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Thread: Is this disease?

  1. #1

    Is this disease?

    I had a brilliant stalk this afternoon. Managed to get very close to a herd of fallow in dense woodland. I would take one step, they would take five but they would not bolt! I had several animals in the cross hairs, but there would either be another animal behind them or I was not sure of the back stop. Eventually they had enough of me and dissapeared.

    On my way back and as it was getting dark I spotted a lone doe which I stalked and took. It was a big animal in good condition and packed with fat! All the glands were fine, but amongst the fat there were numerous black spots (see photo). They were about 3mm and spherical or oval. They were soft, almost like a gelatinous blood blister.

    Does anyone know what they were?
    I have also attached a photo of the teeth. I am not sure how to age deer from looking at the teeth, so some help would be appreciated.


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  2. #2
    No Peri, not disease, perfectly normal.

    Other than tooth eruption for a yearling ageing by teeth is only accurate by sectioning and polishing a tooth and counting the layers like the rings on a tree. Tooth wear is dependant on the local conditions ie deer on sandy soils browsing Heather will wear quicker than animals on calcium rich soils grazing arable.


  3. #3
    Many thanks Nick,

    I didn't think it was disease but is always better to check with those that are more experianced.


  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by NickJ View Post
    No Peri, not disease, perfectly normal.

    Hi Nick could you explain what this is as I've also never seen this before?


    My Hunting Blog: click here

  5. #5
    It probably is normal, however, what did the spleen look like?

    Is the brown mass top left a lymph node? Looks like it.

  6. #6
    As said, to be more accurate with ageing knowledge of the local area is needed. I would take a guess though looking at those teeth I would say she was fairly young.
    Last edited by Tackleberry270; 21-02-2012 at 22:42.

  7. #7
    The spleen as well as the other organs were fine.

    Yes that is a lymph on the top right.

    The ground is mixed forest on chalk surrounded with arable. I have had two fallow from there so far and they both had a lot of fat in them, so it must be easy life for them in the warm south.

  8. #8
    HI , Nothing to worry about, what you have seen are called Haem lymph nodes and are perfectly normal , see them all the time at work (meat inspector ).
    atb Brian

  9. #9
    If you want to estimate the age of the animal you have shot then you need to look at the teeth on the lower jaw. All deer are born with 3 milk teeth and two permanent or adult teeth these are premolars 1,2 and 3 the third premolars having 3 crowns or cusps. The next two teeth are permanent molars with the last molar growing in the jaw waiting for the jaw to lengthen to accommodate the last tooth, in Roe the adult teeth are present from between 12 and 14 months in Fallow about 13 months.
    If you save all the lower jaws from the animals you cull you can make up a jaw board from fawn to say 10 years old and by comparing the teeth this will give you a good estimate of the age of animal you have shot.
    As Nickj says the only way to get a true age is by tooth sectioning, polishing and then counting the rings of dentine.

  10. #10
    As NickJ has said the only truly accurate way of ageing an animal is by a cross section of the the teeth, But as giveittheother said, there are developmental signs that will give an approximate age.

    A very good book that details this is Donald and Norma Chapman's book "Fallow Deer". Chapter 6 is all about teeth and age estimation. Appendix III gives a year by year description of the development of the lower jaw in bucks up tp 11 years old and has a plate showing a jaw board, so you can see the differences in jaw development in different aged animals . Very good book, full of usefull information.

    Last edited by British Shooting Services; 26-02-2012 at 08:22. Reason: spelling?

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