Learning how to age a buck is a fundamental part of deer hunting.
As deer hunters, we all face the same question as we look at a buck through our scopes, bow pins, and sights; how big is it?
Seeing a giant rack is one way to age a buck, but there is a lot more to it than that.
If you are strictly a meat hunter, then the age of the deer doesn't really matter. If you are into deer conservation and eating venison, then aging a buck is what you do every time before you pull the trigger.
This graphic visually shows 10 tricks that really break down what you are looking for to accurately age a deer.
Each bullet point gives you one more clue to age the buck you are looking at. Does it look like a doe with antlers? How big is the neck? Are the antlers thin?
How about the front of the deer versus the back? Are they flat, thin, or wide? Maybe the chest is heavier? Burn the above pictures in your memory. The next time you see a buck, hopefully they will stand out.
For another quick example, see below.
Make a little more sense now? Ultimately, the decision to pull the trigger is always up to you and your hunting style, as well as what you are hunting for. As it was written above, if you are hunting for meat, who cares.
However, if you are hunting for the future of the deer population on your property, then you better study these pictures.