How to Measure a Trophy

Peter Jones offers advice on how to measure Roe Buck Trophies and meets approved CIC Measurer Barry Martin.

How to Measure a Roe Buck Trophy

A couple of weeks ago I drove down to West Sussex to meet Barry Martin. Barry is an approved CIC measurer. Along with a half dozen other people in the UK, Barry is qualified to measure and certify trophies under the banner of the 'International Council for Game and Wildlife Conservation'.

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(CIC Measurer Barry Martin casts an expert eye over a Roe Buck Trophy).

As a professional Deer Stalker I reckon myself pretty handy at measuring trophies, however I am prepared to 'doff my cap' to people of Barry's experience, who, due to the sheer number of top trophies that they see each year, along with countless meetings to insure consistency in measuring practices, are absolutely at the top of their game.

As such I was keen to treat this trip as a training day and unbeknown to the poor unsuspecting Barry, was aiming to extract as much information from him as I could before well and truly outstaying my welcome!

The excuse for the visit was to take down two excellent Roe Buck trophies shot by a client of mine David Hinsley. David had shot both Roe Buck last summer one of which was from my ground in Hampshire and will linger in my mind as one of the most idyllic stalks, (right at the peak of the rut) that I have ever had the good fortune in which to participate.....I digress.

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(Above: D. Hinsleys medal class Roe Buck shot during the height of the Roe Rut with County Deer Stalking)

Both trophies were full skulls and clearly excellent specimens, weighing over 500 grams a piece. My hopes were high for a couple of medals and I had nailed my colours to the mast with regard to the one off my patch, by proclaiming to David that I suspected it was around 125 CIC points and therefore more than likely a Silver medal. My professional pride was at stake!!

Barry Martin is one of the most amiable and likable chaps you could ever hope to meet, and I am not just saying that because he proclaims judgement on my trophies! Sitting in his office, like a wide eyed child, I apprehensively watched him set to work.

Roe Buck Trophies are measured across 9 categories. 1) Length, 2) Weight, 3) Volume, 4) Inside Span, 5) Colour, 6) Pearling, 7) Coronets, 8) Tine Ends and 9) Regularity. With one final category for Penalty Points.

Each one of these categories attract a certain number of points that contribute to the overall score.

Bronze requires a score of 105 points, Silver 115 and Gold 130.

That said each category between 5 - 9 can only attract a maximum of between 2 and 4 points, and in total even with maximum scores awarded can only warrant a maximum of 19 points between them. They therefore act as handy additions to bump up the overall mark, but do not contribute largely to the final result.

By far and away the most important aspects of a Trophy Roe Buck head are the Weight and Volume. To give you some idea, on the head I was having measured from my ground, the volume and weight contributed 93.2 points to the overall score, whilst sections 5 - 9 (Colour, Pearling, Coronets, Time ends and regularity combined only totalled 12.

This leaves just one other category Length, which in terms of its value to the overall score is somewhat mid way in terms of importance. Basically with length, longer is better, however this should be in proportion to spread. On the skull in question the score achieved for length was 12.38 points.

So prizes to those of you who have already worked it out!! I am delighted to report that according to Barry's findings David's head scored 121.58 CIC points awarding him a good solid Silver Medal!!

So what can you learn from my ramblings? Well if it's anything like my other blogs perhaps not very much! Therefore let me try and consolidate it into something more usable.

The equations that are used to accurately measure a trophy are somewhat complex  and in recognising this my best advice to those of you who think they may have something special is to concentrate on weight. It is the combined weight of skull and antlers that is the most easily observable category on which to judge your trophy.

Firstly if you are considering having your trophy measured I would suggest that you don't cut it but simply remove the lower jaw. This in all likelihood will result in you scoring higher.

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(Two excellent Silver Medal Heads shot by D. Hinsley Summer 2012)

Once you have prepared your trophy you must wait 90 days for it to dry, at that point weigh it and use the following as a guide:

455grams - Bronze

510 grams - Silver

540 grams Gold.

(If your skull is cut deduct 90grams from the above weights). 

As I say this is only a guide, however in my experience it is a pretty accurate one, and should be sufficient to give you an excellent indication in determining if you have a medal class Roe Buck Trophy.  

As for David's two skulls well his other trophy also gained him a second Silver medal with an even higher 127.13 points. However that was shot with another pro stalker so let's speak no further on the matter!!

For a list of the CIC measurers follow this link: cic-measurers

For more on the CIC and its measuring system take a look at this article by Iain Watson Senior International CIC Trophy Judge: the-cic-and-it-s-trophy-measurement-system

Alternatively when should you shoot your trophy Roe Buck? Iain Watson offers some advice: when-to-shoot-that-trophy-roe-buck

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