Overall Activity Status: That cool, autumn-like weather we’ve enjoyed all summer has faded just in time for opening day of bow season (Sept. 7 in Kentucky). The forecast is for 90-degree highs all weekend. I guess that’s the way she goes. No doubt, we’ve settled into a much more seasonal weather pattern in these parts over the past week. It’s been hot, and somebody has shut off the rain spigot. Deer, even by young bucks and does, have responded accordingly with limited daylight movement. Most of the photos from my trail camera pulled early this week were taken at night.
Fighting: None yet. Most bucks are still in full velvet, although they should be shedding soon. Expect bachelor groups, like the crowd of young bucks in this photo taken early last week, to hang tight for at least another few weeks.
Rub making: Nothing yet, although an early rub could pop up at any time once the velvet is shed. As we say here every year, a September rub line, should you find one, is a great spot to kill a big buck early in the season.
Scrape making: Nothing yet.
Chasing: Nothing yet.
Daytime movement: As mentioned, daylight movement has slowed down since the warm-up, but deer have still been on their feet for the first and last half hours of daylight. The bucks in the photo here stepped into the field at the very end of legal shooting light. An impending cold front late next week will hopefully put a spark into the activity.
Estrous signs: None yet.
X Factor: White oak acorns are already falling (I found the handful in the photo just the other day), and a few area farmers are shelling corn as we speak. No two food-source changes have a more dramatic effect on deer movement. If you have permission to hunt over a corn field, keep in close touch with the farmer right now. Plan to hunt as soon as you can once the corn is picked.