Readers ask: What Makes Whitetail Deer Antlers Grow Only One Side?

Why would a deer only have one antler?

A buck growing only one antler could be the result of an injury or genetic mutation. An injury to the limbs often results in some sort of antler malformation, often on the opposite side of the injury.

What causes antler deformities?

Damage to the antler pedicle or the skull’s frontal bone is the most common cause of antler malformation. These injuries show up more often in older bucks due to their more aggressive fighting. Damage to the antler during the velvet stage can result in antlers growing in strange directions or weird shapes.

What puts mass on deer antlers?

While antlers are growing, they’re comprised mainly of calcium and phosphorous. There are lesser quantities present of potassium, magnesium, iron and zinc. Providing bucks with high levels of calcium and phosphorous can jumpstart antler growth.

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Is spike on one side genetic?

A spike on one side is usually not genetics-related. A buck can’t pass an injury on to its offspring. The goal of the study, Karns said, was to determine if malformed antlers on just one side of a buck’s head could be traced back to an injury rather than genetics.

Can deer break their antlers?

We found that approximately 30% of left antlers were broken in some way annually, a rate that was fairly stable across all 10 years of the study. We attribute the stability of annual antler breakage rates to the relatively stable nutritional level of the deer herd.

How many inches can a buck grow in a year?

Spurred by hormones and excess nutrition, antlers grow from March through late August. Demarais said antlers can grow about 1/8 inch daily for yearlings and about 1/4 inches daily for adult bucks. That’s as much as 1½ inches per week for adults!

How do you tell the age of a buck by its antlers?

There is really no precise way to accurately do deer aging while hunting, other than looking at the teeth. Despite the many stories hunters tell each other, the size of the antlers and the number of points on the antlers is not a reliable age guide. Antler size is more a function of diet and heredity than it is of age.

Are deer antlers worth anything?

Due to the abundance of deer in North America, antlers can be had for relatively cheap. Most antlers are worth just a few bucks per pound, and unless you have a trophy-sized rack, don’t expect to rake in the big bucks anytime soon.

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What is the world record non-typical whitetail?

Pope and Young Club has confirmed Luke Brewster’s 22-point non-typical whitetail buck is a world record. Brewster shot the deer during the 2018 archery season. Its antlers measured 327 and seven-eighth inches. Brewster’s buck beat out the previous record held by Michael Beatty in 2000 by over 33 inches.

What month do whitetail antlers grow the most?

Since the dawn of creation, man has been fascinated by deer antlers. They are the fastest growing bone material known to man, and over a course of 120 days from late March through early August, a mature buck can grow in excess of 200 inches of bone on his head.

What time of year do bucks grow antlers?

Deer grow and shed antlers annually. Males typically begin growing a new set of antlers in late spring. Growth starts at the pedicle, which is the antler growing base attached to the skull (see Figure 2).

What food plot is best for antler growth?

Clovers and beans are easily the top two food plots that are going to promote healthy antler growth, but brassicas are another great option that can essentially be planted year round.

How old is a whitetail spike buck?

“Once a spike, always a spike.” Hardly. As this photo essay shows, you never know what a whitetail buck’s antler potential will be until it reaches full maturity, which usually doesn’t occur until it is 6 to 7 years old.

Will a spike buck always be a spike buck?

Few yearling bucks with spike antlers are genetically programmed to remain spike bucks at maturity. But if we shoot them as spikes, yes, they will never have more than spike antlers. If hunters would let them go, plenty of them can grow into handsome trophies once they overcome a slow start.

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How can you tell if a buck is cull?

Ideally, all bucks should be evaluated on an apples to apples basis. For example, if most of the bucks at 3 1/2 years of age on a property have 8+ antler points, then a 3 1/2 year old buck with 6 or fewer antler points would probably be considered a cull buck.

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