Still Hanging On

Your growing antlers, Bambi continued, are proof of your intimate place in the forest, For of all the things that live and grow only the trees and the deer shed their foliage each year and replace it more strongly, more magnificently, in the Spring. Each year the trees grow larger and put on more leaves. And so you too increase In size and wear a larger, stronger crown.

~Felix Salten

After placing a new trail camera down along the wet weather creek, I was rewarded with a very nice clip of a beautiful White-tailed deer buck. This is from February 18, about the time most deer in our area are dropping their antlers for the season. As I mentioned in a recent post about Moose in Yellowstone, antler drop is an annual event for male members of the deer family, caused by changing day-length and lowered testosterone levels after the mating season.

–A nice buck poses for the new trail camera (best if viewed full screen)

A week ago, I had a very short clip that showed this buck still sports his nice set of antlers. It is getting a bit late for them to still be carrying their antlers, so I would love to have him drop one or both somewhere on our property. I have only found one antler shed here in all the years of roaming these woods. Rodents make short work of shed antlers for their calcium content.

The same day the large buck above was caught on camera, a smaller buck who had dropped its antlers was filmed. Note the roundish scar between the ey and ear – the pedicle. Soon, new antler growth will begin at this site for next mating season’s crowns.

— This buck has already dropped its antlers. You can see the pedicle as a scar-like mark between the ear and eye on each side of its head

5 thoughts on “Still Hanging On

  1. These are marvelous videos and such fascinating information! I just learned this year that they lose their antlers and grow new ones next year. I had always assumed that they just keep growing bigger as they get older!

  2. Wow, Mike. That new camera is amazing. Beautiful ungulate specimens, too! I can tell they are NOT freaked out by sound or light from the camera. Nice videos. Eager to see the night time ones.

    • I agree, Deb, it seems very sharp, especially in daylight. This one is also a dark ops type so there are no visible lights at night. I asked a group tat I follow on FB (Voyageurs Wolf Project) that have very clear videos about their cameras and this is what they use. You should check them out, amazing trail cam videos.

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