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Thread: Legal moose, yes or no?

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    Default Legal moose, yes or no?

    Saturday night I came upon two bulls while out hunting. One looked like a large calf, while the other one was quite a bit larger. These two bulls were not together, yet they both sported the same type of antler setup, or lack thereof. Each moose had a "knob" or a large bump, roughly about 2-3 inches long in velvet, and that was it. Would these two guys fall under the spike-fork or no?

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    Moderator AKmud's Avatar
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    Default Legal

    Should be. There is no real length requirement for a spike. It has to be longer than it is wide and over 1" long to be considered a point. The way you describe it "2-3 inches long" I think it would be legal.
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    Moderator Daveinthebush's Avatar
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    Default Nope

    Not legal in my book. It is probably this years moose and just has larger than normal first year growth.

    http://www.wildlife.alaska.gov/regul...fs/mooseid.pdf

    The 1" by 1" reference is for browtine points. IT has to project from the antler.

    There are some gray areas in the F&D definiation of legal. A fellow over here last year shot a spike/fork and it took 4-5 calls from our enforcement officer to find out if it was legal. In the end, the hunter was allowed to keep the meat but the antlers were turned over as demonstration samples.

    I could be wrong............... but let it grow a year.

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    Default

    This is why I passed on these two moose, just because I wasn't sure. I watched them both for quite some time in my 10x40 Zeiss Classic binoculars, so I had plenty of clarity at what I was looking at. I've had similiar responses from other people that I've talked to about this, with some saying yes and others saying no.

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    Moderator AKmud's Avatar
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    Default case law....

    My brother in law had his bull seized by F&G for this same argument. He shot a small bull with about 2" of antler growth. Someone called F&G on him and they flew a helicopter to his kill site and took his bull and cited him for an illegal animal. He fought F&G in court and it was determined that his small bull was legal and he had what was left of the meat (and antlers) returned to him.

    I wouldn't have any problem taking a 3-4" spiked animal.
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    The porcupine is a peacful animal yet God still thought it necessary to give him quills....

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    webmaster Michael Strahan's Avatar
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    Default Illegal Bull

    Moose like this are described in the ADFG video, "Is This Moose Legal?". You can purchase the video either in VHS or DVD from ADFG here in Anchorage. These are bull calves, and what you're seeing is the pedicel, or the base of what will be an antler next year. These are the sort of bulls ADFG is trying to protect with the spike-fork 50" regulation.

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    Member AK DUCKMAN's Avatar
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    Default

    What did I tell you when you called me. What you diden't belive me. I'm just glad you diden't shoot.

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    Smile ID of a point

    Quote Originally Posted by Daveinthebush View Post
    Not legal in my book. It is probably this years moose and just has larger than normal first year growth.

    http://www.wildlife.alaska.gov/regul...fs/mooseid.pdf

    The 1" by 1" reference is for browtine points. IT has to project from the antler.

    There are some gray areas in the F&D definiation of legal. A fellow over here last year shot a spike/fork and it took 4-5 calls from our enforcement officer to find out if it was legal. In the end, the hunter was allowed to keep the meat but the antlers were turned over as demonstration samples.

    I could be wrong............... but let it grow a year.
    Daveinthebush- I am not disputing the spike/fork being shot and multiple calls being made. That happens. My question is about the 1" X 1" reference that you made. A point or tine is a projection of at least 1" long and is longer than it is wide when measured from the tip. I cannot see anything anywhere indicating that's it just for browtines as you mentioned. A point is a point (by definition) regardless of antler configuration or where that point is on the head. Please correct me if I'm wrong.

    Matt-The bulls that you stated before are (IMO) illegal. The littlest bull could fall under the first year calf bull requirement, regardless on what's on his head, he would be illegal if he were a calf. OR if he's a genetically defunct year old or 2yo, his antlers are still illegal by definition. They're wider than they are long when measured from the tip, and that's illegal. The same goes for the bigger of the 2. You did the right thing by not shooting.

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    Default good job

    I really don't know if they were legal. I just want to applaud you for not shooting when in doubt. If more hunters followed this ethic, we'd have a lot more legal game to shoot at. Especially sheep. I've worked in taxidermy and sporting goods for many years (not any more) and have heard a lot of 'it was so close I had to' stories. Really bums me out. If EVERYONE followed the rules, and like you, didn't shoot unless they were sure it was legal, there would be a lot more truly legal critters out there. Thanks for doing the right thing, and do your best to instill these ethics in others.

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    Moderator Daveinthebush's Avatar
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    Default

    If the projection is on the brow palm it is a tine.

    If the projection is on the main palm, it is a point.

    The 1" description from F&G is a projection from the antler in whole, not the skull of the animal and describes points and tine length.

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    Moderator AKmud's Avatar
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    Default the rest of the story...

    You also have to look at the rest of the description. The immature calves are described in the regs as having "skin and hair" over this bump. The bulls in question were described as being in "velvet" which is a different story.

    You absolutely did the right thing by not shooting if you were in question. Too bad you didn't get a photo. Trying to figure out if an animal is legal by a few descriptive words is nearly impossible if the animal is marginal.
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    The porcupine is a peacful animal yet God still thought it necessary to give him quills....

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    Member akprideinvegas's Avatar
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    Default

    no i talked to fish and game because i saw a yearling with 2 inch nobs out of his head with full velvet and how he explained it was that if there is antler with no velvet it is legal. so i believe the smallest forks will be 4 inches or so.. so the knobs will not be legal. also first year moose are not legal in spike/fork/50" areas.

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    Default Another dead give away

    Is most of the time those same bulls will have a greyish looking shouldar patch. That is definately a young yearling.

    I wont say always but it is something to look for.

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    Smile tines and points

    Quote Originally Posted by Daveinthebush View Post
    If the projection is on the brow palm it is a tine.

    If the projection is on the main palm, it is a point.

    The 1" description from F&G is a projection from the antler in whole, not the skull of the animal and describes points and tine length.
    I'm sorry man, I still disagree. Let me explain myself. (Pg 30 of the reg's) "In the Identifying a point OR tine": A point OR tine (meaning one OR the other) is an antler projection (from the palm OR brow) at least one inch long, and longer than it is wide, with the width measured one inch or more from the tip. If tine and point were different, then there would be two (2) definitions and they wouldn't have "OR" seperating point/tine. But there isn't. They are one in the same. If a 60" bull has 15 points on one side and 16 on the other, were the brow tines counted? You bet your ***** they were. Catch my drift? Here's another one. Check out pg 30 of the reg's. Look at the single antler at the bottom left side of the page. That antler is broken down into categories. Now read the definition block to the right of that antler. The last sentence says that " a TINE originating in or AFTER this bay is not a brow tine". If it's not a brow tine, then what is it? It's an antler tine OR point. The yellow box also on pg 30 states "counting main palm points". There's 2 paragraphs on the same page of the reg's saying palms can have tines OR points. See where I'm going with this? I believe (IMHO) that it is a slang term that got published in the reg's and it confuses people. (Not like most folks don't need a lawyer to cypher some of that stuff) Anyways, please correct/enlighten/educate me if I'm all disconboobliated on this!!! RESPECTFULLY SUBMITTED!!!!!!!!

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    Red face correction

    I stand corrected. I've been brought up to speed. A brow projection IS a tine. A palm projection IS a point. BUT- the browtine tip is called a "browtine point". I either misread Dave or read it right and didn't understand. Sorry for adding anymore confusion.

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    Default

    I'm with Strahan. Doesn't sounds like a legal bull. You know a spike when you see one, it's typically as long or longer than the ear during it's second year.

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    Member Jktimm's Avatar
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    Default I can't stand it....

    I have to weigh in on this one... The moose in question had an antler that was 2-3" long in August.

    Page 31 of the regs identifies the protected calves as:

    By November, some male calves have a small amount of antler growth (1-2 inches) covered with hair and skin. These are still calves and are not legal in a spike-fork hunt.

    This moose was legal, and by November the spikes you saw would have grown to what, 6" long? By the way, I really applaud you for passing them up when you didn't feel right about it.

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    Member AK DUCKMAN's Avatar
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    Default

    Jktimm
    I don't think so, Antlers stop growing when the velvet come off, Or just before. And seeing that the time is upon us now and not in nov.. Unless he goes out and sees the same bulls with clean antlers. And I don't think they will be. Like Burton said A spike or fork will be longer then the ears.
    I have never heard of any that were. How about anyone else. Also the season is closed in nov..

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    Post First hand account

    Everyone has done a great job of walking the regulation around in this thread so I won't, but I will tell you a first hand account of a similar situation and what the Biologist and the troopers had to say.

    Short story. Scraping from a stand. Young bull came to the call aggressively. Definitely a 1-1/2 yr. old moose but horns barely the size of my thumbs. (point or tine, not going into that argument) Visible, longer than wide, NOT A CALF. Bull approached to within 25yrds. Placed 1 375 H&H bullet in its forehead. Meat for the winter.
    On the way home, got pulled over for tail light out on trailer. Tiny horns, skull plate shattered, Only little horns remaining on skull fragments, Trooper took horns. Horns were returned to me later.

    WHAT I FOUND OUT!
    First off I want to point out that I did NOT have a doubt about if it was legal. If I did have any doubts I WOULD NOT HAVE SHOT.
    Talking with the local biologist (great guy, but I wont name names on here) He said that I did indeed understand the "intent" of the law correctly. A 1-1/2 yr old moose with such small horns is what the spike/ fork regs are trying to make available for harvest. IF- it were a calf that already had horn projections it would probably be bigger than a fork the next year and thus a bull they were trying NOT to shoot. (Calves do not qualify as spikes, we all understand that) So as far as the biologist cared- Good Job, meat in the freezer.

    BUT< BUT< BUT
    That is the "INTENT" of law. But if the troopers donít measure the horns the same way you do, or donít agree, or blah, blah blah, You might find yourself in court telling the judge why you think you should get your horns back.

    In my situation: the trooper had no idea about moose, had not shot a moose before, etc. But after having other troopers look at the horns to verify their legal status they were returned.

    I wasnít there to look at these moose so I CANT say if they were legal, I am not even going to guess. BUT KUDOS FOR NOT SHOOTING WITH OUT BEING 100%

    Best of the outdoors!!!!

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