Title:  Tracking a Booner Under the Bayou State Moon
Author(s): David W. Moreland - Outdoor Roots
Year: 2013
Abstract: On a 1200 acre tract of land in Desoto Parish, Louisiana, the feeding activity of a free ranging adult buck was documented using trail cameras at feeding stations. The buck was a 140 class B&C ten point buck in 2010, a 170 class B&C thirteen point buck in 2011 and a 160 class B&C eleven point buck in 2012. This tract of land is not hunted but hunting occurs all around it. In 2011 the buck fed regular at several feeders beginning in mid-October and then disappeared for two weeks, reappeared for a week at the feeders and then disappeared again for three weeks, returning in late December. The effect of the moon on breeding activity of whitetail deer is a controversial subject among southeast deer biologists. The disappearance of the buck appears to coincide with the moon phases; the buck was absent at the feeders from the new moon through the full moon and then back at the feeders for the last quarter. The time it was absent from the feeders coincides with the breeding chronology of deer in northwest LA during 2011. Data for 2012 feeding activity will be presented at the meeting. The range of this buck supports the smaller home ranges for Louisiana deer as determined from recent telemetry studies. There are other lessons that both managers and hunters can glean from the feeding activity of this trophy class buck.

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