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Online Bowhunts : Bowhunting For Deer : 2008
Last Updated: Aug 6, 2010 - 1:11:39 PM
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February Bucks
By Robert Hoague
Feb 23, 2009 - 6:58:44 AM

After the gobblers dissapeared into the trees I waited patiently and silently. Later on the sun shoved itself past the tree tops and daylight began to loose its bright edge.  In the trees in front of the blind, over a hundred yards away, some antlers caught my eye. I tried for a picture but I couldn't get focused on the buck because of all the surrounding trees. Two more bucks were tagging along behind it.

The trail the deer were on at the moment was one that passed my ground blind abour 15 yards from the right side. Between the trees and the blind was a relatively open area mostly full of tall weeds and dried grass. I got ready to take a pic, if I got the chance.

Before they left the cover of the trees they stood inside the edge and watched for any problem. Finally they were ok with everything and cleared the trees about 70 yards in front of me. I framed them up in the camera, zoomed in all I could and took a pic. The light was too low and the deer were very blurry.

I took a few more pictures but they were no better. I sat my camera down and got my binoculars. The lead buck's main beams were several inches past his ears, nice and wide. The next buck was similar but it only had one side of its rack. And the 3rd was an 8-point with long main beams that went up, but he wann't that wide, just inside his ears.

As they came closer  I noticed that the lead buck had broken main beams on both sides. The right antler had snapped off after the very long and impressive G2. The other beam was broken after the G3. There was no way to tell how many points he had started the Fall with.

When it was closer I noticed that the second buck's missing left antler was actually a broken main beam. It was about 4 inches long and the brow tine was broken off. When they got over to where I was, 25 yards to my right, a 4th buck (that I had not seen) intercepted them. An 8-point and its antlers were heavier than the others but the rack was not as wide and the tines were not as long.

Something needs to be said at this point, this is a MLD Permit hunt and bucks are off limits for me. So I was out of luck as far as shooting a buck. But in the luck in terms of seeing some impressive bucks and buck action.

The intercepting buck was on the trail the wild turkeys had used earlier and the two largest bucks fell in with it. The narrow racked buck held up and watched attentively somewhere off to my right. The three bucks stopped 10 to 15 yards from me. I was eating them up with my binoculars when I saw another deer shove its head and neck out in the middle of the pack of bucks. This deer did not have antlers. And there was enough daylight for a shot.

I BowTeched up and waited for a clear shot at this new antlerless deer.

It took a couple of steps in front of the bucks and I now had a perfectly clear broadside shot. Hmmmmmmmmmmmm.

The neck on this deer was very big around, noticably thicker than the necks of the other bucks. And it's front end was blockier and larger. Hmmmmmmm again.

What we had here was a big, mature buck that had lost both its antlers already.

I picked the binoculars back up and watched until I couldn't see them any longer.

Rick picked me up just after dark and I told him what had transpired. We ate some sandwiches and called it a day. A good day in the deer and turkey woods.

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