« NJ Big-Buck Wall of Fame | Main | ALERT: Is Your Deer Meat Contaminated with Lead? »

March 27, 2008


Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.

Monster alert, pretty buck!

Glad it is spring but can't wait til season comes back!! Nice buck


You didn't get drawn last year? I knew you hunted Iowa in 2006 and I thought you went last year too.

Great buck! The soil in Iowa is amazing stuff. The mineral content in the food that comes from it definetly helps grow these Iowa deer into giants.


WOW.......would love to see a pic from the side....would definitely rattle a guy

awesome huge deer

Those would make some nice rattling antlers LOL! Just kidding, that is a awsome monster! Just to see that animal on the hoof woud make me shake in my boots. I've never hunted Iowa yet but am looking forward to doing so asap!

how does the proccess work for drawing a tag in Iowa is it on a point system like bear hunting here in wisconsin or is it random drawing?

ian, a non-resident puts in for the shotgun draw in June; most of the time you won't draw year one, but you get a preference point that almost assures you'll get a tag the second year.

Mike, I have talked to guys that didn't draw even in their second year, but many who have. I did get drawn in my second year in 2005. In 2006 I tried drawing in group setting, but didn't get one. Then in 2007, my buddy and I tried drawing together, but individually. Well, my partner got drawn, but I didn't. Then the DNR lady told me I should have tried to get one as a group. Go figure...

The reason Iowa produces so many giant bucks when compared to Indiana is that it's post rut firearms season allows many more bucks to mature another year, or two, or three. When you compound this fact over a span of many years you have the formula for the production of many giants. ANyone who has hunted in Iowa can attest to how awesome it is.

If Indiana adopted that type of firearms season, and Iowa adopted Indiana's November Rut gun season, the composition of each states' herd would switch over time.

The Ultimate 4 Big Buck States today are Iowa, Illinois, Kansas, and Ohio. Each state has either 1) a shortened rut gun hunt, or 2) a post rut gun hunt (or a combination of the 2).

Every hunter who hasn't experienced a properly managed herd, in which buck:doe ratios are tight like nature intended for them to be, and in which all age classes of bucks are well represented, should travel to any one of the states above to see how every states hunting should be.

Iowa rocks. The buck above is one of many giants that state has produced over the years. Thanks to a post rut gun season. Iowa's bucks can breed all the does during the entire month of November and not have to worry about the orange army.

Congratulations to STeve and his brother. You guys are hunting a herd not seen in many other places. You guys should be very thankful of what you have out there. Kudos!

about the soil comment(s) (i see others like it on other posts about Iowa). There is no doubt that soil is the reason for good crops and good healthy deer, but i don't think people should feel they can use it for an excuse for there not being monsters in a lot of other areas. in most of the areas us whitetail nuts are from the soil/resources are good enough to produce big stud bucks. if enough bucks are allowed to make it to maturity, then there'll be some gaggers running around (unless the area is exceptionally poor).


Obviously age is huge factor in growing big bucks. But if you look @ the average 2 1/2 year old buck in Iowa and the average 2 1/2 year old buck in Indiana there is a huge difference in both body size and rack size.

There's more to growing big racks and bodies than simply time and short gun seasons (contrary to popular belief). Nutrition and genetics have a bit of a say in the whole equation as well.


The gap between antler and body size in Iowa as compared to Indiana narrows with maturity. Iowa has the equation, and maturity, not the soils, is what is producing the number of big bucks.


i obviously made that comment due to the comment you had made, but some people might see a comment like that and believe that that is the reason they don't have (see) big bucks. it needs to be realized that age is much more important than any thing else. i won't descredit the soil for what it does, but the greatest soil in the world ain't going to produce anything if the deer don't get old enough to produce it.

and personally, as far as a short gun season, i think that is a terrible management practice to promote older bucks (u must agree?). i would much rather see a month-long season than a 2-day season. people are not picky when they know that buck might be the only one they'll get a shot at.

Indiana has comparable soils and genetics as Iowa. There is only one plausible reason that Iowa blows Indiana out of the water. And it's because they're general gun season occurs after peak breeding, insuring that many bucks reach maturity. Many young kids understand this, but others just can't grasp it.

It's just like foodplots. All the "experts" think that food plots are the reason for the upswing in mature buck production throughout the country. Well, foodplots do indeed help. But, you can't cause a buck to mature until he's mature by providing him excellent nutrition. Can you get an 8 year old kid to reach his true growth by feeding him fantastic nutrition? No! Just like you can't creat a mature buck until he's reached his 4th birthday.

Shortened, and or post rut gun seasons producve more mature bucks. See: Iowa, Illinois, and Ohio.

Also, you can't discount that fact that Iowa (and others) are actually happy about producing giant bucks for folks to shoot. When a states respective DNR is in favor of, and supportive of, producing mature bucks for hunters to harvest it sure helps.



How do you explain Minnesota and Kentucky?

Both allow long gun seasons during the rut and put up great numbers of mature bucks every year.

I think it has more to do with deer density numbers, nutrition, hunters being more selective and a more balanced herd than it does short gun seasons.

Short gun seasons will spare some bucks, but both Iowa and Illinois allow two bucks per hunter to be killed and Iowa allows party hunting during the gun season.

Indiana went the obr route to try and save bucks and make killing more does attractive to hoosier hunters. Beforehand, you could kill you two bucks and not be bothered with the does.

What I think has occured over the last 6 seasons (and the harvest data seems to agree)is that hoosier hunters are finally killing enough does (@ least equal to the number of bucks killed) and that is helping to reduce herd numbers and lower herd densities. And lower herd densities and a more balanced herd will result in more mature animals for us to hunt.


thats a hell of a deer,u should enter it into the iowa big buck contest

The comments to this entry are closed.

Welcome to Big Deer

  • About This Blog

    The blogosphere has changed the way we talk about world events, politics, entertainment…and now hunting. Come join the discussion...think, learn and tell us what's on your mind. This blog is also the place to see and read about some of the biggest whitetail bucks shot in North America. Send me your story and photo!

Big Deer Blog™

  • a Big Deer, Inc. website
    (c) Big Deer, Inc. All Rights Reserved


My Photo


  • “Some men are obsessed with good guns, fine wine and beautiful women. I am consumed with one day shooting a drop-tine buck.”—Hanback, January 1, 2008, the day this blog was launched

Get Updates Delivered!