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#3061714 - 12/03/12 06:09 PM BSK, Mature Deer ?
yamaha200
4 Point


Registered: 01/31/12
Posts: 482
Loc: seymour

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I often read where guys only kill mature deer. I also see where some consider a mature deer being at the age of 3 1/2 yrs old. With the knowlege that you have in deer, what do you think is the proper age to call a deer a mature deer ?
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#3061881 - 12/03/12 07:29 PM Re: BSK, Mature Deer ? [Re: yamaha200]
Mike Belt
TnDeer Old Timer
16 Point


Registered: 03/26/99
Posts: 18563
Loc: Lakeland, Tn.

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Not BSK but I'm going to say 4.5 years old.
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#3061901 - 12/03/12 07:35 PM Re: BSK, Mature Deer ? [Re: Mike Belt]
TheBrokenArrow
4 Point


Registered: 09/30/12
Posts: 120
Loc: sumner county TN

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around 4 to 5
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#3061946 - 12/03/12 07:51 PM Re: BSK, Mature Deer ? [Re: TheBrokenArrow]
Andy S.
TnDeer Old Timer
14 Point


Registered: 07/26/99
Posts: 8090
Loc: Atoka, TN

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Biologically speaking, 4.5 is the answer.
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#3061953 - 12/03/12 07:54 PM Re: BSK, Mature Deer ? [Re: Andy S.]
redblood
16 Point


Registered: 01/22/06
Posts: 15337
Loc: Lewisburg

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4.5. i have a hard time passing a top end 3.5
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#3062404 - 12/04/12 05:28 AM Re: BSK, Mature Deer ? [Re: redblood]
yamaha200
4 Point


Registered: 01/31/12
Posts: 482
Loc: seymour

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ttt
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#3062505 - 12/04/12 07:25 AM Re: BSK, Mature Deer ? [Re: yamaha200]
BSK
Jerkasourous of the non-typical kind
Non-Typical


Registered: 03/11/99
Posts: 65979
Loc: Nashville, TN

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Biologically, a deer is considered mature at 4 1/2. They are considered "young" as yearlings, and "middle-aged" at 2 1/2 through 3 1/2.

I do know some hunters that really can kill mature (4 1/2+) bucks almost every year, but 1) they are exceptionally good hunters who spend untold hours in a treestand; and/or 2) hunt areas with very low hunting pressure and a fair number of mature bucks in the area.

Due to the difficulty of seeing/killing mature bucks, I try to convince clients to just hold out for 3 1/2+ bucks. 3 1/2 year-old bucks are easier to see and kill than 4 1/2+ bucks, and they are generally carrying 85% of the antler size they will ever grow (so hunters aren't missing that much by taking a buck at 3 1/2).
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#3062607 - 12/04/12 08:46 AM Re: BSK, Mature Deer ? [Re: BSK]
hunterncoach
6 Point


Registered: 12/15/10
Posts: 706
Loc: northern middle tn

content Online
 Originally Posted By: BSK
Biologically, a deer is considered mature at 4 1/2. They are considered "young" as yearlings, and "middle-aged" at 2 1/2 through 3 1/2.

I do know some hunters that really can kill mature (4 1/2+) bucks almost every year, but 1) they are exceptionally good hunters who spend untold hours in a treestand; and/or 2) hunt areas with very low hunting pressure and a fair number of mature bucks in the area.

Due to the difficulty of seeing/killing mature bucks, I try to convince clients to just hold out for 3 1/2+ bucks. 3 1/2 year-old bucks are easier to see and kill than 4 1/2+ bucks, and they are generally carrying 85% of the antler size they will ever grow (so hunters aren't missing that much by taking a buck at 3 1/2).
There are some theories that suggest a deer who reaches the age of 6.5 actually become more easy to kill than a 4.5 & 5.5 yr old due to range reduction & increased daytime movement...and most deer will continue to grow larger antlers until that period. I know its not feasible in most areas to allow deer to get that old, but what are your experiences with this age class of deer?

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#3062643 - 12/04/12 09:15 AM Re: BSK, Mature Deer ? [Re: hunterncoach]
Winchester
Non-Typical


Registered: 12/05/03
Posts: 27865
Loc: TN

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I agree with BSK, 4.5 is fully mature but many 3.5's have the antler needed to make them a target. I try not shoot anything under 4.5 myself but under some circumstances if a 3.5 has enough antler to suit me he gets shot. As for the 6.5's and older becoming easier to kill I couldnt disagree more, the older bucks if anything move less and less during daylight as the years go by, and even react less and less to the rut!
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#3062731 - 12/04/12 10:08 AM Re: BSK, Mature Deer ? [Re: Winchester]
hunterncoach
6 Point


Registered: 12/15/10
Posts: 706
Loc: northern middle tn

content Online
 Originally Posted By: Winchester
I agree with BSK, 4.5 is fully mature but many 3.5's have the antler needed to make them a target. I try not shoot anything under 4.5 myself but under some circumstances if a 3.5 has enough antler to suit me he gets shot. As for the 6.5's and older becoming easier to kill I couldnt disagree more, the older bucks if anything move less and less during daylight as the years go by, and even react less and less to the rut!
I used to think the same as you until I killed a deer that was 6.5 & scored 175. I first saw him as a 4.5 & saw him 3 times that year, once as a 5 yr old & 8 times before I killed him as a 6.5...so from my experience I think that the theory is plausible


Edited by hunterncoach (12/04/12 10:09 AM)

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