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Things start to move.....

Discussion in 'Hunting' started by Plank Road Farm, Dec 11, 2011.

  1. Plank Road Farm

    Plank Road Farm Well-Known Member

    This is my third year deer hunting and I've noticed something.
    I usually get to my stand 30 minutes before legal time to shoot, which is 30 minutes before daybreak.
    During that time and actual daybreak I start to seeing things start to move in this twilignt zone.
    Dark things (like trees, bushes, stumps, rocks, etc) seem to move and I'm constantly trying to see if it is a deer sneaking through the woods.
    Has anyone had this experience?
    I was talking about this with a friend of mine & he said it happens to him.
    He said a guy he knows went hunting for the first time.
    He said he swore he saw a deer (it acturlly was a stump with broom straw growing beside it) every time a breez came through the straw would move.
    He came back to camp and told on himself.
    Said he shot that stumpt 5 times, and hit it every time!
    What say you?
  2. Freedom_fighter_in_IL

    Freedom_fighter_in_IL Well-Known Member

    Well for one, I would say that the fella stump shooting needs to be removed from the woods POST HASTE and taken to some serious Hunters safety courses! One of the most important rules in hunting is "IDENTIFY YOUR TARGET AND WHAT IS BEYOND IT"

    Hearing tends to transmit to sight in your mind when it is dark. You hear something and your mind attempts to make visual confirmation of what you are hearing. We all go through it and it is one of the MAIN reasons for the rule I stated.
  3. KodiakBeer

    KodiakBeer member

    Google: Pareidolia.

    ROCKFISH Well-Known Member

    Some of what you see is imagined. Some of it is deer movement, and the rest is other hunters. Don't shoot unless you are perfectly sure.
  5. Cob

    Cob Well-Known Member


    Here's definition from Wikipedia:

    Pareidolia ( /pærɨˈdoʊliə/ parr-i-doh-lee-ə) is a psychological phenomenon involving a vague and random stimulus (often an image or sound) being perceived as significant. Common examples include seeing images of animals or faces in clouds, the man in the moon or the Moon rabbit, and hearing hidden messages on records played in reverse. The word comes from the Greek para- – "beside", "with", or "alongside"—meaning, in this context, something faulty or wrong (as in paraphasia, disordered speech) and eidōlon – "image"; the diminutive of eidos – "image", "form", "shape". Pareidolia is a type of apophenia.
  6. KodiakBeer

    KodiakBeer member

    In simple terms it means the brain wants to make recognizable shapes out of random patterns. If you want to see a deer, that random collection of shade and leaves in the darkness might just become a deer.
  7. gspn

    gspn Well-Known Member

    One of the oldest jokes in the woods is that EVERYTHING looks like a deer around dawn and dusk.

    Its important to recognize that so you dont start shooting at the wrong things.

    We've even joked about making the new guys a range-card that shows distances and directions of stuff not to shoot as dark approaches...lots of stuff out there will fool you.

    I agree with Freedom Fighter...anybody who did that at my place would never hunt there again. Stupidity kills...you cant ever call a shot back.
  8. der Teufel

    der Teufel Well-Known Member

    When I was in Army basic training, we had a course in night observation.

    It seems that when you look directly at something in the dark (staring at it), it seems to 'jump around' a little. The Army's solution was to instruct us to look just a little to the left or right of what we wanted to observe. I've found this to be useful information.

    I believe it has to do with the fact that we have a tiny blind spot near the center of each eye. When we stare at something we might only see it with one eye, then we move just slightly and the other eye picks it up, or maybe the first eye loses it for an instant. As a result the brain thinks it's moving around.

  9. jbkebert

    jbkebert Well-Known Member

    ^^^ That is interesting.

    I sometimes have a free day and will sit from and hour before sun up to past sundown. Trying to sit that long while remaining focused can make you see all sorts of stuff. Whenever I start day dreaming its best to take a little nap. A saftey vest is a must at least for me. If you sit there and think about deer and stare into the woods long enough. Branches might start to look like antlers. A brown leaf fluttering in the breeze becomes a ear moving and so on. This can become very dangerous if you don't snap out of it and make darn sure before you shoot.

    This time of year I am running a trap line. I have to get the kids on the bus and be to work by 8 am. Which means roaming the woods at early hours in the dark. The woods look very different in the dark than in the light of day. Distances do not appear to be the same and shapes and shadows kinda screw with your mind. Sounds are amplified. You get used to it but for new hunters I can see why things can happen.

    That is why it is so important like posted above to identify your target and what lies beyond before you shoulder the rifle. Bino's are one of the most important peices of hunting gear you can buy.
  10. paintballdude902

    paintballdude902 Well-Known Member

    we did a night nav class when i did usaf survival school. its strange how much changes after the sun goes down.
  11. Arkansas Paul

    Arkansas Paul Well-Known Member

    I don't think I'd like to go hunting with him. That's what I think.
  12. 1911 guy

    1911 guy Well-Known Member

    Der Teufel, What you remember from basic is pretty close to correct. We have rods and cones in our eyes, one is far better at low light vision than the other. I can never remember which. The ones that are better are "daytime" vision are in the center, so we do have an effective "blind spot", although not an actual one in the middle of our eye at low light.

    Two tricks to combat this are to look slightly off to the side of something and the second is to look down momentarily and close your eyes. Roll your eyes one way a few times, then the other. Night vision will temporarily improve.
  13. jmstevens2

    jmstevens2 Well-Known Member

    Actually you are right, but. There is a small blind spot where the optic nerve enters the back of the eye. No rods or cones in that spot. Strangely, the mind fills in this spot with "expected" information because the mind does not like a vacuum.
  14. RogueLeader

    RogueLeader Active Member

    Rods detect black and white, cones detect color. In a room with very little light, we see black and white. If a little bit of light enters the room, the cones are able to pick up the light and we see color wherever the light hits. Since there is very little predawn and post-dusk light, our eyes are using the rods. As was discussed above, looking at the edge of the object will help determine what that object is. The reason some objects seem to move is because we stare at it for an extended time in an effort to identify it. For instance, if you happen to be looking at a particular star at night and you stare at it for a couple of seconds, it starts to move. However, if you look away from it, you find it will still be in the same spot.
  15. Art Eatman

    Art Eatman Administrator Staff Member

    I've come real close to killing a prickly-pear deer a time or six. :D
  16. USAF_Vet

    USAF_Vet Well-Known Member

    I went through that same course.

    And yes, at dusk/dawn, everything seems to be on the move. you get used to it after awhile, though, but it's still kinda creepy.

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