Archers hunting the rut in Pennsylvania
Two weeks ago, deer were moving at a fairly steady rate in the woods I was hunting. Sighting smaller bucks chasing does, and even each other, was not uncommon as they provided moments of almost guaranteed entertainment during both morning and evening sits.
Although the instances of seeing those smaller guys has dropped somewhat over the past two weeks, they still pass me by frequently enough to make certain I’m keeping a steady eye and full attention fixed throughout my viewing area when I’m tree bound.
What I have yet to see while hunting this fall is a bigger buck, one of those mature males whose rack and body size makes one sit up at full awareness with total concentration.
During one evening hunt I did see a good buck, one which I couldn’t even count his points or ascertain his spread range, as he disappeared almost as quickly as he came into my view. I’d say he is in the 14- or 15-inch breadth, and had anywhere from six to eight yellowish points that reached well above his ears. He is certainly a nice buck, but most years, during this particular period of deer-breeding activity, I see at least one or two — and often more — of those big bruisers that make the one I just described look small in comparison.
There were a few recent days of cold mornings with heavy frost, and cooler afternoons, time periods when I thought I might catch sight of a couple of big guys, yet it did not happen.
Now it has turned warmer, enough to make me think I’m hunting big gobblers on a nice, sunny spring day.
It’s often said by so-called experts that warm periods during the rut make breeding action a nighttime activity, but I’m one who believes that whenever a doe becomes ready, it can happen at any hour, and a buck will be there. Still, without seeing a top class big fellow up to now, those experts may have a point.
Colder weather is here once again, and I believe that sooner, or even a bit later, I’ll catch sight of a huge rack moving through woods or fields. Of course, if that doesn’t happen, I’m quite happy with what I am seeing.