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July 21, 2015 Comments (0) Bow Hunting

Expert Advice !

Sharing Trophy Bow Hunting Tips

Planning : that is the name of the game if you are going to go bow hunting for trophy deer , or any large animal.  These tips that are in this article are very good and well tested.

The success of this bow hunter is incredible.  He is very good at what he has done in both being a good shot and in setting up his hunt.

To be good like that you have to be totally dedicated to your sport and practice , practice , practice.

You have to start ahead of the season to scout things out and put your plans in place.

Very good advice and beautiful bucks …

The deer Mill: Bow expert shares trophy tips



The charismatic, legend baseball pitcher Dizzy Dean may have explained personal achievement best: “It ain’t braggin’ if you can do it.”

Bow hunter Tony Mills of Brandon could make the same claim. Mills is a deer-killing machine with archery equipment.

Mills has a regimen he always follows when bow-hunting.

Just how successful? Try this: He has taken six bucks in the past three years that green-scored between 140 and 170 inches.

Mills’ consistent harvest of mature 140-inch plus bucks is the result of a management program .

“My goal in life is to harvest the new state whitetail archery record,” Mills said. “I’ve been watching a young buck, who is now a 4-year old, who has the perfect symmetry, mass and genetics to shatter the current record.

Mills is not secretive about the techniques he uses for success.

“My tips may not help you kill the biggest deer in Mississippi, but they will help you kill the biggest deer in the woods you are hunting.”

The basics

Step 1: Mills stresses a hunter must become one with his or her equipment.

“The grip, anchor point, release operation, and sighting should be second nature,” he said.  The last thing you need to think about is the mechanics of the shot.”

A close second, Mills said, is scent control. He uses Hunters Specialties soap and spray as a first choice.

“I have a washer and dryer at camp that does only my hunting clothes,” Mills said. “I’ll shower twice a day if I feel I need to. I hang my clothes outside so they will not absorb the smell of coffee, food or anything else.

To earn an invite to hunt with Mills in his area at deer camp requires that the guest be just as serious about scent control.

Mills is adamant, and said many sportsmen make a big mistake when does and young bucks do not respond negative to the hunters’ scents. Older bucks are better able to process subtle smells .

Sound (or silence) of success

Deer vocalizations are important to Mills, who spends hours every year listening to the sounds of the woods around him.

“Volumes have been written about deer calls,” Mills said. “But in 30 years of deer hunting, I’ve only heard truly aggressive grunts a few times, and then just during the rut. I seldom grunt at all, but prefer a snort-wheeze .

“I do call very aggressively, but maybe only twice during a hunt,” he said.  When a mature deer hears one buck stand in one spot and grunt every 15 minutes for three hours, it knows something isn’t right, and avoids the area.

Location! Location! Location!

“Locate deer before the season opens,” he said. “Buck areas, also called core areas, are those places where bucks feel safest, have multiple escape routes, with food and water not too far away.

Mills said hunters may get away with bumping a buck from a core area once, maybe twice, but the buck will abandon the area if he feels he has been compromised.

For this reason Mills recommends studying topo maps to look for areas where buck groups are likely to hang .

Starting in July, he begins looking for those buck groups by personal observation and using trail cameras.

The dominate buck will scatter the inferior bucks and all things remaining the same, the core area will be his .

The following two stories show how those tips helped Mills put two of most prized bucks on the ground.

The big 8-point

Mills put his years of hunting experience to work when he settled on killing an 8-point he estimated to be 5 years old.

For 21 consecutive days, the patient Mills hunted and waited. More than once he passed on trophy bucks the likes of many hunters never see in a lifetime.

Having watched the buck for consecutive seasons before making the decision to shoot it, Tony found a pattern in its routine. Every year he would be highly visible early, only to become more reclusive as the bow season approached.

As always, stand location came into play and the one he selected had a good approach to it without spooking the buck group.

“It was Oct. 20, and the big 8-point was making his way along a trail and had approached to about 75 yards,” Mills said. “But then a doe blew at something — and the buck disappeared into the woods as a ghost might disappear into thin air.”

Mills eased down from the stand  and began planning for the next day.

“With 15 minutes of shooting light remaining the following day, the buck made his appearance, stepping silently out to the woods .

“I was in a tree closer to the trail than I liked, but it was the only choice I had. At 15 yards I drew, immediately the sight pin was over his heart. At that instant he made me. The shot was true, and the trail of blood ended within 50 yards, at the point where the 141-inch buck fell.”

The demise of ‘Half Rack’

Mills’ buck of choice, the one on which he put all his focus, during the 2013-14 season was a buck with the nickname “Half Rack.”

The buck earned his nickname the next year, when as a 4-year-old buck, it reappeared on trail cams.  when the buck broke its right main beam at the brow tine.

Fortunately for Half-Rack, and for Mills, the hunter never had an opportunity to take the buck during the 2012-13 season.

Fast forward to the 2013-14 deer season. Half Rack was back, with a full set of headgear, he was at the top of Mills’ list.

Half Rack made his way along the trail that Mills had identified as the buck’s preferred route. At 37 yards from Mills’ stand, he stepped into a kill zone.

“After I released my arrow on Half Rack and watched him disappear into the thicket .He ran about 100 yards up into a thicket, and when Kevin’s light hit the beast lying dead, I had the most amazing feeling I’ve had to date as a bow hunter .

Final touches

Remember Mills’ basic tips and then add these that led to both of those kills.

“Look for an ambush point away from an established trail leading to the core area,” Mills said. “Set the stand 30 yards away from the trail

“Know where the sun will be, what the wind direction will be

Mills hunts only in the afternoons, and he never sets up on a food plot, unless he is out taking does or cull bucks for the freezer.

“I have no way of knowing where the deer are during the night, but I have a good idea where they are during the day.

“At that point I become as statuesque as possible. Other animals will tip off a deer if they are alarmed by movement, especially turkeys and squirrels .

“I will key in on one deer,” Mills said. “I’ll let good bucks walk past because that one buck is the one I’m hunting.

Rest assured, as the Oct. 1 opening of the 2014-15 deer season approaches, Mills has already spent a lot of time in the woods and looking at trail-cam photos, watching buck groups, plotting their movements and identifying core areas.

At the time this article was written in late August, Mills has already identified a target buck .

“I am fanatical about deer hunting,” Mills said. “I have my regimen and within that routine is my comfort zone.

Article by : David Hawkins

Photo’s – Courtesy of Tony Mills

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