Deer Pattern You Back

Lee Lakosky says hunters need consistent pressure on deer woods

Deer Pattern You Back
Deer Pattern You Back

Walking past a window, Lee Lakosky had an “a-ha moment,” and it’s changed the way he views deer hunting pressure.

Hunters are notorious for wanting to spend time in the woods, scouting, breaking down the area and patterning the deer they will be hunting. Experts say to keep in mind while you are doing these, the deer are patterning you.

That knowledge is something Lakosky of “Crush with Lee and Tiffany” said can help deer hunters. On a podcast with The Hunt Fish Journal of Ohio, Lakosky said that fact helps dispel the riding notion to never go onto your deer property before hunting season.

“I think you don’t want no pressure, you want consistent pressure,” he said. “We’re always thinking how we have to be so low pressure, low pressure. It’s what they get used to all year long.”


His realization came from continued observation of deer, even through a window. When someone walked past the window at Tiffany’s mother’s house, deer would run from a feeder about 50 yards away. But with repeated comings and goings, the deer are now used to the human activity and don’t move as much, even when Lee’s truck roars past.


“I bet you could feed them out of your hand if you tried,” Lee said, “every day just getting closer, and closer. They’re bedding all over their yard. And it’s been a short period of time from walking past the window and them running off.”

Lee and Tiffany do a lot of prep work on their 600 acres of farmland in southeastern Iowa, and Lee also sees that their presence has become commonplace for the deer.

Lee said the deer were awful skiddish when they first moved there. They live in the state’s largest county yet it doesn’t have one stoplight. The pressure on deer there is low, unlike Pike County, a famous hunting county 100 miles south in Illinois, where a number of Boone and Crockett bucks are taken.

“There’s 92 outfitters in Pike County; there’s probably not 92 bow hunters in my county,” Lee said. “We have a lot of deer dying of old age. Pressure just makes them more nocturnal, and gets them pretty spooky.”


The deer still run off when Lee and Tiffany run a four-wheeler through their acreage. He scatters any grouping when he’s out planting, fertilizing, mowing or checking game cams, the difference is now they return quickly.

“I’ve noticed five minutes after I’m gone, those deer are back out,” he said. “Those deer get used to it. When we get to hunting season, do we hunt it the same way? When we get to hunting season, it doesn’t change at all.”

Lee points to Wisconsin and how heavy pressure there on opening day of gun season changes deer activity. He says the opener is like a national holiday as everyone hits the deer woods.


“Over there, the pumpkin patch comes out -- every orange suit -- and those deer know something is different,” he said. “Day two of the season is totally different than day one.”

So as he tries to get into the heads of deer, even speaking what he thinks they’re thinking, he’s a believer his presence has relaxed the deer to humans being on the land.

“I think if I didn’t go into those fields all summer long, and I went into hunt, ‘Whoops, somebody’s in here. Something is different,’ “ he said. “Our deer don’t know anything is different that we’re doing, whether it’s July 1 or Nov. 1, because it never changes for them.”

Even when they hunt during muzzleloader season, Lee said they never linger on the property. It’s one shot, one deer, get it and get out.

He also makes a point to allow the deer a sanctuary. The Lakoskys will only enter the timber stands during turkey season or when they’re hunting sheds.

“I don’t go into the timber,” he said. “If I go in the field, I want them to run off and feel safe in the timber. They’ve got to have sanctuaries on your place.”

Lee said he first started to notice this trend when they began filming “Crush with Lee & Tiffany.” He said the deer wouldn’t come out of the timber to the fields until last light. With their continued presence, the deer got less and less camera shy.

“Oh, that’s just Lee and Tiffany, they’re here all the time,” he said. “So, I think you’d be way better off going into your place once a week, once a week, once a week.

“Those deer get used to it. They smell you. ‘Oh, that’s just Lee.’ I think you don’t want no pressure, you want consistent pressure. You don’t need to be invisible. If you’ve been there enough, they’re OK with you being there.”

And that’s when their rigorous scent control measures come into play. The Crush crew goes to great lengths to make sure they don’t tip off the whitetails during the season. Now, Lee’s pretty sure the deer and their great sense of scents can still make him out, but he feels them getting a snootful of him all year long helps trick them when they’re hunting.

They’ll stop, they’ll smell you, the whole routine, then they’ll flip their tail then go through,” Lee said. “They’ve smelled you every single week, but it’s much fainter now. ‘Oh, he must have been here 10 minutes ago,’ or ‘he must be up at the barn 200 yards away,’ instead of sitting up in the tree 10 yards away. That’s why we get away with so much.

“Without any scent control, they’d be gone. They think it’s old or you’re a lot farther away, or they’d blow and go.”

So Lee says to visit your hunting property, check the cams, tend to food plots, etc, make those deer learn the pattern that it’s normal for you to be there. Then once you’ve gotten into their heads, you have a better chance to get their head.

"Crush with Lee & Tiffany" show page

Go to 2013 Deer Camp

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.

Recommended Articles

See More Recommendations

Popular Videos

Mustad

Mustad's Saltwater Jig Lineup

Russ Whisler shows OSG's Lynn Burkhead the innovative features and great color schemes in Mustad's voluminous lineup of saltwater jigs introduced at ICAST 2019.

13 Fishing Pathfinder Weedless Walking Bait

13 Fishing Pathfinder Weedless Walking Bait

Fresh off catching the biggest bass in ICAST Cup history, 13 Fishing pro Jessie Mizell shows OSG's Lynn Burkhead the new Big Squirm soft plastic worm and the company's unique Pathfinder topwater walking bait that is totally weedless in design.

MLF BPT angler and former Classic champ Casey Ashley has been with Costa del Mar sunglasses his whole career. At ICAST 2019, he shows OSG writer Lynn Burkhead some new products and talks how to pick the right lens color for the water.

Berkley

Berkley's Frittside Crankbaits

World Fishing Network show host Chad LaChance had a chance to visit with legendary crankbait master David Fritts about his new Frittside crankbaits from Berkley. LaChance, host of the Fishful Thinker on WFN, also got a few cranking tips from Fritts, the former Classic and Forrest Wood Cup champion.

See More Popular Videos

Trending Articles

Experts agree record channel cat caught in 1949 was actually a blue catfish. Records

Upon Further Review: 70-Year-Old Catfish Record Voided

Game & Fish Digital Staff - May 22, 2019

Experts agree record channel cat caught in 1949 was actually a blue catfish.

Who needs live bait when the big 'gills are so eager to strike these lures? Other Freshwater

5 Great Lures For Bluegills

Stephen D. Carpenteri - March 10, 2011

Who needs live bait when the big 'gills are so eager to strike these lures?

North Dakota Game & Fish Department said the 16-9 walleye doesn't qualify for record. Walleye

Record-Sized Walleye Was Foul-Hooked, Agency Says

G&F Online Staff

North Dakota Game & Fish Department said the 16-9 walleye doesn't qualify for record.

Dozens of different bait types are commonly used for catfish, including these great options. Catfish

12 Great Catfish Baits

Jeff Samsel

Dozens of different bait types are commonly used for catfish, including these great options.

See More Trending Articles

More Whitetail

Advice can be tough to follow when a whitetail is on the ground. Whitetail

The Shakes: When a 6-Pointer Becomes a 3-Pointer

Jeff Johnston

Advice can be tough to follow when a whitetail is on the ground.

He found his 19-point 'buck' to be a doe as he started field-dressing. Whitetail

Missouri Hunter Bags Rare Antlered Doe

G&F Online Staff - December 02, 2019

He found his 19-point 'buck' to be a doe as he started field-dressing.

Here's a look at recent cases conservation officers faced in the field all across the nation. Conservation & Politics

Game Warden Stories: Antler Poachers, Naked Wanted Man, Secret-Note Tip

Game & Fish Staff - June 26, 2020

Here's a look at recent cases conservation officers faced in the field all across the nation.

A shot commits you to finding the animal. Your success depends on how you read the hit and the track. Whitetail

Aim True, Track Smart: Harvest Recovery

Wayne van Zwoll - December 26, 2019

A shot commits you to finding the animal. Your success depends on how you read the hit and the...

See More Whitetail

GET THE MAGAZINE Subscribe & Save

Digital Now Included!

SUBSCRIBE NOW

Give a Gift   |   Subscriber Services

PREVIEW THIS MONTH'S ISSUE

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.

Get Digital Access.

All Game & Fish subscribers now have digital access to their magazine content. This means you have the option to read your magazine on most popular phones and tablets.

To get started, click the link below to visit mymagnow.com and learn how to access your digital magazine.

Get Digital Access

Not a Subscriber?
Subscribe Now