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Thread: A puzzler...

  1. #1

    A puzzler...

    A mate of mine recently shot this buck in Cumbria. Pictures taken while he was halfway through cleaning off the head.

    The beast was in good overall condition and acting normally prior to shot. The injury only became apparent on skinning out the head.

    Initial thoughts were the usual poachers rimmy gone wrong. However on further reflection, we've thought otherwise. No bullet was recovered and there was no injury to the lower jaw etc as the buck could obviously feed naturally. Whatever did it must only have punctured the bone and not gone on to penetrate much deeper.

    My thoughts, given the "scrapes" both above and below the main puncture, are that the injury was inflicted by the antler of another buck.

    Any thoughts, comments, theories appreciated.

    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails IMAG0004.jpg   IMAG0012.jpg   IMAG0006.jpg  

  2. #2
    If the head was down whilst shot the bullet could have passed through the floor of the mouth and possibly exited. An Xray of the skull would likely still reveal metallic fragments if it had been shot. What diameter is the hole?

  3. #3
    It could still be a failed head shot as a bullet in that location has missed the brain on entry and might travel down, through the soft tissues, coming out between the mandibles. A sore mouth and head, but recoverable.

  4. #4
    May have been due to a murder buck?
    Knowledge is knowing that a tomato is a fruit. Wisdom is not using it in a fruit salad.

    Amateurs practice until they get it right. Professionals practice until they never get it wrong.

  5. #5
    I couldn't give an exact diameter of the hole as I don't have the head in my possession.

    I'd have thought any bullet entry would have done enough damage to prevent the animal from feeding for long enough to compromise its survival. Having said that, they are tough blighters and do seem to recover from seemingly fatal injuries.

    Any thoughts on the scrapes? I feel they lend weight to the antler theory.


  6. #6
    The two vets above will know better than me on how fresh bone could splinter like that, all I will say is I have shot a buck with a hole in a similar place but that time there was no doubt as to the cause as the tip of the other b*ggers antler was still in there! Picture taken before days of digital I'm afraid.

  7. #7
    If the head is passing by the M6 then I would be happy to xray it out of interest

  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by srvet View Post
    If the head is passing by the M6 then I would be happy to xray it out of interest

    We do pass through lancs/Cumbria on our way to d&g quite regularly. I'll have a word with him.


  9. #9
    This is a buck I shot a few years ago with what I assume is an antler puncture from fighting, very similar to your one, and does look as if the antler has splintered this is obviously older as the bone has smoothed off an fusing up
    The buck was acting normally with no sign of any problems

  10. #10
    Sorry pics didn't come up first time, the hole and position is nearly exactly the same, maybe the bone is thin or softer here
    Last edited by moose; 06-06-2015 at 09:43.

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