Oh my gosh - another buck has shed an antler and left it in our field! This one is from a buck I named "Crater" because I noticed he had a hole in one of his antlers.
I love starting out a morning like this. As my usual morning ritual, I grabbed the binoculars and scanned the field but did not see any shed antlers. Then about 3 hours later I was just walking past the window and noticed two sharp brown smooth objects sticking up out of the snow. I grabbed my coat, camera in hand, motioned for Ruger to follow and out we went to investigate. Ruger got to the spot before me and sure enough there laid one of Crater's Antlers. I backed Ruger off so that I might take a photo of it as it had been left. Then I asked Ruger to carry it to the house and away he proudly went with our new treasure.
Oddly enough the hole in Crater's antler is much like one in an antler that was left in our field last season (Dec 2007) by a different and older buck. I've taken a photo of the two antlers to show (below this paragraph). In looking up antler development I found that "injury or damage to the pedicle or velvet may result in the injured antler becoming deformed. An injury to the body can also influence antler growth because energy is used to grow or repair muscle or tissue before it is used to grow antler. Sometimes, a severe injury to the body may result in stunted growth or deformity of the antler opposite side of the body that sustained the injury due to a phenomenon known as bilateral or geo-physical asymmetry." (Source of last statement here). I did not see any mention of a ‘hole’ in antler particular but I would call it abnormal or deformed. If anyone has knowledge or opinion as to how or why ‘holes’ in antlers happen, please feel free to leave a comment at the bottom of this post. Just click on the underlined word comment.
Antler Fact: Antlers are incorrectly called “horns” yet they are very different. Antlers grow from the tip and are shed every year while horns grow from the base and grow for the entire life of the animal.Enjoy your day! :) Coppertop