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Location: Emily MN
Joined: 05/18/2006
Posts: 6
Night bears

I did some searching but wasn' t able to find any info on attracting night bears durring the day so i appologize ahead of time if i missed it. This is my first year bear hunting and i am located in north central MN. I am an archer. I started baiting 2 weeks before opener and have been using a mix of my own. It consists of 2 parts corn, 1 part molasses, 1 part dog food, and 1 part sunflower seeds. I put that in a five gallon bucket and tide the bucket to a tree in 4 different places that looked promising. Then i took fryer grease and pured all over teh bucket and in the food and on trees, teh bears eat teh trees btw. I also use anise oil and more liquid molasses as attractent. I also put about 150lbs worht of weight on the bucket so i would know its a bear. And on several occasions we have found scat in different directions of teh bait and claw marks 40ft in up trees and stuff. So we thin multiple bears are hitting every station.

Within days every station was being hit on a daily basis. I was able to refill every station almost everday, every other day on a few occassions. I was so pumped to hunt opener. I took 5 days off work with a friend of mine and we hit it hard opening morning. We hunted for 2 days in one stand and saw nothing durring teh day but every night my station was being emptied. So we moved to another station. That night a nice 180-220 bear came in and gave me a perfect broadside shot. To my horror at release i heard the dreadid sound of bone. I put my arrow right in his shoulder blade, we have teh entire encounter on film. I searched for my bear for nearly 10 hours but lost his trail deep in a swamp and gave up. Even with all my searching and scent and noise taht same night that station was hit and emptied. However in 5 days of hunting that was the only bear we saw durring shooting hours, i have no cameras by the way. CAn't afford them. My baiting locations are in the perfect places, near large dark swamps and the stations are surrounded by the thicket nastiest stuff imaginable.
My questions are:

Am i feeding these bears enough?

How can i attratct bears durring teh day if they are already nocturnal?

I am in hundreds of acres of private land and its been in the high 70's low 80's durring the day. Should i just wait until later in season when it cools down?

And should i move my station even though it was hit taht same night? maybe taht was teh only day bear in taht area? Or will bears travel a long way.

thanks for any info and i'll post some pics from teh video soon as i can of my failed attempt at killing a bear. We recovered both my arrow and my broadhead so i am almost 100% sure the bear will survive as long as he doesn't get infected. /pray

thanks again.

Jon

MnKaMRaM's picture
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Location: Minnesota
Joined: 08/22/2006
Posts: 56
Night bears

Hey Discepticon......there is a posting that Hotmoon did in one of the more recent forums with ideas on how to get nocturnal bears in during shooting hours....it had to do with using a radio and flashlights and having them shine on the bait crib all night and have the radio blaring on an annoying station all night and then go out first thing in the morning and take the flashlights and radio out....trying to train the bears that people are at the site all night but they can come and feed during the day without fear of humans......That is the only posting that I remember reading about getting nocturnal bears th change their behavior.

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Location: ontario
Joined: 07/07/2006
Posts: 237
Night bears

In my opinion, I think you are baiting far too much. With multiple bears hitting the baits,the sites should be competetive but with so much food available why should they come during daylight hours. And with your daily visits to the site to bait, it may be that you are the ones who've spooked them to hit later. Don't move the baits. The animals know they're there. I'd cut way back on the amount you are feeding them til its almost all gone. Then bait only 3 or 4 lbs each time you go in.
How did you discover claw marks 40 ft high in a tree? Likely cubs, so that means theres at least a sow around.

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Location: Emily MN
Joined: 05/18/2006
Posts: 6
Night bears

Hey thanks for the replys guys and i searched adn did find Hotmoon's post on night bears and it was very helpful. I will be puting those ideas into play next time i'm out.
Sawbill i think you might be right. At first I though a 5gallon bucket of food per day was way too little food but now that i think of it there have been a few occasions where our station was hit and only half the food was gone. I guess maybe i am just over feeding them. My best guest is that i'm taking 15-25 lbs of food per day per bait station. As for the marks in the birch tree the claw mark is 5.5" wide and i found it while me and my buddy were in our stands. I was video taping for him and i was just panning the area filming our surroundings when i noticed marks in a tree 15' behind our tree. I zoomed in to see it and it was clearly a bear and he went all the way up the tree until it was only about 5" wide, around 40' up. And you could see where the bear was having trouble getting his body up the tree because he would slide a foot or so down the tree before he would start going up again. It was pretty creepy to be honest. maybe a bigger bear chased an ok sized bear up the tree? the claw marks were way too big to be a cub i think but i'm far from an expert. thanks again.

Jon

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Location: Calgary Alberta
Joined: 08/27/2006
Posts: 31
Night bears
sawbill wrote:
In my opinion, I think you are baiting far too much. With multiple bears hitting the baits,the sites should be competetive but with so much food available why should they come during daylight hours. And with your daily visits to the site to bait, it may be that you are the ones who've spooked them to hit later. Don't move the baits. The animals know they're there. I'd cut way back on the amount you are feeding them til its almost all gone. Then bait only 3 or 4 lbs each time you go in.
How did you discover claw marks 40 ft high in a tree? Likely cubs, so that means theres at least a sow around.

I (respectfully) disagree. Its been my experience that you can never have too much bait. 15-25 lbs a day is nothin if you have a couple of bears hitting it. This spring I ran 100-200 lbs every 2nd or 3rd day into my #1 bait, and it was getting sucked back faster than I could bring it in. If its at all possible (if you have a quad and tub trailer) I'd pull the baits out at night. Just like training a dog, teach 'em they can only eat during daylight hours lol.

Also, how are you entering your bait to hunt? I've found that bears tend to stick pretty close to a bait site, and know when you're there. Try having someone go in with you, stock the bait while you're getting into your stand, then leave you there. This spring I took a buddy to one of my baits that was getting smoked day after day, we snuck in real quiet, and sat for 4 hours. In those 4 hours, I heard and saw a bear circling and circling and circling 100-150 yards out, but wouldn't come in. I told my buddy he knows we're here, so I climbed down, and walked out, left him in the stand by himself. 5 minutes after I left, he came straight in and my buddy stuck him with an arrow.

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Location: Emily MN
Joined: 05/18/2006
Posts: 6
Night bears

Hey whitetail. To bait my stations i made one trail, shortest possible route from my 4-wheeler, to the bait. I didn' t use kind of cover scents the first 2 weeks of baiting but once i started hunting it was full camo, face paint, scent killer, and even scent cover. I also am stone quiet when approaching my stand and i am in my stand by noon every time i hunt, just in case one comes in early. So not sure if bears just know i'm there or what. I can try the two man thing but i hunt waayy out in the middle of know where so finding another person willing to drive 12 miles with a truck and 3 more with a wheeler just to walk in and out wont be easy. I'm banking on the radio and flashlight thing working. When baiting i also made a ton of noise when i walked, i'm a pretty small guy so i can be pretty sneaky. So there is a huge difference between what it sounds like when i bait and when i hunt. One thing i forgot to mention the last day we hunted we had a nice 350+ circle us about 40 yards out. He circled unti he got down wind of us and then he was gone. He was a big bruin though and i got to see him mutiple times but sadly we were unable to get him on film, brush it too thick. At t he moment i think i'm goign to pull all my resources and bait into one location, no sense in feeding 10 bears when i only can kill one. I'm still not sure if i should put out more bait ot or less, any more opinions? thanks

Jon

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Location: ontario
Joined: 07/07/2006
Posts: 237
Night bears

Whitetailer, I have absolutely no grief whatsoever with you disagreeing with my take on it. Actually, it's great because this lets the guys see two sides of an issue and perhaps they can come up a theory they will believe in. So, why do I go with less bait? Over the years I've gotten a lot of footage of bears feeding at baitsites in August/Sept. This is when they're expected to be on a feeding binge. But, I don't see that on the video. The bears come in, take a bit, mosey off with a chew then come back in later. Some lay right there and munch away, often with other bears hanging around. But they never wolf the meal down as you'd expect. Once that bait is gone, usually about 5 lbs worth, the bears leave but never go far. I re-bait the next morning or afternoon and the same show starts all over again. But, I've gotta confess, I've never really had a problem with bears coming only at night. I've also use trail timers (when I can keep the dang bears off'em) and they kinda suggest the same thing. Come in, feed til the baits all gone then be there next day waiting on some more. I think if there's a lot of food available they can come whenever they like, morning, noon or night. But with little food, its first come, first served. I guess my system seems to work OK for me, but if whatever you're doing is working, you'd be crazy to change.

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Location: Emily MN
Joined: 05/18/2006
Posts: 6
Night bears

I am going to agree with sawbill, although i see whitetail's point, mostly because i do not have the money or resources to put 100lbs of food out every other day or so. Also the bear i was able to shoot at we filmed for almost 4 minutes before i shot. Durring that time he only ate 1 donut. He seemed in no hurry to wolf anything down. Also on that exact bait station there have been several times when i have gone out and all my bait wasn't completely gone and when it was i suspect it may have taken multiple bears to empty it, i know my stations are being hit by several bear for many reason. Varying sizes of paw prints in mud on the trail they enter from. 2 my bucket some times is just knocked over, some times its chewed to pieaces and some times it completely gone and i have to go looking for it. while tracking the bear i wounded i actually found one of my buckets almost a mile from my station, dumb bears. Also i have found varrying sizes and color of fresh scat at the same site. Since i don't have cameras i have no idea the exact size of most of t hese bears. But i put a radio and a flashlight out the two most promising bait stations tonight and i'll shut them off early tomorrow so i'm hoping for positive results. I should be able to post a pic or two of the bear i shot, and wounded, by this weekend. But in the end when dealing with mother nature there is no exact science or way of doing things so to each his own.

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Joined: 08/30/2006
Posts: 12
Night bears

Try putting less bait out each time and make them compete for the bait. Take bear scat from another bait site or location and put it in front of your barrel, then leave no bait. The dominant bear in the area will smell the other bear and see that the bait is gone and start to gradually come in earlier.

Bait early in the mornings only, never late at night. Encourage competition with less amounts of bait.

These are tatics that seem to work for some folks.

Good luck.

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Joined: 07/11/2006
Posts: 139
Night bears

"NWbearhunter Try putting less bait out each time and make them compete for the bait. Take bear scat from another bait site or location and put it in front of your barrel, then leave no bait. The dominant bear in the area will smell the other bear and see that the bait is gone and start to gradually come in earlier.

Bait early in the mornings only, never late at night. Encourage competition with less amounts of bait.

These are tatics that seem to work for some folks.

Good luck"

HoTm00n, is that you?

If it is, welcome back

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