Reports of rutting bucks are still coming in on a regular basis but “rut over” reports are beginning to show up more often than we can say. Last weekend we hunted our property and saw a little bit of everything, plenty of fawns and does feeding together with the occasional buck checking does thrown in for good measure. Every deer in the woods is not going crazy with rut fever but there is still plenty of rut activity happening across whitetail country. Does are being bred, and bucks are still acting “rutty”. Our younger aged bucks definitely seemed to have lost interest in the does but the older aged (3+ yr. old) bucks were definitely interested in giving the girls a second look. If they got just a faint whiff of “ode de la estrus” they would have been on it in a second, as it turned out there was no estrus in the air this past week we are going to set the meter at 50%. Right now the best place to spend your hunting time is on food sources, especially foods that we often call “hot”. High carbohydrate foods that produce body heat (fat) are where the action is at right now. If you have any standing corn, that is a great bet right now as are oak flats that produced a bumper crop of acorns and sugar rich green fields (forage oats, turnips, and cold tolerant clover.
A great all-day stand for gun hunting is a point-to-point crossing. Hang a lock-on or ladder just inside a strip of trees dont be afraid to sit on the ground for a surprise approach either. Bucks trolling for or chasing does will move all day in this type of cover. Sit in your best rut stand all day, you might shoot your buck anytime…. Even if you don’t see a shooter one day, come back tomorrow and the next day as long as the wind allows it, a big buck on a doe estrous chase might not be on your land every day, but he’ll swing through eventually—be there when he shows