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Is anyone seeing any rubs or scrapes yet?

Two weeks ago I installed a scent dripper over a mock scrape about 15 yards in front of my stand(buck scent). This was my first time ever using a dripper, and I figured it was too early to start using it, but I thought "what-the-hell". A week later (Sept 22nd) I was dropping apples at my stand, and sure enough there was a real scrape next to my mock scrape, and only a few yards away I noticed a very fresh rub. I know that rubs usually start right about now, but the scrape seems really early to me.

What are your thoughts?
 

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I haven't seen any scrapes or rubs yet but I have only been to my area 3 times this year (last three weeks). I know that my hunting partner (who's almost 60) said he used to see them as early as August when the deer were thick. In '07 we hunted in Alberta at the end of October and were seeing lots of scrapes. So if there is competition then scrapes will appear earlier. I have never seen anything in NB that would compared to the amount of scrapes I say in Alberta.
 

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Only scrapes I'm seeing are last year's, which are nearly as good an indicator of bucks in an area as new scrapes. It's a bit too early for the bucks to be feeling large jolts of testosterone, enough to completely tear the ground apart with scrapes in an area. I think making a mock scrape and using a dripper and having a deer scrape near your mock is more of an instinctive move on a buck's part than an actual "hey I'm rutting" sign.

Usually by mid to late October the bucks will start to put down some scrapes, but mostly less serious than the ones you see in late October/November. I was into my area last week and pulled a trail cam. A nice 3 or 4 year old buck had just begun shedding his velvet. I also noticed a nice fresh rub in the same area. Most rubs you see this time of year or velvet-shedding rubs where the bucks are rubbing at the trees to strip the antlers of velvet. It's also a sign of slight increases in testosterone and helps the boys strengthen their neck muscles for later on.

I've been watching hunting videos all week, the fever is on.

FR
 

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Saw some rubs but no scapes yet. I imaging the rubs are as someone already mentioned, gettting the velvet off.
 
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