Best Times to Hunt Whitetail Deer

The white-tailed deer is the smallest member of the North American deer species. They stay in Canadian forests and South America.

During summer, they usually remain in the fields and woods for shade and shelter. In winter, deers still inhabit the forests and find shelter in coniferous trees. They stay there to safeguard themselves from possible danger.

Every day thousands of hunters wake up before sunrise to hunt. Some hunters prefer to go out during the nighttime. Every hunter has a hunting schedule. The schedule that they set varies on their lifestyle and time availability. You got to fix a schedule that is convenient for you.

Whitetail Deer in the plains

A better understanding of when is the best time for deer hunting is essential. We must study their behavior in different seasons and situations.

There is no exact time for hunting, but many things can increase your chances of a successful hunt. (Read How to Start Hunting)

Deers’ Daily Routine

Deers start their day early. They usually wake a few hours before the evening. The time varies on where you are but, it could be around 4:00 pm to 6:00 pm, usually during deer season.

As deers become active, their first plan is to look for food. They tend to move towards their prey. Once they have a catch and start eating, their senses are extra sensitive to danger.

In the evening, deers become more alert. Although they are nocturnal animals, they do not have keen eyesight. And yes, even most states restrict hunters about what time to hunt. It is better to be indoors when the evening comes. (Read our Crossbow Reviews)

Through the night, deers will roam and graze. They head back to rest and sleep for a few hours around midnight. They will stay this way for some time before heading out to feed again in the morning.

Deers will start to look for bedding sites before dawn breaks. This is generally between 6:00 am and 9:00 am in most states. During this time, deers are already sluggish and start to slow down.

Hunting Tips

To have a better view of identifying deers at a distance, invest in good optics. Some brands offer optics costing a thousand dollars. But, you can always get another that is as functional as a cheap one. The brand and price do not matter anyway.

A lot of roads are inaccessible during rut season. Hunting sites now restrict vehicle access, which only allows horse or foot traffic. Some hunters usually leave their cars and start hiking up in the early morning.

Parking lots on hunting sites can become crowded when you arrive late. Be early so you can pick a great spot. A deer is sensitive to human noise.

They are quickly alerted even with the faintest noise from hunters. Trying to take quicks steps in between sprinting can help. Keep your footsteps light and slow.

Hunting Schedules

Pinpointing the best times for hunting deer with many variables is a challenging study, especially without concrete evidence. Educated guesses are based on the know behavioral patterns of deers. This schedule is a summary of various observations and experiences of hunters.

During dawn and the early morning, the temperature is mild and calm. This makes it a suitable venue for deers to have a deep rest. Because deers are nocturnal animals, they are less aggressive during this time.

If the weather is cold in mid-morning, you will most likely find a deer on the move. On mid-mornings of the rut seasons, when the night is moonless, deers roam the forests. The prime deer hunting time is around 10:00 am to 11:00 am. Most people ignore this period as they are already tired from their early morning hustle.

Group of whitetail deers

Between 11:00 am and 1:00 pm, hunters flock to the woods and crowd the tree stands. Keeping your stand until around 1:00 pm can give you a great shot at bringing home a catch. It is essential to keep quiet and move in a smooth motion. Deers often get startled by human movements. Once deer senses danger, they become aggressive and sensitive.

You can take a short break for eating and stretching, from 1:00 pm onwards. In any weather, most deers will rest and sleep during this period. Take advantage of the time and make the most of your rest.

During dusk, a few hours before sunset, it will have the most unstable temperature. Colder nights and possible storms may push the deer to bed earlier.

Best Times for Hunting

Hunting best times are hard to predict. You may take your chances and start hunting before morning breaks. Staying around 1:00 pm can give you a great possibility of bringing home a whitetail deer.

Based on my experiences, the best time is between 10:00 am to Midday. This is from most reviews and feedbacks of experienced hunters. Continuous research of deer in your area can help you. Tracking their movements and behavior can also give you some solid leads in hunting.

A great hunter is the one who is most vigilant and determined. It is also normal for everyone to be off the game from time to time. The only sure thing is that you can’t hunt a deer inside your house. So keep moving and show off those hunting techniques. (Read Best Small Binoculars)

Hunting is a personal preference, and everybody has a reason why. Fill your heart’s content with whatever relates to you. Keep in mind that your own experiences are different from others. It is your choice to achieve the goals that you set. So keep hunting whitetail deer and enjoy.

Best Times to Hunt Whitetail Deer

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