When do Bucks move in Fall?

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szwampdonkey
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Re: When do Bucks move in Fall?

Unread postby szwampdonkey » Tue Jul 20, 2021 12:17 am

For me in SE WI the shift from Bachelor Groups and summer range to them being more solitary and in their fall range happens in early to mid Sept.

If i don’t get on the Bucks ive watched in bean fields all summer the first two weeks or so of the season they’re usually gone until the rut.


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Re: When do Bucks move in Fall?

Unread postby MichiganMike » Tue Jul 20, 2021 4:50 am

I hang mine in hardwoods near swamp transitions. So Ill see bucks checking things out around mid sept.
I dont hunt or have access to farm areas, but I would think you would see buck bachelor groups in those areas all summer.
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Re: When do Bucks move in Fall?

Unread postby tim » Tue Jul 20, 2021 6:45 pm

phade wrote:Likewise, I see multiple shifts IMO. I wish there was more research done on this - lots of scholarly articles on shifts but I don't think any of them reflect what I observe/or actually witness.

Between cameras and glassing, I have consistently seen multiple shifts. One right at velvet peel, one at the end of September, rut madness, and then late season. Then another at June time.

I have history with a very nice 140-150" 8, which is large for our area that demonstrated an absolutely clock-work-like shift. I have four years of this buck on cam, thousands of images and even videos (by an actual camera while glassing). This buck would appear in February and be present through summer, and disappear as if he has a watch on his front leg. The last date of having eyeballs or photos of the deer for all four of those years....9/29, 9/30, 9/30, 9/30. There were variations in crop rotation, adjacent pressure, farming practices, etc. In none of those years did that buck show up in hunting season in daylight, and only once did he show up at night, peak rut, paired up with another large buck chasing a doe. Outside of that, that buck was a ghost in season, only to return in February two months after season close. Face value one might think it's pressure related, but there was no constant there to cause that buck to be THAT exact, even me and my hunting partner. One year we had a gap of stepping foot on that property for a long time before and after that shift on 9/30.

mature bucks are so simple and complex at the same time.

I have some bucks now going on 3 years worth of patterns if the do the same this year, now that I use more cams and will flood an area with them it gives me a better idea what some of these bucks do as opposed to one pic one spot. I’m pretty sure we don’t capture the movement everytime they are in an area. There is one specific area on my farm every year I just turn the cam and face it the opposite way because they start avoiding that camera and the camera goes from dead to alive. Most of my spots don’t seem to be that way but this one sets up perfect on a logging road they can turn miss the camera with a slight adjustment and I would think they were never in the area
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Southern Man
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Re: When do Bucks move in Fall?

Unread postby Southern Man » Wed Jul 21, 2021 12:09 am

dan wrote:its spot dependant... If bucks are not on your cameras early, go to where bucks are early


I agree.

Bucks move all the time. Just not in the same spots. I've had it both ways. There was a farm I hunted here that had good bucks all summer long. Then about early - mid October they vanished. But in late January / early February, they came back. A couple of those I tried and tried to find but they had left. where to I don't know but they came back in late winter.

On the other end, I've had spots where good bucks would show up in early - mid October that I hadn't seen all summer. It would build through November but the best time for me down here was early to mid December. I've seen more good bucks in daylight during that time than any other. The big boys were out looking for the girls. Very few people in the woods here during that time and the bucks are everywhere. Then come January and things start to settle down.

The ladies tho, bedded in the same spots, ate the same foods year after year. When I hunt areas I'm not familiar with, I'll tend to follow the does, depending on the time of year. Learn what they do, where they go, what they like, and where they bed. The big boys learn that pretty quick and they'll show up.
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Re: When do Bucks move in Fall?

Unread postby phade » Wed Jul 21, 2021 12:24 am

tim wrote:
phade wrote:Likewise, I see multiple shifts IMO. I wish there was more research done on this - lots of scholarly articles on shifts but I don't think any of them reflect what I observe/or actually witness.

Between cameras and glassing, I have consistently seen multiple shifts. One right at velvet peel, one at the end of September, rut madness, and then late season. Then another at June time.

I have history with a very nice 140-150" 8, which is large for our area that demonstrated an absolutely clock-work-like shift. I have four years of this buck on cam, thousands of images and even videos (by an actual camera while glassing). This buck would appear in February and be present through summer, and disappear as if he has a watch on his front leg. The last date of having eyeballs or photos of the deer for all four of those years....9/29, 9/30, 9/30, 9/30. There were variations in crop rotation, adjacent pressure, farming practices, etc. In none of those years did that buck show up in hunting season in daylight, and only once did he show up at night, peak rut, paired up with another large buck chasing a doe. Outside of that, that buck was a ghost in season, only to return in February two months after season close. Face value one might think it's pressure related, but there was no constant there to cause that buck to be THAT exact, even me and my hunting partner. One year we had a gap of stepping foot on that property for a long time before and after that shift on 9/30.

mature bucks are so simple and complex at the same time.

I have some bucks now going on 3 years worth of patterns if the do the same this year, now that I use more cams and will flood an area with them it gives me a better idea what some of these bucks do as opposed to one pic one spot. I’m pretty sure we don’t capture the movement everytime they are in an area. There is one specific area on my farm every year I just turn the cam and face it the opposite way because they start avoiding that camera and the camera goes from dead to alive. Most of my spots don’t seem to be that way but this one sets up perfect on a logging road they can turn miss the camera with a slight adjustment and I would think they were never in the area


I have pics of that buck from 15 cams maybe across the property? Like clockwork, gone on the aforementioned days. While not foolproof, at a certain point, you gain confidence in a deer's actions based on enough time samples and elimination of factors that may cause it that can be controlled or accounted for. We also glass from a good vantage point on the destination food source there. I'm sure bucks give the slip more than we give them credit for. That said, I'm pretty confident this deer was a ghost in season based on his shifts across four years. I'm sure the exception to the rule but fascinating nonetheless.
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Re: When do Bucks move in Fall?

Unread postby tim » Thu Jul 22, 2021 2:46 am

phade wrote:
tim wrote:
phade wrote:Likewise, I see multiple shifts IMO. I wish there was more research done on this - lots of scholarly articles on shifts but I don't think any of them reflect what I observe/or actually witness.

Between cameras and glassing, I have consistently seen multiple shifts. One right at velvet peel, one at the end of September, rut madness, and then late season. Then another at June time.

I have history with a very nice 140-150" 8, which is large for our area that demonstrated an absolutely clock-work-like shift. I have four years of this buck on cam, thousands of images and even videos (by an actual camera while glassing). This buck would appear in February and be present through summer, and disappear as if he has a watch on his front leg. The last date of having eyeballs or photos of the deer for all four of those years....9/29, 9/30, 9/30, 9/30. There were variations in crop rotation, adjacent pressure, farming practices, etc. In none of those years did that buck show up in hunting season in daylight, and only once did he show up at night, peak rut, paired up with another large buck chasing a doe. Outside of that, that buck was a ghost in season, only to return in February two months after season close. Face value one might think it's pressure related, but there was no constant there to cause that buck to be THAT exact, even me and my hunting partner. One year we had a gap of stepping foot on that property for a long time before and after that shift on 9/30.

mature bucks are so simple and complex at the same time.

I have some bucks now going on 3 years worth of patterns if the do the same this year, now that I use more cams and will flood an area with them it gives me a better idea what some of these bucks do as opposed to one pic one spot. I’m pretty sure we don’t capture the movement everytime they are in an area. There is one specific area on my farm every year I just turn the cam and face it the opposite way because they start avoiding that camera and the camera goes from dead to alive. Most of my spots don’t seem to be that way but this one sets up perfect on a logging road they can turn miss the camera with a slight adjustment and I would think they were never in the area


I have pics of that buck from 15 cams maybe across the property? Like clockwork, gone on the aforementioned days. While not foolproof, at a certain point, you gain confidence in a deer's actions based on enough time samples and elimination of factors that may cause it that can be controlled or accounted for. We also glass from a good vantage point on the destination food source there. I'm sure bucks give the slip more than we give them credit for. That said, I'm pretty confident this deer was a ghost in season based on his shifts across four years. I'm sure the exception to the rule but fascinating nonetheless.

Absolute fun watching these deer grow for a few years and learning their traits and quirks attempting to kill them when it’s time! I already know a couple specific dates for specific bucks where I will be hunting if weather cooperates and my tag isn’t filled lol…good luck this fall
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Re: When do Bucks move in Fall?

Unread postby G-Patt » Thu Jul 22, 2021 3:31 am

I mostly see bucks moving around October 22nd through Nov 28th in Southern Ohio.
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Re: When do Bucks move in Fall?

Unread postby Hunter271995 » Thu Jul 22, 2021 2:32 pm

Rather than dates, I've noticed that it is more changes of the seasons correlate with changes in range and movement. First is losing the velvet (early september), second in agricultural areas is when beans change from green to yellow (mid to late september pending area), third is the loss of foliage and dying of annual understory plants (this seems especially true in more hilly terrain, Mid to late October), and the next big change is in late season when bucks and all deer begin to bed closer to food sources (December-January). Snow and consistent cold weather really shift the bedding to late season. Going back to Rut/November, pending the buck they hang in their home range or they seem to make moves into areas with more does. Movement and bedding seems more breeding/safety based since hunting pressure is usually its highest.
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