2009-2010 Rut

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NEW61375
 
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2009-2010 Rut

Postby NEW61375 » Wed Mar 11, 2009 8:00 am

I know it's a little early but I can't help it, for the past few seasons I have been taking guesses about the rut in my area based on the first New Moon in the Autumn Equinox (as opposed to the 2nd full moon).  The last couple of seasons have been pretty good and I am tweaking the way I view things a touch (except for the weather, that is never cooperative).  So here is my stab for this year based on my extremely scientific method[;)].

I feel like the dates are always pretty close each year (probably because it's one big cycle) but this year for example is quite different than last year. The first new moon of autumn in 2009 is Oct 18 where as last year it was Sept 29. The first full moon in 2009 is Oct 4 as compared to Oct 14 for 2008, second full moon this year Nov. 2 and last year was Nov 13. These changes in the lunar cycle are rather small in the big scheme of things but I believe they wil certainly effect the phase of the rut this year even if only by 7-14 days(that's a pretty big window).

I am thinking that action will occur slightly later this year and there is a method to my madness.

That brings me to my New Moon theory(rise/set times are very imprtant as well) I mentioned briefly earlier. The first new moon of autumn this season will be Oct 18, so from Oct. 14 to Oct 21 there is almost no sliver of moon the whole week based on the Moon Phase, couple that with the Rise/Set times which shows the moon will be up during the day (for the most part) that entire week (Oct 14 Moon Rise=03:06 am and Set= 4:18 pm / Oct 21 Moon Rise 10:58 am and Set= 8:12 pm) and the days in between are similiar, those two sets of circumstances combined = a complete week of blacked out nights.

The week of dark nights will ensure increased/steady melatonin output from the pineal gland(which boosts hormones linked to reproductive activity in both bucks and does). I think mid October when all this happens the does will start their breeding cycle which lasts 30 days (the last 7 of which she is usually in heat and the last 1-2 does of that seven is when they ususally are receptive to breeding) and the bucks will start showing testosterone boosted behavior(from what I've read/seen). 30 days broke down into seeking=first 20-23 days(approx), chasing=5-7 days, breeding last couple of days.

That week of dark nights is Oct 14 thru Oct 21 (New Moon is the 18th) so,
30 days from Oct 14 is Nov 13, 30 days from Oct 21 is Nov. 20.  So Nov. 13-20 would represent the end (approx) of the cycle based on my theory.
 
This is the part I think is tricky, does don't necessarily start the same day (think women) so while certain family groups of does may have similiar biological clocks others may be a couple of days different, younger does may come in later than older does early or vice versa.  First year does may come in even later and if a doe doesn't get pregnant her first cycle she can come in again later.  I think those are some of the reasons we always get conflicting rut reports during hunting season(that and regional differences).

After looking at the info this morning I think I'll shoot for about Nov. 9-18, depending on the weather of course. A little different than how I've looked at it the past two seasons but it's evolving., and who knows what will happen once October rolls around.
 

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dtrain56
 
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RE: 2009-2010 Rut

Postby dtrain56 » Wed Mar 11, 2009 1:23 pm

great theory but i think that they have proven that the rut is actually induced by the change in day length not the moon phase..i'll have to look up some literature for you on that but i do think it is a photo cell reaction like why trees lose their leaves...

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dtrain56
 
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RE: 2009-2010 Rut

Postby dtrain56 » Wed Mar 11, 2009 2:13 pm

found it
 

[left][font=arial]Length of Day[/font][/left][font=arial]"The length of the day is probably the single most overriding factor in deer breeding. It determines the ideal 200-day time frame for deer breeding and fawning. It remains constant from year to year and it becomes the deer's internal clock and calendar. The first day of summer (June 21st) has the most amount of daylight and the first day of winter (Dec. 22nd) has the least. As the length of the day changes throughout the year, the seasons also change and this triggers the deers' annual life cycle events such as shedding velvet, dropping antlers and breeding. In Western Canada this ideal time frame falls between the second and third week of November. When the deer are bred during this ideal time window, the fawns are born during the maximum survival window.[/font]
[font=arial]Why does light play such an important part of deer breeding? Recent studies indicate the amount of light, or lack of it, directly affects the levels of melatonin in the does. The bucks are ready to breed as early as September, however they must wait for the[/font] [font=arial]does to come into estrus before breeding can commence. Melatonin is a sleep inducer and in deer it stimulates the estrus levels and dictates breeding time. The more light there is, the less melatonin is produced and this, in turn, causes the does to come into estrus."[/font]
[font=arial][/font] 
[font=arial][/font] 
[font=arial]though it does site four factors[/font]
[font=arial][/font] 
[*][font=arial]Length of the Day[/font]
[*][font=arial]Moon Phases[/font]
[*][font=arial]Weather[/font]
[*][font=arial]Herd Condition.[/font]
[font=arial][/font] 
[font=arial][/font] 
[font=arial]this is on deerfarmers.com....not sure the credentials behind it though i know if i keep looking a well known deer biologist said the same thing...it indicates that the moon phase is still misunderstood but plays a role ...i am not convinced it does except to change deer activity [/font]
[font=arial][/font] 
[font=arial]during bright night deer seem to be less active in the mourning( i have stopped hunting those days) be seem to be more active late in the afternoon,  where has overcast night seem to produce more deer in the mourning and then some activity right before dark..just my observation....[/font]

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dtrain56
 
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RE: 2009-2010 Rut

Postby dtrain56 » Wed Mar 11, 2009 2:31 pm

more bad news for the lunar phase theory......
 
 
 
In the spring of 2001 Dr. Karl Miller and several other researchers presented the results of their study on peak breeding dates at the Southeast Deer Study Group. After checking the breeding dates of approximately 2,500 whitetail does, in eleven different states in both the northern and southern United States, they found no correlation with peak breeding and the phase of the moon. This leads me to believe that the moon has very little influence on the timing of the peak of the rut each year.

 
the study suggests that peak breeding is triggered by the amount of sunlight, not moonlight. To help hunters determine when peak breeding occurs in their area I compiled the Rut Dates Chart, which gives both the breeding season length and peak breeding dates in most states where whitetails are found.

 
http://www.hunttheoutdoors.com/articles/default.php?id=146
 
is the actual article

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Goose
 
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RE: 2009-2010 Rut

Postby Goose » Wed Mar 11, 2009 3:32 pm

I agree with dtrain, I just don't buy the moon theory anymore.
Jake

Genesis 27:3 Take your bow and quiver full of arrows out into the open country, and hunt some wild game.....

NEW61375
 
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RE: 2009-2010 Rut

Postby NEW61375 » Thu Mar 12, 2009 3:16 am

I understand photoperiod and I understand the point your making however I think I am not getting my point across well.  Everyone knows photoperiod is the slow gradual change in the amount of light in a day.  The key is it is pretty slow/gradual.  For example in my area(VA) the difference in photoperiod from the month of September to October is about 70 minutes, a little more than 2 minutes per day.  The same holds true for October to November.  I feel that is key to getting the ball rolling so to speak but I also believe that conditions become optimal midway through the month of October, not because of the phase of the moon(new) necessarily but what it causes.

The deer detect changes in photoperiod and that triggers the rut?  It would seem the rut would be identical each year then, but it's not.  My point which I didn't relay very well is not so much about Moon Phase because I like you don't think the phase of the moon matters much.  I do believe the amount of light emitted by the moon matters and I'll tell you why.

A deer does not measure just sunlight, what I mean is the same gland(pineal gland) that detects the amount of sunlight detects the amount of moonlight as well, hell any light stimulus will be detected.  Bright days significantly inhibit the production of melatonin by a whitetail, and bright nights as well(studies have shown as much as a 50% decrease in melatonin production with light stimulus near the level of the moon). 

That is what brings me to my New Moon theory, not the phase of the moon but the fact that for that whole week of Oct 14 -21 there is no light at night, none.  That coupled with the fact that the days are gradually getting shorter already leads to perfect conditions for maximum melatonin output which from what I have read causes a signifcant spike in reproductive activity.

So I try not to get hung up on the "phase" but more importantly what that phase does and how that may impact the deer.  Two weeks before and after the time frame above there is a full moon, so you have bright days and bright nights, which is less than ideal in theory.  It's jmo and mainly I do it to help me decide when to schedule off, but the last two seasons have went really well so I'll stick with it.

I like that link there are some great articles there.  I think that info is pretty good too, even though I'm not sure how anyone could know the exact breeding dates of 1600 wild deer and I would also like to see the information on the 2500 other deer from 11 states.  The article states the best scientific data points to the amount of sunlight as triggering the rut when actually it is the lack of light all together that has a measurable effect on deer.  Their brains do not differentiate between sun and moon light and darkness is what equates to increased melatonin output.

Here is the moon from Oct. 11-23, 2009.  Don't forget that during much of this time the moon is out during the day and rarely even up at night, that's pretty dark.(special attention to Oct.14-21).

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Last Quarter

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New Moon

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[/align]One of the main reasons I started tracking conditions in my area and keeping notes on the moon, weather, activity is because the dates that were predicted every year never fit where I hunt.    

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Goose
 
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RE: 2009-2010 Rut

Postby Goose » Thu Mar 12, 2009 4:55 am

You seem to know more about this than I do so I will not argue it with you but, I will say that where I hunt the rut seems to take place in the same time frame year after year. The weather just has an effect on weather it is pronounced or not. I have detailed notes going back 15 years on deer activity in my area and the first week of Nov. seems to always be seeking/chasing and the second week chasing/some breeding. Around the 18th the does and bucks are locked down and paired up.
 
With your theory how much of a variance could there be year to year?
 
Why are there variances from region to region if we all have the same moon?
 
Why don't people measure fetuses and either prove the moon theory right or wrong?
Jake

Genesis 27:3 Take your bow and quiver full of arrows out into the open country, and hunt some wild game.....

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OHhunter
 
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RE: 2009-2010 Rut

Postby OHhunter » Thu Mar 12, 2009 5:24 am

Why don't people measure fetuses and either prove the moon theory right or wrong?


Goose,
Check out this link a biologist out of Georgia used fetal measurements and found that over a 13 year period the conception date only deviated only 4.6 days from a set calendar date and 11.5 days from a date set from the so called rutting moon.

http://bowsite.com/BOWSITE/features/articles/moontheory/
Brad

HUNT HARD, SHOOT STRAIGHT, CLEAN KILL APOLOGIZE TO NO ONE

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DeanoZ
 
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RE: 2009-2010 Rut

Postby DeanoZ » Thu Mar 12, 2009 5:41 am

My sense is its a combination of factors...the issue I have with the photperiod theory is that geographical areas along the same longitude can have vast differences in the timing of their ruts i.e the Northeast versus the Southeast.  If I'm not mistaken the rut in the south occurs weeks and sometimes even months later than it does up north and the amount of light in a given day remains the same in both areas.  Kind of blows away the photperiod theory no?  Is my logic flawed or am I missing something?

NEW61375
 
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RE: 2009-2010 Rut

Postby NEW61375 » Thu Mar 12, 2009 5:43 am

That article is interesting I like how they put the critics of the study info up there as well, so you could weigh all angles.

 
Given all the letters of support Murray has received on his Moon and Rut Guides, I asked Murray his thoughts on Osborn conclusions.  Murray said, "I believe every method researchers have used to "test" the moon's effect on rutting whitetails is flawed.  If the makeup of every study group is not uniform in terms of buck to doe ratio, the results will be skewed.  The main reason is the biostimuation effect mature bucks can have on nearby does.  The issue isn't limited to how many bucks, but I'm definitely suspicious of drawing conclusions of penned deer that live in close proximity to one another". 
 
Murray continued, "Regarding measuring fetuses removed from road-killed does in hopes of back-dating conception dates, the basic technique is imprecise, at best.  The main problem is erratic fetal growth, particularly toward the end of the cycle.  This is common among warm-blooded organisms, including humans".
 
The Conclusion paragraphs has some pretty good advice. 

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