Overall Activity Status: Deer activity is generally picking up. Some bigger bucks are finally showing up. My scouting partner, Mike Stimmell, got a pretty good buck (by Allegheny National Forest standards) on his trail camera recently.


Fighting: No fighting reported yet, but it has probably started.

Rub Making: The first rubs were reported last week. But in most places there are no large numbers of rubs.

Scrape Making: There was a fresh scrape in my own area the first week of September, but since then I have seen none, and that first scrape has not been visited again, at least it does not appear to have been visited.

Chasing: No chasing has been reported, and none should be expected yet.

Daytime Movement: There was considerable daytime movement over the past week around the full moon on September 19. Since then daytime movement has waned, but is still happening.

Estrous Signs: No signs yet of does in heat. It is still too early for this.

X Factor: If you are hunting now, or just looking for deer, look for food sources. Here in northwest Pennsylvania, deer appear to have changed their movement patterns according to whatever foods they are focused on.

John Havlick, at Frank’s Gun & Tackle Shop near Gloversville, New York, saw bucks and does moving during the day last week, but since the full moon he has seen only does moving during the day. He also said that one of the deer he saw recently was a spike buck still in velvet.

Westley Marks, from Mark’s Sporting Goods in Cumberland, Maryland, also has seen no bucks moving since the full moon.

Neither Marks nor Havlick have seen scrapes or rubs yet. Havlick said he does not expect to see them until mid-October.

Outdoor writer Steve Carpenteri, in central Maine, has had 6-points, 8-points and 10-points hanging around, but he expects them to disappear once the leaves fall.