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Largest Whitetail Buck Ever...Freak or Fantastic?

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April 29, 2011

Largest Whitetail Buck Ever...Freak or Fantastic?

By Scott Bestul

by Scott Bestul

The video clip below shows Free Agent, a buck owned by Battle Ridge Whitetails, a captive facility in Pennsylvania. The video claims that Free Agent is the largest whitetail buck ever, a fact that I haven’t documented. All I know is, he’s unbelievably big.

How does a buck grow antlers like this? Interesting question, and one I’ve addressed in my whitetail column in the July issue of the magazine. To research that story, I visited Wilderness Whitetails, the home of a famous buck named “Sudden Impact”, then the largest whitetail I knew about and a buck that would have eclipsed the 500” mark of antler growth. I was not hunting at Wilderness Whitetails, but quizzing owner Greg Flees about how “breeder” bucks like this reach such stupendous size, and what the possible implications of such growth are for hunters and managers of free-ranging deer.

I won’t reveal the details of that conversation, partly because I don’t have space here, and partly because I want you to read the magazine.

The question for today is this: What do you think when you see a buck with antlers like this? Granted, it’s hard to keep any perspective with a whitetail like Free Agent, a buck with more inches of antler on his head than any hunter of free-ranging deer is ever going to see. But watch the clip and give me your gut reaction; is Free Agent a freak…Or is he fantastic?

Comments (57)

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from Hil wrote 2 years 51 weeks ago

Freak. I'm not sure how he holds his head up!

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from VAHunter540 wrote 2 years 51 weeks ago

I feel like he is more a freak, than just fantastic. Bucks like the Whole in the Horn, the Missouri Monarch, Beatty Buck, etc are fantastic simply because they grew up wild and naturally. There is a certain mystique that captures a hunter’s mind that only goes along with a “wild” whitetail. Free Agent is awesome to look at and maybe gives a little excitement to the whitetail world because we see that maybe a 350”-400” inch buck isn’t completely out of the question in the wild. It might just be a matter of perfect timing but it could conceivably happen. Now you start talking about 500”+ and I think most hunters can appreciate that it’s just a glimpse into an imaginary world. One that’s fool of ideal breeding, steroids, and a diet of the perfect foods. He is a science project and even though the volcano made of baking soda and vinegar is cool even today…. it’s still not a real volcano. Now they make science fair volcanoes out of Mentos and Diet Coke, bigger and better but still just a knock off compared to the real thing. Plus look at the other factors, the deer can barely hold his head up straight and it seems he can barely run because of all that weight on his head. In the wild a deer like that most likely would never survive. Dogs, Coyotes, cars, people, and just sheer exhaustion from having to grow that massive set of antlers would likely kill him or it would never reach that potential and would only get as big as the environment around it would allow.

He’s still awesome to look at though, wonder how much those sheds would get at an auction.

+5 Good Comment? | | Report
from Beekeeper wrote 2 years 51 weeks ago

You can tell that the weight of the antlers is putting a strain on him. Notice how he is canting his head to the side and head carriage is lower. He is a freak of overabundant nutrition. I would imagine the bucks in the pen have also been wormed to help maximize nutrient uptake. Ray Scott always said in his clover commercials, "Feed 'um and they will grow." Mr. Scott may have been correct.

+6 Good Comment? | | Report
from fliphuntr14 wrote 2 years 51 weeks ago

freak looks like he has some neck and back problems from carrying that thing around. it is still awesome to see the growth potential of antlers. I think its more of a science experiment not a trophy of superiority and should be treated as such.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from Cgull wrote 2 years 51 weeks ago

it's a freak, High fenced in steriod induced calcium deposits.

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from COLORADOKID wrote 2 years 51 weeks ago

This is disgusting and should be put down i would never in my life want to see an animal like that in the wild i would have to put it out of it's misery, it looks as if he is in pain from holding the antlers up.

+4 Good Comment? | | Report
from Hil wrote 2 years 51 weeks ago

Not to mention the irony of naming a caged deer "Free Agent."

+4 Good Comment? | | Report
from Bob81 wrote 2 years 51 weeks ago

VAHunter,
Well said. This deer is grotesque. I find very little admirable about any of it.

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from jjas wrote 2 years 51 weeks ago

This fascination with hornography is what is wrong today with hunting.

You have guys paying huge sums to "hunt" the cast offs that don't reach their "potential" in places similar to this and the deer in the pic was forced to become a genetic freak so the owners can sell his sperm.

Ridiculous.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from gman3186 wrote 2 years 51 weeks ago

fantastic freak just imagine if this was a free ranging deer just think of sitting in the woods and not seeing nothing and all of sudden that hugh rack peaks over a hill and comes right towards you man that would be a sight to see but unfornately this deer has been turned into livestock and you tell the rack is a burden to him i bet that would make for one tough neck roast

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from jakenbake wrote 2 years 51 weeks ago

Not to sound like a tree hugger, but I almost feel sorry for that deer. You can pretty much tell just by looking at him he has waaaay too much weight on his head for his body to naturally support. This, like just about any high-fence operation, is both sad and pathetic.

+10 Good Comment? | | Report
from NHshtr wrote 2 years 51 weeks ago

It's something to see. But since its human fed, and scientifically managed it can only be classed as a freak.

Couldn't this (extreme growth of certain features) be accomplished with a number of species?

I don't see why a hunter watching this video would get excited? It's more like observing the result if a scientific experiment.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from neuman23 wrote 2 years 51 weeks ago

Jake you're no tree hugger, you're human. I feel sorry for the deer too.

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from CHKILCHII wrote 2 years 50 weeks ago

gman-Not trying to put down that vision but a deer like this simply would not survive in the wild. Predators would easily pick off a deer so pathetically manipulated. I would take a big bodied basket rack over that FREAK anyday. I mean, who wants to put that meat into THEIR system.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Hobob wrote 2 years 50 weeks ago

Its a freak and a domesticated deer is about as kin to a wild one as a dairy cow to an elk in my opinion. No challenge = not a trophy the points don't matter.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from buckhunter wrote 2 years 50 weeks ago

The deer is a joke and a mockery to whitetail.

+5 Good Comment? | | Report
from Bellringer wrote 2 years 50 weeks ago

Free Agent is a fantastic freak. He is obviously the product of manipulation of some sort. I think that who ever is behind this experiment should be ashamed of themselves for mistreating this animal.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from Walt Smith wrote 2 years 50 weeks ago

Freak! Sad thing is there are too many human freaks that support the businesses that are creating them. Killing one of these animals behind a fence is one of the most cowardly shameful acts a human can commit. The whole practice needs to be banned.

+5 Good Comment? | | Report
from Judd McCullum wrote 2 years 50 weeks ago

Eutrophication. Too much nutrient will choke a body of water, and you be damn sure it will kill a buck like this. One false step and he's breaking his neck or a leg. It's a freak, and this is prolonged and unnecessary cruelty.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from nwild wrote 2 years 50 weeks ago

If I had a cervadid playpen and enough steroids- I suppose I could grow a deer with 3 dicks and a rack to match. But what does that have to do with being an outdoorsman?

+7 Good Comment? | | Report
from themadflyfisher wrote 2 years 50 weeks ago

Definitely a freak, and a shame...
I want to see what the weight of those antlers + time do to that deer. Either it's body is going to grow into them(givin the amount of steroids it receives, probably not too far fetched) or it's going to end up with it's neck and back all twisted and living life on the ground spoon fed so the a..hole who jerks it off can continue to profit

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from Hoski wrote 2 years 50 weeks ago

Freak!

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from rustyt wrote 2 years 50 weeks ago

I feel sorry for him.

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from Mark Orlicky wrote 2 years 50 weeks ago

This is a freak. Perhaps the genes would have supported some of that growth, but its pretty obvious that the owners know something about how to produce freakish horns -- the injections of growth hormone, the steroids, the nutritional needs.
Calling the deer "Free Agent" is the height of hypocrisy. Free??? How ludicrous. Given the way the animal is carrying its head, its struggling with the weight. I think this is a horrible abomination.

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from student-archer wrote 2 years 50 weeks ago

kind of like plastic tatas, nice to look at, but would rather have the real thing!

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from Karen Hieb wrote 2 years 50 weeks ago

I am no tree hugger either, but I sat freak. The poor guy had to work so much harder than normal just to eat, and you can imagine how much extra nutrients it takes to grow those not to mention the energy to hold them up. Though I hunt and kill animals, I have a healthy respect for my prey, this just seams cruel.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from nchase1924 wrote 2 years 50 weeks ago

I feel like this deer needs to be seen by a veterinary oncologist for a round of chemo treatment. Those antler mutations literally look cancerous! It's really a travesty that someone is making money of this poor fella. I'm very much a traditionalist when it comes to my view of the outdoors but I have my consessions too. Even though I prefer "fair chase" rules like most sportsman, I've learned that there are advantages for high fence areas. This is mainly for those who are disabled and would not be able to have that opportunity in the field. This deer is strictly a sideshow act. But I can't take all the credit away from him. He's the Barry Bonds of deer (still a bad thing). Pumped full of 'roids but taking a needle in the tucus doesn't make you have the talent and technique to hit the ball solidly and consistently. If this deer was to be released into the wild after a lot of rehabilitation it might pass on some great genetics but we all know that will most likely never happen. We all should take notice of what a great deer is NEVER supposed to look like.

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from Drew McClure wrote 2 years 50 weeks ago

Here's a quote from Keith Warren "A high fence makes for good neighbors." Get out your check book boys it's time to go trophy hunting. Keith sat on his stand just out of range until he got impatient and walked up to a wooded ridge line with a concentration of monster high fence bucks and he got his buck before his plane left town. Keith was elated by the antler size of his trophy.

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from Hank111 wrote 2 years 50 weeks ago

Lucky for him, they cut the rack off when its done growing,so he can recuperate untill next years bigger set. That same buck grossed over 300 inches at 1 1/2 years old, and I believe he is only 2 or 3 years old in that clip from last year.The biggest health risk to these bucks is damageing the velvet and getting an infection which is what killed the Sudden Impact buck while he was still growing and 5 inches shy of 500 inches.

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from country road wrote 2 years 50 weeks ago

There ain't no such animal.

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from FirstBubba wrote 2 years 50 weeks ago

It's kinda like finding a diamond that finish cuts at 50 pounds. Fantastic stone. Whatcha gonna do with it?
Nobody can afford it.

Knew a fellow when I was a kid who raised a buck fawn. The deer was fed daily along with whatever browse he could get from his five acre enclosure. It was finally driven home to me the impact that nutrition has on antler developement. Instead of the first year "spike" rack that I expected, I was surprised to find him sporting an absolutely fantastic, 22", perfect 8 point rack!
It's abnormal and unnatural. Until a market no longer exists, this sort of thing will continue!
What's next?
Why hasn't somebody developed a 50 pound Rio Grande turkey with a 2 foot beard and 6 inch spurs?

Bubba

P.S. - It would be extremely difficult for that animal to survive in the wild and I'm quite certain, without the enhanced nutrition, that rack would shrink considerably.

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from steve182 wrote 2 years 50 weeks ago

I'm not impressed

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from 60256 wrote 2 years 50 weeks ago

Disgusting. Truly revolting.

Nate

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from smallgamehunter25 wrote 2 years 50 weeks ago

Just another result of controlling the breeding and genetics most likely. I have never cared and will never care about the size of antlers on an animal and never will become one of the "trophy hunters." I hunt for the enjoyment of the outdoors and the payoff of your efforts, not a head on the wall*.

*Not saying I wouldn't get a mount done, they're pretty nice looking, and hope to take up amateur taxidermy one day but I'm not completly focused on that.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Quinton Schmelz... wrote 2 years 50 weeks ago

I must say that is I was given a choice between that deer and eight point I shot in Jan. I would still choose my deer. That deer is just disgusting and grotesque. I sure wouldn't want his mount on my wall, even if he was wild. I count a good deer more on beauty, of body and antlers, rather than points

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Bernie wrote 2 years 50 weeks ago

This whole business of behind-the-fences unnatural breeding is a disgusting offshoot of what once was called hunting. Even more revolting are the people who patronize these "hunting preserves" and keep them in business. What on earth has happened to white-tailed deer hunting?

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from shane wrote 2 years 50 weeks ago

Hell in a Handbasket.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from JSKELTON522 wrote 2 years 50 weeks ago

I think farming wildlife is disgrace to the animal. It is not natural to grow such a rack on a game animal. The commercialization of hunting and over emphasis on massive racks is poising the true spirit of hunting. Fair chase all natural is the only way it should be.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Muleynut30.06 wrote 2 years 50 weeks ago

Frankly this is disgusting the deer looks unhealthy in all of those shots someone who has the ability to shoot long range should get from the opposite ridge and put him out of his misery. With that being said its a business and its all about money about the health of the deer the ower should be called into question here.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Tim Platt wrote 2 years 50 weeks ago

Looks like animal cruelty to me. The buck keeps leaning his head to the right because of the huge deformation at the bottom of the rack. It is not even pretty to look at. This is what hunting has become?

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from ckRich wrote 2 years 50 weeks ago

Freak. That's not even right.

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from bassman1 wrote 2 years 50 weeks ago

Do me a favor and cut some weight off that rack.It looks painful.

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from Ga hunter wrote 2 years 50 weeks ago

Freak I feel bad for em hes leaning to his right a good bit and i bet that things gotta be hurting him.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Ga hunter wrote 2 years 50 weeks ago

Freak I feel bad for em hes leaning to his right a good bit and i bet that things gotta be hurting him.

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from pittrehab wrote 2 years 50 weeks ago

That is not the type of buck I would like to see while bowhunting. I think it's a freak and not what I would want reproduced on a large scale.

Accessible Hunter

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from midwest_money_shot wrote 2 years 50 weeks ago

This deer is definitely a freak because it can barely hold its head up. It wouldn't make it past July with a rack like that in northern Wisconsin because the wolves would just run it down

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from IowaGuy wrote 2 years 50 weeks ago

This is nothing more than an experiment. Carefully selected genetics over many generations of fenced in deer, feed a perfect diet in a stress free fenced in barnyard, daily steroid injections.

This deer simply could not survive in the wild.

Beat some CEO from Chicago will pay $75,000 to "hunt" this thing when it comes out of the barn-door for its daily 7am feeding.

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from IowaGuy wrote 2 years 50 weeks ago

For once I think I would agree with PETA and Humane Society if they said this was animal cruelty.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Silverback wrote 2 years 50 weeks ago

Wow amazing. I think most of you are crazy to think the buck is in pain, or should be put down. You must not spend much time around deer in the woods. He can bulk up his neck and carry the antlers when ever he wants to. If you have seen a rutting bucks neck compared to what they look like now, you know what I am talking about. Plus, he not nearly stuggling. I've seen deer with an entire leg missing that I wouldn't put down because they are survivors. By the way, he is a MONEY MAKER for this business and if they thought he was stressed, they would cut the antlers off. His sperm is where the money is, not his rack.

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from COLORADOKID wrote 2 years 50 weeks ago

Some people need to get back to the basics of hunting and stop the nonesense with the genetics and crap.It could mess up everything that hunters stand for not to mention the ammo it gives to the peta freaks.

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from jbird wrote 2 years 50 weeks ago

Buck's necks swell up during the RUT, that doesn't really help the other 8 months of the growing cycle. I don't think this buck looks healthy. I don't think he should be "put down", but cut his rack off for God's sake, it is clearly an unnatural burden on the animal. As long as there is a market full of moneyed wanna-be "hunters" (and I use the term hunter very very loosely), this kind of non-sense will continue.

Before someone trots out the standard "We hunters need to all stick together", let be call BS. High fence "hunting" does NOTHING positive for our sport. All the claims about helping "disabled" people be able to hunt is BS too. You can spend the same money on a good guide and shoot a "wild" animal.

If "hunting" live-stock is your true passion, you can spend LESS money and "hunt" cattle.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from Silverback wrote 2 years 50 weeks ago

jbird, My point is that the bucks neck muscles could handle the situation, as it does durning the rut. And that buck is way more healthy than any wild buck. I is feed the best stuff avalible and I dosen't have to even find it, plus he gets it all winter long. I fact the reason for such and amazing rack is BECAUSE it is exteremly heatlhy.

-1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Hank111 wrote 2 years 50 weeks ago

I have to agree with silverback. That buck has nothing to complain about, except never being able to actually breed a doe. Most guys never get to see what a mature bucks body looks like in the summer and he is a very young deer. The rack was probably cut off within a few weeks of the video.Iowaguy, $75,000 would not even come close to buying this deer.Bucks like this dont get shot.
I would never want to hunt deer in a fenced area but I can appreciate a domestic buck that has been bred to double what people used to think was the max for a whitetail. In the wild these genetics and conditions would never come together, but relax everybody, its not going to be the end of deer hunting as you know it.

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from Ryan Langemeier wrote 2 years 49 weeks ago

That is disgusting it doesnt even look like antlers just some deformed mass on its head that is making it so it cant even keep its head up straight and probably putting it through a lot of pain

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from pudgexl29 wrote 2 years 48 weeks ago

that is a freak of nature. you would think that a buck that big would be a larger bodied deer. it didn't look real big in the video

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from stickngar21 wrote 2 years 20 weeks ago

The thing looks miserable with all that weight he's gotta hold up. And looks ugly as crap. I'd shoot him to get him out of the herd

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from Berserker wrote 2 years 19 weeks ago

The deer doesn't look very healthy. Poor coat and not that big of a body. Nothing to see here.

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Post a Comment

from jakenbake wrote 2 years 51 weeks ago

Not to sound like a tree hugger, but I almost feel sorry for that deer. You can pretty much tell just by looking at him he has waaaay too much weight on his head for his body to naturally support. This, like just about any high-fence operation, is both sad and pathetic.

+10 Good Comment? | | Report
from nwild wrote 2 years 50 weeks ago

If I had a cervadid playpen and enough steroids- I suppose I could grow a deer with 3 dicks and a rack to match. But what does that have to do with being an outdoorsman?

+7 Good Comment? | | Report
from Beekeeper wrote 2 years 51 weeks ago

You can tell that the weight of the antlers is putting a strain on him. Notice how he is canting his head to the side and head carriage is lower. He is a freak of overabundant nutrition. I would imagine the bucks in the pen have also been wormed to help maximize nutrient uptake. Ray Scott always said in his clover commercials, "Feed 'um and they will grow." Mr. Scott may have been correct.

+6 Good Comment? | | Report
from Walt Smith wrote 2 years 50 weeks ago

Freak! Sad thing is there are too many human freaks that support the businesses that are creating them. Killing one of these animals behind a fence is one of the most cowardly shameful acts a human can commit. The whole practice needs to be banned.

+5 Good Comment? | | Report
from buckhunter wrote 2 years 50 weeks ago

The deer is a joke and a mockery to whitetail.

+5 Good Comment? | | Report
from VAHunter540 wrote 2 years 51 weeks ago

I feel like he is more a freak, than just fantastic. Bucks like the Whole in the Horn, the Missouri Monarch, Beatty Buck, etc are fantastic simply because they grew up wild and naturally. There is a certain mystique that captures a hunter’s mind that only goes along with a “wild” whitetail. Free Agent is awesome to look at and maybe gives a little excitement to the whitetail world because we see that maybe a 350”-400” inch buck isn’t completely out of the question in the wild. It might just be a matter of perfect timing but it could conceivably happen. Now you start talking about 500”+ and I think most hunters can appreciate that it’s just a glimpse into an imaginary world. One that’s fool of ideal breeding, steroids, and a diet of the perfect foods. He is a science project and even though the volcano made of baking soda and vinegar is cool even today…. it’s still not a real volcano. Now they make science fair volcanoes out of Mentos and Diet Coke, bigger and better but still just a knock off compared to the real thing. Plus look at the other factors, the deer can barely hold his head up straight and it seems he can barely run because of all that weight on his head. In the wild a deer like that most likely would never survive. Dogs, Coyotes, cars, people, and just sheer exhaustion from having to grow that massive set of antlers would likely kill him or it would never reach that potential and would only get as big as the environment around it would allow.

He’s still awesome to look at though, wonder how much those sheds would get at an auction.

+5 Good Comment? | | Report
from themadflyfisher wrote 2 years 50 weeks ago

Definitely a freak, and a shame...
I want to see what the weight of those antlers + time do to that deer. Either it's body is going to grow into them(givin the amount of steroids it receives, probably not too far fetched) or it's going to end up with it's neck and back all twisted and living life on the ground spoon fed so the a..hole who jerks it off can continue to profit

+5 Good Comment? | | Report
from COLORADOKID wrote 2 years 51 weeks ago

This is disgusting and should be put down i would never in my life want to see an animal like that in the wild i would have to put it out of it's misery, it looks as if he is in pain from holding the antlers up.

+4 Good Comment? | | Report
from Hil wrote 2 years 51 weeks ago

Not to mention the irony of naming a caged deer "Free Agent."

+4 Good Comment? | | Report
from Bernie wrote 2 years 50 weeks ago

This whole business of behind-the-fences unnatural breeding is a disgusting offshoot of what once was called hunting. Even more revolting are the people who patronize these "hunting preserves" and keep them in business. What on earth has happened to white-tailed deer hunting?

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from 60256 wrote 2 years 50 weeks ago

Disgusting. Truly revolting.

Nate

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from Bob81 wrote 2 years 51 weeks ago

VAHunter,
Well said. This deer is grotesque. I find very little admirable about any of it.

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from neuman23 wrote 2 years 51 weeks ago

Jake you're no tree hugger, you're human. I feel sorry for the deer too.

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from Cgull wrote 2 years 51 weeks ago

it's a freak, High fenced in steriod induced calcium deposits.

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from student-archer wrote 2 years 50 weeks ago

kind of like plastic tatas, nice to look at, but would rather have the real thing!

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from jjas wrote 2 years 51 weeks ago

This fascination with hornography is what is wrong today with hunting.

You have guys paying huge sums to "hunt" the cast offs that don't reach their "potential" in places similar to this and the deer in the pic was forced to become a genetic freak so the owners can sell his sperm.

Ridiculous.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from steve182 wrote 2 years 50 weeks ago

I'm not impressed

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from jbird wrote 2 years 50 weeks ago

Buck's necks swell up during the RUT, that doesn't really help the other 8 months of the growing cycle. I don't think this buck looks healthy. I don't think he should be "put down", but cut his rack off for God's sake, it is clearly an unnatural burden on the animal. As long as there is a market full of moneyed wanna-be "hunters" (and I use the term hunter very very loosely), this kind of non-sense will continue.

Before someone trots out the standard "We hunters need to all stick together", let be call BS. High fence "hunting" does NOTHING positive for our sport. All the claims about helping "disabled" people be able to hunt is BS too. You can spend the same money on a good guide and shoot a "wild" animal.

If "hunting" live-stock is your true passion, you can spend LESS money and "hunt" cattle.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from Judd McCullum wrote 2 years 50 weeks ago

Eutrophication. Too much nutrient will choke a body of water, and you be damn sure it will kill a buck like this. One false step and he's breaking his neck or a leg. It's a freak, and this is prolonged and unnecessary cruelty.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from fliphuntr14 wrote 2 years 51 weeks ago

freak looks like he has some neck and back problems from carrying that thing around. it is still awesome to see the growth potential of antlers. I think its more of a science experiment not a trophy of superiority and should be treated as such.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from Bellringer wrote 2 years 50 weeks ago

Free Agent is a fantastic freak. He is obviously the product of manipulation of some sort. I think that who ever is behind this experiment should be ashamed of themselves for mistreating this animal.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from NHshtr wrote 2 years 51 weeks ago

It's something to see. But since its human fed, and scientifically managed it can only be classed as a freak.

Couldn't this (extreme growth of certain features) be accomplished with a number of species?

I don't see why a hunter watching this video would get excited? It's more like observing the result if a scientific experiment.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from Karen Hieb wrote 2 years 50 weeks ago

I am no tree hugger either, but I sat freak. The poor guy had to work so much harder than normal just to eat, and you can imagine how much extra nutrients it takes to grow those not to mention the energy to hold them up. Though I hunt and kill animals, I have a healthy respect for my prey, this just seams cruel.

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from shane wrote 2 years 50 weeks ago

Hell in a Handbasket.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Hobob wrote 2 years 50 weeks ago

Its a freak and a domesticated deer is about as kin to a wild one as a dairy cow to an elk in my opinion. No challenge = not a trophy the points don't matter.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from IowaGuy wrote 2 years 50 weeks ago

For once I think I would agree with PETA and Humane Society if they said this was animal cruelty.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Muleynut30.06 wrote 2 years 50 weeks ago

Frankly this is disgusting the deer looks unhealthy in all of those shots someone who has the ability to shoot long range should get from the opposite ridge and put him out of his misery. With that being said its a business and its all about money about the health of the deer the ower should be called into question here.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from smallgamehunter25 wrote 2 years 50 weeks ago

Just another result of controlling the breeding and genetics most likely. I have never cared and will never care about the size of antlers on an animal and never will become one of the "trophy hunters." I hunt for the enjoyment of the outdoors and the payoff of your efforts, not a head on the wall*.

*Not saying I wouldn't get a mount done, they're pretty nice looking, and hope to take up amateur taxidermy one day but I'm not completly focused on that.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from JSKELTON522 wrote 2 years 50 weeks ago

I think farming wildlife is disgrace to the animal. It is not natural to grow such a rack on a game animal. The commercialization of hunting and over emphasis on massive racks is poising the true spirit of hunting. Fair chase all natural is the only way it should be.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from CHKILCHII wrote 2 years 50 weeks ago

gman-Not trying to put down that vision but a deer like this simply would not survive in the wild. Predators would easily pick off a deer so pathetically manipulated. I would take a big bodied basket rack over that FREAK anyday. I mean, who wants to put that meat into THEIR system.

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from Quinton Schmelz... wrote 2 years 50 weeks ago

I must say that is I was given a choice between that deer and eight point I shot in Jan. I would still choose my deer. That deer is just disgusting and grotesque. I sure wouldn't want his mount on my wall, even if he was wild. I count a good deer more on beauty, of body and antlers, rather than points

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from midwest_money_shot wrote 2 years 50 weeks ago

This deer is definitely a freak because it can barely hold its head up. It wouldn't make it past July with a rack like that in northern Wisconsin because the wolves would just run it down

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from Ga hunter wrote 2 years 50 weeks ago

Freak I feel bad for em hes leaning to his right a good bit and i bet that things gotta be hurting him.

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from Tim Platt wrote 2 years 50 weeks ago

Looks like animal cruelty to me. The buck keeps leaning his head to the right because of the huge deformation at the bottom of the rack. It is not even pretty to look at. This is what hunting has become?

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from Hank111 wrote 2 years 50 weeks ago

Lucky for him, they cut the rack off when its done growing,so he can recuperate untill next years bigger set. That same buck grossed over 300 inches at 1 1/2 years old, and I believe he is only 2 or 3 years old in that clip from last year.The biggest health risk to these bucks is damageing the velvet and getting an infection which is what killed the Sudden Impact buck while he was still growing and 5 inches shy of 500 inches.

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from Hank111 wrote 2 years 50 weeks ago

I have to agree with silverback. That buck has nothing to complain about, except never being able to actually breed a doe. Most guys never get to see what a mature bucks body looks like in the summer and he is a very young deer. The rack was probably cut off within a few weeks of the video.Iowaguy, $75,000 would not even come close to buying this deer.Bucks like this dont get shot.
I would never want to hunt deer in a fenced area but I can appreciate a domestic buck that has been bred to double what people used to think was the max for a whitetail. In the wild these genetics and conditions would never come together, but relax everybody, its not going to be the end of deer hunting as you know it.

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from gman3186 wrote 2 years 51 weeks ago

fantastic freak just imagine if this was a free ranging deer just think of sitting in the woods and not seeing nothing and all of sudden that hugh rack peaks over a hill and comes right towards you man that would be a sight to see but unfornately this deer has been turned into livestock and you tell the rack is a burden to him i bet that would make for one tough neck roast

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from FirstBubba wrote 2 years 50 weeks ago

It's kinda like finding a diamond that finish cuts at 50 pounds. Fantastic stone. Whatcha gonna do with it?
Nobody can afford it.

Knew a fellow when I was a kid who raised a buck fawn. The deer was fed daily along with whatever browse he could get from his five acre enclosure. It was finally driven home to me the impact that nutrition has on antler developement. Instead of the first year "spike" rack that I expected, I was surprised to find him sporting an absolutely fantastic, 22", perfect 8 point rack!
It's abnormal and unnatural. Until a market no longer exists, this sort of thing will continue!
What's next?
Why hasn't somebody developed a 50 pound Rio Grande turkey with a 2 foot beard and 6 inch spurs?

Bubba

P.S. - It would be extremely difficult for that animal to survive in the wild and I'm quite certain, without the enhanced nutrition, that rack would shrink considerably.

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from Mark Orlicky wrote 2 years 50 weeks ago

This is a freak. Perhaps the genes would have supported some of that growth, but its pretty obvious that the owners know something about how to produce freakish horns -- the injections of growth hormone, the steroids, the nutritional needs.
Calling the deer "Free Agent" is the height of hypocrisy. Free??? How ludicrous. Given the way the animal is carrying its head, its struggling with the weight. I think this is a horrible abomination.

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from country road wrote 2 years 50 weeks ago

There ain't no such animal.

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from Drew McClure wrote 2 years 50 weeks ago

Here's a quote from Keith Warren "A high fence makes for good neighbors." Get out your check book boys it's time to go trophy hunting. Keith sat on his stand just out of range until he got impatient and walked up to a wooded ridge line with a concentration of monster high fence bucks and he got his buck before his plane left town. Keith was elated by the antler size of his trophy.

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from ckRich wrote 2 years 50 weeks ago

Freak. That's not even right.

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from Hoski wrote 2 years 50 weeks ago

Freak!

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from COLORADOKID wrote 2 years 50 weeks ago

Some people need to get back to the basics of hunting and stop the nonesense with the genetics and crap.It could mess up everything that hunters stand for not to mention the ammo it gives to the peta freaks.

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from IowaGuy wrote 2 years 50 weeks ago

This is nothing more than an experiment. Carefully selected genetics over many generations of fenced in deer, feed a perfect diet in a stress free fenced in barnyard, daily steroid injections.

This deer simply could not survive in the wild.

Beat some CEO from Chicago will pay $75,000 to "hunt" this thing when it comes out of the barn-door for its daily 7am feeding.

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from Hil wrote 2 years 51 weeks ago

Freak. I'm not sure how he holds his head up!

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from rustyt wrote 2 years 50 weeks ago

I feel sorry for him.

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from bassman1 wrote 2 years 50 weeks ago

Do me a favor and cut some weight off that rack.It looks painful.

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from Ryan Langemeier wrote 2 years 49 weeks ago

That is disgusting it doesnt even look like antlers just some deformed mass on its head that is making it so it cant even keep its head up straight and probably putting it through a lot of pain

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from Ga hunter wrote 2 years 50 weeks ago

Freak I feel bad for em hes leaning to his right a good bit and i bet that things gotta be hurting him.

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from pittrehab wrote 2 years 50 weeks ago

That is not the type of buck I would like to see while bowhunting. I think it's a freak and not what I would want reproduced on a large scale.

Accessible Hunter

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from nchase1924 wrote 2 years 50 weeks ago

I feel like this deer needs to be seen by a veterinary oncologist for a round of chemo treatment. Those antler mutations literally look cancerous! It's really a travesty that someone is making money of this poor fella. I'm very much a traditionalist when it comes to my view of the outdoors but I have my consessions too. Even though I prefer "fair chase" rules like most sportsman, I've learned that there are advantages for high fence areas. This is mainly for those who are disabled and would not be able to have that opportunity in the field. This deer is strictly a sideshow act. But I can't take all the credit away from him. He's the Barry Bonds of deer (still a bad thing). Pumped full of 'roids but taking a needle in the tucus doesn't make you have the talent and technique to hit the ball solidly and consistently. If this deer was to be released into the wild after a lot of rehabilitation it might pass on some great genetics but we all know that will most likely never happen. We all should take notice of what a great deer is NEVER supposed to look like.

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from pudgexl29 wrote 2 years 48 weeks ago

that is a freak of nature. you would think that a buck that big would be a larger bodied deer. it didn't look real big in the video

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from stickngar21 wrote 2 years 20 weeks ago

The thing looks miserable with all that weight he's gotta hold up. And looks ugly as crap. I'd shoot him to get him out of the herd

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from Berserker wrote 2 years 19 weeks ago

The deer doesn't look very healthy. Poor coat and not that big of a body. Nothing to see here.

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from Silverback wrote 2 years 50 weeks ago

jbird, My point is that the bucks neck muscles could handle the situation, as it does durning the rut. And that buck is way more healthy than any wild buck. I is feed the best stuff avalible and I dosen't have to even find it, plus he gets it all winter long. I fact the reason for such and amazing rack is BECAUSE it is exteremly heatlhy.

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from Silverback wrote 2 years 50 weeks ago

Wow amazing. I think most of you are crazy to think the buck is in pain, or should be put down. You must not spend much time around deer in the woods. He can bulk up his neck and carry the antlers when ever he wants to. If you have seen a rutting bucks neck compared to what they look like now, you know what I am talking about. Plus, he not nearly stuggling. I've seen deer with an entire leg missing that I wouldn't put down because they are survivors. By the way, he is a MONEY MAKER for this business and if they thought he was stressed, they would cut the antlers off. His sperm is where the money is, not his rack.

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