Rut time | Food

It's RUT time

It's the time which has made deer famous. It is when we can hear their incredible cry. It resounds throughout the forest from the end of September (second fortnight) to the beginning of October.
There are different rut cries. Here are descriptions, you can listen to them clicking on the picture:

  • Presence cry: short and brief, it is, in fact only a deep and rough belch click to listen
  • Languishing cry: long, lonely and gloomy (ouh oh oh oh)click to listen
  • Defiance cry: high tone provocation (ho ho ho oh), click to listen
  • Pursuit cry: staccato cry emitted when the buck runs behind the doe (heu heu heu ...) click to listen
  • Triumph cry: powerful cry of the winner of the fight. click to listen

  • Love is in the air and the young, maverick deer set off for adventure, forgetting all instinct to claim females.

    The old males jealously guard their herd to ensure that they reinstated. In addition, they attempt to attract females of nearby herds. These herds can reach 30 head at a time. They have much to do day-in and day-out: supervising females mating with willing females, discouraging young males from stealing females who have strayed from the herd. These mavericks can become insistant in which combat may be unavoidable.

    The old males are experienced enough in maneuvres of intimidation. The sound of antlers knocking against each other resounds in the forest. It is not a fight to the death but from time to time one of the fighters can be mortally wounded. It can also happen that two deer get their antlers locked together and die from exhaustion.

    It is not rare to see deer during rut time with grass tufts hanging from their antlers. Excitement makes them plough grass with great thrusts of their antlers.

    The fertility period for doe is very short, less than one day. Bucks, on the other hand, have a mating faculty for almost a month.

    This is physically trying period for deer. They eat very little and have no respite : fight,mate, surveillance ... They can lose up to 20 kg. The young males have many opportunities to find a doe at the end of the rut when old deer are exhausted and cannot keep an eye on their herd.

    At the end of the rut, exhausted males recover and prepare themselves for the winter period. Their occupation then become eating and sleeping !


    Nature has a plan. At this period, food sources are very rich : acorns, chestnuts...