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Whitetail.....cleft palate???

Discussion in 'Deer and Gameheads' started by AUplantman, Jan 24, 2011.

  1. AUplantman

    AUplantman New Member

    Here are a couple of pics from a deer I got in this weekend. I knew right off it was a mature buck, with a roman nose, but did not notice the deformity, until I started to skin off the head. This deer had really good mass all the way out, and the neck measures 23" at the smallest point tight behind the ears.

    Would this be considered a cleft palate? is there such thing in deer? as you can see, the deer only had a partial tooth in front on the lower jaw. Dont know if all of this is due to an injury, or naturally occuring. I removed a jaw bone to have him aged, but I am guessing that he is 5 or 6 yrs old.

    Attached Files:

  2. bwilke

    bwilke Member

    Wow thats strange. Hopefully that isn't one of those mounts that the customer "wants just like it was when he shot it"

  3. I'm guessing its an injury. NOT a cleft Palate. Old Injury. Its the Septum/ hard Palate Junction thats damaged, Not the Palete itself. Interesting find.
  4. TN Bucknasty

    TN Bucknasty New Member

    The condition this particular deer is suffering from is very common in Alabama and in my home state of Tennessee. However, it is most prevalent in the Appalachian region of Eastern Kentucky. Sometimes the condition is also found in humans. The technical term for the deer would be "inbred", which in layman's terms means, his uncle nailed his mother and they had a freak baby. Often the victims of such shenanigans will be missing teeth. Victims may also enjoy spitting tobacco, sitting on the porch picking a banjo, watching NASCAR, and making violent love to farm animals. Usually children and animals suffering from the condition are born in the months following a family reunion. Inbred people and animals will occasionally have an anus where their face should be. See also; Peyton Manning.
  5. james.garrison

    james.garrison New Member


    I think you are right.....It looks like a cleft palate. Take a close look at this deer. Once I face caped it, it looked a lot like yours. My buddy (who is a veternarian) verified that mine was in fact a cleft palate. He explained that if the hole had been just a little further back, the deer would have drowned itself while nursing....According to him, you dont see alot of it because most dont survive nursing...Milk goes straight to their lungs. The interesting thing here, is I shot another deer 4 weeks later, not 20 yards from where I shot this deer that also had a cleft pallet.....Brothers I suppose.
  6. AUplantman

    AUplantman New Member

    He just wants a shoulder mount..........my choice! :)
    I wondered about an injury, but could not find any sign of scar tissue, or excess cartilage to indicate trauma.
    I notice that your deer has some deformity of the nose pad also.... What about front teeth of the lower jaw? Were they all there? This deers condition was not really noticable from the outside in any way. The only thing noticable was the Roman nose.
  7. Literally, there is a "cleft" in the palate but the question is whether it is congenital (developmental) or the result of an injury? That's hard to tell without a more complete "autopsy". The fact that the nose pad is intact and the lower incisors are broken &/or missing would indicate injury as a more likely cause. I got kicked in the face by a horse once and had a hole in my lower lip that was about half that size so I can imagine how an injury could do this. He might have tried to kiss a pickup fender at 70 MPH. The picture from Jim Garrison appears to be a more typical congenital cleft palate.
  8. cypresslake

    cypresslake Jude Bordelon Cypresslake Taxidermy

    wish i had a picture, i had one just about like that last year
  9. james.garrison

    james.garrison New Member

    Nope......Both of the deer I harvested had normal teeth patterns on the lower jaw. The 2nd buck (which I dont have a picture of), was far less noticable when just looking at the deer. But when face caped, it had the exact same hole in the palate.........Maybe I weeded out that gene by flinging a couple of arrows......But on second thought, both deer were dang nice.....So maybe I need to figure out how to make all the bucks on my property Hair lips.......