Decoying Bucks From the Ground

This private land bowhunter decided to leave the trees and try stalking bucks while hiding behind a doe decoy. It worked!

Decoying Bucks From the Ground

Danny Farris with one of his many mature bucks taken while using the Stalker Doe Decoy.

No, I’m not crazy, and yes, I know most bowhunters take to the trees when it comes to rutting whitetails. But Danny Farris isn’t a normal bowhunter. Danny is one of those guys who likes to go against the grain. Doing this has earned him two Kansas giants (160 inch and 175 inch) in the past two years. Oh, and both were taken on public dirt.   

“I’ve been a decoy junkie for years,” Farris said. “Decoys add an element of excitement that can’t be matched. I was looking to increase my decoy success in open terrain, and further boost excitement. I decided to become the decoy. In open terrain, it works like a charm.

“I mount the Stalker Doe Decoy from Ultimate Predator Gear to my bow, grab a full-bodied 3-D buck decoy and go looking for trouble. The idea is for the buck to see the 3-D decoy first. As he’s approaching, I will reach up and flick the ear of my bow-mounted doe with my hand. In the approaching buck’s mind, he thinks the interloper has a hot doe pinned down. There just isn’t a more exciting way to hunt rutting bucks.

“This past season, my target buck was actually bedded with a hot doe in a large weed patch. I wasn’t able to use a 3-D buck, but I was able to use the bow-mounted Stalker Doe. I attached a second Stalker Doe to my cameraman’s camera and added the Stalker Antlers. The decoy’s Velcro attachments mean you can make them work on almost anything, and with me as the doe and my cameraman as the buck, we were able to get in close. Once in position, I started to grunt. When the buck stood and saw the buck/doe decoy combo, he came on a string. I shot him at 17 yards. If there’s a more effective and fun way to hunt open-country whitetails, I’ve yet to find it.”

Safety warning: Do not use any deer decoy during a firearm season, and use caution during archery-only seasons, too. Hiding and/or stalking behind a deer decoy should be attempted only on private land, and only when you know there’s no chance of encountering another hunter.

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