Bowhunting is an annual tradition enjoyed in certain parts of the world like Europe, the United States of America, and New Zealand. These practices are used to hunt gaming animals for sports or food using but not limited to archery. Since there is a prescribed season regulated by states, read more to know the best season on when to bow hunt.
Popularized and innovated in the 1920s, bow hunting is a form of hunting with the use of arrows and different kinds of bows. Though it involves killing animals, this is legal practice for effective wildlife management to promote healthy growth in deer overpopulation. In 2016, the U.S Fish and Wildlife Service reported that 32% of the 11 million people that hunt use a bow.
In the Northern States and Canadian provinces, the big game for bow hunting begins as early as August and slightly later dates in the Southern States. For the 2020 Wisconsin Hunting and Trapping Seasons, the archery and crossbow for deer hunt will start from September 12, 2020, to January 3 of 2021 while allotting two days of Octobers 10 and 11 of 2020 for Youth Deer Hunt.
On the other hand, the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission’s 2020-2021 Florida Resident Game and Furbearer Hunting Season will occur at an earlier date. The animals are categorized in Zones A to D with options of antlered or antlerless deer. The antlered deer archery and crossbow seasons will begin on the first of August and end on August 30 for archery while September 4 for the crossbow. In Zone B, archery and crossbow seasons start on October 17 and ends on November 15 for the former and November 20 for the latter.
The antlerless deer are permitted with the Deer Management Units (DMU) Regulations. In Zone A, archery and crossbow seasons for DMU A2 and DMU A3 both begin on the first of August but ends on August 9 for DMU A2 while August 16 for DMU A3. For Zone B, archery and crossbow seasons both start on the first of October and end on the 15th of November. While it starts on the 19th of September and ends on the 18th of October for Zone C and the last zone will occur from October 24 to November 25.
The New York Hunting and Trapping 2020 Regular and Bowhunting Deer Seasons start from sunrise to sunset. It is divided into Northern Zone, Southern Zone, Westchester County, and Suffolk County. Early bowhunting in the Northern Zone starts as early as late September up to the last week of October while the crossbow season is between October 14 to October 23. In the Southern Zone, early bowhunting goes about from the first of October to November 20 while crossbow is between the dates of November 7 to November 20. The regular program is only available from October 1 to December 31 for Westchester County and up to January 31 of 2021 for Suffolk County. Late bowhunting is also conducted but to a later date.
In the 2019 Wisconsin Deer Hunting Regulations, archery and crossbow seasons start on September 14 to December 11 and December 16 to January 5 for statewide locations. From the dates mentioned above in various bowhunting events, it is best believed that the duration of the annual bowhunting occurs as early as August and ends by the first month of 2021.
BEST SEASON TO HUNT
Charlie Alsheimer of Western New York State authored the “Strategies for Whitetails” and other hundred books and magazines related to deer hunting. He has done enough field and extensive work to identify the best time of the day to bow hunt. Alsheimer’s formulas in predicting how to catch deer are by observing deer behaviours and understanding their daily activities.
Deer are nocturnal. Meaning they are active at night and return to sleep by morning. They bed far away from what they think are predators including bow hunters. But these things change when the breeding season starts. Deer leave their nocturnal side and become energetic during daylight — a great chance for bow hunters to strike their shot.
Their activities when not in breeding seasons are underlying in low-light conditions because this makes them feel safer and secure being in the open. Considerations in weather patterns, photoperiod, human presence, and moon phases also help dictate deer movements which Alsheimer studied. In his observations, warm weather makes the deer less active in daylight so they are most likely to wait until the sun and temperature are down.
The best time to bow hunt in the early season which runs from September 1 to October 15 during the last two hours of daylight. This is because of the warm temperature that decreases deer movements from the middle of the morning to late afternoon. While there is also a mid-season from October 31 to November 10 when deer begin to breed. In Alsheimer’s study, he believes that the second full moon after the autumn equinox triggers the deer’s breeding cycles. He also recommends taking advantage of morning hunts at this time at least staying in until 11 a.m. The last season is called “The Rut” which is between November 7 to 15. This time, bowhunters can see deers moving any time of the day so they can hunt in the morning, midday, afternoon, or evening. Personally, Alsheimer files his vacation to go deer hunting during the fall or to be more specific, from November 5 to 11.
It is important to be knowledgeable of your local state’s rules and regulations on season dates, license, requirements, and types of equipment to bow hunt. While hunting in peak season increases the chance of hitting a deer, try to take the chance and explore the calmness of the woods at any season. Using an electric bike for hunting also increases the chances for you to catch one because of its speed and silent runs in the field. Spot your target and happy hunting!