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Rut: Spectacular Fall Ritual of North American Horned and Antlered Animals

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Rut: Spectacular Fall Ritual of North American Horned and Antlered Animals

by Ron Spomer

About this title: Nature enthusiasts know rut is a three-letter word for sex and aggressive action. The fall phenomenon, occurring when North American horned and antlered animals are at their physical prime, features dramatic and dangerous fights, chasing, scent marking, and rubbing. It is the time of year when the thrilling whistle of a bull elk sweeps across the canyon; when lovesick bull moose curiously court dairy cows, and bighorn rams collide with one another with the combined force of 2400 foot-pounds. A hundred exciting color photographs vividly illustrate this spectacular fall ritual and author Ron Spomer's descriptive text explains the origins and reasons for this fascinating, seemingly bizarre behavior. For example, why do whitetail bucks tryst with one doe at a time while elk bulls wear themselves thin servicing a harem? Why, after the rut, do mule deer bucks cast their antlers and assume the identity of does? The Rut investigates and answers these questions and more about these compelling animal rituals, including rutting tactics as well as describing how terrain, habitat, climate and other factors combine to shape each species' specific strategy for perpetuating itself.

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