Most species of deer naturally shed their antlers between January and April after the mating season is over. They grow back each year, many times larger than the year before. It's fun to hunt for antler sheds. Once you have found some nice deer antler sheds, you can sell them to craftsman or create things yourself with them. Call your local Department of Natural Resources (DNR) to discover if your area has any laws regulating antler hunting.
Create a Coat/Hat Hanger
This is an easy project to make use of smaller pieces or spike antlers. Simply drill out a hole at the center of the base and glue in the head of a screw. Once dry, you can screw this into the wall by rotating the antler.
Attach two to three larger antler racks together as a chandelier. The racks can be fastened together with screws and/or decorative rope or wire. By drilling holes through the largest center sections, you can wire the racks for lighting. If you do not wish to go to all that trouble, simply draping them with Christmas lights or attaching small candles also gives a nice effect.
Deer antler sheds make simple but beautiful candlelit table centerpieces. Cut off the tips on a nicely curled set of deer antlers. The antlers must be able to sturdily stand on their own without tipping over. If it is a little wobbly, a bit of polymer clay can be used at the base. This can also help protect the table from scratches. Drill out the center to the size of tea light candles.
Make Rattling Horns
Hunters will appreciate a nice set of rattling horns. These are two small racks attached by a rope approximately 2 feet in length. This way, the hunter can fling the antlers over his shoulder or backpack when walking through the woods. The hunter rubs or cracks the racks together to mimic the sounds of bucks wrestling during the rut, which can encourage big, territorial bucks to enter the area looking to join the fight.
Sell to Craftsman
Craftsman pay a good price for clean deer antler sheds. The types of crafts that deer antler sheds can be used for are as limitless as the imagination. Even smaller pieces hold value for those looking to fashion knife handles and such. A great place to sell deer antler sheds is online. Be aware that tags might be required to move antlers out of state. Contact your local DNR office for details.
- whitetail buck image by Bruce MacQueen from Fotolia.com