Bear trophies are judged solely on the basis of skull measurements.
1. Length of skull Measurement.
A) The skull should be in tack with its lower jaw engaged into its pivoting sockets.
B) Using a flat surface, put the total skull with jaw bone frame as foundation on the flat surface (i.e. -table), and prepare measurements statistics for length.
C) Using 2 machinist square heads and scales (12 in.) preferred, engage scales in square heads and stand the scale heads on the flat surface and bring each scale (one at the back of the skull, neck bone joint) and one at the nose end of the skull, (between the K-9 teeth) and measure the distance between the two vertical scales. This measurement is the length of the skull.
2. Width of skull measurement.
A) Using both machinist square heads and scales, engage them and stand the square heads on the flat surface and bring each one to each side of the greatest protrusion of the jaw side of the skull and measure the distance between vertical scales.
3. Height of skull measurement.
A) Having the jawbone frame as foundation and on a flat surface, (i.e. table) bring each square head and scale to each side of the jaw bone and measure the highest point of contact when third scale is parallel to the table and each side of the vertical scale heads.
4. Tip to Tip (K-9) teeth measurement.
A) Remove lower jaw bone and invert skull so it lays on its top side to a flat surface.
B) Using machinist dividers locate each (K-9) tooth center at the end of the tooth and open dividers to encompass the spread of center of one tooth to center of adjacent tooth or simply use tape to measure between center point of K-9 teeth as shown below.
5. Compile all dimension to the the nearest sixteenth of an inch for a total score, and this becomes the quantitative total of the bear skull.
Score sheet and diagrams below can be used to score your bear.
All dimensions in inches.
LENGTH OF SKULL: LENGTH OF SKULL FROM FRONT TO BACK. _______
WIDTH: WIDTH OF SKULL FROM SIDE TO SIDE. _______
HEIGHT OF SKULL: HEIGHT OF SKULL BOTTOM TO TOP. _______
K-9 TEETH: DISTANCE FROM CENTER TO CENTER OF K-9 TEETH. _______
TOTAL: ADD ALL MEASUREMENTS TOGETHER FOR TOTAL. _______
Asst. Chief Judge Ray Phillips and Judge Dennis Nicely taking skull length measurement
Asst. Chief Judge Ray Phillips and Judge Dennis Nicely taking skull width measurement
Asst. Chief Judge Ray Phillips and Judge Dennis Nicely taking skull height measurement
Asst. Chief Judge Ray Phillips taking canine measurements
Virginia Black Bear Scoring System developed by the late George B. Johnson of The Virginia Peninsula Sportsmen's Association, Inc.