June 14, 2024

Article Written by Marc Anthony, nontypicalhunter.com

I’ve been tracking a few monsters in the last couple of years, some of which are fairly young and have many years ahead of them before going down hill. After reviewing my latest trail camera pictures, I’ve noticed several of them have not grown at all this year. Much to my surprise, I’ve also spoken with several individuals across the state who are getting the same results on their cameras too!

After speaking with several other people regarding this phenomenon, someone suggested that this year’s drought may have something to do with it. Looking back, last year we also experienced a drought but I din’t notice any shrinkage at all. Could 2 years of drought have an effect on them?

In my research, it’s been about a draw. Some believe a dry year can affect antler growth an an equal amount say; not so. So I researched a little deeper and basically, they’re both correct! That answer pretty much takes us back to the starting point.

It appears, stress and nutrition are leading causes of growth control for whitetail antlers, in addition to body weight and their general health. Animals that have endured months of stressful living, have grown smaller body weights and antlers too! Add the lack of water to the equation, and you’ll have a stressful situation in most cases. I must point out that many animals have adjusted to drought-like conditions and have learned to live and manage stressful situations without too much damage to their body. So I would assume, it depends on the animal itself!

Anyone else seeing smaller than expected antler growth in your areas? I would love to know!

Off the subject, I’ve been reviewing more and more products recently and have even added outdoor services to my reviews. Most are good and a few are, well, less than good. I even reviewed an outfitter this month and was pleasantly surprised. This is something I have never done before. I even stuck a doe on video from the ground while I was there. I never expected to happen like it did because I was just setting up and didn’t even have a chance to get my face mask on before 2 does spotted me while I was getting situated. I didn’t have a chance to turn the camera into her, but I stuck her anyway and the camera caught her running with my arrow in her brisket. Nothing like a head-on shot while she was trying to figure out what I was! If you listen very carefully in the first 10 seconds of the video, you can hear her blow at me! Here’s the video: Doe from ground.

I know the season is in full swing but it’s always nice knowing there’s more products out there than are worth using and some that aren’t! If you’re interested in one of the few outfitters I would ever recommend here in Illinois, here’s a link to that: Outfitter.

I’ve got some big heads in my studio coming in already, so the action is getting started! Good luck out there and hunt hard!!!