The archery-only season for whitetail deer throughout Texas opens Saturday Oct. 1.
Tens of thousands of bowhunters will take to the field to get within 30 yards (yes, some further) of an extremely wary game animal and there is one key that is often overlooked: the “now’ acorns. While feeders dispensing corn are the common method of luring in deer here, they are often fruitless during October. The early season means warm weather and an abundance of food in most ecological regions.
The number one thing to look for is the “now” acorns.
What is a “now” acorn you ask? It is the variety the deer are feeding on right now, forsaking all other food sources.
Ever seen the corn pile up and start growing under your feeder on a deer rich lease? That is because there are other food sources available and acorns are the top candidate to cause deer to skip a carb-rich corn meal.
Get to the woods now and scout out the mast crop with the largest amount of deer sign. Finding acorns is not enough because it might be the kind deer are not hitting at the moment.
In some areas deer prefer big white oaks while at others it is red oaks or pin oaks. If you are new to the area ask veteran hunters which deer prefer in the early season and start there. Look for trails leading to the oak groves and do your best to figure out which way the deer are coming from.
Set up your stand so that all human scent blows away from the deer’s favorite item and be ready.
It might be that you skip hunting feeders altogether or if you are hunting national forest land where baiting is illegal that you push deep to find the “now” acorns.
Deer are driven by food and sex and if the rut has not kicked in your area then the “now” acorns will be the key.