How old was this Ohio doe?

By Grant Woods,

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← Grant's AnswersDeer Biology
Hey Grant! Really enjoy everything you do and are a great role model for young men and women interested in Natural Resources like myself.

Recently Grant was Ohio’s gun season and while aging deer for Division of Wildlife surveys a doe was checked it and whenever I opened her mouth I couldn’t believe how old she was (guessing her at 7.5). With division of wildlife we age .5- 4.5. Once we determine a deer is over 4.5 we call it 4.5+. But I’m really curious to see what you think of her age. I was fortunate that the guy who killed the deer didn’t want the jawbones and gave me permission to take them. Now I know its difficult once a deer reaches a certain age and also i know every deer is unique and may age different than others. Regardless Id like to have a more professional observation because I have only been surveying deer for 3 years.

Thank You,


Thanks for sharing the kind words!  

Those are nice quality pictures!  As you know, estimating a deer’s age using the wear and replacement technique isn’t 100% accurate.  It appears this deer had an abscess that may have caused an different rate of wear than normal.  Taking that into consideration, I estimate this deer was at least 5.5 years old and maybe older.

Enjoy creation,


December 21, 2015