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Author Topic: Deer Patterns Changing  (Read 1017 times)

Offline LOlson45

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Deer Patterns Changing
« on: September 20, 2020, 09:23:00 PM »
I live in Northeastern WA. This summer I had many many different bucks showing up on my camera. Just as many bucks as does....maybe even more bucks than does. Middle of august hit and haven’t had a single buck on camera and have had very minimal does. My camera is next to a creek so I understand that as it cools off they will move from the water sources. Do I need to move up the hill into the thicker woods a little more to find these bucks again? Do I need to just be patient and wait until November and start baiting? Or do I need to be setting up in a different location where these bucks may be? The fact that I am not seeing many does makes me a tad nervous. I know that there is a lot of nice bucks in the area so I do not want to abandon the area completely.
« Last Edit: September 20, 2020, 09:28:40 PM by LOlson45 »

Offline OutHouse

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Re: Deer Patterns Changing
« Reply #1 on: September 21, 2020, 04:46:04 PM »
If I were you I would get back out there boots on the ground and see what changed. The type of forage that they were eating could be gone now and they have moved on to something else. I noticed the same issue you have with mule deer in my area. During the summer there are these bushy type plants with small leaves that they love to eat. When those dry up toward the end of summer, most of the mule bucks leave. I have also been told when this happens to get out there and see if you see a kill sight from a predator. That could easily drive out a group of otherwise complacent deer. Good luck!

Offline LOlson45

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Re: Deer Patterns Changing
« Reply #2 on: September 21, 2020, 07:49:17 PM »
Do you guys think if I continue to bait leading up to the rut, will the does move back in and the bucks follow? I know that they are in the area. Just need them in front of my stand.

Online Jonathan_S

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Re: Deer Patterns Changing
« Reply #3 on: September 21, 2020, 08:00:48 PM »
Mature bucks will visit bait sites but all deer even does will go largely nocturnal on a long term bait. Most daylight activity occurs in the few days after a bait is started. Problem I've ran into is estrus does staying in thick brush during their breeding time and not hitting baits. YMMV.
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Offline Fatherof5

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Re: Deer Patterns Changing
« Reply #4 on: September 21, 2020, 08:06:18 PM »
In my opinion, I wouldn’t push too deep into the thick stuff as you mentioned earlier. You risk the chance of bumping the bucks from their bedding area. I would get out there and try to do some low impact scouting to see what their new interest is. I’ve always gone by the  saying that you want to hunt the travel routes, not the bucks destination.  :twocents:

Offline fishnfur

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Re: Deer Patterns Changing
« Reply #5 on: September 22, 2020, 09:45:11 PM »
 :yeah:

I'm not a WT hunter, but after reading a few hundred threads over the years, I think fatherof5 is on track.  Seems like I've heard discussions of how they change feeding and bedding areas as summer turns to fall.  You've got to do some scouting to figure out where they moved to.  If there is agriculture(food) in the immediate area, I'd look there first.    :twocents:  (only one cent worth).  Good luck!
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Offline Scuffy

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Re: Deer Patterns Changing
« Reply #6 on: September 23, 2020, 09:01:58 PM »
I’ve hunted the same property in NE WA all my life and have really paid attention to deer patterns the last 20 years. I’ve noticed the same thing. The deer will be on the property thick through the summer months until about end of August, then disappear to higher elevations until November. But the same deer I see during the summer always come back sometime in November. Sometimes it’s before the end of late season and sometimes just after late season ends, but they always make their way back.

Offline huntnnw

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Re: Deer Patterns Changing
« Reply #7 on: September 23, 2020, 10:01:36 PM »
impossible to give an accurate answer. Every area and every single buck in any given area is different. Ive hunted bucks that stay 365 days in the same area, I have hunted bucks that move tremendous amount and everything in between.

Its amazing how much a whitetail can be a homebody. An example just this year is I was bouncing cams around this summer trying to pin down a home range of a buck. I had him on cam at 1 spot quite abit I moved a cam straight west 300 yards and never captured a single pic of him, but did have another buck show there that never showed at the other cam. It would take either one of these bucks minutes to show up at either cam.   I have more stories like this than I could remember. I have moved cams 100-300 yards and it was a night and day difference in target buck sightings.
« Last Edit: September 23, 2020, 10:39:44 PM by huntnnw »

Offline fishnfur

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Re: Deer Patterns Changing
« Reply #8 on: September 24, 2020, 09:42:58 AM »
Weird and interesting.  Sounds like territorialism, which we know happens in the deer world during the rut, but you would imagine these two bucks would be in the same bachelor group all summer.  Perhaps the two buck's personalities don't mesh well and they just stay separate by choice. Their mutual territorial line is between the two camera points. I don't think I've ever heard anything like this , but sure as hell, when one of my neighbors down here is being an ass, I typically try to minimize encounters with the jerk.
“When I die, I want to die like my grandfather who died peacefully in his sleep. Not screaming like all the passengers in his car.”  - Will Rogers

Online Jonathan_S

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Re: Deer Patterns Changing
« Reply #9 on: September 24, 2020, 10:36:29 AM »
I'm no @huntnnw but I don't see as much bachelor herding in whitetails as mule deer. Particularly in mature deer. I interpreted his earlier post to show us how tight their home ranges can actually be.
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Offline buckfvr

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Re: Deer Patterns Changing
« Reply #10 on: September 24, 2020, 11:03:13 AM »
Mature bucks will visit bait sites but all deer even does will go largely nocturnal on a long term bait. Most daylight activity occurs in the few days after a bait is started. Problem I've ran into is estrus does staying in thick brush during their breeding time and not hitting baits. YMMV.

All depends on how often and how severe they are disturbed.  The deer have a virtual smorgasbord this time of year so I cant imagine why anyone would bait other than they dont know what else to do.

Hint #1, dont sit over a bait pile, determine from where they come most of the time and hunt the wind.

Online Jonathan_S

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Re: Deer Patterns Changing
« Reply #11 on: September 24, 2020, 11:12:51 AM »
Agreed. Older bucks take their sweet time approaching a site. Only time I have had them charge in is with gland scents and rattling but that's not every time either.
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Offline buckfvr

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Re: Deer Patterns Changing
« Reply #12 on: September 24, 2020, 11:41:24 AM »
If you follow QDMA page you will see that yes deer move more at night but  still move plenty during the day.  If you do not see bucks at your stand in daylight, there is a reason for it, like they know youre there, or you are not in a secure enough area for them.  Get under the canopy.

Low impact in and out of stand sight is imperative.  Being busted in or out will ruin your chances during daylight hours. Young bucks still running with the does will show with the does until the rut nears.  Mature bucks will most likely scent check from a distance down wind to see if any of the ladies are ripe.  Post rut is the best time to sit bait for the better bucks as they focus on food.

Stand sight location is initially the most important thing you will do.  Cams in november december tell you where to hunt.  Cams in the summer let you inventory deer herd but by no means is an indicator of what you will hunt at that location during the rut.  In the rut, you will be hunting traveling bucks, and if you do it right, they are the easier ones to kill.  Any resident bucks of your stand sight will know when youre there and how you come in and go out and will be nocturnal.

There is even way more to it than this, but maybe this will help.

Offline fishnfur

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Re: Deer Patterns Changing
« Reply #13 on: September 24, 2020, 12:04:38 PM »
That's a mouthful.  Great explanation!
“When I die, I want to die like my grandfather who died peacefully in his sleep. Not screaming like all the passengers in his car.”  - Will Rogers

Offline Seabass

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Re: Deer Patterns Changing
« Reply #14 on: September 24, 2020, 01:28:44 PM »
impossible to give an accurate answer. Every area and every single buck in any given area is different. Ive hunted bucks that stay 365 days in the same area, I have hunted bucks that move tremendous amount and everything in between.

Its amazing how much a whitetail can be a homebody. An example just this year is I was bouncing cams around this summer trying to pin down a home range of a buck. I had him on cam at 1 spot quite abit I moved a cam straight west 300 yards and never captured a single pic of him, but did have another buck show there that never showed at the other cam. It would take either one of these bucks minutes to show up at either cam.   I have more stories like this than I could remember. I have moved cams 100-300 yards and it was a night and day difference in target buck sightings.

I have experienced this a LOT....both instances...sever roamer's and hermit's. I have had very little luck in killing the roamer's.

 


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