Idaho mule deer guide story continued……

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Continuing on with the story by Idaho mule deer guide Larry Hatter, published in 2015 issue of Horns and Hooks magazine…….

Once I’d acquired my position overlooking the canyon it didn’t take me long to find my first subjects.  Down a steep grassy slope, some three hundred yards distant, a group of six does filed uniformly out of a brush choked gully and began to feed.  Soon followed three gangly fork-horned bucks, most likely last season’s fawns.  Mule deer are even more of a herd animal than the whitetail.  Most of these herds are comprised of two if not three generations of mothers and their offspring.  These groups maintain their genetic diversity when a mature buck leaves his secluded autumn nest in search of female companionship.  Some bucks spend most of the year within a mile or two of their preferred mating haunts and some travel great distances every fall to satisfy nature’s most basic urge.
I surmised there wasn’t a dominant buck with this group as he would never allow these three amateurs to run his herd.  So I turned my attention from the small band and proceeded to methodically scan the other open ridges at my disposal for distant deer outlines or telltale mule deer butts.  I always make it a habit, first thing in the morning, to concentrate on open areas deer like to feed and if that turns up nothing, then I’ll begin dissecting draws and other spots with heavy cover where deer prefer to bed.  As the hours passed, I turned up several other herds, a handful of singles and even for a moment thought I’d found a shooter.  After closer inspection however,  I discerned that it was only a fairly wide and tall three point.  He was handsome for a youngster but at this point in the hunt I wasn’t overly tempted.  A good buck would be coming for the does I’d seen this morning soon enough……

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