Whitetail Video: Bowhunting Blunder Saved by Deer Decoy

Mature whitetail bucks don’t often give bowhunters second chances, but his one did, thanks to a well-placed deer decoy.

Whitetail Video: Bowhunting Blunder Saved by Deer Decoy

At times, bowhunting whitetails with aid of a deer decoy almost seems unfair. Almost. 

Through the years I’ve experienced outstanding success with deer decoys, especially during the whitetail rut. At times bucks will approach a decoy — buck or doe deke — on a string, even after they have clearly smelled my ground scent, or my scent while sitting in a nearby treestand. It’s as if the buck is thinking, “Well, there must not be any real danger because this deer (decoy) isn’t on high alert.” 

As you’ll see in the YouTube video below from North 49 Outdoors, not only will a decoy help lure mature bucks into shooting range, but they can also cause a whitetail to drop its guard. I won’t spoil this video for you by explaining further.

FYI: The decoy used in the video is from Montana Decoy Company. The two-dimension collapsible buck is sold with a doe in a combo called the Dream Team (MSRP: $119.99). The buck weighs only 2 pounds, and unfolded it measures 37x48 inches. It folds to 18x20 inches. Poles are included. 

This Alberta stud doesn’t approach the buck decoy head on, which is usually the case when using a buck decoy. There’s a chance the real buck didn’t initially notice the smaller rack of the fake buck; that is, he thought it was a doe. Another possibility is the buck did see the decoy’s antlers but because they are small, he didn’t care. In other words, he’s so much bigger than the intruder that it wasn’t worth his time to posture at the deke from head on.

Regardless of how this Alberta whitetail approached the decoy, the setup clearly worked because the bowhunter is given a close-range shot opportunity — twice!

P.S. This fall I plan to field test the Trixie Whitetail Doe (MSRP: $109.99) from Montana Decoy Company. I have a couple spots in South Dakota that require a half-mile walk, with two creek crossings along the way, and carrying a 3-D decoy along with my bow and other gear on this hike is a hassle. I look forward to folding Trixie into its 13x13-inch size and stuffing it into my daypack. Will the 2-D decoy fool rutting bucks? I think so; I’ll keep you posted.

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