By Tom Cross –
Twenty-one year old Lane Williams of West Union bagged an unusual trophy when he harvested an 18-point “antlered” doe on Monday evening Dec. 11 near West Union. Lane spotted the unusual antlered specimen from trail camera pics shortly after gun season closed but had no idea it was a doe. It doesn’t happen very often but it does occur occasionally in nature and reports of antlered does are rare but not unheard of.
Williams had pictures of the deer nearly every evening for a week prior to him harvesting it. Interestingly, even though it was antlered it was always in the company of other does according to Williams.
“It came in with 11 does the evening I harvested it and it was the biggest deer in the bunch.”
Williams took the “buck” at 44 yards with his Mathews compound bow, the large deer dropping within 20 yards of the shot.
“Upon retrieving the deer I noticed the “buck” was missing its testicles and had teats like a doe and the rack was still in velvet,” said a surprised Williams. “I counted 18 points on the rack with most points around the base of the antlers and two small drop tines of the left antler”.
The huge doe Williams estimates weighed around 225 lbs. That’s well over 100 pounds what an average doe will normally weigh.
The big doe was tagged as an antlered buck and delivered to the butcher shop. Williams hasn’t decided what to do with the unusual velvet rack yet.
According to biologists, antlered does do not shed their antlers like a normal buck and instead keep their antlers which continue to grow and remain covered in velvet for the life of the deer.
“It was a once in a lifetime harvest and I was very happy to take it,” said Williams
The weekend of Dec. 16-17 was Ohio’s “Bonus” deer gun season with hunters bagging 14,115 deer statewide. Again, good weather across most of the state helped. In Adams County hunters took 203 deer, Brown County harvested 172 deer., and Highland County hunters tagged 191 deer. Pike County had 114 deer tagged and Scioto County had 184 deer checked. Next up is statewide muzzleloader season set for Jan. 6-9. Archery season continues until Feb.