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The rut is here! OUTDOOR

BY DAVE BECK

THE RUT IS HERE! THE RUT IS HERE!_As a favor to all my OTT friends and family who are not die-hard bow hunters, “THE RUT” is the breeding season for white-tailed deer and the best time to bag a monster buck._During the majority of the year, wily old bucks are pretty much nocturnal but during this brief window they will throw caution to the wind and venture out during daylight hours for the chance to secure their legacy for generations to come._Another way to say that is the big bucks want to date as many does as possible in the next few weeks.__ It’s not just my opinion that the bucks are rutting, I have some personal experience and stories to pass along to back that up._Last night I was in my stand and I saw some crazy buck_action._It all started innocently enough._I was minding my own business and out of the corner of my eye I could see a doe sprinting towards me._I could tell that she was exhausted._Her tongue was hanging out and her chest would rise and fall so quickly telling me that she was out of breath and most likely being pursued.___ For about 30 seconds it was just the out-of-breath doe and me._That quiet was interrupted when a young basket racked eightpoint buck raced in so quickly that he almost ran into the doe._She bolted and the chase was on._That was when a bigger buck showed up and joined the fracas._As quickly as those three deer showed up, seconds later they were over the crest, up the hill and gone._ I sat by myself for an hour or so before the show returned._This time, coming in from the opposite direction, the doe was back and in the same shape as she was the first time._She was completely spent and those same two bucks were right on her tail._When the bucks closed the gap, she bolted again and this time she almost circled my stand._I followed with my eyes and watched as they got almost behind me in their pursuit of the doe._Turns out, that was a big mistake on my part._When I turned back around, I saw a bruiser buck walking away from me and from where he was headed, I could tell where he had come from._Yep, he had walked within 20 yards of my stand and neither one of us knew the other one was there._ I watched the shooter buck walk away._I replayed in my head how he was probably involved in the same chase but gave it up when he decided the doe was playing hard to get. That was my first shooter buck sighting of the year and the disheartening thing about it is that I didn’t see him soon enough._As bummed as I was missing out on that chance, I still ended up with a really good consolation prize: I get to go back out and do it again!__

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November 10, 2021