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dgrad

Very Fat Buck

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Thanks Randall, I know what you have been through, and your mom will be at peace in a better place soon. Our thoughts are with you.

 

Well deer season ended Sunday at dark, and the last few days were very interesting. Saturday evening I baited my camera a half an hour before dark. After putting the food out, I walked up and turned the camera on. I always stay for walk test and watch the camera take a pic before I leave. When I turned around to pick up my buckets to leave, I saw a buck come out of the brush on the ridge across the way. I looked at the buck through my binoculars, and I saw it was the buck that runs with droptines So I sat down to watch and see what happens. Then I saw the buck was following two does and a fawn. Those deer were working their way down the ridge and heading over toward me and my set. These are the same deer that droptines always follows to my set, but he was nowhere around. Then I looked back up the ridge where I first saw the other buck and there he was. He was standing back in the brush watching the other deer make their was over to my set. All I could see was his neck, head and that big rack. I watched him for a couple of minutes until I heard a doe starting blowing higher up on the hill right above me. Buddy was right beside me while I was watching the deer, but when he heard that doe, he took off uphill. There was a bear coming down toward my set, and Buddy treed the bear and started barking. Droptines along with the other deer took off, and that was the end of that. My camera took this pic when I turned around and saw the first buck

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Edited by dgrad

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I started taking alfalfa to the set, and the deer love it, plus it keeps the apples from rolling downhill. Here are a few pics from later Saturday night after I got Buddy away from his treed bear.

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I am amazed at how he has changed since July. He was covered with scars back then. maybe all the food that I have packed up to him during the last 88 days has helped him get healthy. He's sure looking good. He is still packing that small piece of velvet, but it is barely hanging on now.

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Another

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Sunday, I went up to my neighbor's to see how their deer season was going. When I told him that I had seen droptines half an hour before dark Saturday night, he told me they all had their bucks. Then he told me that his twelve year old grand daughter still had her tag. He asked me if her dad could bring her down Sunday evening and sit and watch for this buck. That cute little girl was standing there looking at me with a big smile on her face, so how could I say no.

So they arrived at 5:00 PM, and I feed the deer at 6:00. I got my buckets of food, and we hiked up to the set. I showed them where I saw the buck on the ridge the night before. Paul checked it with his range finder and told me it was 168 yards. I told them to find a place to sit, and Buddy and I would go uphill and sit by the camera. And I told them I would walk down and dump the buckets of food at 6:00. I told them if I dump the food too early, the does and bears will start making their way here, and that will be the end of everything. Just before 6:00, I saw the large doe come out on the ridge where I saw the bucks the night before. I know that doe, she and her fawn were the only deer to come in with droptines back when this first started back in July. She lost her fawn a few weeks ago. My two hunters had sat down right out in the open next to the alfalfa where I dump the food. When I saw them do that, I knew that was a BIG mistake, but I am not a deer hunter, so what do I know. The doe stopped when she came out, and she was staring at the two hunters. I got up and walked down and dumped my buckets and then I left like I always do. I walked down the trail about 30 yards and found a place where I could sit and hide back in the brush. I wanted to watch and see what happened. The doe had not watched me leave, she was still watching the hunters. Then she just bedded down right there on the ridge still watching the hunters. She's been bedded down all day, and when she came out, she wanted to come on over to my set. But when she saw the hunters were not leaving, she just laid down and watched them. When I saw this, I knew there was no chance they would see that buck. I know those bucks were close somewhere behind , and when she bedded down, that was a signal to the bucks, "Stay back boys, there's danger over there." I have been watching droptines for almost three months this year. He always follows does, fawns and other bucks. He lets them go first to make sure the coast is clear. Then when he finally gets to the set, he takes it over. Then, if the other deer get too close to his food, he runs them off. Even at night, he uses the other deer to warn him when bears or cougars are around. He is a very smart buck, and it's been fun watching him this year. That doe was still there watching them at dark. But there was another doe with two fawns that came out lower on the ridge, and they did not see the hunters, and they were coming on over to the set. The two hunters were just getting up to leave when my camera took these two pics

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Edited by dgrad

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another pic

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The hunters walked away at 6:32, and the doe with her two fawns were there four minutes later.I think they might have had a chance to see that buck if they had hidden somewhere in the brush. But they thanked me and told me they had fun. I guess that is all that matters.

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My 9 volt battery that powers the Yeti board died after this pic, so I don't know when that doe and the bucks arrived last night. But all that food and hay was gone the next morning

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Always a great read/story. We've have a lot of fun following drop tines journey this year too. I agree, he fattened up quite a bit.

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Thanks Paul, Sometimes I wonder if I post too much about this buck. For every picture that I post, I have 100 or more that I didn't post. In the past, I always waited until the bears are gone in late October before I start making sets for him. So the journey is not over yet, it will continue until mid-December until he sheds his antlers. There are still two more late deer seasons that he has to survive, but those seasons are by special permit. And there will not be near as many hunters, plus no one that I know drew a tag for those late seasons

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I always check for updates on this great deer. I'm kind of rooting for him to die peacefully in his sleep. Although given the chance

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I will start a new thread later on and update what's going on, but for now here are a couple of pics from last night. I told my neighbor today what Paul and Isabelle did Sunday night,and how they sat down right out in the open clearing next to my pile of food. Then I told them, "When the deer come out, where do you think they are looking? And they are always looking to see if bears are over here."

They just laughed and agreed with me that they probably blew a good chance to see the buck. Thursday, he was at my camera by 6:40, and it was 6:12 when I saw him Saturday evening. Then Monday, he was just downhill below the camera at 6:35

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one more

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I'd hate to see him go and end the novel we've read all summer until now. He's grand and I would be more disappointed if someone killed him as he's

became a land owners pet.

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