Keys to Rattling in a Mature Buck

There has been much written over the years as to when is the best time to rattle while deer hunting. The reality is that deer will respond to rattling throughout the season. There are however three primary periods that will generally produce the most action. These are the pre rut, peak rut, and post rut periods.

Pre Rut Rattling

During the pre rut period, bucks are switching from a feeding mind set to breeding mind set. Rattling during the pre rut can draw a variety of aged bucks. Young and middle aged deer will be drawn by curiosity. The older and mature bucks will respond out of an aggressive or more dominant behavior.

Peak Rut Rattling

Rattling during the peak rut period will often draw in the middle aged bucks. These bucks are simply trying to take advantage of nature. Mature bucks are already with and tending to receptive does. They are less likely to respond unless challenged. A less dominant buck will respond in an attempt to steal the doe from the fighting mature buck.

Post Rut Rattling

Rattling during the post rut period can produce quality middle aged bucks. But it can also draw in a mature buck that is searching for the last remaining receptive does to breed. This time period is often over looked by hunters. However, it can be one of the most effective times of the season for harvesting a mature buck.

Time Of Day

Rattling from an hour after sunrise up to about 11:00 am is probably going to be the best time of day. Late evening hours will be second. Midday hours will usually be least productive.

The key to successful rattling is focusing on these three primary periods of deer hunting.