If you are considering or may have already decided to lease your property for hunting, you probably have questions around what to expect. Hunters like to have a 1-year lease when leasing a property. The reasons are in the details. They need ample time to prepare, hunt and clear a property. They also have a chance to hunt all game seasons. A typical deer hunting lease can be broken into three phases, preseason, season, and postseason. We will look at these to give a better idea of what to expect with a lease.

First, we have the preseason, this is when hunters do all the preparation on a property. They will be scouting the tract to get a better understanding of game (deer) movement, water, and food locations. This will allow them to determine stand locations. Hunters can do this anytime from late winter all the way through summer and into early fall. It just depends on when the lease originates as to how quickly this must take place. A landowner can expect to see the hunters on the property several days scouting, setting, and checking cameras to develop a game plan. The next step in the preseason is to choose stand locations and setups. They will take a few days to hang stands or place ground blinds. During this time, they will also trim shooting lanes, cut trails and do trim work on access road. This will vary from property to property based on the amount of woods, existing trails, and landowners maintenance already done.

The second phase is the actual hunting season. This time varies region to region and state to state. Generally, deer season will last from September until January or February. To know the exact dates for seasons in your area you would need to check with the DNR in your state. Does this mean hunters will be on your property every day of season? No, there are peak times in all areas where the rut and deer movement are at a maximum. You can expect from hunters that they will focus their vacation on these times. So, you may see them hunting for a week to 10 days straight or it could be a day or 2 a week. Just know you are more likely to have hunters on your property numerous during this time of year.

The third and final phase is the post season. This is usually the time when you will see the least of your hunters. They have finished hunting and are planning for next season. If they are going to keep the lease again, they will run cameras, hunt for sheds, and scout the property. This would be 1-5 days in late winter or early spring. If they plan not to renew, they will come one or two days to remove all cameras and stands from the property.

BENEFITS TO LEASING YOUR PROPERTY
  • Avoid dealing with feuds between parties that want hunt your property for free
  • Reduce crop damage from hunter’s wildlife management
  • Eliminate trespassing and poaching
  • Allow peace of mind knowing who is hunting your property

Overall, the hunters will be on the property a few times in the beginning to prepare and setup. Then they could be there frequently during the season. Lastly, just a few times after the season has ended. In most situations you will not even know they are there unless they contact you beforehand or you happen to see their vehicle parked at an entrance. Even though a lease is for 1 year you can be sure hunters are not going to be on your property 365 days a year.