In this day and age of Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) South Carolina becomes the 9th state to prohibit the use of natural deer urine, and to require hunters to use synthetic deer lures only. The new regulation takes effect with the start of the 2019-20 whitetail season.
Earlier this summer Tennessee also issued a new regulation that requires the use of synthetic scents. Arizona, Arkansas, Idaho, New Mexico, Rhode Island, Vermont and my home state of Virginia are the other states that have banned natural deer and elk urine.
In a press release, the South Carolina Dept. of Natural Resources wrote: “the department is following the lead of other states in proactively prohibiting the use of (natural attractants) in order to minimize the potential for CWD introduction into South Carolina.”
In South Carolina and the aforementioned states, it is not only illegal to use natural deer urine, but also to possess it while out in the woods hunting. Remember to remove any natural deer urine/scents leftover in your day pack from last season and replace it with new bottles of synthetic scents.
If you hunt in one of these states and like to use scent products, don’t fret.
I started using man-made scents extensively several years ago, when natural deer urine was banned here in Virginia. I enjoy using synthetics and have noticed no drop off in effectiveness. A good synthetic scent smells like a deer—if a buck is rutting and primed to respond, he will come to a man-made smell just like he might natural urine.
I use the synthetic scents from Wildlife Research Center exclusively, and here’s how.
In the late October pre-rut, when bucks get aggressive and prowl but before does are ready to breed, I set wicks doused with Hot Musk to float the scent of an intruder buck in an area. If a rowdy buck working the area gets a whiff, he might come in to challenge.
Later around Halloween, when I make a lot of mock scrapes, I douse them with Hot Scrape synthetic.
In early to mid-November I switch to Estrus Gold and Ultimate Buck Lure for my drag lines and wicks around my stand. If a buck cuts a line or smells a wick, and again if he is in love mode and primed to respond, he will come to a synthetic smell as if it were the real thing.
Keep drag lines with hot doe going into the post rut, when bucks are still ready to breed but when far fewer does are responsive. A buck might cut your scent trail yet and follow it close to your stand.