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What animals have you had come right up to you while you were hunting.

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  • What animals have you had come right up to you while you were hunting.

    What animals have you had come right up to you while you were hunting.

  • #2
    Like came up to me after seeing me or just accidentally walked close to me? I've had raccoons and squirrels sit 5 feet from me gnawing on something to eat while staring at me the entire time. If you just mean walked close by, than everything that I was not hunting for at that particular time! Last year I swapped my bow during archery season for a .22 when squirrels were going crazy. When I got back the squirrels were gone and I had deer walk within 10 yards of me within 15 minutes.

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    • #3
      I have had several close encounters, but the most memorable was when my son and I were turkey hunting. We had a skunk walk by so closely it literally rubbed us as it passed. My son was very young at that time and I was worried about him moving and us getting a load in the face. He did great though and I breathed a huge sigh of relief after it walked on. We were just starting to replay what had happened when I heard something coming down the same trail. Skunk #2 did the exact same thing and brushed against us just like the first one. The only difference was this one hung around for what seemed an eternity as it played in a pool of water to our immediate left. No way did I think were were getting out of that scent free. To this day, we still call the tree were were leaning on the skunk tree.

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      • #4
        Possums, raccoons, and squirrels mostly. Most memorable was a ruffed grouse that strutted around for maybe ten minutes then moved on.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by JM View Post
          Like came up to me after seeing me or just accidentally walked close to me? I've had raccoons and squirrels sit 5 feet from me gnawing on something to eat while staring at me the entire time. If you just mean walked close by, than everything that I was not hunting for at that particular time! Last year I swapped my bow during archery season for a .22 when squirrels were going crazy. When I got back the squirrels were gone and I had deer walk within 10 yards of me within 15 minutes.
          Isn't that the truth. Doesn't it seem like animals somehow know when a hunter is in the woods? I can't count how many times I've been out deer hunting and seen what seemed like dozens of squirrels, but when I went back to that same spot squirrel hunting - very few made an appearance.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by 4everAutumn View Post
            I have had several close encounters, but the most memorable was when my son and I were turkey hunting. We had a skunk walk by so closely it literally rubbed us as it passed. My son was very young at that time and I was worried about him moving and us getting a load in the face. He did great though and I breathed a huge sigh of relief after it walked on. We were just starting to replay what had happened when I heard something coming down the same trail. Skunk #2 did the exact same thing and brushed against us just like the first one. The only difference was this one hung around for what seemed an eternity as it played in a pool of water to our immediate left. No way did I think were were getting out of that scent free. To this day, we still call the tree were were leaning on the skunk tree.
            You're a braver man than I! I would've run as fast as I could in the opposite direction if I saw a skunk coming my way.

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            • #7
              I think we've all had squirrels just about jump on our heads, but the following two are why I'm a scent control believer.
              My most heart pounding encounter was my first day ever archery hunting. Sat the ground pushed back in some brush on a 5 gallon bucket. Buck with a single spindly 3 pt antler comes grazing out into the clearing in front of me. 30 yards away. At the time, I wasn't comfortable with shooting past 20 while hunting. It was 30 minutes into my first archery hunt, and he was a poor specimen. I'm thinking this is too easy (it was many years later when I finally took an archery buck). After a while, he decides there's something up with that patch of bushes. Stops and stares at me for a bit, stamps a back leg a couple of times, then comes walking in nostrils flared and sniffing. Literally gets to the point of sniffing my face and I could have grabbed his nose. Decides all is kosher and walks back out to feed in front of me. My buddy didn't believe me when he came back looking for me. "Look down Dave, those are fresh hoof prints in our boot prints from this morning."

              Near that that same spot (different side of same clearing) a guy came walking by with his golden retriever late one morning. Man passed within 20 feet of me. Dog was walking the field edge as dogs do and was within 10' and I was again sitting the ground. Neither ever registered me.

              A funny recent encounter I had was at the end of a morning hunt this fall I got out of my stand and went to the trail to meet my buddy and walk out together. Full camo and facemask standing with my back against a tree. Here comes a feral cat stalking down the trail in full hunt mode. Slink a dozen steps, stop, look and listen, slink a few more.. repeat. I watched this for about 30 yards until it was practically between my feet at which point I threw my arms out and yelled "boo!". I've never heard a cat make a sound like that before. But it practically teleported out of sight.

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              • #8
                Squirrels (within 3 feet). Deer (within 10 feet). I've had turkeys pretty close, and of course lots of small birds. My brother had a chickadee land on his cap while we were turkey hunting one time. I've had chipmunks and other small rodents within arm's reach too.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by JM View Post
                  Like came up to me after seeing me or just accidentally walked close to me? I've had raccoons and squirrels sit 5 feet from me gnawing on something to eat while staring at me the entire time. If you just mean walked close by, than everything that I was not hunting for at that particular time! Last year I swapped my bow during archery season for a .22 when squirrels were going crazy. When I got back the squirrels were gone and I had deer walk within 10 yards of me within 15 minutes.
                  Was it Mr. Heavey (maybe not, I feel like he's described his place as more suburban)a few years back who penned an article about finally getting his backyard buck. The buck would come out when he was working in the yard regularly, but if he went out back to hunt he never saw it. I might be misremembering, but he bagged it the day he decided to load his gear up in a wheelbarrow or otherwise play the part of gardener until he got to the woodline and then got ready to hunt.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by jcarlin View Post
                    I think we've all had squirrels just about jump on our heads, but the following two are why I'm a scent control believer.
                    My most heart pounding encounter was my first day ever archery hunting. Sat the ground pushed back in some brush on a 5 gallon bucket. Buck with a single spindly 3 pt antler comes grazing out into the clearing in front of me. 30 yards away. At the time, I wasn't comfortable with shooting past 20 while hunting. It was 30 minutes into my first archery hunt, and he was a poor specimen. I'm thinking this is too easy (it was many years later when I finally took an archery buck). After a while, he decides there's something up with that patch of bushes. Stops and stares at me for a bit, stamps a back leg a couple of times, then comes walking in nostrils flared and sniffing. Literally gets to the point of sniffing my face and I could have grabbed his nose. Decides all is kosher and walks back out to feed in front of me. My buddy didn't believe me when he came back looking for me. "Look down Dave, those are fresh hoof prints in our boot prints from this morning."

                    Near that that same spot (different side of same clearing) a guy came walking by with his golden retriever late one morning. Man passed within 20 feet of me. Dog was walking the field edge as dogs do and was within 10' and I was again sitting the ground. Neither ever registered me.

                    A funny recent encounter I had was at the end of a morning hunt this fall I got out of my stand and went to the trail to meet my buddy and walk out together. Full camo and facemask standing with my back against a tree. Here comes a feral cat stalking down the trail in full hunt mode. Slink a dozen steps, stop, look and listen, slink a few more.. repeat. I watched this for about 30 yards until it was practically between my feet at which point I threw my arms out and yelled "boo!". I've never heard a cat make a sound like that before. But it practically teleported out of sight.
                    How the heck could you hold still enough when the deer was that close? I'd be afraid to even blink!

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by 4everAutumn View Post
                      I have had several close encounters, but the most memorable was when my son and I were turkey hunting. We had a skunk walk by so closely it literally rubbed us as it passed. My son was very young at that time and I was worried about him moving and us getting a load in the face. He did great though and I breathed a huge sigh of relief after it walked on. We were just starting to replay what had happened when I heard something coming down the same trail. Skunk #2 did the exact same thing and brushed against us just like the first one. The only difference was this one hung around for what seemed an eternity as it played in a pool of water to our immediate left. No way did I think were were getting out of that scent free. To this day, we still call the tree were were leaning on the skunk tree.
                      Everyone worries about predators like wolves, bears, coyotes but in my book the skunk up close is worse and skunks are much more widespread. One evening walking out without using a flashlight there was something in the trail I thought was a raccoon and continued closing the distance to find myself a few feet from a skunk. I executed a hasty beating cheeks retreat narrowly escaping the essence attack.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        In the last 50 years I can't think of any that have not come within spitting distance at one time or another. The most common are deer. One time my partner (Bill) and I met up after a long morning deer hunt. Sat down against a large oak to compare notes and rest. Bill fell asleep, guess my talking has that affect on some. Soon a small buck walked into the area and browsed acorns right to the end of Bill's boots. I'd been elbowing Bill trying to wake him and finally he woke startled at the sight of the buck so close. The buck bolted alert making that alarm wheeze... In case anyone has wondered, yes, snot comes out when they do that. Bill was covered with greenish goo.

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                        • #13
                          I was leaning up against a tree when I felt like something was watching me. Gradually looked over my shoulder and there was a deer, stretched out to get the scent of me. She was about a foot from my shoulder.
                          I was deer hunting when I heard a ruckus just over a rise. It sounded like a couple of cats in a fight. Soon they started to go by me, 20yds away on a logging road - 25 tom turkeys, single file. One saw me and stepped out of line and starred at me for a minute. Finally, stepped back in line. In about 5 minutes something must have scared them and they came back flying, went a little past me and landed in the trees. It is not really landing, it is more like a controlled crash into the trees. It was really a sight to see.
                          I was feeding peanuts to a squirrel at a outside food bar. He would come down for one and take it back to the tree. One time I kept my hand closed around the peanut - don't ever do that. He really pinched my hand to get me to open it.
                          At camp I have had humming birds land on my shoulder.
                          A guy I know was sitting against a big tree when another hunter came from the opposite direction, right up to the back of the same tree, dropped his pants and took a dump. He left the same direction he came from. What a way to ruin your day.

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by 4everAutumn View Post
                            I have had several close encounters, but the most memorable was when my son and I were turkey hunting. We had a skunk walk by so closely it literally rubbed us as it passed. My son was very young at that time and I was worried about him moving and us getting a load in the face. He did great though and I breathed a huge sigh of relief after it walked on. We were just starting to replay what had happened when I heard something coming down the same trail. Skunk #2 did the exact same thing and brushed against us just like the first one. The only difference was this one hung around for what seemed an eternity as it played in a pool of water to our immediate left. No way did I think were were getting out of that scent free. To this day, we still call the tree were were leaning on the skunk tree.
                            I'd like to claim brave, but brave had nothing to do with it! They popped out of the weeds to the right of us walking along a small game trail that we happened to be sitting on. They were on top of us before we could make a move and we were pinned down. Of all the smells in the world, skunk is the worst in my opinion. I had no doubt were were wearing it home.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by jcarlin View Post
                              I think we've all had squirrels just about jump on our heads, but the following two are why I'm a scent control believer.
                              My most heart pounding encounter was my first day ever archery hunting. Sat the ground pushed back in some brush on a 5 gallon bucket. Buck with a single spindly 3 pt antler comes grazing out into the clearing in front of me. 30 yards away. At the time, I wasn't comfortable with shooting past 20 while hunting. It was 30 minutes into my first archery hunt, and he was a poor specimen. I'm thinking this is too easy (it was many years later when I finally took an archery buck). After a while, he decides there's something up with that patch of bushes. Stops and stares at me for a bit, stamps a back leg a couple of times, then comes walking in nostrils flared and sniffing. Literally gets to the point of sniffing my face and I could have grabbed his nose. Decides all is kosher and walks back out to feed in front of me. My buddy didn't believe me when he came back looking for me. "Look down Dave, those are fresh hoof prints in our boot prints from this morning."

                              Near that that same spot (different side of same clearing) a guy came walking by with his golden retriever late one morning. Man passed within 20 feet of me. Dog was walking the field edge as dogs do and was within 10' and I was again sitting the ground. Neither ever registered me.

                              A funny recent encounter I had was at the end of a morning hunt this fall I got out of my stand and went to the trail to meet my buddy and walk out together. Full camo and facemask standing with my back against a tree. Here comes a feral cat stalking down the trail in full hunt mode. Slink a dozen steps, stop, look and listen, slink a few more.. repeat. I watched this for about 30 yards until it was practically between my feet at which point I threw my arms out and yelled "boo!". I've never heard a cat make a sound like that before. But it practically teleported out of sight.
                              In Watership Down, the state that rabbits go into under extreme stress where they lock up and don't move is referred to as "tharn" if I recall. I think I understood at that moment what it meant. No danger, but my muscles were locked and my heart was hammering. I've jumped into an icy creek after seeing someone's 4 year old disappear into it while sledding at night without thinking about it.
                              That deer had me paralyzed.

                              Comment

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