Over the past few weeks we have been checking and moving cameras, trying to relocate the bucks as they begin new patterns. The number of buck photos has dropped; we believe this is from a couple factors.
First of all, some bucks have begun to shed their velvet and this causes them to break off the bachelor groups. You will still see bucks in groups, but as the season progresses, they will become less tolerable of each other. This time of the year at the end of antler growing season, the bucks also seem to become more nocturnal.
Another factor that has the buck numbers down is the food sources have changed or are in the process of changing. Here in Iowa, the soybeans are turning yellow and the acorns are dropping. Therefore, deer are leaving the bean fields and being drawn back into the timbers. The farmers are also starting to harvest corn (so early this year due to the drought), this will cause some bucks to relocate due to lack of cover.
Here are some of the bucks we were able to locate these past weeks.