Scouting Deer 2016: Early July

Robert Hoague
Robert Hoague

July is a big deal in my deer photographer and bowhunter life. Changes are already happening to the local whitetail bucks on the scores of farms and ranches in the areas mixture of oak trees of all sizes and types, ceder breaks, mesquite trees and winding river bottoms with a network of dry creeks. Combines are either done or finishing up the harvesting of farm crops like Milo, Wheat, Sudan and even seed corn.

This year’s rainfall was more than average. Our river flooded out of the banks off and on for most of a month bringing water to the river’s network of normally dry creeks. So the deer herd should be in excellent shape this year. The first picture of a buck with a promising rack (below) was on one of my game cameras on July 2. He is in the bottom left corner of the picture. The picture is blurry but the importance of it, to me, is that he is in my immediate area. And chances are good more will follow.


Two days later on July 4 this buck walked in front of my camera. It’s difficult to tell if he is the same buck as the one above. But my guess is that he is a different buck.

Here’s a night time game camera picture of a distinctive doe with cuts and maybe bites in its right ear.

Here is a picture I took on July 10. Notice the enlarged area on the tips of his main beams as well as his tines. As long as those enlarged areas are on the tips of his tines they will grow longer. Ditto for his two main beams, they will continue to grow,too.