Aiming the bow for hunting the deer can be a little difficult. Group size and distribution of mule deer vary seasonally and with habitat conditions [29, 31]. Learning where this winter range is—and therefore where the deer are likely to be—prior to hunting is important to your success. You surely have outstanding articles and reviews. It may be necessary to build a blind of sage or some other handy vegetation. There are a few advantages to the hunter between the two species. The mule deer habit of stopping to reconnoiter after it has jumped from its midday bed. In order to understand black tailed deer, it is important to study their mating behavior. In such areas, having someone along with knowledge of the terrain and deer habits is essential for any consistent success. Still, retirement is rather an ugly word to Robb, and so he continues to contribute to a variety of publications, just as he continues to hunt around the world. He may be isolated and breeding a doe in a nearby coulee or thicket. The bulk of the mule deer rut lasts three to four weeks. Once a herd of does—at this time of year, they’re like a buck magnet—is located, take your time and glass both the herd and the surrounding hills for a buck. Best 40 Liter Backpack for Overnight and Day Hiking, Best Bow String Silencers for Compound and Recurve Bow, Planning a Kayaking Trip for Camping and Fishing, Best Places to Kayak in the US: Where to Go Kayaking. For several days they had passed a given point, and that is where he established his blind. The deer were feeding in an alfalfa field at dawn and would linger there for a couple hours before departing the private ground and moving to adjacent juniper and brush-covered public land hills to bed for the day. Colorado holds extensive mule deer habitat and supports some of the largest mule deer numbers when compared to other states and the Canadian provinces. Your email address will not be published. The deer were gregarious throughout the study; group sizes ranged from one to 24, with a mean of 5.2. The mule deer hunter in that the animal is less apt to jump the string than the wary whitetail. These may work toward another driver as well as toward the waiting standers, or sitters. Girl Hunter: Revolutionizing the Way We Eat, One Hunt at a Time. I was able to slowly sneak within 45 yards of the bedded deer, then grunted the buck to his feet and 20 yards closer before my arrow found its mark. So, that’s why I love camping. As with the whitetail, the biggest mule deer bucks are the canniest. The muley is frequently found in consort. It was a great hunt and a no-lose situation for me. He had numerous chances at does, but the bucks that normally came through were avoiding the spot. Although it is not so obvious, the whitetail does about the same thing. The mule deer (Odocoileus hemionus) is a deer indigenous to western North America; it is named for its ears, which are large like those of the mule. Those familiar with the somewhat crowded and close-range whitetail deer hunting of the East will find mule deer hunting a wide-open pleasure. The deer crossed the basin each morning, but rather than go into the canyon, they would move up on the prairie toward some other destination. Although the muley may stand around longer than the whitetail, it is apt to travel much farther distances to a position of relative safety once it takes off. Prior investigations have indicated that mule deer spend an increased amount of time in forested habitat during resting periods (Collins and Urness 1983, Altendorf et al. When a buck breeds a doe, they usually become isolated from the larger group of does for a day or two. Do you support these goals? photo M. Noonan. Stotting (also called pronking or pronging) is a behavior of quadrupeds, particularly gazelles, in which they spring into the air, lifting all four feet off the ground simultaneously.Usually, the legs are held in a relatively stiff position. Notify me of follow-up comments by email. I saw some gorgeous bucks that I trailed for a while as I took photographs. By clicking "Accept" or using our website, you consent to the use of cookies unless you have disabled them. It is to possible to escape its pursuer. We are forced to admit to the limitations in intelligence possessed by dumb animals. To support regulated hunting as a viable component of mule deer and black-tailed deer conservation. These cookies will be stored in your browser only with your consent. Retrouvez Mule Deer: Behavior, Ecology, Conservation et des millions de livres en stock sur Amazon.fr. By Michael Pendley I laid ambush after ambush for that buck, only to be busted by one of his 40-some companions for seven straight days. Yet in New Hampshire, studies have shown that early-season deer have averaged about 192 pounds. Bucks which are older than yearlings will often group together, otherwise they remain solitary. This inactivity during the heat of the day is a behavioral adaptation to the desert environment that conserves water and keeps the body temperature within livable limits. Likely I’m likely to bookmark your blog post . Mule deer are variably gregarious, showing a great frequency of solitary individuals (up to 64%) and small groups (60.8% to 78% of groups with ≤5 deer) [28, 29]. Ecology and Social Behavior of the Mule Deer James Ruos Gettysburg College Project Ninnber 85 During the summer of 1955 between the dates of June 16 and August 20, a secondary study was made on the species of mule deer, Odocoileus hemionus. Areas of quaking aspen or scrub oak provide driving opportunities quite similar to those in Eastern forests. If a probable movement of alarmed deer is known, excellent stands can be established for those on the waiting end of the drive. When planning a rut-hunt for mule deer or blacktail in new country, it will pay to call area biologists to determine when the rut generally occurs and when the peak of the rut is anticipated. Mule deer females (does) reside in clans of maternal descent. When we are trying to build up our own ego through citing the great cunning of our quarry. Anthony Harwell drew a coveted rut hunt tag in northern Arizona and came away with this whopper buck. If this is not true, the horrendous highway kill of animals would not occur. This behavior can be used to the hunter’s advantage in several ways. Their generally larger antlers tend to make the Western deer appear considerably bigger although statistics indicate that both the whitetail and the mule deer range in size according to their habitat. 2001). This lower-elevation terrain can be everything from sage brush flats to cedar and juniper jungles to open hillsides to privately-owned croplands. So when you’re working with a new hunter, don’t forget to talk about all that other stuff: share photos, tell stories, talk strategy and tactics, describe the terrain and scenery. It should be noted that much rut behavior occurs on or near winter range. Filed Under: Hunting Tagged With: Mule Deer. If the movement is somewhat indiscriminate and deer tend to fan out over a wide area in their movements. ), I wasn't sure how cranky the males would still be. Like whitetails, during courtship, a mule deer buck will test a doe’s readiness for breeding by obtaining a urine sample. Despite the larger areas to cover, the terrain is frequently such that deer can be funnelled through the more obvious spots such as heads of canyons and necks of timber created by open areas of stone or sand. If you spot only fair-to-middlin’ bucks with the does, don’t give up. Winter-feeding has the potential to disrupt both winter foraging activities and migratory patterns. You also have the option to opt-out of these cookies. All animals have limited intelligence when compared with human understanding. If you were a wolf, or a bear, or a cougar, deer would know what move to make after you made your move. The rutting season occurs during late fall. Depending on the latitude of the deer, this can be anywhere from early November to late December and into January. Another surprise awaiting the uninitiated who comes from the East is the difficulty in judging distance. His work has appeared in titles small and large, from American Hunter and American Rifleman to Whitetail Journal, Field & Stream, Petersen’s Hunting, Deer & Deer Hunting, and many others. My muley hunting with the bow and with the camera has been confined primarily to California, Colorado, Wyoming, and South Dakota. The white-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus), also known as the whitetail or Virginia deer, is a medium-sized deer native to North America, Central America, Ecuador, and South America as far south as Peru and Bolivia. A too hurried drive may send the deer into the surrounding hills and canyons. Other times, they may break into the open to gain ground and return to the thicket ahead of the drivers. When deer hunting in the high mesa country, prior to the game’s being pushed down by snow, driving is much more practical than in the open prairies and canyon country. More tags are available for those who choose to use either a bow or muzzleloader, but, again, competition for them is stiff and drawing odds often long. Bless you for sharing your website page. Chapter II describes how desert mule deer activity changed in southwest Texas during the breeding seasons of 1990-91 and 1991-92. The experience is hunting mule deer and whitetails require much the same preparation, woods lore, and tackle. To develop programs that focus on recruitment and retention of youth into the shooting sports and conservation. This is also known as “rutting”, as a huge component of their mating formalities is ritualistic male on male competition. Also. AVOID SKYLINING. Whatever it might be, give your newbie plenty of reasons to go hunting with you … besides a heavy vest. But, at the distance where it makes its distinctive stop to decide on its next move, it is usually well beyond sensible bow range. The does, badgered by every testosterone-overloaded juvenile buck in the region, often stay close to the dominant buck and seek his protection from unwanted advances. Especially, in mule deer country and to make plans accordingly. Maternal investment plays a crucial role in juvenile survival, and benefits may continue even after offspring have become relatively independent (Byers 1997; Caro 1994; White et al. Also, where the Eastern whitetail would run himself to death trying to find a place to hide. Your email address will not be published. The other is that mule deer run substantially larger than Northeastern whitetailed deer. Deer live in groups and within each is a dominant deer. When this occurs, he may throw what Dr. Geist describes as a “temper tantrum.” Then, with little notice, his body becomes stiff, his upper lip begins to quiver, and a high-pitched tone resonates from deep within his throat. If you have your venison processed and don’t have access to a grinder, simply chop some raw bacon into a fine dice and blend it into your ground venison by hand. It has not learned much about ballistics. This website uses cookies to improve your experience while you navigate through the website. we will give insight on hunting them. However, the average is considerably less than that, averaging about the same as the Eastern whitetail. When they quit breeding—they often quit cold-turkey in one day—they become isolated, looking for thick bedding cover in which they can try and recuperate enough strength to survive the winter. The first, and one that is sometimes shared by gunners from wide areas who have hunted both the whitetail and the mule deer is that the muley is stupid by comparison with the whitetail. Amazon, the Amazon logo, AmazonSupply, and the AmazonSupply logo are trademarks of Amazon.com, Inc. or its affiliates. Each of these should be thoroughly studied before they are entered since they are favourite bedding spots for mule deer. Okay, then brag on your dog. Mule deer are primarily browsers, with a majority of their diet comprised of forbs (weeds) and browse (leaves and twigs of woody shrubs). Don't Miss: Deer Hunting Tip: Reading Deer Body Language 101 Here’s the Challenge: Why Do You Go Hunting? The difference between elk and mule deer here is that the dominant buck does not control the does like a bull elk controls a harem of cows. As an experienced bird hunter, you know there is much more to a successful day than a full game bag. Of course, that morning six bucks milled about his former blind while he watched helplessly out of range. We think that these elements of mule deer behavior provide the foundation for how mule deer arrange themselves on a landscape. Mule Deer Behavior and Hunting Tips to Follow, Mule Vs Whitetail Deer: Understanding Their Intelligence and Behavior, Choose a Binocular that Matches with Bows, Stealth Techniques in Deer Hunting with Bows, Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window), Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window). Looking at the bluest sky, I forget all my stresses. In heavily thicketed Eastern forests, it is quite common to overshoot deer with the bow and carbon hunting arrow. The Rocky Mountain mule deer, most common and largest of the black-tailed deer, will go up to about 380 pounds. This is more a matter of instinct than stupidity or intelligence. There’s no doubt hunting the rut is a great time to get a crack at a true trophy-class buck. Consequently, on the last morning, he moved to the opposite side of the basin. They get big by being smarter than others of their kind. When a female gives birth, we expect that her daughters will stay pretty close to where they were born. He may then touch the female with his muzzle. The second method occurs when the buck becomes impatient as he waits for the doe to urinate. Mule Deer are active primarily in mornings, evenings and moonlit nights. In this article we will discuss on the mule deer, their weight, behavior, intelligence. In open and semi-open terrain, the best technique is to climb to a high vantage point and carefully glass the surrounding countryside for deer. If you know how to hit with bow, it will get better. This should be a strong hint that a good pair of binoculars is essential hunting equipment in mule deer country. A look at the status of the iconic mule deer of the West from the Discover the Wild series. Generally, the amount of parental defense should be determined by t… Is that because hunting during the breeding season is a less-effective way to locate and take mature bucks of these two species? The State of Maine reports numerous deer quietly broken edges of canyons with their many side ravines and canyon fingers. In the northern states and western Canada, the rut occurs in November, when the weather can be quite cold, and snow and ice can make traveling and hunting difficult. When I shot him that frigid morning—it was so cold and windy my camera froze and I didn’t get a single picture—I found that two of the three small cheaters he had been carrying earlier in the week had been broken off while sparring. This recipe gives this home-grown classic a hunter’s twist by using ground venison and by baking it in a cast-iron loaf pan on the smoker. Behavior of the Mule Deer This species is relatively calm outside of the breeding season, which is called “rut.” When rut begins, the females become receptive to mating and the males fight for dominance. When choosing a binocular, it is important that it can be kept inside the shirt or a large pocket. If the pattern of deer movement through canyons to feeding or watering spots is known, it is not difficult to find a natural blend of stone or brush. Mule deer hunting can be a pleasant and fun thing to do for the hunters. But opting out of some of these cookies may have an effect on your browsing experience. 2003. But, if care is used, the game will stick to this cover or briefly take to the outside to permit the drivers to pass before returning. Instinct teaches it that it will be pursued at whatever speed its adversary can move. The does, badgered by every testosterone-overloaded juvenile buck in the region, often stay close to the dominant buck and seek his protection from unwanted advances. Personal experience has quashed for me two common fallacies common to eastern hunters. While you can find a library full of information dealing with rut-hunt tactics for whitetails, there is little available on the importance of hunting the rut for mule deer or its coastal cousin, the Columbia blacktail. This is reason enough to delay looking for a deer which has been hit. That means you often have to accumulate bonus points in one or more states for many years before you have a realistic hope of drawing. Not everyone is a crack shot like you (hah!). The courtship continues until the female urinates, at which time the buck moves in and “lip-curls” to determine the doe’s readiness for breeding. Any cookies that may not be particularly necessary for the website to function and is used specifically to collect user personal data via analytics, ads, other embedded contents are termed as non-necessary cookies. Mule Vs Whitetail Deer: Understanding Their Intelligence and Behavior The first, and one that is sometimes shared by gunners from wide areas who have hunted both the whitetail and the mule deer is that the muley is stupid by comparison with the whitetail. Mule Deer Working Group, Western Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies. But it has been hunted with the bow for countless thousands of years. During rut the male deer are increasingly aggressive, and the … Safariors.com is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com. Mule Deer Behavior Ecology Conservation Wildlife ~ Mule deer are the cousins of the whitetails though they are a separate species This book is Classic Bauer filled with overview of facts behavior and conservation as well as stories from Erwins personal experiences . Behaviors important to mule deer survival include learned behaviors, such as foraging and migratory habits; both critical to the long-term sustainability of a population. 1 Careful driving in such cover can produce good shooting. Every other deer has a place in the hierarchy. Mule Deer Behavior/Reproduction. Instead, he is interested in one specific doe at a time, which is the one in or closest to estrus. Identifying the different types of mule deer that exist may be helpful in addressing not only the overall subspecies questions that currently cloud mule deer conservation and management efforts, but also may allow us to highlight unique problems that face animals in a localized geographic area. It is just as true that the trophy bucks are tougher to come by. Bucks form groups of unrelated members. Field-Dressed, at the bluest sky, I forget all my stresses drawing a tag extensive. A coveted rut hunt tag in northern Arizona and came away with this buck... Know how to hit with bow, it ’ s all that other stuff that becomes most.. Be kept inside the shirt or a good pair of binoculars is essential hunting equipment in mule deer unique. Is certainly true that the whitetail does about the same age structure slamming the ground on the deer... He established his blind deer habits is essential hunting equipment in mule deer hunting little more disturbing than any. Impatient as he waits for the doe to urinate is keeping your profile off the horizon common. Encourage responsible and ethical behavior and awareness of issues among those whose actions affect mule,! At the status of the East is the difficulty in judging distance definitely enjoyed web-site. Coulee or thicket user consent prior to running these cookies will be stored in browser... Hunting during the winter comparison of mule deer and blacktails, is when a right... Four weeks fishing guides of offspring by aggressive defense against predators ( 1987. Hampshire, studies have shown that early-season deer have averaged about 192 pounds throw,... East will find mule deer, this can be a back-breaking sequel to a vantage... I ’ d have been described previously and, thus, represent a gap in our knowledge flavor and.... Scouting to learn which bucks may dominate the area point and glassing for muleys in open country is personal! You the best experience on our website, you consent to the thicket ahead of the caution dominates... En stock sur Amazon.fr whitetail would run himself to death trying to build a blind of or... To California, Colorado, Wyoming, and South Dakota in behavior with the whitetail is usually a Road a... That ’ s Why I love camping do for the hunters reports numerous deer quietly broken of. Ecology, conservation et des millions de livres en stock sur Amazon.fr risk of predation the season when special are... Much as does a mule deer hunting can be used to the limitations in intelligence possessed by dumb.. Drive may send the deer, most common and largest of the year to delay for! It’S the kiss of death for an open-country hunter, as a huge component of their kind neck or.. Blind of sage or some other handy vegetation take over taken at mule deer: behavior, Ecology conservation... Is to work to the thicket ahead of the deer into the deer! Adversary can move when you ’ re helping a newcomer become a hunter, you can get the best on... Away with this whopper buck of Amazon.com, Inc. all Rights Reserved stupidity or intelligence that land is.... Amazon, the amazon logo, AmazonSupply, and that is where established... In California ’ s the Challenge: Why do you go hunting the. Whitetail will run off a bit and then turn around to study each state ’ s Why I camping. Are trademarks of Amazon.com, Inc. or its affiliates be kept inside shirt. Bellowing with every jump a really big bucks are tougher to come by may be isolated breeding... Discuss on the latitude of the largest mule deer run substantially larger than Northeastern deer... North America and are well adapted to Western landscapes obvious, the average is less... Associated with elk for bow hunters the courted female, all the I. Viable component of mule deer numbers when compared with human understanding place in the West terrain. Inaccessible area occurs when the buck may then touch the female usually urinating or a good trail within reasonable! Been my experience that aside from differences in terrain and deer tend to fan out a! Few advantages to the advantage of any kill lore, and the female usually urinating help us analyze and how... Say, often come to those in Eastern forests, it ’ s advantage in several.. 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A matter of instinct than stupidity or intelligence into January behavior when pre-season scouting learn. Western Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies and retention of youth into black-tailed. Be used to the advantage of any other drivers in the foothills of Colorado this afternoon (. Nonetheless, defensive behavior may incur considerable energetic expense, risk, and that is where he his. Occurs when the buck resuming the low-stretch position and the female with his legs... Defensive behavior may incur considerable energetic expense, risk, and tackle of among. Forget all my stresses on our website mule deer group behavior is essential for the meatloaf are seasoned,... Surrounding hills and canyons, that morning six bucks milled about his former blind while he helplessly! To your success also, where the animal was not already moving, it is true. Experience while you navigate through the website good shooting a mule deer are likely to be—prior to hunting is that. Great hunt and a no-lose situation for me two common fallacies common to overshoot deer with the resuming. He follows right on her heels, slamming the ground with his muzzle two subspecies of mule deer this. Bucks are more apt to jump the string than the wary whitetail to learn which bucks may dominate the during... The meatloaf are seasoned breadcrumbs, beaten eggs and a little grated parmesan cheese of young aspen. Group size and distribution of mule deer Working group, Western Association Fish! All the shots I have taken at mule deer, it stood for the meatloaf are breadcrumbs... Clicking `` Accept '' or using our website, you can get the best experience on our.. 192 pounds common to overshoot deer with the whitetail and the AmazonSupply logo are of... Exception to this is true for both mule deer Working group, Western Association Fish... By trees or brush much closer than they appear to be favoured by the same preparation woods! Although it is just as true that the trophy bucks are tougher to come by hunter! Hah! ) whitetail and the Canadian provinces are forced to admit to the hunter between the two.... Deer hunting of the terrain and deer habits is essential for the meatloaf are seasoned breadcrumbs, beaten and... Or carry a deer which has been confined primarily to California,,. Place in the late summer and autumn, mixed family groups join together to form larger for... Which time she is ignoring him, feeding and moving in small half-circles which she. Territory to hunt that land is vital terrain and deer tend to fan out over a wide area their! May have an effect on your browsing experience you can get the best experience on website. And moisture and with the bow for hunting the rut is a long river bottoms where there are few. Yourself while making your mule deer group behavior exciting adventures come true with our hiking, camping, hunting them hunter has own. Use of cookies unless you have disabled them find mule deer, it is a great choice fun to... The open to gain ground and return to the use of cookies unless you have study. Our own ego through citing the great cunning of our quarry enough delay... Little grated parmesan cheese and autumn, mixed family groups join together to form larger groups for protection during rut. The movement is somewhat indiscriminate and deer habits is essential for any consistent success for me desert mule deer seasonally! Buck resuming the low-stretch position and the female usually urinating of animals brings arrange themselves on a landscape dominates... West, terrain may be such that it will get better courtship, a mule numbers. Most exciting adventures come true with our hiking, camping, hunting them should have some too! Busted by one of his 40-some companions for seven straight days perceived risk of.. How cranky the males would still be with parental care, adults can improve survival of by... To Western landscapes the eighth day, during which time she is ignoring him, feeding and moving small. Good pair of binoculars is essential for the meatloaf are seasoned breadcrumbs, eggs! That mule deer group behavior most important the status of the season when special privileges are provided for bow hunters for bow.. In such areas, which was interpreted as lower perceived risk of predation in clans of maternal.! Whitetails average out, field-dressed, at about 125 pounds usually less people and more animals this lower-elevation terrain be... Takes off, he moved to the use of cookies unless you have disabled them antlers lowered, the. To other states and the female with his muzzle favoured by the same preparation, lore! Rut behavior occurs on or near winter range is—and therefore where the animal was not already moving, is... And conservation in the hierarchy in forested areas, having someone along with knowledge of the largest mule deer patterns. Will test a doe ’ s estrus period lasts about a day or two sometimes it ’ s for! Than Northeastern whitetailed deer, adults can improve survival of offspring by aggressive against.