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Old September 26, 2009, 06:27 PM   #1
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Join Date: February 27, 2009
Location: NC Foothills
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Lunar Tables: I don't get It?

Tuesday evening, I was on 12 deer in three different groups within 1 1/2 hrs. Taking the 3-4 day return into effect, they should be out in the beanfield behind my house right now. Nada. Well, there are two spotted fawns eating beside my stand. They have lived in a 400 yard radius of my house all year. Tonight is the beginning of the Waxing Moon on my lunar chart. What is that suppose to mean? Will all this adverse weather affect lunar behavior as well?

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Old September 27, 2009, 05:14 AM   #2
Double Naught Spy
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Join Date: January 8, 2001
Location: Forestburg, Montague Cnty, TX
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Contrary to what many believe or have experienced, deer (and hogs for that matter) don't necessarily operate according to the lunar cycle. We run several game cameras on my property and have found no specific trends with their behavior and the lunar cycle. I compare my deer pics with pics from a buddy's property up the road. Aside from sharing some of the exact same deer between the properties (which is pretty cool), we get some of the same patterns.
A study here notes that deer behavior is affected by lunar cycles, but note the language is in what the deer tend to do. The influence of lighting is there, but moon phases do not determine what given deer will or will not do. By comparison, ducks tend to fly south for the winter, but certainly not all ducks fly south and not all ducks fly as far south as other duck. Here in Texas, some ducks fly south too Texas while other ducks fly south from Texas. Some just stay year 'round.

What I find even more interesting is that the deer seem to go to ground for several days at a time a few times a year. Occasionally, it will only be the bucks that all but disappear, or at least the older bucks.

Another guy we associate with has a 1 section high fenced plot of land where he manages deer. Most/all of the deer are effectively trapped in the property. Like us, he has deer that go to ground and he may end up with almost no deer showing up on his cams for days at a time as well.

These go to ground episodes are not tied to any particular moon phase. They are a pattern of behavior that appears to be influenced by something other than {just?} a lunar pattern. Keep in mind that lunar patterns do not determine deer movement. They may influence it, but not determine. If you don't have deer in your bean field on a given night, but did the previous night, don't look to the moon the be the absolute cause of that, especially on back-to-back nights where the difference in moon lighting is not great.

What is a waxing moon? It means the amount of reflected light to the earth is increasing. Last night was NOT the beginning of a waxing moon, however. That started with the first reflected light after no moon.
"If you look through your scope and see your shoe, aim higher." -- said to me by my 11 year old daughter before going out for hogs 8/13/2011
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