Bob sent this series of cam photos from Eastern Maryland taken about midnight on December 27, 2014. They confirm that in most parts of the nation whitetails do some breeding from mid-October through December/January.
The majority of the breeding takes place in early to mid-November, during the “peak rut,” and that is when most of the adult does are impregnated. But if a doe is not impregnated then, she’ll recycle into estrus some 28 days later, during a “late rut” that typically occurs in early December.
These pictures prove that there is a “third rut,” or at least some final sporadic breeding going on in late December. An adult doe that is somehow not impregnated during her first and second cycles will come into estrus a third time. And there is something else. By late December, some of the doe fawns that were born back in June are big and healthy enough to breed now…that is quite possibly what you see in these pictures.
The whitetail world is fascinating, and the more you learn about it the better hunter you will be.