If you have been paying attention to The Hunting Page’s Rut Meter, you might be asking, “How can the rut be 99% on?” Well, that’s simple: conditions in the deer woods are never 99% predictable. That said, when you get a 99% rut reading, it’s safe to assume it either has or is pretty close to happening on your back 40.
If you are not in a tree stand or ground blind this week (or next), you had better take up bowling, golf or some other past time. Chances are deer are breeding all over your property as you read this rut report. In the last week or so we have had reports of all kinds of nice bucks being killed; they have been chasing does all over the woods and savvy hunters have been out there and after them.
If your woods were quiet last week, they are exploding this week; if they were alive last week they could have gone quiet this week. Breeding deer typically don’t cover a lot of ground (they cover the ground before breeding). Instead of moving about, a buck and doe will find an inviting spot and spend a couple of days following nature’s call to reproduce. This rut-related behavior is often called “lockdown”.
We are telling you the rut is 99% on, but it is important to remember that nothing is 100% in the whitetail woods. 99% could mean deer running all over your woods or the only breeding pair of deer on your property “locked down” in 8 acres of brush; it just depends on what is happening on any given hour on any given day. That buck can decide to go look for a new doe at any time, (once the job is done, it’s done) as anything can happen in the deer woods and often does.
If you are serious about your deer hunting, you need to be in the woods: now, next week, and the week after that! The Rut Meter will not stay at 99% indefinitely, as more and more does return to being unreceptive and the bucks will slowly abandon the “urge to breed” in favor of the “urge to feed”.