Deer Age?

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DeanoZ
 
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Deer Age?

Postby DeanoZ » Wed Nov 19, 2008 9:46 am

I hear all you experienced hunters talking about the age of deer 1.5,2.5,3.5 etc and was wondering, on the hoof how can you tell the age of a deer?  I know you can do it by examining the teeth after the kill, but in deciding the age of a deer by merely looking at it how can you tell?  Is it antler size, neck girth, hoof size etc?

ReflexHunter
 
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RE: Deer Age?

Postby ReflexHunter » Wed Nov 19, 2008 10:01 am

Hey there DeanoZ, I am no expert at aging but heres what I look at.  I look first at antler size, is there mass? Beam length? Tine Length?  Although antlers arent a great age determinant that is a fast on the hoof guess to get you in the ballpark.  Second I look at body size, if a deer makes me think wow! then I know its a fairly old buck (3.5 or so)  If the neck blends with the body and the belly sags quite a bit its an older deer.  The bucks that you see that appear to have longer legs are usually younger deer, like 1.5, 2.5.  If you can get multiple trail camera pictures from different angles on a deer it can make things a lot easier for you because you can sit down and determine if a deer is old enough that you want to harvest it before you actually see him in the field.  The multiple angles give you a better perspective of the deer because sometimes different angles make a deer look larger or smaller.  I still find it extremely hard to age a buck while hunting other than is he big enough for me to shoot, because I have making the shot on my mind.  I find that knowing what bucks are out there makes a huge difference in knowing whether to shoot.  That is some information for you but there are much better sources out there online that go more in depth on certain ages, I would suggest checking them out if you want to learn more.  Hope that helps you .

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JPH
 
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RE: Deer Age?

Postby JPH » Wed Nov 19, 2008 10:30 am

Do a little internet searching and you'll find some good resources. D&DH has published a number of articles on this topic.
 
I did a quick google and found some decent stuff. Here are just a few.
 
http://www.stickemarchery.com/Main.aspx?pid=145&tab=146
http://www.qdma.com/articles/details.asp?id=86
http://www.huntingpa.com/Aging%20deer.html
http://www.leapoutdoors.com/files/Field_aging_deer.pdf
 
enjoy.

Demoderby4
 
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RE: Deer Age?

Postby Demoderby4 » Wed Nov 19, 2008 2:49 pm

Well it is possible, but it's not easy after a certain point. Anything older than 4.5 is going to be pretty difficult to age on the hoof. There's an article in the land mgt. issue of D&DH that Alshiemer wrote that might help you out. But it can be done with younger deer easier. Smaller rack is basically most the time going to lead to a 1.5 or 2.5 depending on nutrition and the health of your deer herd. 1.5-2.5 normally wont have more than 10 points at the very most and typically and wont have much mass, Those deer will also have a thiner neck, longer legs for their body, a smaller leaner stomach and a shorter snout. Older deer some 2.5 and 3.5-4.5 will fill out more, having larger necks that kind of look like they just blend into the rest of the body of the deer, the legs in the older deer will look shorter for its body and it might look like the deer is walking more choppier than the younger deer, the snout will be longer and the deer's stomach will be saggier, (like he has a gut) on the older deer. Darker Tarsal glands are also a sign of a more mature deer, the darker the older. Thier are other variables as well, but i recommend getting that issue for a reference if you want more info. Hope i helped!

DeanoZ
 
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RE: Deer Age?

Postby DeanoZ » Thu Nov 20, 2008 8:52 am

Thanks JPH for the links and thanks all for teh valuable feedback...i think i have a pretty good idea now of how  to guess the age on the hoof.

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JPH
 
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RE: Deer Age?

Postby JPH » Thu Nov 20, 2008 9:45 am

And that is exactly what it is...a guess. But keep at it and try to verify with jawbones (also a guess) after the fact.

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BIG 8
 
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RE: Deer Age?

Postby BIG 8 » Mon Nov 15, 2010 3:22 pm

Id guess 2.5 or 3.5 years old on this buck
Addicted to hunting!!

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bigwisconsinbucks
 
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RE: Deer Age?

Postby bigwisconsinbucks » Mon Nov 15, 2010 4:44 pm

3.5
Kyle

extrmhntr
 
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RE: Deer Age?

Postby extrmhntr » Tue Nov 16, 2010 12:29 pm

Thanks guys. I needed some reassurance on my guess. I was saying a healthy 2 1/2 to 3 1/2 but i haven't seen him before this year so i didn't have any pictures to go by

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Patriot
 
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RE: Deer Age?

Postby Patriot » Tue Nov 16, 2010 6:48 pm

3.5 looks like to me, but I'm no expert.
Paul K. "aim small, miss small"
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