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Ca_Vermonster's picture
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Deer weight: Dressed vs Live

ECU and I are having a discussion on another thread, and I wanted to find out what the rest of the guys think.  When reporting a deer's weight, do you go by live weight, or dressed weight? 

I know that most of New England, at least Maine, Vermont, and New Hampshire, it's all about dressed weight.  Nothing left in the body cavity.  All of the record books report dressed weight too.  However, ECU and others from the south say it's all about live weight. 

It makes no difference to me, but I am curious, where are you from, and how do they report weight in your area?  It appears to be a regional thing.

CVC
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I don't report weight at all

I don't report weight at all and no one I know every asks how much did it weigh?  I guess it is a regional thing becaue I never hear anyone around here talking about weight, number of points on the antlers, yes, the score, yes, but weight no.

What records include the dressed weight of the deer?  I have not seen it in the limited times I've looked at boone and crockett stuff so I may have missed it.

Ca_Vermonster's picture
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Record books that include

Record books that include weight.  Mostly "Big Buck Clubs" and such.  I think it's from a time when deer were hunted for what I believe they should always be, meat.  The bigger the body of the deer, the more meat.  That is what was important.  I, and many, many others, would take a 200 lb 8 point anyday over a 160 pound 10 point. 

Check out the individual states, like the 3 I mentioned.  Google their record books.  Should be easy to find.

CVC
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Gotcha, one of the later

Gotcha, one of the later posts provided an insight and information on the big buck contests.  I think I'd take the ten point buck even at 160 pounds.  I can afford to lose a few pounds anyway

Ca_Vermonster's picture
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Yeah, but venison is around

Yeah, but venison is around 97% lean, the best meat for you.  Don't worry about the weight gain.

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live vs dressed weights

I've hunted a good bit in the Northeast, mainly in Connecticut and Maine. I know that in Maine pretty much all the big buck contests are won by highest certified field dressed weight. There are some really large bodied deer there with many going over the 200 lb mark, which will get you into the "Big Bucks Club" there, by turning in an official weight stub. My biggest buck weight-wise was from Maine and went 225 dressed, on official scales. I now live in Tennessee and all contests I see around here rely on rack size, not deer weight. A good sized Tn buck (8 pnt) may only dress at 125 or so. A Big Tn buck weighs 150 and it's a very odd occurance to see any buck go over 175, dressed. I'd suppose it's the smaller size of the deer that drives remarks about live weight, perhaps. But it does get somewhat confusing when weight is mentioned and not explained as either dressed or live weight. A deer loses over 20% of it's body weight when fully field dressed. I've seen some charts that claim an even higher amount. Simply a regional thing, I guess, like counting points; Eastern vs Western count. I prefer a known dressed weight, personally.

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It's all about dressed weight

It's all about dressed weight here in Michigan.  I guess that would change if I shot an absolute hoss that I thought my break 300lbs on the hoof or something.  Along those same lines, there was an interesting read in one of the recent D&DH's that mentioned the "200" club that was all about the weight of the deer.  It was somewhere in the northeast, I believe Maine.  I can't remember, but I think to qualify they were all 200lbs field dressed.  One guy had taken 26 that dressed over 200lbs!  That's nuts!

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Maine

The "Big Bucks Club" is Maine and by sending in a certified weight stub, you will get a patch denoting membership (likely a small charge, but I've forgotten that). I thought I'd whacked a big Maine deer (dressed at 225) until I saw one that went 250 dressed. That's a big deer. Maine's state record is still the Hinkley deer, I believe and if I remember correctly old Horace Hinkley shot a huge deer that went 355 dressed on a certified scale in 1955 or thereabouts. Seems I read an article years ago that said a previous weight, on a scale later found to be accurate (not certified, however) had that same deer going 400 or so a day or so earlier. Either way that's a lotta venison!!Yes :yes:

Ca_Vermonster's picture
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My uncle has shot a 252 lber

My uncle has shot a 252 lber before in Maine.  That thing was a beast.  I believe he also has one other 200+ pounder.  That is the magical number in Maine, as well as Vermont and New Hampshire.  The 200 poind club.... Someday.... Wink

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