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Chris Kirby on Hunting New York State Deer

provided by John Phillips

Chris Kirby, the president of Quaker Boy Calls, and his wife, Michelle, are now the owners of Quaker Boy Calls in Springville, New York. Here at Mossy Oak, we’ve seen Chris grow up working with his dad, Dick Kirby, the creator of Quaker Boy Calls. Following in Dick’s footsteps, Chris became a major national and world’s champion turkey-calling champion and also is involved in the Quaker Boy videos and television shows. He’s been calling game and taking game since he could walk. As Chris Kirby says, ‘I’ve been a Mossy Oak Pro as long as I can remember. Under our ownership, Quaker Boy will continue to produce its award-winning, quality calls in the USA.” Chris hunts all over the nation for not only deer and turkey with his bow and guns, but about every other type of game that can be called or decoyed into the hunter. 

deer in snow

The land mass in New York State is 70-80 percent rural. We don’t hunt deer in New York any differently than you’ll hunt them anywhere else in the United States. The fundamentals of deer hunting are still the fundamentals of deer hunting - regardless of where you hunt them. In western New York State, where I hunt, we are very much a dairy community and have corn and soybean fields, deep mountains, valleys, hardwood ridges and bottom lands. In the winter months, we get really cold weather, like Minnesota and Wisconsin do. Western New York is right across the Niagara River from Canada, and one of the big differences in New York State as compared to the states west of us is we do get winter snowstorms because we’re on the eastern side of Lake Erie. For instance, we may get 2-3 feet of snow a day. And then the sun will come out, and that snow will be gone in three or four days. 

While hunting in western New York State, I pay a lot of attention to barometric pressure. When barometric pressure is rising, deer hunting is better than when the barometric pressure is falling. 

Our deer season opens in October, and at that time of the year, I hunt food sources. Early season is when our deer start fattening-up for the hard winter that’s on the way. We plant food plots here in New York State, but people who don’t have food plots, hunt the agriculture. December is our late deer season. We’ll generally have about 2 or 3 inches of snow on the ground, and the deer rut is over. After the rut, our deer start to move back to the best foods available.

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