Illinois hunting and fishing

Shawneetown man bags monster Gallatin buck

November 16, 2010 at 05:53 PM

GALLATIN COUNTY — Tony Nelson of Shawneetown did not expect when he climbed his deer stand Nov. 2 he would be killing the deer of a lifetime before he climbed down.

He and friends in the Ohio River bottoms around Shawneetown were aware there was a monster buck in the area and Nelson had seen photos others had taken of it preseason.

Nelson was in a stand on a friend’s property when he first spotted the 22-point non-typical buck chasing a doe at about 7:30 a.m.

“It went underneath of me. The first time I missed him. Three minutes later he was back chasing the doe,” Nelson said.

The second shot was clean.

“I watched him go down,” Nelson said.

Nelson is submitting the deer for a state record, keeping it for the until a measurer from the Boone and Crockett Club—keeper of records of American big game animals—can inspect it. Nelson said that process could involve a 50-day wait.

Nelson said a measurer from the state has determined the deer has a gross score of 226 and a net score of 215 7/8.

Though Nelson’s deer marks the greatest achievement of his hunting career, the prize has been colored with controversy.

“You wouldn’t believe the drama I’ve been through the last few days. I’ve been accused of shooting at nighttime, slipping onto private property. I contacted the game warden and he verified everything I did was legal,” Nelson said.

Nelson suggests people who shoot a large trophy deer may want to attempt to contact Illinois Department of Natural Resources before moving it “to stop the rumors,” Nelson said.