A popular tactic for early season whitetail, is hunting over food sources: bean fields, field plots if you can plant them, wheat fields, etc.
There are a couple of things you really need to pay attention to when hunting food sources in order to hunt them effectively.
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Tips for Hunting Food Sources
First, you don’t necessarily want to be right on top of the food source, ie bean field. Typically, depending on how secluded it is, deer will be back in staging areas before working their way out to the food source. Often times, the food sources are out in the open with no cover. Mature bucks will not feel safe out in the open and prefer a secluded area, whereas does and younger bucks will venture out a bit. Look for pockets of woods that line the food source.
Second, try and find a secluded food source! Something surrounded by woods, far from a road, tucked away is definitely best.
Third, you need to plan how you will get to and from your stand without spooking the deer. Getting out of the stand is definitely the trickier task, because when you’re leaving, likely there will be deer out in the field & you don’t want to bump them.
Lastly, understanding wind direction is very important when hunting food sources early in the season. Try and set yourself up where the wind will be blowing down the tree line, or into a field where deer are less likely to be.