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Deer Antlers and age

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Deer Antlers and age

Old 08-23-2004, 11:08 PM
  #1  
Nontypical Buck
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Default Deer Antlers and age

Me and my cousin was talking about shooting too young a deer, and I said that I'm not going to shoot at a little bitty antlerd buck and he said " Why not? You cant tell the age of a buck by his antler size. If a buck is a spike buck, he is going to be a spike buck all his life, or if hes a 4 pointer hes a 4 pointer all his life, or if hes an 8 pointer, hes an 8 pointer all his life. so i just shoot at anything that doesnt have spots." Is he full of crap or and I full of crap for thinking he's full of crap?
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Old 08-23-2004, 11:17 PM
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Default RE: Deer Antlers and age

I thinks he a little more full of crap. If you have a 12 pointer, its not going to start out as a 12 pointer. I would think all deer start as small bucks, spikes and little split 4's.
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Old 08-24-2004, 09:13 AM
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Default RE: Deer Antlers and age

The only accurate way to measure a deers age is by tooth wear. Body weight and antler size have to do with genetics and nutrition and yes age dose play some part in it but there are too many variables to say deer A is so many years old by either weight or antlers.

All deer will start out with small antlers. As the animal matures and with proper nutrition he will develope bigger racks in progressie years. Here's a great article on antler developement.

http://www.whitetailinstitute.com/in...s/mar04/8.html

Tell your friend he's full of it
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Old 08-24-2004, 09:25 AM
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Default RE: Deer Antlers and age

your friend is full of it and must also be living under a rock. Age, genetics, and nutrition determine the size of a bucks rack. A buck isn't the same size his entire life.
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Old 08-24-2004, 09:28 AM
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Default RE: Deer Antlers and age

Adams is right. A deer can only be aged by toothwear. Also, a deer's diet is very important in antler development. Here in Iowa they have great food supplies all year round. Therefore, some pretty young bucks have some pretty impressive antler growth. I just had film developed from a trail cam that has a 4 point that is as wide as his ears. I can't believe he is more than 2 1/2 years old though. His two G-2's are only an inch long, therefore I believe the energy for the rack went mainly into the main beam.
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Old 08-24-2004, 11:47 AM
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Default RE: Deer Antlers and age

Like mentioned above, your cousin is full of bad information and you shouldn't listen to him. You are far more correct.

A spike isn't always going to be a spike and a 4 pt will not always be a 4 pt. A deer, like an infant needs maturity and nutrition to grow. A spike or 4pt is just an immature deer and given his time to mature, adequate nutrition and a splash of genetics you can be looking at a record book animal in 3 to 4 yrs. A spike could simply be a result of a late birth, a nutrient inefficient doe because of a hard winter or genetics....BUT...given a chance, a spike will grow and he could, could be a record qualifing animal in several years. A whitetail isn't concidered mature until he's into his 4 or 5th year...that is an old deer in the wild simply because of situation. A penned deer can live into it's teens....so go tell your cousin to stop spreading misinformation and educate himself about the whitetail, it might do everyone in your camp, community, school a world of good...in whitetail management.
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Old 08-24-2004, 12:23 PM
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Default RE: Deer Antlers and age

Is he full of crap or and I full of crap for thinking he's full of crap?
Sorry your cousin is so full of crap his eyes are brown! He really needs to do some reading on whitetails, i am not going to put any advice everyone here has taken care of that.
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Old 08-24-2004, 05:46 PM
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Default RE: Deer Antlers and age

I think it has been said well in previous posts but just to add something. We have a 3 year old 6 pointer walking around one of the farms we hunt and he has always been a 6 pointer. He was a 6 in his first year, (meaning his first rack) he was a 6 last year and I got him on video this summer as a 6 again. This is unusual and not the norm. This to me is a deer with inferior genetics and we plan to remove him from the gene pool as soon as we can after the season opens. As already stated, most deer will start off as small rack bucks and grow larger each year. This 6 pointer is a really good 6 pointer, and who knows, he may grow into something a little bigger when he reaches his prime, but we don't want to wait that long and let him pass on his genes.
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