Role of the Doe
The doe carries 50% of the genetic material for antler development. In the deer pens, some does consistently produce small antlered offspring and some consistently produced large antlered offspring. When spike-antlered males were bred to "spike-antlered" females, the off spring were often spikes at 1 and 2 years of age with a few being spikes at 3. When females from forked-antlered sires were bred to fork-antlered males, the offspring were often large antlered.