How to Score Deer Antlers

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Many hunters always scavenge through the forests to shoot bucks with the biggest antlers. It’s for the stature of holding a record but more because the records go down in a history book. After shooting that buck, you’ll probably take a picture or two to savor the memories. You’ll also want to keep a record of the antler that you have maxed, especially if you’re a competitor. So, do you know how to score deer antlers? 

Scoring Deer Antlers

The procedure of measuring a deer antler is not that complicated. All you need to have is a measuring steel tape and string that is preferably flexible and an adjustable measuring ruler. The reason for the flexible tape is that deer antlers are measured using an eighth of an inch. Also, the B & C Club measuring system has a preference for more symmetrical or typical antler racks. It’s easier to score these, but also there is a ranking system for non-symmetrical or non-typical points.

Recording the Score

The record books on scores have a special register for non-typical antlers. If the non-symmetrical antler scores a seven-point, the recording will be registered as a four-point by three-point antler. But, there are cases of antlers being typical then having a few non-typical points. If the non-typical points are small and haven’t reached the recommended scoring length, they are not measured. Only the typical antler racks and points are measured.

Let’s get down to the system of scoring deer antlers, and you’ll see how easy it can be.

Procedure on How to Measure Deer Antlers

Step1. Dry the Antler

Before starting the scoring process, you should first dry the deer antler. There is a difference in measurement when you score a fresh and dry antler. For fresh antlers, the overall circumferences tend to be more significant compared to dry antlers. When drying, a few inches are bound to be lost because they’re permeable and no longer receiving foot nutrients.

Also, the B & C recommends that the fresh antler should air-dry for not less than 60 days. These are two months, and it’s an official requirement from the firm.

Step2. Download the antler Score Chart form the B&C website

On the website, you will find score charts for different types of deer. Therefore, it’s vital to know the exact kind of deer antler you want to measure. There are instructions on each score chart, which will entail the method for scoring the antler. All this is to ensure the standard system of measurement isn’t compromised.

Step3. Count the Abnormal Points and All the Points On The antler

You will first need to fill in how many unsymmetrical points are on both beams of the antler. Then count all the points and record them according to how many points each rack has.

Step4. Score the Dimension of the Top Tips

First, measure the length between the two top tips using the steel tape and don’t measure them from the back of the points. This can make your score chart ineligible since rules dictate to measure the tip to tip length from the front. Record the measurement in the correct box.

Step5. Measure the Furthest Parts of the Main Beam

You’ll need to find the furthest parts between the two main racks and use your tape to take the measurement. It’s not necessarily limited to the top or lower parts as long as it’s the furthest point.

Step6. Find the Inside spread of the Main Racks

Measuring this will require you to use the adjustable measuring ruler, its best recommended for its accuracy. Measure the part with the most extensive curve between the primary beams from the inside.

Step7. Measure the Length of the Beams

Either the flexible tape or a steel measuring string is most suitable for measuring this. Start from the part where the skull and the beam meet, the tip of the burr. Then, measure from the outside to the top of the beam. Repeat this to another rack depending on whether you started with the right or the left beam. Record each measurement in its box on the chart.

Step8. Start Measuring the Antler Spikes

You have to distinguish between the even and uneven points first. Measure the symmetrical points of the right beam starting from the base near the blur. It’s vital to find a center point on the main rack to place your tape when measuring the points. Do this for the left beam and record all the measurements. The score chat will have seven boxes, but you should fill them depending on the antler’s points.

Now measure the abnormal points from the right and left antlers and add them together. The less unsymmetrical spikes on a deer antler, the higher score it will gain using the Boone and Crockett system.

Step9. Circumference Measurement

When measuring the circumference, you’re required to measure the parts between the points on each beam. These should be the thinnest parts and are the measurements required; hence you should keep this in mind. To find the narrowest point, slide your flexible tape up and down until you find the exact part. First, measure between the blurr and the first point, then the first point and second point, and so forth.

You can choose to start with either beam but record the dimensions of the circumferences for both beams on the relevant boxes.

Step10. Do the Calculations

You will add the tip to tip figures with the inside spread then deduct the abnormal points total acquired before. There could be a difference, but sometimes the beams may cancel each other. But, the smaller the difference in the net score, then the higher the total scores.

Step11. Submit Your Net Score to Boone and Crockett

After getting your total score, submit your form either online or physically, and then wait for the result.

How are Deer Antlers Numbered?

The Boone and Crockett system uses the letter G to name the points on antler beams. You will find G1, G2, G3 depending on the number of points the antler has. To denote circumferences, use the letter H1, H2, H3 contingent to the beam’s circumference parts.

Do You Count Both Antlers on a Deer?

There are two methods of counting antlers on a deer, the official and unofficial way. The formal process recognized by the Boone and Crockett organization requires the counting of both antlers during measurement. Also, when counting the points, both racks have to be counted. The informal method will include two ways, the Eastern and Western.

Therefore, when using this method, you should realize that how you score a deer antler will depend on the State. The Eastern way when an antler has six points, it means each beam has three points. But when using the Western method, a buck antler with three points has three points on each antler. A deer antler with uneven points, let’s say seven, would be a seven-point antler in the Eastern States.

That can be one beam having four and the other three points. For the Western States, this would be named a four by three antler. Hence, it all depends on the method you choose to use when counting the antlers. And neither the official nor the informal process is illegal, and you can use your preference.

What do the points mean on deer antlers?

Deer antler points are the extension spikes or barbs that grow on the main beam. But not all barbs are points, you should know that because they can bring lots of confusion. When the barbs start growing, they are called tines. These have to grow to a particular length for them to be antler points.

The points are used as a reference during scoring and identifying the type of antler. For example, there is an eight-point buck or a nine-point buck.

How to Determine Points on a Buck

Deer antler points will vary depending on several factors. These dynamics will determine the length, number, and how even or uneven the points are. Here are factors that determine whether antler barbs are points.

The Length

To score a point, you should measure from the half spot where the beam and the point branch. If the spine is an inch long, then it qualifies to be referred to as a point.


The age of the deer antler will also determine the points. A newborn whitetail will start growing antlers after four months. In case the deer is hunted before its antlers mature, the points tend to be small. This leads to the ineligibility of the antler points.


Each State has a method of cataloging points across America. The standard size of the point may vary in some states, and this is due to the deer breed available. However, you should note that the formal method is standard across States. Therefore, when determining whether antler points deserve the reference, you should check the state rules governing antler scoring.

What is a Good Deer Score?

An outstanding deer score is one with the right size of the second point of an antler from the base. It’s the G2, and these happen to be longer than the normal antler points. On an excellent deer score, G2 must measure eight to nine inches. However, you will find some mature whitetails that have points measuring 12 inches.

What Score is Considered a Trophy Buck?

The score on a buck antler is measured in inches. Hence, the more the inches the antler has the likelihood for it being a trophy. For a score to be considered a trophy buck, it has to measure 160 inches and more. Some whitetail buck antlers can reach these, although some hunters will wish it to be 170. This would because one has already scored the 160 inches antler or more.

What is A Booner?

A Booner buck is a name used by many Boone and Crockett enthusiasts. These bucks have huge antlers, some measuring more than 170 inches, which are a record score. But for some, the measurements can exceed past the 170 inches, nevertheless they are usually the uneven type. Hunting a Booner buck is considered fortunate by many hunters since they are scarce. That doesn’t mean the Booners are not available, if you look in the right places, you can find them.

What Makes a Buck Boone and Crockett?

This is the score the antler has through the Boone and Crockett system. After measuring and forwarding the measurements, the count the antler gets is a significant determinant. So, for a buck to qualify for an entry in the B & C record, it has to be 160 inches. This is according to their standard measurement.

Most Popular Deer Hunting Accessories

Here is a list of necessary accessories you’ll need when taking down a deer for antlers.

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Final Verdict

Deer antler hunters are always looking to score a trophy buck. To do this, you should be able to undertake a scoring process that requires keenness and upright measuring ability. Hence, to score deer antlers, you need ample knowledge if you are going to do it right. If you miss a stage, it’s impossible for the B & C organization to enter your net score in the record book.

Remember to check out our Guides on caping deer and how to approach a downed deer.

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