New regulations limit shed antler collection in Colorado CASTLE ROCK, CO – MARCH 23, 2014: A mule deer shed serves as an antler hunting training tool for Bailey in Castle Rock … The antler breaks at the base near the skull. Thermal Bedding Cover. For tips on tackling the tackle box, restock what you’ll need for future fishing trips, and use your downtime to clean, inventory, restock, and organize. It’s really up to Mother Nature when the antler drop occurs, but if you’re lucky occasionally both antlers drop near one another, deer and elk. Saturday, February 25, 2006. Lace up, slide down and cover more ground for a look if you deem it safe. Adequate fencing to exclude deer is the only sure way to control deer damage. The first Estes Valley settlers in the early 1860's found a moderately abundant mule deer numbers. Food Levels Can Influence Antler Shedding I trust my Cabela’s Meindl Perfekt boots to get me in and out. However, most of the places where we hunt, we get the smaller Canada geese. Wyoming. Fencing. Like whitetail deer, elk and mule deer shed their antlers via a combination of factors. You may still pick up shed antlers that have a rounded base aren't attached. Mule deer are commonly seen browsing in open, shrubby areas between dusk and dawn. Having lost his protective headgear, a buck has obvious survival advantages in being a member of a bachelor group . Mature Whitetail Bucks: Why Don’t I See More? Do mullies shed the same time as whitetail? Today several hundred mule deer reside in the park areas and their population is believed to be stable or increasing. My third favorite place to hunt waterfowl is my home state of Kentucky. Beer and beef broth add great flavors to any stew. The two species shed their antlers in a different time frame. Mule deer shed their antlers from January into March. Lastly, you may need to put your binoculars aside and snoop like on whitetail properties for shed antlers thick vegetation. Both whitetail and mule deer bucks, and moose and elk, lose their antlers during winter, typically in January and into February, though occasionally these big game animals are seen with antlers still intact in late March or even early April. Beef broth is just as easy to use and makes a great foundation to add moisture to stew. Sagebrush, mountain mahogany, scrub oak, thick junipers and even stands of cholla cactus could hide elk and mule deer antlers. Bucks locate a willing doe and discourage other competitors until mating occurs. All deer species shed their antlers in winter, after a sustained drop in testosterone ends their life cycle. They shed antlers in mid-February and their next set begins to grow immediately after. That’s appealing since a big elk antler may weigh nine pounds netting you more than $120 for just one antler. Mule deer bucks usually shed their antlers in February or March of each year. Fawns begin accompanying their mother within a few weeks. Stress, particularly from winter and predation, influences animals to drop their antlers earlier than normal, especially under severe conditions. One noted biologist believes that the shedding time for antlers is directly tied into the individual buck’s antler cycle. Most shed hunters use the antlers in craft or home décor projects or sell them to craftsmen for similar projects. If you do find a single, large elk or mule deer antler, spend a few extra minutes gridding the area. They can be three feet tall at the shoulder and weigh anywhere between 100 and 300 pounds. Barely peeking out of a fresh crust of snow, two tiny tines were reaching out toward the sky. You also need to outfit yourself with a durable and comfortable pack. Antlers are dropped, or cast, and grow back over a period of months while covered in a furry skin called velvet. In most northern latitudes, north-facing slopes are always defined by deep snow. Fencing may be required. Mule deer play an important role in the wildlife food chain. By Keith Allen. Though given an interesting name, the black-tailed deer is considered as the least studied deer species of North America. Mule deer became so scarce throughout Colorado that in 1913, a statewide hunting ban was put into effect. Mule deer are very common throughout the western United States. But it didn't need to either. Sep 5, 2020 - Explore Eddie Raley's board "Shed antlers" on Pinterest. The youngsters do not have an obvious odor that would give them away to predators. Since deer would typically drop their antlers in a feeding area during the night, you’d have a great chance at finding a fresh deer antler before anyone else if you’re up against other public land shed hunters. So, you want to thermal hog hunt? My favorite optic to carry is the Nikon Monarch HG10x42 with enough power to pick apart the landscape when looking for antlers. (970) 586-1206 State game managers are also helpful in pointing out other winter preferences for elk and mule deer if you wish to avoid a Boston Marathon shed antler hunt. Then I go to Illinois and next Kentucky, Arkansas and Tennessee. Research regions characterized by minimal snow and feeding areas for the animals. Their antlers are shed, and the bucks become much less aggressive, and bachelor groups form again. MDF is dedicated to the following goals: To restore, improve and protect mule deer habitat (including land and easement acquisitions) resulting in self-sustaining, healthy, free ranging and huntable deer populations. According to Dr. Valerius Geist, the first black-tailed deer came into existence around 2 million years ago. I assume the answer is the same time as whitetail (February/March) but I don't KNOW the answer. When growth is complete the velvet is rubbed off and the antler is described as clean. Elk, on the other hand, begin shedding their antlers in March through April, although it can occur as early as mid-February. Females are called does and do not have antlers. As March snow melts away, an off-season activity that many deer hunters pursue is looking for shed antlers. Unfortunately several also fall victim each year to a mechanized predator, the automobile. Every year, whitetail deer, mule deer, elk and various other hoofed mammals shed their antlers. I really believe and know, at least in my house, they're the same philosophy. Studies from Specimen Mountain in the park indicated shrubs comprised 73 percent of the animal's diet, with broad-leafed herbs an additional 26 percent. The largest and heaviest mule deer tend to be found in northern locations such as Ontario and Minnesota. It needs enough room for water, lunch, rain gear, survival gear and first aid. The best place for the giant Canadas is northern Illinois. I have a home place not far from the house that ducks like. Mark Kayser shares a unique tip on how to determine when elk in your region are beginning to shed their antlers. The key thing to remember is that elk typically shed their antlers much later in the Spring than deer, so it is important to pay attention to snow accumulation. You can nudge them slightly in your favor by minimizing disturbance and maximizing the ability of your property to attract and hold more and older deer. Elk antlers could fetch you anywhere from $12 to $15 per pound. They live in a multi-generation family of related females and their offspring. Hunting for elk and mule deer sheds is a surefire way to enjoy western scenery in a personal manner, and possibly pick up more bone than you ever imagined. As most big-game hunters know well, elk are from the Cervidae family—ruminant animals that include moose, deer and caribou. The deer antler shed will take two to three week before full completion. The best advice for any Western shed antler hunter is to spend wisely on good optics. The male deer sheds them between January and April, when they no longer need them to attract mates or fight for mates. Please read on as I dive into the nuts and bolts of some must-have items. Learn tips and strategies for scouting and finding shed antlers. It should also have ample areas to lash antlers. Avoid them if the ascent looks dangerous, but steep topography and ravines cause jarring and jolting, both of which can make an animal drop an antler in an abyss. Depending on the region, mule deer shed their antlers between late winter and early spring. They are the primary prey of mountain lions. Antlers are shed each year in January or early February after the breeding season. Shed hunting is a great way to cure those post-season blues. This is where the deer bed when the weather is windy, the snow is blowing or it’s overcast. The mule deer (Odocoileus hemionus) is a deer indigenous to western North America; it is named for its ears, which are large like those of the mule.Two subspecies of mule deer are grouped into the black-tailed deer.. These deer would generally be considered trophy-size. Exhausted by the rut, many bucks fail to survive the winter. Agricultural Field/Food Plot. Shed hunting offers outdoorsmen a winter or spring opportunity to take to the field. In much of the Midwest, corn and soybean fields are king when it comes to deer nutrition. A growing population of people, predators and the often harsh elements took huge numbers of the animals. Shortly after shedding, the bucks begin growing new antlers. Even so, elk and mule deer country can be harsh and testing so plan accordingly. Tubes may not, however, protect trunks from damage when bucks use the trees to scrape the velvet off their antlers. LockerSource and Mossy Oak are proud to introduce a new locker line that features four different Mossy Oak patterns for the outdoor enthusiast to enjoy. These trails undoubtedly lead to open areas for feed, but don’t overlook where the trail disappears into timber. Although either species has no aversion to pioneering a new route, the path of least resistance does have appeal and trails are carved into mountain sides from eons of use. Antlers are covered with velvety skin until fully formed, when the buck scrapes this layer off. Many possibilities exist, including using them to decorate a home or yard. Antler prices have risen in recent years. To speed up your antler discoveries begin by following big game trails. Colorado prohibits shed hunting from Jan. 1 to April 30 west of I-25. The other side is likely close. A buck will usually drop each of the antlers several days apart, it is rare for both to fall at the same time. A mild Spring caused the elk to move back up to higher areas of the mountains during the time that the majority of shedding … Black-tailed deer are referred to as the “Ghost of the Pacific” for their ability to move unheard and unseen through the thick rainforests of the Pacific Coast. This has been in place since 2009. Many of these areas have been allotted refuge status with no human access until spring arrives. It’s possible they’ll winter up to 1,000 feet lower in elevation depending on the winter range. When many novices to deer hunting find out about hunting for discarded antlers in the offseason, the first question they ask themselves is when do deer shed their antlers? Oct 20, 2020 #2 W. … It’s really up to Mother Nature when the antler drop occurs, but if you’re lucky occasionally both antlers drop near one another, deer and elk. In parts of the West, antler hunting occurs on a daily basis beginning in November with photographers or people scouting big bucks and their antlers and ending in June with shed antler collection. They break into smaller groups again by the next summer. They are named for their oversized ears that resemble a mule's ears. Bucks 3 1/2 years or older will shed their antlers faster than bucks who are 2 1/2 years old or younger. Males, called bucks, have forked antlers. In late summer and fall, mixed family groups form larger groups that stay together for protection throughout the winter. Thread starter 42769vette; Start date Oct 20, 2020; Oct 20, 2020 #1 4. Searching for shed antlers and/or hunting bucks without a gun when the season is over will help you compile the most complete information about the whereabouts of deer on your hunting property. This past Winter, snowfall was heavy in December, January, and February but March and April were mild with very little accumulation. This was enacted in 2018 to protect wildlife from additional stress. The purpose of the Mule Deer Foundation is to ensure the conservation of mule deer, black-tailed deer and their habitat. It's also prohibited from March 15 to May 15, sunset to 10a.m. The five British deer species which carry antlers replace them every year. How to Hunt Elk in Colorado on Public Land. Cremeans hunts for elk, blacktail deer, mule deer, hogs. Every winter, deer bucks and elk bulls shed their antlers. They shed antlers in mid-February and their next set begins to grow immediately after. They have excellent hearing and eyesight that warns them of approaching dangers. However, in areas with large deer populations, the deer tend to shed their antlers earlier and in most cases in mid-December. What to do with shed antlers? Remember, elk shed their antlers nearly a month later than deer. Recorded Trail Ridge Road status: (970) 586-1222. Through winter, the Information Office is open 8:00 am–4:30 pm Mon–Fri. Deer antler prices have been fluctuating between $8 and $12 per pound in recent years. With large bull elk the phenomena seems more commonplace. It’s possibly due to the heavier weight of an elk antler and the lopsided feeling that comes from carrying just one antler. Wyoming prohibits shed hunting from Jan. 1 to April 30 on public lands west of the continental divide. Females are called does and do not have antlers. They carry their horns for life. My average day is a 12-mile round trip hike. Montana Older animals tend to cast and clean their antlers first. After finding some antlers, some of which can be quite large, the next step is deciding what to do with the prize. GameKeepers are Wildlife Managers, Not Just Hunters, International Shed Hunting with the ScentBlocker Pros, Why Look for Shed Deer Antlers During Turkey Season, Tackling the Tackle Box: Restocking What You’ll Need for Future Fishing Trips. Mossy Oak ProStaffer Parrey Cremeans is the owner of Just For Hunting. Deer and elk shed their antlers each year in late winter to early spring. LockerSource Features Four Different Mossy Oak Designs on NEW Lockers, Kentucky Is a Top Pick for Hunting Waterfowl for McKnight, 9 New Year’s Resolutions for Hunters and Anglers, Richie McKnight - the Travelling Waterfowl Hunter, To Rattle or Not to Rattle During the Post-Rut in the North. This velvet has blood vessels to help the antlers grow. State game and fish agencies even manage these areas realizing that the ungulates visit them annually. I don’t rattle during the post-rut. It’s a way of life for people who just enjoy seeing wildlife, especially close to home. Don’t let the elevation factor scare you away. In addition, to further protect the Gunnison sage-grouse, the new regulations include a time-of-day closure in the Gunnison Basin May 1 - 15 from sunset to 10 a.m. Mule deer bucks at the heaviest range can weigh as much as 450 pounds or more. There are additional restrictions on the Gunnison Basin. Across Colorado elk, moose and deer are all beginning to shed their antlers. Deer that inhabit the hot Southern States have to wait until the beginning of March to lose their antlers. Antlers. Colorado - In Game Management Units 54, 55, 551, 66 and 67, the Fish and Game office prohibits hunting antler sheds from January 1 to March 14 annually. Recorded Trail Ridge Road status: (970) 586-1222. This outfitting company out of Redding, California, hunts on 35,000 acres in northern California and guides on thousands more acres of public land. It’s no secret that most of us who hunt love antlers, and the ability to collect them without expending a single round or tag is an alluring prospect and quite easy if you get out at the right time. Deer shed their antlers annually. Focus on white objects and partial tips protruding from brush or grass. Most have a posted opening date that attracts local and visiting shed hunters alike. It’s amazing how many antlers you can discover simply by looking down slopes or across canyons. They don’t participate in the seasonal rituals of normal bucks. Cryptorchid bucks are different. in 1930, an estimated 2,500 roamed the park. Antler or "Shed" Hunting My brother-in-law James turned me onto a fun and potentially profitable activity called shed hunting. I usually start off each waterfowl season hunting in Alberta, Canada, in October. When do mule deer shed? Depending on the area you target, oftentimes you’ll find mule deer antlers one level below where you’ll find elk antlers. The dedication of Rocky Mountain National Park in 1915 and subsequent removal of wolves resulted in a dramatic increase in the mule deer population. Gathering these trophies from the ground is known as "shed hunting." Bucks run off prospective suitors through threatening body postures or engaging in violent jousting contests using their impressive racks as weapons. In these areas, the antler shedding season can run from early March to mid-April. The conventional deer-proof fence is 8 feet high and made of woven wire. Specifically in eastern Colorado/western Kansas? The New Year is an excellent opportunity to reassess your old routines and inject them with some new life. The antler market fluctuates like the Dow Jones Industrials, but artisans, dog-chew companies, collectors and others purchase antlers on a regular basis. 42769vette Junior Member. Sturdy, leather hiking boots and a hiking staff is a must. Wintering wildlife, mule deer in particular, are very susceptible to any kind of disturbance whether it is from passing cars, domestic dogs or innocent shed hunters in late winter and early spring. I hollered loudly for my dad and sons - similar to how I get everyone's attention when the first morel mushroom of the season has. I divide the bedding areas into two categories, the first is thermal cover and it’s usually the snarliest, nasty thicket within a quarter mile of the food source. Antlers are pure bone, and grow larger year after year after the animal has shed Antler Velvet – After deer shed their antlers, they quickly begin to grow them back. Again, follow the path of least resistance and look for any antlers dropped along the route. Their new set of antlers grows with a cover of skin, called velvet. I follow the duck migration. In 1895, according to one report, very few mule deer were seen in the Estes Park region and continued into the beginning of the twentieth century. Hunting for whitetail shed antlers dominates the antler scene, but like dreaming about a western elk hunt, shed antler fanatics consider hunting for elk and mule deer shed antlers a bucket-list adventure. Through winter, the Information Office is open 8:00 am–4:30 pm Mon–Fri. Several months later, the animals regrow their antlers from spring through late summer. When rumors began to emerge this past Fall that shed hunting in Colorado was going to be pushed back to May, I didn’t really know what to think. This recipe can be made with roasted or smoked pheasant. I'll never forget the sight. Related: When do deer shed their antlers? Compared to its cousin, the white-tailed deer, mule deer are larger in size, and have a black-tipped white tail and white patch on the rump. Although elk and mule deer definitely look for elevated hideouts when seeking winter refuge, they also gravitate toward large mesas, and sagebrush basins. Than bucks who are 2 1/2 years or older will shed their antlers craft. You also need to put your binoculars aside and snoop like on whitetail properties shed. In April and reach their full potential by August flavors to any stew 970. Craftsmen for similar projects pounds or more browsing in open, shrubby areas between dusk and dawn just... 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By deep snow a multi-generation family of related females and their population is believed to stable. Best advice for any western shed antler hunter is to drop earlier United States and strategies for scouting and shed... Nuts and bolts of some must-have items, large elk or mule shed... Complete, the Information Office is open 8:00 am–4:30 pm Mon–Fri boots and a hiking staff a. Base near the skull is the only sure way to cure those post-season blues are! The best place for the right time of year the Cervidae family—ruminant animals that typically stay in.!