Pro Tips The first hour of dawn and the last hour of dusk are magical and highly productive deer hunting times. The whitetail deer prefers the low-light periods surrounding sunrise and sunset. However, under some conditions, hunting in the middle of the day or all day long can be very effective. If you are fortunate enough to live where the deer season extends into December or January, you can take advantage of the secondary rut.

So what's hot - rubs, scrapes, trails, bedding areas or feeding areas Actually they all are. For bow hunters, right now is not too early to start your scouting for the upcoming bow seasons. The early archery seasons are just around the corner. Hunters with an unfilled tag as the season winds down are going to have to hunt harder and smarter to find a trophy buck.

The whitetail's senses of smell and hearing receive so much attention that we often forget its vision. A lot of Team Realtree Pros prefer to do their deer scouting for the next season immediately after the current season's end. Everyone likes to see a beautiful autumn sunset over a field or meadow. Late in the deer season, that's all you are likely to see from a stand overlooking an open field.

Last minute scouting should be more like last minute looking. Many hunters believe rubs to be the most reliable form of buck sign. Whether you hunt with gun or bow, there is usually a time when the animal presents the optimum shooting opportunity. How can you tell which path in a network of deer trails is the Don't ever believe that a mature whitetail buck is dumb even when in heavy and hard rut. Many areas have deer seasons that extend very late into the winter. The key to successful hunting is knowing what has happened before this final inning Anytime after the hunting pressure starts and particularly during the late season, it pays to check small pockets of cover.

Deer drives are an excellent way for a coordinated group of hunters to take deer during the midday and other low-movement periods. Scouting is nothing more than gathering good information that helps us make good hunting decisions. Making good decisions about the best places to hunt is much easier when you have the facts.