The bulls and stags show more attitude now, some manes are growing and necks swelling

They're getting keener and more edgy.

More alert.

He's still in velvet and drop dead gorgeous.

Past years we've seen some interesting conflicts between bison and elk, including a "rock, scissors, paper" dominance among a bison bull who was afraid of the elk, but dominated the red deer; the red deer who relentlessly pursued the elk, but was afraid of the bison, and the elk who lorded his dominance over the bison and ran from the red deer.

When we skinned out the elk, we found two fairly recent rib fractures, so put it together that the smaller red deer had gotten in a lucky punch and earned the elk's fearful respect.  The red deer stag had a circle shaped rack, and that's probably why the bull elk got lucky with just a rib fracture instead of a deadly puncture.

He's not rubbed out yet, but he's starting to show that proud, rutting bull posture.

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