This is the cleaned-up red deer skull that I found in Dougal's Cairn wood when I was walking with mum. It was partly buried in the ground, which is why it looked filthy and dirty when I first found it.
It took a long time to clean it but we did it the same way we cleaned my six-point red deer skull. We started by spraying it with water, then using biological washing powder, then baths of peroxide and bleach. Eventually, it was almost white, and we hung it on the shed with four other skulls for the sun to bleach it.
This stag's antlers are not the same size. This is because the right antler has got broken above the second tine. That probably happened when the antler was growing, and the deer was in velvet and the bone was soft.
The second tine on the left antler looks like it was damaged too. At the moment, this is my skull with the most points, and my favourite. But if it had grown properly, it would be a ten point skull !
I think this deer was quite old, maybe seven or eight. You can't really tell the age from the number of points, but the antler is much thicker than the antlers on my six point. The molars are still a bit sharp, though, so maybe it is younger.
I'd like to find more skulls like this, but it is difficult because poachers and gamekeepers normally keep any skulls with really good antlers. I think this one was shot by a gamekeeper, and he didn't keep the skull because of the broken antler.
The next big stag skull I'll clean up with probably be the fallow deer, but that won't be for a couple of months.
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