Deer shed their antlers annually as a prelude to the regeneration, or re-growth, of new ones. The entire shedding process takes a mere two to three weeks to complete, and the re-growth phase takes place over the summer. Pedicles protruding from the skull, are a permanent fixture on the deer’s forehead, supporting the deer’s antlers and are the point from which the antlers annually break off. During the growth phase of the bony antlers, they are covered with a sensitive skin referred to as “velvet,” which is filled with blood vessels that feed the antler. Antler growth spans 2-4 months, after which time the velvet is no longer needed, and a ring, which effectively serves as a shutoff valve, forms at the base of the antlers and cuts off the blood supply to the velvet. As a result, the velvet withers, dries up, and falls off, often assisted by the deer, which rubs his antlers against tree bark.