New York's Top Bucks From 2006

New York's Top Bucks From 2006

Joseph Ebel's archery non-typical from Tompkins County was one of the top five taken in the Northeast last year! (August 2007)

Joseph Ebel's archery non-typical from Tompkins County was one of the top five taken in the Northeast last year!
Photo courtesy of Joseph Ebel.

During the course of the year, I get the opportunity to write about many of the biggest bucks taken throughout New York and New England.

It's fun to recap a hunting season with an in-depth look at the best bucks taken during each segment of the long New York's hunting season -- by archery, firearm and muzzleloader.

Last year, several bucks were taken that ranked among the very best taken in all of the Northeast during 2006.

That isn't really unusual, because New York consistently produces many of the region's best bucks. Year after year, you can't beat the Empire State when it comes to trophy buck potential.

According to the Northeast Big Buck Club -- the regional scoring and record-keeping organization for New York and New England whitetails -- deer hunters had a banner year when it came to harvesting big bucks.

The NBBC scores bucks for all of New England and New York, and its scorers scour the region in an effort to uncover the year's biggest trophies.

This article was written in March 2007, and some bucks may not yet have been scored.

Some hunters wait to get their buck scored until after it comes back from the taxidermist. Others just forget about it -- or don't even realize they have a record-class buck till someone else mentions it.

The aim of this article is to call attention to the best bucks that have surfaced so far, and to help New York's hunters get a sense of their overall success last season.

Also, keep in mind that the NBBC records reflect the gross Boone and Crockett score (before deductions).

According to NBBC records, New York's hunters took four (or 27 percent) of the region's 15 best bucks, including the biggest firearms non-typical buck, the largest archery non-typical buck and the largest muzzleloader typical buck.

Here's a look at some of 2006's best bucks from New York, along with a comparison of results from the 2005 season.

As a bonus, I'll show you how New York's best archery, muzzleloader and firearm bucks compare to the best bucks taken throughout New England in 2006.

That should give us a great perspective on this past season!

THE MASTROIANNI BUCK

During the past few years, archers have taken an increasing percentage of this state's best bucks.

That trend continued in late October 2006, when Lewis County archer James Mastroianni arrowed a great-looking 17-point non-typical.

Mastroianni's buck grossed 179 2/8 and netted 166 6/8 Pope and Young points. This rack was wide, at 24 3/8 inches inside, but it has short beams of 18 5/8 and 21 3/8 inches.

A little-known Boone and Crockett scoring rule requires that the inside spread "credit" cannot be more than the length of the longer main beam.

Due to this rule, therefore, this buck lost three inches of its inside spread.

Scoring issues aside, there's plenty to admire about this rack, particularly its eight abnormal points. Six of those points are 5 7/8 to 9 6/8 inches long!

Its wide rack, great character, and big body (it field-dressed at 205 pounds) make this archery buck very impressive.

As if having shot the top archery buck of the year wasn't enough, Mastroianni went on to shoot a 163 6/8-inch 10-pointer during the gun season in Schoharie County!

Many other good bucks fell to New York's archers last year.

For example, Joseph Ebel shot a non-typical 16-pointer in Tompkins County that scored a whopping 174 1/8 inches gross and netted 169 3/8 inches P&Y.

Daniel Nugent arrowed a 164 7/8-inch 10-point typical buck in Wyoming County.

Meanwhile, R. Scott Peck shot a 163-inch 10-pointer in Steuben County. Finally, Joseph Randazzo took a 10-pointer in Westchester County that grossed 152 2/8 inches and dressed 210 pounds.

As you can see, archers all across New York State downed some amazing bucks in 2006.

Now let's look at how archers did throughout the Northeast last season.

Interestingly, two of the top five bucks from the Northeast's 2006 archery season came from New York.

In addition to Mastroianni's trophy, Joe Ebel's 16-point non-typical gross-scored 174 1/8.

Paul Buccacio's great 10-point typical buck was by far the most impressive deer of the season, a new state-record archery typical for Massachusetts.

Stephen Ponte's Rhode Island 10-point typical was also a new state record for typical archery bucks in that state, with a gross score of 166 7/8.

Stephen Ingrassia's Bay State 16-point non-typical also made the top five.

How did 2006 compare to the previous year? In 2005, New York's archery hunters took some monstrous bucks.

Topping the list was Rex Taft's monster from Steuben County that gross-scored 203 7/8 and netted 198 4/8 B&C points. This was the biggest non-typical archery buck shot in the entire Northeast in 2005.

Other great archery bucks from New York's 2005 season included Peter Cillione's Dutchess County 13-point non-typical with a gross score of 162 7/8, and Brian Doyle's Oneida County 9-point typical that grossed 161 7/8.

BIGGEST GUN BUCK

The Cuozzo Buck

Year after year, shotgun and rifle hunters take the vast majority of deer in this state. And many of the biggest bucks fall to a bullet, ball or slug.

Gun hunters have been roaming the woods of the Empire State for centuries and they are shooting as many quality trophy whitetails now as at any point in history.

As if having shot the top archery buck of the year wasn't enough, James Mastroianni went on to shoot a 163 6/8-inch 0-pointer during the gun season in Schoharie County!

In last month's issue of New York Game & Fish, I brought you the story of the year's best gun buck -- a monster 225-pound, 15-point non-typical taken in Chemung County by hunter Bob Cuozzo.

According to the NBBC and New York State Big Buck Club, its gross non-typical score is 215 3/8. The buck nets 209 6/8 B&C points after asymmetry deductions.

The rack has a 6x6, 190-class typical frame complemented by seven abnormal points -- 3 on the right, 4 on the left -- that add 21 inches of abnormal growth.

This rack's tine length and mass are its most obvious outstanding features. This monster has four tines over 12 inches long (the G-2s and G-3s on each side) and outstanding brow tines at 9 and 8 3/8 inches.

The bases measure 5 6/8 and 5 4/8 inches, and all eight circumference measurements total 44 2/8. (Anything over 40 inches is quite impressive!)

The seven abnormal points are primarily sticker points, except for impressive split brow tines on both sides.

In short, this buck has it all! It now stands atop the list of New York non-typicals killed in 2006, according to Northeast Big Buck Club records.

As often happens during a year when a giant buck is killed, other very impressive bucks can go unnoticed. Let's look at several other great firearm bucks from 2006.

In New York, two huge 17-point non-typicals fell this past year also -- the first in Wayne County to Stephan Bailey. Its rack had a gross score of 183 2/8 and a net B&C score of 177 1/8. The big-racked buck had a big body too: 215 pounds field-dressed.

The second 17-point non-typical, taken in Oneida County by hunter James C. Doyle, scored 181 6/8 gross and 176 7/8 net B&C.

Another great non-typical worth mentioning was Jeff Robinson's 169 5/8-inch 12-pointer from Steuben County.

Some great typical bucks fell to gun hunters as well.

Charles Farney's 11-pointer topped the list at 174 7/8 gross B&C points, or 162 0/8 net.

Other very good typical gun bucks include Marvin Vahue's Monroe County 10-pointer, which scored 166 7/8 gross B&C, with an inside spread of just under 20 inches.

And how about Jesse McNitt's 163 6/8-inch 9-pointer from Oswego County, with its huge 24-inch inside spread?

Of course, the Mastroianni typical gun buck scored 163 6/8 as well.

How did 2006 compare to the previous year?

In 2005, New York's gun hunters took some monstrous bucks. Heading the list was Andy Hall's huge 17-point non-typical from Ontario County, which gross-scored 201 6/8 and netted a whopping 192 6/8 B&C points. It was one of the biggest non-typicals shot in 2005 in the entire Northeast.

Interestingly, two of the top five bucks from the Northeast's 2006 archery season came from New York.

In addition to Mastroianni's trophy, Joe Ebel's 16-point non-typical gross-scored 174 1/8.

Paul Buccacio's great 10-point typical buck was by far the most impressive deer of the season, a new state-record archery typical for Massachusetts.

Stephen Ponte's Rhode Island 10-point typical was also a new state record for typical archery bucks in that state, with a gross score of 166 7/8.

Stephen Ingrassia's Bay State 16-point non-typical also made the top five.

How did 2006 compare to the previous year? In 2005, New York's archery hunters took some monstrous bucks.

Topping the list was Rex Taft's monster from Steuben County that gross-scored 203 7/8 and netted 198 4/8 B&C points. This was the biggest non-typical archery buck shot in the entire Northeast in 2005.

Other great archery bucks from New York's 2005 season included Peter Cillione's Dutchess County 13-point non-typical with a gross score of 162 7/8, and Brian Doyle's Oneida County 9-point typical that grossed 161 7/8.

BIGGEST GUN BUCK

The Cuozzo Buck

Year after year, shotgun and rifle hunters take the vast majority of deer in this state. And many of the biggest bucks fall to a bullet, ball or slug.

Gun hunters have been roaming the woods of the Empire State for centuries and they are shooting as many quality trophy whitetails now as at any point in history.

As if having shot the top archery buck of the year wasn't enough, James Mastroianni went on to shoot a 163 6/8-inch 0-pointer during the gun season in Schoharie County!

In last month's issue of New York Game & Fish, I brought you the story of the year's best gun buck -- a monster 225-pound, 15-point non-typical taken in Chemung County by hunter Bob Cuozzo.

According to the NBBC and New York State Big Buck Club, its gross non-typical score is 215 3/8. The buck nets 209 6/8 B&C points after asymmetry deductions.

The rack has a 6x6, 190-class typical frame complemented by seven abnormal points -- 3 on the right, 4 on the left -- that add 21 inches of abnormal growth.

This rack's tine length and mass are its most obvious outstanding features. This monster has four tines over 12 inches long (the G-2s and G-3s on each side) and outstanding brow tines at 9 and 8 3/8 inches.

The bases measure 5 6/8 and 5 4/8 inches, and all eight circumference measurements total 44 2/8. (Anything over 40 inches is quite impressive!)

The seven abnormal points are primarily sticker points, except for impressive split brow tines on both sides.

In short, this buck has it all! It now stands atop the list of New York non-typicals killed in 2006, according to Northeast Big Buck Club records.

As often happens during a year when a giant buck is killed, other very impressive bucks can go unnoticed. Let's look at several other great firearm bucks from 2006.

In New York, two huge 17-point non-typicals fell this past year also -- the first in Wayne County to Stephan Bailey. Its rack had a gross score of 183 2/8 and a net B&C score of 177 1/8. The big-racked buck had a big body too: 215 pounds field-dressed.

The second 17-point non-typical, taken in Oneida County by hunter James C. Doyle, scored 181 6/8 gross and 176 7/8 net B&C.

Another great non-typical worth mentioning was Jeff Robinson's 169 5/8-inch 12-pointer from Steuben County.

Some great typical bucks fell to gun hunters as well.

Charles Farney's 11-pointer topped the list at 174 7/8 gross B&C points, or 162 0/8 net.

Other very good typical gun bucks include Marvin Vahue's Monroe County 10-pointer, which scored 166 7/8 gross B&C, with an inside spread of just under 20 inches.

And how about Jesse McNitt's 163 6/8-inch 9-pointer from Oswego County, with its huge 24-inch inside spread?

Of course, the Mastroianni typical gun buck scored 163 6/8 as well.

How did 2006 compare to the previous year?

In 2005, New York's gun hunters took some monstrous bucks. Heading the list was Andy Hall's huge 17-point non-typical from Ontario County, which gross-scored 201 6/8 and netted a whopping 192 6/8 B&C points. It was one of the biggest non-typicals shot in 2005 in the entire Northeast.

Other great firearms bucks from New York's 2005 season included two outstanding 10-point typicals -- Donald Davenport's 172 5/8 monster from Oswego County and Mitchell Baxter's 171 7/8-inch buck from Cattaraugus County.

How did New York's gun hunters compare to the rest of the Northeast?

In addition to Bob Cuozzo's 209 6/8 non-typical, there's John Klucky's 14-point typical from New Hampshire, Chris McKay's 17-point non-typical taken in Massachusetts, Blake Gowen's 15-point Granite State non-typical and a 185 0/8 17-point Maine non-typical taken by Alan Ross.

New Yorkers will be proud to note that the best buck of the Northeast's 2006 firearms season came from the Empire State. Cuozzo's great buck was by far the largest in the region last year.

However, Klucky's New Hampshire buck was the only typical to make the top five in the region, although several very impressive typicals were taken that grossed in the mid-170s in both New York and New England.

FRANK WALTMAN'S MUZZLELOADER BUCK

Muzzleloader hunting is growing in popularity all across the Northeast, with a growing percentage of the total harvest falling during "primitive" seasons. In addition, more hunters are opting to use their muzzleloaders during firearms seasons.

All of this adds up to more big bucks falling to muzzleloader hunters, and 2006 was no exception. Frank Waltman shot an outstanding typical in Livingston County with his muzzleloader during regular firearms season in mid-November.

His big 10-pointer grossed 168 1/8 and netted 161 5/8 Boone and Crockett points. The impressive typical is wide, with an inside spread of 20 5/8.

The rack has very long main beams at 26 7/8 inches (right) and 27 7/8 inches (left). Main beams over 25 inches are quite impressive.

The buck had good mass, with bases of about 5 inches on both sides, and good tine length with three tines over 9 inches long.

According to NBBC records, Waltman's buck is the second largest muzzleloader buck killed in New York in recent years, behind Greg Radford's great-looking 174-inch 11-pointer from 2002. Coincidentally, this buck also came from Livingston County!

The NBBC did not score any other muzzleloader bucks over 150 inches in 2006. But in 2005, New York's muzzleloader hunters took some monstrous bucks as well. Topping the list was Larry Jenson's 162 7/8-inch non-typical 12-point from Chenango County.

Some impressive typicals fell to Mike Walker (a 151 2/8-inch 10-pointer from Steuben County) and to Mark Malys (a 150 2/8-inch 9-pointer from Cayuga County).

According to the NBBC's gross-score rankings, the best muzzleloader bucks from 2006 were Bill Tatro's Bay State 17-pointer, gross-scoring 170 2/8; Chad Baker's Massachusetts 11-point non-typical scoring 168 1/8; the Waltman buck; another Tatro 10-point trophy scoring 165 0/8; and Michael Williams' 154 6/8 10-point typical from Rhode Island.

As this article was written, note that Waltman's great buck is the best typical taken by muzzleloader from the entire Northeast in 2006, and is the third-largest gross-scoring muzzleloader buck from the region.

Tatro's Massachusetts monster is the new No. 1 non-typical muzzleloader bucks for his state. And notice that he also took a second huge typical with his muzzleloader!

OUTLOOK FOR 2006

Many other quality bucks were taken in New York in 2006. We could never list them all in a single article. But when we compare the results to the previous few seasons, it's obvious that New York's hunters continue to take trophy bucks in every category, in every corner of the state.

New Yorkers will be proud to note that the best buck of

the Northeast's 2006 firearms season came from the Empire State.

Also interesting to note is that each year, this state's best bucks tend to be among the top bucks taken in the Northeast.

Given that many hunters in our region hunt in more than one state, I find it helpful to look at the Northeast Region and compare results.

Based on general comparisons of the past few seasons, New York remains one of the most productive trophy-buck states in the Northeast and should be considered a prime destination for hunters, whether armed with a shotgun, muzzleloader, rifle or bow.

New York has produced at least three 200-class gross-scoring hunter-killed bucks in recent years, and at least four others that gross-scored over 180 inches B&C. That's a lot of antler and a lot to be proud of.

After the 2007 season, who knows what great new bucks we'll have to write about?

For more information about New York's trophy bucks, log onto the Northeast Big Buck Club's Web site at www.bigbuckclub.com, or e-mail jbhunts@aol.com. You can also write to the NBBC at 390 Marshall Street, Paxton, MA 01612.

To buy the NBBC's latest record book, Northeast Trophy Whitetails V, visit the club's Web site.

You can visit the New York State Big Bucks Club's Web site at www.nys-big-buck.org.contact. Or write them at P.O. Box 451, Vernon, NY 13476.

Find more about New York fishing and hunting at NewYorkGameandFish.com

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