# Deer ear but size

Discussion in 'Deer and Gameheads' started by rbear, Dec 14, 2015.

1. ### rbearWell-Known Member

I always tend to make my ear buts too small and short. Has anyone ever come up with a down and dirty way to tell if they are close to the correct size for the deer you are mounting? I was thinking something like measuring the ear from the notch to the tip and having a mathematical formula to come up with the ear but size. If you look at the pic. and measure from the base of the ear but to the notch then from the base of the ear but to the tip you will see the ear but is 1/3 of the total. That would mean if you measure from the notch to the tip of the ear and divide that in half you will get the length of the ear but. Now I know this will change for the differant postions of the ear but has anyone ever use something like this as a reference?

2. ### Jerry HuffakerWell-Known Member

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I think one important consideration is to make sure your ear canal isn't detached. This will automatically determine the length. i would not go by the length measurements you have illustrated. Ear length can vary widely. The width of the ear butt where it attaches to the head can loosely be determined by the measurement of the widest width of the ear. The base of the ear butt will be approx the same size. To answer your question,The only way you can determine it exactly for the deer you are mounting is to measure everything precisely on each specimen before you skin them.

3. ### Bill YoxWell-Known Member

There could be a proportion size ratio out there, but what I teach...and do myself, is identify the attachment for the total length, then build back the anatomy as I know it, and I get the size by doing so. It helps that I felt live deers ear butts for 30 years, too. It works, though.

4. ### Bill YoxWell-Known Member

Good points Jerry. I was going to add...ear butts will swell some during the highest stage of swelling during the rut, too. That could throw off the equations if there are any.

5. ### rbearWell-Known Member

See that is what I was looking for. "The width of the ear butt where it attaches to the head can loosely be determined by the measurement of the widest width of the ear."
I was looking for a good sound way to double check my work. In the time I have been doing taxidermy I have found there is perportions to everything. I was wondering what this one is for a "normal" deer.
And yes Bill it does help to have live references and time to study them.
Thanks
Ralph

6. ### Bucknut176 5/8

On mature mid-west deer I find that in the ears back position the distance from the back corner of the eye to the ear notch is usually right at 4.5 inches. In the ear alert position, it is 4.5 inches from the back corner of the eye to the back side of the ear butt. I like to double check that to make sure I am in the ballpark when building ear butts.

7. ### Bill YoxWell-Known Member

Hmmm...Ive heard that somewhere before ...wink.

8. ### lance casselmanNew Member

Here's one I took of a bad caped buck that came in. Kinda relaxed in the picture so you can imagine that it would be a little bit long I would imagine if it were alive and muscles were in the proper positions.

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9. ### lance casselmanNew Member

Also let me add also that this is a large mature buck here for my area in coastal sc.

10. ### rbearWell-Known Member

Thanks for all your responces. This weekend when I get some tine I will set down with my references and see if I can come up with something.
Thanks again
Ralph

11. ### Bill YoxWell-Known Member

Like I was saying, anatomy is the way to go. Bruce knows the length measurement to get you in the ball park, for that ear position. Simply do what Lance did and get a carcass, and remove each muscle that attaches the ear cartilage to the skull, including the scutiform cartilage and its midway attachments. Then youll see your cartilage attachment to the skull, and its length. Heck you can then replce those muscles you just removed, one by one, to reassemble. Then when mounting, you do it with clay. Ive been doing it for years.

Thanks Bill

13. ### lance casselmanNew Member

Man I have regretted not cutting the muscles away from the ear about a million times already. That would have helped me out a lot. Bc now I question myself on the proper distance between the form and liner when setting everything up before mounting. I know I have em close to where I want but it would have been a little more reassuring if I had cut those muscles away and studied the cartilage connections a little closer.

14. ### Bill YoxWell-Known Member

Just do it on the next one you cape, pull the cape up the ear, do your referencing, and then finish caping. Bruce told you a number that works, in general, for the attachment/distance. I can certainly vouch for that number and method...

15. ### rbearWell-Known Member

I know that photos aren't as accurate as the real thing but here is what I came up with.
On an ear back the but is 33% of the overall length of the ear or if you measure from the notch to the tip of the ear and divide that by 2 you will get your ear but length.
On an ear forward the but it 15% of the overall length of the ear or if you measure from the notch to the tip of the ear and divide that by 6 you will get your ear but length.
I rounded off the numbers to make it easier to deal with. Hopefully it won't through the numbers off that much.
Our season ends on Jan. 1st. I'm off hunting and get a deer or if I get a late deer in I will measure them and see if this works.
Ralph

16. ### rbearWell-Known Member

Here is a deer using the formula that I came up with. What do you think?
Ralph

17. ### HarvestmoontaxiLake of the woods walleyes

Lots of valuable info from highly knowledgeable men !!!

18. ### DannynewmanWell-Known Member

The seem on that deer is hideous

19. ### rbearWell-Known Member

He is just now dry and not groomed. There is no seam down the back of the neck. I do a but to but cut. What you are seeing is a mane. This is the third one that I have done with a mane.