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How early do the big boys start talking?

 
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BuglesNGrunts
(73 posts)
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Jul-06-17, 
03:44 PM (MST)
"How early do the big boys start talking?"

So I was down scouting for deer and my BIL's elk tag this weekend and before sundown one night I had a group of bulls chatting back and forth with some cows in the timber below me out of sight.

My question is: What do you think was the situation?

I always thought that bugles were more of a rutting/warning type of activity. Less of a herd communication tactic seeing as the cows and bulls are typical fairly sequestered from each other during the summer months (aside from the really young bulls that hang out with their mothers for the first year or two).

I would love to hear a discussion as far as what you have all experienced in your days afield.

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  Table of Contents  

 Subject   Author   Message Date   ID 
 RE: How early ...  nvbones      Jul-06-17   1 
 RE: How early ...  257Tony      Jul-06-17   2 
  RE: How early ...  TerynItUp      Jul-06-17   3 
   RE: How early ...  BrianID      Jul-06-17   4 
    RE: How early ...  N_Corey      Jul-06-17   5 
     RE: How early ...  Stubaby      Jul-06-17   6 
     RE: How early ...  arns      Jul-06-17   7 
      RE: How early ...  mmwb      Jul-06-17   8 
  RE: How early ...  DW      Jul-06-17   9 
   RE: How early ...  hank4elk      Jul-07-17   10 
    RE: How early ...  HiMtnHntr      Jul-07-17   11 
 RE: How early ...  BuglesNGrun...      Jul-07-17   12 
 RE: How early ...  wapitiman      Jul-07-17   13 
 RE: How early ...  JustLite      Aug-12-17   14 
  RE: How early ...  k22hornet      Aug-14-17   15 

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nvbones
(307 posts)
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Jul-06-17, 
03:51 PM (MST)
1. "RE: How early do the big boys start talking?"

Whenever I've heard a bugle before August or so I usually chalk it up to some dummy out educating the elk. One year I was shed hunting in hells canyon and stumbled on a heard of around a hundred cows that had recently calved, the amount of vocalization between the cows and calves was amazing. Still have the recording on my phone too.

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257Tony
(3523 posts)
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Jul-06-17, 
03:57 PM (MST)
2. "RE: How early do the big boys start talking?"

I heard straight from a dwr biologist last year that on one large cwmu in central Utah, they had bulls actually breeding cows in July last year. Never seen it myself, but stranger things have happened.


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TerynItUp
(486 posts)
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Jul-06-17, 
04:34 PM (MST)
3. "RE: How early do the big boys start talking?"

I am no biologist so I cannot speak to why they do it, but, I have heard bugles while scouting in the summer months. I think it is more of a general vocalization in these scenarios than anything else and doubt it has anything to do with rut tendencies. Weirdest thing I ever witnessed was a cow bugling. Sounded like the neighbor kid messing around with his old man's grunt tube in the garage.

Hunt Hard. Shoot Straight. Kill Clean. Apologize to No One.

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BrianID
(968 posts)
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Jul-06-17, 
05:14 PM (MST)
4. "RE: How early do the big boys start talking?"

I've heard bulls bugle as early as June and as late as December. I'm sure they even occasionally bugle in the spring, I just haven't witnessed it yet. In my experience, the bugling starts around the end of August and dies off around mid to late October. Cow calls are common year round.

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N_Corey
(87 posts)
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Jul-06-17, 
09:28 PM (MST)
5. "RE: How early do the big boys start talking?"

I've seen a cow with a fresh calf in mid October so it was bred in march or April.

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Stubaby
(975 posts)
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Jul-06-17, 
09:39 PM (MST)
6. "RE: How early do the big boys start talking?"


Elk are social creatures. They talk 365.

Just some weeks more than others.

"That's a special feeling, Lloyd"

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arns
(99 posts)
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Jul-06-17, 
09:42 PM (MST)
7. "RE: How early do the big boys start talking?"

Like Brian said all times of the year.But I have never heard one grunt only during the rut.But maybe some guys have.

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mmwb
(2221 posts)
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Jul-06-17, 
10:16 PM (MST)
8. "RE: How early do the big boys start talking?"

They can bugle at any time. The occasional cow will bugle as well, though not really common.

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DW
(8585 posts)
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Jul-06-17, 
11:27 PM (MST)
9. "RE: How early do the big boys start talking?"

>I heard straight from a dwr
>biologist last year that on
>one large cwmu in central
>Utah, they had bulls actually
>breeding cows in July last
>year. Never seen it myself,
>but stranger things have happened.
>
>
>
>


Were there April calves?

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hank4elk
(1786 posts)
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Jul-07-17, 
06:56 AM (MST)
10. "RE: How early do the big boys start talking?"

Tried out a new cow call yesterday morn & had several cows respond & a full bugle with chuckles from a bull.
I've heard bugles at times in off seasons. Heard & seen cows bugle,if you want to call it that...as stated sounded like a kid.
Elk are very vocal social animules.

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HiMtnHntr
(1726 posts)
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Jul-07-17, 
08:31 AM (MST)
11. "RE: How early do the big boys start talking?"

I was hunting cow elk once in December in an area with lots of elk, lots of bulls, and there was a six point bull with a group of cows firing off bugles.

Also, in late summer scouting I've heard quite a few, mostly young bulls.

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BuglesNGrunts
(73 posts)
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Jul-07-17, 
01:52 PM (MST)
12. "RE: How early do the big boys start talking?"

I can guarantee that it wasn't someone trying out a call, my tracks were the only ones into and out of the area after a brief shower so the roads had been reset as far as tracks were concerned.

There were also no camps around so I think it was definitely animals. I guess I was just more surprised by it as I hadn't seen intermixed herds this early in the year before. I have definitely heard the cow herds communicating with each other and their calves, but never the back and forth between cows and bulls this early.

I love hearing about these anomalous situations, especially the accounts of breeding happening so early in the season. Were these by chance in areas that don't experience a traditional style of winter? Or were they in areas that have definitive summer/winter ranges?

Elk are weird!

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wapitiman
(40 posts)
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Jul-07-17, 
03:04 PM (MST)
13. "RE: How early do the big boys start talking?"

I've heard them being pretty playful in July as well before. Nothing too aggressive from what I've seen. Once things start to heat up rut wise I can definitely tell a difference in aggression. I've heard them being pretty playful in the November/December time frame as well.

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JustLite
(12 posts)
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Aug-12-17, 
02:22 PM (MST)
14. "RE: How early do the big boys start talking?"

They "talk" year round. Check out roehuntingresources.com if you want to know what those sounds mean.

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k22hornet
(69 posts)
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Aug-14-17, 
01:19 PM (MST)
15. "RE: How early do the big boys start talking?"

I think the bulls start to get antsy in mid-August and throw some bugles off on occasion.

I was in Yellowstone NP the first week of June many years ago and witnessed an elk tragedy. A cow elk was standing belly deep in a small stream while her calf was struggling to climb out of the water.

I had to pull over and run back to watch things unfold, and as I got there, the calf lost it's grip and started to slowly spin in the water, trying to keep it's head above water, and all the while, the cow is frantically running into and out of the water, bugling like crazy. After many bugles from her, I heard a bugle from another group of elk a few hundred yards away. No chuckles at the end, just straight whistling/bugling.

Up until that time, I had no idea that cow's were capable of bugling.

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