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Hearing that Iowa's Kandi Kisky killed a giant whitetail isn't all that shocking. She and hubby Don Kisky are well-established as big-buck gurus and live the title of their popular TV series, Whitetail Freaks.
But here's the somewhat shocking part: She killed her latest Iowa whitetail in mid-October.
That's probably the earliest I've ever killed a deer - and we saw a 180-class deer earlier, she said. The acorn crop has been amazing this year. The red oaks have really produced a lot of acorns, and the deer haven't had to go very far to find them.
On Oct. 19, Kandi climbed into a stand where her son, Caleb, had passed a solid 10-pointer the year before. The Kiskys had trail camera photos of the same buck and were a bit disappointed to find he hadn't grown much from the year before. Now, keep in mind that the Kisky family aren't your typical deer hunters. The buck, which sports bladed G2s, was a 150-class buck that Kandi half-jokingly called a cull buck.
Obviously, when you look at him you realize that he's not really a 'cull' deer. But we knew he was mature and had probably peaked in terms of antler growth, so he was on our hit list because we had a lot of pictures of him and history, she said. The cool thing was we went in there to kill that particular buck and that's exactly what happened. Trust me, that doesn't happen very often.
The morning Kandi tagged the buck, nine mature does had walked into easy bow range and were feasting on the acorns that littered the ground beneath their stands.
It was pretty amazing that we didn't spook any of them. With all of the acorns this year, we decided that we were just going to really take scent control to the extreme, use our Scent-Lok and spray down with Wildlife Research Center spray, she said. It really paid off because we did not spook those deer. I had actually just moved my E-Z Hanger to the other side of the tree because I knew it would be in the way. And I saw this buck coming. I was trying to get Don's attention and I think the buck must have noticed that and veered around us a little bit.
While the buck did change its course, it didn't veer far enough. When it stopped broadside, Kandi touched the release and made a great shot.
Kandi said the buck has not been scored but notes it's definitely in the 150s - not bad for an October lull period buck!
We're really looking forward to the rest of the season. We have some giants around this year, Kandi said. Hunting in October wasn't easy, but when we found one big one, it just seemed like we found them all. Everyone thinks there are all sorts of secrets and gimmicks to this stuff, she continued. But we just made sure we were doing everything we could to be careful. We wore our Scent-Lok facemasks, we sprayed down and we hunted the right winds.
Sage advice from one of deer hunting's most successful women.
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