You just can’t predict the rut, regardless of temperature.
QUESTION: This year, right about the time of peak rut, we had a really warm spell and I hardly saw any deer. I’m wondering is it even worth hunting when it gets warm like that?
ANSWER: There is research showing that daytime deer activity slows down when temperatures are unseasonably warm, especially in northern deer. That’s likely in part because they’ve grown a dense winter coat of hollow hair, and overexertion can be stressful. However, all bets are off when the rut is on.
Exceptionally warm days can be very slow, but I’ve witnessed bucks chasing does even when temperatures were in the 60s and 70s. As an old friend likes to say, “The best time to be in the woods is when the season is open.” — Recent Ask the Biologist Question:
Lying Down on the Job: Bucks, and all whitetails, do things that defy explanation. Find Out The Answer!