“In like a lion, out like a lamb” is often used to describe March weather.  For deer, October could be described as “in like a lamb, out like a lion” with regard to breeding behavior.   It starts out slow but by the end of the month, things are roaring. At least for males.

Females are a slightly different story. Their goal this time of year – EAT.  As much as possible. 

Especially females with fawns – they need to make up for their huge energy expenditures (in the form of lactation) over the summer.  Just this past week I was watching a doe and fawn.  That little milk vampire was still trying to nurse. It didn’t last long.  Mom promptly put an end to junior’s free meal.

Females need to eat.  And it’s raining acorns.  Perhaps an October Lull?

The graph below shows hourly movements prior to October 1, 2017 (in yellow) and during the first three weeks of October (black). We have a lot more data on females and these data represent averages of 14-24 females per week.

The graph suggests slightly less movements during October than September.

October lull-females-G1

What is even more interesting is that movements don’t change that much during the rut.

October lull-females-G2

We’ve written about this before. During the rut, bucks are looking for females.  If you’re a female, you want to be found.  The best strategy – stay put!

Even home range sizes reflect this female behavior.  During the rut home range size of females is no larger than during October.

-Duane Diefenbach

Read previous posts on this topic:

October Lull – Take 2

October Lull

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