A couple of years ago my home state of Virginia banned the use of estrus doe and other attractant scents that contain natural deer urine. This even though many experts believe the risk of spreading Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) in a herd with urine-based scents is virtually zero.
Last year, on top of that, Virginia restricted the use of minerals to attract deer, which has thrown a major monkey wrench in my scouting strategy.
But laws are laws, so this summer and fall I’m going to try something different. Rather than refreshing the licks (some a decade old) on the farms I hunt with minerals, I’ll be using Active-Cam™ Scouting Scent from Wildlife Research Center. It’s a non-urine-based curiosity scent designed to pique the interest of deer and other animals and bring them over for a sniff.
I’m going to experiment with Active-Cam two ways. First, in place of minerals, I’ll pour large rings of the scent around each old lick, and then hook a trail camera on a nearby tree to monitor it.
Second, I’ll hang a few cameras on natural edges and bottlenecks, and set wicks soaked with Active-Cam 5 to 10 feet away. This is how most of you will use this new scent to scout for bucks.
MSRP on a 4-ounce bottle of Active-Cam and a Magnum Key-Wick® is $12.99.
I’ll let you know how my experiments with this scent play out in a few months.
I have one concern, though. The black bear population in Virginia has risen steadily, and bears have been a problem for me the last few years, discovering my cameras at mineral licks and proceeding to knock them sideways or ripping them down altogether. This scent will supposedly attract not just deer but all sorts of wildlife. Its powerful sense of smell aside, there is no animal with more natural curiosity than a black bear. I anticipate getting a lot of bear images this summer.
I just hope they don’t eat all my cameras!