With the arrival of fall, comes the arrival of the Rut Tracker. Testosterone begins rising in bucks right around mid September amping up weekly as we press on closer to the rut in November. Their antlers harden, they start tearing up bushes, and they start laying fresh scrapes every chance they get. These are the obvious indicators of the rise in Testosterone in bucks. Less obvious signs but indicators none the less, are bachelor groups breaking up, bucks relocating, brief sparring matches, and dominant bucks asserting their dominance over younger bucks.  Hunters would be wise to note these changes but not confuse them with authentic rut or breeding related behavior.

Mature Bucks will be bedded very close to food this time of year and occasionally check out the local doe herd while feeding at night.

Hunters that intend on hunting the pre-rut are best to hunt food sources or areas that are used by deer going from bedding areas to food sources. Early season bucks are generally feeding aggressively as their body prepares for the Rigors of the Rut and winter to follow.

Don’t be dupped by aggressive soft signs of the upcoming rut; they are made by bucks under the influence, the influence of the first releases of testosterone and a prelude to the upcoming Breeding Rights.

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Jason Ashe
Jason Ashe is an avid whitetail deer enthusiast and avid hunter from the finger lakes region of New York. A full time social media specialist in the outdoor industry and habitat specialist with Mid-Lakes Whitetails, Jason has been featured in such publications as Quality Whitetails numorouse times and been paired with hunting greats in Outdoor Life for his knowledge and passion for hunting mature deer. Turkeys, Coyotes also top the list of game that Jason pursues in any down time he has from whitetails. He consideres himself lucky to have whitetails and hunting be a part of everyday life. His wife Laura also shares in his passions along with their 2 children.