buck home ranges, size and change?

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NCdeerguy
 
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buck home ranges, size and change?

Postby NCdeerguy » Thu Oct 28, 2010 6:00 am

I've read articles in magazines and books where researchers collared deer from a herd and tracked their movements over time to try to learn the size of home ranges, how bucks, does, young bucks, etc. differ in their home range sizes and how bucks may travel to other does' home ranges miles away during the rut. This was a good 15 years ago when I read this and haven't run across more info about it. How large on average will a buck's home range be, and will he relocate or overlap other bucks' home ranges during the rut? Can anyone point me to some articles on D&DH or other scientific articles lately that address this topic? Or at least feel free to chime in with your own assumptions/conclusions drawn from what you see from cameras year-to-year, etc.  Its a curious thing and I'm sure you've all experienced it....when you see some certain bucks early in the season on your cams or while hunting, then in late Nov. Dec. they "disappear" and your cam shows new bucks that you've never seen before.
thanks
Jeremy from NC
Tree hoppin' 'cross state from the mtns of Wilkes to the swamps of Halifax

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EatDeer
 
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RE: buck home ranges, size and change?

Postby EatDeer » Thu Nov 18, 2010 12:36 pm

When the rut hits, in the mid-west, a buck's the home range can expand from 1,000 acres to 5,000 acres. Not all bucks are the same and some may or may not travel as far.

Some of the book's Deer and Deer Hunting sell online are packed with the very information you seek.   
"Let a young buck go, so he can grow."

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charlie 01
 
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RE: buck home ranges, size and change?

Postby charlie 01 » Fri Nov 19, 2010 2:34 am

My Uncle in Mich. of years ago claimed some went a 5 mile circle. One time my cousin hit a buck that we tracked in snow, gun hunting which wenever did get. But that deer kept us going all day. When he would cross a road others in our party would take over. He knew where he was going. Even got by other hunters on the way. He ended up coming back to the same area where we started out with him. It was at least 5 miles. Here in Ill. I have found sheds of a deer and found that same bucks sheds 4 miles by way of the crows flight. And I'm sure he didn't travel that straight line.
 
In Mich. we had a sand road that cut through some of the property. There was a good deer trail that crossed that road. It was a good way to keep track of movement. Checked it quite regular. About once a week this single large track would cross, and always going the same way. Indicating that he seemed to be traveling in some kind of circle. For me, it is not uncommon to find matching sheds miles apart. Some deer get rid of their antlers to the point of knocking the last one off. And some travel along until it just falls off. I have theories about this, but too lengthly to get into now. 
never say never
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Woods Walker
 
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RE: buck home ranges, size and change?

Postby Woods Walker » Fri Nov 26, 2010 4:35 pm

X2 on the big circle. I've had the same experience. An old hunter I know once told me that deer are just like big rabbits, and he did a lot of rabbit hunting behind beagels as well as deer hunt.

I believe he's right.
Hunt Hard,

Kill Swiftly,

Waste Nothing,

Offer No Apologies.....

>>>--------------------------------->
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charlie 01
 
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RE: buck home ranges, size and change?

Postby charlie 01 » Tue Dec 28, 2010 2:02 am

Yes he is right WoodsWalker. I used to hunt rabbits with my uncle and his dogs. Where ever you would jump a rabbit, and the dogs got on it, all you would have to do is wait in that area. You could hear the dogs comming your way, and soon the rabbit would come by. It was fun and good hunting. The rabbit was always ahead of the dogs and aforded a cleaner shot. Snowshoe rabbits were the most fun. That rabbit would never hole up. He would take the dog out of hearing. We would just wait and pretty soon you would hear the dog comming back and getting louder as it came. Shooting snowshoes with snow on the ground was not an easy thing. Now you see him, now you don't.
 
As for deer, when I think about deer I and others have shot and had to track that either lived or died, many managed to get back near to the area where it all started. 
never say never
patience is the companion of wisdom

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Jslotter
 
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RE: buck home ranges, size and change?

Postby Jslotter » Tue Dec 28, 2010 1:46 pm

I been studying the deer in my area and trying to figure out their home range and how the terrain affects their behavior. This is what I gathered this year form watching the deer in my area. In the summer time, the bucks will hide out on the property I live on and get into bachelor groups. They would hit the alfalfa and clover fields nearby. Their home range is pretty tight and the thrive on about 10 acres of land for awhile. Around late August, they go more nocturnal and the bachelor groups break up. Going further into September and October, the mature bucks have moved into the neighbor's land about a quarter of a mile away where there is higher doe population, and begin their pre-rut phase. Going into late October into November, the bucks are running searching for does as the full rut kicks into action. The bucks I have been watching during the summer have "disappeared" it seems and the neighbors have not seen any of the mature bucks since mid-October. But they are still around. On opening day of rifle Season last month, I was hunting a property about a mile away. One of the mature bucks I was watching most of the year was taken by a young hunter that morning on that same property. I also saw a large buck walking across the field near my place as I was going down town to register mine. I have not seen that buck ever. Didn't know where he came from. And now the deer are in their winter herds, living close to my neighbor's cut corn fields about a mile away.
The buck I shot this year during gun season was a decent 6 point. I had shot almost in the same spot I seen him in October. He lived in a 20 acre lot during the rut and didn't stray far away. I figured since the doe population was good in that area, he stayed for the rut and didn't need to travel to find good breeding grounds. In 2007 I shot another 6 point opening morning of rifle season. I seen him the summer before in the same area when I was cruising thru on a 4-wheeler. I am not an expert about deer behavior, but from my own studying and observations, it seems that mature bucks expanded their home range in accordance with the season. The smaller bucks will stick tight to a smaller area year round and not travel far.
I only hunt on days that end in ' Y '.

msbadger
 
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RE: buck home ranges, size and change?

Postby msbadger » Wed Dec 29, 2010 3:48 pm

Home range...well I've found in our area it would have to be what ever they can walk eat and sleep in on a three day rotation....for when I'm taking pics during the spring/summer....that is the average time it takes for them to return to the area....Now the UPS guy has seen the same buck on our property as far as 2 miles away...cutting across the same fields back and forth head to and from our lands....Then I think there are the ones that just hang in the swamps we have in these hills...for hill country there are many big swamp areas for these deer to live in

msbadger
 
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RE: buck home ranges, size and change?

Postby msbadger » Wed Dec 29, 2010 3:51 pm

By the way if you really want to know whats going on in your area as far as animals and movement...make friends with the delivery guys....postal...propane...the cable and phone repairmen...and the UPS guy...even swain food products if you have them[;)]

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hd_dude63
 
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Re: buck home ranges, size and change?

Postby hd_dude63 » Sun Jan 27, 2013 2:24 pm

Another factor to consider is the doe to buck ratio during the rut.If you have a high doe population the bucks don't need to travel as far in their search for breeding.


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