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Wood Guy 11-23-2003 09:03 AM

The rut, movement and the weather...
The weather has been unusually warm where I hunt (Fingerlakes Region of NY) most of the fall (also across the country). A couple of times in October the temp fell and I anticipated the rut would be going full bore by 1st or 2nd week of November. Well here we are 3 weeks (almost 4) into November and the temps have stayed warm and the weather has been wet... it seems like the rut just hasn' t taken off yet. Am I having wishful thinking or is this it for the big rut of 2003 - across the country? I hunted opening day in NY on 11/17 (that was the coldest day in the last week and it was around 50 degrees)... today it is going be around 65 degrees... I hate to complain about warm weather this late into the year, but because of this I think the rut is on hold and the deer aren' t moving because they don' t have to go far to get to their food or water source. Anyone have any comments - when the temp goes down will the rut truly begin and will the deer truly start to move?

Wood Guy

deerhunter1224 11-23-2003 10:16 AM

RE: The rut, movement and the weather...
I was wondering that to.The past few days I havent seen many deer only saw some yesterday morning thats it.

jtom 11-23-2003 10:24 AM

RE: The rut, movement and the weather...
We have been experiencing the same here in Ga. I personally think that they are mating mostly at nite now and simply not moving about during the days as much as they have in the past. But that is strictly my opinion.

Russ otten 11-23-2003 10:29 AM

RE: The rut, movement and the weather...
Here in Ms deer movement the first 2 days of the gun season has been minimal. Gunfire has been sporadic, not like the war zone it has sounded like the previous years. We have had high winds and warm weather but a cold front is supposed to come thru tomorrow. Maybe that will improve deer movement. In fact, sightings have been very slim this fall.


tennhunter 11-23-2003 10:30 AM

RE: The rut, movement and the weather...
Ditto in VA & TN. Disappointing so far. I' m hoping for an eventful Thanksgiving hunt.

NY Bowhunter 11-23-2003 11:21 AM

RE: The rut, movement and the weather...
Hey woodguy,
I' m from central NY too. Fingerlakes region. I am one that believes the rut is dependant on the amount of daylight available to the deer. I don' t think cold, wind, rain, temp. affect the rut at all.
I do however think that all of the undesirable weather makes daylight movement next to nothing, which means theyre doing the deed at night. Does don' t move bucks can' t chase em' . This is probably the worst hunting season as far as deer movement I' ve seen in a long time (bow and gun). all and all i think the rut is going and probably on the downward side of peek. I saw some craziness opening day with bucks chasing does, but after that I' ve seen nada.
where you hunting anyway??

BuckSecrets 11-24-2003 01:37 PM

RE: The rut, movement and the weather...


NY Bowhunter is right. The shortening of daylight triggers the rut and it is not affected by temperature. However, warm days make deer activity less, so it seems as though the rut is not on, and they move more at night. But a sudden cold snap will spike deer activity and you will see more deer, that' s what has led many hunters to conclude that temperature affects the rut.

Good Luck this Season!

JeremyS 11-24-2003 06:35 PM

RE: The rut, movement and the weather...
Hey Wood Guy, you should know that every single year in NY it gets cold and crispy right as bowhunting ends, which gets our hopes up, and then just as the regular season starts it gets warm and toasty again. Never seems to fail huh? I hunt down in Cayuga/Tompkins county and was there in the rain on opening day. My buddy took a small buck and I passed up a small 4 point, and had 3 does that would' nt give me a clear shot. Around 4:30 I heard some grunting and figured it was my buddy on the other side of the woods. 5 minutes later I heard it again above me and realized that nobody was hunting there.........I turned and watched a beautiful 8 point trailing a doe into the pines. Never got a shot but it made a cold and wet day that much better. But you are right, it seems the activity is very slow this year and that is the only " nice" buck I' ve had in sight yet. Hopefully it will cool down again? At least by blackpowder season you' d think!

timbercruiser 11-24-2003 08:02 PM

RE: The rut, movement and the weather...
If the amount of daylight triggers the rut, why is it that in different areas of the country (sometimes only a hundred or so miles away) the rut kicks in at different times of the year? The bucks in our area normally don' t start to rut until mid January.

BuckSecrets 11-24-2003 09:10 PM

RE: The rut, movement and the weather...


Local genetics and chance affect the timing of the rut slightly as well. And just like humans, does go into heat at different times in different areas also. This isn' t an exact science and does not work the same everywhere at exactly the same time.

If a doe goes into heat a little early in an area, the bucks will respond, and this will create a local early rut. But just because it happens to coincide with a local cold snap doesn' t mean that that' s the reason for it.


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