Rutting whitetail bucks sure aren't dumb. This cool video shows an eight-point making a wise move.
The first week of November is a magical time in the whitetail world. Here in Ontario, Canada, bucks have been making their rounds: working rubs, freshening scrapes, and chasing down does. But even a rutting buck isn't a dumb one, and knowing when to concede and simply walk away is still ingrained in their genetics.
I filmed the following footage while out checking trail cameras on November 7. Knowing a particular buck (who I have named "One-Side") likes to work his way down into the cut sorghum field at last light, I set up on the edge to wait with camera in hand.
A number of does and fawns were feeding in the middle of the field, and it wasn't long before a new buck, a decent eight-point, showed up on the scene. I set the camera to record and sat back to take in the action. That's when things got interesting.
As you just saw, the eight-point knew something was up. Those nervous glances over his shoulder tell the story. And as he worked his way toward me, stopping briefly at a popular scrape and licking branch, he realized tonight was not a good one to knock antlers with a big boy.
Who can blame this "lesser" buck? The sweet 11-pointer, with a split G2 on the right and a split brow on the left, looks like he could hold his own in a fight, and then some. A schoolyard scrap was not about to happen on this night.
As light faded and I bid farewell, both bucks were staring intently at the does from a distance. Would some action ensue on this night? Your guess is as good as mine.
For those wondering, this is public land that is off limits to hunting. It's a spot for me to study, photograph, and film whitetail deer. And with the rut just heating up, the buck interactions are just going to get better.
To see more whitetail deer photography, check out Justin's stock photography site here.
Photos Courtesy of Justin Hoffman