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Make a Rub Line for The Rut

September 14, 2011
Make a Rub Line for The Rut - 4

If you haven't started making your mock scrapes, don't wait. Whitetails begin scraping soon after the velvet comes off and most velvet is disappearing as you read this blog. Mock scrapes create interest in an area and can even alter a whitetail's routine by forcing it to visit an area to maintain a scrape.

It's too bad you can't make a rub line and add it into the mock scrape mix, or can you? Yes, it takes a bit of sweat equity, but you can build a rub line. First, you need to consider what trees whitetail like to rub on the most. Studies have been done on this phenomena and it clearly shows that the more aromatic the tree, the higher likelihood a whitetail will rub on it. Apparently, like appealing cologne, whitetails like to carry the scent of forest on their body.

Dr. Grant Woods, one of the most respected wildlife biologists in the country, did a study in South Carolina on deer rubs. In short, he discovered that deer prefer to rub on aromatic species of trees, even if they were in short supply over rubbing randomly on any old tree.

So how do you mimic that detail? Head to Home Depot and shop for cedar fence posts. Cedar is one of the most aromatic timbers readily available to consumers. Purchase several posts and then head to a whitetail hotspot where you have a stand in place or envision a future ambush site.

Look for areas that traditionally support lots of rubbing activity before you place the posts. Edge corridors, heavily traveled trails to food and bedding cover, and interior bedding zones all sport lots of rubbing activity.

Finally, plant the posts in a row. You can space them in a line along a trail to create the illusion of buck activity or you can group them together and place a mock scrape or two in the mix for a party scene. Take into consideration your stand site and prevailing winds to ensure your invisibility at the site.

Regardless of your strategy, consider making a rub line this fall. The effort could just sucker another whitetail into your trap this season.

Comments (4)

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from DekeG wrote 2 years 23 weeks ago

Sorry guys but Mark is correct about cedar posts but the expert information you want is at www.cedarpostbuckrubs.com
I found the site this summer and tried to do it myself as Mark suggests but failed miserably. The bucks in my area had ZERO interest in a fence post from Home Depot. A fellow hunter from my neighborhood purchased a post from the website and harvested a nice buck with his bow. The most amazing thing about his post is that it was sawed in half by the end of the rut! I will not make the same mistake next season.

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from Catpool9 wrote 2 years 43 weeks ago

Mark,
did you fall out of your climber recently/, I seriously doubt a cedar post rub line will atract a deer at all, you may make a fresh rub line using live cedar trees that would be aromatic because of the sap and freshly broken up greenery, and at best that would only be a visiual because you need the preorbital scent gland from the deers forehead to produce a truely scent trail. I will stick to the real thing when it comes to rub lines.

David H.

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from 6phunter wrote 2 years 43 weeks ago

C'mon MARK , I think maybe I should set a bunch of old cedar post leading up to my butcher house.I once kept a fellow busy watching a bunch of trees I marked for him while I hunted,and while you might get some of the younger ones here running for thier post hole diggers I'LL BE SETTING up on a real rub line. HOW ABOUT THIS FOR A LITTLE THOUGHT. DEER have a scent canal between thier hooves filled with tiny hairs, can thet feel the ground vibrate better and use as a hearing source?

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from Casey Walker wrote 2 years 44 weeks ago

Some of the nastiest rubs I see out here in Western Nebreska are on old cedar posts in fence rows along corn and winter wheat fields. They work the posts over enough to almost cut them in half. Same posts year after year. Great places for me to put up trail cameras.

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from 6phunter wrote 2 years 43 weeks ago

C'mon MARK , I think maybe I should set a bunch of old cedar post leading up to my butcher house.I once kept a fellow busy watching a bunch of trees I marked for him while I hunted,and while you might get some of the younger ones here running for thier post hole diggers I'LL BE SETTING up on a real rub line. HOW ABOUT THIS FOR A LITTLE THOUGHT. DEER have a scent canal between thier hooves filled with tiny hairs, can thet feel the ground vibrate better and use as a hearing source?

+4 Good Comment? | | Report
from Casey Walker wrote 2 years 44 weeks ago

Some of the nastiest rubs I see out here in Western Nebreska are on old cedar posts in fence rows along corn and winter wheat fields. They work the posts over enough to almost cut them in half. Same posts year after year. Great places for me to put up trail cameras.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Catpool9 wrote 2 years 43 weeks ago

Mark,
did you fall out of your climber recently/, I seriously doubt a cedar post rub line will atract a deer at all, you may make a fresh rub line using live cedar trees that would be aromatic because of the sap and freshly broken up greenery, and at best that would only be a visiual because you need the preorbital scent gland from the deers forehead to produce a truely scent trail. I will stick to the real thing when it comes to rub lines.

David H.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from DekeG wrote 2 years 23 weeks ago

Sorry guys but Mark is correct about cedar posts but the expert information you want is at www.cedarpostbuckrubs.com
I found the site this summer and tried to do it myself as Mark suggests but failed miserably. The bucks in my area had ZERO interest in a fence post from Home Depot. A fellow hunter from my neighborhood purchased a post from the website and harvested a nice buck with his bow. The most amazing thing about his post is that it was sawed in half by the end of the rut! I will not make the same mistake next season.

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