If you are like we were, we seen this deer and didn't have a clue that it even existed! Just another Texas Exotic that we get to learn more about! These Texas Exotics are so fascinating, and you just never know what you may see while you are in Texas. These animals are not known to so many of us and that is what makes them so fascinating! Just like you, we are just learning about this animal. So with that being said, here is a little background on this beauty! By the way, their ears are my favorite :).
This my friends are what they call, a Barasingha Deer. A what!? Yep, that's what i said too! Get this, they can live 20-30 YEARS!!!! WOW! They are also commonly known as "swamp deer" and they are primarily from India. They grow to be very large deer. The males will weigh 390 to 570 pounds and the females up to 300 pounds plus. That would definitely fill a freezer! They have a yellow-brown coat and stand approximately 4 feet tall. Males are generally darker in color than females. Tufts of hair can often be seen hanging out of the large ears of both sexes. The antlers appear only on males and grow in a C-shape from a profile view. The number of antler points can vary greatly, but 10 to 16 (5 to 8 points per side) is common. A brow tine near the base of each antler is typical, with the majority of the points concentrated near the ends of the arching antler beams. Each point from the main beam may fork once or more. Forking in the mid-tine is most common, but not always. Mature male antlers measure from 30 to 35 inches in length, but can grow to reach 42 inches plus. Females do not grow antlers. The shedding of antler velvet takes place in late August to September and they usually drop antlers in February.
Barasingha deer refer to inhabit marshes or swamp lands and like to feed in open grasslands and take shelter in brush during heat of the day and harsh weather conditions. Males create wallows and gather harems of females during breeding season and they use smell as their primary sense for detecting danger, just like most animals. They will drink twice a day during the hottest parts of the year which i find interesting. Males will fight for dominance and the right to breed females. The breeding season extends from September to April in most states, with a spike in rutting activity seen in December and January. The Barasingha deer are the only exotic deer that are monestrous -- females only come into estrous once a year. Gestation lasts 8 months and females give birth to only 1 young per season. This low birth rate lends to a naturally low recruitment rate (animals reaching breeding age).
Thanks Joe Reed of Mountain Home Hunting Service for introducing us to these beautiful exotic deer. Learning about animals that you didn't even know existed is always fun and you never know, we may be back to take one of these trophies ourselves one day! Be sure to check out our buddy Joe Reed if this is an animal you would be interested in taking :)
Hunting an Eastern gobbler in the hardwoods is a tactical chess match that demands your best calling and the perfect setup.
We just got back from our Spring Gobbler Hunt at Southern Va Outfitters. We had such a good time and Johnny, was an incredible guide. We got on gobblers both Saturday and Sunday morning. Saturday, I was up and first thing we had one gobbling off the roost. He was with some hens and we just couldn't connect with him then the weather turned horrible and we faced 40 mile per hour winds. We didn't give up and hunted the rest of the morning. We even got to do a little spot and stalking on another gobbler in the field, but we couldn't connect with him either.
Sunday morning, we got on another gobbler first thing. This gobbler was coming in perfectly, but as it turns out I was the camera man and I could not see the turkey. We learned a very valuable lesson... For anyone who is filming their hunts, make sure that your camera or camera person has the same line of sight as the shooter. We weren't set up like we should've been therefore Teddy didn't pull the trigger when he definitely could of. Lessons learned and God is still good! We had a blast though and the hospitality of Southern Va Outfitters was top notch and we hope to be back again very soon! Thanks again Johnny for your hospitality and putting us on turkeys both days!
Here is a little video to show how I am a wimp and can't hold my shotgun down when we were shooting..but I think I shot better then Teddy ;) Make sure to watch both videos completely through to see who is the better shot!
Wow did we ever have fun in Texas! I don't know if you know or or have heard much about Axis Deer, but they are beautiful and hard to hunt! Here is a little background on this beautiful exotic animal!
AXIS DEER. The axis deer, or chital (Cervus axis Erxleben), is native to the Indian subcontinent. It is considered to be the most beautiful of deer, with a bright reddish coat marked with rows of white spots that persist throughout life. Antlers of males are large but simple, usually with only three points. Adult males weigh up to 200 pounds and females 35 percent less. The axis deer was first introduced into Texas in the 1930s and now occurs in at least forty-five counties. Largest numbers occur on the Edwards Plateau, where the semiopen, dry scrub forest vegetation resembles that of its native habitat in India. Essential habitat components include water, woody vegetation for cover, and open areas for feeding. This deer is primarily a grazer, but its food habits are very general, and it can exist quite easily on forbs and woody browse. In contrast to the white-tailed deer, which typically eats only a few foods, the axis deer eats small quantities of a large variety of plant species. This broad-spectrum diet gives it an advantage in competition with other deer.
The reproductive activity of the axis occurs year-round, but most breeding occurs in June and July. Single fawns are born the following spring after a 7½-month gestation period. During the breeding period males bellow loudly and wander in search of receptive females. Females mature sexually and first breed at fourteen to seventeen months of age. Males are probably capable of breeding as yearlings but must achieve adult size to compete for females.
The basic social unit is a family group that consists of an older female and her offspring. A herd consists of two or more family groups. Other social groupings consist of loosely structured male herds and, between February and April, nursery herds composed of females with fawns. Vocalizations are important in axis deer society and one of the most noticeable characteristics of this animal.
Axis deer are more active by day than by night, with greatest activity occurring for two to three hours after dawn and again before dark. The size of the home range varies with habitat and averages 2½ square miles in the coastal live oak region. Axis deer do not seem to be territorial, but males fight, often with serious consequences, for possession of females.
In Texas the major predators of the axis are coyotes and bobcats, but predation does not seem to be serious. Axis deer are also remarkably resistant to disease, a fact that may help explain their success as introduced animals.
With few exceptions, axis deer are not regulated by game laws. They are landowners' property and may be bought, sold, or hunted at any time. Therefore, they are important in sports hunting and offer hunting opportunities at times when native species are not available. Ranchers stock them for this purpose, and this practice explains their wide distribution in the state. As a sporting animal, the axis deer provides a fine trophy. The meat is of excellent quality and lacks the strong game flavor sometimes associated with venison.
There is your history lesson on the beautifully exotic Axis! Can't wait for this episode to air 2017!
Hey yall! The sun is shining and the weather is finally warming up! Yay! We have been seeing tons of turkeys out in the fields and in the woods! It's almost time for our first official hunt of the year! We are heading to Southern Virginia Outfitters for some Turkey hunting! We can't wait to hear that first Gobble...there isn't much more that can make a heart feel like its about to burst out of your chest then a strutting Turkey! Stay tuned for more updates and keep checking out our facebook as well for our latest updates! Thanks for following! May God Bless you and Happy Easter :)
1 Corinthians 2:9 “Eye has not seen, nor ear heard, nor have entered into the heart of man the things which God has prepared for those who love Him.”
Be sure to Check out Southern Virginia Outfitters! Tell them we sent you :)
As the weather is changing and the sun is starting to shine, our minds start to daydream about hearing that first turkey gobble on opening day, but before we can go there, we wanted to take you down memory lane with us. We wanted to take you back to Texas with us on one of our hog hunts from last summer. We were out using our Sniper Hog Lights in hopes of bringing home some bacon, but little did ol' Teddy know, he was in for an even bigger surprise! Now, what you probably don't know, it that Teddy is afraid of those little creatures we call snakes! You know the ones that slither around and bite us with that poisonous venom, that little creature that God made sure would only get to slither on it's belly for the rest of it's days! Let's just say, the rattlesnake is not one of Teddy's friends.
Thanks to our good buddy Joe Reed with Mountain Home Hunting Service, we were able to get an up close and personal look at this beautiful deadly creature that caused poor Teddy to sweat. For those of you that know Teddy, you know that he does not break a sweat, but once he came into contact with this little ol' rattlesnake, Tedrow made sure that that creature was not to crawl ever again! Boy would I have LOVED to see the look on Teddy's face when he saw this little ol' snake! :)