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Rut ready stud
Whitetail Deer
Contributors to this thread:
SaddleReaper 31-Oct-22
Supernaut 31-Oct-22
deerhunter72 31-Oct-22
APauls 31-Oct-22
LOSTNwoods 31-Oct-22
t-roy 31-Oct-22
Grey Ghost 31-Oct-22
Bowfreak 31-Oct-22
Norseman 31-Oct-22
Bou'bound 31-Oct-22
drycreek 31-Oct-22
SBH 31-Oct-22
SaddleReaper 31-Oct-22
SaddleReaper 31-Oct-22
TREESTANDWOLF 31-Oct-22
KSJHawk 31-Oct-22
Pat Lefemine 31-Oct-22
t-roy 31-Oct-22
SaddleReaper 03-Nov-22
SaddleReaper 03-Nov-22
SaddleReaper 03-Nov-22
SaddleReaper 03-Nov-22
t-roy 03-Nov-22
SaddleReaper 03-Nov-22
SaddleReaper 03-Nov-22
SaddleReaper 03-Nov-22
Nick Muche 03-Nov-22
SaddleReaper 03-Nov-22
SaddleReaper 03-Nov-22
HUNT MAN 03-Nov-22
Grey Ghost 03-Nov-22
bentstick54 03-Nov-22
Buffalo1 03-Nov-22
John in MO / KY 03-Nov-22
hdaman 03-Nov-22
njbuck 03-Nov-22
deerhunter72 03-Nov-22
Supernaut 03-Nov-22
Bowfinatic 03-Nov-22
Bou’bound 03-Nov-22
SaddleReaper 03-Nov-22
Ironbow 03-Nov-22
t-roy 03-Nov-22
M.Pauls 03-Nov-22
JohnMC 03-Nov-22
Meat Grinder 03-Nov-22
KSflatlander 03-Nov-22
2Wild Bill 03-Nov-22
Inshart 03-Nov-22
deerhunter72 03-Nov-22
SaddleReaper 04-Nov-22
Live2Hunt 04-Nov-22
midwest 04-Nov-22
From: SaddleReaper
31-Oct-22

SaddleReaper's embedded Photo
SaddleReaper's embedded Photo
Check out the Sept to late Oct. pre rut swell on this NY buck! Got pretty lucky with this set of pictures. He's no less than 5 and more likely 6 based on what he looked like back in 2019. He's been a hard one to nail down. Saw him my first evening sit around the 10th and haven't laid eyes on him since. Hopefully this coming week or 2 he gets vulnerable when I'm out there!

From: Supernaut
31-Oct-22
Really cool pics that show the changes that happen.

Good luck, hope you get a shot at him and enjoy your hunt!

From: deerhunter72
31-Oct-22
Those pics are almost identical! That’s really cool and his neck sure is swollen. Hope you get a shot at him, good luck!

From: APauls
31-Oct-22
That's what steroids will do to you lol. Very cool thanks for sharing. Love that boxy frame.

From: LOSTNwoods
31-Oct-22
Wow great deer good luck,

From: t-roy
31-Oct-22
What I want to know is, how do you get them to stand in the same spot?!

From: Grey Ghost
31-Oct-22
Now that's a buck with a very specific pattern!! Awesome pics.

Matt

From: Bowfreak
31-Oct-22
Agreed Troy. I believe I would hang a stand nearby.

From: Norseman
31-Oct-22
Very cool pics.

From: Bou'bound
31-Oct-22
Amazing comparison

From: drycreek
31-Oct-22
He looks like he’s serious ! Hope you get him……

From: SBH
31-Oct-22
That's wicked cool. Awesome pics of a great deer.

From: SaddleReaper
31-Oct-22
T-Roy...man if only I knew the answer to that Id figure out a way to market and sell the secret to some 15 million hunters :)

Theres a small opening right beside the tree that the camera is on into some pine woods, the edge along either side of the camera is fairly brushy, so naturally as they stop before going into the woods or between the corn and woods they tend to look inside. Conversely I get a lot of pics of them stepping out of the woods and stopping there or coming up around the corner of the corn where it meets open field and stopping.... just an obvious camera location, and 2 very, very lucky captures!

From: SaddleReaper
31-Oct-22
Thanks everyone for the good luck wishes.... I'll need all the help I can get.

Hunting at that location is likely not going to pay off (have only captured him there 3 times in that time span, 1 time at night), and would be surrounded by deer so inevitably get busted before he shows up. Its right in the hub of all the action but super exposed to get to or from.

31-Oct-22
How fortunate to get both those pics!

Now go let the air out of him.

Good luck to you.

From: KSJHawk
31-Oct-22
I don’t see the resemblance. Different bucks for sure.

From: Pat Lefemine
31-Oct-22
That's a giant for NY. I wish I had a buck like that on my NY Property! Good luck getting him, he's gotta be smart to stay alive this long.

NY has the worst deer management program in the country, bar none.

From: t-roy
31-Oct-22
Any previous history with that guy, saddle? If so, curious as to his progression.

From: SaddleReaper
03-Nov-22

SaddleReaper's embedded Photo
SaddleReaper's embedded Photo
SaddleReaper's embedded Photo
I guessed him 3 here... its safe to say no less than 2. Many of my experienced friends agreed. I saw him on the hoof in 2019 a few times. In 2020 I didn't run cams nor hunt that piece.
SaddleReaper's embedded Photo
I guessed him 3 here... its safe to say no less than 2. Many of my experienced friends agreed. I saw him on the hoof in 2019 a few times. In 2020 I didn't run cams nor hunt that piece.
I thought the same - very fortunate set of pictures and the odds of them being so perfectly matched is just wild!

Pat, deer of his size aren't too uncommon in WNY, I know I've said this before. But his age however is a small miracle - this area will see a deer drive on opening morning and each week following, with guys toting ammo belts lined with slugs (I'm dead serious). In 10 years of hunting it I've seen 2 make it to 5 or 6, and they do it by vacating the area, retreating to a large sanctuary a mile away, I'm almost certain.

T- Roy you asked for progression pics.... I guess I'll play. ;-)

From: SaddleReaper
03-Nov-22

SaddleReaper's embedded Photo
SaddleReaper's embedded Photo
SaddleReaper's embedded Photo
SaddleReaper's embedded Photo
SaddleReaper's embedded Photo
This bucks personality was super wary (he just found that cam). He hated cameras. Had to begin placing them up high above my head. He would avoid them once he discovered them.
SaddleReaper's embedded Photo
This bucks personality was super wary (he just found that cam). He hated cameras. Had to begin placing them up high above my head. He would avoid them once he discovered them.
2020 as mentioned I didn't hunt the property where he was at, nor did I run cameras in that area. I was solely focused on a big non typ that I'd been after for 4 years.

In 2021 I did scout that property a bit. And captured some up close footage of him in the soybeans one evening. Again come fall my attention was elsewhere on another biiiig buck (got poached in end of firearms). But I saw this buck late one morning while driving around after my morning sit. He was alive into the first week of gun, chasing a doe onto the property this farm owns where I hunt. I did not pursue him that year either.

From: SaddleReaper
03-Nov-22

SaddleReaper's embedded Photo
SaddleReaper's embedded Photo
2022 - Feb 27th I pick up my first shed from this buck and its half chewed - but he made it! While I have some great deer to hunt again in my other main spot, this buck now has piqued my interest. He grew somewhat in the rack dept. this summer too. But what really intrigues me is his age and the area he lives will see nobody on it until gun season, so for bow season I'll have his (unmolested) home turf to myself. Its an interesting layout of woods surrounded by large fields. Approaching the woods that's choked out with shag bark hickory, buck thorn, and brush, is always a gamble. Its down hill across wide open field to access it and deer tend to spread out in it and surround the area in the evening. Even worse - entering the woods. The hickory leaves pile up and it becomes an absurdly noisy task to get in there if its dry, which its been!

From: SaddleReaper
03-Nov-22

SaddleReaper's embedded Photo
SaddleReaper's embedded Photo
I made a map of the area. The main woods is divided by a driveway that cuts through the field and over the hill down to the woods. This is usually the primary access point (I park truck where T's are depending on morning or evening). This year however I got permission to access from a homeowner on the south end of the property. The area in blue is the property I can hunt. The fields were split between wheat and corn on this property this year. I drilled in some buckwheat, sorghum and BnB in the purple boxes in late summer. I wasn't planning to hunt over 2 of 3 as they are to serve as hidden late season and shed season food sources. The one small box by the "floating" fence row is the only huntable food plot of the 3. In Oct. 2nd I made a pre-set in the woods where the yellow X is. I have not hunted inside this southern section of woods in probably 7 years. Its super thick along the east edge. I cut a trail into it so I could access the woods without touching anything. I cleared away the leaves. I knew deer would use it but also figured I wouldn't be hunting it until rut-ish. Blue dotted line is an old logging rd from well before I ever hunted here. This south section of woods sets up well for cruising bucks even though the cover and bedding is primarily along the east edge and SE corner. I circled some of the major bedding areas and drew directions of travel I frequently see each evening as the pour out of the woods all around. Its common to see 20+ on a good evening. The white circle is the camera that captured the cool comparison pics. The light blue circle to the SE is where I saw the buck on Oct. 10th - my first evening sit from the observation point in the floating fencerow ( yellow X). Yellow line from S is my access route through a sort of valley up the middle where it develops to a hill where the floating fencline lays along the crest. I was not expecting to see him to my SE Which is where I typically plan on having my wind blow with prevailing winds anywhere this time of year usually from the S, SW, W or NW. The property far east is close to a road and multiple homes but a surprising number of deer filter out each night... not usually the mature bucks though. Most of the action should be west of me at that spot. I hunted the observation spot many evenings throughout Oct. bc it allows me to see possibly 120+acres worth of ground with tons of edges to monitor. I can really get a read on what's coming out, and where.

I made this initial post a few days ago of the comparison pics not knowing truly where he was bedding or if he was even in the area, as I hadn't seen him since the 10th, and had seen nearly all the other bucks I know of on the property since then.

From: t-roy
03-Nov-22
Very cool, Saddle! Hope you get a crack at him, especially since you’re putting the time in on him!

From: SaddleReaper
03-Nov-22

SaddleReaper's embedded Photo
the 3yr old 8 if you look closely off the end of my step.
SaddleReaper's embedded Photo
the 3yr old 8 if you look closely off the end of my step.
SaddleReaper's embedded Photo
SaddleReaper's embedded Photo
SaddleReaper's embedded Photo
SaddleReaper's embedded Photo
If you haven't figured it out by now; this progression series is gonna get interesting...….. :)

I haven't seen any real evidence of a (nearing) hot doe on this property but was seeing it on nearby properties. Nov. 1st was slated for a SW wind between 6-7am switching WSW by 8am. Leaves were damp from light precip the evening before. I decided to give my pre-set in the timber a shot for my first morning sit on the property. I also decided to access from the East entrance parking further back than normal so not to round the bend into view with headlights. Plan was to glass my way in and even though it was dark I'd be able to make out darker deer blobs against the wheat stubble if they were there. Under a very calm and clear sky, I made my way along the driveway then down along the corn and eventually up over the hill down to the woods. Conveniently the farm just tilled between the crest of the hill and woods for about the last 100 yards, so my approach to the woods edge was dead silent. I didn't see or hear a single deer bust me as I tip toed very slowly into the timber. All was quiet (except 500,000 squirrels gathering hickory nuts) until around 730 when I had a 3yr old junky racked buck move through along the east edge. I passed the test as he never busted me.

9am. Oddly I had just responded to a friend's text after he asked how the hunting was going as of late- with something like "rather uneventful, besides the turkeys out in the field and squirrels". So I began to count turkeys through a gap in the trees behind me when I realized a sound, which would be in front of me (I was spun all the way around), was actually a deer walking by. I turn to see a different 3yr old 8 cruising by. Followed up by a dink. They continue along the transition between logging rd and bedding out of sight to my NE but I know they aren't far since I lost sight of them about 15 yards away haha. Then the dink loops around back into sight and comes down wind of me which is now WSW and worrisome with how light and variable the air flow is. I think he may have been on to me as he approaches the base of my tree. Meanwhile all of the turkeys begin to filter inside the woods behind me. Some have already spotted me and are nervously walking around feeding and semi-putting.

925ish am. Suddenly a doe bounds in from the SW heading into the thick of it along the SE edge. Another dink and a 2yr old 8 show up from the direction she ran in from. The same 3yr old 8 suddenly reappears coming back from the N. He eventually ends up at the base of my tree to the W, while another dink is standing at the base to my N. It would appear as if a standoff is beginning. 2 dinks size each other up on while the 3yr old 8 is just standing there for minutes. Suddenly another deer is entering the rodeo, looping in from the NW. Its him! - See red dotted line. I shove my phone into my pocket (had been videoing the action up until then).

No buck is moving as they watch him approach. He's clearly the boss.

He stops at 25ish yards and it seems like he's facing and looking directly at me, but he's actually facing the 3yr old 8 - likely the one whos ass he's gonna kick if he gets in the way of him and the doe! I have no shot and haven't drawn but bow is in hand. I realize he's either going to loop around and intercept the doe (going down wind of me where It's too thick to shoot), or he's gonna break up this party and go directly to her which will take him right by me. The preferable choice takes him through all of my best shooting lanes directly to the W. I watch him make his decision as he stands there surveying the situation. What a sight! He's a glorious creature with a commanding presence. The other bucks skirt around him as he begins his approach.... he's not here to play around.

He begins to walk, I draw, and at 15 yards I attempt to stop his walk, he doesn't in the 1st lane. 2nd one he does (left of bow limb pocket). I release. Shot looks high back lung - I was off my mark a little in the heat of the moment, or he wasn't fully stopped, either way it's gone now. He bounds directly west of me where its nothing but buckthorn leaves. I see him slow and he moves just out of sights. Mind you all the woods came alive in that moment with possibly 31 turkeys, 6 deer, and oodles of squirrels scattering! It was hard to keep track of individual sounds. But I thought I heard him go down... but it was more of a lay down vs a crashing type sound. I wait. Nothing appears to have moved from the vicinity where I last saw him, but turkeys and deer begin to walk about again. I ponder if I caught lung or diaphragm/ liver area. I can see blood from the tree near my arrow in the leaves.... great sign!

I climb down slowly around 10:30, glassing with each step down I take, hoping to get a glimpse though the understory. If he's still alive and I can see him first, I'll back out like a sloth. I glass from ground level and can't see him but I can see to the area I last saw him about 60 yards away. I pick my way to the arrow and hit sight. Good blood. I can see blood spray on the leaves ahead. Glassing with each move I take it up slowly.... I'm fairly certain its not a liver hit. A few yards later I see antler through the binos. There he laid in a depression which is perfectly in line with a stump and a bunch of buckthorn from my tree point of view. He was dead in seconds.

With a little luck on my side, I just bested a master at his own game.... I'm one happy and thankful bowhunter!

From: SaddleReaper
03-Nov-22

SaddleReaper's embedded Photo
SaddleReaper's embedded Photo

From: SaddleReaper
03-Nov-22

SaddleReaper's embedded Photo
SaddleReaper's embedded Photo
SaddleReaper's embedded Photo
pulling that camera for the season. Hows that for progression!
SaddleReaper's embedded Photo
pulling that camera for the season. Hows that for progression!

From: Nick Muche
03-Nov-22
Awesome!!

From: SaddleReaper
03-Nov-22

SaddleReaper's embedded Photo
SaddleReaper's embedded Photo

From: SaddleReaper
03-Nov-22

SaddleReaper's embedded Photo
SaddleReaper's embedded Photo

From: HUNT MAN
03-Nov-22
Great post!!! Thanks

From: Grey Ghost
03-Nov-22
Awesome job, man! Beautiful buck!

Matt

03-Nov-22
That’s fantastic. Congratulations on a super buck.

From: Buffalo1
03-Nov-22
Great story and great buck- congrats !!

03-Nov-22
Awesome! Congrats!

From: hdaman
03-Nov-22
Well done!

From: njbuck
03-Nov-22
Great story and buck, congrats!

From: deerhunter72
03-Nov-22
Wow! Rare to get closure on a buck in the same thread started 4 days ago! Way to get it done! Beautiful buck, congratulations!

From: Supernaut
03-Nov-22
Wow, great write up and pics and a great buck!

Congrats and thanks for sharing with us!

03-Nov-22
Pretty cool! Very nice buck congrats

From: Bou’bound
03-Nov-22
Super deer,story, photos, and write up

From: SaddleReaper
03-Nov-22
Thanks guys!

Deerhunter72- I actually killed him the next morning after starting this thread! Has been a busy few days processing him and catching up on work. But then I realized a great opportunity to spin off of T-roys question about progression with the hunt recap.

From: Ironbow
03-Nov-22
That was great! Congrats!

From: t-roy
03-Nov-22
Glad I could help, in a small way, saddle;-)

Congrats on your success!

From: M.Pauls
03-Nov-22
Unreal! Congrats, total stud!

From: JohnMC
03-Nov-22
Congrats! Good looking buck. I almost did come back to the thread or read past the being. Glad I did.

From: Meat Grinder
03-Nov-22
Awesome buck! Congrats!

From: KSflatlander
03-Nov-22
That wasn’t luck. That one was earned. Congratulations!!!

From: 2Wild Bill
03-Nov-22
Great buck and story, thanks for sharing.

From: Inshart
03-Nov-22
Sure is nice when it all comes together. Outstanding job!!!!!!!!

From: deerhunter72
03-Nov-22
That’s really cool! Hope your luck is catching;)

From: SaddleReaper
04-Nov-22
I guess you could say it is!

Thanks all!

From: Live2Hunt
04-Nov-22
Sorry, carry on, I thought this was a call for me.

From: midwest
04-Nov-22
That was great....congrats!

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