Big Kansas Buck Has Third Antler in the Eye

The buck pictured here was harvested by Rex Covell of Shawnee, Kansas, during a Miami County archery hunt on October 23. The big whitetail buck, which actually has three antlers, has a drop-tine-like antler which passes through the head and drops out adjacent the buck’s left eye!

Covell said he is still on cloud nine.

“I had moved my Tri-Pod deer stand just a couple of days before, and I got in the stand about 4 in the afternoon. I was watching as other animals were around. A squirrel was near and I was watching it when I heard another noise. I looked around and this big buck had just jumped the fence and was coming right toward my stand.

It was all over in a matter of seconds. I didn’t really see the antler growing out by the eye, I just saw he was a big buck with a tremendous rack. I just had seconds to shoot. He was walking in when I let go.”

Whitetail Buck with Third Antler

Here’s how the hunt went down: It was about 6:30 p.m.

Covell said the big buck ran only 30 to 40-yards before dropping dead. He was using a PSE bow, with a Goldtip shaft tipped with an After-Shock point.

He was amazed when he saw the antler sticking out from below the buck’s eye. “I thought at first he had been in a fight and the other buck’s antler had embedded and broke off,” he said. It was a while before he learned it was an abnormal antler growth giving the buck three antlers.

Big Buck with Antler in Eye

He called his friend Clarence Cooper of Paola to give him a hand. He also got in touch with Jeff Fraka, official Pope & Young scorer of white-tailed deer antlers. He was trying to explain to Fraka about the extra antler and Fraka broke in with:

“I know just what you are talking about. I’ve got a picture of him!”

Naturally Covell couldn’t believe it, but when Fraka e-mailed him a picture he had gotten on his Cuddeback trail camera in 2006, he believed.

“I would think it was the same deer,” Covell said. “The one Fraka had a picture of had a growth of some kind in the same area as the one I took.”

Buck with Antler in Face

“I have a mineral lick the deer visited for four years before relocating to where Rex took him,” Fraka said. “I really believe the minerals help all deer in developing larger antlers. I can’t explain this abnormal antler from below the eye, though.”

A third antler may be scored, Fraka said, it’s just put in the abnormal (scoring) column.

“I was really wanting to have a whack at him,” Fraka said, “but I never saw the deer where he hung out for four years from my tree stand. I had at least 75 pictures of him in different stages. He green-scored at 192 4/8 inches non-typical.

Big Whitetail Buck with Extra Antler

I’m 90 percent sure this is a deer that was known to me as Boneface. He had disappeared from where I had a few Cuddeback pictures of him last year in velvet in August. He was not quite finished growing in the velvet photos. If this isn’t him we sure have some freak nasty genetics running rampant here in Miami County, Kansas.”

“Rex is very fortunate and a very serious deer hunter,” Fraka added. “I know a lot of people doubt it is true. I guess they are just the negative type.”

“By far it’s my biggest one ever,” Covell said. “I guess he would have weighed between 250 and 300 pounds.”

Of course he is having the head mounted. It will be available for display when the mounting is completed.

35 Replies to “Big Kansas Buck Has Third Antler in the Eye”

  1. Thats the craziest thing ive seen on whitetail for sure! It would be awsome if you could get that trail camera photo up there!

  2. It seems like the “growth” of the third antler is backwards and that it has a “base root” at the end that is sticking out. My guess is its some other buck’s horn that got launched in to this poor deer’s eye socket. Amazingly, this buck managed to heal and survive. Well, for a while.

  3. I agree with this statement –

    “It seems like the “growth” of the third antler is backwards and that it has a “base root” at the end that is sticking out. My guess is its some other buck’s horn that got launched in to this poor deer’s eye socket. Amazingly, this buck managed to heal and survive. Well, for a while.”

    Until it has had an autopsy/examination of the skull, inside, and out, I won’t believe otherwise.

  4. That is a cool buck either way, but I could believe it. The reason I found this post is I have a heavy 14 point buck that has 2 additional points that grow right off the bone, above his eye. I googled it to see if I could find any other whitetail bucks like this. My buck’s eyelid goes up and around the point, causing him not to be able to close his eye.

  5. I can believe it! I have seen an albino with the “third antler syndrome” here in MI. Never one comming from the eye though!

  6. I’ve never ever seen “third antler syndrome” on a buck before, but it’s a nice deer.

  7. Awesome buck ! I shot one this year with the same thing an antler growing from the corner of the eye. The antler though was not even close to that size, but still in all the biggest buck i’ve harvested. He was a ten point. Words just are never enough when you are able to harvest a mature buck, no matter what’s funky or not. The story that’s hopefully passed along with it is all that matters.

  8. I’m confused about this deer losing their antlers every year business which I know is true but there are things about it I don’t understand. And now looking at this buck I’m thinking how would that work out? He loses his antlers every year, including his third eye antler? Or probably not? First photos of this deer were in 2006 and that antler has been there for how many years? Did it grow larger? Did it have velvet?

    BTW, I just got my biggest buck ever on 11/15/2010 in southern Indiana. The deer field dressed 235 pounds so I’m thinking he was 270 pounds on the hoof. He has a non-typical 10 point rack. Neck was 23″, tarsal glands nearly black. I was going to examine his teeth to help get an idea of his age, but just dropped him off at the taxidermist.

  9. That is definitely an antler from another deer. You can see the root base were it was attached to the other deers skull at the end of the antler. Just looking at it you can see that it’s another deers antler.

  10. That is crazy! If it were another buck’s antler then the one coming out of its eye would have a burr like you commonly see around the base of a buck’s antler. This has no burr, so it is most definitely a strange eye drop tine. Besides, there would have to be a lot more bone with that horn if it were ripped off another bucks skull. Antlers do not have roots.

  11. Awesome buck, congrats. To the people who think this is fake or another antler, I think your wrong. The reason the end of the third antler is dark or looks like that is because everytime the buck feeds his third antler drags in the dirt, therefore it is darker or black like dirt. Look at pictures of big droptine bucks. All of them are dark like that. If it was another bucks antler you would see a break at the base of the antler.

  12. Usually antlers grow larger at the base, this is growing backwards, thin side at the base and larger end out. Also how would the antler be polished or rubbed clean so close to the bucks eye? Need to x-ray it to be sure. Makes a great story if it is true.

  13. You have to remember this is an antler growing in an abnormal location. It is not going to grow like a normal antler would. And besides, the end of the third main beam was not broken off, so it had to grow like that.

  14. The end of the antler is dark because it still has velvet on it and blood. There is a condition in whitetails, though rare, that causes abnormal antler growth. If you look at the pictures from the side you can see the path the antler took from the base under the skin. it came out just below the eye. This is real. And a taxidermist’s nightmare by the way.

  15. I took an 11 pt. in 2008 with a 12″ third antler coming out just above the right eye. I call him the London Unicorn. Shot it London, Texas. I have 50 acres there. If anyone would like to see him, just let me know.

  16. I know this article is quite old, but I ran across a thread on a forum. It even has pictures of the skinned skull and it is most definitely a third antler growing from somewhere around the eye socket. Not a broken off antler from another deer.

  17. I see no evidence of a droptine coming through the head, no picture of it. The root base of the other antler is clearly on the third antler…. its broken off another deer, whether in a fight, or shot and landed on it. IDK, but it is not another antler growing through the head.

  18. Ben, since when did deer antlers start having roots? They’re not trees. Antlers grow from pedicles, which are part of the skull. The “root” you refer to looks for like un-shed velvet that skull.

  19. Ben, I agree with Don on this one. Deer antlers do not have “roots” like your teeth do. If it broke off, it would either be a jagged or a straight break. This website is good about only posting stories that have been verified.

    If you have sound PROOF that it’s NOT what the author suggests, please bring it forward. Because it’s not something you’ve seen before, does it mean it’s not real. very heard of two headed snakes? Just because you’re not educated on how something like this actually happens in the wild does not mean that it does not happen.

  20. Hey, guys, I looked at all the pics that are posted here and it is not a drop tine coming from its eye. Antlers get thinner at the top of the tines. The one coming from the eye is from a another deer. The tines are smaller that are in his eye than the so called tip of the tine that is pointing to the ground. But even though it does not belong to this deer and it did come from a another deer it is pretty cool.

  21. I would think the guy that shot the deer could tell where the antler is coming from. He definitely refers to it as the buck’s third antler. And there was another buck the year before called Boneface. Probably that buck!

  22. Not sure how to upload or post links, but if you Google Kansas antler eye buck pictures there is a picture of the skinned skull. You can clearly see the eye still in the socket and the antler growing on the outside edge of the socket. There is also an early season velvet picture of this buck as was mentioned earlier.

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