Age and scores please

Discussion in 'Trail Cameras' started by bigbluetruck, Nov 18, 2019.

  1. bigbluetruck

    bigbluetruck Active Member

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    Location:
    Nebraska
    All these bucks come off 1 camera in my "prime" hunting area. I was real excited about the 5x5 until he was broke off. Pretty happy there looks to be at least 3-4 potential shooters next year. This doesnt count all the smaller bucks around too.

    Apologize for the quality, have to take pictures from the laptop because it doesnt want to load them directly to the internet[​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]

    Sent from my SM-G930V using Tapatalk
     
  2. Drycreek

    Drycreek Well-Known Member

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    Location:
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    The crop is looking good BBT. That next to last looks like a big bodied mature buck for sure.
     
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  3. Chainsaw

    Chainsaw Well-Known Member

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    Location:
    northern New York
    Hardiness Zone:
    literally on the line of 4b/5a
    You have some great deer there Big Blue. I struggle to age the deer on this property but feel I do OK. However on a property far, far away it is impossible for me. There are many factors that tell me age here. One is antler diameter just above the burr. Using the eye which is around 4 3/4 inches circumference according to DR. Krolls "Aging And Judging Trophy Whitetails" to determine the antler diameter just above the burr works great. If it is larger than the eye here it is a solid 4 1/2 or more. Then I look at the neck, if it is very, very huge and fits into the chest and shoulders seamlessly then it is 4 1/2 or more. That particular book has pics of northern and southern bucks throughout their lifetime. I use it to age deer in pictures and found it to be easily doable and believable for the deer here.

    For example using just those two criteria, the third deer pictured (picture 3) if living here would be a solid 4 1/2 and up. I don't know if those two criteria apply to Nebraska. Note; Dr. Kroll's book doesn't say to age deer just by those two criteria but I find it works for me just fine. I mean REALLY! When you only get a second or maybe three to age the deer in the brush just how many measurements can one take?

    Realizing antler growth is so different in each state, it may or may not be applicable to use antler diameter to field judge age as I feel it is here.

    edit- thanks Tap. Words fixed.
     
    Last edited: Jan 10, 2020
    HB_Hunter likes this.
  4. Letmgrow

    Letmgrow Member

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    Location:
    Northern New York State
    Dave, I have to agree with everything you are saying. Geography plays an important role in the aging game. I have seen this when I used to hunt in the Southern Tier of our own state. It always seemed to me antler growth was a year ahead of the northern zone. Some 1 1/2 YO bucks had larger antler growth in the southern zone than 2 1/2 YO northern bucks.
    We have a friend who is a family member of the land directly behind ours who is really into deer aging. His Dad owns land downstate near Bath and they were close friends with the late Charles Alsheimer. In their meetings the deer aging subject came up often. Our friend learned deer aging from Mr. Alsheimer by inspecting the teeth in the upper jaw bone.
    If you were to go to Illinois, Kansas or another state with higher mineral contents in the soils and longer growing seasons you'd see larger antlers on younger deer than you'd ever see up here in our area. Their bodies aren't stressed like they are in the long winters up here either.
    I think aging deer is a combination of science, luck and what you want to believe. Hunting in the same area year after year and studying the trail cam pictures does help narrow the aging process a lot.
     
    Chainsaw likes this.
  5. HB_Hunter

    HB_Hunter Well-Known Member

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    Location:
    Eastern Kentucky
    Hardiness Zone:
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    It’s also helpful to have dates with the pictures. That first pic looks like a 2yo maybe 3yo based on his neck and legs. He might look totally different mid October.

    I like Chainsaw’s method of eye and antler bur mixed with how the neck fits into the shoulders.
     
  6. Jon

    Jon Active Member

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    Location:
    Tully, NY
    Hardiness Zone:
    5
    Best point of the day... honestly, each area I have hunted each deer demographic, genetic disposition for such antler traits and general nutrition essentially makes these the primary factors in assessing deer age. Age again is pretty regionally specific. Once you start to build a history of aging these deer in your specific micro-region, you will probably end up with a 60-70% accuracy rate (minus all our own bias)…its just hard for most of us to give you an accurate number. I think that you'll probably hit a higher accuracy rate if you start to build some camera history...

    Regardless of what I said, Im going to say some of your deer look like 2.5 based on what I know of your general region, some look like some studs!!!!! One or two of these deer are 3.5+.
     
  7. Tap

    Tap Well-Known Member

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    Location:
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    Haha...are you sure you don't mean circumference? Even Nancy Pelosi's eyes aren't 4 3/4" diameter. lol
     
    Chainsaw and cutman like this.
  8. DRandall90

    DRandall90 Member

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    Location:
    Minnesota
    Hardiness Zone:
    3
    I can agree with you on the mineral content and habitat, but I would disagree with you on the winters. I have never noticed the winter to be a reason that antler growth is inhibited. In some ways, I would argue the opposite. Winter has a good way of really working the whole 'survival of the fittest' to death (literally and figuratively) and the bucks that make it past their first winter seem to be very fit and exceptional at growing antlers.

    It's part of the reason why so many people want to hunt Saskatchewan and other northern areas. If you look at the BC records map, the largest racked states are historically northern snowy areas. Granted, since 1980 or so, some of that has shifted south, but the snowy north still carries amazing rack potential.
     

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