Shed hunting is an art that demands strategic timing, and we want to talk about a fascinating concept – the 70% rule. 
Understanding the Landscape
First, it's crucial to recognize the landscape you're dealing with. Shed hunting dynamics differ on public land and private land. While public land offers vast expanses for deer to roam, private land demands a more calculated approach to avoid spooking the deer you hope to find sheds from.
Public Land Dynamics
If you're on public land, the impact of spooking deer is often minimal due to their constant movement across extensive territories. Spooking deer in one area doesn't necessarily mean you won't find sheds elsewhere. Hunters on public land often cover significant distances during shed hunting excursions.
Private Land Strategy
On private land, or small parcels, the approach needs to be more strategic. The 70% rule comes into play here, offering a guideline for minimizing impact. Pushing deer off your property too early can lead to missed shed opportunities.
Decoding the 70% Rule
The 70% rule simplifies shed hunting timing. The idea is to wait until approximately 70% of the bucks have shed their antlers before hitting the woods. This timing minimizes the risk of pushing deer around and maximizes your chances of finding antlers.
The Exponential Shedding Period
As shed hunting season progresses, the shedding process becomes exponential. Starting with older bucks that shed earlier due to various factors like health or injuries, the shedding percentage gradually increases. Observing this pattern helps you time your shed hunting expeditions for optimal success.
Cameras as Your Allies
For those who have REVEAL Cell Cams, observing the shedding patterns becomes more precise. Daily monitoring provides insights into the shedding status of the local deer herd, guiding your shed hunting strategy.
Landscape Variations
Keep in mind that shed timing can vary based on the landscape. Factors like food availability, habitat quality, and weather conditions play pivotal roles. Understanding these variables allows you to tailor your shed hunting approach to your specific location.
Strategic Shed Hunting Tips
  • Focus on areas with fence crossings and ditch crossings
  • Concentrate on food sources that are frequented by deer during daylight hours
  • Explore bedding areas, especially those near doe groups
  • Target thick transition zones between high-quality food and bedding areas
Mastering the art of shed hunting requires a blend of patience, strategy, and understanding the local landscape. The 70% rule acts as a compass, guiding shed hunters to optimal timing and increased success. Whether you're navigating public land expanses or carefully treading on private property, aligning with this rule ensures a more fruitful shed hunting season. So, as the shedding season approaches, let the 70% rule be your trusted companion in the quest for those coveted antlers. Happy shed hunting!
Article Credit: Information sourced from Jeff Sturgis of Whitetail Habitat Solutions