Sunday, September 23, 2012

Big Bull Stars of the 2012 Arkansas Elk Rut

It is time to start introducing of the big bulls of the 2012 elk rut. Below on the left is the Boxley Stud, an 8x8, and on the right, Prince, an 8x7 because of antler damage. Both are top rank bulls. 

The Boxley Stud was the premier bull in the valley in 2010, he returns after a one year absence with a much heavier rack, and at least one extra point. He also has a palmate feature (flat, palm-like) on his left antler. Palmate antlers occur primarily on older bulls. 

Prince (right) is bigger than last year, but still smaller than the Stud. Last year he was a nearly perfect typical atypical bull elk with symmetrical 8x8 antlers. This year due to damage during the velvet period, he is an 8x7 and not so perfect.

Both these bulls are trophy bull elk. Both have been photographed close to cow herds, but there are not quite enough cow elk in heat to bull them in just yet. That moment, the one that ignites Boxley Valley with bull fights will probably come in the next week. Experienced bull watchers can feel the tension building with more bugling, and more big bulls every day. 

These images are not very good because they are clips of a video taken this morning at about 250 yards. Both these bulls will be sought by photographers this year. My bet is that the Boxley Stud will be the dominant bull elk this year, but this is always uncertain. He may be the biggest bull elk in Arkansas at this time. 

Boxley Stud and Prince Bull Elk 2012
Boxley Stud and Prince Bull Elk 2012

Boxley Stud and Prince Bull Elk 2012 Compared
Boxley Stud and Prince -- 31 Total Points
Sparring in Boxley Valley 2012

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