Does The Rut Make It Too Easy?

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jamross65

Well-Known Member
I admit to trying to ruffle the feathers a bit with this thread but its not meant to upset anyone...

I was reading some of the comments on another thread where the OP raised the question of ...is the rut started...?

One of the res-ponders, WS, ruffled a few feathers himself with his reply about why should it make a difference in all year round deer management, yet I can see his point in some respects.

Well, on previous threads, primarily when it comes to discussion about shots taken at longer distance, I read comments about 'it's stalking, not shooting..., so learn to stalk..., get in close..., pit your wits and ability against your quarry..., it's about testing your skill against a wild animal..., anyone can shoot from 200yds away, it's hardly a test of stalking skill...,' the list goes on and on.

Well, where does stalking come in to it when we see a buck that has managed to evade us all season (sometimes over several seasons) 300yds away, that comes charging in to a few peeps and as has been described on here, has to be shouted at to stop so the shot can be taken, because he thinks he is about to get his end away?

I know the call does not work all the time. I know there has to be an element of skill in its appropriate use. But apparently sitting in a high seat is not stalking either according to others.

​So where does the use of the call sit with those that think it's all about 'the stalk'???
 
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pablo.222

Well-Known Member
I admit to trying to ruffle the feathers a bit with this thread but its not meant to upset anyone... I was reading some of the comments on another thread where the OP raised the question of ...is the rut started...? One of the res-ponders, WS, ruffled a few feathers with his reply about why should it make a difference in all year round deer management, yet I can see his point in some respects. Well, on previous threads, primarily when it comes to discussion about shots taken at longer distance, I read comments about 'it's stalking, not shooting..., so learn to stalk..., get in close..., pit your wits and ability against your quarry..., it's about testing your skill against a wild animal..., anyone can shoot from 200yds away, it's hardly a test of stalking skill...,' the list goes on and on. Well, where does stalking come in to it when we see a buck that has managed to evade us all season (sometimes over several seasons) 300yds away, that comes charging in to a few peeps and as has been described on here, has to be shouted at to stop so the shot can be taken, because he thinks he is about to get his end away? I know the call does not work all the time. I know there has to be an element of skill in its appropriate use. But apparently sitting in a high seat is not stalking either according to others. ​So where does the use of the call sit with those that think it's all about 'the stalk'???

personnally i think the call adds another element of excitment to stalking. Fait enough it may take the stalking part out of play a bit. But when u get one crashing through the under growth towards u and u cnt see it until its 20ft infront of you really does get the heart pounding. I like that stalking part aswel but this is just a different element and i get the same excitement from stalking into 50yds or or calling them.
 

jamross65

Well-Known Member
personnally i think the call adds another element of excitment to stalking. Fait enough it may take the stalking part out of play a bit. But when u get one crashing through the under growth towards u and u cnt see it until its 20ft infront of you really does get the heart pounding. I like that stalking part aswel but this is just a different element and i get the same excitement from stalking into 50yds or or calling them.

I should have added, (I agree by the way about the excitement, you should feel the heart thumping when it's a sika stag wanting to fight running at you through the trees!) I use the call. I use high seats. I shoot deer at distances I am comfortable with that others might decry me for. But is using the call during the rut with sexually charged bucks, a bit like going to a fish pond full of trout and sticking a pellet on a hook and throwing it in?

I don't have an issue with the call, but would guess that some on here may feel it's cheating, too easy, no real test of stalking skill???? Just saying, that's all... :stir:
 

pip

Well-Known Member
You are right, there is very little skill in 'stalking' during the rut, but I get a real buzz out of calling bucks in, and thats why I do it.
 

AdrianC

Well-Known Member
I guess it's different folks, different strokes. How do you define a 'stalk'?

Some people like the challenge of calling the bucks and don't forget, it's not guaranteed that you will call a buck, see one in a shootable position or call the right buck in. You still pit your wits against a wild animal.

Is stalking into the wind from behind cover and shooting an animal that has no idea that you're there fair? Is just sitting in a high seat up and out the way of deer to ambush them as they go about their business fair? To some it is, to others it's not and and to others it's a necessity. No-one will agree on the different methods all being fair and equal but at the end of the day if you choose one method over another you shouldn't be criticised for it or have one person telling you one way of shooting deer is more right or wrong than another.

The object of stalking or deer shooting is to kill a deer as humanely as possible and with minimal stress to the animal. The methods employed to achieve this are varied depending on the time of year, the ground you stalk on, your own abilities and probably many other factors that other members can mention.

To me, stalking in the rut is no more 'cheating' than sitting tucked away in a high seat in a place you know will produce deer, is there any skill involved in that?
Hypothetically of course.
Deer management is an all year round task and you can adapt and use the deer behaviour at certain times of year to put a buck or doe in the larder.

There is no right or wrong answer to the question as every stalker will have favoured methods and/or ethics which govern how they harvest their deer.
 

CWMMAN3738

Well-Known Member
If we all felt or thought he same it would be a very boreing world!
I love the stalk getting in to 20yds before shooting it has it's own buzz as dose calling in a buck or stag in the rut each gets my heart going when it dosent I will give it up. I agree it all adds different dimension to things as dose high seats, bipods & sticks, cammo clothing, hides & boxes, telescopic sights & binos, & even some rifles to some purists, all of which adds to the Range of methods devised by us to overcome nature.
I personally love all aspects of shooting as I do fishing like using the shrimp or prawn, to spinning a sprat or worming as well as the fly or spinning each has ther own application in different conditions & it no different with deer except that we haven't started banning methods yet & I pray we never do or those arts will be lost, so enjoy whatever floats your boat, feel the stag, the rush of adrenalin, & always respect for a worthy adversary!
 

BP75

Well-Known Member
I liken Roe stalking during the rut to Salmon fishing with a prawn. An exciting experience with more often than not a predictable result!
As effective as it can be it doesn't require the same level of skill as at other times of the year. Lets face it calling in Roe is a doddle!
Doesn't stop it being fun though and if I have a cull target to meet I can't say I am too fussed as to what time of the year I get my numbers as long as I get them and damage to trees etc is kept to a minimum.

Regards

BP
 

jamross65

Well-Known Member
1. Some people like the challenge of calling the bucks and don't forget, it's not guaranteed that you will call a buck, see one in a shootable position or call the right buck in. You still pit your wits against a wild animal.

2. Is stalking into the wind from behind cover and shooting an animal that has no idea that you're there fair? Is just sitting in a high seat up and out the way of deer to ambush them as they go about their business fair?

3. The object of stalking or deer shooting is to kill a deer as humanely as possible and with minimal stress to the animal. The methods employed to achieve this are varied depending on the time of year, the ground you stalk on, your own abilities and probably many other factors that other members can mention.

4. To me, stalking in the rut is no more 'cheating' than sitting tucked away in a high seat in a place you know will produce deer, is there any skill involved in that?

5. Deer management is an all year round task and you can adapt and use the deer behaviour at certain times of year to put a buck or doe in the larder.

6. There is no right or wrong answer to the question as every stalker will have favoured methods and/or ethics which govern how they harvest their deer.[/QUOTE]

Hi Adrian

just reading through your reply...

Point 1 - I know its not guaranteed, but I still feel that many stalkers who have failed so many times on a buck they know is always there, especially with a territorial species like roe, suddenly have the opportunity to use its fuzzy head to their advantage when its not really pitting their wits against an animal. Hiding behind a wall peeping away means the only wit they have to keep about them is containing the excitement.

Point 2 - In my experience stalking in a wind strong enough to mask any noise generally means spooky deer, constantly lifting their heads because of the continual blowing and associated noises with that wind. Wind can assist but a strong wind can make it very difficult and I have often been caught out with the wind suddenly changing or swirling. I'm not questioning fairness at all with the call. I use it, and seats. I don't care when it comes to getting my numbers, I will use any legal method available. I am asking the question really of those who claim it is all about the 'stalk', and there are some on here in that camp who I wonder if they would use the call?

Point 3 - I totally agree. It's not me (or anyone else I know) saying the call should not be used. Just questioning if it means some rely on it to get deer they would otherwise fail on.

Point 4 - I believe there is a skill in placing high seats in the correct location. I have some that constantly produce deer, and others that have now been moved. Guess that's because I'm not a complete expert! :lol:

Point 5 - Again I agree, any legal method to make the cull when pushed...

Point 6 - Like I said earlier, not suggesting there is anything wrong with it and as was said, we shouldn't decry anyone else for doing things their way. Like me coming round a corner and not bothering about closing down the 200yds to a beast if all factors are in my favour, whereas others would suggest 'stalking' in on the beast...

(and I am being very careful not to mention the employment of head shots...!!!)
 

AdrianC

Well-Known Member
Thanks for your reply Jamross.

Like I said, no right or wrong answer, just different methods and tactics favour different stalkers according to safety, deer, ground, ability etc etc.

Another factor for me is the ground I have to stalk over. It consists of three not very big fields and a wood that makes up about a quarter of my permission. I expect this is one of the smallest permissions amongst our members - and the ground is shared.

There are only four vantage points where I can take a safe shot due to geography, boundaries and the prevailing wind direction.

The deer share my ground with the neighbouring fields and woods so I'm not guaranteed to even see a deer on my patch no matter how carefully I stalk at the same time seeing them across the hedge on the non shootable territory. The rut gives me an opportunity to see the same deer moving about and and if luck favours me they will appear in the right place at the right time, calling them only improves my chances even though the chances of the right buck being in the right place is slim.

I'm lucky not to be governed by necessity to have to shoot every deer I see and can be selective. I have shot more four point yearling heads over the years than anything else as I try to manage the deer around the place in an ethical manner, take out the younger ones and leaving the better ones. Occasionally I will get the chance of a bigger buck and if the conditions favour me and I can justify it I will take it but the rut also give me a chance to see more of the local population on the move, see deer I didn't know were there, take the poorer heads and leave the better ones for breeding. This last weekend I was lucky. I took a four point yearling, an older buck with a poor head and a two or three year old with small non typical antlers. I took these because there was a prime buck in the safe zone and I was happy to see him knowing that when he get started, his genes will be passed on so I took out the competition. If the rut hadn't been starting these deer may not have been available to me.

This is only because the ground around me isn't shot over for a mile around so there is a relative safe haven for the deer that I can't manage, the rut brings them out a bit more.
 

jamross65

Well-Known Member
Adrian

Nothing wrong with using a call that 'happens' to cause a buck to jump the fence onto your ground!!!
 

willowbank

Well-Known Member
Thanks for your reply Jamross.

Like I said, no right or wrong answer, just different methods and tactics favour different stalkers according to safety, deer, ground, ability etc etc.

Another factor for me is the ground I have to stalk over. It consists of three not very big fields and a wood that makes up about a quarter of my permission. I expect this is one of the smallest permissions amongst our members - and the ground is shared.

There are only four vantage points where I can take a safe shot due to geography, boundaries and the prevailing wind direction.

The deer share my ground with the neighbouring fields and woods so I'm not guaranteed to even see a deer on my patch no matter how carefully I stalk at the same time seeing them across the hedge on the non shootable territory. The rut gives me an opportunity to see the same deer moving about and and if luck favours me they will appear in the right place at the right time, calling them only improves my chances even though the chances of the right buck being in the right place is slim.

I'm lucky not to be governed by necessity to have to shoot every deer I see and can be selective. I have shot more four point yearling heads over the years than anything else as I try to manage the deer around the place in an ethical manner, take out the younger ones and leaving the better ones. Occasionally I will get the chance of a bigger buck and if the conditions favour me and I can justify it I will take it but the rut also give me a chance to see more of the local population on the move, see deer I didn't know were there, take the poorer heads and leave the better ones for breeding. This last weekend I was lucky. I took a four point yearling, an older buck with a poor head and a two or three year old with small non typical antlers. I took these because there was a prime buck in the safe zone and I was happy to see him knowing that when he get started, his genes will be passed on so I took out the competition. If the rut hadn't been starting these deer may not have been available to me.

This is only because the ground around me isn't shot over for a mile around so there is a relative safe haven for the deer that I can't manage, the rut brings them out a bit more.

What a good, sensible, well written post, it just about describes one of my permissions, except I have no Roe.

Regards WB
 

Mr. Gain

Well-Known Member
I feel, with Adrian C, that the rut gives you an unusually good chance to see the bucks on your ground and to select the ones it would be best to cull.

When it comes to first-rate animals, I take MS's view: "It is the time of year that I let them get on with life and secure their future".

The roe rut is, however, often regarded as a commercial opportunity, enabling guides to put clients onto trophy animals in an exciting way, animals that in other circumstances might well prove elusive, and leave such clients less satisfied. I'm in a position to find this questionable, but livelihoods are livelihoods, and responsible guides won't over-exploit the resources they depend upon .

In fact, calling in any buck is bound to be exciting, but excitement shouldn't -in my book at least- overrule selectivity: it shouldn't be treated like calling foxes or decoying pigeons, etc. where everything that comes within range is fair game. Nevertheless there can be few who, having spent many fruitless hours in pursuit of these same deer in the rest of the season, don't feel a strong primal urge to exploit this brief "gold rush".

To my mind, therefore, a big part of the challenge when shooting in the rut is to make an accurate yet instant assessment of any buck that comes to the call and to exercise restraint where it is due.
 

craigievarkiller

Well-Known Member
personnally i think the call adds another element of excitment to stalking. Fait enough it may take the stalking part out of play a bit. But when u get one crashing through the under growth towards u and u cnt see it until its 20ft infront of you really does get the heart pounding. I like that stalking part aswel but this is just a different element and i get the same excitement from stalking into 50yds or or calling them.

+1
 

bewsher500

Well-Known Member
You can call anything to aid the shot.

You still have to have the skill to put the bullet where it needs to go, often on a target that you have had to track either through the scope or constantly reposition to make sure you can take a shot where you think it may pause/stop.

One of my last red stags was called from a lying position 100-120yds away. when it finally stopped it was downwind, 40-45 yds away with us in full view!!
now that gets the heart pumping!!


Hows the 6.5-284 going anyway Brian.

thought you were getting a 300RUM!?
 

Monkey Spanker

Well-Known Member
It is the time of year when the roe are mostly distributed into smaller groups or singles. They are generally easy to find and also pre-occupied with other priorities! Decent bucks which remain elusive will appear from nowhere with some inevitably getting shot. I wonder how many Does each year go un-covered because somebody shot the only buck nearby which they were reliant on to reproduce?:doh:It's not always good deer management I'm afraid, although it may benefit some.
MS
 

BP75

Well-Known Member
Don't foresee it being a problem worrying about Does not being covered. If for whatever reason there is not a buck on their doorstep they will go for a wander and find one pronto!
I check all my Does during the season for corpus luteum and I have yet to see any decrease in pregnancy rates regardless of how hard I have shot bucks.
Shooting pressure is quite high on Roe in Fife, particularly Bucks, so far I have not seen any detrimental effects on either fertility or population numbers.
You will not be able to shoot every buck in your area and at the end of the day Does are far better at finding Bucks than any stalker.
Regards
BP
 

AdrianC

Well-Known Member
I guess you could argue that every buck shot prior to the rut removes the opportunity of it reproducing but no-one really considers it in the first few months of the season. If you have a management plan or idea in place you apply it year round.
Take out the lesser animals and leave your prime stock out there. It applies to both sexes.
 
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