Deer Season Updates - 2007

November 2007 Deer Season Update

The month of November brought us some great hunting action, more coyote exploits. and some truly rare events here in Whitetail Paradise.

Before we get started let's revisit October for a moment, and catch up on a hunter whose photo's were a bit delayed, due to…hunting!

Fans of Building Whitetail Paradise are quite familiar with the Burke brothers, Jeff and Darren (see Volumes 1,2 and 4a). Well, the next generation takes center stage this year, as Jeff's son Travis scored big during our early season youth hunt, with his first buck! Great job Travis!!!

Early November brought the big boys together with the does, and gave us unbelievable close-up video of these love-struck couples. Coyotes continued to put extreme pressure on the farms…and the boys made plans to remedy the situation…on to the November action!

Bob's friend Todd (see Volume 4b) flew back for another visit and boy, did he have an action packed hunt! Never having shot a buck before (by choice), or a coyote (lack of opportunity) Todd's patience paid off in spades this year!

Early one morning, 2 coyotes were attempting to grab a beaver of all things for breakfast, close to Todd's deer stand. The beaver made it into a hole, and the coyotes were trying to figure out how to get him out when Todd zipped an arrow high over one of the canines. A report over the radio brought this response from Bob, "Keep an eye peeled, they are in packs here this year. You are likely to see more! Get ready!!!)

Moments later, Todd radio'd that he shot a coyote at 42 yards. Then it started…You may recall Bob's incident (Volume 5) with the barking Alpha male coyote. Well, guess who was the leader of the pack around Todd this particular morning. 20 solid minutes of barking from within the cover afforded by switchgrass, drove all of us crazy. The radio was lighting up with recommendations for Todd…When the coyote stepped clear of the cover, at a range of 46 yards, Todd launched the arrow that Bob had been waiting a whole year for…and the barking ceased forever!

A quick radio celebration ended with the sighting of a dandy buck three hundred fifty yards distant. Todd blew his grunt call and the buck stopped. Another call turned this buck into a thoroughbred, racing to some cover 95 yards from Todd. Aggressive calling brought the buck out of the cover and straight to the stand. In short order, 2 coyotes and a dandy buck were on the ground, thanks to Todd's straight shooting with is trusty Bowtech bow!

Friend Jeff Cox got down from his stand in the next section over, and walked into a find of a lifetime, live locked up trophy bucks! They will be featured on one of Bob's Woods N' Water TV segments, aired on The Outdoor Channel in December. You can check out our YouTube version of the segment by clicking here.


Locked Bucks Illinois

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Bob continued to get his licks in on the coyotes, shooting his 5th and 6th coyotes of the season during the first shotgun deer weekend, bring the grand total to 8 deceased coyotes so far!

Jeff Burke (vol. 1, 2) hit paydirt once again, with this heavily massed monster buck during our first shotgun season. "I really didn't need a shotgun for this buck" said Jeff, "he was 15 feet from the tree when I shot him!" The head on this deer is absolutely huge, and the antlers are a testament to what maturity can mean to genetically blessed deer. We'll look forward to a forensic tooth aging from Wildlife Analytical Labs (DeerAge.com)

Longtime friend Matt Soehn (Vol. 2, 4a) had his QDM efforts rewarded when his friend Steve Danosky tagged a very nice fully mature Paradise buck!

Now on to the just plain weird…Like many folks, we run trail cameras in order to census wildlife, as well as for security purposes. We have taken thousands and thousands of photographs over the years, and have never seen anything like the following…

Background: 182 photos on this camera. All pictures are "normal", except for 6 images on the morning of November 16th between 3:59 a.m and 4:02 a.m. What appears to be a light beam appears with an "object" floating within the beam appears. There is no movement from wind on the branches or grass, but the beam and object appear to move side to side, up and down and in and out from one image to the next.


Unexplainable Images Captured

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If anyone knows of a reasonable explanation or similar experience, please contact us at info@Heartlandillinois.com

We now have 14 videos posted on Youtube, click here to check them out!

Until the next update, we wish you the best for the upcoming Holiday Season!


October 2007 Deer Season Update

Before we kick off the October recap update, we'd like to thank everyone for the great feedback on our first update (early October) incorporating streaming video! We have added even more clips to our YouTube site, and you may view them all by clicking the following link…

http://www.youtube.com/Creative1me

Hard to believe the first month of our deer season is in the rearview mirror already, and what a month it was! The first week of October felt more like July as temps and humidity soared into the 90's! Due to the August floods, we experienced for the very first time an onslaught of blood sucking mosquitoes.

Not wanting to use an applied repellant, we field-tested Therma-Cell products in our deer stands. It took about 15-20 minutes for the product to become effective, and once it did…NO MOSQUITOS! Thank you Therma-Cell for inventing a product so necessary that works as advertised!

Last update, Bob alluded to the ongoing onslaught of coyote packs in Whitetail Paradise. Well he decided to be proactive early in the war this year, and broke out the .22-250 on the 3rd of October. Check out the unfortunate results in the video below!


Coyotes Interrupt Deer Hunt!

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Mature buck action began just about as soon as the season did once again. A buck we've named Old Spike claimed the delicious buffet offered in the Petting Zoo, a key Hunting Plot (see BWP 2, 3 & 4a).

Yet another experiment is paying big dividends this year. Bob planted soybeans into 1/3 of the Zoo earlier this summer, to go along with the clover and alfalfa. Take a stab at aging Old Spike, seen in the video below enjoying the buffet in this hunting plot …and e-mail your aging estimate to us at info@heartlandillinois.com

The 2nd week of October also yielded some awesome footage of another resident stud buck, whom Bob has picked out as "his" buck for this year. This dandy 8 pointer came into a Micro-Plot (see BWP 4b) to get some early exercise chasing does. His body and antlers made quite a jump from last year (see buck census BWP 5), and Bob believes he is either a great 4 year old, or possibly a light-bodied 5 . After chasing the doe at full gallop, he turned around and came back in for the feast afforded at this micro-hunting plott!


Will BIG Bucks visit Hunting Plots?

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The middle of the month brought consistently high winds, with huge gusts. Now everyone knows this depresses deer movement. Right? Not so as the deer sought the shelter afforded by the many improvements we have made while Building Whitetail Paradise.

Little Beast

Bob's good friend Todd (Volume 4a) flew in to visit for a few days and shot a big mature doe, while in the midst of watching a pack of 5 coyotes working over his area in 2 groups! After a perfect shot, the doe ran about 100 yards, dropped like a rock and kicked… out ran 2 coyotes frightened by this does death run, they thought she was comin' for them!

The doe that Todd tagged turned out to be the first of a double for the morning, as Bob also killed a doe as she led her triplet fawns by his stand. The excitement wasn't over yet…

Bob and Todd made a camera run to collect film for development from all the remote cams around the farm. On the way to Wal-Mart to get the film developed, BOOM the truck was rocked seemingly by an explosion while traveling a narrow 2 lane highway at 55 mph. Bob drove the truck up the road a bit where they could safely pull onto a small stretch of shoulder and notice the windshield had cratered in front of Todd in the passenger seat.

Little Beast

"We had no idea what had happened", said Todd who was showered with small glass fragments. "As near as we can figure, a buck raced out of the woods, and ran smack into the side of the truck just behind the headlight. It's head smashed the windshield, and the body crashed into the side of the truck."

"This was our lucky day" said Bob, "Todd could've been killed if the deer penetrated the windshield." "Several good Samaritans stopped to make sure we were ok, including a couple on a motorcycle who were traveling right behind us when the incident occurred." "We're thankful it hit us and not them." A big thank you to those who stopped to see if we were OK!

The doe harvest at the end of the month in Whitetail Paradise stands at 5 mature does.

Kudos to Country Companies Insurance who had a representative stop by almost immediately afterward! After appraising the damage, he left a check for $6,000 to repair the damages! Comprehensive coverage saved the day, as the deductable was only $100.00, and no charge against Bob's driving record.

Later in the month, Bob set-up on The Big 8 once again. While waiting for him, an extra-large doe and her fawns fed in the Micro-Plot he was hunting over, and a well placed shot dropped her in seconds.

Directly from up the hill The Big 8 made his appearance. 10 minutes of standing at 80 yards surveying the situation afforded a good video opportunity. Finally as light continued to fade, he approached to 50 yards, and once again stopped to look over the distant valley. Finally, with the coast clear the feast at Micro-Plot would wait no longer and a 20 yard opportunity would soon be at hand. At the moment he crossed the 40 yard line, 2 packs of unseen coyotes erupted in song, one 100 yards to the south, and one 50 yards to the west. The Monster Buck exploded to put an additional 200 yards between them, and Bob's golden opportunity at his target buck vanished…all on video!

Coyote Packs in Paradise…aaargh!

We are cooperating with the IDNR CWD surveillance program once again this year, and submitting all adult deer brain stem tissue for analysis. No positive tests were found in our County last year, following the only 2 positive deer the previous year. A CWD positive deer was found early this fall, further south in Illinois than previously known. We'll keep you posted…

Well that's it for now, until next month we wish you the best that fall offers in your chosen Whitetail Paradise!


Early October Update

New for this year, you'll find us on YouTube!

Hello friends!

Seems like ages since our last update, but boy has it been busy here in Whitetail Paradise!

First off, let's start with a quick recap of habitat work from where we left off last year.

Habitat Projects

When deer season ended, we immediately shifted gears to begin our habitat enhancements here in Paradise. Timber stand improvement was a top priority, and a private forestry consultant was called upon to assist us to achieve our goals.

Our goals were fairly simple this time around, to open our forest canopy in a shotgun fashion, creating many small pockets of re-growth, creating an even distribution of tender young browse. These small pockets of cover meet the needs of our high population of bucks (see Volume 5 - buck census), who really prefer these areas for bedding cover. An additional goal was to maximize income from this TSI, and only Walnut and Cherry trees were selected, as the market is very good currently for this species.

The loggers were very efficient, removing 440 trees in slightly more than a week's time. The resulting open areas blossomed immediately with new growth, lending a helping hand to our wildlife! Tree tops were left to provide additional cover.

Next on the habitat agenda came our native grass burns. Thanks to the previous years burn preparation, (See Volume 5) Bob and George successfully and safely burned 4 locations of switchgrass, totaling 20 acres. In addition to his comedy work, George is a big help assisting in these types of very serious habitat projects!

The resulting re-growth of these native grass pockets are absolutely beautiful, refreshed and ready for a another 3-5 years of duty, providing cover for our deer and many other species of wildlife.

After finishing up the production farming chores this spring, it was on to the food plots.

We once again rotated our beans and corn plots, which is really a great stewardship idea. Corn and bean plot planting went smoothly, followed by sorghum and clover/alfalfa plots. Later in early August we continued our brassicas test (3rd year), by planting a commercial variety. So far our deer ignore these plantings, but over time we'll find out if they will eat them!

Spring Turkey Hunting

With the field work complete, it was time to enjoy some turkey hunting. George offered to assist me, and actually guaranteed me a bird! His unconventional tactics worked great, and we laughed till we cried on this hunt!


Crazy Turkey Hunt with The Deer Guys

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Then it was George's turn, and we dressed him in a Ghille suit, sat him out in the open, and he became a lone bush to be investigated and nearly pecked at! What a riot! We'll post up this footage soon, check back!

Flying Carp Shooting

Bob was invited by the folks from MVP Outdoors (www.MVPoutdoors.com) to participate in an archery "hunt" for the crazy flying carp. It actually may be bowfishing at it's finest, but it really felt like a war at times with carp looking to take out the folks in the boat! The great folks at Muzzy were nice enough to outfit Bob with the gear necessary to get the job done. Bob said, "It was the most fun I've had with my clothes on"! We encourage you to give this invasive species a try, it's comparable to nothing else for intense action!

Growing Season

After planting, the weather was HOT and DRY, then COLD and WET. After 6 seasons of drought, the moisture was greatly appreciated! Then it got dry again, and we were praying for rain…and our prayers were answered in spades! In early August, the rain gauge OVERFLOWED with a 2-hour rain deluge resulting in major flooding.

Throughout all the varied weather, the crops and plots did pretty well, with a bumper corn and bean plot crop, while the clover and alfalfa are hit or miss on individual plots. The sorghum couldn't take the weather and was replanted into brassicas, which are easy to plant (see BWP Volume 3), and helped with ground cover, keeping the weeds down in the plots. The turnips are huge, and were planted in late July.

Business News

New Products

On the business side here at Heartland Studios, it has been action packed! We released many new products this year, we have really enjoyed and appreciated all the letters and e-mail from folks around the country experiencing our products! What a blast!!!!

Television

As if the above didn't keep us busy enough, we also have produced BWP segments that can be seen 3X weekly on The Outdoor Channel this Fall, on the Woods N' Water TV show. The show airs Mondays at 5:30 P.M. Central Standard time, Wednesdays at 6:00 A.M. CST, and Saturday nights at 11:00 P.M. Set your recording devices… and enjoy BWP on TV!

Music

We were back in the studio this summer with The Deer Guys Band, enjoying recording yet another song Bob envisioned, entitled "I'm Lookin' for a Man" (who can outfish me)


I'm Lookin' for a Man" (who can outfish me)

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The Deer Guys Comedy

We have begun shooting another episode of The Deer Guys, and incredible footage destroying cars/trucks and an RV were used for one of our customer's internet marketing projects. (see below) Another snippet from this shoot has been posted on YouTube entitled Bargain Oil Change. View it below…


Bargain Oil Change

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YouTube

Heartland Studios has entered the YouTube realm! We have begun producing content for businesses seeking alternative marketing avenues. You can check out a wild one that we recently completed for a custom firearm manufacturer, Research and Testing Worx, Inc. (RatWorxUSA.com). This project resulted in a Burbank, CA TV Production Company wanting to purchase the footage for their shows, and a radio station inquiring about doing a show on us, and doing work for them! These requests came in within 24 hours of it's airing on YouTube!!


Unlocking Lock down

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Fall hunting season

As we begin our Fall hunting season, we have a few challenges to deal with.

Deer movement has been suppressed due to an explosion in our coyote population. On the 2nd of October, Bob arrowed a doe that ran smack into a pack of Coyotes! As you'll recall during the 2006 updates, those wiley coyotes drove Bob crazy! This season they have brought in reinforcements. While trailing the doe, no less than 5 different packs sounded off, all in Whitetail Paradise! Game on!


Coyote/Deer Conflict

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Well that's it for now, until the next time we wish you nothing but the best for your hunting season! We'll keep you posted on all the news from here, while we continue Building Whitetail Paradise!

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