From the previous threads the usual argument about trophy hunting has kicked off again but I do have a serious question.
Why leave the big bucks? The argument that you shouldnt take them as they will be able to pass on their genetics doesnt really wash as whilst we leave them we are merrily knocking over cartloads of youngsters without any idea of who their father was. As such we let the magnificent old boy have his wicked way year on year until we decide he is going back we then shoot him without any knowledge whatsoever as to wether we have actually already wiped out his gene pool anyway.
What is the point of leaving a big buck to make more big bucks if we dont want to shoot big bucks anyway. I dont believe there is any evidence that a deer stock with "poor" heads is an unhealthy one. The deer look nicer but other than doing more impressive tree damage and holding a bigger territory what is the actual biological or ecological advantage? (I appreciate young bucks can do a lot of tree damage too)
I am very interested in the idea that buck heads can be dictated by female genes???? Normally there is an X and Y chromosome and the Y makes something male a pair of XXs make it female. In order to have antlers the buck has to have an Y chromosome so it would make more sense that antler quality is tied to the Y chromosome? Does dont have any Y chromosome so they are unlikely to carry on any male traits from father to future sons.
To be clear on deer management I am more excited at the start of the does season than the bucks and in general I shoot what I see as I find no purer way of taking a cross section of the population. On the other hand I always say if its got a nice "rack" then I have a bigger smile.