The archery buck-hunting season for Josh Kenney, 35, of Lehigh Township is over. On Saturday, Oct. 24 at 8:30 a.m., Keeney had an extremely robust 8-point buck walk 28 yards in front of his treestand. While an 8-pointer is fairly common for many area deer hunters, Keeney, a former Illinois deer hunting guide who only shoots 3-year old, 120-130 size bucks, felt this one was a keeper and, unbeknown to him, had a story behind it.
When interviewed, Keeney said he never saw this buck before the season and admits he uses trail cams on the Nazareth area property he hunts. Plus, he inventories his deer keeping meticulous records and photos.
When asked if this buck was chasing doe’s indicating the rut is on, Keeney said, “His neck was big, his glands were up to high heaven and he had his nose to the ground. He definitely was in rut.”
Ironically, his avid deer hunting buddy, who was also an Illinois hunting guide and hunts a mile up the road from his site, said he’s 99 percent sure he had this same buck on one of his camera’s in 2012 as a two-year old. “The difference, opines Keeney, is that the antlers looked identical only thinner and smaller when I showed him the pictures of this buck. And he saves all his pictures over the last 15 years.”
This isn’t the largest buck he ever shot, and his last bow buck was taken in 2010. But this was the biggest bow buck he ever shot, estimating its live weight at about 220 pounds. Earlier in the season he passed up a couple 120-125 class bucks that his buddy said he might be sorry he didn’t take one.
On this buck, Keeney felt he had a liver shot and didn’t want to push him so he waited eight hours before searching for him. It rained that night so the buck’s blood trail was washed away recounts Keeney.
The next day after looking long and hard, he found his buck about 100 yards from his treestand in tall grass where it bedded down. However, when he found it his heart sunk.
“When we came upon it on Sunday morning, I was sick because coyotes tore it apart after it expired. And I heard them howling the evening before.”
Keeney used a Hoyt Carbon Spyder compound bow and a Rage 100-grain broadhead to take this hefty buck. He subsequently took it to Bob’s Taxidermy in Orefield to have a shoulder mount made.
According to Danenhower, the buck rough (green) scored 144 gross points, had a 21-inch outside spread and 5-inch circumference bases. “Looking at its teeth, it appears it was a five-year old deer,” said Danenhower in a phone interview.
SB 737 MAY ALLOW SEMI-AUTO RIFLES IN PA
Last week, the House Game and Fisheries Committee reported Senate Bill 737 came out as amended by a vote of 25-2 and it will allow Pennsylvania hunters to use semi-automatic rifles for hunting. The Bill will now go to the House of Representatives for consideration.
SB 737 as amended, would eliminate the prohibition on semi-auto rifles for hunting and would allow the game commission to regulate these sporting rifles for all game species.
The use of semi-auto shotguns has been legal for decades in Pennsylvania, but this bill would end the prohibition for semi-auto rifles. Hunters then would be able have the same opportunities and options as those in other states, says the PGC in a press release.