November 16, 2009
More Details on the Sad Story of the Biggest Eight-Point Buck Ever Killed
By Scott Bestul
Last week, a giant whitetail was allegedly poached near the town of Cannon Falls, Minnesota. The buck’s antlers sported a highly symmetrical frame and is said to have green-scored 192 B&C, and netted 188”. The inside spread of 28-3/8” is mule-deer wide.
Lou Cornicelli, the Minnesota DNR big-game coordinator, had this comment about the monster buck ... “Millions of deer are harvested nationally each year. The probability of harvesting one this big is just infinitesimal. It doesn’t exist.”
Cornicelli said more than a mouthful. Mainly because the measurements being tossed about belong to a whitetail with a rack sporting only eight points. Ask any veteran B&C scorer, and he’ll tell you to kill a “Booner” (a buck that qualifies for the B&C all-time awards minimum of 170” ), the buck better have at least ten tines, long main beams, and plenty of mass. Only a handful of 8-point whitetails have the right stuff to crack the B&C book.
Out of curiosity, I searched the B&C records program to see just how small that handful was. The answer? Even tinier than I thought. The B&C book includes animals killed as far back as 1830 and includes whitetails tagged up through 2008. In that 170-year-plus span, only 34 8-point whitetails have scored 170” or better. That’s thirty four out of literally millions of 8-pointers killed in that span.
And to make this even tougher to swallow, this Minnesota 8-point would not have only made this list with room to spare, it would have been the best 8-point whitetail ever. A world record deer. Second place? 180-3/8”, the score awarded to a South Dakota buck killed by Vernon Winter in 1965.
This magnificent buck could still find its way into the B&C books, since the organization allows “found” or “picked up” heads to be entered. Since the Minnesota DNR is now in possession of the rack, they could pursue putting the buck into B&C and, if allowed, the buck would at least be honored. But here’s a safer bet; the rack will almost certainly be included in the DNR’s “Wall of Shame”, a traveling display of poached trophy heads that state conservation officers take to sports shows each year.
In my opinion, not a fitting end to what is likely the largest 8-point buck in history.