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Small Food Plot On Travel Route Pays Off With Madison County Buck

Good scouting and proper food plot placement put 160 inches of antler down for Braxton Legg.

Mike Bolton | September 15, 2022

Braxton Legg with a Madison County buck that he killed opening-day afternoon.

Braxton Legg heard stories of a large buck making the rounds of several farms in the part of Madison County where his family’s farm is located. Braxton’s problem was that he needed for the big buck to visit his small 75-acre farm, and he needed to be ready with his bow when it did.

“I put up a camera at our place in July, and two days later I started getting pictures of him,” Braxton said. “I was getting pictures of him about every other day. A neighbor was getting pictures of him on the same day about three-quarters of a mile away, so I knew he was traveling a lot.”

Braxton, a 23-year-old who works the family’s six chicken houses and cows, realized that the buck was crossing the family farm to get to a neighbor’s soybean field.

“Two weeks before the season, I planted a quarter-acre food plot with clover and winter peas in the area he was passing through,” he said. “I was really surprised how well it came up. I hung a lock-on stand overlooking the food plot.”

Braxton continued to get daytime photos of the deer until two days before the season, then he got the first nighttime photo of the buck. He figured the buck was going nocturnal.

“On opening-day morning I sat in the stand until about 10 a.m. and I figured he had gone nocturnal,” he said. “I got back in the same stand about 4 o’clock and sat there until about 6:30 when eight small bucks came to the food plot. Finally, about 7:10, I looked to my left and saw the 8-point buck that the big buck had been traveling with in the pictures. I figured the big buck was most likely with him. I stood up in my stand and got my bow. The big buck came out behind him.”

The two bucks started making their way across the food plot and made a straight line for a corn pile that was 20 yards from Braxton’s stand.

“The 8-point stepped in the shooting lane first, but the big buck was right behind him. When the big buck put his head in the pile, I drew.

“My shot was a little high and a little forward, but I heard it hit and the arrow buried up to the fletching. He ran, but I thought I heard him crash. He only ran 65 to 70 yards.”

Braxton was immediately impressed by the buck’s 14 points and the mass of the antlers.

“It turns out he was only 3 1/2 years old, and that’s a lot of mass for a deer that age,” he said. “I had it roughed scored, and it grossed between 155 and 160. I figure it will net a little over 140. It is my biggest buck ever.”

 

Madison County Best Bow Bucks Of All-Time

Rank Score Name Year County Method Photo
1 151 4/8 Wade Patterson 1990 Madison Bow View 
2 135 1/8 Josh Hix 2020 Madison Bow View 
3 134 4/8 Nathan Gammons 2005 Madison Bow
4 132 6/8 Johnny Dyer 1995 Madison Bow
5 132 2/8 Ernest McGaughey 2011 Madison Bow
6 128 4/8 David M. Hanley 2016 Madison Bow
7 126 Robert Armour 2004 Madison Bow
8 125 4/8 Ronald Allen 2010 Madison Bow
9 118 5/8 Josh Hix 2015 Madison Bow View 
10 116 5/8 Tim Shubert 2015 Madison Bow View 

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