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Thread: How about we talk about lost animals

  1. #1
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    Default How about we talk about lost animals

    How many bowhunters can admit to losing an animal due to a bad shot and they actually used one of their tags? I have seen a lot of shoot, find blood with no recovery and it "doesn't count" and it pisses me off. I hunt for food, not for fun and I use a gun. I don't feel like screwing around, a wounded un-recovered animal is a waste IMO. Not ragging on all bowhunters, I just want to know what you guys are thinking when the animal runs off and you don't recover it.

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    Fortunately, with over a dozen moose under my belt I've never lost one. I did have one I had to blood track the next morning because I stuck it too close to dark, it went into the thick stuff and did a circle around me. It bothered me the whole night playing it back in my mind of did I get a clean shot or not. I was sure I had a double-lung shot, but just kept second guessing myself. Wound up going back to the area the next morning and found him in less than 5 minutes. (Actually, to be perfectly honest, it was my wife who found it. Took me a long time for her to quit ribbing me that she was a better blood tracker...).
    If you do stick one in a sure kill zone you won't be looking at a critter going much further than a couple hundred feet, tops. Unfortunately, people often times let impatience, excitement, bad judgement and 'buck fever' get the best of them and they wind up taking shots they never should have. This is not something exclusive to archery, as I've found dead animals in the field that have been crippled, gut shot, went down in a bad area or were undersized that were taken with a firearm. It all comes down to ethics, and we've got people that ride both sides of that fence, regardless of what they're packing in the bush.

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    Bad shots are like ugly girlfriends when the beer wears off. You think to yourself "What in the **** did I do?", vow to never do it again, have bad dreams about it and then keep it to yourself for eternity. If you need to get it off your chest then tell your dog. He'll wag his tail no matter what. Memorializing it on a public forum holds no value.

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    I seriously doubt bowhunters wound and lose more animals than rifle hunters... there are bad apples in most every camp.

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    As the post above said bet more are lost to rifle hunters. Shooting beyond there capabilities, us bow hunters usually set a limit how far we shoot me it's 60yds others I hunt with its 50yds.

    Unit 13 bsing with a fella "yeah shot a big bull yesterday with my 340 weatherby he was about 500yds out I hit him we went and looked for him but couldn't find him" huh yeah buddy you are Carlos hathcock of moose hunting aren't you...

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    Quote Originally Posted by 323 View Post
    As the post above said bet more are lost to rifle hunters. Shooting beyond there capabilities, us bow hunters usually set a limit how far we shoot me it's 60yds others I hunt with its 50yds.

    Unit 13 bsing with a fella "yeah shot a big bull yesterday with my 340 weatherby he was about 500yds out I hit him we went and looked for him but couldn't find him" huh yeah buddy you are Carlos hathcock of moose hunting aren't you...
    Yup way too many seem to shoot bow or gun well beyond their limits with no respect for the animal...

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    Member Dirtofak's Avatar
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    All you can do is keep looking until you can't walk another foot, then start over. Can happen to anyone. Happened to me on a rifle hunt.

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    It's not a rifle hunter versus bowhunter arguement, it's a the lethality of the weapon issue.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Waidmannsheil View Post
    It's not a rifle hunter versus bowhunter arguement, it's a the lethality of the weapon issue.
    bad shot with a bow is just as is a bad shot with a gun....no matter the weapon..

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    Ok, would you rather be shot with a 450 Marlin wit a 400 grain Nosler Partition or a 400 grain arrow through the thigh at 50 yards?

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    either way Im wounded so doesnt matter.... its not a gun/bow thing in my mind its a responsibility thing...

    regardless of weapon choice we need to know our limits and not push them and that will greatly reduce the chances of the op original question..

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    Quote Originally Posted by Waidmannsheil View Post
    It's not a rifle hunter versus bowhunter arguement, it's a the lethality of the weapon issue.
    It's not about either argument. It's about poor choices leading to a bad shot. Poor tuning, poor practice and poor decision when to shoot and sometimes you do everything right but something you didn't count on happens. Same thing with gun hunters. That's why it's called hunting. If it was a sure thing then we would all be buying meat in the store. Bow, rifle, boat, ATV, tent, camper manufacturers.....etc would be out of business and this would be a cooking forum. It's just not productive to bring up anecdotal situations and then paint all hunters with a broad brush. This forum shouldn't be use for Hunter Anonymous. My opinion.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Waidmannsheil View Post
    Ok, would you rather be shot with a 450 Marlin wit a 400 grain Nosler Partition or a 400 grain arrow through the thigh at 50 yards?
    See what I mean? Now a weapon that has killed enemies and provided man with food for thousands of years is no longer lethal enough. Hey Aussie, look up RibTeK broadhead in your homeland and see what critters have been taken with them.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Boud'arc View Post
    See what I mean? Now a weapon that has killed enemies and provided man with food for thousands of years is no longer lethal enough. Hey Aussie, look up RibTeK broadhead in your homeland and see what critters have been taken with them.
    First I am not an Australian, I am from Sitka. This ****hole is not my homeland. Just where the US Gov sent me for my last military tour.

    2nd I don't have a problem with bowhunting, or muzzleloaders or pistols or rifles or spears. You have to be your own personal check valve in the field. If you aren't practiced with any weapon and you take shots, you shouldn't you will probably wound game.

    I shoot 1000 yard F-Class almost every weekend, I have a laser range finder and spend a lot of time on targets at very long range. That doesn't mean I would do it with a big game animal. I am pretty happy with 300 on the first shot. 600 yards is where people really fall apart on wind at long range.

    The same applies to bowhunting. I don't hunt with a traditional bow anymore, and I am not interested in compounds. I do crossbowhunt in Wyoming for elk most years with my family. People that think they can 100% put every arrow or bolt into an animal at 100 yards are full of ****. There are just too many factors that end up causing wounded/lost animals.

    That being said TV bowhunters are the worst. I can't count how many times I have seen Babe Winkleman, and a whole host of other idiots lose an animal on tv. My question to the hunting and fishing tv channels are " how stupid are you to air this ****?". All it does is make look bad.

    If I did shoot someone in the leg at 50 yards with a 450 Marlin the hydrostatic shock would destroy enough tissue that I doubt unless they were in a park across the street from the Mayo Clinic they would survive. An arrow would suck, but not as bad.

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    Member Burke's Avatar
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    I once made a bad hit on an antelope...it was in my range of confidence (27 yards) reasons for missing was a combination of factors. I watched it lay down before starting to move in for a follow up shot. Before I could get to him a rancher came along on a four wheeler and jumped him up. The rancher left and along came a group of does.the buck followed the does and I followed them for the rest of the day never getting a shot. (it was archery only or I would have used a rifle) I hunted all the next day for him and could not find the group...for nine days I tracked the group and had several encounters but never could get in range again. At one point I saw the same buck (identified by the dried blood on his shoulders) chasing a coyote away from the herd ( I think the coyote must have thought he was an easy meal since he smelled like blood) but obviously he wasn't hurt enough to succumb to the Wiley coyote since he was still around the next day. I was pretty sure he would survive...I notched my tag and ended my antelope hunt for the season.

    I agree with much of what is said above Regarding the choice of shots we make. However my experience with the wounded antelope demonstrates the point made by waidmannshell that an arrow can be less damaging than a bullet from a high powered rifle. It may not be that way every time, but i am convinced the antelope I shot was no more hurt than any one of us cutting our thumb...it hurts and bled but eventually healed without permanent harm.

    We all have a responsibility as hunters to stay within our limits...I for one could never consistantly match the limits of the gun or bow I shoot (meaning I know rifles have the capacity to shoot 1000 yards plus and bows easyily more than 100 yards yet i would not try shooting an animal at those ranges) that is why i try my best to keep archery shots under 50 yards and rifle shots under 200.

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    ANYONE shooting 100 yards with ANY bow at game is crazily irresponsible. That's just ridiculous. In my opinion around 50 yards should be about the maximum on game, just because of how much can happen in between release and impact with a 50-yard shot. Now that said, if I'm 20 yards or closer with my longbow and the situation's right, that animal is in awfully deep ****. THere's no question that bows are enormously lethal weapons if used properly. BUt yeah, you have to pick the right range. I think most of us are on the same page here. It comes down to personal responsibility, not so much weapon choice.

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    Default Be careful of guys "fishin"

    Looks like Fishinhank is living up to his pen name in that he appears to have wanted to start, and I'll be polite here, a "discussion" with a 9lb sledge hammer and a big wedge. If he was in fact "fishing" for a response, he certainly got it, then looks like he backed away from what he started.
    Be careful guys that we don't buy into the typical "them vs. us" arguments that tend to ensue when the hornets next gets poked. If a person, for instance, was advocating only for one method or the other, lets say firearms over archery, then it's easy for them to focus the discussion on only one aspect, in this case rifles and big game. I'd say if a guy wants to take a side, then he gets the whole side, that includes everything that goes bang.
    I'm wondering what other positive words of wisdom ole Hank has to offer, I'll be watching and waiting,

    ARR

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    I think it has already been covered by the responses. Seems like most people agree with me in that its up to the individual hunter to make the right call, and unfortunately sometimes that doesn't happen. I wasn't trying to rag on bowhunters as a group. It's the same with gun hunters, you will get both sides of the spectrum. I have just never shot an animal with a bow and not recovered it and I wanted to see how others felt when it happened to them. I would hope that most of them would man up and use their tag like they are supposed to instead of ignoring the fact that they wounded it and didn't recover it.

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    I just started shooting the bow this past spring, nothing fancy, a handme down Darton from my uncle. Got good enough that I'm confident upto 30yds and just took my first deer with it at 10. Know your limits, mine is 20 right now. Only anuimal I've lost was a black bear, hit him with my 300wm. No wind, no rain, well within my range, bullet hit exactly where I wanted it to from the looks of the tape, I just picked a wrong spot. Bad decision on placement, still don't know why I did that. Just know your limits, for me, if I can't get within 200yds with the rifle i shouldn;t be shooting, long glory bragging shots are for teh range and paper targets IMO.

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    Quote Originally Posted by FishinHank View Post
    How many bowhunters can admit to losing an animal due to a bad shot and they actually used one of their tags? I have seen a lot of shoot, find blood with no recovery and it "doesn't count" and it pisses me off. I hunt for food, not for fun and I use a gun. I don't feel like screwing around, a wounded un-recovered animal is a waste IMO. Not ragging on all bowhunters, I just want to know what you guys are thinking when the animal runs off and you don't recover it.
    "you guys" Whatever. I have come across many more unfollowed blood trails during rifle than bow seasons. So many rifle hunters feel that if it doesn't drop right there that they must not have hit it, and have few if no tracking skills. I've been bowhunting for 24 years. Once upon a time, I was a kid, and my dad was/is a poor shot....we spent lots of time on our hands and knees with a coleman lantern tracking and he taught me very well how to keep going when the blood runs out and to read the track to get an idea of what you have for a hit and how to properly respond. I was involved this year with a rifle wounded moose and as the only not colorblind and experienced tracker in the group I was put on it......500 yards and 3.5 hrs later in the pouring rain, I had the terrible feeling that one of my best tracking jobs ever was not going to be successful without some luck....luck didn't show up. We gave it lots of time and effort and did everything we could, but that guy never stopped, and we didn't luck upon him after circling the end of the trail. The RIFLE shooter felt terrible. He's an experienced guy and respectful and grateful hunter.....he was sick and we did what we could to console him....cuz nearly EVERYONE has been there.

    I wish I was one of you holy cow amazing super duper hunters that have never ever ever ever lost a hit animal......I wish, but I'm not. But, I can tell you this, I never walked away from a blood trail without doing everything I could. AND, have guided several folks to animals they would have never recovered without help from someone with the right experience and attitude.

    For all we know Hank, you could be the guy that says every animal he ever shot dropped right there......meaning you likely don't even know that some have walked away with a hole in them.....in that case your original post is even more ironic. I hope this is not the case but your adverserial tone to me denotes a touch of ignorance.

    If one wanted to truly reduce the number of wounded animals, I think we need to realize it's not about marksmanship really. It's about sight aquisition, knowing where to shoot, focusing on the shot. (and also how to track as I've smacked several animals dead to rights and got a real run for my money in recovery). Almost any idiot can hit a kill zone of even a blacktail at 100 yards with a rifle off the bench or a bow at 40 yards but that doesn't mean they can do it under pressure. My cousin shoots for a big bow company, has won national championships, but my dad and I have also been on the ground in the dark helping recover his gut shot animal cuz he got too excited. The man can put 5 arrows inside of a golfball at 50 yards but still got shook when an 8 pointer walks in.

    My blood trails got shorter, and my recovery rate near perfect once I got older and therefore had enough experience that I truly picked a spot, and focused on that instead of the whole animal and learned to put the safety back on or let down the string if the shot wasn't right. We all love hunting for the experience and excitement of pursuing animals, unfortunately that same excitement can lead to mistakes and bad judgement. Controlling that means much more than what weapon you use or if you can hit a round target in a controlled situation.

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