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Timing the rut


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Messages posted to thread:
scs 22-Sep-10
HerdManager 22-Sep-10
scs 22-Sep-10
spider1 22-Sep-10
HerdManager 22-Sep-10
spider1 22-Sep-10
Jeff Durnell 22-Sep-10
daleheth 22-Sep-10
scs 22-Sep-10
George D. Stout 22-Sep-10
Brad Gehman 22-Sep-10
Brad Gehman 22-Sep-10
NockTaker 22-Sep-10
Treerat 22-Sep-10
Ben Farmer 22-Sep-10
Bourbonator 22-Sep-10
Treerat 22-Sep-10
williethebarber 22-Sep-10
Brad Gehman 23-Sep-10
RC 23-Sep-10
Brad Gehman 23-Sep-10
Flintknocker 23-Sep-10
MF 23-Sep-10
MF 23-Sep-10
Jeff Durnell 23-Sep-10
Jeff Durnell 23-Sep-10
Jeff Durnell 23-Sep-10
Bone Collector 23-Sep-10
lazer2 23-Sep-10
vcruz079 23-Sep-10
RC 23-Sep-10
muzzy100 23-Sep-10
Tombow 28-Sep-10
Bourbonator 28-Sep-10
Bob Hildenbrand 28-Sep-10
Nattybumppo 29-Sep-10
WFG in NM 29-Sep-10










From: scs ........ No Violations Reported on this individual No Violations Reported on this individual No Violations Reported on this individual ....... Date: 22-Sep-10


According to Charlie Alsheimer, the rut kicks in the second full moon after the fall equalnox. Fall starts today, full moon number 1 is tomorrow night. That makes the second full moon Oct. 23rd. What do you think? Early rut or not?

Steve

From: HerdManager ........ No Violations Reported on this individual No Violations Reported on this individual No Violations Reported on this individual ....... Date: 22-Sep-10


No early rut. No late rut. It is based on, and triggered by, the length of daylight in the day. Period.

It's the same time every year. EVERY year.

I don't know who this Charlie guy is, but he is definitely NOT a bowhunter.

From: scs ........ No Violations Reported on this individual No Violations Reported on this individual No Violations Reported on this individual ....... Date: 22-Sep-10


He's a deer biologist from New York that writes for Deer and Deer Hunting Magazine.

From: spider1 ........ No Violations Reported on this individual No Violations Reported on this individual No Violations Reported on this individual ....... Date: 22-Sep-10


Herd, the photo period changes from year to year and is based (according to Alsheimer and others) on not only the amount of daylight but also the timiong of the full moons. This year the Automn Equinox moon is very early. I just finished reading Alsheimers book a few weeks ago and in it he estimated the timing of the chase phase of the rut to be in late October. But just to be on the safe side, I took vacation at the end of October and beginning of November... with plenty of time on the side for "emergency leave" ;)

scs, Alsheimer isn't a biologist. He's a wildlife photographer who worked very closly with deer biologists. Many of whom helped him write his book.

From: HerdManager ........ No Violations Reported on this individual No Violations Reported on this individual No Violations Reported on this individual ....... Date: 22-Sep-10


My point exactly. He's not a hunter.

They have done many studies to determine when does are bred. The majority of does are ALWAYS bred in early November. Every year. It does not change.

From: spider1 ........ No Violations Reported on this individual No Violations Reported on this individual No Violations Reported on this individual ....... Date: 22-Sep-10


no, actually, he is a hunter. And the chase phase is different than the breeding phase. The actual breeding happens in that time period where the deer seem to disappear. The fact is, they are all finding quiet places to do what boys and girls do. The time before that is the chase phase, that's when the bucks are running all over looking for girls to do it with. That is the time to be in the woods and according to a guy that spends more time watching deer than guys like us can (since it's his job) and spends more time with biologists who did those studies you are talking about, I would say that does make him something of an authority on the subject. But he also says that there are other factors involved. Weather, temps, stuff like that. But photoperiodism is what triggers the deer to start gearing up for breeding and that would include not only daylight but full moon light and it's timing as well.

From: Jeff Durnell ........ No Violations Reported on this individual No Violations Reported on this individual No Violations Reported on this individual ....... Date: 22-Sep-10


Some successful trophy hunters, in states with longer bow seasons, say they'd rather hunt mid November than any other time. That's when the girls stop being as easy, and the BIG boys aren't ready to quit yet. They cover more ground then, especially during legal hunting hours, than any other time. The early chase phase seems to be more for the youngin's willing to waste their energy.

That reminds me, ya ever heard the one....

A young bull and an old bull standing on a hill, overlooking a pasture full of cows.

Young bull says, "I'm going to run down there and breed one of them cows!"

The old bull says, "Go ahead. I'm gonna WALK down there and breed em ALL!"

From: daleheth ........ No Violations Reported on this individual No Violations Reported on this individual No Violations Reported on this individual ....... Date: 22-Sep-10


his article in deer & deer hunting doesn't count this one as the first full moon after autumnal equinox. I don't know why and it doesn't explain. He claims that it will be a late rut this year with a small rut like period in early November and the heavy rut around thanksgiving. Take it for what its worth

From: scs ........ No Violations Reported on this individual No Violations Reported on this individual No Violations Reported on this individual ....... Date: 22-Sep-10


Sorry, I thought he was a biologist, also. I've heard him speak numerous times. Don't totally believe him, but he's entertaining! Steve

From: George D. Stout ........ No Violations Reported on this individual No Violations Reported on this individual No Violations Reported on this individual ....... Date: 22-Sep-10


Here's an interesting thought; hunt every day you can and you will probably be there during the rut. There really is no "one time" that can apply...to think so is ridiculous. Just go to the woods and hunt. Bucks are actually more predictable when they are not running all over the place looking for does.

From: Brad Gehman ........ No Violations Reported on this individual No Violations Reported on this individual No Violations Reported on this individual ....... Date: 22-Sep-10


If the rut is supposed to change from year to year, why so we see fawns being born at the same time each year? Huh? Can someone answer that?

In northern climes, fawns have to be born at the same time each year. If early, its too cold and they die, too late, and they are not large enough going into winter, and they die.

From: Brad Gehman ........ No Violations Reported on this individual No Violations Reported on this individual No Violations Reported on this individual ....... Date: 22-Sep-10

Brad Gehman's embedded Photo



See if this shows up or not.

From: NockTaker ........ No Violations Reported on this individual No Violations Reported on this individual No Violations Reported on this individual ....... Date: 22-Sep-10


From: Treerat ........ No Violations Reported on this individual No Violations Reported on this individual No Violations Reported on this individual ....... Date: 22-Sep-10


scs I think what Alshimer is saying is that the full moon triggers the rut to start. He claims the actual breeding takes place during the darkness of the new moon phase.

Alshimer claims the full moon triggers the start of the rut or the seeking phase. The seeking phase lasts for a few days on either side of the full moon and then goes into the chasing phase that lasts 7-10 days and leads into the breeding phase.

I have been paying attention to his predictions for several years and I have noticed that the phases of the rut do seem to happen in the areas I hunt at SLIGHTLY different times every year. Not exactly the same time every year.

If you only hunt PA you are out of the woods after Nov 12 most years. I have been hunting Ohio and NY since 1987. I hunt almost every day in Nov at least morning or evening if not all day long since 1987. Some years I do not see chasing until mid Nov and see breeding in late Nov. Some years I see chasing in early Nov and breeding in the middle of Nov.

I do not know if the full moon has anything to do with these observations I have made over the years, nor do I know if Alshimer is right or not. Infact I could care less because I will always take my vacation during the first three weeks of Nov and hunt everyday I can. My three best bow bucks were all taken on Nov 10th. The three best bucks after that were taken Nov2-4.

Hunt in Nov and you will be ok regardless of moon phase.

Mike

From: Ben Farmer ........ No Violations Reported on this individual No Violations Reported on this individual No Violations Reported on this individual ....... Date: 22-Sep-10


I agree Mike.

If i only had 1 week to hunt, i would take Nov.7th to Nov.13th every year.

Then like Jeff said, I have seen some of my biggest bucks on the move in and around the 20th of Nov. in Ohio. I dont see as many at this time of year but you do have a good chance at seeing a real slammer!

I think the weather and the temperature are the 2 biggest factors when it comes to deer movement during the rut. You get a calm frosty morning with the temperature around 30 on November 10th and your gonna see some action. If the temps are 75 degrees on November 10th things might be a little slow except for early morning and late evening. On the days with high temps, the bucks will be doing most of their running around at night.

From: Bourbonator ........ No Violations Reported on this individual No Violations Reported on this individual No Violations Reported on this individual ....... Date: 22-Sep-10


Alsheimer's a whack job, kinda like scent loc works! You can't predict the rut! The rut is when it happens, if your lucky enough to be on stand that day you'll get to hunt it!

From: Treerat ........ No Violations Reported on this individual No Violations Reported on this individual No Violations Reported on this individual ....... Date: 22-Sep-10


Yes Ben I agree with you and Jeff, I have seen some real monsters between Nov 18-22. In Ohio in 2008 on Nov 18 I should have had a 180+ typical 10 point with 9 inch brow tines. Never got a shot off at him but should have. He caught me drawing on him aahhh!

And you are right on with the weather and daytime temp, it can kill movement if the temp is above normals.

Your right Burbon the rut is going to happens when it happens, that is why I try to get out every day in Nov. It is a real shame that PA does not allow you to hunt all the way up till gun season. You miss out on alot of rutting activity hunting PA.

Mike

From: williethebarber ........ No Violations Reported on this individual No Violations Reported on this individual No Violations Reported on this individual ....... Date: 22-Sep-10


Cant say about the above gentleman but saw some scrapes today scouting. There are always early fawns every spring. I have a theory that the older does come in heat first to assure they get bred by the dominate bucks. I believe the rut starts way earlier than most of us think and hits its peak in mid November.

From: Brad Gehman ........ No Violations Reported on this individual No Violations Reported on this individual No Violations Reported on this individual ....... Date: 23-Sep-10


Saw 15-20 scrapes the other night in Lebanon County. Some rather large ones. Not a place I ever hunted before, but may get a stand in there just to observe what is going on for future hunts.

From: RC ........ No Violations Reported on this individual No Violations Reported on this individual No Violations Reported on this individual ....... Date: 23-Sep-10


Well now what do I do, take off the first or second week of November, or the last week of October? Think I'll take the first week of November to try and hit the middle.

From: Brad Gehman ........ No Violations Reported on this individual No Violations Reported on this individual No Violations Reported on this individual ....... Date: 23-Sep-10


Nov 4, 5, and 6. Just be in the woods for sure those days.

Pray for low temps.

From: Flintknocker ........ No Violations Reported on this individual No Violations Reported on this individual No Violations Reported on this individual ....... Date: 23-Sep-10

Flintknocker's embedded Photo



There was work done in Canada some years ago that correlates real well to what I see, and makes sense when integrated with whitetail or, actually, all mammal ecology. Mother Nature strives real hard in her way to ensure that the gene codes she has worked so hard to see survive, do so perpetually. There is a lot of evidence, mine and others to indicate that the odds are real high that the alpha buck in any given range WILL pair with the alpha doe. And that she will be the first doe in that given range to come into estrus. That, and it will be within a matter of just one or two days of the same day by LUNAR calendar. The Canadian researcher found that alpha males were keenly aware of this timing, not by the calender..but by their noses, being able to read not only estrus phase condition during the rut, but pretty much all year long. Initial, or what is truly a 'primary' scrape are made about a month before a lot of folks even start their scouting in ernest. Ironically I've found that these sites were first 'scuffed' AND that three and four year rubs (primary sign posts, 4-8 inch stuff) were touched at the same time the weekend of the PA Bowfestival. Approx. September 16-20. Now, the estrus cycle for deer is about the same as it is for humans, 28 days givertake, which is a lunar phase/lunar month, and oddly enough both are tied to the full moon timing. (they tell me it works for cabbage, too:) Hot weather IS a factor, so bottom line..although you may 'miss' the intial odd pairing and successful mating which 'could' occur in September..it is rare. The BIG one comes in October...givertake 28 daus after the rise in estrogen in September. The single highest odds you have to catch that alpha buck on that scrape is the morning or two BEFORE she, the alpha doe actually comes into estrus. The research showed that these primary scrapes were opened, WIDE OPENED about three days before that date, and fiercely monitored as about every other buck in the area wants a piece of that action, too..which means they are exceedingly hard to approach without alerting the maker, but if you can, you can see some of the wildest whitetail action you'll ever see. Many hunters that do manage to catch this scenario shoot a real fine buck, but the research shows it is most often a subordinate buck, as the alpha seldom visits the scrape itself during daylight hours, spending his time in the periphery looking for Mrs. Alpha, and running off contenders. Now here's the klinker in all this: Once alpha pairing occurs, Mr. Big considering himself the King Almighty...most often takes a serious, long, way out of his hiome range hike, ostensibly to share those King genes with other lucky does in other far flung places. Evidence shows he SELDOM returns to the area of the primary scrape, until the following year should he survive. Which accounts for why so many of us have asked ourselves, "now why'd that scrape go so dead?". These scrape sites are classic, and perrenial. They are chosen for a lot of reasons; topography, WATER, soil, and overstory. Nearly always found where the soil stays at least damp year round. Many will show show year round passive use, but as a rule that is the entire herd just walking through a known 'deer spot', but they do leave scent evidence that is like a social registry as they do so, and ya'd better believe every deer that walks through, knows every other deer, and every thing about it...by its nose. I once loved to play this game, and it is, if played correctly, all consuming and exhausting. I'm more in Durnell's and RC's camp now. I just like to poke around in the bush with my bow:)

From: MF ........ No Violations Reported on this individual No Violations Reported on this individual No Violations Reported on this individual ....... Date: 23-Sep-10


I see more activity the last week of Oct. than early Nov. up in Tioga. Then I'll find bodacious rubs and scrapes during rifle and the late season that were not there at the end of archery. Still tryin' to figure it out.

From: MF ........ No Violations Reported on this individual No Violations Reported on this individual No Violations Reported on this individual ....... Date: 23-Sep-10


I see more activity the last week of Oct. than early Nov. up in Tioga. Then I'll find bodacious rubs and scrapes during rifle and the late season that were not there at the end of archery. Still tryin' to figure it out.

From: Jeff Durnell ........ No Violations Reported on this individual No Violations Reported on this individual No Violations Reported on this individual ....... Date: 23-Sep-10


Yep that's me, Ed. Just out pokin' around :^)

I should be packing for camp now, but it's such a lovely morning I think I'm gonna jump in my boots and take the hundred year yew for a stroll, maybe loose one off the hill for Glenn.

'sides, I think I heard a mushroom sproutin' when I was out there a minute ago :^)

What rut...

From: Jeff Durnell ........ No Violations Reported on this individual No Violations Reported on this individual No Violations Reported on this individual ....... Date: 23-Sep-10

Jeff Durnell's embedded Photo



Yep, just lovely.

The colors changing... The dank, earthy smell of a fall dewey morning coupled with the sights and sounds of two merging V's of geese overhead in the thinning fog... squirrels hunting acorns all around me.

Wow.

This is absolutely my favorite time of year.

From: Jeff Durnell ........ No Violations Reported on this individual No Violations Reported on this individual No Violations Reported on this individual ....... Date: 23-Sep-10


I found three(two are under my bow in the picture), but left the mushrooms unmolested. I just don't have time to care for em now. If they're there when I get back from camp in a few days, maybe then.

From: Bone Collector ........ No Violations Reported on this individual No Violations Reported on this individual No Violations Reported on this individual ....... Date: 23-Sep-10


Bone Collector's Supporting Link

This is kind of long, but a good read. It came from a deer farmer right here in PA. The whole story was about scent and why it works, but the rut part fits perfect with this thread. The whole story can be read at the attached link...if it works!

As the fall equinox settles in on or around September 22nd, there is more darkness in a 24-hour period than there is daylight. This triggers the production of a hormone the initiates the start of the estrous cycle in the doe. A doe cycle is 26-28 days in length and is a 2-phase cycle. The first 13-14 days of her estrous cycle is controlled by the reproductive hormone "progesterone". The last 13-14 days of her cycle is controlled by the reproductive hormone "estrogen".

Picture if you will chemical messengers circulating through the blood stream, feeding information from the ovaries back the hypothalamus located in the brain. The kidneys doing what they are designed to do, filter the chemical ketones and they ultimately end up in the urine the doe passes.

Now as the buck is walking along and sampling urine via a lip curl, he is able to detect the estrogen that starts to show up in the urine at about 14 -16 days into the doe's estrous cycle. Now the buck knows that the doe are approaching "estrus" and the chase phase has begun.

As the doe are nearing their 12-24 hours of estrus or standing heat, they are peaked at their highest levels of estrogen production, which triggers the behavioral signs of heat. Although the doe is not fully into the corpus luteum phase (ovulation), she is peaked and just about ready to allow the buck to mount her. Just as the estrogen levels start the decrease, the doe is triggered into ovulation by a sudden increase of a hormone called luitinizing hormone = LH. This is the time during the estrous cycle that you see the bucks locked up with a doe and in a few hours the doe will stand and allow the buck to mount her....

Now with the basic reproductive physiology explained, this process in the doe is known as the estrous cycle. The estrous cycle is a 26-28 cycle, all-leading up to estrus, which only last for 12-24 hours. Should the doe not be bred during estrus, she will start her 26-28 day estrous cycle all over again. She will keep cycling though until she is bred or the production of melatonin drops off in the spring due to the spring equinox and increased day length.

The peak breeding stages of the rut are about the same each year and that is 100% factual. However, I don't believe the peak breeding stages of rut are spread out 3-4 weeks. I agree with peak breeding being +/- 1 week but 21-30+ days has no scientific explanation other than unseasonable weather and the health of the doe. A doe is genetically programmed to a cycle 26-28 days for her estrous cycle, just as a woman in her menstrual cycle. These cycles are closely related in time frame of 28 days. However, doe are seasonally polyestrous where woman are not. There is a trigger by Mother Nature that induces the estrous cycle of the doe. What is it you ask? I strongly agree with the moon theory only as a timekeeper. Let me explain. The lunar cycle of the moon is a 27-29 day cycle. If the doe were to start their estrous cycle on a new or full moon, they would cycle again on the next new or full moon simply due the relation in cycle lengths -- 26-28 for the doe and 27-29 for the lunar. So yes, I can see some relevancy in the lunar cycle matching the cycle of peak breeding activity during rut. Do I believe the moon triggers the breeding activity of deer, absolutely NOT!!

Going back to the reproductive physiology of the doe and the optic nerve, melatonin production, etc, I have come to believe that 12-13 hours of darkness is the trigger that initiates the onset of the estrous cycle. Remember, the doe is the one that control the breeding - NOT THE BUCK... Looking at sunrise and sunset times here in Pa the first day of 12 hours of darkness is September 27th. Just for example purposes lets say the conditions are ideal and the doe starts her cycle. 26-28 days later she will be in estrus. This would put the doe being in estrus on October 25th, which coincides with what most hunters see in the woods. Although this peak in breeding is not all that intense, there is breeding taking place. I personally believe that the doe that lost their fawns or did not have fawns in the spring are the ones that will cycle first. I believe this simply because doe that are with fawns are still producing milk in their mammary glands and this is controlled by increased prolactin, which prolactin represses the normal levels of sex hormones.

Say the doe didn't get bred on October 25th and she cycles through again. That would put her in estrus again on November 22nd and if she were bred her fawns would be born around June 9th 2008. These are real numbers and fall well within the time lines we each see in the woods each year, at least here in Pennsylvania that is.

From: lazer2 ........ No Violations Reported on this individual No Violations Reported on this individual No Violations Reported on this individual ....... Date: 23-Sep-10


Thank you bone collector for the truth

From: vcruz079 ........ No Violations Reported on this individual No Violations Reported on this individual No Violations Reported on this individual ....... Date: 23-Sep-10


Good read!

From: RC ........ No Violations Reported on this individual No Violations Reported on this individual No Violations Reported on this individual ....... Date: 23-Sep-10


That's why I drink PBR and take a whizz in my mock scrape every time just prior to my hunt. Drives them thar deers cwazy:) Never believed in that stale old bottled 100% doe in estrous bull-crap.

From: muzzy100 ........ No Violations Reported on this individual No Violations Reported on this individual No Violations Reported on this individual ....... Date: 23-Sep-10


nov 6th is a saturday this year. everyone should definately try an all day sit that day if u have the time and still have a tag.

From: Tombow ........ No Violations Reported on this individual No Violations Reported on this individual No Violations Reported on this individual ....... Date: 28-Sep-10


Go to late rut prediction on the main forum under whitetail.

From: Bourbonator ........ No Violations Reported on this individual No Violations Reported on this individual No Violations Reported on this individual ....... Date: 28-Sep-10


Rut? My buck will be dead long before he gets horny!

From: Bob Hildenbrand ........ No Violations Reported on this individual No Violations Reported on this individual No Violations Reported on this individual ....... Date: 28-Sep-10


I will be sick from work on November 5th. At my work you can't work Saturday(O-time) if you don't work Friday:^)

From: Nattybumppo ........ No Violations Reported on this individual No Violations Reported on this individual No Violations Reported on this individual ....... Date: 29-Sep-10


Nice graph Brad. I usually try to come to PA 1st week of November, just before the rut peaks. Cold weather during that week makes for awesome chasing in the mornings.

From: WFG in NM ........ No Violations Reported on this individual No Violations Reported on this individual No Violations Reported on this individual ....... Date: 29-Sep-10


Looking forward to being in PA November 4th through 14th.

--Bill




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Subject: RE: Timing the rut

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