The Star Beacon; Ashtabula, Ohio


October 29, 2012

Outdoors Insider, with Dale Sunderlin: Feelin’ in a rut? I am!

Well, folks, I pretty well messed up. With the weather being the way it has been, warm, cold, wet, dry, typical Northeast Ohio weather, I completely forgot about the rut. As a bow hunter I should be taken out back and given 50 lashes with a peep sight rubber.

Since I messed up so bad I’m going to cut through the chase skip the hoopla about why the rut happens, moon phases, the autumnal equinox and when it happens, how it plays a role in it, estrous, testosterone, etc., etc., etc., and get right to the dates that are important.

Here are the dates:

The Seeking phase should begin about Oct. 26-29. Without going into too much detail, this is the phase where the bucks are out looking but the doe’s are not receptive yet.

Next comes the Chasing stage. This phase should happen somewhere be Oct. 30 and last until about Nov. 7.  To many hunters this is prime time. This is the phase where bucks are running helter skelter chasing every doe they can scent or see. They have a total disregard for their own safety; they have only one thing on their mind, finding a female.   

The last major phase is the breeding phase. Breeding should take place from November 8th and run till the 16th or so. During this phase you’re no going to see a lot of movement. Basically the doe’s will be moving in their normal patterns between bedding and feeding areas. The big difference will be there may be a nice buck right behind her. During this period don’t be in a hurry to fill and early season bow tag. Take a chance, hold off and see if there’s a buck trailing her. You may get lucky and bag a trophy.

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