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All but disappeared #7669605 11/22/19 02:24 PM
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Joseph Thomas Offline OP
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It’s well into rifle season at this point and generally by now the shops an local gathering holes are filled with hunters who have a story to tell. The story I’m getting in my small ETX community is that the bucks have all but disappeared. Are y’all experiencing the same thing or hearing similar stories. I see a lot of activity here on this forum but, I can’t recall a single group of people I know seeing anything thus far. Personally I’m on 60 acres in Jacksonville with a few feeders and cameras and haven’t seen a photo of a buck since the 1st of Nov. Some of my family in Henderson have the same luck, 5 feeders 5 cameras and not a photo of a buck this year. It’s like they’ve all but disappeared.

Re: All but disappeared [Re: Joseph Thomas] #7669629 11/22/19 02:39 PM
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It happens EVERY season without fail, hunters claiming the deer have gone underground. It doesn't take deer very long to catch on that so many are after them. I once read that 90% of the harvest during any given season occurs during the first two weeks. And I suspect 90% of that happens during the first week alone. Of course there are still plenty of deer out there, and tracking studies have shown they're not far away at all. They just start moving more at night.

I've had great success during the late season hunting during the middle of the week when the woods are much more quiet and when temperatures are cold. With natural browse being harder to find, this is the time to start scattering corn in food plots just to give them a little more incentive to step out in the open during the early morning or late afternoon. And try to stay as long as you can as deer often prefer to move during the most quiet times of the most quiet days.

Last edited by Texas Dan; 11/22/19 02:40 PM.

Dan,

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Re: All but disappeared [Re: Joseph Thomas] #7669643 11/22/19 02:54 PM
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redchevy Offline
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Pressure, those deer know what feeders are and when pressured will stay away.


It's hell eatin em live
Re: All but disappeared [Re: Joseph Thomas] #7669644 11/22/19 02:54 PM
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Pigsicles Offline
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We have a lot more traffic on our ranch than we had 10 years ago with oil and gas traffic, cattle being worked and hunters. Our bucks are way less spooky than they used to be and now just stop and watch as someone drives by.
We have seen multiple bucks each sitting since opening morning and even with the acorns everywhere we are still getting good feeder activity in Stephens Co.


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Re: All but disappeared [Re: Joseph Thomas] #7669649 11/22/19 03:04 PM
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From watching deer activity this week, the doe are moving around on their normal patterns and times. The bucks are on the hunt for females and show up around me at odd times. But I haven’t seen the big 9 point again recently. Many years ago, my Dad was a fan of hunting during the middle of the day during the rut. He called it “hunting the noon express”. In the peak of the rut, the bucks hunt full time, all day. No telling when you’ll see them.

It appears that the doe are getting tired of the bucks. There were about 6 doe on a ridge to my East, when a 6 point came out in front of me, head down and sniffing. He didn’t see the does, but they saw him, and faded into the trees.


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Re: All but disappeared [Re: Pigsicles] #7669663 11/22/19 03:18 PM
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Originally Posted by Pigsicles
We have a lot more traffic on our ranch than we had 10 years ago with oil and gas traffic, cattle being worked and hunters. Our bucks are way less spooky than they used to be and now just stop and watch as someone drives by.
We have seen multiple bucks each sitting since opening morning and even with the acorns everywhere we are still getting good feeder activity in Stephens Co.

Deer get used to human activity with time. If the rancher and oil fild guys were shooting at the deer like the hunters at feeders are I doubt you would be having the same result.


It's hell eatin em live
Re: All but disappeared [Re: Joseph Thomas] #7669669 11/22/19 03:23 PM
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Or they are just locked down with does...,


Donate to TX Youth hunting program.... better to donate then to waste it in taxes

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Re: All but disappeared [Re: Joseph Thomas] #7669674 11/22/19 03:26 PM
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I talked on the phone with my dad about this subject last night. He has a place he hunts on with a friend near Merkel and he told me that by now he would be getting close to limiting out, if not already, in previous years. This year he hasn't seen anything except birds and squirrels. I don't believe there is anything to blame except bad timing.

Re: All but disappeared [Re: Joseph Thomas] #7669676 11/22/19 03:27 PM
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Joseph Thomas Offline OP
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I guess it’s all a matter of wait and see. I got a doe on opening day so, meat in the freezer. Just haven’t seen any bucks. We are all used to seeing bucks at night but we haven’t even been seeing those lately. Took a week of vacation and been doing some mid week hunts this week. Hopefully today pans out, in the stand now...not much going on besides squirrels.

Re: All but disappeared [Re: Joseph Thomas] #7669684 11/22/19 03:33 PM
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I do agree things slow down after opening, but I'm hoping it's just the acorns falling at least this year. Deer disappeared early and even my hogs disappeared for almost 2 weeks, not a one. Hogs are now back to usual and deer are showing up again.

Charlie


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Re: All but disappeared [Re: BOBO the Clown] #7670162 11/23/19 01:02 AM
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Originally Posted by BOBO the Clown
Or they are just locked down with does...,


The rut is pretty much done in the area where I hunt in Houston County. Still, it always seems many of the does are missed and you end up seeing a buck or two chasing them again in early December.

All the reports I've heard point to below average start to the season.

Last edited by Texas Dan; 11/23/19 01:04 AM.

Dan,

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Re: All but disappeared [Re: Joseph Thomas] #7670178 11/23/19 01:27 AM
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Rut time. Regular seen bucks get all of the handy does bred then go on a lady hunt. After rut they will show back up.
Bucks roam for many miles during the rut.

Re: All but disappeared [Re: Joseph Thomas] #7670227 11/23/19 02:45 AM
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FWIW...

I can go to my main spot and see a coyote or bobcat without fail

I’d honestly say, 8 out of 10 times

Now, I get maybe 2-3 coyote/bobcat pics a year out of 1000’s of pics

They’re around


The Astro’s are cheating scum bags!
Re: All but disappeared [Re: Joseph Thomas] #7670290 11/23/19 03:59 AM
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I hunt in southern Oklahoma and rifle season hasn't even started yet. Our bucks seemed to disappear off our trail cams shortly before archery season started. Very few deer on camera period - and it has been that way all season.

They are out there though, getting fat on acorns, persimmons and who knows what else. I've been out there for 7-8 sits as of last weekend and seen 4 deer at the feeders - and probably 5-7 times as many from where I was sitting at those times.

Still, it does feel like the bucks have left the county. Hopefully, the remaining acorns will sour quickly and we'll start seeing more of our deer again soon.

Re: All but disappeared [Re: Joseph Thomas] #7670318 11/23/19 04:36 AM
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There are a lot of things that prevent buck sightings:

[list]
[*]How long are you spending on the stand?
[*]You have a small property with a limited number of stands. What is the wind doing?
[list]
[*]What's the acorn crop look like?
[*]Are you only hunting feeders?
[*]Ever hunt get off the beaten path and hunt a scrap line?
[*]How much shooting has taken place in recent seasons?

We need a little more information. There can be lots of reasons you aren't seeing bucks.


Last edited by wsjaxIV; 11/23/19 04:37 AM.

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Re: All but disappeared [Re: Joseph Thomas] #7670355 11/23/19 06:31 AM
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Too many variables that cause this, The 3 places around us are like a war zone the opening weekend, then we see nothing, wait 2 weeks and it is back to normal.


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Re: All but disappeared [Re: Joseph Thomas] #7670398 11/23/19 12:31 PM
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I watch the deer on my place out the window, it is a playground and feeding place for a lot of deer. But, it is my first fall here and the deer have all but vanished, there are lots of bucks locked down with hot does in the woods and they won't move very far all day. Also I have counted 9 bucks killed by vehicles w/in 10 miles of my place, most of them 8 pointers, very little hunting pressure around here but the acorns have dropped also so no activity at the feeders. We will see how it all plays out. I let some big boys walk during archery season because I figured I had all general season to wait for a bigger one to come to my treestands, maybe won't happen now?


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