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  #1  
Old 11-13-2019, 08:58 AM
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SOOS Buck



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I was hunting on a friend's property last week. What looked to be a nice, 3-4 year old 10 pointer wandered out of the woods and into the shooting lane in front of me at about 60 yards about 5 minutes before I lost shooting light. It was the only buck I had seen in 3 days of hunting (probably saw 20+ does), and I was going back home the next day, so I harvested him.

When I climbed out of the stand, and made my way to him, I was very surprised to see the right hand side of his rack consisted of a brow tine and a big long spike.

Now, all my hunting life, I have been told that a spike-on-one-side (SOOS) was a genetic aberration, and such bucks should be harvested immediately in order to prevent further tainting of the gene pool. So, when I got home, I did a little research and found out that this assumption is incorrect. A study done at Auburn University between 2010 and 2012 found that SOOS antlers are cause by injuries. Most of the injuries are to the antler pedicle, the organ in the skull that sprouts the antler, from fighting or too vigorous rubbing, but they can also be caused by bone injuries in other parts of the body that rob antler growth of its needed calcium.

Anyway, here is what my deer's antler looked like. If I had let him pass, his offspring would not have inherited the deformity, and he may have even recovered from it in a couple more years.

https://imgur.com/a/saD3H60

Last edited by FALPhil; 11-13-2019 at 09:01 AM. Reason: IMG tags not working
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Old 11-13-2019, 09:36 AM
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Well, that is still a very cool set of antlers, and you have a good memory of the hunt. But the harvest allowed you to learn something, and then pass that on to others. For that, I think the harvest has even more value.

You come home safe, had a good time, harvested humanely, and learned something new. In all regards, a fine hunt.
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Old 11-13-2019, 12:33 PM
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Definitely looks like an injury. I shot one last year with a really nice five points on one side, and a large tall V on the other, after skinning out the head, his skull had been crushed on that side do to some injury, still was not stopping him from chasing the girls. I actually like the looks of a unique rack.
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Old 11-13-2019, 01:17 PM
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Yea.... was the same thing with spikes for a good bit. Ya know, once a spike always a spoke. Well, some school in Texas allowed a number of spikes to "grow up" and guess what.... They ended up with a bunch of high scoring racks after year 4.5 season. My understanding is that they looked pretty good at 3.5 also.

We had a "cow horn" spike with better then 14" spikes a few years ago. He had a noticeable scar on his left flank. Likely from barbed wire. Any way, I put him at 2.5-3.5 when we first saw him. The following year that same deer showed a really fine 8 point rack with lots of mass and inside width.

Go figure.
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Last edited by huntschool; 11-13-2019 at 01:22 PM.
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Old 11-13-2019, 01:31 PM
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Yeah I read years ago the notion of a “cull buck” was mostly fallacy. They don’t pass it on genetically, and the next year their rack may be fine.

Good luck trying to convince people who believe otherwise though.


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Old 11-13-2019, 02:19 PM
Donnie Powell
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That is a neat set of antlers.
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Old 11-28-2019, 05:36 AM
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I always thought one funky antler meant most likely an injury, and two meant most likely genetic.

Buddies have shot some w one bad side and found wounds to opp side healed.
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Old 11-28-2019, 07:12 AM
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Good info, my first Buck was 4 the hard way, 3 and 1, I'd looked at so many Does in a Buck only area and was on the last day of a four day trip, and you can't eat horns.
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Old 11-28-2019, 02:05 PM
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My first deer ever was a yearling doe with fuzzy/velvet horns about an inch or so high. To remain PC I will refrain from further comment.
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