Posts Tagged ‘deer hunting’

Venison Meatball Recipe

February 26th, 2017 by BTC Editor

INGREDIENTS:

1 lb ground venison

¼ cup half and half

Extra Virgin Olive Oil

1 medium white onion – finely chopped

3 tablespoons chopped garlic

2 large eggs

1/4 cup dried parsley flakes

1 tsp dried oregano

1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese

salt and pepper to taste

 

DIRECTIONS

This recipe is by far the best wild game recipe I’ve ever tasted!  I must preface this by saying that up until a few of years ago, I was actually a vegetarian.   Not because I was trying to save the animals.  I did it because I just didn’t care for meat.  However, what I realized when I met my husband, who is a hunter and ultimately the one whom got me into hunting as well, is that what actually bothered me about meat is that I didn’t always know where the meat from the grocery store had come from.  I was growing a few veggies in my backyard, and purchasing the rest through a farmers market or local CSA.  So I have always been aware of where my food came from; but the meat remained a mystery.  Then along comes hunting.  The first time my husband brought a whitetail deer home for us to process I started asking questions.  I began cooking it for my family and realized my kids could never tell the difference between ground venison and ground beef.  Thus began my journey in creating wild game friendly recipes.

Now I am extremely picky with how my food tastes.  I do not like having a gamey taste to it at all.  This meatball recipe is so perfect.  Every time I make it, it gets better and better as I modify ingredients.

Begin by preheating your oven to 425 degrees and coating the bottom of your 9×12 baking dish with olive oil.  Next, place 1 pound of ground venison in a large mixing bowl.  Add ¼ cup half and half (regular milk works as well, however I have not tried this recipe with dairy substitutes) and then set this bowl aside.

 

In a medium skillet, heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil over medium heat.  Add 1 diced onion and 3 tablespoons of chopped garlic to the skillet.  Be sure to dice your onion into very small pieces.  Saute until the onion is clear.  I tend to like a lot of onion, so this may look like more than 1 medium onion. Never enough onion or garlic in my house!

 

 

Then, add the onion mixture to the ground venison bowl.  Add 2 eggs, ¼ cup dried parsley flakes, ¼ cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese, and 1 teaspoon oregano to this same mixture.  Salt and pepper to taste.  You are now ready to mix with a wood spoon or your hands. I typically use my hands, but am careful for the hot onion/garlic mixture.  Don’t burn your fingers!

 

 

Using the same medium skillet as you cooked the onions (as you can see in the photo I do not clean out the skillet), add 2 tablespoons olive oil and turn on heat to medium.  Roll meat mixture into 1” diameter meatballs.  Don’t look to close at mine.  They are never perfectly round because my kids are always starving.  Place meatballs into heated skillet; browning on at least 2 sides.  You are not cooking them all the way through, just browning the edges.  This makes the outside of the meatballs yummy and slightly crispy.  Once you have browned the meatballs on 2 sides, place meatballs into your greased baking dish.  Bake 20 minutes, turning once after 10 minutes.

 

 

My husband and I tend to eat them plain (that’s how good they are) or dipped in barbecue sauce.  My kids like to put them on Hawaiian rolls with cheese and barbecue sauce.  Either way, I think you will love them! Enjoy!

 

By Tammy Bashore

 

Tammy Bashore is an outdoor enthusiast from South Dakota. She is a professional photographer, the wife of a professional walleye angler and the mother of 2 kids, plus one fur baby, a GSP named Bentley (pictured above). Tammy is also a member of the Huntress View team, an organization formed to help strengthen the ever growing community of women hunters.

Late Season Trail Camera Placement

December 11th, 2016 by BTC Editor

As deer season is winding down and will soon be coming to an end, now is the perfect time to re-position your trail cameras and change your game plan for hunting late season whitetail bucks. As the seasons change, so does a whitetail’s pattern as they shift their focus from the rut to food once again. Here are a couple of tips on trail camera setup and placement to help you get the most out of your cameras before deer season closes.

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Camera Location: Pinch Points and Travel Corridors

While I move most of my cameras to new locations post-rut, I still like to leave one or two at prior locations like pinch points, known deer trails and travel corridors to catch any bucks that may still be out cruising for does. As the fawns come into estrous late in the season, often referred to as the “Second Rut”, these locations are great for catching buck movement in the daylight. It appears to me that is exactly what is going on in the next series of pictures.

1632:120416:45F:0000:ANDI :2E[097:0494]G[024:0x0016]

 

1700:120416:45F:0000:ANDI :2E[099:0453]G[024:0x0016] 1704:120416:45F:0000:ANDI :2E[097:0494]G[024:0x0016]

 

My Setup

When placing my cameras at the above locations, I like to set them up on burst mode to make sure I don’t miss any deer activity. For example, say I had my camera set up to take a picture every 5 seconds, but in normal mode. If this buck would have been trailing this fawn right on its tail, I may not have gotten a picture of him. In burst mode the camera takes several images, one after another, before stopping to reset.

 

Camera Location: Food Sources

Moving trail cameras to the remaining food sources is a good strategy for late season scouting. By now most of the acorns have either rotted or been eaten, so I like to move more of my cameras from the woods to our food plots in the fields. We have a couple of fields planted in winter wheat, clover and chicory, and another one planted in turnips. These have proven year after year to be the hot spots on our property for hunting late season bucks, and this year is no different! After checking my cameras this weekend, this buck has shown up in the daylight hours almost every day in one of our wheat and chicory plots.

 

1440:120616:52F:0000:HAAS :2E[142:0070]G[008:0x0006] 1615:120816:29F:0000:HAAS :2E[140:0076]G[008:0x0006]

 

My Setup

The Timelapse mode on my Browning Trail Cameras is perfect for watching bigger open areas, like our food plots. For the most part, we know where our deer are entering this field, which is why I put this camera where I did. But, deer will often be in that same location and you’d never know it because they are too far away to trigger the camera. Timelapse Mode solves that problem since it can capture game at 200+ yards away. Plus, you can easily view a full day’s worth of pictures in just minutes, thanks to the Buck Watch Timelapse Viewer Plus software that is included with every Browning Trail Camera.

If you still have a deer tag you’re trying to fill, utilize your trail cameras as best you can. They are a deer hunter’s most valuable scouting tool! I shot my biggest buck to date on the last day of Missouri’s 2014 archery season as he was making his way into our turnip plot. Had I not been watching and patterning him with my trail cameras, I may have picked a different stand in that food plot and missed my chance at him.

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Aside from avoiding tag soup, there are other benefits to keeping your trail cameras out during late season. Use them to help take inventory of what deer survived the season, determine your buck to doe ratio, and age of your deer. Looking over this season’s pictures, as well as pictures from prior season, will help you determine your game plan for next season. Another benefit to keeping your cameras set up so late in the year is to aid with shed hunting. Once you start getting pictures of bucks dropping their antlers, you’ll have a better idea of when and where to start looking for sheds.

1609:012016:23F:ANDI002 :3

 

Deer season isn’t over until it’s over, so if you’ve already taken down your game cameras for the year, I recommend getting them back out! The above late season trail camera locations and setups have helped me fill my deer tags in the past. Even if I don’t fill my archery tags this year, I have already gained some valuable information to carry over into next season, thanks to my Browning Trail Cameras!

 

By Andrea Haas

Andrea Haas is a Pro-Staffer from Missouri who enjoys hunting deer, turkeys, and upland birds. She is also the founder of the Huntress View, an organization formed to help strengthen the ever growing community of women hunters.

Early Season Bowhunting Tactics

October 2nd, 2016 by BTC Editor

By Greg Staggs

good-one

 

I turned and idled gently up the drive, palms getting clammy even as my breathing became shallower. Easing my truck to a stop, I quietly reached down and turned off the ignition and allowed the silence to envelope me. Going over my planned routine seemed to settle me a bit, and I took one last deep breath and opened the door. I had been thinking about this moment for weeks and it was finally here. Sliding off my seat, I walked as confidently as I could up to the door, knocked and asked if my date was ready.

First dates in high school probably provided as much nervous anticipation as anything I would experience for the first part of my life… until I started bowhunting. Today, I still idle gently into my parking spot. My palms may not be as clammy, but my senses are definitely heightened as adrenaline courses through my veins, thinking about the possibilities, the “what-ifs”… And my planned routine? It’s down to a science.

Chasing whitetails across the Midwest in September and October is truly a love of my life these days. Here are three things that have become a part of my routine that’s led to years of punched tags and filled freezers early in the season.

  • Scout with a light footprint. Amazingly enough, I don’t spend a lot of time in the woods in the summer. Most of my whitetail hunting is done on public land with miles of corn and soybeans backing up to the woods. I’ve spent many a night tucked into a fence row on the opposite side of a field glassing to identify which corners the deer are using to enter the fields.

 

  • Stay away as much as possible. If I can place a trail camera there on one visit and retrieve a card from it a month later, it’s harder for the deer to pattern me but I’m gaining valuable reconnaissance the whole time I wasn’t there. Taking it a step further, even my trail-camera placement leaves little presence. Ever walked into the woods and noticed a camera staring at you at eye-level? It can be obtrusive and stick out like a sore thumb. I’ve had deer think the same thing; I can tell by their reactions I’ve captured. A lot of times these days – especially on public land – I’ll take a lightweight climber with me and angle my camera down from twelve feet or so. It also keeps honest people honest, as my Dad used to say.
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  • Hunt with a light footprint. The first couple months of archery seasons in the Midwest can be downright hot. Deer don’t like to travel any farther than they have to, which means they’ll often bed less than 100 yards inside the woodline. If you plan to dive deeper in the woods this time of year, plan on bumping some deer. I’d rather sneak in and out of the edge a few times than blunder up once and alert every deer in the woods to your presence – especially a full month ahead of that magical November time-frame.

 

Greg Staggs is the former back-page columnist for Inside Archery, and his writing regularly appears in such magazines as Outdoor Life and Petersen’s Bowhunting. Staggs loves introducing his two boys to all things outdoors, including fishing, trapping, canoeing and camping, and has been chasing turkeys and big game exclusively with archery equipment for over 20 years.

 

5 Tips For Capturing Unique Trail Camera Photos

July 24th, 2016 by BTC Editor

Wood Duck drake and hen taken by #BrowningCameras Recon Force

 

Using trail cameras to scout for wildlife can be rewarding in more ways than one. The most obvious reason to use a trail camera is to pattern and age deer so you have a better idea of where to hunt and which deer you would like to harvest. Aside from hunting purposes, my favorite use of a trail camera is just to get good, unique pictures of a variety of different wildlife. Targeting a specific species and getting quality pictures at the same time can often be challenging, but I have a few tips I’d like to pass along that have helped me get some interesting shots

  1. Explore

Explore your property to find spots you think are unique, pretty or have a good view. Find a spot you like, hang a trail camera and see what shows up! Our property has an old rock wall that has turned out to be a neat spot for pictures. It’s not a spot that has a ton of wildlife activity, but when they do show up I love the shots that I get. Here is a shot from this spot:

 

2. Water

Animals are drawn to water. Ponds and creek crossing are a couple of my favorite spots to hang a camera because of the wide variety of animals that show up there. Creek crossings are where I tend to get the most pictures of predators like bobcats, foxes, and coyotes. Turkeys and deer often show up there as well, making for some great photos.

A pond is my favorite location in late winter and early spring to get pictures of waterfowl. A pond setup can be tricky, but placing a camera in front of logs or big rocks that stick up out of the water is what worked best for me, as the ducks seemed to hang out on those quite often.

 

3. Details

Pay attention to what will be in both the background and foreground of your photos. When trying to get beautiful pictures this is just as important as the wildlife species you’re targeting. For example, tall weeds or plants in front of the camera will block the view of the wildlife and can cause the camera to trigger when the wind blows, getting multiple pictures of just the weeds.

The weeds in the photo below get out of control really quickly in the summer and spring months and have to be mowed down often when putting trail cameras in this spot.

One of my favorite cameras, the Browning Spec Ops Full HD, has a 2” color view screen that can not only be used to view photos & videos in the field, it can also be used as a “live view” while positioning your camera. This helps ensure the images turn out how I envision them and keeps me from having to reposition the camera over and over again to get the shots I want.

 

4. Accessorize

A camera tree mount is worth its weight in gold when it comes to getting good quality photos. Having a perfect tree to hang a camera on is not always an option.  The Browning Trail Cameras Tree Mounts really help with positioning the camera and getting that perfect camera angle, especially when your only spot to hang a camera is in a crooked tree.

 

5. Experiment

Getting great trail camera photos will often require a lot of experimentation. Utilize the different options available on your cameras and play around with it until you figure out what works best for your setup and for the species you’re targeting.

For turkeys, I’ve found that I love the Rapid-Fire mode on my Browning Recon Force, which takes a burst of 8 images in 2 seconds. It helped capture some neat shots of them spreading their wings and flying.

 

Timelapse mode is great for watching larger areas, like fields and food plots. In such a big open area the wildlife may not always walk right by your camera and set off the trigger, but that doesn’t mean they aren’t there. Timelapse mode will take a picture at set intervals (every 10 seconds, for example), allowing you to watch the animals that may be too far away to trigger your camera. This can help you decide where you would like to place a camera next to get more up close shots of the wildlife. Images from timelapse mode can be viewed quickly and easily, as all Browning Trail Cameras include the Buck Watch Timelapse Viewer Plus software that allows you to view a full day of activity in minutes.

Trail cameras are a great scouting tool, but don’t overlook how fun they can be even when there is no hunting season open! Getting photos of bobcats, foxes, waterfowl and turkeys in the spring and summer can be just as rewarding as getting photos of a nice buck in the fall. Plus, it extends your time outdoors and gives you something to do while waiting for deer season to come around again. It can be difficult at times, but it’s worth it when you get that one in a million shot.

Do you have any tips or tricks for getting unique trail camera photos? Share them with us by leaving a comment!

Andrea Haas

Andrea Haas is a Pro-Staffer from Missouri who enjoys turkey hunting, deer hunting and bowhunting. She is also the founder of the Huntress View, an organization formed to help strengthen the ever growing community of women hunters.