He's what I would call WOW. That's a BIG OLD deer. Its a summer pic so he's not got his rutting weight on but he is big anyway. Big ole sway back. Fat ole belly that drags on the ground almost. I'm guessing that deer is at least 5 and I would say he was 6 years old. The number of inches ??? no way to tell being in velvet but it would be enough for me.
A tooth is a way to get a positive age. By looking at different things on the live deer you can get a good idea how old it is. Its like looking and a 11year old, a 22 year old, a 30 year old, and a 50 year old human male. there are books out there to help you tell the difference and I'm sure there are magazine articles as well. The 1.5 buck looks like a doe with horns. little short face and slight all over. The 2.5 looks like a big doe and is a little front end heavy, with a longer face. the 3.5 looks like an athlete or a race horse, straight back thinner at the belly than the chest. the 4.5 gets the pot belly and the legs look short, the 5.5 has that sway back and big sagging belly and their face comes right out of their necks. the over the hill deer 7.5 and older just look gaunt. assuming all the deer are hard horned and before the rut.
How did I do guys and gals? did I get it about right?
I think you summed it up really well Ronn... Good Posting...
I also hope "Edgecrusher" doesn't mind I did a little edit too..
I think this is a typical 8 pointer in velvet in this pic, I'm not so sure it's going to score as well as EastTexasDroptine thinks it might, once he loses the velvet and the antlers harden and shrink, I think it's going to score in around 130. I also think it's currently only about 5 years old. (5.5 this season) that's just my opinion, the body is still a good solid muscular frame and he's just starting to develop the sagging belly Ronn mentioned. another thing I notice is the peaking shoulders sloping down to the neck, I'm sure he's seen a couple good heavy ruts with that neck swelling and shrinking.
All in All it's a great buck I wish you loads of luck pursuing him...
I was just watching QDMA and they said virtually everything you said......like looking at a 1.5 year old deer is like a teenager......Bucks also have the biggest "antler jump" in terms of size from ages 3.5 yrs to 4.5 yrs.
ronn thats a good posting. Also, with really good food supply like here in Ohio bucks can carry a real good rack 6-8 years then start the big fall off, providing their not on a wall. I just watched a show that spent a good deal of time showing bucks and how they age in physical appearance. After the 4.5 age they really fill out and have that box car look, solid head to tail.
Thanks. A good reason for nutrition plots. I read or saw somewhere that those 180"+ deer that we see taken in IL. on TV are predominantly 3.5 years old. just imagine what a couple more years on them could do.
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