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The deer in SE Indiana are shedding antlers already. My neighbor runs a trap line and between him and his buddy they have found 8 sheds already. He showed me one he found today that was still pink in the center. None of us ever remember bucks losing antlers this early.
Any ideas as to what causes an early shed?
-Dan- ;)
 

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Hey Dan, Funny you should ask. I was out shining a couple weeks ago and saw a group of deer near the road. I first thought I was looking at a huge doe when I noticed the huge neck on this deer that was obviously a buck that had shed his rack already. You couldn't mistake this buck because of the way he ran,acted ,etc. I also saw a group of three bucks the other night just before dark and one of the three had already dropped his rack.

Normally, a deer will shed its rack within 2-3 days, on the same day every year...unless: They aren't taking in nutrition, or there is a very stressful period. Whitetails go through 2 stress periods every year. The first one is late summer and the other is old man winter. I'd say that although it has been cold, deer have been eating O.K. I'd scratch out the nutrition factor. Based on what I've learned over the years I would have to say that early arctic blast that gripped the entire midwest this year is the culprit. When antlers freeze it speeds up the process; couple this with the fact that we had a big snow and that the bucks were rutting right up to the big chill. The rut itself is very stressful for bucks too...and that is what I think explains it.
 

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.....well at least around here some of the bucks still have their headgear...i saw one up close and personal this morning driving into work...he almost ran across the hood of my car...it was a 4 pointer.

treehugger
 

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still on

I just saw saturday night two different bucks on the farm I hunt in Owen Co. with antlers still on. My buddy and I have pics of bucks with antlers on in late February and early March (no joke). We have also seen some that lose them as early as January, bust most keep them until February.
 

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I've seen four different bucks ine the last week and all but one had their racks. One only had half of a rack.
 
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