If you’ve ever wondered why deer don’t travel uphill in high winds, this article is for you. In high winds, deer become very skittish and find it hard to find and follow scent trails. This results in deer limiting their travel patterns to sheltered areas. But what exactly happens when the wind increases? Why don’t deer move in 15 mph winds? Find out the truth!
Whitetail deer travel with the wind at their back
Although hunters generally refuse to hunt in conditions that don’t have wind, studies have shown that even zero-mph winds are not good for whitetails. In fact, experienced hunters believe that even high winds are worse for deer than zero-mph winds because deer are nasal creatures that cannot move around well without air movement. Moreover, whitetails are not very interested in hunting on days when the wind is high, which means that they don’t enjoy it much.
For this reason, it’s vital to know the direction and speed of the wind before heading out to hunt in a particular area. If the wind is blowing heavily, whitetails will likely spend the next day feeding and will rest in a nearby area. For a better chance of spotting a deer during a hunt, it’s helpful to locate the deer on a trail.
In lite to moderate winds, deer move about the same as in normal conditions. But, if the wind is particularly high, you shouldn’t hunt in open stands. Instead, hunt in downwind thickets and wait for the wind to die down. This strategy may work well if the deer’s concentration is in downwind thickets. It may also work in cases of wind-suppressed whitetails.
Despite the countless findings that indicate that the moon phase has no significant impact on the movements of whitetails, scientific research has yet to find conclusive evidence for its effect. Although many hunters still place great importance on the moon phase and wind speed, the fact remains that the moon phase has no discernible effect on deer movement. In fact, the moon phase doesn’t affect deer movements, but it’s the wind speed that has the biggest impact.
While deer are highly sensitive to wind, they are also very sensitive to scent. Therefore, you should avoid hunting in locations where the wind may carry your scent. It’s also important to find a tree stand with good ground cover in an area that has a lot of wind to avoid being exposed to a scent. The early season is best for bowhunting because hunting pressure is low.
They don’t travel upwind or downwind
When it’s time to hunt deer, be sure to choose a location where the wind will not carry the scent. The deer that you want to hunt don’t typically travel upwind or downwind, but they will still be able to smell you even from far away. Deer will leave if they smell you, so make sure you choose a low-lying area with dense cover. If you’re not sure where to hunt, use white chalk to mark the direction of the wind so that the scent dissipates before the deer sees it.
The results of this study were based on GPS collar data and survey responses. In October 2013, wind speeds rarely exceeded 12 mph, so the researchers couldn’t determine if heavy winds affected deer movement. But the results of the study were consistent across different wind conditions. In fact, when the deer were observed, they moved more toward the direction of the wind. That suggests that the deer movement in a 15 mph wind would not be as significant as they were under normal conditions.
The deer use the wind to their advantage when they’re walking. They’ll circle downwind of a new location in an area they’re not familiar with. When the wind isn’t working in your favor, they’ll hold off on moving. While they don’t necessarily travel upwind or downwind, they’ll use wind currents and cover to their advantage.
Despite the results of the Penn State study, windy days aren’t the worst days to hunt deer. However, the strength of the wind will affect the location of the deer in your area. When the wind is less than five mph, deer will be more active. In fact, it’s estimated that deer move less when they’re in windy areas than during calm weather.
In addition to staying out of the wind, deer prefer flat swamps and wide grass fields. While traveling, they’ll seek the wind on their backs. Since deer use their senses to survive, they won’t move much when the wind is 15 mph or more. As a result, they’ll usually bed down once the wind has slowed down.
They don’t travel up or down a hill
A recent study from Penn State University found that deer do not move as much when the wind is blowing. Researchers observed movement patterns on days with higher wind speeds compared to those with lower winds. Deer did not move up or down a hill more during days with higher wind speeds. However, this does not mean that deer are not affected by wind. They are still affected by wind and should be protected from it when possible.
One way to determine the strength of the wind is to look for deer signs. They often travel in signs to feed and drink. During periods of 15 mph wind, they do not travel up or down a hill. Rather, they cross the slope on the opposite side of the mountain. This is because the wind is stronger on their side. If a deer were to travel up a hill in 15 mph wind, it would cross over the slope on the opposite side.
If the wind is brisk, you should wait until after sundown before setting up your stand. Thermals typically top out during peak movement times, such as dawn and dusk. This makes some spots unhuntable, while others can be excellent. If you can gauge thermals, you can have a chance of finding deer despite the chilly air. The problem with using thermals at dusk is that the wind will die late afternoon. In addition, a steady breeze will blow away the thermals.
Another way to use the wind in your favor is to be on the leeward side of a hill or ridge/crest above it. You’ll be out of the wind when you are sitting on the bottom of a hill, but it will not be nearly as effective as a position where the wind is calm. The wind may even throw off the scent of white-tailed deer.
They don’t travel up or down a mountain
If you’re planning to go hunting in the mountains, remember that the wind will disrupt deer movement, especially at high elevations. Winds of 15 mph and greater will often stop deer from moving. You can tell when the wind speed increases by whistling in the wires and resistance when walking into it. The opposite is true for dead calm days. Deer movement is most effective when the wind speed is between five and fifteen mph.
Research suggests that deer will move to the lee side of the habitat that blocks high winds. This behavior is consistent with the observed movements of deer. When wind speeds increase, deer will move further away from the habitat. Hunters should target the areas where deer are most likely to move. However, it is not enough to simply hunt in windy locations. Windy conditions can lead to hunting opportunities that are not productive for deer.
If you want to take advantage of the wind’s influence, set up your stand in such a way that the wind is perpendicular to the deer’s travel path. This allows small deer to pass you and keeps your scent from reaching the deer. A small deer can get around an obstacle that’s in the way. A 15 mph wind can be a powerful obstacle for deer hunters.
During a rainy day, the weather may affect deer movement, but the activity level is generally higher during windier days. The bucks, on the other hand, do not care much about weather conditions. Males, however, do appear to have greater sensitivity to wind than females. Furthermore, wind combined with rain increases buck activity. While wind alone is not a strong deterrent, the combination of rain also contributes to their activity levels.
The same reasoning applies to the direction of movement. Deer tend to move more in a stronger wind on a mountain when the thermals are strong. The opposite is true during calm days. Deer aren’t pushed to the side of the mountain in 15 mph winds. A strong wind can hamper deer’s ability to see. It also increases the danger of predators.