The Tennessean recently reported what was suspected but not yet certain: Stephen Tucker’s 47-point trophy whitetail was in fact a world-record buck. Tucker, a 27-year-old farmer and avid deer hunter from Gallatin, Tennessee, shot the deer with a muzzleloader in November.
Before the animal’s score could be determined, the rack needed to dry out for 60 days. That period, which allows for possible antler shrinkage, ended earlier this month. Next, a Boone-and-Crockett panel of four judges scored the deer at 312 and 3⁄8 inches.
So now it’s official. All that’s left is the certification, which won’t take place until the Boone and Crockett awards banquet in 2019.
The Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency (TWRA) also declared Tucker’s deer a new state record, beating the record set in 2000 by Dave Wachtel whose deer netted 244 and 3/8 inches.
Behind The Scenes: Measuring The Rack
Deer racks are measured from several angles at the farthest points using the official Boone and Crockett scoring method. A non-typical rack is asymmetrical and without the same number of points on each side like a typical rack.
The measurement took place at the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency where Tucker was allowed to watch. The entire process took nearly four hours to complete.
TWRA District 21 captain Dale Grandstaff, who was a part of the Boone and Crockett official judging panel, said he never expected to measure a rack as large as Tucker’s deer.
“I never thought I would ever see this in Tennessee,” Grandstaff told The Tennessean. “Actually, I never thought I would see one over 300 inches.”
Tucker’s deer, weighing in around 150 pounds and estimated to be 3½ years old, was shot from about 40 yards away on a farm his family leases. While Tucker said he hasn’t decided what he’ll do with the antlers — which could be worth more than $100,000 — he did have the meat processed and plans to eat it.
What are your thoughts on this new world record? Did you ever expect the world record non-typical would come from the South? Let us know in the comment section below. Also, check out this video where TWRA Director Ed Carter sits down with Tucker to reflect on this historic moment of Tennessee hunting history.