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Hot Topic (More than 30 Replies) Growing Fallow buck trophies .... (Read 28796 times)
Grandad
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sonofthemist

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Growing Fallow buck trophies ....
Feb 3rd, 2011 at 8:33am
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for you or somebody else.

It saddens me often, when I see the very young bucks which are shot by the typical N.Z. hunter. And often with some comment about "rubbish head". Rubbish! It's not rubbish, just young. It's the Fiordland Wapiti situation over again. A New Zealand Fallow buck will not have a mature head until at least 6 1/2. Say in the zone 6 1/2 to 9. So many of them are being shot as two year olds -- just because they've got antlers. I will elaborate on the growth pattern.
At twelve months old, obviously the buck grows spikes. OK, but there are spikes and "spikes". An ordinary little nondescript spiker, of say Wanganui domicile, might have spikes of 40mm length. 1 1/2 inches. But shift to an area where the habitat is better, and the original gene pool was good, and those spikes can be 120mm. 4 3/4 inches. It is pretty stupid to shoot a fallow spiker of that latter type for meat. It's happening all the time.
At 2 1/4 years, our buck grows his first set of proper antlers-- call him a two yr old, 'cause he will shed at 2 yrs 10 months. Pretty basic antlers, only say 340mm (13 inches) long. Short front tines, with two rudimentary tines at the top. Not a "shit head", he's just a teenager. And the bodysize is the real clue -- just like an oversize spiker. Here's a 2 yr old buck:



The 3 1/2 year buck tho, looks more like the real thing. His body is bulking up and he stands up straight. His antler length will be about 18 inches (470mm), carries about 11 or 12 points with narrow, slight palmation. The head is still noticeably narrow -- I call it the "straight antlered" buck. The reason tho is because his skull is still developing and the pedicles influence the antler shape.
A four year old buck tho (4 1/4 at polishing), will be looking quite good. Antler length is still fairly short at about 20" or just over, and light. But he now has proper palms. Fairly narrow, but at least he is looking like a Fallow buck. His maturing skull (he's a 30 yr old in human terms) has given him a bit of spread. A lot of this type of buck gets shot. A pity, because he has yet to get the beam, length and palms which come from bone growth. A developed skeleton. One to three more years and he would have been a trophy to be proud of. Environment permitting.
Here's a pic of a 4 yr old buck of a very good type. DS200. He needs another two years:


And this is what you are striving for: a World class buck shot in the Wairarapa. DS 247 7/8. Aged 8 yrs & going back.

a previously unpublished pic

Say 6 1/2 to 8yr old is the optimum for a Fallow trophy. Beyond that, they are going back. It takes thinking hunters, as well as environment and genes, to produce trophies. And a bit of luck.
Think about it.
« Last Edit: Jan 7th, 2016 at 3:36am by Chris B »  

The fraternity of shooters is rather like the fraternity of blind men -- each one walks alone.&&: Ian Niall.
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BC
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Re: Growing Fallow buck trophies ....
Reply #1 - Feb 3rd, 2011 at 11:14pm
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Interesting thanks.

Most hunter just see our Fallow herds as a useful way of keeping meat fresh until they need some.

I have been a little like this, but your opinion has made me re-think...
  

Too often we enjoy the comfort of opinion without the discomfort of thought.......
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chris
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Re: Growing Fallow buck trophies ....
Reply #2 - Feb 4th, 2011 at 1:11am
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thanks grandad. great info and gives me a much better understanding of antler size in relation to age.
by crikey that mounted buck is an absolutely beautifull creature!
  
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Re: Growing Fallow buck trophies ....
Reply #3 - Feb 6th, 2011 at 5:05am
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SmileySame thing happens here in the west, Grandad.
Please let them grow folks Cry
  
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BAZZA
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Re: Growing Fallow buck trophies ....
Reply #4 - Feb 6th, 2011 at 6:09am
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thanks for putting that up i hope the hunters that go into the caples and the greenstone this year have a look at what you have said. Smiley
  
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X-POACHER-YEAH RYT
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Re: Growing Fallow buck trophies ....
Reply #5 - Feb 6th, 2011 at 8:59am
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Thanks Grandad, for continuing to share your extensive knowledge of Fallow with the Forum.
The greatest threat to bucks surviving to trophy size in our area are pine plantation owners, who do not like the damage that they can cause to trees. Roll Eyes In saying that, I have seen a couple of good bucks last year, did not shoot them, as I have one on the wall already, sufficient for me.
  

Get as close as you can, then get a bit closer.
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Grandad
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sonofthemist

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Re: Growing Fallow buck trophies ....
Reply #6 - Feb 6th, 2011 at 7:28pm
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X-POACHER-YEAH RYT wrote on Feb 6th, 2011 at 8:59am:
I have seen a couple of good bucks last year, did not shoot them, as I have one on the wall already, sufficient for me.


Good on you.  I haven't shot a buck for years, but I've photographed some beauts.
  

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Re: Growing Fallow buck trophies ....
Reply #7 - Feb 16th, 2011 at 4:43am
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Same problem with the Pollock herd.  To many people shooting young stags.  I have access to one area up there and filmed three small stags in the two to three years old range last roar.  Our plan is to leave all stags for as long as possible to try and let them grow and maybe oneday get a wall hanger. 

Those three stags all held hinds so they were probably the better ones in the area.

Fingers crossed they will stay on the farm and grow to a decent size
  
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Grandad
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Re: Growing Fallow buck trophies ....
Reply #8 - Feb 16th, 2011 at 10:48pm
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You've got the right philosophy Kimber08,.  Good on ya.
And it will work beautifully in that country.  Tightly controlled access;  top class grazing; good original gene pool.  As long as you can control the poachers.
I've known the Pollock deer all my life, and there's nothing more admirable than the McMahon head with it's 12" guard tines,  or Ron Hogan's big pickup.
Only 8 weeks to your rut. Wait for that big buck.  (bucks & does).
Good hunting.
  

The fraternity of shooters is rather like the fraternity of blind men -- each one walks alone.&&: Ian Niall.
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Re: Growing Fallow buck trophies ....
Reply #9 - Feb 19th, 2011 at 4:35am
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Thanks for the info Grandad,interesting. Cool
  

Shot a few deer,caugth some big trout and salmon
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Re: Growing Fallow buck trophies ....
Reply #10 - Feb 19th, 2011 at 7:23pm
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Absolutely agree that 6- 8 year bracket is prime I have had bucks on good tucker hold their antler mass all the way out to 10 years in some cases.
All a fallow needs is time to grow access to good farm fringe grass/pasture helps too
  

"There he goes. One of God's own prototypes. Some kind of high powered mutant never even considered for mass production. Too weird to live, and too rare to die.
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Re: Growing Fallow buck trophies ....
Reply #11 - Feb 20th, 2011 at 1:33am
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Thanks Grandad,
                          I have shot what I thought was a scrubber fallow in the past, and now I know it just needed a little more maturity.
  
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Re: Growing Fallow buck trophies ....
Reply #12 - Jun 12th, 2011 at 7:26am
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Well said. Take a photo and leave it till next year and it will be bigger.
  
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Re: Growing Fallow buck trophies ....
Reply #13 - Jun 14th, 2011 at 12:30am
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Thank you Grandad.

I hunt the Pollock herd quite regularly too and like 7mmsaum I shot what I thought until now was a scrubber. Big body crap head. Will leave them next time. I did see a couple months back a beautiful big white Buck with a pretty good head on him. Will check again next year.

Cheers
  
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Re: Growing Fallow buck trophies ....
Reply #14 - Jun 15th, 2011 at 11:03am
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Grandad wrote on Feb 3rd, 2011 at 8:33am:
for you or somebody else.





I bet you now really regret getting your Moko done in prison. Grin
  
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