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Friday, October 28, 2011

Dad's Camera Trap Set continues to produce...

I have posted a few entries regarding my Father's camera trapping adventures. He has had a particularly good run as you can see here. I spent the day with him yesterday. Mother Nature joined us with a nice gift of wet sticky snow, the first of the season. We had a nice day of hunting. My highlight was a nice red fox trotting by at about 40 yards in the fresh snow.  Dad decided he wanted to adjust the placement a little so the next batch will show a different angle. I took the opportunity to make two camera sets of my own. Anyway, we checked the camera and got a few nice photos:

Ten point buck
Photo by: Jack Van Niel, 10/11
1. Ten-pointer! This is one nice deer. There is one tine there that is pretty small, but I believe it is at least an inch and therefore "countable". There have been no shortages of buck photos from this set, but many have been yearlings with thin, narrow racks. But this guy has the look of an older deer. Some people believe that the number of points on the antlers can tell the age of the deer, but the diameter of the beams and the spread of the rack are much more reliable indicators of age. More on that in future posts.

Black Bears, Fremont, NY
Photo by: Jack Van Niel, 10/11
2. Black Bears: Ahhh..... a nice family scene here. But what do I have? Two siblings? A cub in the foreground and Mom in the back (The more I look at this photo, the more I am convinced that the bear in the back is larger and an adult)? I cannot say for for sure. If they are both cubs, Mom is probably just off camera someplace. Despite the size of that lead bear, it is a cub. Cubs in New York are most likely born in January and weigh less than a pound each. At this exact same spot in June, my father took these photos of a mother and cub. I cannot say for sure we are looking at the same bears. Regardless, the cub(s) in THIS photo were that small in June. Now, in October, cubs can weigh upwards of 100 pounds. They will den with or near Mom this winter and when they emerge in the spring, they will be yearlings. I am bringing my black bear management class down in two weeks for an optional field trip. Let's hope we have some black bear photos of our own to discover.


  1. I have my buck's matched sets from yearling to five or six years I think. He was neither bred for freakishly large antlers nor overfed to max out his potential. Just lots of good natural forage foods. In case you're interested. ;)

  2. Do you mean a captive deer? I would like to see the antlers....


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