PARKVILLE, Mo. -- Hunting may be in a bit of a slow period as many sportsmen look toward spring turkey season.
But there's one form of hunting that's perfect right now – shed hunting. A set of trophy deer antlers might be waiting in the woods for you.
Nathan Woodland, with the Missouri Department of Conservation, said this weekend is the perfect opportunity.
“So they fall off and normally, by this time of the year, those antlers are laying on the ground for people to find,” Woodland told FOX4. “So when we get nice weather like this, it’s a lot of fun to look for these.”
Woodland explained deer antlers grow anew each year. They can be tricky to find, often hidden in leaves and, eventually, devoured by various woodland creatures.
“Other animals utilize the nutrients that are in these, like squirrels and mice and other rodents have a tendency to chew or gnaw on these,” Woodland said.
There’s really only two rules to follow:
You have to make sure you have permission to look for shed antlers in the area you’re searching.
And, if you find a so-called “dead head,” antlers still attached to a deer skull, you’ll need to reach out to a local conservation officer to prove the animal wasn’t poached for its antlers.
“They’ve got some paperwork to fill out, just to make sure that you legally found these in the woods and you didn’t go out and poach the animal to get it.”