Shed antlers tell many tales to savvy hunters who listen.

Locating a hefty piece of bone poking through melting snow tells you that a big buck is in the area and probably survived the winter. Most likely, the deer’s antlers will be larger in the fall, so now’s the time to begin making a plan. Food, cover, and hunting pressure can help tell you whether the deer wintered here, was forced into this location by late-season food sources, or was forced to seek refuge from roaming dogs or coyotes.

Aside from great information, hunting sheds is great exercise and an exciting way to relive the memories from last year. As you walk about, look for fallen trees or other physical changes that may alter deer movements, as well as the best stand placements. Where is the best place to look for shed antlers? Bernie Barringer gives his five best bets in this Whitetail Journal post.

The link between where you are likely to find a buck’s shed antlers and where you are likely to shoot that buck in the fall is way overrated. In the winter when the antlers are dropping, the buck’s life revolves around food and cover. These are the keys to where he spends his time. If you are going to find his sheds, these areas are where you should concentrate your efforts. High-Carb Foods OAS_AD(“Middle”); Winter is a rough time for whitetail bucks. They are run down from the rigors of the rut and they need energy to fight off the cold. Foods high in carbohydrates provide quick energy and can easily be stored as fat. The buck’s stomach tells him what he needs to eat and he seeks it out. Corn and soybeans are buck magnets in the winter for this very reason. Find the right foods and you’ll find where the deer are concentrated.

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