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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
What do I need to know for shotgun deer hunting on public land in Illinois?

I hate to ask general questions like this, but I am not sure where to find the info I need.

Here is the longer version: I have my FOID. Been out alot for squirrel, pheasant, dove, and rabbit using a borrowed shotgun. This borrowed shotgun does not shoot slugs.

Some hunting buddies are planning to apply for deer tags this year and invited me. Planning to borrow my dad's long unused shotgun...take it to a gunsmith to give it the once over and see if it can shoot slugs.

I guess what I am looking for is a Dummies Guide to Shotgun Deer Season. Never done it, so I am wondering what one needs to keep in mind. General pointer, web links for beginners, books, etc. Anything to give me a basic education.

Thanks

Rick
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Mr. Slayer:

Thanks for taking the time to reply! I appreciate it.

It appears that I was not clear in my request...

1) while not required by law because of my grand old age, I have taken the Il hunter safety course.

2) I hunt, on average, 4 days a week, from September thru February, on public and private land, so, I am not ignorant of hunting small game, nor polices and procedures of permits and public land.


What I am ignorant of, is the Deer species. I am looking for tips, pointers, details, and education for getting started in deer hunting, specifically shotgunning (vs bow, muzzleload and handgun) on public land.

Thanks.

Rick
 
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Excuse me...When you said you were going to use your father's gun..I just figured you were a youngin...So if i'm correct here your looking for hunting tactic's...
If this is the case....There is much you need to learn & it's too much to be listing on a message board..But what I can tell you is that you need to learn the importance of feeding area's,bedding area's,funnel's,inside point's,outside point's,trestand's,blind's,grunt's bleat's,snort's,rattling,etc,etc,etc...
Well the best thing you can do is buy some magazine's that are devoted to deer hunting....I would reccomend bowhunter magazine because even though you'll be using a shotgun...Bowhunting tactic's will teach you how to get closer to deer as so you can get a high percentage shot off...There are also video's out that will teach you the proper way of using call's & rattle's...Some video's also come with a purchase of said call's...

I hope this help's..
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
No problem with the age confusion thing... like I said, it was me who was not clear!

Thanks for the info. I read not too many hunting mags, as they seem to focus mostly on deer, and, until now, I have not pursued them. I will start there for info.

Thanks again.

Rick
 

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:)2 very good info from deer-slayer, all that i could add is your older shot-gun could
shoot slugs. it's a smooth bore and most slugs are rifled to fly striaght, just buy
some newer glow sights(front and rear) to
attach to your rib. if no rib on your barrel
you can buy just a barrel w/sights for most
guns.. the deer will teach you many lessons
over the years..good luck
 
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OHHHHH yes they will teach you a lot...
I missed a 10 pointer the season last...
Thought I had the perfect setup..Was hunting from an elevated position...Sun was behind me..The buck walked right where I wanted him to..When he walked behind the big tree that I was hoping he'd walk behind...I drew my bow back..I never thought about my shadow...Well it was right in front of him when he went behind that tree..He just stuck his head out from behind it never exposing his vital's...I had one shot @ his chest...but it was a low percentage shot & had to have been a perfect shot..Eventually I had to release my draw because I lost the show down..He never bolted away...just trotted about 40 yards then conti9nued walking..Unfortunatly...this all happened the day before the first shotgun season...I went back there...Saw sign's he was still working the area...But because of the shotgun season...It threw his pattern's off...Now when hunting from a trestand I take my shadow into consideration...
 

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Well, I have friends who have done shotgun on public land. I'll stick to archery.
1) Apply for Tags VERY early. Make sure you apply for the Specific area. i.e., Some parks have specific tags, and won't accept a county tag.
2) Expect to stand in a Lottery line after you were lucky enough to get tags, and remember if you get skunked for going out hunting each of your 3-4 day season. You just lost your tag money. i.e. Expect to drive 2hrs+ stand in line and either wait to go out in a stand-by line or just drive back home. Just like I do after trying to get to pheasant hunting @ Kanakee.

Good Luck -
 

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Rick, I tend to disagree slightly with Deerslayer. If you're hunting deer on public land with a shotgun, first and foremost you're going to want to get a topo map.

You're looking for escape routes and funnel areas. I like to find several prime spots either in deep or near the edges (my preference). Most hunters go in a fair distance and set-up. If you either hang back on the edges or go in super deep you'll increase your odds.

Secondly, look at the parking lots where other hunters are coming in. You're going to want to use other hunters to your advantage. Try to figure out where they're going to go and where they'll be pushing the deer.

Next, stay on stand as long as possible. Especially between 10 and 2 pm. I've got three near B&C bucks taken on public land, and all three were taken between these times. And switch between your other "prime locations" if you start to lose confidence. You MUST keep your confidence up!

In a nutshell, with all the hunters entering the woods, the deer are going to figure things out really quickly. Bedding and feeding areas are a good starting point to locate the general area for good bucks. But, covering good thick funnels and escape routes will exponentially increase your odds over hunting bedding or feeding areas. Trust me.

The Glo-dot was very good advice. A rifled barrel is nice but w/o a scope it's a waste of money. With a front and rear sight, you should be able to shoot out to 50 yards. Which, if you're hunting the thick stuff, should be more than enough coverage.

Lastly, practice shooting with the new set-up (not to state the obvious!) Good Luck!
 
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All GREAT advice, let me add...Learn to identify Deer sign, scat, scrapes, rubs, beds, you can find all the greatest areas in the world but if you cant identify the signs that the critters leave behind you'll never know you were there! spend some time just walking through the area you'll be hunting this fall looking for sign, you'll be glad you did come opening day!
 
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