Country Art Presents Michael Sieve's

Survival Series
Rule Number One - Wait 'Til Dark
First in the 6-print Survival Series

Michael Sieve's "Rule Nubmer One - Wait 'Til Dark" - First in the Battling Series

Rule Number One -- Wait 'Til Dark - In most areas of whitetail country, a mature buck may be the most elusive of trophies. Just seeing a heavy-antlered buck during daylight hours can be a daunting challenge. Spend a summer evening glassing a remote, protected field and you may spot a trophy buck emerge at woods edge as shadows lengthen. But as summer relents to the shorter days of autumn, older bucks grow increasingly reluctant to show themselves during daylight hours. Restricting their movements to the blackness of night, trophy bucks become ghostlike and invisible.
 Seasoned hunters are familiar with this phenomenon. We say "my buck has gone nocturnal," and our companions nod knowingly. It is among the whitetail hunter's most frustrating situation - large rubs continue to appear in hunting areas, scrapes are pawed out and freshened, tracks that could be left by only one buck taunt us - yet hours of hunting produce no sightings of the deer. We know the buck has fallen back on one of the whitetail's oldest and most trusted tricks: waiting until dark.
 Why do whitetails exhibit this behavior? Some say bucks "learn" from the bad experiences they encounter with hunters during daylight hours and "know" that hunting season is on. Others contend that nocturnal movement is a natural survival behavior of older deer, that autumn leaf fall exposes cover and makes bucks more nervous and wary. Whatever the reason, it can be argued that, of the survival rules a buck must follow, this is undoubtedly one of the most important. A trophy whitetail can disregard virtually every rule he's learned and, as long as he breaks those rules under cover of darkness, he will survive.

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