But, shed hunting unlike other forms of recreation can be regulated to reduce stress for the animals. Related: When do deer shed their antlers? Antlers shed annually, but horns stay attached and keep growing. Mark Kayser. Male black-tailed deer shed their antlers once a year between December to March to regrow them between April to August. Big game animals lose as much as 30 percent of their body weight in winter, and the loss is magnified by human pressure, exponentially so when it includes the use of loud, fast off-road vehicles and dogs trained to hunt sheds. As the popularity of hunting for antler sheds continues to rise, it’s important to bear in mind the amount of energy wildlife must expend to survive the winter, Velarde said. CASTLE ROCK, CO – MARCH 23, 2014: A mule deer shed serves as an antler hunting training tool for Bailey in Castle Rock in March. Mule deer, whitetail deer and other ungulates shed their antlers once a year. According to CPW Public Information Officer Mike Porras, shed hunters have been putting pressure on wildlife while they're most vulnerable. Deer are most likely to shed their antlers in such areas. From late December through mid-February is prime time for Missouri bucks to shed their antlers. Mule deer can shed their antlers anytime from late December to April or early May and elk generally drop their antlers in March or April, while most of the animals still are on their winter range. “Any unnecessary movement during the cold-weather months causes big game to use up their fat stores very quickly, and there’s little chance of replenishing it,” said area wildlife manager Perry Will of Glenwood Springs. It can take as little as 24-48 hours for the antlers to actually fall off, but the shedding process takes between two to three weeks and then new antlers will regenerate throughout the summer.. It is referred to as shed hunting, so take a hunt-like approach to searching for them. Moose are the first to drop the weight. Be meticulous and systematic in order to increase your shed hunting success. Colorado: On public lands in the Gunnison Basin (big game management units 54, 55, 551, 66 and 67), collection of shed antlers was prohibited from Jan. 1 through March 14. Hunting for whitetail shed antlers dominates the antler scene, but like dreaming about a western elk hunt, shed antler fanatics consider hunting for elk and mule deer shed antlers a bucket-list adventure. Latest. CASTLE ROCK, CO – MARCH 23, 2014: A mule deer shed serves as an antler hunting training tool for Bailey in Castle Rock in March. Because of the popularity of mule deer antlers, increasing numbers of collectors are taking to the ˚ eld earlier in the year during and immediately a˜ er antlers are shed to collect the largest antlers ahead of others. 0 0. their antlers and ending in June with shed antler collection. Do be conscious, though, of animal stress, and avoid disturbing deeryards: the dense, evergreen forest stands in which they congregate. Mule deer bucks begin to strip off their velvet in mid-September with all the velvet usually off by the first of October. Colorado Parks and Wildlife crack down on illegal antler collecting, Authorities still in search for suspect, Palisade Rim Trail opens back up to the public, Alleged armed robbery suspect in custody, says GJPD, Mesa County Clerk and Recorder tweets voting machines could be manipulated, Mesa County Public Health launches COVID-19 vaccine dashboard, City of Grand Junction officially recognizing January 18th as Martin Luther King Jr. Day, Mesa Theater fundraising for bills amid the pandemic, Breakdown of the COVID-19 virus in Colorado, CPW: Collection and Possession of Shed Antlers. Every year, whitetail deer, mule deer, elk and various other hoofed mammals shed their antlers. I have seen bucks that have shed their antlers in early December, and at the other extreme, I once observed a large 9-point still holding his antlers in early April. Since deer would typically drop their antlers in a feeding area during the night, you’d have a great chance at finding a fresh deer … So is antler drop. Mule and white-tailed deer start dropping their antlers in mid-December, but some don’t shed until early April. We need to remember these were controlled conditions and these findings won’t predict when deer will shed their antlers in wild conditions. Antler growth and development is dependent on the photoperiod (hours of daylight per day) and testosterone levels, not temperature. This brown soft material covers the deer's entire antlers and provides a constant blood supply to the antlers during growth. The key thing to remember is that elk typically shed their antlers much later in the Spring than deer, so it is important to pay attention to snow accumulation. 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