OLD Buck: Would You Shoot Him?

Discussion in 'Whitetail Deer Hunting' started by airenlow, Oct 23, 2017.

  1. BowHood

    BowHood Weekend Warrior

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    I like to hunt old mature bucks, so shooting a 7-8 year old deer is a trophy in it self.
     
  2. Spear

    Spear Grizzled Veteran

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    Told ya Josh, it's a tough decision lol. As I said on FB, I would shoot him for the sake of management. I like wily old scrubs and unless you strictly hunt for antler score, the older buck you can take the better off you will be next year by not shooting one this year who might end up with even greater potential for next year. You aren't going to have old bucks like this every year so some years it's better to shoot no bucks, other years it might be better to take an old buck like this one. It's all about setting up the age structure and managing the herd to set yourself up years to come. Just my 2 pennies worth, not that it means much :)
     
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  3. Bubby D

    Bubby D Weekend Warrior

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    I'd let him walk, I don't really see any management benefits. He's over the hill but not dead, my guess is he's not going to bully other mature bucks. He's probably not going to be the most tender meat in the woods. If he does spread his seed during the rut so be it he was a good buck in his prime and will pass those genetics around. I'd let him go.
     
  4. quickstick

    quickstick Weekend Warrior

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    This is a great topic. Airenlow, I completely understand why you’re perplexed on this good ol’ boy. Some of the responders say he’s earned his pass. Let em get fat on acorns (but he obviously isn’t from your pics. Wow what a change!). Others say taking such a mature deer is a great accomplishment. I agree with them both, not to sound like a politician as they each have valid points.

    What it comes down to is what makes you happy. If ur in it for just meat, he probably won’t be very tasty. If ur in it for horns, he’s not your guy.

    Personally, one of my fav BHOD episodes is when Todd had a few encounters with an old buck they named Thriller. He had these weird red eyes, was obviously very old, but superior instincts & survival skills. Todd tried to stop him once ( he had no intention of shooting him ) with their typical “mah” sound. Other bucks freeze, look straight at them and barely flinch when the bow goes off. Thriller on the other hand immediately bolted out to about 40 yds, looked at where the sound came from briefly and then slinked away. Now that’s a SMART DEER!

    Sorry so long winded but here’s what I’d do. Let it play out. If he comes close enough, I’d pass him the 1st time. If he comes in a 2nd time I’d take him. I’m not that concerned about meat. Does are better eating anyway. I’d European mount him to a plaque with photos of him in his prime. Add any sheds of his if you have them. I’d even get him aged and add a little write up about him. To me, that would give him the respect he deserves, be a huge success for you and the ultimate conversation piece anywhere is the man cave or living room. If allowed by the better half.

    Thanks for sharing his story
     
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  5. airenlow

    airenlow Die Hard Bowhunter

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    Floppy was in the plot 3 days this week...10:26, 10:27 and 10:30. The old man is making some big mistakes!
     
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  6. Shocker99

    Shocker99 Die Hard Bowhunter

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    Yea I changed my mind. Take the old man out. After thinking of it you would just be sparing him of a slow and painful ending. If not to your arrow it will be to a more cruel outcome. FYI I still think he is a great trophy


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  7. Aaron S

    Aaron S Newb

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    So you talked crap on my message two days ago and the talk about this dude being a mercy kill. Well he is clearly not wounded and if you ain’t going to eat him then you’re just killing just to kill. That makes you not so much a hunter as it does someone with blood lust. KILL ONLY FOR THE FOOD!!!!!


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  8. Hatfield Hunter

    Hatfield Hunter Weekend Warrior

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    did ya ever see wolves taking down a buck and eating it? I have it aint pretty. shoot him
     
  9. Dan Boedigheimer

    Dan Boedigheimer Newb

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    I would shoot him in a heartbeat. Big body size can be just as impressive as a big rack, and judging by the photos, hes a tank.
     
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  10. BigRedOak

    BigRedOak Weekend Warrior

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    i have three buck tags so id shoot.
     
  11. tynimiller

    tynimiller Legendary Woodsman

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    I think one of the best things these old deer teach us is once they get past around 6 years old their body characteristics can really change and make many think they're younger than they really are. They begin to thin down weight wise, necks don't swell as much and just take a weathered look sometimes. Briskets are there but thin, shoulder definition is less but you can tell once was, skin seems just a touch bigger than needed due to all this as well...at a glance these old boys often times are labeled as 2.5s or 3.5s because of how it all changes. NOT every old deer will have that swooped back, just like not every human gets a crooked back.

    I'd be killing this guy 100%
     
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  12. Cooter/MN

    Cooter/MN Grizzled Veteran

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    I'm not sure this buck would taste very good at that age and I'm not interested in his small rack. So, it would seem that my answer would be no on shooting him. I get one buck tag.
     
  13. MI Apex Predator

    MI Apex Predator Newb

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    Im conflicted, but i think he gets a pass. Im leaning more toward his body is recovering from some sort of injury, hit by a car, wounded by a hunter last year, ehd, infection. It would explain his loss in bone and his absence from your trail cameras (hiding and healing elsewhere). Maybe he shows up next year and hes spectacular again! If you shoot him you never know, or if he dies in the off season you may wonder. Good luck with whatever decision you make.
     
  14. archbunk

    archbunk Weekend Warrior

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    I would probably shoot him and do a euro mount with pics as quickstick suggested. Part of the reason for antler mass loss and body weight could be caused by worn down degraded teeth depending on how old he is. This would not allow him to get the nutrients he needs. Just a thought.


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