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November 04, 2008

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Special Report: The "Field & Stream Buck" Falls

Special Report by Field & Stream Senior Editor Colin Kearns

On September 4, we posted a video on our Whitetail 365 blog of a monster buck walking around unfenced property in Buffalo County, Wisconsin, that many hunters and deer experts speculated could be a new typical world record. Now, two months later, we have more images of the deer—courtesy of Bob Decker, the Wisconsin bowhunter who shot the deer on November 1.

Decker had been in a tree stand for more than three hours, seeing nothing, before he heard a twig snap below him. There, 40 yards away and coming closer, was a big buck. At the time, Decker only knew the deer was plenty big enough to shoot, so when the deer was 6 or 7 yards below, he released his arrow. The buck ran for 50 yards and dropped.

It wasn’t until Decker and his hunting buddy Paul Olson approached the deer that they realized just how big it was. As soon as they saw the buck, Olson started shouting that Decker had killed “the Field & Stream buck!”


F&S contributing editor Scott Bestul, who reported on the buck in the November issue of F&S, has not seen the actual rack, but based on the photos, he said he is almost certain that the buck Decker shot is the same from the video. However, Bestul believes the deer is not a world record and will be scored as a non-typical.


Decker said a score has not been released and added that it will be a close call on whether his buck will be scored typical or non-typical. “I’ve heard people say it could either way,” says Decker. “It’ll just be a judgment call. I have mixed feelings about [its potential as a world record]. I’d love it if it was the record. But if it’s not, maybe I can quietly ride off into the sunset and get out of the spotlight. Either way, I’m proud to have taken the deer.”

What do you think: World record or not? Typical or non-typical? And keep checking whitetail365.com for the latest on this story.


Jesse Bragg

who really cares typical or non-typical. record or not its a once in a lifetime buck and I believe that you should be thankful to take a deer like that.

ken wyka

Nice shot, this is a once in a lifetime buck,put yourself in this man's boots,could you make that shot,that is why to much bow practice is never enough,be thankful for this magical time of year,god bless the u.s.a
k.w hurley wi.


Well done. Nice shot.


wish we could get a few more pics,
Great job!

billie bryson

is that there a whitetailed buck or a black tailed? how many points?


very nice buck, thats the time not to miss haha


nice. record or no record thats big.

The Deerstroyer

I"ll bet it goes non typical but who cares about score when u have killed a True Monarch by ANYONE'S standards


I think it looks like a couple tines fork at the beam, so non-typical is my guess, but agian like everyone is saying who cares it's a buck of a lifetime! Good job. I would like to know if it was a paid hunt or if it was just a landowner, or owner friend. ?


No need to have any doubt you arrowed A world class whitetail world record or not........

bob d

what a sweet deer, i cannot wait until shot gun season to take a good buck good job man

Aaron Pape

hey billie bryson, this is wisconsin. There are no blacktails in wisconsin. Blacktails live in the Northwest. jeez.



Brian Demenge

Nice deer, but I want to know why the guy that got the footage of it would broadcast it. Think you would want to keep that secret to yourself. But oh well, nice deer!

Tim I

I could care less of boone and crockett or pope and young !!! That deer is what white tailed deer hunting in Wisconsin is all about!!!!!!!!


Bob that is truly a beautiful WISCONSIN White-Tailed Deer. Being from Wisconsin myself, I can surely appreciate what you've done. I spend everyday in tree stand during the season when I'm not working. I know how 3 hours can feel when you see nothing, and then all of sudden the woods comes alive. You have made us Wisconsinites proud.


If I was graced by the Lord enough to shoot a deer like that, I wouldn't care if it was a world record or not. I would be shaking to bad to even fill out the paperwork. Congratulations on a awesome trophy.


That's amazing - especially to get him at bow range. Like everyone else, I wouldn't care if it was a world-record or not. If I took that one, I'd almost be tempted to stop hunting after that - almost.

Double D

Can I get a shout out for Quality Deer Management?! Buffalo County has proven again why it works. Let the little ones go and let em grow!!!! Nice job!!
-Wisconsin Northwoods


Way to go! Glad to see someone local get him, especially with the bow! What a dream come true. Way to go Bob!!


Nice work! Wow! Awesome! Amazing! Jaw Dropping! Not sure if those words do it justice. Love the new pictures here on F & S. The local paper in Eau Claire showed only one photo on Monday and it wasn't nearly as nice as these. The hardest part for me would be knowing that I will never probably have a chance like that again........still have to dig deep and find the grit to put all that preseason work and those early mornings to the woods. I agree....that is what Wisconsin Whitetail Hunters dream about at night!!


I've seen bigger in my backyard.


It may be a record, i dont have time to try to score it right now. The important thing is that this is a trophy that seems to have been taken in non-shady circumstances by a legit hunter. I hope this turns out to be true, as many large deer killed each year have very suspicious stories to go along with them. As for how it will be scored, I think it shold be scored as a typical, but it is definitely close. My personal opinion is that all deer should be officially scored as total gross antler (gross non-typical) because this is the only thing that truly measures how much antler there is. Regardless, this is an enormous deer. Congratulations to the hunter.


I love hunting, but a buck that big deserves to live.


As a native Wisconsinite and being that I grew up close to Mondovi and Buffalo County, all I can say is thank goodness a local true hunter was the one to take this deer as opposed to an out of stater who pays $4800 to spend 4 days in a stand on a ranch. The boom in popularity of this region for deer hunting has made it near impossible for many average people to even think of taking a deer like this. Congratulations Mr. Decker!

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