The Antler Almanac

Written by Big Game Camera Man on Saturday, October 19, 2013

The Antler Almanac


Bowhunting the pre-rut


It’s mid-October and the pre-rut is in progress or about to begin in all parts of eastern North America.


At this time of year, older, dominant bucks still are locked down—they do most of their traveling under cover of darkness.  Last year’s button bucks, now 1 ½ years old,  are being forced away from their mothers to begin establishing themselves as mature males.   By day, you see mostly bachelor groups of 1 ½ to 2 ½-year-old males.  Members of such groups spend a lot of energy sparring with other juveniles, opening up scrapes, annoying the does and generally fumbling around trying to claim breeding rights.


For a weekend hunter, or anyone whose family responsibilities or busy work schedule leave limited time to spend out in the field enjoying the sport of bowhunting, this is the perfect time to get outdoors, to watch the colors changing, and to have some fun and experiences with the young bucks. 


Pre-rut bucks are out there in good numbers, traveling in plain sight.  They’re very predictable and gullible—calling them in with a grunt tube or a doe bleat works like magic right now, and they’re very susceptible to deer lures and deer scents.  Taking any buck with a bow is a major accomplishment, but the odds are most in your favor during pre-rut.   You owe it to yourself to take advantage of this brief  opportunity.


Keep the tradition alive.  Take a youngster hunting or fishing!

About The Author

I’ve been in the business of filming hunts for 24 years now. I have hundreds of hours of...

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