Monster mash: Big Buck Club recognizes 2011’s best
Canastota, N.Y. — Some of New York state’s biggest whitetails were recognized at the New York State Big Buck Club’s 40th annual awards banquet this fall.
Each year, club founder Bob Estes and many official scorers from across the state coordinate the event, which attracted 275 people this year. Two hundred twenty bucks were entered into the club for 2011, slightly down from 230 for the 2010 season.
The club has minimum scores of 120 inches and 145 inches, respectively, for archery typicals and nontypicals. Gun and muzzleloader kills must score 140 inches for typicals and 165 inches for nontypicals.
The banquet is held at the Rusty Rail Party House every September. Each successful hunter is presented with an award certificate at the banquet.
Each year, the hunter with the top archery buck and gun buck in the state is presented with a beautiful painting depicting their deer in the wild.
The top archery nontypical of the year was arrowed by Michael Giarraputo in Suffolk County. Sporting 23 points and scoring 210 4⁄8, the buck is also the new state record for an archery-killed nontypical. Interestingly, the second-largest nontypical for 2011 was also taken with a bow, by Ray Mortimer in Chautauqua County. That 21-point behemoth scored 201 6⁄8.
Top honors for archery typical went to Shawn Gianforte, whose Genesee County 14-pointer scored 170 1⁄8. In the gun category, Mike Canale’s 18-point non-typical from Ontario County was the top gun nontypical with a score of 201 4⁄8.
The top gun typical whitetail of the year was a Warren County 10-pointer scoring 161 0⁄8, taken by Adam Hayes. Floyd Koerner’s Niagara County 10-pointer topped the muzzleloader typical category with a score of 160 4⁄8.
Many other impressive trophies were entered as well, with western and central New York having a strong showing as usual. Among the big bucks scored were:
- Martin Hale’s Cayuga County gun kill, the top typical from that county, a 12-pointer netting 159 4⁄8.
- Cayuga County also produced a 145 5⁄8 13-pointer for Keith Schlegel in the muzzleloader typical category.
- James Hodge displayed his heavy-beamed Livingston County 14-pointer, which netted 170 7⁄8 as a gun nontypical.
- Michael Miller took another Livingston County buck that carried 13 points and also has split brow tines. His buck had a net score of 142 4⁄8 typical.
- Jason McDonald’s huge 179 4⁄8 12-pointer was the top gun nontypical for Cortland County.
- Thomas Bixby downed Chautauqua County’s No. 1 gun typical of the year, measuring 150 0⁄8 as a typical 11-pointer.
- In Onondaga County, Bob Knapp had the top gun-killed typical. His heavy 11-pointer scored 153 7⁄8.
- Jodi Wilczak entered a unique, palmated Wyoming County 10-pointer that tallied 153 4⁄8.
- Top honors for Allegany County gun kills went to Raymond Houtz. His 10-point buck scored 151 6⁄8 typical.
- In Oswego County, James Hall’s 154 4⁄8 12-pointer was the county’s top gun typical for the year.
- Dave Edwards displayed his award-winning 2010 Cortland County 16-point, which netted 182 0⁄8 and was the top typical taken by gun in 2010.
Archers accounted for many impressive racks as well. Jeff Henry arrowed a Madison County 12-pointer that went 160 3⁄8 in the archery nontypical category. Paul Carlson bow-killed a nontypical 19-pointer in Cortland County that netted 153 5⁄8. Also from Cortland County, Joseph Larkin registered a 148 5⁄8-inch 15-point archery typical. Fred J. Whatman II brought in yet another Cortland County buck that carried 10 points and netted 150 3⁄8 typical.
Oswego County had two impressive typicals as well. Martin Warner’s big 8-pointer scored 145 4⁄8, while Darrell Baker’s 8-point scored 142 6⁄8.
Another impressive 8-pointer came out of Cayuga County, this one falling to Gary Nickerson and scoring 141 5⁄8. Cayuga County also gave up a 148 2⁄8-inch 11-pointer to Dale Snover.