Old Black Buck Down

Discussion in 'Antelope Hunting' started by Tyler Kee, Nov 6, 2018.

  1. Tyler Kee

    Tyler Kee Active Member

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    Sep 17, 2018
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    Little bit of backstory - I hunt a piece of family land in central Texas, a few hours west of Austin. For most of my life, our ranch has only had whitetail, whitetail, whitetail, and the very occasional Axis. About 5-6 years ago, we got some Black Buck. Two bucks and two does. I have no idea where they came from, but one day, we had four antelope. And what a sight to behold!

    About 4 years ago, the herd had gotten to the size that we could start culling the herd a bit. The original two bucks were aging out and starting to look a bit broken down. New bucks had come up, including this guy. So I took to the field and had him in my sights. Beautiful 3 curl buck but he was chasing does and it was about the most perfect day I ever spent in the field and I let him walk. It felt "easy" and he was just such a magnificent creature. It felt way too much like cheating.

    The next year, I just flat out couldn't find him.

    Two years ago, I chased him all over this big field we have - I must have walked 4 or 5 miles on a 180 acre piece of land and he was just not having it.

    Last year, I saw that his horn had broken off. The only time he'd sit still? Between me and a very expensive bulldozer. Couldn't take the shot.

    This year, I went out the day before the whitetail opener and chased him all over like I did in 2016. We just couldn't get closer than about 400 yards and that wasn't a shot I felt comfortable taking.

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    Opening morning saw me sitting in the bow blind my hunting partner uses armed with a 30-30 I bought from my aunt after my uncle passed. He'd purchased it prior to ALS robbing him of his body. He ran about 10 rounds of ammo through it, and to my knowledge never actually killed anything on their land. I'd futzed around with it over the years and put together a decent little load using Barnes 150 gr TSX
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    Mean little turd of a bullet.

    So there I'm sitting about 20 yards from the feeder, watching all manner of young does fight each other over ample acorns and corn. None of them are shooters and the spikes I'd hoped for were just not showing up. Movement caught my eye to the left and wouldn't you know it? A herd of Black Buck does trailed by an absolute stud of a buck and the old man I'd been all these years.

    I checked in the binos to make sure it was really him and got situated using my tripod and Reaper Rest. Overkill? Probably. But did you see that my rifle wears iron sights with a big fat fiber optic front sight?

    He was tucked back under some trees and it was overcast so all I could make out was the white of his belly against the vertical black line of his legs. I checked again with the binos to make sure I had the proper reference points, settled the front pin, let out my breath, and let it fly. I was back on target in time to watch him rear up on his hind legs and come crashing down. GPS confirmed my shot at 103 yards. A total chip shot with anything else in my safe but a bit more difficult with irons. IMG_9998.jpeg IMG_9999.HEIC-1.jpeg
    I dropped him off at the taxidermist yesterday for a Euro mount with the very firm instructions that I don't want him "fixed up" at all. I want him on the wall just like he died.
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    I was very pleased with the TSX's performance. It punched through both shoulder blades and made an unholy mess of his lungs. It was just a big pool of blood, lung pieces, and a heart when I opened him up. He did a true bang/flop and died exactly where he was standing. No running, no tracking, no drama.

    Once I got him skinned out, I got to see evidence of a life hard lived. He was absolutely riddled with old cactus spines in his hide and even in his flesh. But even though he was old, the tenderloins and backstraps were still more tender feeling and delicate than some of the young whitetail I've taken. I'm excited to spend the next few months in the kitchen.

    Red wine and garlic braised shanks are going to make an appearance at Thanksgiving this year. I'll be using some stock I made in the pressure cooker on Sunday morning.

    I've been fortunate to take a lot of animals over the years, but this one feels the most special. This old man and I tangled for many years and I feel like waiting for the right shot was the right decision. My uncle's rifle finally has a confirmed kill and there's meat in the freezer.
     
    slas, Capt RB, Peddler 76 and 6 others like this.
  2. CaptnC

    CaptnC Well-Known Member

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    Jun 21, 2017
    Cool story.

    I would have shoulder mounted that guy. I've killed a bunch of Black Buck and I know it's very hard to have one sold black like he was!

    Taxidermist most likely pay good money for that cape!

    I could never get the meat to last longer than a couple meals...that stuff is good!
     
  3. dok7mm

    dok7mm Well-Known Member

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    I've taken quite a few blackbuck and they are Delicious. Seems they never stop moving.

    That's a true old warhorse, you should be very happy that he showed up.
     
  4. Country Bumpkin

    Country Bumpkin Well-Known Member

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    Sep 22, 2015
    This is a great story. Thanks for sharing. I really like your appreciation for the meat as well
     
  5. Classic12

    Classic12 Well-Known Member

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    Jun 23, 2018
    Happy ending this is a very nice story I'm happy to have read it. congratulations.