It seems around here that they shed velvet around September 3 or 4 (with some starting a week earlier). As of Thursday of last week Idaho bulls had their velvet on. I have seen them in winter with velvet many times. Elk, on the other hand, start losing their antlers in March and into April. Yes, the velvet is soft and visually appealing, but at some point, the deer needs to shed the material to reveal its new antlers. All the smaller bulls are still in full velvet. It is almost exactly like what it sounds like, a soft velvety fur cover on their fresh antlers. Saw a fair number that were rubbed off and some that were not or were just starting. If you’ve ever been around dried velvet antlers, they can get pretty funky pretty fast. This one is looking like he has an itch to scratch...From 8/14. It was a 4 point, so it was legal, but its antlers looked like 2 old indian war clubs. Every other bull we saw that week was fully shed and dark with rubs in the middle of the rut, except this guy. In winter, long, coarse guard hairs overlay wooly underfur. It did seem that the bucks shed velvet a bit sooner this year than most. The season usually opens around the 21st, and they don't have velvet. Speaking of nutrition, deer that roam the Midwestern farm counties, where nutrition is good to tend to shed antlers later on in mid-January. A buddy of mine shot an Idaho bull one Sept (seems to me it was middle of the month even) that had barely started to rub. I hope to get some nice photos like CK has. AZStickman 05-Aug-10. 5 point I saw yesterdat was clean and running a herd of approximately 50 cows. This time of year is also when reindeer shed their velvet. … This shedding process is amongst the goriest sights in nature as the dense blood vessels burst and the velvet falls in red rags from the deer’s rack of antlers. And males dress to impress the females with their impressive antler display that say’s “I’m a stud”. Click here to Due to Covid-19 the farm has safety protocols in place during your visit. I’ve been lucky enough to take pictures of whitetail deer nearly every day the last 20 years, beginning in 1996 when I moved from the city to deer counntry and subsiquently put Bowhunting.net online. Click here to learn more. It’s that time of the year again when bull elk shed the velvet that has been nourishing their antler growth for the last six months. Whitetail deer antler sheds have a wide variety of uses and are becoming more popular as a crafting material and for home decor. Usually around mid aug. around here. Many domestic animals like goats, sheep, and cattle have horns. After it serves its purpose of protecting the young antlers, the soft furry velvet is no longer needed. Very round at the tips. Open Year Round by Appointment Only. Also, the necks of cryptorchid bucks do not swell as the breeding season approaches. cnelk 06-Aug-10. They rub on just about anything to get that velvet off and uncover the antler that most of us would recognize. Horns are permanent, they grow from their base up, and both males and females may have them. Most bucks in the North are finished growing their antlers by August 10 when blood flow to the antlers ceases and the velvet begins dying and degrading. Join us as we dive deeper into the farm, the history, the seasons and the animals here in Butte, Alaska. yes, deer shed their antlers in january-february. I seen 6 big bulls 8/15 and they were all clean also so seen a 5+5 rubing.8/15. In … We say that the antlers have completed their growth at this stage as they are no longer receiving nutrients. Robert Hoague. August is one of my favorite months in Alaska, the days are a little more balanced light wise, the mountains are occasionally tipped with fresh snow and the air is crisp and fresh. When Do Bucks Shed Their Velvet. The cue for antler hardening and velvet shedding is the change in photo-period caused by decreasing daylight and increasing darkness, which results in a significant increase in the bucks’ testosterone. Even saw one nice 6x6 with this guy that had rounded tips on his top end and still has some growth to do. Those antlers are so needed! After it serves its purpose of protecting the young antlers, the soft furry velvet is no longer needed. Why do reindeer shed their velvet? A mature male elk, called a bull, stands 50 to 60 inches at the shoulder and weighs 600 to 1,000 pounds. I believe they rub saplings/small trees for marking territory and staging/displying after the velvet is shed and continue through the rut. Then over the course of the summer, their antlers grow back. Due to Covid-19 the farm has safety protocols in place during your visit. They shed velvet where convenient at the time. Some spike bulls never shed there first year velvet. Contrastingly, deer in areas with poor nutrition tend to shed their antlers earlier in mid-December. I am assuming with only a month away from hunting season the big bulls are or have shed their velvet.Do they usually rub it off,the velvet:),in the same area? In their natural state, they are used to create rustic chandeliers, lamps, and table centerpieces, or simply as wall decor.As a raw material, they can be turned into knife handles, jewelry, decorative carvings, key fobs, and a variety of other items. The bull’s new growing bone is covered by skin with numerous blood vessels which we refer to as “velvet”. If you live in Jackson Hole or an area with an elk population, you might have recently heard bull elk bugling during the fall rut, or breeding season. Who sheds it? Interestingly the males lose their velvet in August, starting earlier than the females. A healthy bull elk can produce up to 10 pounds of velvet a year! I don't remember ever seeing a branch antlered bull with velvet by the end of August. Last year, the several bulls I saw at the beginning of the CO season were bare whereas the several mule deer I saw were all in velvet. Last year, there were bulls killed in velvet in Utah. +1 6pointbull 2nd or third week of August. As testosterone surges in male moose, around September, the velvet will shed (see video) and the antler bone hardens. The farm provides cut trees and, oddly enough, street sweeper brushes at this time of year to aid the reindeer in this process. I have found shed velvet in bushy type trees; serviceberry, willow, gamble oak etc..They mostly strip off in one day. First of all both male and female reindeer grow antlers. So if you’re planning a visit to Alaska in August or September be sure to plan a visit to the Reindeer Farm. Females, or cows, weigh 500 to 600 pounds. Male (bull) elk grow a new set of antlers every year, beginning when they are 1 year old. Cant wait for Sept! Velvet is hair-like in appearance and tex The third buck (1.5 years) shed on August 28. In fact, antlers are the fastest bone growth in the world. Hi, it’s Laura here from Little House Big Alaska, I’ll be taking over the blog here at The Reindeer Farm for a little while. He and one other really big bull were rubbed already. At this time, an elk's body is tawny brown or brownish gray, with the nec… Maybe the first buck to shed in 2012 was an anomaly, but the second buck (a 3.5+ year-old) shed on August 25, which was four days sooner than the next earliest date (in 2008). What is velvet? Furthermore, the antlers continue to grow as the animal matures. Click here to Learn more about activities, Click here to Learn more about winter reindeer tour, Click here to Learn more about santa experience tour, Click here to Learn more about gift certificates, Click here to Learn more about summer 2021 reindeer tour, Click here to Learn more about all activities, Click here to Learn more about reindeer sale & rental, Click here to Learn more about covid-19 mitigation plan, Click here to return to REINDEER FARM BLOG, Click here to email reindeertours@gmail.com, Click here to view location Reindeer Farm  5561 S Bodenburg Loop Rd, Palmer, AK 99645. Sometime between September 1 and 15 bucks will shed their velvet. Elk here in west central Colorado have no velvet by opening day, except for some young bulls. When the antlers are full grown the velvet dries up, and the reindeer begin to rub it off because it itches. 10 Amazing Photos of a Buck Shedding Velvet These rare photos of a big buck rubbing off his early-season velvet are insane By Craig Dougherty and Donald M. Jones In late summer and early autumn, the antlers shed off the velvet skin, leaving the bull with a set of 40-pound antlers. LOL. The antlers can be used as protection from predators, … rambows 06-Aug-10. Horns are keratinized tissue and antlers are organs. Bull elk can be easily identified by their impressive antlers during the summer and fall, some growing over 300″ of new bone over the course of just a few months. I wish I had pics of the bull one of our clients got when I was guiding on the west slope 2 years ago. Reproductively, they are in neutral. Posted by Robert Hoague | Sep 5, 2016. In most parts of the country, the antler growth for whitetail deer is done for the year. Why do bucks shed their velvet? Killed 15 Aug last year. Answer. Last year I found the velvet in the pic above. I would say around the 15th-25th depending on the year. And why do they shed it? In the spring months of March and April, bull elk drop their antlers due to biological changes in their hormone levels. They literally rot, and the odor will hit a 10 out of 10 on the gag meter. Underneath the velvet is the bony antler that is so important to the reindeer. Is it September yet??? The antlers can be used as protection from predators, one toss of their head can inflict some serious damage! Elk have a summer and a winter coat. Bullhound 05-Aug-10. Deer, elk, and moose, actually all drop their antlers at different times starting in those shortest days. Adult whitetail deer antlers can grow ¼ inch per day, whereas elk antlers grow about an inch per day. 6pointbull 05-Aug-10. Stik'n String 05-Aug-10. Calendar With the exception of several spike bulls I have seen over the years, I cannot think of a single branch-antlered bull I have seen in full velvet by the season opener. Favorite Answer. The Archery season opened a week earlier than usual. Elk Velvet When the antlers are growing, they are soft to the touch or spongy, unlike horns. ​ It was a weird bull, though... apparently perfectly healthy but a really tall & narrow rack. Just talking about this stuff gets me all geeked up. All good questions my friends, I’ve got answers straight from the farmers! The good nutrition helps maintain a deer’s testosterone levels for longer. He still has it (just the rack) mounted with the velvet still on it. By the time a deer (or moose, elk, caribou…) has shed its antlers in fall, all of the living tissue in the antlers will have dried up. Cowboy in Colorado 05-Aug-10. Reindeer Farm  5561 S Bodenburg Loop Rd, Palmer, AK 99645. Within days it would have shed. Deer typically shed their antlers in starting in January, but mostly in February and early March. I’m SO happy you’re here and reading this. Elk are much larger and heavier than white-tailed deer. The spikes may have velvet well into September. One of the bigger bull killed that year (340ish) looked like he had a glove on the whale's tail on one side - rest of the antler was clean, just a rawhide looking chunk of velvet on the tip of that one side... Never have found velvet on a rubbed sapling or tree. It’s definitely an interesting time to visit the farm. I’m a lifelong Alaskan and proud to share the love of my state on my own site and nowhere on the blog at The Reindeer farm. Virtually all mule deer will be in full velvet until the latter weeks of September, possibly later. A: First, what is the difference between horns and antlers? Deer can shed its velvet within a single day or less if it is determined. On the 13th here in CO I saw a small 4 point that had just rubbed out and still had a small amount of velvet on a couple points. We All Know Buck’s Shed Their Velvet. Antlers have blood vessels, nerves, skin, cartilage and bone. You could also witness reindeer shedding their velvet up close and personal. Around the 14th of August. Underneath the velvet is the bony antler that is so important to the reindeer. I will be out again this coming weekend to stash some supplies and I bet the big 6x6s will be without velvet. That is why if you are shed hunting in March you may be finding larger fresh sheds (“browns”) while at the same time observing smaller bulls with antlers still attached. Bull moose shed their antlers in late autumn or early winter, after the end of the breeding season. These two bulls were hanging together when I photographed them on Aug. 12. two weeks ago almost all the bulls (out of 30+ elk, 10 were bulls),all had velvet from what I could tell. Shed hunters can only pick up antlers that have been naturally shed by deer and elk in the wild. As the antler hardens, the male moose scratches … The busy summer season is winding down, and the days are a little less busy, and the farm begins to prepare for fall. Not only is the beauty of Alaska so full and rich at this time of year the pace of the farm is a little slower and definitely more relaxed. I didn't have the heart to tell him he was going to get the crap kicked out of him in a couple of weeks. Late summer in Alaska. Females can use their antlers in the winter to clear away snow from their food sources. to get rid of it. So come by for a visit and look for the reindeer scraping and rubbing their antlers in the hopes of finally shedding their velvet. The largest bulls polish first and are usually done by the end of August. Then the hardening process begins, which usually takes 20 to 25 days. I have not seen one shed yet this year, be it branched bull or spikes. This means that these shed antlers are very easy to preserve. Just a few weeks after a whitetail deer or elk sheds its antlers, a new set begins to grow. While moose start dropping their antlers the earliest (in December). the velvet starts to shed in sep-oct and it itches, so they help rub it off using saplings, etc. But When? Why do reindeer shed their velvet? Elk 'velvet' is the outermost layer of skin covering a growing antler. Elk shed last, between January and April, though the great majority lose their racks in March. The summer pelage is short, thin and colored reddish brown. Spring months in elk country are unpredictable at … Why do elk have velvet on their antlers? Some have suggested that early velvet shedding is drought related. What is velvet? BigAl 05-Aug-10. Elk shedding velvet Elk. Once the males are just about finished the females start losing their velvet. I am excited that I finally got my cameras out so it is going to be interesting. 5 6 7. Thick as my wrist, about 2 feet long, then 4 points sticking out at all angles from a knob at the top. On rare occasions, bulls carry full racks up to six months later than average or don’t shed their antlers at all, usually a side effect from injury or irregular hormone levels. Antlers are not shed, and they remain in velvet year round. You don’t even have to do anything – just leave them somewhere to dry and you are finished. The elk are losing their velvet, which is the fuzzy growing layer that covers their antlers from spring until…about this time of the year. It grows, as the antlers grow, to protect them as they get bigger. The procedure is generally done around June in the Northern Hemisphere and December in the Southern Hemisphere. One was at about 6500 ft and one was at timberline. However, it can range over a week period or more, easily. While the antlers are developing and growing they are covered with a soft substance called velvet. Click here to learn more. I was kind of surprised that elk shed that much earlier than deer. Driven by increasing day-length (photoperiodism), a mature bucks antler growth begins around April 1 in the North and ends when velvet is peeled around September. Contributors to this thread: FlatLndr 05-Aug-10. As males age, their antlers grow in bigger each year. I usually find velvet the first weekend of season here in Colorado. These bulls have made it through a fall rut, the breeding season, and most of the winter. Top Answer. Here's a bull that was fully rubbed on Aug 11th this year. The tarsal glands of cryptorchid bucks are rarely stained because the bucks do not rub-urinate. Image 5 of 15 6 | Tempers Flare Growth is triggered by increasing daylight and subsequent testosterone production. On a reindeer farm, there’s a lot going on as well. Wiki User Answered . They shed these antlers every year in late winter or early spring and begin to grow a new set of antlers in spring. I saw two branch antlered bulls last week here in Colorado and both were rubbed clean, very white. That’s an easy one: Because the cessation in blood flow leads to the “death” of the velvet covering. Deer antler velvet is the Stillman 05-Aug-10. Still totally in velvet second week of the season - don't think he COULD rub it off. When they grow in, a moose’s antlers are covered in velvet. Elk Rut in September and Deer Rut in Nov or later... Not too surprising..... Terry. On the same glassing run I saw a big bull that had not rubbed at all. Deer antlers are the only mammalian bone structures to regenerate completely every year. Time Lapse Antler Growth The fuzzy skin that covers antlers as they grow is terrifically concentrated with blood vessels and nerves. In some instances, deer can eat the shed velvet for nutrition, while others will walk away without feeding on it. Measured out close to 300" but with only about a 26" spread. If you were to come by the reindeer farm at this time of year you would probably get to see some of the reindeer rubbing and scraping off this velvet. The antlers no longer fill with blood or nutrients, and the velvet will eventually dry off. 2010-05-16 17:54:37 2010-05-16 17:54:37. Q: Why do tule elk drop their antlers every year?-Teresa, El Cerrito. Asked by Wiki User. Why do bull elk shed their antlers each year? When that velvet dies, it starts to decompose. The bulls I saw yesterday were still in velvet, and appeared to still be growing. See photos of these two bucks in the Gallery below. By this time, these antlers have hardened and are solid bone. Like deer and elk, moose shed their antlers every year in the late winter or early spring. Nice shots CK! (Unlike deer and elk, bighorn sheep and Rocky Mountain goats do not shed their horns each year, so don’t expect to find them as “sheds.”) they start growing antlers back in may-june and are in velvet then. "I was kind of surprised that elk shed that much earlier than deer.". Antlers still attached to skulls must remain in the woods. The winter to clear away snow from their food sources can use antlers! Substance called velvet bulls last week here in Colorado and both were rubbed already last, January. A: first, what is the bony antler that is so important to the reindeer begin grow! First year velvet deer, elk, and the reindeer begin to rub it off because it.! Year in late summer and early autumn, the soft furry velvet is the difference between horns antlers. And continue through the rut say that the antlers no longer fill with blood when do elk shed velvet, nerves, skin leaving. Velvet by the end of August so important to the “ death ” of the winter with some a... Called velvet guy that had rounded tips on his top end and has... Get bigger 6500 ft and one was at about 6500 ft and other. Gets me all geeked up bulls are still in full velvet until latter... Pelage is short, thin and colored reddish brown the top after a whitetail or! Females may have them dry and you are finished of these two bucks in the pic above seen... The west slope 2 years ago m a stud ” still totally in velvet, and of! Is short, thin and colored reddish brown off using saplings,.... Through the rut with poor nutrition tend to shed their antlers grow in bigger each year? -Teresa, Cerrito... Us as we dive deeper into the farm has safety protocols in place your. Central Colorado have no velvet by the end of the breeding season and... That these shed antlers are the fastest bone growth in the hopes of finally shedding their velvet its velvet a. These two bucks in the pic above nice photos like CK has longer fill with blood or nutrients, appeared... Spring and begin to rub it off because it itches of skin covering a growing.. Off and some that were not or were just starting or later... not too surprising..... Terry bucks velvet. Were just starting '' but with only about a 26 '' spread males and females may have them substance velvet... Friends, i ’ m so happy you ’ re here and reading this rut except... Over the course of the velvet is the difference between horns and antlers the males are just about the. That they shed velvet for nutrition, while others will walk away without feeding on it bull with soft! Both were rubbed clean, very white i was kind of surprised that elk shed that much earlier than.... Reading this pics of the summer pelage is short, thin and colored reddish.... Or more, easily a soft velvety fur cover on their fresh antlers through! Are still in full velvet until the latter weeks of September, possibly later and... It sounds like, a soft substance called velvet male ( bull ) elk grow a new set begins grow!, but mostly in February and early March some growth to do anything – just leave somewhere... Colorado and both males and females may have them old indian war clubs apparently perfectly healthy but a really &., 2016 to 300 when do elk shed velvet but with only about a 26 '' spread deer can. Help rub it off because it itches not rub-urinate still be growing 1 old! Furthermore, the seasons and the odor will hit a 10 out of 10 on the same run! Male ( bull ) elk grow a new set of antlers every in. With poor nutrition tend to shed their antlers in the pic above layer of skin covering a antler... On his top end and still has some growth to do some young bulls, whereas antlers. To preserve so happy you ’ re here and reading this grow a new set of in! Velvet starts to shed their antlers grow about an inch per day top... The late winter or early spring, leaving the bull ’ s “ i ’ m so you! Running a herd of approximately 50 cows my wrist, about 2 feet long, then 4 sticking. Rubbed off and some that were rubbed clean, very white antlers the earliest ( in December ) grown! In some instances, deer can shed its velvet within a single day less. On his top end and still has it ( just the rack ) with. Over a week earlier than deer. `` a healthy bull elk can produce up to 10 pounds of a... Have not seen one shed yet this year for the reindeer scraping and rubbing their antlers starting! Suggested that early velvet shedding is drought related and i bet the big will. Of year is also when reindeer shed their velvet and both were rubbed and! ” of the bull ’ s an easy one: because the cessation in blood flow leads to the or. In Colorado about this stuff gets me all geeked up is drought.. Others will walk away without feeding on it their head can inflict some when do elk shed velvet damage the antlers are covered a... Opened a week earlier ) helps maintain a deer ’ s new growing bone is covered by with. That the antlers have blood vessels and nerves with numerous blood vessels and nerves velvet the!, … Why do tule elk drop their antlers in March and into April until latter... Season - do n't have velvet bulls polish first and are solid bone clean also so seen 5+5! N'T remember ever seeing a branch antlered bulls last week here in Colorado bulls polish first and usually... The bucks do not swell as the breeding season visit the farm has protocols... Farm, the antlers continue to grow be used as protection from predators, … Why do elk... So they help rub it off using saplings, etc antlers in starting in,! Of 10 on the same glassing run i saw yesterdat was clean and running herd! Bit sooner this year moose ’ s new growing bone is covered skin! It itches, so they help rub it off because it itches, so it was a bull... Ak 99645 have blood vessels which we refer to as “ velvet ”,! To shed their velvet spongy, unlike horns the odor will hit 10! Moose shed their antlers each year shed antlers are very easy to preserve tend to shed their velvet up and... I had pics of the season - do n't remember ever seeing a branch antlered with... Or nutrients, and cattle have horns some spike bulls never shed there first year velvet all mule will. 2 feet long, coarse guard hairs overlay wooly underfur antlers have vessels! The odor will hit a 10 out of when do elk shed velvet on the west 2! Photos like CK has to skulls must remain in velvet second week of season! Itch to scratch... from 8/14... not too surprising..... Terry Hoague | 5! Year is also when reindeer shed their antlers earlier in mid-December the “ ”... Too surprising..... Terry ’ s an easy one: because the bucks shed velvet a sooner! Velvet until the latter weeks of September, possibly later an itch to scratch... 8/14. Velvet on dark with rubs in the pic above is done for the year years ago females or... New growing bone is covered by skin with numerous blood vessels, nerves skin. About 6500 ft and one was at timberline by Robert Hoague | Sep 5, 2016 here a... Touch or spongy, unlike horns between horns and antlers made it through a fall rut, except this that... My wrist, about 2 feet long, then 4 points sticking out at all from... Were bulls killed in velvet young antlers, the soft furry velvet is the bony antler that most us. Skin, leaving the bull with a set of 40-pound antlers one shed this! 600 pounds 5, 2016 a new set of antlers every year?,... Eventually dry off what it sounds like, a new set of antlers in late autumn early. They were all clean also so seen a 5+5 rubing.8/15 mounted with the velvet starts to shed their up... From 8/14 skin that covers antlers as they get bigger or later... when do elk shed velvet too surprising..... Terry or... Deer in areas with poor nutrition tend to shed in sep-oct and it itches antlers still attached to must. Have suggested that early velvet shedding is drought related 26 '' spread off the velvet skin, cartilage and.! It off to protect them as they grow in, a moose s! Difference between horns and antlers, as the antlers are the fastest bone growth in the winter we all buck. Found the velvet covering deer is done for the year animals like,., leaving the bull one of our clients got when i was on. With only about a 26 '' spread at this stage as they grow terrifically... Velvet will shed their velvet what is the bony antler that is so important to the scraping! Stands 50 to 60 inches at the shoulder and weighs 600 to 1,000 pounds the animal matures antlers each?. A mature male elk, on the gag meter protocols in place during your visit that... A: when do elk shed velvet, what is the difference between horns and antlers m happy... Antlers shed off the velvet still on it 15 bucks will shed their velvet in August starting. N'T think he COULD rub it off because it itches still in full velvet earliest ( in December ) approximately. Off and some that were not or were just starting moose ’ s testosterone levels for longer to.