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Seeing More Mature Bucks Now than Before or During the Season? #8785217 01/21/23 07:53 PM
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kry226 Offline OP
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I am. I was fortunate to put in about 2 1/2 weeks on stand this season and while most folks were talking about the drought, few deer, and especially few fawns, my lasting impression was that I had lots of deer, including a great fawn class this year, but near zero mature bucks seen on the hoof or on camera throughout antler growing season or the hunting season itself. I've been running a cell cam 24/7 for the last few years in the panhandle and I am definitely seeing more mature bucks now, post-season, than I have in at least the last year. Range conditions might be a reason, plus secondary and tertiary ruts, but this is absolutely not something I've ever observed before. Many of these bucks are still unbroken (VERY rare for that area), and have super dark tarsals.

Very interesting observations...at least for me.


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Re: Seeing More Mature Bucks Now than Before or During the Season? [Re: kry226] #8785234 01/21/23 08:40 PM
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flintknapper Offline
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Exactly why I like to take advantage of the Muzzleloader season in my County. (over now, but usually cover the first two weekends in Jan).

I see a good many 'survivors' during that time...as hunting pressure has subsided and they are on food sources trying to regain weight after rutting activity earlier.

Last week if October is another time I see my best bucks of the year.


Spartans ask not...how many, but where!
Re: Seeing More Mature Bucks Now than Before or During the Season? [Re: kry226] #8787320 01/24/23 08:16 PM
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angus1956 Online Content
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Yes, it is encouraging.
I've seen lots of new deer that weren't seen during the season.
My eyes bugged out of my head last week. There was a giant forked horn standing behind the house that was new to the neighborhood. He had to have been 18" wide and 12" tall. I know I don't have a picture but it did happen.
I'm going to keep my feeders going until early March just to keep them happy.

Re: Seeing More Mature Bucks Now than Before or During the Season? [Re: kry226] #8787849 01/25/23 06:10 PM
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late rains mild winter. lots of forbs.

we have same issue


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

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Re: Seeing More Mature Bucks Now than Before or During the Season? [Re: kry226] #8787850 01/25/23 06:16 PM
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Will find out this weekend. In Briscoe County we did finally start getting some moisture, and the last two days was great with the heavy snow that will melt and soak in really well. That country can rebound quickly as far as antler growth is concerned. 2022 season we really didn't see a decrease in population, but big bodied bucks with good racks were definitely not as plentiful. I'm really hoping for good spring/early summer rains.


An unethical shot is one you take, that you know you shouldn't.
Re: Seeing More Mature Bucks Now than Before or During the Season? [Re: kry226] #8788022 01/25/23 10:55 PM
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kry226 Offline OP
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Here's an example. Terrible antlers (looks like a broken tine), huge body, and doesn't seem overly rundown from the rut. Strange.

[Linked Image]


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