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Thread: SE AK Myth Busters

  1. #1

    Default SE AK Myth Busters

    1."Thalt shalt only take head or neck shots on big game" (the normal vital heart/lung shot......... bad!)

    2.Head and neck shots are either a clean kill or miss.

    Actually, some people dont show flexibility on shot placement and push it on others new to the sport.I am not picking at all hunters that primarality choose this area of shot placement.
    I do think its foolish to only teach this head/neck dogma to young adventures newbies because they will often take this rule seriously on all shots that merit a larger target. I have seen the wounded animals to prove it.

    Shouldn't shot placement be a case by case basis based on range, abilities,environment situation ect.?

  2. #2
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    Headshots all the way unless I am worried about antlers....

    Was just raised that way.....:P

    OR

    If its a long shot....most of the time they are fairly close...

  3. #3
    Member akfishfool's Avatar
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    I will often take the base of the skull kill shot, but I have no problem with a boiler room shot. I do have a problem with the spray and pray ,out of range, out of skill level, just hit it somewhere and then shoot some more if you hit it type shooting. ( though I might make an exception for a wolf in a intensive management area)
    60% of men don't know what they have until they lose it
    15% aren't sure but figure it's better than nothing
    25% know exactly what they have and would do anything to lose it or give it to someone else

  4. #4
    Member 8x57 Mauser's Avatar
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    We teach the kids in the middle schools and everybody in hunter ed:
    The heart-lung area is the responsible target.

    Largest kill zone. Biggest margin of safety against wounding.

  5. #5
    Supporting Member Amigo Will's Avatar
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    Not a S.E. thing for sure. We shoot at the eyes as thats what shows in the spotlight
    Now left only to be a turd in the forrest and the circle will be complete.Use me as I have used you

  6. #6
    Moderator kingfisherktn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Amigo Will View Post
    Not a S.E. thing for sure. We shoot at the eyes as thats what shows in the spotlight
    Isn't that a POW modus operandi?

  7. #7

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    Yeah i definately think range and skill are the two important factors. The problem i saw was how a couple of new hunters nipped a juggler or hit the low jaw and the deer was a nasty chase or just got away. I told them that they should keep there head shots under 100 yards if shooting off hand.They wont listen though That said i pretty much Make head and neck shots these days too. Nonetheless a long shot or a big rack merits the cavity.

  8. #8
    Member icb12's Avatar
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    I like heart meat too much.

    Head shots mucho preferred.

  9. #9
    Forum Admin Brian M's Avatar
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    I've never taken a head shot at an unwounded animal. I've finished a couple of wounded animals off with shots behind the ears, but never something still standing. I always aim for the lungs, and I teach new hunters to do the same. I feel that I'm a pretty decent shot and could probably make the head/neck shots most of the time, but I like to take the highest odds shot possible, both out of respect for the animal and desire to put meat on the table. The lungs offer the highest odds target the vast majority of the time, so that's where I aim.

    (If I hunted the thick timber of Southeast, perhaps my perspective would change. The above is based upon Southcentral and Interior hunting, largely in the alpine.)

  10. #10

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    I believe in lung shots if you can get both so much the better. I've never lost an animal that had his lungs punched.
    Chuck

  11. #11

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    I'm not a big fan of head/neck shots, unless that is the only shot available. I usually aim for lungs, especially if I'm launching a frangible bullet. I usually hunt with Barnes X bullets though, as broadside shots rarely present themselves to me. It's nice to be able to put an X through the shoulder/lungs on a quartering shot and not loose as much meat as you would with cup and core bullet or bonded bullet.

  12. #12
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    I've seen way too many failed head shots, its not a target I will shoot for or recomend. Base of neck shots are better but still no comparison with a heart/lung shot. I feel I'm a pretty good shot too but something the size of an orange or grapefruit moving around with lots of skull/nose surrounding it. Nothing is worse than finding an animal running around blind after taking a shot thru the front of the nose or starving to death days later with no lower jaw.


  13. #13
    Moderator LuJon's Avatar
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    I have looked at dozens of CT scans of head shots and though the mammal under observation has a larger brain than most of the ones in question it did present some interesting things to me. One is the idea that the bullet itself has to hit the brain isn't really that accurate. When a bullet hits skull the skull itself turns into projectiles. I have seen injuries where the bullet was stopped by armor but still hit with such force that it fractured the skull and drove it's shards into the brain. While I will agree that hitting the jaw or nose is a good way to injure an animal and it could possibly escape, for the most part there is a lot of pretty fatal stuff in the head/neck region. As a person that has spent a great deal of time in a place where bullet wounds are common I can say absolutely the last place I want to be shot is in the head or neck.

    I think it boils down to confidence in your weapon and ability. If I had a broadside shot I would most likely shoot for the heart/lungs. If I had a good head shot and nothing else at a range I feel comfortable with then I can't say that I wouldn't take it. I know that my last year back home I had a bull at 20 yards staring at me and if he would have had 1 more brow tine I would have shot him dead between the eyes. It was a failing light thick timber situation akin to the pics and video I have seen of SE AK. I have no doubt that It would have been a very dead moose. My wife shot her first moose in the high neck at 60 yards, I have never seen anything die as fast. I was looking through my rifle scope ready to back her up and the thing just vanished at the sound of her gunshot. I raised my head from the scope and saw 4 legs up in the air. <girn>

  14. #14
    Member AlaskaTrueAdventure's Avatar
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    Double lung-heart cavity shots preferred, always.
    This talk of preferred head-shots is basically irresponsible. The high potential of wounding and loss of game is terrible with head shots under most hunting conditions. While some of you expert marksmen might be able to consistently hit a baseball size target, most everybody would be better off shooting at a football or basketball size chest cavity target under common hunting conditions.
    It is this type of silly talk and behavior that led to the substandard black bear recover rate which resulted in the new and recent regulation changes for south-east AK black bears.

    Sincerely,
    Dennis

  15. #15
    Member skybust's Avatar
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    heart and lung for me but that just me

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    Those SE deer are smaller than a moose and it takes a lot of them to equal a moose. Why waste meat if you can help it? If it is in my range and I am confident in the shot I would take a head shot.

  17. #17
    Member willphish4food's Avatar
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    Shoot 'em in a spot where you know you will connect lethally. A headshot bear drops on the spot, with no lost meat and brush trailing. At 20 yards from a seated rest, over bait, a headshot should be a sure thing. It has been for me.

  18. #18
    Forum Admin Brian M's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by buckmark View Post
    Why waste meat if you can help it? If it is in my range and I am confident in the shot I would take a head shot.
    A lung shot doesn't waste any meat. If you put the bullet behind the front quarters, all you're losing is 1/3 of two individual ribs.

  19. #19
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    Come on Dennis, are you saying that all "unguided non-residents" are coming to Alaska and head shooting their animals? If so they are losing them at a higher rate than resident or local folks who also head shoot? Is anyone actually headshooting bears? Doubt it. As for deer most locals here do head/neck shoot them since they are usually close. Personally I lung shoot everything I can unless it is facing me and close then head/neck it is. Haven't lost or wounded one. Again I prefer lungs.

    Side note, do YOU have the wounding loss data for SE bears and where it came from? Been excited to see it.
    Mike
    www.coffmancoveak.com
    Prince of Wales Island

  20. #20
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    Shoot to your ability.

    I make head/neck shots regular like, but when they are a bit far, I move to the chest.

    I can make the shot, so I do, when in doubt I opt for the larger target, even though it destroys the meat Im after by blowing through/bruising blood through the layers of meat.

    I am a meat hunter, and I care nothing for antlers and such, and blowing them off with the brains dont bug me at all, 'cause I throw em with the guts most times anyway.

    I teach that to the kids because I taught them to shoot right.

    I agree, it is a "case by case" call, each and every shot. Its your shot, you call it, you take it.
    If you can't Kill it with a 30-06, you should Hide.

    "Dam it all", The Beaver told me.....

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