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Thread: Aging Roe Bucks from video?

  1. #1

    Aging Roe Bucks from video?

    Is it possible to tell the approximate age of a buck from a video. I went to check my trail cam which is in a patch of forestry on a bit of land I shoot. I was surprised to see this guy wander in front of the camera, I had not been to this area of the estate until the start of this year so don't know what he looked like last year. I can tell a yearling buck but after I have no idea how to age them. Anyone any ideas how old he might be? Hope the videos work have not tried it on here before..........


    Last edited by AlasdairM; 07-05-2014 at 10:20.

  2. #2
    Not sure, can't see the coronets which is a good indicator of age,can't see his face, can't see him walking can't see him stood upright, so not a lot to go on, I would say he was middle aged, possibly later middle age if I was pushed.

  3. #3
    SD Regular willie_gunn's Avatar
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    If you can get hold of any of G Kenneth Whitehead or Richard Prior's books the answer would be yes.

    Mostly you can tell from the size of neck, belly and general deportment - a bit like humans really Certainly it's possible to tell a youngster from an old 'un - youngsters just look, well, thin.

    I am at work at the moment but will try to grab a copy of the relevant book when I get home.

    willie_gunn
    O wad some Power the giftie gie us to see oursels as ithers see us!

  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by willie_gunn View Post
    If you can get hold of any of G Kenneth Whitehead or Richard Prior's books the answer would be yes.

    Mostly you can tell from the size of neck, belly and general deportment - a bit like humans really Certainly it's possible to tell a youngster from an old 'un - youngsters just look, well, thin.

    I am at work at the moment but will try to grab a copy of the relevant book when I get home.

    willie_gunn
    Agreed but that was my point you can see very little on the video , if you can see his stance and movement you can age him as far young, middle aged or which is all you need to know from a cull point of view,a saggy belly like in humans can be an indication of age , I would say how the neck is held rather than the size is a good indication of age, the older a buck is the lower his head and neck will be held as he walks, a really old buck will walk with his neck horizontal pretty much in line with his back.

    Antlers which is what you can see most of in the video, are not a great indicator of age though there are some clues tines become blunt in old age and from about six years onwards the outside edge of coronets start drooping becoming more pronounced with passing years.
    Last edited by bogtrotter; 07-05-2014 at 11:50.

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    SD Regular willie_gunn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bogtrotter View Post
    Agreed but that was my point you can see very little on the video.
    Then we're in danger of violent agreement

    I found the books

    Firstly "Roe Deer Management & Stalking" by Richard Prior (Roe Deer: Management and Stalking: Amazon.co.uk: Richard Prior: Books)

    To precis his comments;

    Young - light body, thin neck, legs proportionately long, weak hind-quarters
    Middle Age - thick body, straight back
    Old Age - heavy forepart, thick & short neck, strong hindquarters, almost straight line from antlers to hindquarters when walking

    On the next page he then goes on to show a photo of an old buck with a "saggy" back!

    He also has a line drawing recognition guide on page 56.

    Then in "Practical Deer-Stalking", by G Kenneth Whitehead (Practical Deer-stalking: Amazon.co.uk: G.Kenneth Whitehead: Books), he talks about the Vorberg system, which looks at facial coloration. It is probably the only time I've seen this mentioned and I can't find any information about it from a quick Google search, so I will have to dig some more.

    The only other comment I'd make is that the buck in the video has quite a pronounced sternum, which I've always presumed to be an indication of a younger buck, as when they get older it seems to become more rounded as they carry more weight.

    willie_gunn
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    SD Regular teyhan1's Avatar
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    Difficult to say on that one but as has been said body indicators are a much better clue.
    He's not a yearling ( neck too big ) and he's not old ( neck not big enough ) so he's middle aged, in the 3-5 year old range. A promising youngster.
    Give him another year or two.
    “Man surprised me most about humanity. Because he sacrifices his health in order to make money.Then he sacrifices money to recuperate his health. And then he is so anxious about the future that he does not enjoy the present; the result being that he does not live in the present or the future; he lives as if he is never going to die, and then dies having never really lived.”........Dalai Lama

  7. #7
    Looks a clean buck with comformation to him so middle age is where I would hazard a guess. you will have get a better look at him with you bins before trying to age him but its only guess work .what matters is ,is he no the cull plan or not if so then when he is dead get someone who knows what they are looking at to have a look at his teeth I believe that's the only way for sure

  8. #8
    I would go young to middle age and if it was on my patch I would leave him unless I saw better. .

  9. #9
    In clean antler and still part winter coat, must be oldish, a youngster would be in full summer coat.

  10. #10
    SD Regular willie_gunn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Marcher View Post
    In clean antler and still part winter coat, must be oldish, a youngster would be in full summer coat.
    Maybe they are in your neck of the woods, but the change hasn't reached Berkshire.

    I've yet to see any roe in full summer coat - both the young bucks I've shot in the last two weeks were still 50:50 at best. Our washing machine filter has got the deer hair to prove it!

    The yearling doe I watched with a client for 20 minutes on Tuesday evening was probably not even that.

    willie_gunn
    O wad some Power the giftie gie us to see oursels as ithers see us!

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