Suffolk County Produces Another Big New York Bow Buck in 2013!
Plus: Take a Peak at Two Monsters From Monroe & Wayne Counties
By Jeff Brown
Every year the state of New York produces some of the Northeast region’s biggest bucks. In fact, over the previous five hunting seasons (2008-2012), this state’s hunters brought us three bucks that gross over 200”, and another 44 bucks with gross scores between 170-199” (according to the Northeast Big Buck Club records.) From what we have seen so far regarding the 2013 hunting season, that trend will continue! In fact, we are bringing you a feature story on a great Suffolk County bow buck from the 2013 season, and we have news of two other giants that will be featured in upcoming issues.
Suburban Suffolk County is home to many of New York’s top gross scoring archery bucks, and some of the biggest bow bucks ever to come from the Northeast. According to the NBBC records, NY’s top three gross scoring archery bucks of all time came from this county, and five of the top seven were taken here. That is incredible given how good the hunting is in the rest of this state! So it should come as no surprise that one of this state’s best archery bucks of 2013 fell to a suburban archer in this county.
As with most stories about big suburban bucks, this one starts with access to a very good piece of property.
Archer Rick DiBene originally got permission to hunt a large and promising piece of Long Island property from his good friend, Mike Scavone. The land owner had experienced many problems with the overpopulated deer herd on and around the property, and was more than happy to have Mike and Rick thin out that herd. So their plan revolved around the harvest of as many does as they could legally shoot. But when it came to bucks, they planned to only shoot mature trophies they were willing to mount. So they let the little bucks walk, focused on taking does, and put themselves in a great position to shoot a buck of a lifetime. Over the next several seasons the pair took some very nice trophy bucks, and a lot of does!
The property is a mix of hard woods, big lawns and walking trails. It also contains a very small fresh water pond. The local deer do not use this property for bedding, but primarily pass through the piece, grazing on the fresh lawns and drinking from the pond. Mike and Rick run trail cameras all year and have many of pictures of nice bucks that pass through. However, over the many years they have hunted this property, they have only killed three bucks that had previously posed for photos. So it seems most of the good bucks they take on the property are “first timers” passing through the property. And that would be the case with Rick’s great 2013 buck…
But before we get to the 2013 hunt, let’s take a moment to learn a little more about Rick. An avid bowhunter, Rick forgoes all other methods of hunting and dedicates himself to bow hunting only. He has killed many good bucks over the years – more than most hunters – when you consider that he primarily hunts in New York. His trophies include a 163” non-typical 13-Point from 2011; five bucks that score between 130 & 140”; and many bucks that score up to about 125”. So it is very safe to say that Rick knows what a trophy buck looks like, and he knows a little something about what it takes to successfully harvest one.
Now back to the 2013 season. The property offered Mike and Rick a new twist: for the first time it was loaded with acorns! By mid-October the “low area” near the pond was torn up with deer sign around the oak trees, so Rick moved his stand to take advantage of this bounty, as it might help to “hold” some of these pass-through bucks and keep them on the property for longer chunks of time. Rick decided to move his stand to a tree they now call the "triple tree" because there are three good trails that form an intersection within twenty yards. This would be the tree that provided Rick with an opportunity at his best buck ever!
Rick’s first hunt in the “triple tree” took place early morning on October 25th. The wind was howling in the darkness as Rick got set up in the stand, but he could hear deer passing close by. As first light emerged, Rick could see a very large bodied deer about a hundred yards away. It looked as though the deer, which he assumed was a buck, was feeding on acorns. Rick’s plan was coming together perfectly. After waiting a few minutes, he decided to grab his rattling antlers and try to get the attention of the big deer. To his surprise, the deer immediately charged towards the base of his tree. It was a buck! A BIG buck! Rick quickly hung up the antlers, grabbed his Mathews Z7 and came to full draw, just as the buck got to the tree. The buck saw the movement and ran out about fifteen yards, presenting a perfect quartering away shot. Rick did not hesitate and let his arrow fly! The shot hit a little more forward than he wanted, but Rick felt it was a good hit, confident his Rage 2-blade would do the job. He watched the buck run about twenty yards, then stop and look around. The buck walked another twenty yards into a thicket and out of sight.
Just then Rick caught some movement below him, and standing right where he had just shot the big buck was a small 6-Point followed by a 130-class 8-Point! Both must have come to the sound of the rattling. Rick could have shot the big eight, but was thinking that he had just shot the biggest buck of his life, and the last thing he wanted to do was spook the wounded deer and make him run further. The big eight put his nose to the ground and went into the thicket. To Rick it looked like the buck was making a rub on a tree in the thicket. So he grabbed his binoculars and was shocked by what he saw! The big eight was pushing around the wounded monster buck, who was having trouble holding his head up! Finally the big buck Rick shot succumbed to the fatal shot, and the 8-Point (undoubtedly thinking he had vanquished his rival) walked off.
Rick could not wait to climb down and go check out his huge buck. Fortunately he had been updating Mike with cell phone calls, and as with all good hunting partners, Mike continued to tell Rick to remain calm and give the buck a little time. But when Rick finally was able to gather his composure and climb down, he was not disappointed at what he found. His buck was a giant! The first moment he laid his hands on the rack was an unforgettable experience, and a memory that will last for a lifetime...
Scores & Stats
This is an impressive buck, as a typical 10-Point, or as a non-typical 13-Point. The total gross score, including 5 6/8” of abnormal growth (3 small points) is 175 2/8”. If we ignore the abnormal growth, the total typical gross score is 169 4/8”. The buck is wide, with a 21 3/8” inside spread. The main beams are good, at 24 4/8” and 25 5/8”. Tine length is VERY good, with three tines over 10” – the longest a 12 1/8” right G-2. Mass is reasonably good with 4 4/8” bases. According to the NBBC records, this is the largest typical bow buck killed in NY since 2011, when Jamie Koch arrowed a 176” 10-Point in Genesee County, and it will rank in the top 15 all-time for archery typicals from this state. Overall this is a very strong archery typical that would be considered a trophy just about anywhere in the world!
There is no doubt that suburban Suffolk County New York is a leading contender to produce future trophy bucks. Not only has it already produced a state record non-typical bow buck, and the state’s three top gross-scoring bow bucks, but it is also responsible for producing three of the top six gross scoring archery bucks ever from the entire Northeast! But don’t think for a moment that other counties in this state are lagging behind. In fact, great bucks come from every corner of this state each season. Check out our “sidebar teasers” for photos and scores on a few outstanding bucks from 2013 that we will be featuring in upcoming issues of this magazine.
These two great bucks will be featured in upcoming issues of Northeast Big Bucks Magazine!
Wayne County, New York
Score: 202 4/8” gross, 191 7/8” net non-typical
- 19 scorable points, 5x5 typical with 9 abnormal points
- 50 7/8” of non-typical growth
- 1st circumferences of 5 6/8” and 7 0/8”
- 21” inside spread
Monroe County, New York
Score: 183 7/8” gross, 177 0/8” net typical
- 10-point typical
- four tines measuring between 10 5/8” to 12 2/8”
- main beams 27 1/8” and 28”
- 21 4/8’ inside spread