Did the moon phase play a major role in Danny’s shooting of the big 10-pointer “Spike” in Maryland last Friday?
Blogging about the hunt, Danny wrote:
Maryland bow opener was Sept 6–the morning after the new moon. The wind direction was supposed to be out of the NNE. I looked back through all the cam pictures I had, and it just so happened the last time we had a NNE wind was the morning after the new moon in August. Spike was at the location I call The Puddle on that very morning.
Danny hunted “The Puddle” on September 6 and saw some 18 deer moving at first light, including a bachelor herd of 12-15 bucks. He shot the 164-inch 10-pointer just after 6:30 a.m.
I refer you to the most recent study on the moon and its effects on whitetail movement, conducted by researchers at North Carolina State University (also see QDMA video below). They tracked GPS-collared deer throughout the four lunar phases, and analyzed text messages sent from those collars to determine when the does and bucks moved the most.
Referring to the New Moon, the researchers said: During this phase, the peak of deer activity is just after first light, and movement diminishes the remainder of the day and night (focus on morning hunts).
Danny did just that, even though I understand that getting to that Puddle stand is tricky in the morning. But he had hard evidence—many trail cam photos—of lots of deer, and the big buck, right there and active at daylight on the same wind and during the new moon phase to the day. He figured out a way to sneak in there without busting any deer, and he got the big buck.
Coincidence? Maybe, maybe not. It just might be the first confirmed BIG DEER kill as relates to this latest moon study. It will be interesting to see how the deer movement and buck kills play out on the other moon phases later this fall.