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sticknbiggens
02-28-2012, 10:24 PM
Do you plan your bow hunts around the moon phase? Do you think it is better hunting on a full moon or a new moon or does it make a difference? I prefer the new moon to hunt. Seems like I've seen much more daytime (early morning/late afternoon)movement during the five days before & the five days after a new moon. Elk will feed through the night & be back in the timber during the daylight hours during the full moon phase.They are still there, they just don't stay out as late in the am or come out as early in the pm. I guess the next question would be, how much influence does the moon have on the rut?

RUTTIN
02-29-2012, 07:18 AM
In the areas I hunt, it seems the elk play all night long when there is a full moon. They don't seem as eager to bugle during daylight hours either.

Ikeepitcold
02-29-2012, 01:20 PM
I always plan my hunts if I can around the darkest nights. I really dislike the moon to be more the half. I do this so the deer and elk will be out feeding more in the daylite hrs and have more of a chance to spot them up moving. I would think if your hunting in the rut it probably doesn't matter since they will be up chasing the lady's constantly.

BKC
02-29-2012, 01:53 PM
I think that if I had a choice I would choose to hunt the rut w/ as little moon as possible. The nice thing about hunting the new moon ( no moon) is you can walk in on your game in the dark, if you want to get up that early. I'm not sure they do many things differently during the moon phases if they are rutting. I dont think the moon can turn the rut on or off, I think it is more the weather and cows in heat. I am talking more about the elk rut than deer rut.

Montana
02-29-2012, 07:48 PM
I plan my annual deer season 3 days before and 3 days after the full moon in November. And it never fails, for me or my partners, elk seem to be the exact opposite and I agree every bit with the above posts for elk.

This years full moon is very late in November, the latest I have ever remember seeing. It will be interesting... i am calling it now.... Late rut for deer this fall.

trophyhill
03-01-2012, 12:19 PM
the moon phase affects hunters phsychy more than it affects elk behavior imho. elk are elk and do what they do. we just have to be good enough hunters to adapt to daily changes taking place around us. whether that is the moon phase or the weather or whatever affects us and the animals. the way i see it is i can't kill them from the couch. full moon or new moon :)

bz_711
03-01-2012, 02:38 PM
the moon phase affects hunters phsychy more than it affects elk behavior imho. elk are elk and do what they do. we just have to be good enough hunters to adapt to daily changes taking place around us. whether that is the moon phase or the weather or whatever affects us and the animals. the way i see it is i can't kill them from the couch. full moon or new moon :)

I agree...not sure if there's anything to it or if it's just mentally for me - I like to hunt during the dark nights more (both Elk and whitetail)...regardless of moon phase, I pay attention to moon rise/set more and when totally dark for those 6-8 hours leading up to sunrise, morning hunts seem to have a little more action.
But again, I will hunt whenever time allows...

jay
03-02-2012, 08:08 AM
I think everyone is right on!!! I think whether there is a full moon or not, these animals are mostly nocturnal. Of course the full moon lends to these animals being more active because there is more light, especially with snow. I like to hunt around the full moon myself but like others have said, am not sure if it matters. Just adjust to the conditions like trophyhill said and CONQUER!!!!

CheyenneElk
03-06-2012, 04:01 PM
I recently reviewed my notes from the last 4 or 5 years and we've hunted very close to full moon the first week of Sept most of those years. Generally speaking, we did better after the full moon than we did before, but it is really hard to say. In 2009, the full moon was Sept 4th, and we killed bulls on the 9th and 10th. The moon was still big. On the 10th, we had 7 bulls bugling back in a small canyon. We were in this canyon to carry out the bull we killed the previous evening and thought we would bugle just to see what was what...holy bejebers!

I agree that the full moon is a human concern, not an elk concern.

Drelk
03-06-2012, 05:33 PM
IMO the moon does play a key role for my archery elk hunts and influences elk behavior. No scientific reason just my experience. This year the 8-15 of september will be my get it done time.

trophyhill
03-07-2012, 09:47 AM
I recently reviewed my notes from the last 4 or 5 years and we've hunted very close to full moon the first week of Sept most of those years. Generally speaking, we did better after the full moon than we did before, but it is really hard to say. In 2009, the full moon was Sept 4th, and we killed bulls on the 9th and 10th. The moon was still big. On the 10th, we had 7 bulls bugling back in a small canyon. We were in this canyon to carry out the bull we killed the previous evening and thought we would bugle just to see what was what...holy bejebers!

I agree that the full moon is a human concern, not an elk concern.

if you think about it, the 10th is right about time for that 2nd estrus cycle and a great time to be in the elkwoods as more bulls are actively seeking cows. by this time even the smaller raghorns and satellites have shed their velvet and are on the hunt.

wolftalonID
03-07-2012, 12:46 PM
Well here in Idaho where I hunt, primarily archery hunts, moon phases do have an effect on their daytime movements. When you go out early September, the moon is usually high and bright at night. You will hear all sorts of elk calls all night long. Then as soon as the sun begins to rise and day breaks they get very very quiet. They are there and still move, but talk much much less. This can make it very difficult to find them if your not already on top of where they are.
The third week of September here is when the moon begins to head into the new moon phase. As the week progresses, the elk will talk longer into the morning hours, and really helps to locate them early morning. The rut itself also tends to follow this part of the month and their rut drive is increasing. Hunting during the peak of the rut has proven time and time again to produce the best advantages of calling and attracting the elk into range.
Does moon phase have an effect? I think yes, as it helps to time the rut peaks here where I hunt. Historically reference to the elks rut, it follows the moon phases exactly.

sticknbiggens
03-07-2012, 01:17 PM
IMO the moon does play a key role for my archery elk hunts and influences elk behavior. No scientific reason just my experience. This year the 8-15 of september will be my get it done time.

I'm with ya on this one. This will be my first year pushing elk camp back by a week. I try to get out of there before all the deer hunters show up every year. The last two years just haven't felt right though. Seems like the weather has been warm and Ijust haven't been able to put the puzzle together. Good luck to you all this year!