For many months and sometimes years, hunters will target a certain deer. Mature bucks are experts at dodging hunters up until Jan. 1. For most hunters who hunt the same stands through the entire season, that can be a really long time. While some mature bucks will slip up chasing an unbred doe or visiting a food source, many will become nocturnal.

Any deer that makes it to December has been spooked by  hunters on multiple occasions. Often, they have been spooked from several of their favorite places, forcing them to keep looking for areas free from human interference. These new hiding spots are generally deep in heavy cover, well away from the reach of the common hunter. 

However, a safe haven isn’t always 2 miles in the middle of a bed of brambles or a thick, overgrown cutover. Many deer find refuge in a small head of woods, near houses, or in any place that most hunters overlook. These are ideal targets for flushing that trophy buck during the day when they ‘re waiting for the after-dark hours to feed. Some of the best ones are adjacent to agriculture fields or in areas with a rich food source. Being able to sleep and eat close to these spots is a match made in heaven for a late-season survivor.  

For the best results, hunters should team up for man drives of deer to get them moving from their sanctuaries. Hunters should be designated as drivers, aka flushers, and shooters to maximize chances of taking a deer as safely as possible. While it might not be the most glamorous way to take a buck, hunters can find where these old bucks are holding up during the day and push them out for a late-season victory.