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The Dominant buck....What happens?

Old 11-07-2007, 02:40 PM
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Default RE: The Dominant buck....What happens?

I always figured a dominant buck would come in the area after you shot the big boy but i thought it would prolly be the following year. Well my brother shot a mature 11 pointer out of this small wooded area. Pretty much all the does were in these woods for a couple mile area. I was bummed and thought about pulling the stand and decided to wait a bit. It took a grand total of 3 days before another mature buck took over the trees and is already staying there with the does.
So yes, I do think that during the rut, another dominant buck will find the does if you shot the previous dominant breeder.

As for home ranges go, we have a 1000 acre farm that all summer long there are just a few does on...prolly around 10. As soon as late october hits, we can go out and see close to 60 deer. Including usually 3 to 4 mature bucks that were never there durring the summer months.
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Old 11-07-2007, 03:56 PM
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Default RE: The Dominant buck....What happens?

As far as migration, where I grew up the deer would migrate ten miles or more out of the prairie hills down to the foothills.

When you kill the dominant buck I don't think much happens to the herd dynamics.

The deer establish a pecking order before the rut really heats up, usually without fighting. They just size one another up. They fight when one doesn't back down.

During the rut, they have a fight over a doe if the pecking order isn't firmly established or if the two particular bucks haven't met yet. Sometimes a doe will lead a buck quite a way from home.

It is not like the dominant buck breeds all the does and the other bucks go without. I saw a study that checked DNA of deer to determine which buck was the father. The vast majaority of bucks are fathered by mediocre sized deer, because there aren't enough monster bucks to breed all the does.

If a buck stays with a doe for up to 48 hours, there just isn't enough time during the rut for the big boy to get around to all the does.

What happens instead is first come first served. The doe may not stand right away, so when a small buck is chasing her around, they might attract the attention of a higher ranking buck, then he chases the smaller one off and breeds the doe unless another higher ranking buck shows up.

Each buck wants to be in an area where he ranks higher, so if he isn't one the the top dogs in his area, he might move to where he gets more does. I have heard of radio collared deer that will move miles from home during the rut, and return after.

In areas where a lot of bucks are killed, even yearling bucks get in on the breeding.

So if you kill the senior deer, most of the other bucks are probably to busy chasing does to notice.

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Old 11-07-2007, 05:52 PM
Nontypical Buck
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Default RE: The Dominant buck....What happens?

This is a good question.. but would require much debate and too much typing to answer..

But if you indeed took the dominant buck off your grounds it would do little to effect the herd. I know you have many does in your area, so the likely hood of this dominant buck breeding more than a couple does (maybe 6 at most) and that's if you did not shoot him.

So now.. maybe 6 does are bred by 6 different bucks instead of one. Does another dominant buck move in...? Most likely your answer will be NO. A buck who has the character of dominance will not just move into any land because another has left. Sure, he may for a short period of time to breed the does. But he'll likely return to his home range afterwards seeking terrain he knows and is comfortable in. A bucks number 1 goal is to survive!

However, if you do have land thats fit for a buck of high stature he will be inclined to 'move' in. But MORE than likely during the summer months and the antler growing season. I've seen time and time again that once a real good BUCK bedding area becomes vacant it is replaced within a short time by another buck of relatively the same stature.
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Old 11-07-2007, 07:03 PM
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Default RE: The Dominant buck....What happens?

I also agree with much of what everyone else has said. I think #2 buck will take on the number one role in a short period. In your situation with that many does I would bet you have never seen a seriousbuck fight. I had the privelage of watching a #2 buck get and take control of the areaI was hunting. Over about a week and a half period I watched these to bucks go at it trying to kill each other. Finally the new commer broke the old dominant buck down. It litterally looked like the spirit of the previous dominant buck was broken. I watched him roam around all scared up like he didn't know what to do. With all the estrous that will be in the air in your area I have no doubt you will see new blood that will get you excited about next season.
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Old 11-07-2007, 07:10 PM
Dominant Buck
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Default RE: The Dominant buck....What happens?

Thanks, Chris. My luck....I'll see something that gets me excited.....about the time Rob arrows it.

j/k.....I hope he takes a NICE deer, here.

Thanks for all the replies. Stuff like this intrigues me.

And Chris....NO...I've never seen a buck fight. I've seen the youngsters sparring, but never an all out tussle.
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