Not much to tell. Sitting in my 12 year old tree stand about 8 am in the morning, the deer is spooked by someting a good ways from me. He stops 3 times each time in the thick, no shot, about 100 yard in the woods from me. The last move he made was to a thin spot I was holding on and I let her fly when he got in the window. He took off over the hill and gone. Thought I had hit him but he never bucked or anything. About 150 yards away I found him with a double lung shot. I could not belive the size of the deer as deer here in No Va are usally smaller.
That is a beautiful buck. I don't know if I would call them N. VA generally smaller. I have seen some very big bucks in Paige and Shenandoah counties. Seems to me they run a bit larger than the deer down here in SE VA.
It was in Prince William Co about 3 miles from Manassas. I was using my Blackpower gun because its a buckshot only area. They allow us to use our BP durring reg gun season. I would of never gotten him with buckshot. This was about 5 years ago. I did get a nice heavy rack 10 pt this year. Not near the rack of the one above but close in mass and you bet ya "right place at the right time". I have seen 2 different bucks bigger then the one above but it was durring bow and couldn't get a shot. This is the same woods we have shot lots of scrubs out of over the years.
Nice work, sounds like you have some good management that has paid off. I have a property that we are managing now, but I haven't really grasped how to clean out the scrubs and how you determine they are scrubs. Can you give me an idea?
So far, I've been planting some patches of rye and clover and shooting does and not letting any dogs run the swamp. Never penetrate the swamp during the season except for the last week when we do some man dirves and always insist on scent control. So far, it seems to be working as we get at least one nice heavy 8 per year. This year I killed my largest 7 ever - see my Caroline County buck report. It seems to work and I am curious about how you cull the poor antler potential. Thanks.
"Culling" and antler management seems to always bring out the best in hunters[wink] Opinions the subject are about as varied as the "best bait for tunas". I have for the past 5 or so years, and always will be of the mindset that the only way to see their potential is to let them live. Once a spike isn't always a spike, and once a 4 pointer isn't always a 4 pointer. That is unless you see those big ole long 6-10" cow horns or a really wide, "old" and big bodied 4 or 6 pointer. Otherwise it's your seed for the future your killing. As for the does...shoot your gun barrel hot if you've got the freezer space. Or you know plenty of folks who enjoy venison.
Trex has it right. I guess its about the size of the deer vrs the horns when making a judgment call. All the deer are eating the same thing in a giving area so body growth should be close. IMO, geenes play a role in body size too. I wish I had some pics of what I would concider scrubs. I do belive a true trophy is in the geene pool and not as much a diet or age thing. Sure they may grow to 8's or 10's but the mass and rack quality is where the breeding comes into play IMO. Like the big 6 pter with no brow tines, I belive they he will not grow brow tines the next year or the year after. It likes the palmed out rack vrs the round rack. I think its that bucks destiny to grow that style rack year after year just more of it evey year until he is past prime. A story from last year. I got to hunt a 1100 acre club/farm and only 5 folks and there guest get to hunt it. They are only allowed 1 anything buck a year the rest have to be 8's or better and wall hanging material. It was late in the season and the bucks had herded back up. I had 14 bucks come out on me and I could not find a trophy or marginal wall hanger in any of them. So I didn't shoot. A couple may grow to a trophy but most looked like just regular bucks, thin smallish racks, some were down right scruby for the size of the deer. I got to watch them for 20 minutes or so within 100 yards so I got a good look at all of them. Those guys only kill a couple trophys a year there. I think they would do better in time if they culled some of those scrubs. But its there club and they can make the rules as they want. All this being said I am really a meat hunter at heart and kill my share of does every year for the table. I have just gotten blessed with a few great bucks over the years.
We have been mostly meat hunters until the last few years when we have limited our drives and limited dogs running the swamps until the last week of the season. This year has been a banner year and we have had a couple of member's sons kill some does and you should see how proud they are. It is really great to see the glee in their eye as two 12 - 15 year old boys bag their first solo deer. Thanks for the info guys, year is almost over and I think we still have a couple of big ones waiting for us next year and they will get bigger with the feed we're putting on for them. I hope to post a big one after the 2nd.
Feeshon In a Treestand When I am Not Aboard the Jezebel II[grin]
BAMBI KILLER!!!!!! Just kiddin' [wink][wink] That's a dandy. I've never got one like that big boy, but I will second you on the black powder hunting. I think its the best by far. I think that you see almost the same amount of deer as bow season, but you have FIREPOWER!!! [grin][grin][grin] Good luck.
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