Overall Activity: After last week’s lull, there was nowhere to go but up in terms of deer activity on the Great Plains and while the rut isn’t exactly busting out, at least a few signs are appearing across the region. My contacts have also started to get serious for the season, reporting that, while things are still a bit quiet, rubs and scrapes are starting to pop up and deer are transitioning from concentrating on the feed bin to rut-related behavior. As we go into next week’s full moon, daytime activity may slow, but things are fixing to bust out all over and I’d be planning to put as much time on stand as possible.
Rubs/Scrapes: In central Kansas, Curt Frazell (who killed the great buck in the video above) had an encounter with a 130-class, 3-year old buck, which tore up a tree right in front of him. “From my point of view in Kansas we are a few weeks out,” said Frazell. “But there are lots of rubs and a few scrapes in the woods right now.”
Fighting: Still quiet on the fight front, although in western Nebraska, Ryan Reisdorff reported there is a little “early-on horn locking going on where they are testing the waters,” among the mule deer there, but “they are still in bachelor groups.”
Daytime Activity: Curt Frazell checked his trail cameras over the weekend and said some mature bucks were caught on their feet right before dark. His brother Clete reported things were slow in his part of Kansas over the weekend, but he did see a small buck cross the road at mid-day Sunday. “Kinda weird.”
Estrus Signs: None reported.
X Factor: Next week’s full moon may put the brakes back on in terms of daytime movement, but corn, soybean and sugar beet harvests are in full swing across most of the Great Plains and that may kick up a buck or two while the sun is still well above the horizon.