Nicknamed Split G2, I harvested him on Dec. 6, at 4:15 p.m. on the edge of a small secluded plot of Winter Greens. This plot for many years has been called the “Potato Patch” by our family. I’d never seen this great buck — not in velvet, not during bow season, not until I pulled the trigger.
But I was well aware that he roamed our property thanks to a number of scouting cameras armed in key locations. The day before Split G2 showed up at the potato patch, I had watched a group of bucks enter the plot one-by-one until the 8th and final buck arrived. Shortly after, several does walked in and fed amongst them. Around 3:45 — the next afternoon the wind was in my favor — I climbed into the rifle stand concealed in a mature pine tree near the secluded Potato Patch. Shortly after 4 p.m., I noticed an unfamiliar buck entering the plot. That was a good sign, for he might be traveling with a different group than those I’d seen the previous afternoon. Several minutes later another buck — nicknamed 125 for his estimated score — showed up. I’d seen him a few times during the season, and once again, he was not part of yesterday’s group... more good sign. After a few minutes of watching the bucks through my binoculars, I lowered them for a rest, and there stood the Split G2 buck on the far right-hand side of the plot with his nose to the ground. Seconds later a gunshot thundered across the wooded area... mine!

When I knelt down beside the beautiful buck, I was all smiles... all from the power of plots! Split G2 gross-scored 162-2/8 with a 144-2/8 net, making him the largest buck I’ve ever taken in 43 years of deer hunting. Building up the wildlife habitat diversity on our property for the past several years has been a very rewarding activity, and food plots have been a major addition. Even though our Pennsylvania farm consists of hundreds of acres of agricultural crops that wildlife — especially deer — utilize, those crops are seldom available year round. That’s where the food plots come in. Planted properly, food plots not only provide year round nutritional benefits but also fantastic hunting opportunities. The Whitetail Institute products are part of our food plot management, and the Split G2 buck is proof that they work.