Habitat and Herd Improvement

How To Create Evening Whitetail Waterhole Setups

Evening whitetail waterhole setups represent the most common drinking time for thirsty whitetails, all season long. Have you created your waterholes in the right location?

Evening Waterhole Priority

If you have quality whitetail habitat, the whitetails on your land should be feeding on a diversity supply of browse within their daytime bedding areas. Briars, woody tips, acorns and various broadleaf weeds are much needed forages that deer can enjoy all day long, however, most daytime forages include very low levels of moisture. That fact creates an incredible opportunity for you!

I have experienced with extensive waterhole use, that deer will predictably use a waterhole during the evening hours, sometimes 10 to 1 over using that same waterhole during the morning hours. After deer feed on lush green forages all night, they just don't need to take a drink in the morning. In fact, they rarely if ever need to take an actual dring of water, if abundant high moisture content food sources are available.

evening whitetail waterhole

Whitetail Waterhole Rut Timing

By utilizing a quality waterhole strategy, you can find it pretty easy to determine when the rut begins. Why? Because while mature bucks will stop by your waterholes during the morning hours occasionally during the rest of the season, they will immediately begin consistent, morning and mid-day waterhole use when the rut begins!

Dry Bedding To Evening Food Source Movement

What do deer that have been bedding dry all day eating low-moisture forages seem to desire to do? You guessed it...hit a waterhole on the way to their evening food source! An evening waterhole can be a sure bet attraction to capture the attention of deer during their afternoon feeding movements. Some of the best advice I can give is to not only make sure that you have a waterhole well placed that allows you to collect deer during the afternoon hours, but that you have a bowstand placed nearby that allows you to enter and exit while never spooking any feeding deer.


Do you have any true, evening whitetail waterholes? If so, don't be suprised if you can take advantage of them all season long! At the same time, make sure to keep a close eye towards late October in the North 1/2 of the Country, because an increase in morning buck activity can signal that the rut is approaching fast.


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