Post Rut Tactics

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DeanoZ
 
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Post Rut Tactics

Postby DeanoZ » Wed Dec 10, 2008 4:40 am

ok we are coming up on the close of the firearms season for many in the northeast.  the first rut is just about over, the seondary rut will begin probably this weekend.  I've not taken my buck yet so I plan to hunt post season, to include winter bow in january if neccessary.  So my question is what can I expect in terms of buck movement and habitat in the post season?  How much will the second rut affect this?  I've talked to some other experienced hunter and here is what they have to say:
 
1.  Its all about the foodsource...the bucks will resume their prerut travel habits/patterns and feed to put on weight for the winter..go where the food is and thats where you can expect them to be.
2.  Safety in numbers...you can expect the bucks to move with the does.  After being pressured from the firearms season they will move in groups
3.  Hunt the afternoons vice the mornings...the deer are tryign to conserve energy and will move less in the mornings, but mostly in the afternoons?
4. For the latter half of Decemeber you can expect the deer to still be skiddish and hunkered down/traveling through the thicker stuff..their still skiddish fromt he firearms season pressure.  Thsi would make sense except it conflicts with comment #1 where deer will resume their normal prerut travel routes/patterns..I even had one friend suggest that I stay out of the woods entirely for the rest of december..let things clam down, figure out where their going and then hit it hard in january...not so sure about this especially with the secondary rut.
5.  Swamps are a good place to hunt in the post season...skiddish deer love hiding out there and they water is warmer than the airtemp hence the deer tend to bed there in winter.
6.  Can i expect bucks to continue using their scrapes or create new scrapes through the secondary rut?
 
Ok, so thats what I've heard, any feedback is appreciated, i need to start formulating my post season hunting plans.
 

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mag30079
 
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RE: Post Rut Tactics

Postby mag30079 » Wed Dec 10, 2008 5:49 am

Thats pretty much spot on. I read an article the other day on post rut hunting. The peice that jumped out at me was deer will sun them self on the south side of a hill. I stopped and thought about this. I've seen this before but never really thought about it. I've seen fresh beds in the post season like late Jan early Feb.
Driving to work yeserday, the south side of a hill had no snow but the north side was still covered. I fet this peice of the puzzle was like that hidden funnel I walked by many times and then one day stopping finally noticed, son of a how did I miss this...[&:]

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ranwin33
 
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Location: Kansas and Missouri

RE: Post Rut Tactics

Postby ranwin33 » Wed Dec 10, 2008 6:30 am

Food sources are key - this may be a second rut, but the deer will be trying to recover from the first one and gettin ready for winter.  With far fewer does to breed there will still be some seeking going on, but nothing with the same urgency as the first.

As for #4, my experience is that deer settle back into their normal patterns relatively quickly after the hunters leave the woods and the shooting stops.  Studies regarding hound hunting effecting deer indicate that deer tend to return to normal patterns just a couple of days after the hounds/hunters leave the woods - so I wouldn't stay out of the woods with the idea you need to let things calm down.  They probably already are.

#6, I wouldn't look for new scrapes, but find a line of primary scrapes and see if they might be active.  Most probably only get a visit at night, but you might get lucky.
“There are two spiritual dangers in not owning a farm. One is the danger of supposing that breakfast comes from the grocery, and the other that heat comes from the furnace.”
Aldo Leopold

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8uck5nort
 
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RE: Post Rut Tactics

Postby 8uck5nort » Wed Dec 10, 2008 7:28 am

ORIGINAL: DeanoZ

ok we are coming up on the close of the firearms season for many in the northeast.  the first rut is just about over, the seondary rut will begin probably this weekend.  I've not taken my buck yet so I plan to hunt post season, to include winter bow in january if neccessary.  So my question is what can I expect in terms of buck movement and habitat in the post season?  How much will the second rut affect this?  I've talked to some other experienced hunter and here is what they have to say:

1.  Its all about the foodsource...the bucks will resume their prerut travel habits/patterns and feed to put on weight for the winter..go where the food is and thats where you can expect them to be.
2.  Safety in numbers...you can expect the bucks to move with the does.  After being pressured from the firearms season they will move in groups
3.  Hunt the afternoons vice the mornings...the deer are tryign to conserve energy and will move less in the mornings, but mostly in the afternoons?
4. For the latter half of Decemeber you can expect the deer to still be skiddish and hunkered down/traveling through the thicker stuff..their still skiddish fromt he firearms season pressure.  Thsi would make sense except it conflicts with comment #1 where deer will resume their normal prerut travel routes/patterns..I even had one friend suggest that I stay out of the woods entirely for the rest of december..let things clam down, figure out where their going and then hit it hard in january...not so sure about this especially with the secondary rut.
5.  Swamps are a good place to hunt in the post season...skiddish deer love hiding out there and they water is warmer than the airtemp hence the deer tend to bed there in winter.
6.  Can i expect bucks to continue using their scrapes or create new scrapes through the secondary rut?

Ok, so thats what I've heard, any feedback is appreciated, i need to start formulating my post season hunting plans.


 
I am by no means a late season expert, but here is my plan of attack.
 
I will be out this weekend for second rut action if my math is right. Dunno since this is the first year I am trying this out.
 
I will be hunting a travel route to and from a number of cut corn and bean fields. I have not seen the herd really bunch up yet, but I know they do when the temps really drop. I definitely see much more deer in open fields in the evening than morning.
 
This will be only my second year hunting in december. Last year almost all of the deer I did see was between 9:30 am and 1:30 pm so I will concentrate my efforts on mid morning and noon. Take a break then set up for the evening hunt.
 
I am planning on using the early morning to setup the last of my estrus scents to create a "hot spot" for the mid am and noon time hunts. Last year I did nothing, but put the time in the stand cause I didn't know about a second rut. Will use the rattle bag (sparingly, once maybe twice in a day), estrus bleat can (every 30 to 45 min) and grunt tube as required for the first two (short snort/wheezes for rattle bag and young buck tending grunts for the can).
 
I am planning on breaking out my trail camera again and setup to see where they are moving, by end of ML (Dec 21st). I am not hunting the last week of Dec or first week of Jan. (Jan 4th is end of season).
 
I have one very small swampy area that since gun season opened has been virtualy deer free so I may just check up on that spot to see if anything has been moving through.
 
Dunno bout scrapes and rubs this late in season.
 
Good luck
Veni, Vidi, Sagittam Mittere, now I'm ready for my nap :)

DeanoZ
 
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RE: Post Rut Tactics

Postby DeanoZ » Wed Dec 10, 2008 8:31 am

Thanks all appreciate the feedback, keep it coming.  Just to clarify my question regarding scrapes, I was really wondering if deer would continue to use the same trail that scrapes are located along AFTER the rut?  To me it makes sense that they would, although they wouldn't neccessarily re-scrape or create new scrapes.

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ranwin33
 
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RE: Post Rut Tactics

Postby ranwin33 » Wed Dec 10, 2008 9:55 am

ORIGINAL: DeanoZ

Thanks all appreciate the feedback, keep it coming.  Just to clarify my question regarding scrapes, I was really wondering if deer would continue to use the same trail that scrapes are located along AFTER the rut?  To me it makes sense that they would, although they wouldn't neccessarily re-scrape or create new scrapes.

Yes, they will still check them out.
“There are two spiritual dangers in not owning a farm. One is the danger of supposing that breakfast comes from the grocery, and the other that heat comes from the furnace.”
Aldo Leopold


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