How Do You Hunt Squirrels – Best Hunting Tactics

Hunting & Eating Squirrels Are Both A Treat!

If you have not eaten squirrel you are missing out. Now I”m not saying it’s as good as Grouse, but it’s not bad. The meat is dark, a bit stringy, and tasty when pan fried or in the crock-pot.

Now how do you hunt for squirrels and is there one strategy better than others? Is there a method that will produce more squirrels on average or with less time spent in the woods? Yes, there is I’m going to explain to you the best way to hunt these critters.

How I Figured Out The Best Hunting Strategy For Squirrels

I started hunting squirrels at the age of 8, when my dad gave me my first gun for Christmas, a single shot 22 Lever action. With this single shot 22 rifle I learned quickly the best method for hunting Squirrels and bring home plenty for my mother to cook a meal for the entire family.

By the time I hit High School and known for my hunting success in the area (Squirrel, Deer, Pheasant, & Grouse) I was tag with the nickname Kentuck, which I guess meant the Kentucky Kid, even though I was from Michigan.

Now when it came to Squirrels I consistently out hunted my friends and just figured they were screwing off or did not really take hunting as serious as I did. But I found out later they did not really know how to hunt squirrels and I never thought about telling them my strategy.

Well after the first couple of hunting trips I discovered that the Squirrels, like any other wild animal, will hunker down when the woods is disturbed and it would take me all day with my single shot 22 to bag a few. I also discover by moving through the woods the squirrels would run to their nest, jump into a squirrel hole, or hide in one of the many crotches of the tree. So I took some time and thought, how can I hunt in a way not to spook the game. So here is the strategy I came up with and it worked like a champ!

Squirrel Signs Of The Woods

First I could hear the big Fox Squirrels Clucking so this told me where they were. Next I noticed at times I could see the leaves at the top of the tree moving, then there was the noise of something dropping from the trees, which were acorns or the shucks from those acorns. Now that I know how to find the squirrels how do we hunt them so we can take more than one before seeing them disappear?

Best Squirrel Hunting Strategy There Is

Squirrels will hunker down if you move too much or start walking through the woods looking for one to shoot. So first listen for them, once you hear one move in on him slowly and find a good place (vantage point) where you can sit and wait them out. Yes them, as if there is one there are more and they have already seen you and hunkered down, so patience is your first priority.

Now take a seat for 15 to 20 minutes and watch and listen. When you finally see your first squirrel don’t move, don’t get up, and don’t shoot, just keep watching and listening. Before you know it you will see another and then another as they get active again. Once you have 3, 4 or more squirrels working take note where they are and decide which one you’re going to take first, second, third, and so on. Base your decision on a strategy such as the furthest and most difficult one to shoot first.

Now you’re ready, but don’t go after them. I found out even with an old single shot I can take a squirrel at 50 to 60 yards, so don’t move. Shoot your first squirrel, when he drops make a mental note of where he is and take aim on the next squirrel. You see if you move the squirrels will hunker down again, but with just the loud 22 shot going off they seen to just hesitate, but then continue with what they were doing. Now take the next one and continue this until you have them all down.

I guarantee you that you will out hunt your friends that are carrying semi-auto 22s, 410s, or even a 20 gauge. So give it a try and good luck!

Guide Series Men’s Outdoor Insulated Camouflage Twill Jacket – Review

The Best Camouflage Hunting Coat For The Price

I have found the best Camo Coat/Jacket I have ever seen when it come to price. This is perfect for the entire Archery Season.

Where To Purchase This Archery Coat

I found this coat, which they call a jacket, in Gander Mountain on sale for up to 60% off. However you do not want to purchase it at the store, since you can get a better price on-line.

What Price Can You Purchase This Camo Jacket for

This Jacket in the store was on sale for up to 60% off. However, the most it ever came down to, from its regular price of $59.99, was $39.99. So I spent a year going into two different Gander Mountain Stores to see if the price would drop lower, as I wanted to purchase another one. Finally after a year I found this jacket on the Gander Mountain website for a much better deal. The Jacket was on sale for $39.99, with $10 off, and free shipping. So the total coast; $29.99 at the door.

Features

The Guide Series Men’s Outdoor Element Insulated Twill Jacket is built tough to withstand a variety of outdoor activities. Crafted from rugged 100% cotton twill fabric, the jacket boasts diamond-quilted insulation throughout with brushed tricot at the body and hood for extra warmth and taffeta at the sleeves for easy on and off.

Articulated elbows allow for a wider range of movement for even greater comfort with minimum noise. The Insulated Twill Jacket features a three-piece hood with draw-cord adjustment; a full-length front zipper; elastic-bound cuffs and bottom hem; and a license holder at the upper back. Bellowed front cargo pockets with hidden-snap flap closures, brushed tricot hand-warmer pockets (behind the cargo pockets), and an interior patch pocket provide ample storage for all your essential gear or camera. The Jacket is imported from China, so it is not USA made.

The jacket is not that heavy, is quite, and the cotton twill does not collect the burrs and tick-tacks like other materials do.

* Guide Series Men’s Outdoor Element Insulated Twill Jacket Item # 783321
* Rugged 100% cotton twill fabric
* Diamond-quilted insulation for warmth
* Brushed tricot at the body and hood
* Taffeta-lined sleeves for easy on/off
* Articulated elbows for added mobility

Product Review – 4.5 Stars*

I first purchased this jacket over a year ago. I like it so much I wanted to purchase another one for future usage and buy one for my two youngest sons, who enjoy Archery Hunting as much as I do. But I wanted to see if it would drop in price more before purchasing, since the sale sign in the stores said up to 60% off.

The Jacket is much larger then US sizes, most likely due to being made in China. I wear an Extra Large and had to go with a Large, which is still a little big on me.

Great for the Entire Archer Season, large enough to put layers of clothing under it, or to wear as is.

The zipper, if not seated completely down will separate, so make sure it seated entirely before zipping up. If it does separate it will take a few minutes to work it back down, but does not seen to damage the zipper.

The Jacket has plenty of pockets for gloves, hats, camera, etc..

I strongly recommend this coat for hunting in both the early and late Archer Season. I give it my thumbs up with a 4.5 Start rating.

Is Camouflage The Best Outfit For Archery, Maybe Not!

What Should You Wear When hunting Deer – Camouflage or Illusion Clothing

Is Camouflage Clothing the best thing to use for archery or is there something better? When most Archery Hunters prepare for the deer season the first thing that comes to mind is what camo outfit should we wear? But take a minute and think about your strategy for hunting Deer. Do we not use a number of items to give the Deer the illusion that another deer is in the area? For example; hunters will use deer calls, rattles, scents, and even decoys to attract deer into their area. These method of hunting or use of these materials are ways for creating an illusion to the deer. So why not include your hunting clothes as well?

Using Camouflage Clothing

When Archery Hunters prepare for the season one of the first things they do is to make sure they have camouflage hunting clothes that match their surroundings. Now if we look at the early archery season the woods and fields are still much alive with crops, vegetation, and leaves, so what would be better than camouflage?

Also during this time in the season the only illusion devices that work are the doe bleat and decoy. So I would agree during the first half of the Archer season camouflage material is the most effective clothing to use, however, as the season changes that will change also.

Using Clothes That Give The Deer An Illusion

Is Camouflage the best clothing to wear during the entire archery season or is there something else hunters should consider?

Well from my experience there is when the conditions are right. Yes, clothing that gives the hunter better odds for getting close to the deer. Before I mention it let’s look at two different definitions that are used in the aid of Deer Hunting; Camouflage & Illusion.

Camouflage

The condition in which the appearance of a Hunter when place against a background makes that Hunter difficult or impossible to see.

Illusion

The appearance of something that is or is likely to be wrongly perceived or interpreted by the senses of the Deer.

Camouflage versus Illusion

So which is better, to hide from the deer or to give the deer a perception. I tell you both work and have their advantages at different times of the Archery season.

When the leaves are off and you like to stalk or still hunt then the perception or illusion is the best way to go. But what outfit do you use, well I like either the buckskin outfit or a large winter coat (brown, soft, & quiet) that resembles the hide of a deer. I have found when using these outfits I attract the deer or at least get their curiosity so they come in close presenting me with an easy archery shot. These outfits also work well for deer stands, as I have had many bucks see me sitting there and yet still walk up to see what I am.

Now what do you do once Winter hits and there is snow on the ground, I stick with the illusion or brown outfits and it works well for me. However it’s your call, do you dress to become invisible (White Camo) or to create an illusion?

Early Season Bucks – Venison For The Freezer

Our first Deer Of The Season

The first buck we took this year and the only so far (Oct 14th) was a nice start to our Archery Season. Since we like Venison and make our own Hamburg, Sausage, Brats, etc. we always plan to put a nice deer (buck or doe) in the freezer as early as possible. Then we get more selective, start challenging each other, and focus on the top couple of shooters seen on our cameras. This year so far the top two have eluded us, but we still have the first and second rut to look forward to.

Crops Start To Come Off The Fields

At this time in the season the soybeans have already been taken off the fields while the corn is still standing, so as the two youngest boys took to the woods and focused on the acorns I decided to hunt the apple orchard. This young shooter was caught off guard sneaking into the Apple Orchard about 30 minutes before dark.

This young buck is a nice 8 point weighing in at 235 lbs and though it’s not a trophy or wall hanger it does provide a good amount of venison for the freezer. We will now focus on the two top shooters on the cameras and will hold off from taking a doe or young buck until the last couple of weeks left in the season.

Corns Off!

It’s a week later now and the corn has been taken off the fields, pushing the rest of the deer into the woods and swamps. So again, take a day or two off work and spend some time in the woods as this is one of the most effective times of the year for taking a nice buck. Why, for a couple of reasons; first the deer need to change their patterns for cover& food sources and second, since the rut is not in yet bucks will be traveling together. The best calling technique that works during this time is a lite rattle, like that of two bucks sparring.

Processing Your Deer

We process all our own deer using the deboning process and make our own Hamburg, Sausage, and Brats, which is very easy to do. The first deer we get always goes into chops (steaks) and Hamburg. If we shoot a second deer this will go into our Sausage, Brats, and Venison Sticks. For the Hamburg I mix equal parts of venison and 70% lean beef, then for every 10 pounds of mix burger I add one pound of bacon. I will then make 1/3 pound patties to freeze since they are great for taking right out of the freezer and grilling or frying. Then we will do one & two pound bags to be used in other dishes.

When Is The Best Time To Hunt Whitetail Deer – Pre Rut & Buck Scrapes

Archery hunters, it’s early October and the bucks have started to mark their territory, yes the bucks have begun making their Scrapes!

Crops Are Still Standing – Where Are The Deer

Right now the corn is still standing along with many of the bean fields, so your mature bucks are staying close to these feeding areas or spending the entire day in the the corn. This leaves the smaller bucks in the woods and right now are the ones making most of these early scrapes. So your best bet for taking a nice buck early is to continue to hunt the Acorns.

Now the Pre-Rut, which I say is the best Archery time spent in the woods is just a few weeks away. In the Midwest this typically starts around Oct 18, but is dependent on the weather and getting those nice cold frosty mornings. . So plan on taking a few long weekends or a few days off work from Oct -18 to Nov 15, before the deer are in full Rut.

Articles On The Rut & Pre-Rut

Take a look at a few of my other articles on Hunting The Rut & Pre-Rut. Note, the rattle and grunt work much better in the pre-rut than the rut. Why, your dominate Bucks are already on Doe(s) so they are not concerned about another buck unless he approaches. During the Pre-Rut the weather is usually nice, so be patient, stay in your stand, and wait for the big boy to come to you.

Here are a few of my articles to brush up on before the Pre-rut begins:
Hunting the Pre-Rut
Hunting the Second Rut
Early Deer Scrapes
Hunting the Buck Rubs
Early Season Bucks

Hunting Tips

If you have corn crops near your hunting area then plan on taking a day or two off right after the corn is taken off. This is when the woods will come alive with multiple Bucks and they will still be traveling together.

If you have been out in the woods for the Archery Season you will find a lot of smaller bucks. If you focus on the food sources, especially acorns, you can improve your chances.

Deer favor the White Oak Acorns over Red Oak Acorns. If you have a good acorn drop on the edge of a soybean or corn field you need to hunt there. If you do not have corps close by look for large patches of raspberries in the woods and the closes acorns.