Rut is one of the busiest times in the woods, for deer and hunters alike. Whitetail bucks become a little careless and much more active through rut season as they chase a doe through the woods. Since bucks are on the move, it might bring new deer through your hunting range. Even better these bucks are more focused on the chase than paying attention to what might be around them.
Here in Ohio hunting season for deer opens on September 28th of 2019 for the 2019-2020 hunting season and runs through February 2nd of 2020. Based off of studies and scientific tracking experts are predicting Ohio Whitetails to see an early rut this season. Rut dates are beginning the first week of November and ending mid to late November. That’s quite a range for someone who wants to really narrow in on the best chance at a big buck though. Watching deer behavior is the best way to really understand rut and when it starts.
No, there isn’t a sudden switch for hunters to go, “Oh! Rut is here!” Having an understanding of the changes in a whitetail’s behavior can give you almost the same effect though. Tarsal staining is one of the first signs rut is coming. The tarsal gland is located on the inner surface of the hind leg and will become much darker and prominent as rut approaches and will reach nearly black as rut comes into full swing. Bucks generally bed down through the day light hours, so when you being to see bucks moving during the day light hours you know rut is in. Paying attention to where you are seeing these deer is another key point to understanding rut. When you are seeing these bucks moving in new areas, more than likely it is because a doe chase brought him into the area. Because of these new movement patterns, and bucks with one thing on their mind, you may see more of them popping up on the side of the roads.
When hunting during rut there are extra precautions to take as you enter the woods. Deer will be in new locations and you don’t want to risk spooking one or even finding yourself face to face with an territorial whitetail. Rut at Hidden Hollow Whitetail Ranch brings out our biggest deer with the racks you’ll want to brag about for the years to come. Make sure you schedule your hunt of a lifetime early if you want to hunt near the predicted rut time. For more tips on hunting during rut season, click here.