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Whitetail rut

Discussion in 'Hunting' started by jimmyraythomason, Sep 25, 2009.

  1. jimmyraythomason

    jimmyraythomason Well-Known Member

    - Here in central Alabama,the whitetail deer go through a minor rutting phase in late December but the full blown,all out rut doesn't come around until the last week in January. We really don't have a "late season" or after rut hunting period as our season closes January 31st. What time do the deer rut in your area? I just saw a tiny spotted fawn this morning(Friday 9/25) reminding me of the late breeding time and prompting this thread.
  2. Grumulkin

    Grumulkin Well-Known Member

    In Ohio, supposedly in October/November and bow season opens on 9/26!
  3. jim in Anchorage

    jim in Anchorage Well-Known Member

    When I lived in NY rut started in late Oct. which worked out good because bow lasted to mid Nov. I would never shoot a doe-leave them alone for bait and sooner or later a wild, out of his mind buck would show.
  4. jimmyraythomason

    jimmyraythomason Well-Known Member

    We have an over abundance of does. On our lease where we had a wildlife biologist from Auburn University do a study,it was determined that we had a 7:2 doe to buck ratio. We have a 3 buck limit (statewide)with at least one having four points on one side and a doe per day for the length of the season.
  5. jim in Anchorage

    jim in Anchorage Well-Known Member

    And there's still to many? must be hard hunting. Can you still use dogs? I remember that was the case years ago.
  6. rcmodel

    rcmodel Member in memoriam

    A rut in late December seems a little odd.

    The gestation period for a whitetail deer is 200-205 days. Most fawns are born in late May or early June when they can get a good growth on them & the doe recover before the next winter hard spell.

    If they breed in late December, they are going to be dropping fawns during the most stressful part of the hot summer and then go into winter still pretty young & stressed.

    If there is a late December rut it would be barren does that didn't breed during the early cold snap in October.

  7. jimmyraythomason

    jimmyraythomason Well-Known Member

    Not hard hunting just most folks are against shooting does for whatever reason. For many years does were protected except during bow season. rcmodel, for years I thought deer rutted at the same nation wide as here. I was suprised to learn that our rut is pretty much isolated and at odds with most of the rest of the country. You can check with The Alabama Fish and Wildlife Service or<http://www.alabamahuntingandfishingtrail.com/white-tailed-deer-management.php>
  8. rcmodel

    rcmodel Member in memoriam

    No, I believe you.

    I doubt your winters are anything at all like our winters here in Kansas!

    I doubt it gets down below zero with two foot of blowing snow on the ground in Bama very often!

  9. Lonestar.45

    Lonestar.45 Well-Known Member

    Here in central Texas, the peak of the rut seems to be about the 2nd or 3rd week of November. One lease in San Saba I was on, the rut was almost always hottest between Nov 15 - 20 most years.
    In south Texas, it's up around Christmas or after.
  10. jimmyraythomason

    jimmyraythomason Well-Known Member

    You're right rcmodel. The coldest I can remember was 5 degrees below zero and only one 2 week period where it never got over 12 degrees. The most snowfall I've ever seen here was in 1993 when we had a March snowstorm that dropped 18 inches of misery on us. Over the last 20 years or so it rarely dips into single digits and teens are almost as rare.
  11. jbkebert

    jbkebert Well-Known Member

    While my son and I were hunting last Sunday we jumped a spotted fawn. On the way to the stand we spoked it laying in the tall grass on the edge of a food plot. I noticed last year that the rut seemed a little late. We also had a long indian summer last year. This year has been very cool overall here in Kansas. Noticing deer putting on more bulk a little early this year. Most of the guys I hunt around think that Halloween will be the magic time this year. On average I would say it happens around the 2nd week of November on average.
  12. matrem

    matrem Well-Known Member

    "rut"is a lonnnngg- drawn out process. In Ohio it starts in very early September ( as soon as the bucks lose their velvet, and continues untill there are no more females "that want to play".
    Seeking & chasing seem to be what most folks equate to "rutting" and the vast majority of that happens here from Halloween to mid November. Tending ( not the best hunting situation) can run untill the "second rut" comes.
  13. JimKirk

    JimKirk Well-Known Member

    The "peak" of the rut in my part of Georgia is November 8th to 10th. There is a "pre-rut" rut around October 15th to 20th. There is a "post rut" rut in late December around the 20th to 25th. Most of the real "wall hanger" buck are kill close to the peak, that is in my area.

    Jimmy K

    I believe that the very coastal section of Ga has an early rut as soon as late September and early Oct.
    Last edited: Sep 26, 2009
  14. dakotasin

    dakotasin Well-Known Member

    the rut really gets hot here in s.d. around the 13th of november. it is a pretty short period, but pretty intense. because of the season dates, many s.d. hunters have to hunt post-rut.
  15. 61chalk

    61chalk Well-Known Member

    I have read in a few hunting magazines that pretty much Nov. 14 is the average date for the rut everywhere. After this peak period the does that weren't bred will be ready again in dec. an in some cases even into early jan.
  16. ojibweindian

    ojibweindian Well-Known Member


    Up here in Marshall County, real close to Guntersville Dam, I've seen plenty of spotted fawns in September. I'm pretty sure the rut here, and in Jackson County, is pretty prolonged because of the whacked out doe:buck ratio. Anyway, as in Central Alabama, the rut here starts somewhere mid November and goes on and on and on. Over at Skyline, I've seen rutting activity in late January.
  17. jimmyraythomason

    jimmyraythomason Well-Known Member

    ojibweindian; I've hunted Skyline WMA several times and always saw deer, always does,very young does at that. (I always went in at Medlock Springs,) I haven't been there since the late '80s though. In the central,south central counties the main rut is the last week in January (and the last week of the season) every year with minor variations. Scrapes are constantly being tended and rattling and grunting still works as well as it does in the pre-rut. As far as I can tell, this part of Alabama and a small part of Mississippi are the only parts of the country where the rut consistantly occurs that late/early in the year.
    Last edited: Sep 26, 2009
  18. jimmyraythomason

    jimmyraythomason Well-Known Member

    Jim,dogs are legal in most areas until the middle of January. I don't hunt with dogs myself nor do we in our club.
  19. 351 WINCHESTER

    351 WINCHESTER Well-Known Member

    I honestely don't know when the rut occurs in ne fl as I have heard many different times. I spend as much time in the woods as I can to improve my odds, besides there are other things to shoot and observe in their natural habitat. It just does my soul good to get out in the woods.

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