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  • lunar phases?

    don't know much about deer movement and moon phases...need to look into it, but just wanted to ask you guys what your thoughts were. What's best moon phase to hunt morning/evening?? Thanks in advance for the knowledge
    Post Link
    Hey check out this link it is from another post on this forum, a lot of good info on deer movement as far as lunar phases.

    Lunar Phases
    Deer Hunting in Southeast North Carolina
    Moon Phases and Deer Movement
    Here is a great artical taken from Here is the link to the article or you can read below:
    If you have ever questioned 'Lunar Phase' read this report for clarity.
    Moon Phases and Deer
    Many people hold the belief that moon phases are responsible for many important things talk to police officers or delivery room nurses. They will tell you people commit more crimes and high numbers of babies are born when the moon is full. Ask many hunters and they will tell you the same thing, but relate the moon phases to hunting deer. Deers' activities are tied in with lunar cycles, and as a hunter, this knowledge will come in handy. Deer will feed at certain times, move around at other times, use specific trails at distinct times. If the phase of the moon is noted, the next time that phase occurs, you will be sure to see the deer in the same place or doing the same thing. Knowing that deer will do activities because the moon is in a certain configuration, helps you tailor your movements or hunting schedules around that. For some people, getting used to the idea may be hard, because some people regard things like these as myths. But if you really stop and think about it, it does ring true. Most deer sightings occur during certain phases of the moon. Mark down the phase whenever you see deer, and you will convert your thinking into what every successful hunter already knows.

    Activity Cycles

    The real secret to understanding the Moon's effect on Earth's inhabitants is the fact that all living organisms great and small exhibit alternating cycles of rest and activity. These, in turn, are directly related to the Sun or Moon, or both.

    For example, humans have a circadian rhythm - we wake shortly after the sun rises, and we fall asleep after sundown. Nobody has to teach us this. Our bodies respond to changing light levels by producing the hormone melatonin that causes us to become drowsy and fall asleep. On the other hand, bats, owls and some species of snakes are nocturnal - they're on an after-dark activity schedule.

    And what about deer? The unique makeup of their light-gathering eyes and their weird four-part stomachs suggest they're neither circadian nor nocturnal. Some biologists classify whitetail deer as 'crepuscular,' or low-light creatures, but this is only partially true. Some nights herds of deer can be seen frolicking in fields, some nights they're nowhere to be found. Likewise sometimes deer are active during the day, and sometimes they're not. What gives? If you know where to look, you will notice a subtle rhythm to whitetail patterns involving the Moon. And this is what makes deer fairly predictable.

    Deer And The Moon

    It's important to note what happens when an organism gets out of its God-ordained rhythm: In a word, trouble. For instance, research from Harvard University involving 122,000 registered nurses dating back to 1976 revealed the perils of 'shift work.' Women who worked rotating shifts for six years or more experienced a 50 percent higher risk of heart disease.

    Deer are no different. With its four-chambered stomach, a deer is designed to feed quickly to minimize exposure to predation, then retreat for security cover to 'chew its cud.' Deer must feed rhythmically or the microorganisms living in the first chamber of their stomach, the rumen, will die. Without these microbes deer won't last long, because they won't be able to digest woody fibers and food matter high in cellulose. So deer, like other species on the planet, feed on a regular schedule. Again, this schedule literally rotates around the Moon.

    Each day, the Moon rises and travels across the sky above the horizon just like the sun, peaking at its midpoint before beginning to set. But unlike the sun the Moon rises a little later each day - about 51 minutes, on average. This makes tracking the Moon's comings and goings difficult and is largely responsible for keeping hunters in the dark over the years.

    But that's been changing. Hunting-only lunar charts conveniently convert the Moon's overhead and underfoot positions into times of day. This is helpful information because the Moon's 'overhead' position (and 12 1/2 hours later its 'underfoot' position) coincide with predictable feeding times each day. Anglers have long used this lunar lore successfully, and now hunters are finding similar correlations.

    How do we know this is fact and not folklore? Texas Tech University biologist Steve Demarais and whitetail management consultant Bob Zaiglin radio-collared 25 trophy bucks and monitored them from 1985 through 1987 in South Texas. The pair's extensive background enabled them to interpret and express their data in hunter-friendly terms, first published in the September 1991 issue of Buckmasters. Many insights were gleaned but one particularly stands out: Deer movements were most pronounced during the traditional hunting hours of dawn and dusk 'when there was a 1/4 to 3/4 Moon.' Further, the Moonless and Full Moon phases seemed to 'break this pattern down.'

    The key variable here is Moon position: Quarter-Moons peak overhead (and underfoot) during low-light periods of sunset and sunrise. Coincidentally, bucks use the reduced light as cover and are more comfortable with their surroundings during early and late 'Moon times' associated with these phases. This observation is substantiated with harvest data: Most deer registered at check stations throughout the nation are harvested during favorable morning and evening 'Moon times.' On the other hand, very few bucks are taken during Full Moons, largely because the Moon is directly underfoot during midday - a time when hunters are progammed into thinking they won't see many deer.

    Putting It All Together

    This may seem complicated but the implications are very simple. Many factors contribute to when and where deer will be active, but none are predictable ... except for the Moon. In other words, you can't count on temperature, wind, precipitation, hunting pressure (or lack of it) on any given day afield, but you can always count on the Moon to beam its coded message at predictable times. So before you head out, first find out when the Moon is overhead and when it's underfoot. Then concentrate your efforts in appropriate places at those special times.

    Briefly, you can intercept a deer in one of three locations: Where it beds, where it feeds, and the in-between zone of travel corridors connecting the two. Once you know when the moon peaks, you can constuct a sound game plan to put you in the right place. After all, being in the wrong place at the right time isn't any better than being in the wrong place at the wrong time! For this reason, be especially sensitive to early morning and late afternoon 'Moon times' that allow you to hunt food sources, since they're a lot easier to identify than bedding areas. Which is the main difficulty of midday 'Moon times': Deer will be bedded down when the Moon's urge to 'get up to feed' hits, and they won't venture far from security cover to feed. Moreover, if you attempt to set up near a field edge for an afternoon hunt, few deer will make before dark during this phase (remember, the next Moon time is at least several hours away).

    The more we learn about the Moon, the more we learn there's so much more to learn. Just recently, for example, we've compiled data that allows us to predict whitetail rutting dates. Naturally, the intervening variable that causes the rut to fall early some years and late others is - you guessed it - the Moon. No wonder the Moon has fired man's imagination over the centuries. Underestimating its profound influence is like looking through the telescope from the wrong end.
    full moon..
    Viper, traditionally hunting when the full moon is overhead most of the night SEEMS to be a bust becuase it seems the deer move and feed all night. how does the full moon affect their feeding habits during the days? Are they less likely to move a lot during the day, it just seems there is less movement during that time, or will they feed but not venture far from day time bedding areas? Article makes sense especially during secondary feeding times. sounds like I might need to have secondary stand locations without invading their bedding areas.
    1Hunter..if you study the movement of the moon accross the sky by looking at moon rise moonset times it's about half and half, as far as the moon being up at night. The New Moon cycle there is no visible moon at night. Deer need light to see. On darker nights they will feed less say at mid-night but, will feed late evening or early morning.
    Deer and most animals clock is the moon. From Major to Minor to Major to Minor there are roughly 6 hours in between. We humands are on 'mans clock' get up at 6am and go to bed at 9pm. Deer are not noctural as most people think but, they are very weary.
    When the moon is overhead or underfoot, these are the Major movement times. Are they going to be in the middle of a bean field when the moon is overhead at lunch time....depends on how isolated that field is. If they feel weary you won't see them but, they will be probably skirting around that same field in the woods, or feeding closer to their bedding areas.

    In my oppinion you don't want to find their bedding areas because if you leave scent there they will move and find another bedding area. Deer will typically use the same bedding area all year because they feel safe there. They will even have temporary day bedding areas. Investigate the most likely spot they bed and feed and set up on the travel corridor.

    Surprisingly a big bucks bedding area might be behind the old tobacco barn that's grown up with vines that everyone sees but never goes around! It's all a guessing game and lunar charts just help you narrow down when deer should be moving.

    Good luck. Her's a challenge to everyone and I do this year after year: on your big game report card
    write down the day and time of day you shot your deer. At the end of the season check all these times and dates to the lunar charts and you will see a pattern. Do I always shoot deer in the lunar! Are they mostly shot in the lunar windows....only about 80% of the time. Good enough for me!
    I remember my Grand-pa telling me when i was a kid that if you drive by a farm,ETC and the live-stock was just laying around during the day that it wasn't a Good Day to Hunt or Fish because the critters aint moving and the Fish aint Biting and Vise versa if everything was up and moving around...Me...I just Hunt every chance I get because I love to be in the outdoors...I have taken game at all times of the daylight....Was it the Moon? Could have been but alot of it has to do with me just being out there...Chasing my passion in the Great outdoors....Seems like some (Not All) Hunters are lazy these days...Just sitting around waiting on the Perfect Moon with the Perfect Wind to go set up over a Corn pile at the Perfect time.....Get out and Explore your options every chance you get....Make something happen....Take a Stroll and try a spot and Stalk...You have Nothing to loose and Memories to gain...Learn from your mistakes...That's Hunting in my Opinion...I never did hunt from a tree or use bait until I moved to NC and got caught up in it, I guess you could say...But thinking back....It sure seemed easier and more enjoyable back then with Grand-Pa
    'A bad day in the woods is better than your best day in the offi
    GT hit the nail on the head! As they say, 'A bad day in the woods is better than your best day in the office'. And honestly, if you're worried about the moon being underfoot due to the full moon this weekend, take GT's advice and do a stalk/still hunt. Plus, even if you don't happen to see anything, at least you're accomplishing another thing: scouting! Like Viper mentioned on a different post, this scouting can prove helpful now that the bucks are starting to shed their velvet. You'll be able to (hopefully) clearly see their walking trails, which in the end will give you a better chance of seeing game, especially if it coincides with the moon in the near future (dont forget, bucks will only be on this patternable schedule the next month or less, growing less and less each day there's pressure)! Good luck guys!
    Hunt the rut or does food plots
    Forget the moon phases; hunt the rut or does food plots.

    In the piedmont, where I am, the rut starts around Oct. 31 and lasts about 4 weeks with the peak the 2nd and 3rd weeks of November. I agree with other posters here, especially Viper4x: hunt waning moon with low light conditions in the a.m. and p.m. Deer should be moving. Bucks will be near does, so hunt food sources that pull in does. Do NOT set up on the food sources but back in the woods on a trail. How can you tell and entrance trail to a field from an exit trail? Look for buck rubs on tree trunks opposite the field side of the tree; the bucks will rub mostly coming to the field, not leaving it; so that's an entry way. Set up 30 or 40 yards off the field so you can see its edges. Check wind directions first. Never set up a stand with the wind blowing from the field toward a bedding area; you'll prolly get busted if you screw up that tip. Stay still and keep watching. No sudden movements in a stand and for goodness sake, don't drop anything, especially a glove or arrow, out of your tree stand.