Targeting 5 year old bucks

Discussion in 'Iowa Whitetail Conference' started by MN Slick, Nov 20, 2018.

  1. MN Slick

    MN Slick PMA Member

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    For the guys getting it done on 5 years old and up bucks what stage of the rut are you getting it done? I'm considering moving my vacation back a week and hunting the last 5-7 days of October through very early November rather than the 4th or 5th up to MO gun season unless the weather is a debacle in October. I know the 5-10th is great for all out action but it seems the oldest dudes are often locked down on the first does during that time period.

    I'm 5.5 hours from my farm so I don't have the luxury of jumping in the tree on short notice plus I hunt in Missouri and gun season screws up the period after peak breading that you Iowa guys can enjoy.
     
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  3. Tmayer13

    Tmayer13 PMA Member

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    I would personally keep it the same. My last 3 bow bucks were the 6, 7, 8....and i would say the same if you watch any sort of social media, seems like pics of giants are always popping up during that time. I do believe if the weather is right that last week in October is very magical but going off trail surveillance only November they are up on their feet more often.
     
  4. Wapsi Tree

    Wapsi Tree Well-Known Member

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    I would say it depends a bit on your doe/buck ratio. If you're over run with does than it's a bit difficult early...the next hot one is 20 yds away. Big boys will always be on their feet for final round and last call.
     
  5. IowaBowHunter1983

    IowaBowHunter1983 Super Moderator Staff Member

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    5 years worth of trail cam data confirms without a doubt for me that the last week of October is the best week. After that... probably up for debate.
     
  6. Sligh1

    Sligh1 Administrator Staff Member

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    I’ve personally killed very few nov 1-4. Just me. I’ve got some on patterns in oct when working scrapes or i know core area. The rest - nov 5-22 is best for me personally knowing there will be lockdown in there.
     
  7. meyeri

    meyeri PMA Member

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    Depends on your property and when you get the most mature buck activity on camera. The main area I hunt is doe bedding and I see peak mature buck movement about the 7-14th. I still hunt hard Oct. 31 and on, but I haven't seen a mature buck on his feet till the 3rd of the November the last 3 yrs.

    Sent from my Pixel 2 using Tapatalk
     
  8. Obsessed

    Obsessed Active Member

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    I've come to the same conclusion. No hard chasing, but the bucks are sneaking around 'looking' in the early AM and late PM shooting hours. They are traveling main trail systems, not running all over the place. Much easier to set up on and put yourself in a high percentage shot opportunity spot. Once rut goes full tilt, deer are running all over the place. Hard chased does don't follow trails, and bucks follow does wherever they go. The last week of October is a week of magic days to hunt mornings and evenings. Rut is good for all day hunts.
     
  9. Daver

    Daver PMA Member

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    I would be in alignment with these dates FWIW. ^^ I have killed several older bucks in early November, but that was back when I was hunting the middle part of the state. Go figure, but since I have deer hunted almost exclusively in far southern Iowa for about 18 years now, those later dates that Skip references have been more productive for us.
     
  10. 203ntyp

    203ntyp PMA Member

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    I agree, they might be on their feet more the month of November but getting them to stop or leave a doe is quite challenging. The majority of 35 buck I harvested happened the last week of October.
     
  11. MN Slick

    MN Slick PMA Member

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    I studied trail pics on my farms from 2014 through 2017 but I tracked bucks 3.5 and older. For sure Nov 5th up to MO gun was best for 3.5 and older deer but I can't conclude it was best for 5.5 and older. Not knowing the age of bucks make it difficult to track just the 5.5 and older dudes. Without out a doubt late Oct to about Nov 4, 2017 was best for the older bucks on my farms. I need to compile 2018 trail cam pics but I did see a 5.5 on 11/5 and another on 11/6. Could have been some others that were 5.5 but I suck at aging by body and I always want to put those with marginal racked bucks into the 3.5 or 4.5 category which I know is flat wrong.

    I need to take 2 weeks off !
     
  12. IowaBowHunter1983

    IowaBowHunter1983 Super Moderator Staff Member

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    I have not shot a buck on November 5, 6, 7, 8, or 9. Always before or after. I think in large part because I am overrun with does. Personally, I have better luck when they are looking and not following if that makes sense. Crazy how many pictures of daywalkers I get the last week of October. It's like clockwork.
     
  13. StickersNKickers

    StickersNKickers Camo Up!

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    One buck that I know has to be 10+ always seems to show up on camera the last week of Oct. thru about 11/10, and then disappears until shedding. But, I'm sure he just dodges the camera. And I don't get out as much in the last half of Nov.

    The past several years I've hunted mostly weekends, so whatever dates those fall on, but before that my time off would be focused somewhere in the 10/31 -11/10 range. The 3 bucks I've shot with a bow have been on the 6th, 7th, and 10th. I didn't have them aged, but guessing the one from the 7th was 5.5+. The other two I'm guessing were 4.5, but could have been 5.5. Definitely wouldn't think they were 3.5, and no older than 5.5. But, I'm one to be conservative on aging and let them walk to the neighbors to get shot.
     
  14. Sligh1

    Sligh1 Administrator Staff Member

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    MYSTERY SOLVED!!! MO & 5.5’s!!!!!.......
    That combo doesn’t exist!!!! :p:D;):confused::rolleyes:
    MN & MO- I think if u want to hunt 5.5’s... take up a more realistic hobby- tracking down Sasquatch!!! U guys got em there with that big timber!!!!:eek::eek:
    Just pulled my MO trail cam card...
    [​IMG]
     
  15. Elvis188

    Elvis188 PMA Member

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    You sure that isn't a picture of Bonker after one of his all night possum binges!!
     
    Last edited: Nov 20, 2018
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  16. Charlie Lueth

    Charlie Lueth New Member

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    In the area I hunt, I usually start getting mature bucks on camera late October in daylight for a few days and then it's hit and miss after that. A lot of guys are saying anywhere from the 1st-10th for their bucks. For my spot, year after year the best time is the 10th-20th. I have killed on the 13th, 16th,17th,17th,19th Although my biggest buck I killed on the 28th of October.
     
  17. rutnstrut

    rutnstrut PMA Member

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    My best buck to date was a Halloween evening kill but Nov. 6th, and 7th have been really good to me time and time again for 5 plus year old bucks... Best movement ever in general was on a November 13th and I saw 3 different gross booners that day that Id imagine were all 5 or better. I was hunting a big drop tine buck a few years back and had tons of cams all over his area the year he had the drop... Only day I ever got a daylight pic of him that year was November 16th and he was on 4 different cams otherwise completely nocturnal the entire season
     
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  18. Sligh1

    Sligh1 Administrator Staff Member

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    Side note: Best night of movement on mature bucks I’ve seen all season.... TONIGHT. Hands down. 3 of us all had more mature buck movement on 3 different farms. Absolutely insane. Blew away any other day by long shot. NOVEMBER 20!!!!
     
  19. MN Slick

    MN Slick PMA Member

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    Hey now, don't be digging on MO! Haha!
     
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  20. BJohnson

    BJohnson Well-Known Member

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    As stated above, I believe it depends on the properties you hunt. Is your area a core holding spot for mature bucks or is it an area that they cruise through??

    In my case, I have only one older deer that I have taken in the first ten days of Nov. I need to catch mature bucks the last week in Oct or after the 17-18th of Nov. The areas I hunt are not "holding" mature bucks but they do stretch their ranges and pass through looking for first or last does during those early and late breeding periods. In the peak breeding times, it is my guess that they are locked down in neighboring farms (or I just suck at hunting peak rut days ????).
     
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  21. StickersNKickers

    StickersNKickers Camo Up!

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    Thoughts on next week? Don't have any time to hunt this week until Sunday.
     

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