Last Edited:
July 28, 2012

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  • Missouri Deer Timeline
  • July
  • August
  • Sept
  • October
  • November
  • December
  • January

    Missouri Deer Timeline


    • Pre 1800 Est. 1 million Whitetail Deer in Missouri 1890 Deer gone completely from northern and western Missouri. 

    • 1900 Deer gone from Missouri 1925 Deer census taken 395 deer over 23 counties 1934 Deer census taken 2240 deer in 28 counties near state refuges. 

    • 1941 Hunting permits are $2.00 1944 Est. deer population state wide is 15,000.
    • 1950 Est. deer population is 122,142. 

    • 1955 Est. deer 211,427 Archery tag is $5.00 and Rifle $5.00 Up to 1957 Deer season, methods, limits, and places were released on Oct 1.

    • 1958 Only one deer may be taken by one person during the year. Also in this year Muzzleloader was mentioned the use of 38cal and up. Also the use of Pistols and Revolvers is mentioned.

    • 1960 Est. deer pop is 300,712 Only one deer limit still applies tags are $5.25 1965 Est. deer pop is 389,997 1970 Est. deer pop is 479,139 Deer tag is $7.50 plus .30 charge 1975 Est. deer pop is 568,567. 

    • 1980 Est. deer pop is 657,852 Deer tag is $7.50. 

    • 1982 Deer season set for the first Saturday nearest November 15. 

    • 1985 Est. deer pop 747,137. 

    • 1988 First Muzzleloader season and permit of $8.00. 

    • 1990 Est. deer pop are 836,422 a deer tag cost $10.00. 

    • 1991-92 Muzzleloader season set for first Saturday in December. 

    • 1995 Est. deer pop is 925,707. 

    • 1998 Deer tag is $11.00 Any deer tag $11.00 Bonus doe tag is $11.00 Second bonus doe tag is $11.00. 

    • 1999 Archery deer set for October 1-January15 2000 Est. deer pop is 1,014,992 Deer tag is $15.00.

    • 2001 First youth season mentioned. 

    • 2003 Urban and antlerless season mentioned.

    • 2004 4 point restriction mentioned 2005 Est. deer pop is 1,146,789 Muzzleloader season is nov25-dec4 2007 Antlerless season is Dec 8-16 2008 Antlerless season is Dec 13-21. 

    • 2009 Antlerless season is Nov 25-dec 6 Muzzleloader is Dec 19-29 2010 Missouri allows deer to be hunted with the Atlatl. 

    Until next month, get back to nature

July content deer in summer

As summer heat rises most folks are sitting in there ac not really thinking about Missouri deer. Maybe about the upcoming season and or the drawings for managed hunts they put in for. To really know deer, it helps to know there habits all year long .Summer deer may not have far to go for food, so why is it that some deer look so thin? Well number one they are in there summer coat, which means they have shed the long thick winter coat in the spring , you may notice the color of the fur has changed, this is normal and changes throughout the seasons. Also deer fall prey to all sorts of insects, ticks. Yes a heavy infestation can weaken a deer to the point of death. Also flies constantly biting deer cause them to move and expend energy. Also we can’t forget, does are feeding fawns and bucks are growing antlers. All of this can cause animals to look thin. Deer usually during the summer, do a lot of moving at night, its cooler, also one thing we need to remember, there are not a lot of people in the woods this time of year, so if the deer have food and water close, they may not move at all.

One thing to remember, a good knowledge on plants will also help locate deer this time of year, and even in the winter, why you might ask? Well deer are like humans in some ways, if its good and its available they will eat it ,if it’s not available they’ll move on to the next best thing available to them (also we will mow trails through woods or fields for walking paths deer actually use these trails quite heavily) .Back to the plants, if you find out what plants thrive in the different seasons, you have just unlocked an important secret to locating deer, remember grasses and plants react to hot and cold , what a deer eats in the spring maybe dormant in the summer (which means the plant has slowed or shut down its production of sugars which can be desirable to deer which also means they are looking for another food that is not effected by the summer heat)then the plant starts to produce again in the fall and then goes completely dormant over the winter, so basically we can educate ourselves on deer while we are sitting in the ac. We can read up on Missouri grasses and plants and wildflowers, then what I've done is walk these deer trails or mowed trails, and look for browsing, and then key them out in my books, and i make maps, yes even in summer on were these plants are. Deer will a lot of times revisit these plants, or be in the area, and this area might make a good early bow hunt site.


Take the same care as you would during the deer season, don't leave anything behind! These are tips that i use, that have been successful for me tracking and locating deer.

Well till next month get back to nature.

Aug Content 

Antler growth in Missouri whitetail 

When we look for whitetail deer we are usually looking for big antlers. There is something that stirs the soul when an awesome buck slams through the brush snorts and stands looking at you proudly, showing those white glossy antlers he has just grown this summer season. I know my heart skips a beat.


Well let’s get started at the beginning. The buck fawn is born with two bumps on the top of its head, these are called (Pedicels).It is said if you were to cut this skin off and transplant it would grow an antler where it was placed. Bucks will grow their first set of antlers in their second spring, what spurs this on you might ask? Increasing hours of daylight in spring start up the pituitary gland to start growth, usually in Missouri this is April or May.

As antlers start growing the nerves hold the record for the highest growth rate 1/2"per day . Inside the velvet the antlers need to have these nerves to prevent damage to antler growth to keep the deer from bumping them and damaging them .Antlers are made up of 80% protein 20% calcium, and as the antler grows the base remains the oldest part of the antler growth. Veins transport the nutrients in the blood for the antler production. The antlers can be grown in 14 weeks.

Some important facts that dictate antler growth are nutrition and genetics. Most deer start shedding /rubbing velvet in Sept what causes this ?




The production of testosterone before the breeding season initiates the drop of velvet .The blood supply is cut off and the velvet starts to dry out, and fall off. Also the buck will rub it off on sapling trees .As the antlers harden the buck will continue to rub and polish the antlers. Inside the chemical makeup of the antler has changed also, it is now 63%base(ash)22%calcium 11%phosphorus 4%organic matter (as the deer ages the antler become porous ).


During the fall and winter, the buck will use his antlers for dominating other bucks for breeding rights to does. As the winter goes on with the breeding season over. The production of testosterone decreases ,causing the base of the antler to come loose, this may also be set into action by lack of nourishment, because the weaker bucks will lose their antlers first, and the healthy ones can carry antlers into February .


The pedicel grows over and next spring it starts all over again. One thing to remember, when antlers are growing, cuts and scrapes that damage the velvet can cause calcium to build up causing spurs, strange tips or points. And if the pedicel is damaged it can cause weird antler growth the entire life of the buck.

        Well till next month, get back to nature

September Content

Trailing tips

As you sneak through the woods, to that special spot. You may be standing against a tree or climbing into a stand. As you wait and listen to the woods, you hear a stick pop! You look to your left. A squirrel, NO! It’s a big eight pointer walking through the woods. The thoughts racing through your mind, your hearts skipping beats and you’re saying to yourself. 10 more yards just 10 more yards. You draw your bow, and release your arrow. Now what happens next depends on where you placed the arrow? The funs over now the work begins, trailing your deer. These are some tips i use in trailing deer.


The heart shot

5The deer may leap and kick when hit in this spot; also you may not see blood until the first 15-25 yards. The deer may crash, with a complete arrow pass through, at about 80-100 yards. The deer may also go about 400 yards depending on how much damage have been done to the heart. Remember one thing; give the deer plenty of time before you trail it.


The lung shot

6When a deer is hit in the lungs ,it will most of the time, run hard and in a straight line, it will suddenly start slowing down, if both lungs are damaged . If your shot is higher up on the lungs the further a deer will go because less damage may have been done. As far as a blood trail, watch for blood spray and drops on plants and trees about knee high off the ground, also continue to keep an eye on the ground. If the deer is hit high blood sign may slow down or even stop. Also remember a deer can go a long way on one lung.


The kidney and liver shot

1With a kidney shot a deer will take a few jumps and walk away. They will bleed quite a bit and if not chase may fall between 75-100 yards.

With a liver shot this deer will die but it will bleed internally do not push this deer instead watch it close but keep a distance it may take a while to die depending on the damage inside.




The spine shot 

3The spine shot, this is a good shot placement, for stand hunters .The deer will drop were it stands .But if it is hit to far right or left one can miss the nerve bundle that when severed drops the deer .Also if shooting from the ground and the deer gets hit to high it won’t kill the deer it will eventually stop bleeding and a lot of times heal up.



The belly shot

2If your deer is shot in the belly, do not trail right away .A belly shot deer may just walk away or jump and trot away. A deer hit in the belly will hunch its back and will lie down if left alone. Wait several hours before trailing deer and look for dark blood bits of food and plant matter. I cannot stress do not push a belly shot deer you will only lose it



Hind leg shot

This deer will more than likely live unless the main artery is cut and the deer bleeds out.


Watch the blood sign.


Know the deer’s internal structure

4The key is practice good shot placement, and always pay close attention to the arrow. Did it pass through? Or did it stop? Maybe it broke or fell out, also keep close watch on the arrow. Knowing the vitals is one of the most important things to know when placing the arrow in the right spot.




A correctly place lung shot won’t go 500 yards and up hills as i have been told before by people. Or I spine shot a deer and it ran off. Pay close attention, because it may mean finding that big one or not.


Well till next month get back to nature

October content

Chronic Wasting Disease


Well it’s that time again, Deer season. Here in Missouri we are also dealing with some important issues. One thing that is very important to us here as deer processors, is Chronic Wasting Disease or CWD

- What is CWD?
CWD is a TSE (Transmissible, Spongiform, and Encephalopathy)

Which is a prion protein, a normal prion in the brain resembles a licorice twist, but the culprit CWD prion resembles a straight ribbon, and just like a bad habit this prion disrupts the normal twist in healthy prions, causing them to unravel, and causing a chain reaction, until the brain resembles a sponge. In the deer this may take up to 16 months, and results are always fatal.


- Where is CWD found and how is it spread?

It is believed that CWD can be found in soil, and that it can travel through feces, saliva and urine, and is transported from animal to animal contact.


- What are the symptoms and signs of infection?

Weight loss, excessive drinking, lowering of head, drooling and grinding of teeth.




- Where might CWD be found on the deer ?

All brain matter, spinal cord, and glands


- Is there any evidence that CWD can infect people ?

CWD is not viewed as a human health issue.


- Why the concern?

If nothing is done and CWD was not taken seriously, it could reduce the Missouri deer herd to the point that deer would have to be reintroduced to Missouri again. As of right now there is no cure, and no animal is able to show a resistance against CWD. In a sense it could wipe out Missouri Whitetail deer completely.


- What are we doing to prevent CWD contamination?

We bone all meat .Boning is a recommended procedure to prevent the spread of CWD. We process your deer one at a time to prevent contamination. We handle your deer with gloves, use different knives and tools for the different procedures to prevent contamination.

We will not process or accept a deer or elk with spine and head attached from anywhere but Missouri. There are no exceptions.


Until next time get back to nature

November Content 


Deer Droppings


Milk duds in the woods, raisinets or whatever you want to call them there still deer scat or deer feces, little round bullet shaped deer poop. 



As you see from the above picture deer vs. rabbit scat. Deer droppings will be in a large cluster with 30-94 pellets in it .Rabbit will have a whole lot less pellets and a smaller cluster. Deer pellets are bullet shaped, rounded, and almost flat on one end, with a point on the other. Rabbit droppings are round like a marble.


Ok let’s start tracking .>>>>>

Round single pellets mean that deer have been feeding on leaves, twigs, acorns ,dried alfalfa . Mostly this is from foods with little moisture. And is seen alot more, deeper into the winter season.


Lumpy bunched pellets, mean deer have been eating grasses, clover, apples, forbs, plant matter with a lot of water content. We also need to remember that as deer leave there bedding area, after chewing there cud, that you will sometimes find clumped droppings. It has been suggested that a deer will drop clumps first thing after leaving there bedding area, and the rest of the day it will become loose pellets.


Pellet piles may measure 5-6"in diameter depending on the size of the deer.


Deer will leave about 13 piles of droppings in about 24 hours.


Bucks and Does produce the same amount of pellets, it is true a larger deer produces larger pellets. I’m not sure how accurate droppings are to identify


Bucks and Does. Some think that Bucks produce larger clumps than Does, but we have to be careful with this idea, because we have processed Does up to 170-180lbs, a lot of Bucks reach this weight .So if the two are field dressed at equal weight, there would be no difference in colon size. Because they are of the same design. Yes there are individual differences in each deer, but from male to female, it’s still the same pellet size production .The colon is what forms the pellets one at a time, and the rectum clumps the pellets together.


When droppings are fresh they have a gloss to them, this usually means they are less than 10-12 hours old.

Fresh the color is usually brown or black turning lighter in color as it ages.

It will be green and wet when eating green plants.




As far as deer droppings effects on human and other animals, we need to be careful with handling them.

IT is guessed that 17%of the whitetail population harbors human infectious E coli bacteria. The bacteria lives in the intestine of deer, elk, cows, sheep and goats, and if shot in the belly, the E coli can spread to the meat.

Deer feces and intestines can carry human infectious type E coli and other Vero toxigenic E coli. Dogs eat deer feces, It is thought that they do this for nutrients, enzymes, bacteria, that aids in digestion.

We need to just keep one thing in mind good shot placement and proper field dressing could help prevent the spread of E coli to our families and friends .


Well till next time, Get back to nature

December Content 

Odd Whitetail antler growth

This month Im going to leave you with pictures of wild and weird antler growth formations.   


Untill next time get back to nature




Damaged meat

Why does it seem I’m not getting all my meat back?

Well let me start by saying we process every deer individually and there is no chance you are not getting your deer back.

What happens a lot of times is people don't understand bullet ballistics.


When a bullet hits bone it rips and shatters that bone ,causing not only bone, but bullet fragments to damage muscle tissue .People don't understand that yes we could cut up that muscle and send it to them to eat ,but we do not want to chance injury or sickness on any one.

The classic shoulder shot it takes down the deer, but it renders a lot of damaged meat, as the bullet fragments, when it hits the bone. This shot is fine if the shooter understands it causes a lot of damage to the shoulder.




The best shot is further behind the shoulder it does less damage to the shoulders. Like i said both shots are fine, people need to understand that some meat will be lost with the shoulder blade shot.





 Here is a chart of the muscles of a deer. Lead toxicity is another concern in processing deer, yes i have heard it ( well my grandpa and dad never worried about lead toxicity). True but with everything that we know about it right now, why would we want to feed it to our families and kids? We at Jerry and Tammy's do what we can to make your order as safe as possible; this is why there is less meat. We cut out damaged areas with fragments and discard them .But mostly it is up to the shooter to make the right decision, and right size bullet.



The larger the bullet the more damage. As you can see from the X-ray, bullet fragments can end up just about any were, and most of the damaged area is removed and salvaged as best as we can.






Field dressing this is the second most damaging process that we see, most people hit the stomach, and cut up the hams as they remove the rectum, causing bacteria and stomach content to run into the knife cuts, which causes bad taste and may cause a quicker decomposition ,interior muscles are basically sterile. So it is important to take your time when field dressing .We cut away damaged areas which result in meat loss to prevent bad taste. We understand people’s concerns and past experiences but we want to assure you we try our best to make your deer processing experience with us a good one .


As far as archery we will also clean around wound because of a broken arrow we have found carbon fibers 10"away from the entry wound. We have also found broad heads in muscle tissue, broken when they hit bones. If i can’t piece it back together, I cut it out.


I hope this sheds some light on this question. We want the best experience for everyone and want to provide the best service to our customers there is a lot of discard on deer such as hide, bones, head, antlers, hooves, and shot damaged area, all which is left is the boneless cuts.

Well till next time get back to nature