A Deer’s Nose Knows

South Texas weather has recently again shown its “diversity” by going from below 20 to near 80+ in the span of under a week. We went from worrying about frozen pipes to thinking about heat stroke. Go figure! I was doing a late morning to noon hunt for turkeys with no success. After a quick lunch my guest and I settled into our spots again and proceeded to begin the afternoon “deer blind sauna” experience one more time.
While I had carefully sprayed down with scent killer before leaving the truck, by the time the deer started moving out of the thick brush, it was near sundown and the NW wind had not done much good in cooling the interior temp. of the metal enclosure I had been sitting in. Several does and yearlings plus a fine 4.5-year-old 8 pointer were feeding along the food plot edge, with the buck pestering the girls. They seemed uninterested in his attention and preferred the corn spread out by the game feeder.
Another buck, younger by a year, but with an impressive 10-point typical rack sneaked out and began feeding in a pattern that was going to take him directly down wind from where I sat. This was opposite the direction of the rest of the deer before me.
At the exact moment his movement brought him to the very edge of where my scent was blowing, his head popped up like a jack in the box clown, and he started looking in my direction. Knowing the buck was off limits in my management practice of letting them grow to at least 5 years of age before even considering them as “shooters”, I was sitting very still and focused on his reaction.
He instinctively knew something “stinky” was somewhere around and while not in a panic, quickly reversed his course and in less than 30 seconds was lost again in the thick brush of La Brasada. I guess my scent removal approach had worn off courtesy of the warm temperature in the blind.
While that deer was in absolutely no danger of me that day, I was reminded how well The Good Lord has provided for their safety by giving them such a keen sense of smell. He did not know WHO I was, or exactly WHERE I was, but quickly had connected WHAT I was, and high tailed it to someplace far safer than being exposed out in the open.