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  • Deer Attractant Test

    I am in my third year of managing around a 200 acre parcel of property in Randolph County. If you can imagine my property being an island of hardwoods and creek bottom completely surrounded by ag fields, you have a pretty good idea of the area Iím hunting. My property is surrounded on three sides by soy bean fields, and on one side by corn, used mostly for silage. This creates ideal conditions for keeping deer around, but also makes it very difficult to see much action in the early part of the season as my property is cut off from these fields by a two lane road that runs the length of the mostly rectangular shaped property. I, like I assume other hunters are, am constantly bombarded by hunting magazines, outdoor channels and mailers from outdoor stores with products promising to attract and hold the biggest deer in the area to your property and benefit them with boosted antler growth and improved overall herd health. Like every other sucker that keep these companies in business, Iíve finally decided to see how efficient these products really are at bringing deer in that would usually be out grazing most of the early bow season in the abundant ag fields. I went to my local Tractor Supply and Dicks Sporting Goods and purchased some of the most popular and most widely advertised products I see. I picked up Hank Parkerís favorite CíMere Deer powdered attractant, as well as a gallon of ready-made Deer-Cane instant mineral lick site creator. I also got 200lbs of shell corn, my personal favorite and a Big and J long range attractant block. Last but not least, after being an occasional reader of this site for many years, I purchased the highly touted trophy rock that has been so highly spoken of here. Below are my results from a one month trial, ranging from July 19 to August 16. I chose 5 spots, that I typically see a lot of good deer action during the majority of the season to put out these products out and watched them with Wild Innovations infrared game cams.

    Let me preface these results by stating that I am not, nor do I claim to be any kind of a wildlife expert. If you donít agree with my statements or methods of baiting that is completely understandable and you are certainly entitled to your opinion. I have hunted my entire life and done a fair bit of research into the tactics and science and mostly luck that make up a successful hunt. All I did was follow the directions for the application of these products and reported them in the hopes that this info might help others have a better hunt and harvest more deer.

    1. CíMere Deer: I sprinkled the Xtreme Powder onto a rotting stump about 20 feet from a creek bed on a downward sloping hill. There is a well established trail that crosses the area about 15 feet away from the site. I wound up with 181 pictures on the cam at this site. Mostly does or does with fawns. Most simply licked the stump with no real digging or rooting noticeable. Overall I would say that this is a pretty decent product but nothing that is going to cause deer to sprint over and stay around.
    2. Deer Cane Ready to Use Liquid: Of all the products I used, the deer found the Deer Cane first. I cleared a 4ftx4ft area of ground on top of ridge climbing up and away from the creek bed on the cornfield side of the property. I noticed the deer really dug a good hole, trying to get as much as possible of the trace minerals that leeched into the ground. There were 269 pics on the cam in this area with bucks and does of all ages but mostly only one at a time. Definitely a good product, that the deer found within 3 hours of me leaving.
    3. Shell Corn: My all time go to attractant. Iíve harvested more deer in the vicinity of corn than anything else. I had a feeder standing in a Ĺ acre clearing coming off an old, dry creek bed. I had 312 pics on my cam in this area but you have to take the good with the bad. There were plenty of deer, one being the only true ďshooterĒ I saw on camera, but there were also tons of pictures of crows, raccoons, possums and squirrels. Everyone likes the corn! You also have the advantage of the timed feedings bringing the animals in at the time you designate.
    4. Big and J Long Range Attractant Block: I placed this block at a worn out trail that cuts across a small creek at the furthest southward edge of my property. It could have very well been poor placement on my part but this product did the worst of them all on my property, with the camera over that area only capturing 86 pics, most of those being of rabbits and raccoons. Iíve seen several good deer in this area, but might have just not been an ideal location for the block.
    5. Trophy Rock: After seeing all of the hype of the trophy rock on this particular site, I decided to try one out. I placed the rock off a well used trail in a small opening in a hardwood bottom. The lowest part of the surrounding areas, I figured the water that collected in this area would help the minerals from the rock leach into the ground. To my surprise this did the best of any of the products I used as far as picture count. The camera in this area captured 517 images. There were no monsters, but several pics with 7,8 and 9 deer in them at a time pawing and rooting at the ground around the rock(which disappeared rather quickly.) I wonder after seeing the ingredients of the trophy rock if this isnít almost like a Gatorade for deer on a hot summer day, the salt and other trace minerals replacing what deer sweat out on long hot days. I wonder what the effectiveness of this product is when it gets cold and deer are looking for an easier digesting, faster source of energy like corn. Any suggestions??
    Pics included are around trophy rock. Apparently it is so good it can turn a grey squirrel into a flying squirrel.

    Again this info is not meant to bash one product or endorse another. Iíll always be a shell corn man and usually just wait until the acorns start falling and latch my climber to an acorn dropper and wait for a big boy. Just hoping this might be helpful/interesting info to my fellow hunters.
    Thanks for the test you did.
    Real world without being paid. Love it!
    I too have had the same results with Deer Cain. Got a hole 12' deep the deer have dug. I've also put mineral blocks there also.
    But corn will always work as long as it stays legal!
    Just ask the guys in Virginia where it's illegal to put out corn for wildlife but every Wally World has DEER CORN for sale. Go figure.
    Jack Lamb
    the test
    Thanks for the play by play on your tests. You are absolutely right, we live in a capitalistic society where most in business are driven by greed. You duly noted that 'stuff', know what I mean, is everywhere. We get caught up lookin at deer get the biguns and they gotta be taken by bow and you have to use this scent, that attractant, this camo pattern,....yadi yadi you get the idea. I too came to the same conclusion, don't know why, trophy rock out performs any out there, that is my go to mineral supply. Scents, same thing, no matter what I try, I go back to tinks 69. As Viper has noted in the past, hunt cross wind. As GT once noted, keep the butt crack Always check the wind...No matter what you are wearing, scent you are cannot hide from that nose......
    Let's go hunting
    I've used all the above, except for the Big & J line.
    So far, the Deercaine in powder form mixed with water has been pretty good, but not great.
    Cmere deer works good, but it seems to dry up pretty quick after application and deer quit hitting it.

    I have all three in my back yard as a test, and my herd of about 15-20 different deer seem to hit the 465 most often. Another good thing with the backyard test is that you can tell when they stop/start hitting the minerals at different times of the fall, which helps you plan how to hunt your killin' land.

    Ive also noticed that they don't like the minerals right on an existing trail, and they don't seem to hit them very hard when you place them right beside food like shell corn

    I set my mineral sites about 50-100 yards away from feed on incoming trails for early season and you always catch the deer coming in about 20 min before dark to hit the mineral before going to feed at night. Works wonders for bow hunting

    I like the trophy rocks, they keep deer coming, but you only have that one site per rock, and they are marginally expensive for a 12lb rock.
    Lately I have been using the TrophyRock 465 from Gander Mountain and it is awesome. You get a 30lb bag of pea gravel sized granules for $17-$20, which is cheaper per pound (.57 cents p/p vs. $1.25), you can make up to 3 sites off of the same bag, and the granules saturate the soil much faster than the big rocks. I have had deer come to it almost immediately and dig 12' deep carhood size holes within a month. The only thing that is bad about trophy rock (and deercaine) is the deer (bucks in particular) seem to always let it lay after the 3 week in September or so.
    Im guessing its because they don't need as much mineral as it begins to cool down and they lose their velvet. Each year my mineral sites die off around the same time, and then pick back up again after the rut around the 1st week in December.

    Just what Ive seen over the past 3 or 4 years, but it is a pretty consistent pattern
    Thanks for the insight.....Good to see what works for some ......
    speaking of stuff
    Won't be long and I'll hang a scent bomb to see what studs are around. Usually the week before gun season I'll hang a 'stink bomb', a tampon saturated in good'ol Tinks 69 in front of a trail might be surprised of the on lookers and rubber neckers you get to swing by....
    brings'em outta the woodwork.
    As we have discussed before...If a hunter is using a so and so product and gets *Lucky* then that product worked!!! Did it really? Would he have been just as Lucky without that Product?? Doesn't matter because you will be hard pressed to make him believe otherwise lol...I'vbe talked before about the Guys wearing the $300 scent suits to their stands and just a few days before dumped corn and left the corn bag string that smells like kerosene laying on the ground and wonder what happened but anyway....What I do and laugh if you want. Now I'm not bragging but usually IF I'M PATIENT!!!! I close the Deal on the Buck I'm after...2 of the 3 Bucks I said I would shoot last year, I did!! and 1 came from 45 acres and the other from 17 with pressure all around me and the High Buck that I call a 10 pointer, I shot Christmas Eve..He almost made it lol!! Are they Monsters? NO!! But the mast mature Bucks I have in my area....But..The Earth Scent Wafers by HS Strut that are potent and come 3 to a canister....Eack time I check my Camera I'll put a fresh 1 out and retrieve the other 1 to recharge in the canister...I run 3 cameras so 2 canisters work well and I always put the used 1 on the bottom to keep it simple..I do this everytime I check my cameras and I also keep my Hunting clothes in a airtight container with these same wafers...Deer are creatures of habit so once they get used to the fresh earth smell and it doesn't seem out of place to them...I simply go Hunt...Do I kill Big Deer everytime I go out? Nope!! But along with Rubber Boots, I'm convinced this trick has put the deer I'm hoping to see In front of me during legal light because they have got accustomed to the dirt smell and if anything it tells them, theres fresh Corn out!!! Or you could just leave a corn bag string that's been laying in grease and oil on someones Farm all year lol...BTW, I have tried more products than I care to mention and Trophy Rock gets my Vote!!!!! Good Luck
    Wide 7
    2nd Tag of 2013
    1 I didnt get
    Big Boy I was after, Got countless videos of him but always in middle of night