How do you identify deer tracks?
Deer tracks have two oblong and pointed toe prints that sit alongside each other, making the shape of an upside-down heart. You’ll see the pointed head on its forward. Depending on the region, the footprint’s size will vary.
In most instances, it will measure between 2-3 inches long when found on a relatively strong ground.
If it’s smaller, a fawn may have made them. Read on to know 7 tips on how to find footprints from deer.
How to Spot Deer Footprints
Deer footprints are elongated, the hooves are parallel on the footprint, and spear shaped. The young dear have pointed tips, while the older deer have more rounded tips. Moreover, the dewclaw are points the same direction as the hooves.
What differentiates them from hog tracks is their parallel alignment, and having dewclaws that do not point outwards.
You can compare hog tracks vs deer tracks in this article. The general difference is clear when you look at their dewclaws.
How to determine deer tracks direction
1. Food Sources
Food sources are among the best places which hunters can find deer footprint. Standing corn or beans are food that will attract deer, but you should realize that standing crops are hard to find. Other options you should consider are whole fresh crops and winter food options.
Take a look to enable you to know if the deer are eating the food. In the case they are feeding on the available food, you’ll most probably spot footprint.
2. Look at Where the Sun Is
Finding where the sun is can enable you to find footprint from deer. If there is an adequate food source nearby, deer will be frequent visitors.
You should remember that exposures that are southern facing can be among the best places to check. Knowing all the tips and tricks that expert hunters use can enable succeed in deer hunting.
3. Use a Spotting Scope or Binoculars
Once you spot a deer footprint, the next obvious thing to do is find out if the prints are fresh. If they are, the you are probably closer to your deer than you think.
At that point, it’s best to get your spotting scope or binoculars and look around. If you spot it, well, and good, it is time to take your shot or stalk it to get a better shot.
If not, then move in the general direction of the deer appears to be heading.
4. Cover More Ground
When looking for footprint from deer, you should make sure you cover more ground. The more you look around, the more chances you will have of spotting them.
If you’re finding it a challenge to walk, you can consider using a bike, UTV or ATV. Make sure you ride on the edges of agricultural fields and pastures. It will improve your chances of spotting footprints of deer.
5. Water Sources
Deer will feed on woody browse and grains at times. Because of the low moisture content of this food, they will look for water. Among the places that deer will head to are waterholes and springs.
Moreover, areas around water sources will have woody plants and other vegetation. Deer will feed on this food, meaning you can find their tracks around. During periods of extreme cold, deer will look for willow thickets and cattails to escape from the heat.
When looking for deer footprints, driving and glassing around during the winter months can help you a lot. It improves your chances of knowing where deer are.
For example, if it’s a wide-open agricultural field, you may notice some footprints in particular areas. Moreover, it enables you to narrow down your search options.
7. Avoid Areas That Deer Won’t to Wonder To
You want success when looking for hoof prints from deer, meaning you should check the right places. For instance, chisel plowed fields or open cow pastures don’t require checking. You’re better of looking at thicker bedding areas.
Hunting Deer: What to Remember
Most hunters overlook the track left behind by deer. We’re living in a fast-paced world where individuals don’t want to walk around much. Whether you’re a beginner or expert hunter, slowing down can enable you to notice the signs that deer leave behind.
Most modern hunters will look for trails, beds, rubs and scrapes when looking for deer to kill. In most instances, the most obvious clues that deer are around are ignored. Spotting deer tracks can be one sure way of getting deer to kill.
Using the above tips and equipment can enable you to put venison on the dinner table. However, you should remember that large does and small bucks can be hard to differentiate using their tracks. The big bucks are the best options to identify using footprints.