Posted on: August 7, 2013
In the spring of 2010, really impressive and great looking shed antlers were found in the woods of Gyulaj Hunting Hungary’s Hőgyész hunting area, South-West Hungary. Even at first sight it was c...lear as day from its heavy weight and the high numbers of points and tines that this antler shows a big potential. It was an interesting fact that the stag estimated to be between 6-7 years old at the time, was unknown to professional hunters. It had never been seen before, neither in the September rutting, nor in winter time. During the following rutting season the stag was finally seen in the main rutting place. He was easily recognizable by his special antlers. As it is a kind of local tradition, the professional staff named the miraculous stag. That is how he became „Eugen”. At that time he was still a really young stag, so all professional staff members and experts agreed that Eugen must see many more seasons before he is old enough to be bagged by a lucky hunter. We, at Gyulaj Hunting Hungary wanted to have a deserved CIC world ranklist „Top10 stag” finally as we had many wonderful and impressive trophy stags from Hőgyész, but none of them could achieved top 10 ranking so far. In the end of the winter of 2011 we were all excited about the found shed antlers. And we were not disappointed at all. Eugen’s antlers became much bigger just as we expected. The antlers were found just right in the heart of the Hőgyész area, where he was seen a couple of times, showing he felt safe and good there. The local trophy measurement using CIC- system provided us the following results:
Length of the beams: 104 and 106 cm
Circumference of the burrs: 25,5 and 26,0 cm
Number of points: 10 + 10
Calculated 24hrs trophy weight: 12,80 kg
The estimated CIC point was: 232,78 IP
Of course we were really looking forward what the next September would brings. A bit later than the previous year but he showed up at exactly the same place. He was even more powerful so our expectations and hopes grew even bigger. We hadn't seen a stag with such a huge trophy before on our hunting grounds. In that year Eugen shunned the fights and rut in the background. But the beautiful game was still too young to be bagged, even if many foreign and Hungarian hunters wanted to get him. For that winter he moved back his previous winter place. Those year’s shed antlers were found in the same area as before.
His trophy features were:
Lenght of the beams: 112,5 and 109 cm
Circumference of the burrs: 27,5 and 29,0 cm
Calculated 24hrs trophy weight: 14,10 kg
The estimated CIC point was: 248,83 IP
The following September we awaited Eugen to get back to his private rutting place but he didn’t come. And just as things go in this kind of situations rumors began to spread: „someone has seen him here and others have seen him there”, we even heard rumors that he was shot by different local hunters, but reliable news didn’t arrive. Until February. After a driven hunt close to Eugen’s rutting place our pro. hunters were checking blood of a wounded game and the dogs found a stag’s remains. The stag’s trophy was absolutely different looking but there was no doubt about the fact that they found Eugen’s remains. He had an accident in the velvet period when the stags grow their antlers. His head got smashed so badly, he lost almost the entire left beam, so after the accident he could grow only the remaining small piece of beam and the unharmed left brow tine. During the unknown accident his right beam was also damaged. In spite of all these things his trophy weighed 9,7kg with whole skull. Even with self- contained estimating, Eugen’s trophy weight should have achieved 15 kg without the accident. With his broken antlers probably he couldn’t fight and defend himself against other stags in the rut, so one of them could stab him to death. With his remaining power he could only go until the nearest wallowing place to cool down his wounds and that place became his final resting place.
Many people are asking us, if we are sorry Eugen’s story ended so sad? Yes, we are really sorry. Especially that we know Eugen could haves been our first CIC Top10 stag. Also we are being asked, if we are sorry we didn’t let one of our clients take a final shot, taking Eugen before the right time? Maybe it sounds crazy, but we say ’no’ without hesitation. We believe we have to show good example in wildlife management, so we don’t want our wildlife management to be driven by short therm, money-maker decisions instead of real professionalism. In the pictures Eugen’s last shed antlers can be seen built onto an other dead stag’s skull done by a professional taxidermist as a masterpiece. This beautiful set up trophy is now decorating one of our hunting lodges on Hőgyész Hunting Area, representing the excellence of the local habitat and professionalism for the following generations