Discussion in 'Whitetail Deer Hunting' started by Indianabowhunter12, Mar 20, 2017.
How many inches does a whitetail bucks antlers grow from 3 to 4 years old typically, anybody know?
So many facters that play a part in antler growth but its usually a noticeable jump in size if everything is ok with all that play a part in the antler growth
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As stated above thats a very difficult question to answer. Its dependent on genetics, location, food sources, water sources, environmental stress, human pressure, predation pressure, and deer density among many other things. As a rule of thumb here in TN the difference in rack size from 3-4 years old is usually about 10-12". However I have seen deer lose 10" from 3-4 because of stress. We had one set of sheds from a 3 year old and the next year he was killed, in that one year he added 50" of antler!!!!! Its impossible to say what each deer will do from year to year but thats what keeps me watching the trail cams...
Every deer is different. To many factors come into play to really say. I think reasonably one could expect a 10-15" jump if they are not stressed and have an easy winter. As stated before they can also lose inches too. I have examples of both from pictures. One deer I had on camera lost inches between 2013 and 2014 because we had the hardest winter on record. The deer I shot last year put on 20-30" because he had two easy winters in a row and great genetics. I attached the one I figured put on 20-30" between 2015 and 2016.
To many variables but in most cases if conditions are favorable it best to pass on a 3 year old if you have that luxury. The target ranges in most locations for age is 4 to 5 years old I think.
Aging deer is one of the hardest things for me. Ive ran ALOT of trail cameras from 2013 to now (Been running them since 2003, but starting running 10+ after 2013), and every im year im reanalyzing how old i think my local bucks are.
For example, my #1 hitlister Captain Hook. I have no idea whether hes 6 or 7 this year. I started getting pictures of him in 2014 and he looked 4, but the following year he didnt make a very big jump. (14, 15, 16).
Then theres Senior. Rack wise my gut tells me he was 3 in 2014, 4 in 2015 and 6 last year. But his body tells me hes a year older than Captain Hook. (Senior on the right, Hook on the left).
Its a great mystery. On the newest episode of Midwest Whitetail, Bill Weinke states he has guessed wrong on most of the bucks hes killed. That tells me i have a long ways to go before im accurate in judging age.
As far as inches from 3 to 4, i think its depends on these variable in order: Genetics-Nutrition-Weather-Stress.
Here is an example of one that hasn't done much. 4 years of history.
Don't listen to these hacks...the answer is 38.6292573 inches. Anyone that tells you different is utterly and completely full of it.
Thanks for the reply !
I will add getting to know the deer in your area and starting to kill a few and have them aged by the teeth goes a long ways when guessing age. You will start to pick up on average body shape and antler characteristics for the age groups. Genetics is one thing that can mess with everyone's guessing though. A deer with great genetics usually always looks older.
Hell that 312" non typical from Tennessee last November was aged at 3.5 in the one article I read.
Lots of conspiracy theories with that buck.
The 199" buck my brother killed is the anomaly in our area. Were pretty certain that he was either 5.5 or 6.5 years old. The earliest evidence we have of him is a (supposed) shed from 3 years prior, and he coulda have been either 3 or 4. He probably scored 130-140. The next year he BLEW up to 200ish. I have a shed that scored 82" from him. Then my brother killed him at 199" the following year.
He went from a mainframe 8 with 2 kickers (mid 130s), to a mainframe 10 with 10 plus kickers (200) to a mainframe 9 with 4 kickers (199").
That deer was killed very close to me. TWRA has officially aged him at 4.5 but the first biologist that checked him out put him at 3.5.
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Either way that is a crazy amount of antler for any wild deer being 3.5 or 4.5 to grow. I think the general consensus is with perfect conditions most deer don't top out till at least 6.5.
The Milo Hansen buck has been aged at 3.5 as well.
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