The Velvet Antler Bander™ is a simple, chemical-free system for providing analgesia and allowing humane velvet antler removal. Please read these instructions carefully before using the system. The system has been developed and refined following years of research and the instructions must be followed closely for it to work safely and successfully.
- KIT (Bander, Callicrate Cutter, Timer, Utility Knife, Safety Glasses), Saw, Needle Nose Pliers
- Everyone in the area should always wear safety glasses to avoid eye injury.
- Use a squeeze properly adjusted for the size and weight of the bull or stag.
- Ensure that the animals are not prevented from breathing or squeezed too tightly.
- Adequately restrain the head of the animal (using a halter, if necessary) to make application of the compression analgesia easier and safer.
STEP 1. PLACE THE BANDS AROUND THE PEDICLES
Loop a band around the base of each pedicle in a clockwise direction, inserting the free end of the band at least half an inch into the hole in the plastic strip. Place the bands so they lie on the forehead of the animal. The bands should remain to the front of the animal while ratcheting. Bands must be used on the pedicle only – not on the antler.
STEP 2. CONNECT A BAND TO THE SPOOL
1) Rotate spool on the bander so screw is facing the front.
2) Thread the plastic strip through ring on end of bander. Note: The aluminum clip should be seam side up.
3) Lay the strip on top of the spool, above the screw. Place thumb over end of strip.
4) Rotate spool until hole in the end of the strip comes into the screw.
5) Make sure the alumimum clip seats properly into the nose ring of the bander.
STEP 3. TIGHTEN THE BAND
Note: Ensure the tool and bands are kept to the front of the animal.
Tighten the compression band by using the ratchet handle on the bander to wind the plastic strip and the rubber band onto the drum. The aluminum clip will stay in the ring on the nose of the tool, while the rubber will pull through.
Tighten until the red line in the slot lines up with the two red lines on the shaft.
Note: This is the correct and safe pressure. Do not tighten any more than this. Over tightening reduces loop elasticity, causes breakage, and may harm the animal.
STEP 4. CRIMP THE BAND, REMOVE THE BANDER, BEGIN TIMING
Push the crimping handle fully down to compress the aluminum clip and lock the rubber band around the antler pedicle.
In one sweep, use the Callicrate Safety Cutter™ (included in the kit) to cut the rubber band close to the winding spool.
Begin timing at this point. This is easily achieved using the countdown timer set on 4 minutes.
Remove the remaining band from the spool.
STEP 5. REMOVE THE ANTLER
After 4 minutes, apply a light nick to the antler using your removal saw. If the bull or stag does not flinch, remove the antler with a sharp saw about ¾ to 1 inch (2 cm) above the coronet. If the animal flinches, wait 30 to 60 seconds before testing with the saw again.
STEP 6. REPEAT STEPS 2-5 ON THE SECOND ANTLER
Labeling and hanging up the first antler before proceeding to remove the second will usually allow the correct 4 minute wait for the second antler.
STEP 7. REMOVE THE BANDS
Important: Remove both compression bands before releasing the animal. After the antlers are both removed, grasp the aluminum band with needle nose pliers and twist it to expose the rubber band. Carefully cut towards the clip with the utility knife. Cut near the clip to avoid the pedicle. Usually a light nick to the rubber will suffice.