By Richard Prior
Thursday, 30 August 2012
I wonder if Richard Prior could cast his professional eye over the attached photo? Is this a good cull beast (pictured, above)?
I assumed it was going back, but it is short in the nose. However, could this be due to a swollen neck?
This is an interesting query. I assume the buck was shot in or near the rut, thus accounting for its swollen neck.
To judge by the short pedicles it appears to be old, and this is reinforced by the rather heavy, overhanging eyebrows.
The profile is distinctly Roman, which usually indicates a south country buck.
The face colour — greying but not in a defined area — is also an indication that the animal was not young.
I also have a totally unproven theory that antlers which turn in at the top, such as these, are often grown by a buck in later life.
There is, however, no sign of silvering of the lower limbs or swelling knee joints, often signals of extreme age.
If a mature trophy buck remained on my deer stalking plan for the year I would be happy to select such a one as this which was showing, as far as judging the age of live roe can be trusted, that it was probably past middle age.
I think you were right to cull this beast.
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