land it makes things a little harder, those deer may live there now and may be there until August and be gone before hunting season starts, I see it every year in Loch Raven.  However, it gives you an idea of where they are living and you can almost bet if they live long enough they will be back come rut, so short of someone else beating you to a big deer that you find the shed to, it's always worth going back next season.

I will of course keep everyone updated on how my shed hunting goes, (if it ever stops snowing!) and post pictures of any sheds I do find.

I would love to hear from anyone who has been out shed hunting already and found some!! Let us know what you found and share some photo's with us! For those like me who are just starting, good luck and let us know how you do!

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