By Alex Comstock
There are a lot of different ways you can attack your hunting strategy when it comes to early season hunting. You can sit lots of observation stands, hunt food plots, water holes, try and watch a buck do the same thing multiple times before moving in on him...or you can get aggressive. Getting aggressive isn't always the best thing to do depending on your hunting situation, but if you can afford to risk getting aggressive, it could just pay off. Here's three reasons you should get aggressive if your season is already open or will be opening very soon.
1. You Can Strike When The Iron is Hot
What makes hunting mature bucks so difficult throughout most of the year is what a buck is doing today could be a lot different than what he did yesterday. This makes it hard to get a beed on them for a lack of a better phrase. Throughout a majority of October and November especially, things are constantly changing. But during early September can be one of the times when a buck might actually do the same exact thing for a few days in a row. So how can you capitalize on this? Get aggressive. If you check a trail camera and a buck has been in front of it more than once in the same time frame during legal shooting hours, move in right now. Because if you wait, your opportunity might fade away. My advice is whenever you see a buck on his feet in daylight this time of year, if similar conditions present themselves, head to where you saw him. It could just work out in your favor.
2. Bucks Shift Home Ranges
Part of why a lot of people don't want to be aggressive when hunting an early season buck is because they're afraid they'll screw it up for the rest of the year. But when it comes down to it, mature bucks (most of them) will be shifting home ranges within a couple weeks of shedding velvet anyways. It might not be that far, and they could even stay on your property, but if you bust them now, that doesn't automatically mean you won't have a chance at them the rest of the year. Additionally, that buck that lives on your hunting property throughout the summer and into September may shift and not be seen again the rest of the year. If you don't get aggressive and make a play on him now, you may not get another chance the rest of the year.
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3. Change Your Results
If you're somebody who has been consistently tagging early season bucks, then this section probably isn't for you. But if you've struggled to put down an early season buck over the last few years, think of why. If you continue to hunt the same way, expect the same results. But if you want change, and want your results to change, maybe you need to change HOW you are hunting. So if you've been the hunter that likes things to come to them, especially early in the year, I challenge you to get aggressive this year and see if you can have different results. Don't be afraid to push in closer to a bedding area, or get on the ground and make a move if you can. Whatever getting aggressive to you is, you probably know. But this year, instead of thinking about making that move, go all for it, and see what happens.
Getting aggressive can be a risky move, no doubt about it. But the more I pay attention to others, the more I see aggressive moves pay off. The few times I have truly gotten aggressive this time of year, I've also seen increased levels of success in the form of having better mature buck encounters. So the next time you have an opportunity, go for it and make that aggressive move.