Have you ever wondered, while bowhunting deer in October, what happened to all the deer that you were seeing in early October? After about the first ten days in October the deer that you were seeing have disappeared. Why you ask? There are a few reasons for this, but first I need to tell you that an average deer eats about 8 to 11 pounds of food each day and about 1 ½ to 2 tons of food each year. Most of their food comes from the natural food sources, such as; acorns, leaves, pine needles, wild berries and lichens. This is a key to pinpointing deer movements during the slow times in middle October. 60% of a deer’s diet comes from natural food, which most hunters forget about and never learn how to identify when deer crave these natural foods. In the Northern forests, lichens become a favorite food source in mid to late autumn when the white oak acorns start to fall, which deer prefer over red oak acorns until all the white oak acorns have been eaten. Then the deer move to the red oaks to feast on their acorns.
Probably, most hunters in early October are hunting areas that are hand planted by man and the deer will learn this by hunters leaving tell tale signs like their scent or sightings. Deer will then start feeding nearer their bedding grounds on natural foods. Deer need to feed about every four hours allowing their four stomachs to regurgitate and predigest their food. This time of the year (early to mid-Oct.) is the best time to take a doe. The reason behind this is, does are not as skittish as later on when they are wise to the hunter, and if you are successful in harvesting one at this time you can check or study the contents of the food in their stomach. Studying their contents will explain what types of food they are eating and where you need to be while bowhunting deer at this time of the year.
Bucks are starting to become more competitive at this time also. I have found that calling with a grunt call or a bleater can is very effective while bowhunting now. Also, you may rattle antlers by doing so lightly. The younger bucks are trying to figure out their dominance and how well they rank in that particular part of their home front. This causes the bigger bucks to be curious and to check out who is in their neck of the woods.
Learning what deer eat when deer seem to disappear in mid-Oct. will definitely help your chances of being successful during your bowhunting deer season. Three things to investigate are; where do they bed, what are they feeding on and where are they moving to and from during daylight hours. Your sightings of deer during the lull of mid-Oct. bowhunting deer season will improve when you learn the invisible menu of the Whitetail’s diet. Enhance your chances!Check here for reviews on the Best Rifle Scopes