Red River WMA gives up huge buck

Wildlife management area deer sports huge rack, bigger body.

Hunting public land takes a bit of extra work. That’s a lesson Trent Boudreaux learned when he first started hunting Red River Wildlife Management Area as a teenager in 1998.

“It’s tough to get away from the crowd,” he said. “It’s taken me years to learn the land. You see the signs of traffic, and you avoid that. You have to be prepared to walk much farther than most people do.”

It’s a labor of love for Boudreaux, though, and it’s one that has paid off for the 30-year old Thibodeaux resident.

On Dec. 27, during a hunt with friends, Boudreaux bagged a buck sporting a rack that green scored 144 1/8 inches gross score, and 140 7/8 Boone and Crocket after deductions were made.

But perhaps the most impressive thing about the 8-point buck might be its weight: The deer tipped the scales at a whopping 255 pounds, a figure made even more impressive considering the deer was only 4 ½ years old.

“It was the heaviest one they’ve seen come out of there in a while,” Boudreaux said. “The fat on it was really thick. I don’t know if it was early in the rut, because they’ll drop some pounds during the rut. But it just had inches of fat on it.”

The hunt came on a frigid morning. Boudreaux said it was 25 degrees at daybreak,and he said the woods were really quiet until about 8:15 a.m. when the sun began to melt the ice hanging from the trees around him.

At about 8:45 a.m., Boudreaux heard a noise behind him — a doe had snuck out and busted him as he turned to face her. But as he continued to slowly stand
up, he spotted the buck only a few steps behind that doe.

He shouldered his H&R Handi-Rifle .444 and fired at the buck that was only 70 yards away.

Boudreaux didn’t get the immediate results he sought, however.

“He sped off, real low to the ground,” he said. “I’ve seen them do that before. I thought I had missed him. I was just sick to my stomach.”

But when he overcame his disappointment and made it to the ground, he noticed a pool of blood where the deer had been standing at the shot. His hopes revived, Boudreaux sat on the ground for 20 minutes to gather his wits and then began tracking the deer.

He found the buck approximately 80 yards away.

Once the deer had been taken from the WMA, Boudreaux couldn’t wait to weigh the buck. So, he found a game warden nearby who took him to a biologist who guessed it would weigh 250. When it registered 255 on the scale, Boudreaux said it finally registered that he had bagged the deer of a lifetime.

“All I (had been) thinking (was) that I missed and there would be no way (my friends) are going to believe me when I (told) them it was a wall hanger,”
Boudreaux wrote in an email recollecting the story. “I knew it was a big deer, but had no clue he was that nice. I feel truly blessed to be able to experience a hunt like this with great friends.”

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