What can rubs tell us?Old/new.

Discuss the science of figuring out our prey through good detective work.
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kwaldeier
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What can rubs tell us?Old/new.

Unread postby kwaldeier » Wed Mar 16, 2011 1:41 pm

I have been walking around alot and finding my share of rubs,all of them old now.I was just curious if you could find beds if you have rubs? Maybe a buck will make a rub once he get out of his bed? I would doubt he would travel a mile just for a rub line. I have been finding rubs in 2s and 3s and one with 5! Would/should there be a bed close to a rub line/ I have looked with no success :(


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Re: What can rubs tell us?Old/new.

Unread postby Swampthing » Wed Mar 16, 2011 3:30 pm

I,ve found some rub lines close to beds .But most have been further away from the actual bed itself.Mainly I think the reason for this is lack of suitable trees for rubbing.Most of the beds I,m finding are in a small highspot in redbrush or cattails.And I,ll find a rubline and travelpath further away ounce the buck gets to the mainland (dryground) where there are more trees.Lots of times in the exact spot where the buck lays you will find 1 single rub right in the bed.

Here are the start of a rubline proably 300 yards from bed
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Here is a picture from the bucks bed looking back onto the highground where the rubline was.You can see his trail through the cattails .
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Here is a picture of the bucks actual bed ,with a rub right in the bed
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Here is a picture of the little clump of trees surrounded by cattails where the bucks bed is .This litlle clump is only 15 feet by 15 feet.
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Re: What can rubs tell us?Old/new.

Unread postby Singing Bridge » Thu Mar 17, 2011 3:23 am

kwaldeier wrote:I have been walking around alot and finding my share of rubs,all of them old now.I was just curious if you could find beds if you have rubs? Maybe a buck will make a rub once he get out of his bed? I would doubt he would travel a mile just for a rub line. I have been finding rubs in 2s and 3s and one with 5! Would/should there be a bed close to a rub line/ I have looked with no success :(


When you find a rubline, you have identified at least part of a buck (or bucks) travel route at some point during the year. Could the rubline be connecting a bedding area with a destination (food, does, water, etc.) ? Scan your memory bank and examine your aerial photo's and topo maps to see if the line could be leading toward or away from a potential bedding area and go check it out.

I do find a few rubs/rubline near bedding areas, but also the previously mentioned destination areas as well as others. Boot leather and hard scouting should help find these bedding areas.

Swampthing- great pics and example of rubs relating to bedding. 8-)
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Re: What can rubs tell us?Old/new.

Unread postby dan » Thu Mar 17, 2011 4:15 am

Sometimes bucks lay rublines from there bedding area that can be followed right to the bed. However, its been my experiance that younger bucks generally do this and the older target bucks generally are a bit more secretive.
Rublines and clumps don't really have to have anything to do with staging. Often a rubline might be marking where a certain doe passes through, or marking a territory line where a rival buck intersects. Some are done in the middle of the night a mile or more from the bed.
When I think back to the biggest and oldest bucks I ever shot in there bedding areas. Most had very few rubs around there bedding / staging area. However, I have seen two year old bucks have rublines you could see for a mile lead right to there beds.
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Re: What can rubs tell us?Old/new.

Unread postby Wrinkleneck » Thu Mar 17, 2011 4:23 am

Great topic here. I can't wait for the day of scouting with Dan to see and learn more about buck beds.
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Re: What can rubs tell us?Old/new.

Unread postby dreaming bucks » Thu Mar 17, 2011 5:31 am

But how do you guys know if that certain buck that made those rubs is still alive ? I'm talking about finding rubs this time of year... That buck rub that I find here in the next couple weeks could have been made last October and the buck could have been shot in November... So if we are looking into rubs this much, it could be for nothing, right ? Or am I missing something here ?
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Re: What can rubs tell us?Old/new.

Unread postby Wrinkleneck » Thu Mar 17, 2011 5:44 am

dreaming bucks wrote:But how do you guys know if that certain buck that made those rubs is still alive ? I'm talking about finding rubs this time of year... That buck rub that I find here in the next couple weeks could have been made last October and the buck could have been shot in November... So if we are looking into rubs this much, it could be for nothing, right ? Or am I missing something here ?


I'm thinking that if the rubs line leads to an area that once held a mature buck, even if he is already dead that you will find that another buck will take over that bedding area. Just my .02
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Re: What can rubs tell us?Old/new.

Unread postby dan » Thu Mar 17, 2011 6:46 am

Wrinkleneck wrote:
dreaming bucks wrote:But how do you guys know if that certain buck that made those rubs is still alive ? I'm talking about finding rubs this time of year... That buck rub that I find here in the next couple weeks could have been made last October and the buck could have been shot in November... So if we are looking into rubs this much, it could be for nothing, right ? Or am I missing something here ?


I'm thinking that if the rubs line leads to an area that once held a mature buck, even if he is already dead that you will find that another buck will take over that bedding area. Just my .02

Wrinkle is correct... I would add that anyplace you find concentrations of rubs, there will usually be other bucks using the area in the same manner as the target buck.
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Re: What can rubs tell us?Old/new.

Unread postby DEERSLAYER » Thu Mar 17, 2011 8:10 am

Singing Bridge wrote:...Boot leather and hard scouting should help find these bedding areas...


I am somewhat familiar with kwaldeier's situation and while he is still learning to hunt mature bucks (actually all of us are always learning), right now he is at that point of "Boot leather and hard scouting". I have also recommended that he take a map with him and mark all of this information on it while he is scouting. Like most people finding time to scout can be tough, but he has some good farmland property. Once he cover's his property with a fine tooth comb I believe with some help from beast members he can kill a 5 1/2 - 6 1/2 year old beast on his property. Maybe he will post some maps and aerials along with what he has found so far as well as the details of the situation. Or if he wants I will do it for him. I think you all will agree that he has a very good chance of killing some mature bucks.
Last edited by DEERSLAYER on Thu Mar 17, 2011 9:02 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: What can rubs tell us?Old/new.

Unread postby Spysar » Thu Mar 17, 2011 8:42 am

One thing I have to add, is that rubs are used by other bucks than just the maker of the original rub. Some rubs are a one time use. Some rubs are used multiple times, by multiple bucks. You will also find perenial rub spots, where rubs will crop up there year after year. Just like prime bed spots that are used because they are the best place to be, there will be prime rub spots.

It all depends on what time of year it is, and what phase the buck is going through at that time. The first rubs are to get the velvet off. After that, they just rub to strengthen their necks, which will prepare them for battles. As breeding approaches, bucks take out their sexual frustrations on trees. They will mark their territories with rubs. These rubs are visual, and they are also scented. A buck can see them and know there's another buck, then smell them and then they know exactly which bucks scent is on the rub. A small buck will be able to tell by scent if a dominant buck is in the area.

I'd say bucks rub the least during actual breeding time, or doe tending time. After breeding they will continue to rub. Bucks may rub as long as they have hard antler, but it does taper off in mid winter.
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Re: What can rubs tell us?Old/new.

Unread postby kwaldeier » Thu Mar 17, 2011 9:41 am

here is what i found just the other day alone...all of them in thick pines,most of them on top of a hill.
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Re: What can rubs tell us?Old/new.

Unread postby Stuart » Thu Mar 17, 2011 11:01 am

Interesting stuff and sometimes we pass these up with no reading what is left behind for us...
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Re: What can rubs tell us?Old/new.

Unread postby Singing Bridge » Thu Mar 17, 2011 2:14 pm

kwaldeier, I sent you a pm as you requested. 8-)

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Re: What can rubs tell us?Old/new.

Unread postby Dewey » Thu Mar 17, 2011 6:57 pm

dan wrote:Sometimes bucks lay rublines from there bedding area that can be followed right to the bed. However, its been my experiance that younger bucks generally do this and the older target bucks generally are a bit more secretive.

This is exactly what I have seen as well. I can't think of a mature buck bed I have found that had a rub right near or in the bedding area. If I find large rubs they are normally near a staging area close to a food source or a travel area between the food source and the bedding area but usually taper off before the buck gets to his bed.
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Re: What can rubs tell us?Old/new.

Unread postby DEERSLAYER » Thu Mar 17, 2011 8:38 pm

In another thread people mentioned how it would be nice to have something more "technical" to talk about instead of just chit chat. Well, here are the properties kwaldeier has as well as a little background on them. So have at it!




Here is an overview of property #1. (He is the only person that bow hunts both of these properties.)

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This B&W exposes some nice features. The 205 acres is only meant to represent what is in the green. Not the total acreage available to hunt.

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This one he just sent me. I'm not sure how far North or South the blue and red lines go.

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Notice how the elevation changes are only in four foot intervals. They haven't hunted most of the west half. He and his dad are the only ones that hunt this piece and his dad only gun hunts. There is a neighbor that bow hunts on the SW corner (?) of their property and 4-5 gun hunters on that property also.

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And a standard topo for some more clarity.

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This is from one of his recent scouting trips. The white lines are runways. Unfortunately he is concerned about hunting that east side where the two “I” markers are because of a crazy neighbor. There is also a fence along the east line with a hole in it (just below the North “I”).

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Overview of Property #2 which is “landlocked”. This property is about five miles from the other property and is hunted by about 8-9 gun hunters There are cows in the pasture (they can go in woods) from May to October and his dad occasionally spooks deer when he goes in the woods to find his cows (other than normal farm operations which shouldn't be an issue).

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A B&W to help make some things pop out.

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Again these are four foot intervals. Not something I'm used to seeing.

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I think the neighbors have two stands on the field edge along the south side and one on the west side.

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And of course a standard topo.

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This is from a more recent scouting trip.

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He has some mature bucks moving during good daylight. Check out this stud! It looks like he could be doing a lip curl. This buck is from property #1 which is where the oldest bucks he has pics of have come from. He only put his camera in one spot on this property.

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I believe this buck is from property #2 and is a good representative of that property. I don't know if he had more than one camera location on this property.

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