Every year, deer hunters set their sights on having a mature buck walk within range and being able to make a good shot to harvest the animal. They are consumed with these thoughts and dreams throughout much, if not all of the year. For some, they are able to reach their goals for the season while others are left waiting for next year. For Casey, a tag was placed on a mature buck, but not in a way that any deer hunter wants to happen.
The story started during August when Casey, Chase, and friend, Darren Boudreaux, decided to lease a property in west-central Illinois. The property was scouted, stands were hung, and cameras were placed as the season quickly approached. The guys had high hopes for their new property and knew that it would only be a matter of time before someone had an opportunity at a mature buck.
As deer hunters, we often become very close to the deer that we manage for. Names are given to the deer and it’s fun to recognize one from a tree stand that you’ve only seen pictures of. We manage for whitetail because we want what the herd to be numerous and healthy. On November 12th of this year, an aspect of the property was effecting the deer herd. Coyotes had a mature buck pinned in a pond. Upon first seeing the buck, they could tell he was in bad shape and instantly knew they needed to do what they could to help. Given the situation, the camera takes a back seat. Casey was able to harvest the buck and after getting him to shore, it was obvious the deer was suffering. There is no way of knowing just how long the coyotes had been after this deer, but numerous scuffs, scratches, and bite marks made it obvious that this deer was swimming in the pond because it was the only safety he had found from the predators. This is definitely not the way Casey, or any deer hunter, wants to harvest a mature whitetail, but he did what needed to be done. You can bet Casey, Chase, and Darren are going to do their best to eliminate the potential for this to happen again next year.