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Biggest Buck Ever Shot!

by Gordon Whittington   |  September 22nd, 2010 87

The mount of this famous whitetail is now part of the "King of Bucks" collection, which is in the Wonders of Wildlife display at the American National Fish & Wildlife Museum in Springfield, Missouri. Mount photo by Chris Irwin, Bass Pro Shops

The story of the top whitetail ever shot is as great as the deer.


When 15-year-old Tony Lovstuen pulled the trigger of his muzzleloader on the afternoon of Sept. 29, 2003, he ended the reign of a buck that already was world famous. The Iowa non-typical had become known to the hunting world through Ron Willmore and Brian Lindberg’s article in the Feb. 2002 issue of North American Whitetail magazine, in which trail camera photos and shed antlers of the then-living buck were shown. The magazine dubbed the deer “Iowa’s Walking World Record,” and the name was fitting. With a potential score of nearly 300 inches on the Boone and Crockett system, the Monroe County giant would indeed have been a world record if taken with either a bow or muzzleloader.


Tony’s dad, Doug Lovstuen, grazed the buck’s neck during the 2001 gun season, and the next summer, trail camera shots showed that the right antler was stunted. Before long, that side of the rack actually fell off. But by the summer of 2003 the deer’s rack was bigger than ever, as confirmed by more trail camera photos. Doug and his cousins, Steve Angran and Mark Murphy, decided it was time to pool their efforts to hunt the animal, which spent most of his time on their family’s land.


As the mount photo shows, the buck did a lot of growing even after this live photo was taken in mid-summer. Photo courtesy of Mark Murphy

By then, plenty of other hunters in the area were also looking to make whitetail history. Fearful that the deer would be shot by a neighboring hunter or poacher, get hit by a vehicle or break an antler while rubbing, the family recruited Doug’s son, Tony, to pursue him during September’s special youth season. This early season allows a youth accompanied by an adult to hunt deer with a bow, shotgun or muzzleloader prior to the regular archery season.


On Sept. 29, Tony accompanied Doug and Mark to a ground blind in one of the buck’s favorite areas. That evening a small buck stepped out, followed by the one they wanted. Tony’s 70-yard shot hit the buck in the midsection, and he was recovered the next day.


The 38-point rack received a “green” B&C score of 322 4/8 — far above the existing hunter-taken world record of 295 6/8 — and soon the hunting world was abuzz with the news. The Jan. and Feb. 2004 issues of North American Whitetail had the first photos and details of the hunt, bringing the remarkable story full circle. Although a panel of measurers later reduced the Lovstuen buck’s final score to 307 5/8, that was still enough to make him the “world’s biggest hunter-taken whitetail.” That designation and the events surrounding the deer’s life make him a trophy for the ages.


  • brandon

    what is it a farm raised deer. Get out and actually hunt. The deer that are raised on farms are pretty much dogs. If you actually get out and do some real huntin I bet you don't kill a single deer.

    • andy

      you should take an IQ test before ever posting on the web…

    • kyle

      they dont count farm raised deer in record books and in the article it says its free range

    • Kent

      brandon: are you for rill and if so i will take you hunting any time.
      you just have to run fast so i can lead you . LOL U SUCK…

    • kirstie

      exactly it depends on where u r going and what u do. it takes time and a lot of patience…. but it is luck of the draw so u either c a deer and shoot it or u don't c one

    • carter

      When u kill a gigantic buck like that then u can shut up

    • Emily

      Actually I went out to go deer hunting at my dads deer camp and shot 2 deer!!!! I am a girl in 4th grade and almost 10.

    • Emily.a

      What's your last name Brandon? Is it Lang? If so I new you in second grade! Emily Akerman is my name.

    • clayton

      yeah I a hunter and i 12 and i have seen 4 monsters this year in Sept we had a16 teen point that scored over 220 inches a man killed him on the first day of rifle. a buck does not get that big buy living on a farm hes just that smart.

  • Randy

    Farm raised deer are genetically ID'd and are not allowed to be entered into the B&c record books.




    boy i shore wish i could get a big buck like that.thats a BIG BOY!!!

    • bob

      Me 2!!

  • jack dunn

    i believe its a fake

    • Rosco

      I agree too

    • Emily.a

      How do you now it's fake it could be real

    • Jack

      Obviously its real u sack of suck

  • logan

    awesome buck hope it was'nt raised on a farm the let out of the fence to be hunted.

    • kik

      people read this SHUT YOUR MOUTH

    • Emily.A

      I hope not

  • luke

    them are not the biggest bucks ever killed

  • Gink

    If anyone of you people knew/know Tony you would know that he is an avid hunter and that this buck is 100% legit…

    • blain celestine


  • shelby

    wow nice buck how much did it wiegh?

  • shelby

    dude awesome buck man… how much did it wiegh?

  • Levi

    Thats not a fake! Look up the state record for iowa and I'll bet you find this kids name. I don't know the kid or even the area in Iowa where they hunt, but being an avid deer hunter from Iowa I have heard this story many times before ever reading what was written. Its just another great IOWA buck!

  • blocker

    it is a great buck and anybody would be lucky and very happy to harvest this deer and there is no reason to cuss so mutch

  • austin swaw

    that thing is small i killed one thats 200 times bigger than that one i would let that thing walk whats the matter with u killing somem that small get that thru ur head!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • Rodney Bell

      Stop lying to ur self

    • Emily.A

      You should get something through your head you should be thankful you even shot something that isn't that small it's pretty big!

      • Emily.A

        To Austen swaw

  • Joe

    Especially you Clayton, using proper grammar and spelling does not make you any more intelligent than any of these other losers.

  • Rodney Bel

    I know Tony that Deer is real but I have seen a bigger one at Provadance Canyon in

  • Rodney Bell

    Ant that the truth

    • Rodney Bell

      Dont hate

  • Jesse

    WOW, how about congradulations to this young hunter who probaly harvested one of the biggest whitetails of all time. My hats off to you litle man.With our sport needing new and younger hunters, this is a great time for the hunting world.Lets not lose focus on the things that matter!

  • ramon piers

    u guys are so stupid thats a huge buck and u guys just like running u moths

    • ramon piers


  • Cheesner

    Lot of jealous posters. Very nice buck.

  • jacob

    i think it the best one

  • Sidney

    what do you stupid idiots know.were you there when they shot it.yea thats right i didnt think so……get a grip with yourselfs.dont be haters cause you dont have a trophy buck..

    • Emily.A

      Please you are probably all those things you called us people!

    • Emily.A

      I bet you haven't got a trophy buck ether so shut up

  • Monroe

    No matter how big or small the beer is, we need to thank God every day just for the hunt.If we get it or not! I live in the south to, and im verry happy with the deer i've got. And trust me there nothing like this one! Call me what you won't who ever u are thats a #1 buck in my book no matter where it come from.

  • Travis

    That young man deserves a lot of credit. It is very hard to even get that close to a world class animal. Congratulations young man…..

  • Darek

    Congrats to the young hunter. Great way to get the buck you want by using the youth season. We need young hunters great job.

  • Joe

    At least new young hunters are enjoying the sport and getting in the woods.

  • Neil

    I read the original story of this hunt in Awesome Whitetails 4. At the end of the article they said the rack had been stolen. Did they recover it? If so, what is the story behind that?
    I am getting so sick of thieves and poachers.

  • mr. green

    awesome deer, has its own freaky style that want be topped easy. the same as the cursing used in some of these post. easy gentle men try to get your point acrosss without so many f words ha.ha.

  • levi

    dude a deer is a deer nomadder where it was raised

  • josh

    thats a monster what a fine buck in ohio theres monsters to be taken if you can put in the effort good things do happen

  • wyatt

    that is a nice buck nice job it is a nice buck how much did it weigh most of them are just jelous

  • country is my thing

    hey i am from montana i don't care what people think but that is a awsome buck he will remember that hunter for a life time.

  • Bob

    Cause I'm not an idoit!! That is a rule!!

  • Kolton

    Very nice buck!!! I'm already 14 and I haven't shot anything close to that size I hope my day will come!!!! Lucky!! Congrades

  • blink

    no wonder the big ones are safe 75% of u are idiots and the rest of u are usin common sense i do have an american hunter mag from the NRA with tony and the buck on the cover for all u skeptics i like the typicals better but he is an awesome buck

    • Emily.A

      They need to watch their language

  • kik

    what is your guyses problems learn to pell

    • fleep

      says the one the cant spell SPELL

  • kik

    watch your mouth or keep it shut……

  • hunter15

    yall need to get jesus in yalls lives an watch your mouths

    • Emily.A

      Agree I'm ten in fourth grade

  • HannahSantina

    Kudos to you, Clayton. I am with you in the fact that people need to learn to spell because they make us look uneducated and ridiculous. (: wise words you say, er type.

  • Cody

    hopefully i can shot one that big for opening gun

  • Joe

    That is a great Buck! Congratulations! ANYONE would be proud to shoot that big guy! Sorry but profanity is just a vulgar way of expressing yourself that is uncalled for. We need to be happy for others and they need to be happy for us. I wish you all the best of luck in your deer hunting and hope that you all get the deer of your dreams!

  • LEE

    well im a simple country boy from west virginia, ive hunted and fished since i was big enough to carry a gun. ive killed some nice bucks and caught several large fish. all ive got ot say is congrats to the kid that killed that monster buck. that is a trophy of a lifetime that all hunters dream of. keep your head up high kid, and glad to hear you are still an avid hunter!!!!



  • Austin

    Definantely a fake.

  • Tyler

    i hit a ten point on my fourwheeler….killed it on impact and i walked away unharmed, LUCKY AS HELL. No Lie.

    • Emily.a

      Watch your language!

  • Amy

    Iaafter reading these posts I feel rather unintelligent. It's as if I just spent an hour with a group of first graders. First, I want to clarify that Iowa is proud of its deer , typical or non. Second, I highly doubt this article about this buck in particular would draw a reputable magazine to publish an inaccurate story. The buck didnt make history being "fake" or being farm raised. Welcome to southern Iowa were the deer roam free.

  • Amy

    ^^Centerville, Ia
    After reading these posts I feel rather unintelligent. It's as if I just spent an hour with a group of first graders. First, I want to clarify that Iowa is proud of its deer , typical or non. Second, I highly doubt this article about this buck in particular would draw a reputable magazine to publish an inaccurate story. The buck didnt make history being "fake" or being farm raised. Welcome to southern Iowa where the deer roam free.–corrected my mobile errors*

    • Emily

      I think you should keep that to your self!

  • pete

    I never done no hunting or nothing on no deer but I shot a big tail squirrel with my Pappas old lead sling

    • Emily.A

      That is cool!

  • rode

    You need to hunt like a man in the wild instead on a farm come on i have killed a deer bigger than that on wideness and bodie in hill country!!!!!!!!!

  • Nick

    Idiots, this deer was not farm raised. Farm raised deer can't be entered into the record books and this deer was shot 20 miles from my home. Dumb arrogant fools..

    • Emily.A

      Watch your language! I'm almost 10. I can use language like that but their could be littler kids on here! I am in 4th grade!

  • Statesy

    Calm down bobby he should be proud of his MONSTER deer

  • robinya

    sweet deer gratz

  • Emily.A

    I don't hunt farm deer! I hunt in forest. Which their are no farm deer I am almost 10! I am in 4th grade.

  • Emily.A

    How about you! I think hunter15 is right

  • Emily.A

    Shut up you idiot

  • kerklynn england

    That deer is humongus I wish I could shoot a buck that big in my life time

  • john

    ive killed a few nice deer but nothin like that, i hope he gets ten more just as big or bigger! and for those who are giving this TEENAGER a hard time over this buck are just jealous and immature because you probably cant kill anything but does and spikes, maybe oneday when all of yall grow up and put the time into huntin that he did, you might kill somethin half this size.

  • bruce

    Santa’s deer are much bigger They talk and fly so what’s the big deal

  • Hunter Winch

    I was 10 when I got my 4 point deer

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