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NEVER hunt a south wind???

kyler1945

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This thread is literally the entire point of the book.

It’s a dispassionate review of thousands upon thousands of hours of hunting, analyzed for every variable we tend to care about.

Shep does not recommend YOU not hunt when there’s a south wind. He just points out that given the fact he’s a doctor, has a family, likes to engage in other outdoor activities, and lives in south Alabama, the tradeoffs of hunting when the odds tell him not to, are not worth it.

he makes EXPLICITLY clear that wind direction has nothing to do with an uptick in daytime deer movement. It’s that it CORRELATES with warmer weather. He also makes EXPLICITLY clear that temperature reigns supreme in dictating day time deer movement, and that it’s RELATIVE.

That means that in the south, where it’s freakin swampy hot all year, temps hitting 40* cause a drastic increase in daytime deer movement. This only comes to light after doing multivariate analysis, and ruling out all of the other little things we THINK and FEEL make a difference. He also admits he doesn’t hunt up north, and can’t speak to TACTICS for hunting there. But that the temperature change RELATIVE to average temperature, and the temperature the day before, is what dictates the uptick in daytime deer movement. This leaves the door open for the “deer move more when it warms up after being below zero for three days” stuff.

the OP’s take from the book is literally the polar opposite of the message he’s trying to convey.

for MOST of the country for MOST of the time MOST people hunt, a southerly wind correlates with warmer temperatures,RELATIVELY speaking. And warmer temperatures, RELATIVE to AVERAGE temperatures, or temperatures on days BEFORE and AFTER the warm days, lead to diminished daytime deer movement.

remember, deer are nocturnal, generally speaking. This isn’t hunting lore. It’s biological fact. Of course there are exceptions, and deer move in daylight. Obviously, why else would we hunt? We look for anything that will cause deer to move more in daylight hours. Guess what makes deer move during daylight hours, more than anything else, in most of the country for most of deer season? Cooler weather.
 
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kyler1945

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Baton Rouge, La.
There isn’t a diet book that will make you lose weight. There isn’t a self help book that will make you get your life together. There isn’t a college degree that will make you good at a job or career. There’s just good information, that is available if you’re open minded, that will help you understand things better.

If you’re looking for a book to tell you exactly how to kill deer, well, you’re hunting for the wrong reasons...
 

mattsteg

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he makes EXPLICITLY clear that wind direction has nothing to do with deer movement. It’s that it CORRELATES with warmer weather. He also makes EXPLICITLY clear that temperature reigns supreme in dictating day time deer movement, and that it’s RELATIVE.
To be fair, you need to get through like 2/3 of the book before he confirms/admits that wind direction etc. don't seem to matter. He spends the first 2/3 of the book talking about how he (and others in his dataset) rarely see deer with south wind and how he's built his entire hunting process around that.

On one hand, if you pay close attention it's a very effective narrative device to realize how strongly it's worth following patterns if possible, on the other it's dedicating 2/3 of the book to a concept that he then declares the wrong one.
 

kyler1945

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Baton Rouge, La.
To be fair, you need to get through like 2/3 of the book before he confirms/admits that wind direction etc. don't seem to matter. He spends the first 2/3 of the book talking about how he (and others in his dataset) rarely see deer with south wind and how he's built his entire hunting process around that.

On one hand, if you pay close attention it's a very effective narrative device to realize how strongly it's worth following patterns if possible, on the other it's dedicating 2/3 of the book to a concept that he then declares the wrong one.
I think he does it on purpose, to illustrate how what’s happening in this thread can lead one to totally “miss the point”. It’s him admitting he’s “one of us” and banged his head against the wall trying to decipher what was going on. Rather than say “do this, trust me.”

that’s my opinion of course. but it makes sense to me to tell a good story, and Give context to where he ends up. He could’ve just published it in study form, and some folks might read it I guess.
 

mattsteg

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If you’re looking for a book to tell you exactly how to kill deer, well, you’re hunting for the wrong reasons...
You mean a book that, theoretically speaking, tells you how to plant food plots, bulldoze 400 yard shooting lanes huntable with a south wind, build a little house to shoot from (with plans!), and how to hang out and chill all day long waiting on a deer?
 

kyler1945

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Dec 4, 2016
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Baton Rouge, La.
You mean a book that, theoretically speaking, tells you how to plant food plots, bulldoze 400 yard shooting lanes huntable with a south wind, build a little house to shoot from (with plans!), and how to hang out and chill all day long waiting on a deer?
Haha he could’ve summed that all up with “stop hunting and go earn a 5 million bucks to buy property And set it up to take any guesswork out of hunting.”
 

BuckTown

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Dec 18, 2019
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297
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Central VA
To be fair, you need to get through like 2/3 of the book before he confirms/admits that wind direction etc. don't seem to matter. He spends the first 2/3 of the book talking about how he (and others in his dataset) rarely see deer with south wind and how he's built his entire hunting process around that.

On one hand, if you pay close attention it's a very effective narrative device to realize how strongly it's worth following patterns if possible, on the other it's dedicating 2/3 of the book to a concept that he then declares the wrong one.
I’ve finally got through the actual chapter about weather, right before the Equipment chapter. You are correct, it isn’t until this chapter he actually puts it in a way it’s not about the wind, but about the temperature. I definitely get on board with him on that. A south wind means warm weather for AL so that’s why he makes he statements about the wind early on. But yeah, his early statements about South wind had me a little lost for words until I finally grasped the point he was making. I really agree with his weather grading system as well, but admit I do sometimes hunt on “low production days” because I would rather be in a tree this time of year than on the water.
 

mattsteg

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I’ve finally got through the actual chapter about weather, right before the Equipment chapter. You are correct, it isn’t until this chapter he actually puts it in a way it’s not about the wind, but about the temperature. I definitely get on board with him on that. A south wind means warm weather for AL so that’s why he makes he statements about the wind early on. But yeah, his early statements about South wind had me a little lost for words until I finally grasped the point he was making. I really agree with his weather grading system as well, but admit I do sometimes hunt on “low production days” because I would rather be in a tree this time of year than on the water.
Yeah, it makes sense, and is ultimately an effective strategy to drive the point home (as long as you get deep enough in).
 

BackSpasm

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Apr 10, 2019
Messages
505
Location
Middle Tennessee
This thread is literally the entire point of the book.

It’s a dispassionate review of thousands upon thousands of hours of hunting, analyzed for every variable we tend to care about.

Shep does not recommend YOU not hunt when there’s a south wind. He just points out that given the fact he’s a doctor, has a family, likes to engage in other outdoor activities, and lives in south Alabama, the tradeoffs of hunting when the odds tell him not to, are not worth it.

he makes EXPLICITLY clear that wind direction has nothing to do with an uptick in daytime deer movement. It’s that it CORRELATES with warmer weather. He also makes EXPLICITLY clear that temperature reigns supreme in dictating day time deer movement, and that it’s RELATIVE.

That means that in the south, where it’s freakin swampy hot all year, temps hitting 40* cause a drastic increase in daytime deer movement. This only comes to light after doing multivariate analysis, and ruling out all of the other little things we THINK and FEEL make a difference. He also admits he doesn’t hunt up north, and can’t speak to TACTICS for hunting there. But that the temperature change RELATIVE to average temperature, and the temperature the day before, is what dictates the uptick in daytime deer movement. This leaves the door open for the “deer move more when it warms up after being below zero for three days” stuff.

the OP’s take from the book is literally the polar opposite of the message he’s trying to convey.

for MOST of the country for MOST of the time MOST people hunt, a southerly wind correlates with warmer temperatures,RELATIVELY speaking. And warmer temperatures, RELATIVE to AVERAGE temperatures, or temperatures on days BEFORE and AFTER the warm days, lead to diminished daytime deer movement.

remember, deer are nocturnal, generally speaking. This isn’t hunting lore. It’s biological fact. Of course there are exceptions, and deer move in daylight. Obviously, why else would we hunt? We look for anything that will cause deer to move more in daylight hours. Guess what makes deer move during daylight hours, more than anything else, in most of the country for most of deer season? Cooler weather.
This is a pretty nice summary. I also just got finished with the whole text. He does end up clarifying its not the south wind exactly but temperature that was driving his findings. I feel like it should've been mentioned earlier, perhaps. Thanks to @kyler1945 for the recommendation. I'm certain this read has expanded my understanding of deer.
 

SCSaddleman

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Apr 15, 2019
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I’ve heard the same stuff on east winds. Hunt when u can hunt just pick ur spots according to the wind direction
 

woodsdog2

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Jun 28, 2019
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If I never hunted south or especially southwest winds, I wouldn't hunt much at all. Most of my deer have been taken on a S, SW, WSW and SE wind because its the predominate wind direction here in WNY.
 

Kyrodan

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Oct 24, 2018
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I am too trying to wrap my head around this..but makes since..South wind usually means warmer weather in Iowa...in the late Fall and winter..that does not mean it will warm up much..still cold..in the South..where cold is 60 degrees, I can't see that being the same here in Iowa. but can say that yeah..wind from north makes it colder here..I am no pro by any means..but have taken most deer with a North wind I believe..who knows.how many us take that good of notes to see what the weather and wind are doing on every single hunt..what we saw..harvested///??? i mark it on huntstand when I sight one or harvest..thats it..
 

BackSpasm

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Joined
Apr 10, 2019
Messages
505
Location
Middle Tennessee
Having considered this a bit more, this is a prime example of how we as hunters are prone to "selection bias." In other words, because we use our prior experiences and information to CHOOSE which days we hunt based on the current conditions, we are prone to taking those experiences on select, filtered days and drawing conclusions about all hunting days.

For instance, if you never hunt east winds, you never kill a buck on a east wind. Therefore the data would appear to conclude that you shouldn't hunt east winds at all. Although this certainly isn't what the Dr. was doing at the beginning of his career, nor what was collected in his large hunter database, he admits that he has completely stopped hunting south winds as he gained experience. This cessation of hunting perceived "poor" conditions also correlated with an increase in experience and knowledge for the good doctor, further confounding this issue. (In other words, its possible that if he was to hunt south wind days with his current skill set, he may in fact see success that his younger self didn't.) I feel that hunting moon phases can lead to similar experiences for many hunters. If you save your "best moon days" to hunt your best spots, it makes sense that those days would appear to have the most movement and biggest bucks.

Obviously, there are clear environmental factors that affect deer movement. All you need is one trail camera set out for a season to realize that the amount of movement in a deer herd is variable. GPS collar studies of whitetails have confirmed this fact many times and revealed actual unbiased data about what environmental factors affect deer travel and feeding. However, it is our own inclination to jump to conclusions based on our limited experiences such as "deer don't move when its extremely windy", "they won't feed in the pouring rain" etc when really we typically have very little anecdotes from these conditions to prove these "gut" feelings and we may have a pile of experience in the conditions we personally consider "good."

If you have confidence in your approach and strategy, that alone will increase your success rate as you make decisive moves into dedicated kill spots. So if you feel like you need an east-north-east 6 mph wind on a 4 degree warming front with a rising barometer coinciding with a red over-the-shoulder falling harvest moon all happening on December 8th, and you kill deer consistently on that condition, more power to ya my friend.
 

mattsteg

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Having considered this a bit more, this is a prime example of how we as hunters are prone to "selection bias." In other words, because we use our prior experiences and information to CHOOSE which days we hunt based on the current conditions, we are prone to taking those experiences on select, filtered days and drawing conclusions about all hunting days.

For instance, if you never hunt east winds, you never kill a buck on a east wind. Therefore the data would appear to conclude that you shouldn't hunt east winds at all. Although this certainly isn't what the Dr. was doing at the beginning of his career, nor what was collected in his large hunter database, he admits that he has completely stopped hunting south winds as he gained experience. This cessation of hunting perceived "poor" conditions also correlated with an increase in experience and knowledge for the good doctor, further confounding this issue. (In other words, its possible that if he was to hunt south wind days with his current skill set, he may in fact see success that his younger self didn't.) I feel that hunting moon phases can lead to similar experiences for many hunters. If you save your "best moon days" to hunt your best spots, it makes sense that those days would appear to have the most movement and biggest bucks.

Obviously, there are clear environmental factors that affect deer movement. All you need is one trail camera set out for a season to realize that the amount of movement in a deer herd is variable. GPS collar studies of whitetails have confirmed this fact many times and revealed actual unbiased data about what environmental factors affect deer travel and feeding. However, it is our own inclination to jump to conclusions based on our limited experiences such as "deer don't move when its extremely windy", "they won't feed in the pouring rain" etc when really we typically have very little anecdotes from these conditions to prove these "gut" feelings and we may have a pile of experience in the conditions we personally consider "good."

If you have confidence in your approach and strategy, that alone will increase your success rate as you make decisive moves into dedicated kill spots. So if you feel like you need an east-north-east 6 mph wind on a 4 degree warming front with a rising barometer coinciding with a red over-the-shoulder falling harvest moon all happening on December 8th, and you kill deer consistently on that condition, more power to ya my friend.
The guy's statistical sampling was larger than any of us would ever be likely to achieve, and includes outfitter data that was not so selective about choosing hunting days. The second point in particular is important I think.
 

swampsnyper

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Warrior, Al
Not hunting any wind with south in it will make for a short season. Studying these backyard deer in Alabama with a predominate SE wind here, I watch them move everyday, no matter the wind or the temps. The hotter the weather, the more they move closer to dark. Cold front comes in and they will pop out at all times of the day and be frisky. 2 days after the front it can still be cold and have wind with south in it and they still move a lot. Pressure IMO has the most to do with deer movement.
 

BackSpasm

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Apr 10, 2019
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505
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Middle Tennessee
The guy's statistical sampling was larger than any of us would ever be likely to achieve, and includes outfitter data that was not so selective about choosing hunting days. The second point in particular is important I think.
Yes, I agree, the data set is a large REGIONAL sampling but the "data" presented was "I began to analyze the data in our mega hunting database....it became clear that a south wind was dismally unproductive."
 

rhagenw

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I’m in northern Missouri and I shot my doe when it was 90 degrees south wind in September, and missed a buck when it was 80 degrees with SE...always and never are poor words when describing anything related to hunting
 
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