The much-anticipated archery deer hunting season in local WMU’s 2B, 5C and 5D. gets underway Sept. 17.
It’s a perfect time to be afield and woodlands as the weather is warm, deer are still in their summer feeding habits, and haven’t been chased according to Brian Malone, Vice President of Pradco Outdoor Brands that includes companies such as Moultrie feeders, Summit tree stands, Knight & Hale Game Calls, Whitetail Institute and others.
Malone who was born in Pennsylvania and has been a bowhunter for 28 years and has bow hunted in several states, says some hunters prefer to pursue bucks right out of the gate while others hope to arrow a doe first to put some venison in the freezer. But for him, he likes to target mature bucks in the early season for the following reasons:
*Bucks are in a summer pattern so you have a better chance of seeing them in daylight.
*Fewer people hunt the early archery season so you don’t have as much competition interfering in your hunt.
*Bucks aren’t as spooky or pressured because they haven’t been hunted for months.
*There’s even a chance you’ll have an opportunity to shoot a buck that’s in late velvet.
His next suggestion is to hunt the food. Hunt the early-season food sources that include corn, soybeans or hay fields, and you’ll find deer. If those options aren’t around, Malone says to search for soft mast crops like apples, crabapples or berries.
And with the early bow season almost upon us, the Tree Stand Safety Awareness Foundation (TSSA) has proclaimed September as Tree Stand Safety Awareness Month. As such, they remind hunters about tree stand safety as every season some hunters fall or slip out of their tree stands and get injured and in some cases, die from their fall.
The organization points out that falls occur due to loss of grip, loss of balance or a slip. They contend that hunters should maintain at least three points of contact be it two feet and one hand, or two hands and one foot.
Their primary call to safety is if you don’t have a full-body harness, DON’T CLIMB, but hunt from the ground, perhaps in a ground blind.
PENNSYLVANIA GAME COMMISSION REMINDS HUNTERS OF CWD
The PGC reminds hunters about regulations that prohibit the movement of high-risk carcass parts from deer, elk and other cervids to control and prevent the spread of Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD). These regulations impact hunters going out of state this fall or those hunting within a Disease Management Area (DMA) and CWD areas in Pennsylvania.
As such, hunters are prohibited from importing parts of materials from high-risk cervids taken in any state or country outside Pennsylvania. The high-risk parts include the head, lymph nodes, spinal cord/backbone, spleen, skull plate with attached antlers, cape, unfinished taxidermy mounts and brain-tanned hides.
To date, the PGC says CWD has been found in about 1,000 deer, but has not been detected in Pennsylvania’s elk herd.
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Nick Hromiak has been an outdoors and automotive writer for over 30 years. He's been published in numerous national and state-wide outdoor magazines and newspapers.