These seven wacky whitetails are the epitome of cactus buck syndrome.
“What in the heck” might be muttered by hunters and folks who have never seen a deer with cactus buck syndrome.
So, what is cactus buck syndrome? Cactus bucks are deer that have unbalanced testosterone levels, which causes them to retain unique globs of velvet year round. Some bucks have such low levels of testosterone that the velvet never sheds: these are sometimes called “antlered does” because their testes have often ascended up into their bodies. Others may have been accidentally castrated by a fence.
Since it’s a rare phenomenon, we’ve compiled seven photos that show cactus buck syndrome.
1. Oklahoma Cactus Buck
This buck was shot in central Oklahoma by Russell Nickel.
2. Colorado Mule Deer
This picture was taken near Montrose, Colorado.
3. Extreme Cactus Rack
The details about this buck are uncertain, but it’s definitely an extreme case of cactus buck syndrome.
4. Whitetail Cactus Antlers
This might be one of the most unique sets of “antlers” I’ve seen. It appears the buck suffered an injury on top of having cactus buck syndrome.
5. 300-inch Nevada Cactus Mule Deer
This buck dates back to 2006 deer season, when Arnold Sandoval shot this rare mule deer with a Muzzleloader in Nevada.
6. Another Oklahoma Cactus Buck
This deer was an “antlered doe,” which is one of the most common causes of cactus buck syndrome.
7. Cactus Buck with Double Droptines
This whitetail started with a normal frame of antlers, but it appears its testosterone levels went haywire as his antlers grew that year.
Have you ever seen a cactus buck in person?