How to Call a Roe Buck

Peter Jones offers some unconventional tips for calling in your Roe Buck this summer.  

Roe Buck Almanac - June

(Dont even think about calling until at least the 20th July)

With each passing year I find that my attempts at calling Roe Buck are improving as I learn to trust and apply my own methods and move further from the advice penned by so many authorities.

(If you'd like to watch a film in which we demonstrate How to Call a Roe Buck, follow this link: youtube)

With the 2013 Roe Rut fast approaching I thought it would be worth adding a few more lines to the thousands that have already been written!   

Each professional deer stalker will swear by his or her own technique and I am sure each technique has it’s merits. The following observations however are based on my own experiences of calling Roe Buck.  

I don’t want to go over old ground, I have penned lines on this matter before and there is heaps of information on the internet and indeed on this very site about Roe Calling. Simply put Roe Calling into the ‘County Deer Stalking’ Search box and you’ll bring up my old blogs on the matter.

What I wanted to do here is simply relay a couple of observation that I personally have found to be true, observations that have come from actually observing Roe Buck’s response to the call. 

Buttalo250Firstly, most advice will encourage you to execute your calls in a specific order, starting with the gentle ‘peep’ peep’ ‘peep’ progressing on to more drawn out ‘Peeeeeeep’ ‘peeeeeep’ before waiting a spell and giving it the ‘alarmed distress call’, which sounds more like a scream.

Well contrary to accepted advice I have found that Roe Buck do not appear to care in what order you apply these calls, it simply does not matter if you do not progress in the accepted format.  

The second thing I would say is; ‘give it some wellie!’ Be confident!

(Above the much favoured Buttalo Call)

It sounds so odd when you first shatter the silence of a particular piece of woodland. You feel as though it can’t possibly work, the sound appears so alien, and your inclination is to think that it will surely send all the animals in the vicinity scuttling for cover.

Trust in what you are doing, in my experience calling is not a subtle thing. Provided you are confident that your calls are about on the note, then let rip!

The next thing I would say is once you start calling keep at it. Keep very still and don’t quit an area for at least 20mins.

So what makes me say these things? Well I’ll give just one example of an incident last year that will illustrate both of these findings.

With less than an ideal evening in early August we noticed a young Roe Buck sat in long grass about 100 yards away. Being in a difficult spot we attempted to call him to a better position.

‘Peep’ ‘peep’ ‘peep’......at first he simply ignored the call. Truth is he looked completely knackered. I persisted and after some long minutes he begrudgingly looked our way under tired eyelids, not giving up I carried on, this time with several ‘Screams’ from the Buttalo, again he just looked over wearily at us as if completely un phased. Back to a random mixture of ‘peep’, ‘peeeeeep’ and screaming for several more minutes before at last he stood.

I followed this by alternating between screams and calls for another five minutes or so during which time he gradually, almost reluctantly made his way toward us in such a fashion as it at first made me question if this was not simply random good fortune! I can only describe this buck’s attitude as “do I really have too?”, “God, I suppose so....if I must”.

In the end we took this buck at just 25yds having been gradually drawing him in for at least the last fifteen minutes. If this had been a buck with further to come, at the speed he was making his way, it would have taken very much longer. It was the alternating between calls that seemed to keep him most motivated, added to which I simply didn’t let up from a sustained barrage of calling.

Of course this may be the exception not the rule and I have in the past had bucks charge in with just a few simple ‘peeps’ from the Buttalo, however it does illustrate a point, that persistence and time spent calling coupled with mixing the calls can have some great results, especially when weather conditions are far from perfect.

One final word of advice worth repeating, don’t start your calling too early in the season, my advice is don’t even take the call out with you until the 20th July in the South of England and several days later in the north of England and Scotland, you’ll only serve to wise the bucks up to your tactics. Whatever your technique thereafter, the very best of luck!

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