What are some tactics you use during the pre-rut and early rut?

By Grant Woods,

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← Grant's AnswersHunting Tactics
Mr. Woods,
Where I live, the rut should be starting in about half a month. What are some of your tactics for hunting the pre-rut and early rut?


I tend to hunt food/cover patterns during the pre-rut.  I look for locations where deer will be using during daylight hours and that I can access, hunt, and exit without alerting deer.

During the rut I either hunt travel areas or the edge of bedding areas.  Bucks will often use travel areas that go from bedding cover to bedding cover while seeking a receptive doe.  They will often seek receptive does within bedding areas.  If they locate a receptive doe they often will nudge her out of bedding cover and try to separate her from other deer, especially other bucks.  I probably hunt closer to bedding areas during the rut than any other time of the year.  

Enjoy creation,