Joseph Gleason

Author Archives: Joseph Gleason

With a dedicated respect to the environment, I understand the importance of being an informed hunter who learns as he goes. I truly recognize the value in how things were done before and how things are done today. Born and raised in upstate New York, I grew up exposed to skilled hunters who taught me the importance of what responsible hunting can provide both to myself, my family, and to the environment. I continue today to work towards refining my craft and finding new ways to practice the time honored traditions that were passed down to me from those who came before.

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How to Shoot a Compound Bow

Whether you're a wannabe archer or a veteran bow hunter, if you're going to be successful with a bow and arrow you need to know how to shoot it. One of the easiest but seemingly difficult weapons to shoot is the compound bow. There are basically six steps to follow to learn how to shoot a compound bow. Below we will go over each step in detail.

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Gun Dog Guide: How to Train Your Dog to Hunt

Dogs are always considered to be the best companions of humans. And that’s undeniable. The most common place today, for a dog, is a house where they live as a pet. But a dog is a great working animal too. Since ages, dogs have been used as an assistant in hunting big game animals and birds. Me as a hunter and many of my hunter fellows are using dogs for hunting. But any dog that you find can’t make a good hunting partner. You must know how to train your dog to hunt first.

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How To Hunt Wild Hogs In The Most Accurate Way

Planning to hunt for a big game animal? Let me help! If the purpose behind your expedition is adventure and a lot of meat, hunting a hog would serve it well. With each passing year, hog hunting is becoming more and more popular in US. A hog is the second favorite big game animal after a white tailed deer. Also known by the names like wild boar or feral pig, these are quite interesting animals to hunt. Before discussing about how to hunt wild hogs, it would be good to discuss the psychology and behavior of these wild animals.

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When do bow sights work best? (And why you need one)

Bow hunting is something to be considered as an exquisite art. The combined skills of precision and accuracy are what you need in order to be a good bow hunter. And sometimes, experienced bow hunters employ the help of a bow sight to increase the accuracy and effectiveness of their shot. However, bow sights aren’t recommended at all instances of bow hunting, so how do you know when do bow sights work best?

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How to Build a Tree Stand | Perfect Bow Hunting Experience

Planning a bow hunting trip? Do not confuse it with simple hunting method. It’s different! Bow hunting requires a particular strategy in terms of area and positioning of the hunter. Hunting in the wild requires a clearer view and a hideout where you are least likely to get detected by the bucks. As it can take hours in waiting for the target, nothing could be a better option than a tree stand. Being a novice hunter, if you don’t know how to build a tree stand for bow hunting, no worries. Here is all that you need to know about hunting from a treestand.

What Is a Tree Stand?

A tree stand promises a safe and secure corner where you can stay high above the level of the animals and wait for your target for hours. Sitting on a heighted position, you get an open, wide view of what’s happening all around. At the same time, the animal cannot detect your smell when you are sitting above its level.

Types of Tree Stands

There are many types of tree stands available in the market; portable and non-portable. Each tree stand is manufactured for a specific area and a different style of hunting. You should choose the one that is best for your hunting style. The basic types of a tree stand include;

  • A ladder stand that comes with a seat and leader. This is not a portable stand. Once the ladder and the seat is fixed, you can’t move it to some other location easily.
  • Lock on Tree stand is lighter and safer. It’s a kind of a small tree house that is set up with the help of screws in the tree. So it’s not easily removable.
  • Climber Tree stands are what I always recommend for sit-and-wait bow hunters. These can simply be tied with ratchet straps, to a tree (preferably a straight tree). Even the hunters who do not know much, can learn the process with a bit of attention. And once you are done with your hunting experience, you can carry it back, home with you.

Note: There are few states that do not allow permanent treestands or the use of nails and screws in any tree on a public land. So before you make a choice from the mobile or fixed treestand, get complete info about the state’s law. Secondly, Whatever style of tree stand you opt for, make sure that it’s approved by Treestand Manufacturers Association.

Why I Recommend a Climber Tree Stand?

All these types of tree stands can be used for bow hunting. Each of it has its good and bad points. I always used and recommended a climber tree stand. Let’s take a look at a few points that make it a better option over others.

  • Portability and mobility
  • Easy to carry on your back
  • Promises multiple hunting set ups in a day
  • Easily adjustable and takes about fifteen minutes in setting up
  • Does not terrify the animal around
  • No damaging of trees with screws or drill
  • Can simply be tied with ratchet strap

How to Set Up a Climber Tree Stand for Bow Hunting?

Before we proceed with our step by step guide about how to build a tree stand, there are a few important points that you must keep in mind.

  • Read the instructions well, given by the manufacturers
  • It’s important that you practice earlier on the ground level
  • Other than your camouflage hunting dress, don’t forget to wear your harness for safety sake
  • Don’t be hasty in building up the tree stand. Just be calm.

Choosing the Right Hunting Location

It’s very important to find a hunting area where deer visit frequently. For that you would have to look for certain signs that may include; rubs, scrapes and tracks of deer.

All these signs signify that the deer are using this area for their everyday movement. An area with a water storage or a pond of fresh water in the vicinity is another noteworthy sign of bucks living somewhere around.

Note: Deer need water and they normally choose an area to live where they do not have to travel too far for drinking water.

Pick the Right Tree!

  • The tree should have straight and tall stem without much branches. For a tree with branches on the stem, it would be hard to ascend and ultimately you would have to remove the branches (it could be against the law if it is a public property that does not allow cutting of trees).
  • Tree should be perpendicularly downwind and also away from the animal’s traveling direction, to make sure that you remain unnoticed.
  • It should be located at a distance of about 12 to 20 yards from the animal hunting area (for bow hunting).
  • The width of the tree should be reasonable enough to hide your silhouette.
  • Find a tree that provides sufficient covering of leaves on the height of about 25 feet (where you sit). Tress like oak, cedars and maple are known for the best cover to camouflage the hunter.

Note: Oak trees can be the best option, also for the reason that it has acorns and deer just love them.

How to Set up the Tree Stand?

As you have brought your climber tree stand to this far, now is the time to get it fixed on the tree. A climber tree stand consists of three basic parts;

  • A harness rope
  • A hand climber or climbing aid
  • A platform

Note: Each tree stand comes with its instructions card to help you knowing how to build a tree stand. Read that well as each device has its own specifications. Whatever installing info I am sharing here is based on my general knowledge of the climber treestands.

Moreover, it’s also necessary to have the required tools to set up your tree stand. Before going out to set it up, make sure you have a hand saw, a pole saw, a pulley system, a pair of wire strippers, and a cordless drill (for steps) to make your installation both faster and easier. If you can, it also helps to take a friend with you for assistance.

To reach the top, you have to raise each item on the tree respectively, once the tree stand is installed. Let’s discuss it in steps.

Step-1: Wear your harness!

Make sure that you have put on your harness belt and there is a harness rope that you would connect with the tree strap to mount on it. It’s important for your safety.

Step-2: Install the Platform

First is to install the Platform or the climbing base to the tree. Loosen the knobs, unlatch the device. Pull the belt from the tube to place it around the tree. Once you have encircled the tree with it, get it inserted back in the tube of the stand.

Relatch the device.

Step-3: Top Section Installation

The second step is top section’s installation. This part is also known as a hand climber. Mount it to the tree by using the same method as we followed for the platform.

Note: Once you are up there, you would definitely need a lot of things like arrows, bow, food, water, gloves and so on. Make sure you carry all these things with you. Tying a bag containing all the things on the hand climber, is what I always recommend.

Step-4: Interconnect the Stabilizer Straps

Both the parts should be firmly interconnected with stabilizer straps on it. As long as you are on the tree stand, these straps must remain connected to each other.

Step-5: Step on the installed Platform

Before you step on the platform to start climbing up the tree, ensure that you have attached your harness rope to the tree.

Step-6: How to Raise the Platform?

Put your weight slightly on the hand climber and place your feet under the hinges and bars on the platform we have installed in the first place. Apply slight pressure to hinge with inside of the foot. Bend your knees to disengage and then raise the platform from its place.

Step-7: Process to be Repeated!

Keep one foot under the hinge bar and the other in the middle of the platform to maintain your balance. Slide the harness rope (with tree strap) to an appropriate height (as much as your hands extend).

Now disengage the climbing aid and raise it to a higher level. Put the pressure on it and raise the platform. Repeat the same process again and again, unless you reach your desired height.

Step-8: Get yourself Adjusted in the Seat!

Once you have reached your ideal height, adjust and tighten your harness rope and stabilizer straps in a sitting position.

Note: I prefer a sitting position because a sudden transition from sitting to standing position, as the animal appears, may produce sound and can alert a mature buck. You are free to choose whatever position you like.

Conclusion:

I hope this article have made it easy for you to understand how to build a tree stand. Although each climber tree stand comes with different specifications. But the basics of getting on the tree is the same for all of them.

It’s up to you which one you find suitable for you. Those who want to use climber tree stand, following the above mentioned criteria would surely make the climbing process easy for them.

All the best and stay safe.

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Best Bow Stabilizers Of 2018 | The Best Tool For A Perfect Aim

Many pro archers and hunters use bow stabilizers. But what are they for exactly? In essence, a bow stabilizer reduces the vibration and torque when an arrow is shot, and helps to balance the bow in the archer’s hands. If you feel that you need a bow stabilizer, especially for hunting, read this list of the best bow stabilizers that you can buy for your next hunting trip.

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Most Useful Bow Hunting Tips for the Beginner Hunters

I have been talking a lot about the ways of hunting and shooting of late. Many of my readers have been asking me to write something related to bow hunting. Bow hunting or archery is a totally different dimension used for hunting. Things with a bow and arrow are not as simple as they seem apparently. You can’t just be there to draw the arrow. You must have detailed info about its overall functioning and techniques involved. Here I have compiled the most beneficial bow hunting tips to make the procedure easy and fun for the newbies.

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How and Where to Shoot a Deer Instantly

Many times I am asked numerous interesting questions by friends, strangers and novice hunters about my obsession for hunting. Each time I end up on the same reply; hunting for wild meat is my passion. Not just because of the thrill and adventure it gives but also because wild meat is what I am crazy about. Unlike other sources of meat, wild meat is hormone-free and natural. My personal favorite has always been venison (deer meat). It’s a great source of protein. To get the full benefits of it, the hunter must know how and where to shoot a deer. Many of you must be thinking why I said so? Let me explain.

If a fresh and tasty meat is what you are looking for, you must learn to gun down the animal in the first shot. The sooner you down the animal, the better taste it promises. The animal killed in more than one shots can easily produce lactic acid and adrenaline. Both of these may affect the taste of the meat. All of you out there, whether you are a beginner hunter or an experienced one, your first priority should be to be a responsible hunter. Do not let the animal suffer a lingering death. Let me guide you on how to kill a deer in a single shot.

Steps to Follow Before Hunting

Before going into the details of the right way of shooting a deer, the hunters must follow these few necessary steps to make sure they have the best hunting experience.

Step 1: Season of Hunting

Doing things legally is what I always recommend. It’s not that you can hunt for deer in any season you like. Each hunting area offers a different season. That you must inquire before planning the hunt. Simply log in to the website of Department of National Resources of that state, to get the basic information about the hunting season there.

  • Note: Out of season hunting of animals is illegal as it may endanger the wildlife population in that area. Anyone committing this illegal activity may face penalty defined by the state law.

Step 2: Get Your Hunting Permit

Before deciding about how and where to shot a deer, get all the information about hunting permit from the state Department of Natural Resources.  Without a hunting permit, no one is allowed to hunt legally.

Step 3: Hunting Dressing Tips

  • Your hunting clothes are commonly determined by the weather. For summer, hunters should wear light weighed dress and cold weather gear for winter hunting (Wear the clothes in layer for keeping yourself warm in freezing temperature).
  • Choose the camouflage pattern keeping in mind the type of area you are hunting in.
  • Your personal safety also matters. For that I would advise you to wear men’s blaze orange vest over the hunting suit. It would help distinguishing you against the foliage and other hunters (if any) would easily detect you in the wild.
  • Choose the most suitable type of hunting boots from insulated, uninsulated and rubber boots for hunting.
  • Make sure that your clothes are washed in a scent-free soap. Any strange odor may alert the animal of your presence and you may miss the target. In addition to it, do not forget to wear a face mask and gloves. That would also help in controlling your scent.
  • Note: Avoid drinking alcoholic drinks, eating fatty edible items, using scented soaps, deodorants and perfumes for about 24 to 48 hours before the final hunt.

Step 4: Right Weapons for Hunting the Deer

I have always preferred using a rifle in deer hunting. And got the best results. So I personally would suggest a rifle as the best weapon for deer hunting. Rifles come in different calibers. Starting from 243, up to a 30-.06 or 30-30, are some of the best ones for hunting all type of deer. Deer slugs are another great option to kill the deer at one shot. You can give it try.

Lastly, using a bow for hunting the deer is yet another great option. But the hunter must be skilled enough for using it. It’s not my personal favorite as it comes with a legal limit of about 45 pounds draw weight. And that would allow you to aim your target for 20 to 60 yards of distance maximum. And in hunting, you never know how much distance you would have to face.

How and Where to Shoot a Deer?

Once you are done with all the above mentioned steps, now is the time to reach your hunting destination. Sometimes, it takes many hours in waiting for the deer. You have to sit quietly and wait. As deer are more likely to appear in the silent areas of the wild. Once you have located the deer somewhere around you, make sure to take the right position to get it killed in a single shot.

What I have learned from my personal experience is that you can’t hunt a deer in a single shot so easily. There are many factors associated with it. These may include;

  • The distance between you and the animal
  • Angle of the deer
  • Type of weapon
  • Your shooting skills
  • Meat retention

Hunter’s Position

You can shoot the deer in a standing position but my personal recommendation is a crouching position where your knee and thighs give a nice support to your elbow of the arm, holding the rifle.

Right Shot Placement for a Deer Hunt

Check out a few best placements for hunting down the deer.

#1 – Above the Front Leg

The highly recommended area for a deer hunt in a single shot is just behind the shoulder. It includes the heart and lungs. The most accurate position for shooting is 5 to 7 inch above the chest. For that you must be in a position where you can have the broadside view of the prey. Just like in the image below.

  • Note: There are great chances that the animal is not killed immediately. Sometimes it recovers and runs away. And hunters have to chase it through the wild. So be prepared for that too.

#2 – In the Head

For getting the deer down in the first kill, shooting directly in the head is the best option. The perfect area to shoot is right behind the eye of the deer. Only experienced and skilled hunters can deal with such a tricky shot. This way also ensures lesser or no damage to the meat (quite contrary to other ways). But again, there are equal chances of missing your target, especially for the beginners. So be prepared.

#3 – Shooting in the Neck

Another common method is shooting the deer in his neck through the spine. Many of my fellow hunters opt for this method. But I hesitate in trying it. The reason is simply the torture; the deer has to face. Most of the deer are not dead instantly with this method. Rather they are left paralyzed and hunters have to shot it again or simply slit its neck. Like I already told that I dislike a lingering death of the prey, I do not go for this lethal option. But you are free to make your choice.

Conclusion

Hunting down a deer without the right placement and positioning of the shot is quite tough. It should be the first and foremost responsibility of every hunter to save its prey from suffering and pain. And try to kill it instantly. It would not only ease the misery of the deer, but would also save your time. And that is simply possible from practicing, experience and knowing well about how and where to shoot a deer.

You may well want to seek out training like THIS to further hone my shooting skills.

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How to Hunt a Mountain Lion | Getting Your First Kill

Although attacks are rare, mountain lions can be a frightening sight for a camper or hiker. But to hunters like you and me, a mountain lion can be seen as an object for the sport with the promise of an exhilarating hunt. These amazing animals can sprint fast, jump high, and are excellent hunters themselves—qualities that make them quite challenging to catch or hunt. Nevertheless, this article will be teaching you how to trap or hunt mountain lions step-by-step.

I’m going to divide this section into two parts: how to hunt a mountain lion and how to trap a mountain lion, for these two methods are entirely different and require different types of skills to be executed efficiently. Even if you prefer one method over the other, I suggest you read both sections to add more to your knowledge.

How to Hunt Mountain Lions

Hunting these big cats is a challenge and requires rigorous exercise, but finally getting that mountain lion on the back of your truck is definitely worth it. Here is a step-by-step tutorial on what you need to do in order to catch these regal creatures:

A mountain lion’s paw - Photo credit: Sinclairstoryline.com

Step 1: Prepare yourself.

It is of utmost importance that you ensure you are physically and mentally capable of hunting these animals. These are not your typical game animals: they are fast, agile, and potentially dangerous. Before you proceed on a mountain lion hunting trip, here is a checklist you should read:

  • Ensure that you are capable of running for long distances on regular to difficult terrain.
  • In case of facing a provoked lion (usually trying to protect its territory against you: a potential threat), make sure you know how to scare it off. This involves waving your hands slowly, making yourself appear larger.
  • There is a possibility that you can get attacked, so make sure you’re capable of defending yourself.
  • Hunting these lions require patience and persistence. Otherwise, you may scare it off easily and lose your kill.
  • It is generally the best bet to be physically fit in order to hunt mountain lions, due to the difficulty and amount of physical activity that this sport requires. In this case, physically fit means you are able to run, jump, hike, and climb without too much difficulty.
  • Stealth is important in this sport, for mountain lions are very elusive creatures. Make sure you can crouch, crawl, and walk quietly enough on a forest floor.

Step 2: Do your research

Know how to track mountain lions, the extra precautions you need to make, the location you’re going to be hunting in, as well as the local laws regarding mountain lion hunting. In addition, watch informative videos on hunting and read articles such as this one to be as prepared as possible for your first trip.

Step 3: Prepare for your hunting trip

To hunt mountain lions, you’ll need to have:

  • Hunting rifle
  • Ammunition
  • Hunting knife
  • Water
  • Extra food
  • Bait (optional)
  • First aid kit
  • Proper attire (thick clothes and boots; as well as something bright to prevent friendly fire)
  • Binoculars (optional)
  • Calling instrument (optional)

When you have your pack settled, it’s time to decide whether you need a hunting partner or not. I recommend having a more experienced hunter accompany you on your first trip. But if you feel that you can handle the hunt by yourself, do so with caution.

It is also recommended to have a trained hunting dog to accompany you, since they can sniff out and find mountain lions better than you can. Make sure to bring treats for them as well.

Step 4: Choose your location

You can’t just go to random wooded area and expect to find a mountain lion there. Know the locations where the mountain lion population is big enough for game hunting, and select the one you prefer. Once you have chosen the most convenient place for your hunt, schedule a trip there.

However, you cannot go on a hunt immediately. Take at least 3-5 trips to that area to familiarize yourself (if you aren’t yet) to avoid getting lost. Strategize your game plan and scope out the possible spots where a mountain lion might appear for a more efficient hunt.

Step 5: Lure/track a mountain lion

To track a mountain lion, look out for their paw prints. For a beginner, it may seem difficult. But with enough practice, you will have a trained eye.

A mountain lion’s paw

A mountain lion’s paw – Photo credit: Grandviewoutdoors.com

A mountain lion is a very territorial creature. It will scrape dirt, grass, twigs, leaves, and other debris into a pile and then urinate it as a mark of its territory over that area. Other times, it will bury its food under a mound of leaves and dirt to hide it from other animals. Thus, look for these indications of a mountain lion nearby, and wait for the animal to come back in a safe hiding place so you can shoot it from afar.

Another technique of luring a mountain lion is to use bait. Like most animals, it will prefer a live bait rather than a dead one, so be sure to choose the former for better chance of success. However, this method can have you luring all types of animals, so be wary of your choice.

You can also lure lions with mouth calls using reeds or recordings of a lion’s sounds. Employ this technique and then wait for a mountain lion to come by.

Finally, a very popular and successful method is to have a hunting dog aid you. Well-trained hunting dogs can sniff out a mountain lion from afar and lead you to it. Like house cats, mountain lions usually run away from barking dogs and will most likely climb up a tree for safety. When it is trapped, you can now shoot it.

Step 6: Go for the Kill

When shooting a mountain lion either with a gun or an arrow, always aim for the animal’s head or heart as much as possible. Not only is this a humane way to kill the lion, but an aim to its fatal spots can prevent it from running away. Otherwise, a shot to the hind or back, for example, can make the animal panic and sprint as far away as possible.

Keep in mind the local laws regarding this type of hunting and kill only the allowed number of lions that you can hunt.

How to Trap a Mountain Lion

Trapping a mountain can be more dangerous than hunting it. Why? After you’ve caught a live lion in your trap, you’re going to be dealing with a very angry, very stressed creature. Moreover, trapping is usually used when you want to control the predation in your area since these lions can prey on your livestock or pets. Nevertheless, if you do it right, you can catch a mountain lion with these steps:

Step 1: Prepare your trap

Choose the trap you think would be most effective. Mountain lions are very strong creatures, so you need high caliber traps that can hold them. Trap options for catching mountain lions are:

Leg Hold

Snares

Cage Traps

A mountain lion trapped in a cage

A mountain lion trapped in a cage – Photo credit: mountainlion.org

Step 2: Place your trap

Place your trap in a strategic place. Examples of such are near territorial indications, areas where you usually see them, and near their tracks.

Check your trap once a day from a distance. These animals will be very hostile, so exercise caution.

Step 3: Transfer or Kill the Lion

If you want to get rid of the lion, I suggest having wildlife control transfer it to another place for you. Do not approach it if you are unsure of how to handle the situation. If you are going to attempt to transfer it yourself, use legal tranquilizers to put the animal to sleep before caging.

Another thing you can do is shooting it, but if you have no use for their meat or fur, let them live and have them transferred.

Conclusion

Mountain lions are one of the most challenging animals to hunt, other than the mighty black bear or the ferocious wolf, among many others. However, the thrill and exercise of the hunt is what we’re really looking for; a challenge that any hunter is happy to overcome. If you are a novice hunter looking to get your first mountain lion, this article will happily help you out.

Therefore, I hope you enjoyed this article and learned a lot from it. Don’t forget to share it with your friends and leave a comment below. Thanks for reading!

you can read more about How To Hunt Rabbits Without A Hunting Dog by this articles!

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Tips on How to Track a Wounded Deer and What to Look For

One of the most common questions all new hunters have is how to effectively find an animal you have shot. Tracking wounded deer can be a challenge if you are unsure of what you are doing. There are some easy to make mistakes that can make finding your deer far more challenging than it needs to be, but it is capable to avoid these mistakes if you know what you are doing.

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