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Thread: boar vs sow - what are your ID tips

  1. #1
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    boar vs sow - what are your ID tips

    Obviously, it assumes the sow has no cubs around her.

    What do you look to distinguish between the two black bears. Especially between a mature sow and a mature boar.

    Thanks!

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  3. #2
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    Re: boar vs sow - what are your ID tips

    Im an ankle man. Boars have thick forelegs with no taper, sows have a tapered foreleg with dainty ankles.

  4. #3
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    Re: boar vs sow - what are your ID tips

    Forearms and ass.

  5. #4
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    Re: boar vs sow - what are your ID tips

    It’s all forearm and shoulder for me and every single one of the bears I’ve harvested has been a boar. Seems to work. and I’ve passed on lots of sows even some big ones.
    Proud member of the Second Nations community.

  6. #5
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    Re: boar vs sow - what are your ID tips

    Hips, shoulders, forearms, ankles... all the best indicators unless you catch a bear flashing it's junk around. Boars generally have a bit of a "Hercules" look up front. Actually named a boar that last year because he was an exaggerated example of that... massive up front and a bit of a tiny waist "in comparison" LOL

    Some behaviour indicators as well. Sows and immature boars tend to enter a feeding area cautiously, stick close to cover and remain fairly silent.

    Whenever I can hear a bear ploughing it's way through to the feeding area, snapping everything in the timber along the way and then walking out into the middle of the feeding area like it owns the place, that's going to be a boar 95% of the time.

    When I am in doubt, I pass. That really paid off for certain back in 2017 when after watching a sow hug close to cover in a feeding area for hours on consecutive night, it was only the second night I saw the cubs in the brush just inside the treeline and only saw them for a few seconds.

    I've taken a number of bears, but have passed on dozens based on all indicators or lack thereof described above and "my gut" (I know that sounds ridiculous, but it factors in) I have yet to shoot a sow. If I don't have enough time to judge, if I do have time and I'm not still not sure or if my gut tells me something is wrong, the bear walks. Probably missed out on a lot of boars (never actually missed out since I always get one eventually) being overly cautious. I just can't imagine shooting a sow (totally legal and fine) and then finding out there were some little ones (not so fine) ... I never want to be in that situation. That's how you end up on the 6 o'clock news. Full disclosure, I'm probably way overly cautious... sometimes it's a bug and sometimes it's a feature.
    Last edited by caddisguy; 05-19-2020 at 05:14 PM.

  7. #6
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    Re: boar vs sow - what are your ID tips

    The unmistakable Swagger walk. Really tiny ears that almost seem off the sides of their head. A belly that almost seems like its touching the ground. And a crease or line down the middle of their forehead because there's so much muscle on the skull
    "Mule deer all have four hooves and they poop, on average every three hours. Plop plaw pooty plop." Jelvis the Pelvis

  8. #7
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    Re: boar vs sow - what are your ID tips

    Quote Originally Posted by Harvest the Land View Post
    The unmistakable Swagger walk. Really tiny ears that almost seem off the sides of their head. A belly that almost seems like its touching the ground. And a crease or line down the middle of their forehead because there's so much muscle on the skull
    Yes! The Swagger!! That is another great one... walking as if their dingle berries are too big.

  9. #8
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    Re: boar vs sow - what are your ID tips

    You gotta sneak up and cradle his coogles in one hand. More than a handful and you got yourself a shooter. Also makes for very close shots.

  10. #9
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    Re: boar vs sow - what are your ID tips

    All good suggestions above. I found this guy's method useful:

    "Most articles and videos on bear judging first focus on the differences between male and female bears. I don’t find this to be a useful way of looking at things. It results in a lot of duplication and “wishy washy” metrics. [...] If you [...] judge bears on the “spectrum” I define below, you will rarely harvest a female bear."

    https://truehunts.com/field-judging-black-bear/


    a couple of interesting features:
    "A “torpedo shaped” bear is usually a sow. Small front-end vs larger rear, is almost always a sow. If at first glass of a bear from the broadside perspective you don’t know quickly which end is the front, it is likely you are looking at a boar. Mature boars carry mass from front to rear.If a bear’s hair “parts” between its shoulders it is typically a sow or small boar. Once a bear’s shoulders are wide enough to keep the hair standing it is either a very heavy sow or, most likely, a mature boar."
    Last edited by Mark-R; 05-20-2020 at 01:01 AM.

  11. #10
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    Re: boar vs sow - what are your ID tips

    https://vimeo.com/30511231

    Although is showing grizzlys the basics of age and sex is the same.
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