My trophy buck

I am not a hunter — couldn’t be actually.  But I do enjoy stalking animals to get their photos.  In this case, I was actually stalking a Pileated Woodpecker that I saw visit one of the bird feeders for just a few seconds.  The dang bird flew off before I could even locate my camera, much less snap a quick photo.  So, I went of in search of…and in the process I startled the deer herd in the way back backyard.  I haven’t seen much of them lately so I gave up on the woodpecker and decided to try to creep up on the deer instead.

As I was making my way stealthily (i.e., as quietly as possible) through the woods, I suddenly spotted this buck looking at me.  He didn’t run away, so we had a stare-down for several minutes while he decided whether I was dangerous or not.

I kept angling for a better shot, creeping from tree to tree, but there wasn’t one — too many branches between him and me.

And then, suddenly he grew bolder, and decided to challenge me.  He walked at least 30 feet right toward me and started stamping his feet.  At this point I actually had to unzoom the telephoto because all I could see was his head.  And what a magnificent head it was.  Wow, look at the size of that neck!

Both males and females engage in foot-stomping, as a prelude to aggression.  I would have been worried he would charge (like bull moose do), but there were too many trees in the way for him to get me.

Finally, he got bored with my camera clicking and wandered off to meet up with a couple of does.  Although I was hoping there might be some “action” there, nothing transpired.  The most interesting thing the buck did was chase a little half-grown youngster.  He was pretty good at posing for the camera, though.

This is my 10-point buck trophy head.

16 thoughts on “My trophy buck

  1. WOW! What wonderful photos, Sue, and what a great story. (You hunt like I do!) The pictures are just gorgeous, and I can only imagine how exciting it would be to have an encounter like that. Thanks so much for sharing it. He’s a beauty, all right!

  2. Yeah, that was a lot of fun. It’s a weird feeling when you try to sneak up on something, only to find that they are watching you, rather than vice versa.

    • I love that he was going to defy you, too. (Of course, I understand that could have been dangerous had there not been so many trees in the way, so I’m glad it happened when you were safe.) The expression on his face in that third picture is wonderful! Good stuff!

  3. Wonderful shots, Sue. I don’t often seen deer, and when I do it’s usually their back sides as they run in the opposite direction. I don’t know much about deer, but that buck is mighty impressive.

  4. Thanks, Mike. This was a very special meeting–I don’t usually get to see these big bucks more than once a season. Maybe this guy will stick around this winter, but I doubt there is enough food back there.

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