rebAL - I honestly do not know if it is a second rut, a late rut or just a continuation of the normal/usual rut. I did not see any signs of the rut for about the first week of Southern Zone until this past weekend when I noticed scrapings and saw a small buck leaving sign. And yet, I am seeing some indication of a return to normal movement and feeding patterns.
I think this year was so easy on them, with good nut crops and lots of greenery staying later that possibly there wasn't any natural pressure to rut. I dunno. I actually think that I will see more of a return to normal patterns, especially as the weather begins to change and fronts start moving in.
Good luck if yo haven't already filled your tag(s). Mikey.
In the areas I hunt (Otsego and Dutchess Counties) I saw lots of scrapes and bucks chasing does in a big way a few days before the gun opener and the whole first week, which was kind of late as compared to most years based on my observations. Anyway, with all that activity around 11/15-20 we can probably figure the late rut to peak around 12/10-15. Get out there with the bow or smokepole in the late season this year! Particularly in areas with lots of deer like here in Dutchess County where we have a lot of deer and a ridiculous doe to buck ratio, the remaining bucks are very active (still plenty of does coming into estrus that the buckies didn't get to in their first two cycles in October-November).
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