Crossbow Hunting

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Post by roadrunner » Tue Nov 18, 2008 9:09 am

hey guys;
a friend of mine asked me what percentage of arrowed deer were never recovered. i thought this would be the best place to get that info :)

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Post by maple » Tue Nov 18, 2008 9:42 am

I can only speak for myself, but if you want to collect the stats that would be an excellent bit of information to have.

Out of 28 deer, I have been unable to find two. One, I think, was picked up by someone else before I could find it, so that doesn't really count. The other I looked for for two days with no trace. No blood. Nothing. Dead or alive I don't know.

On the other hand, I have shot two deer that took me two days of hard searching to finally recover.


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Post by Boo » Tue Nov 18, 2008 9:45 am

Just playing devil's advocate so please don't shoot the messenger. Does anyone think this is a good thing to display?
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Post by Galgo » Tue Nov 18, 2008 9:57 am

So far I am 4 for 4 recovered

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Post by roadrunner » Tue Nov 18, 2008 10:05 am

your probably right boo it was just a question i had no answer for :oops:

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Post by ComfyBear » Tue Nov 18, 2008 10:29 am

Once deer are skinned, it's kind of hard to "recover"
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Post by huntman » Tue Nov 18, 2008 10:41 am

Boo wrote:Just playing devil's advocate so please don't shoot the messenger. Does anyone think this is a good thing to display?
I agree 100% perhaps this thread should be removed by a moderator>

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Post by wabi » Tue Nov 18, 2008 11:04 am

I would agree it's bad PR to discuss deer not recovered, but I also think it's important to "preach to the choir" as far as ethical shots and putting forth 100% efforets to recover ALL game shot.
I believe most archery hunters as a group, understand the limitations of our choice in equipment and make every effort to limit our shots to those where we are certain of a quick kill and short recovery. Still, there are so many things that can go wrong there is always going to be the possibility of a poor hit or lost blood trail. We must weight the possibility of loosing game against our desire to harvest that game when we make our decision to hunt with archery equipment. In my years of hunting deer I have lost one to a mechanical broadhead malfunction (opened in flight and went off course), but I was able to confirm the deer wasn't hit fatally and did survive. I lost one other to an arrow deflected by brush and hit a non-lethal area (high back muscle). I spent 2 days searching and watched the area for signs of scavenger activity for a week without finding anything to indicate it did not survive. This is a part of archery hunting! It's not something we want to happen, but we had better think of the possibility before we launch an arrow!
On the positive side, there is a far lesser chance of accidents associated with stray projectiles or unseen targets with the arrows short range, so I believe archery seasons are a very important part of the overall game management plan. In many areas archery is the only safe option available, and it is my personal opinion that a deer lost to a bad hit with an arrow is no more wasteful than one killed by a car or truck on the highway, and probably less so as many of those killed on the highway end up in a landfill where those lost in hunting usually feed the scavengers.
In the overall picture of nature I'm sure a lot more die of "natural" causes (starvation, disease, predators, etc.) than are lost to archery hunting failures.

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Post by whitetailmad » Tue Nov 18, 2008 4:21 pm

Lost animal are a fact of hunting. We can pretend that it doesn't happen but it does. I my self have not lost a deer but I have had 2 friends that have. Weather you hunt with a bow or a gun it can and will happen.

The news as of late of hunter being shot by other hunters is a hard pill to swallow for me. Guys be sure of your target and what is beyond that target. If anything is bad PR being unsure of your target and pulling the trigger will kill the hunting sport we all love.

My friends deer camp was rip apart. When a guy in there group heard a deer in thick cover an shot only to find it was a dog from there own camp.

News out of NY state this morning 23 year old shot by a hunting partner.

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Post by Pydpiper » Tue Nov 18, 2008 5:21 pm

Losing an animal sucks, but it does happen. I think as long as a person puts all their effort in to a recovery it is an ethical topic.
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Post by rickyp » Tue Nov 18, 2008 6:19 pm

I will say 100% of shot deer are found.

They may not all be found by the hunter that shot them but they will be found by someone or something.

In nature nothing is wasted if a hunter doesn't find a deer after it is shot that deer will be found by scavengers and eaten.

This past early M.L. season I shot a doe opening morning but as hard as I looked I couldn't find her. a week latter I saw several buzzards flying over the area I shot her. then a few days latter I smelled her and was able to locate what was left 3/4 of her was gone and bugs where busy eating what was left.

IT is getting so that predators are learning to listen for gunshots and then go looking for the easy meal.

As much as we do not like to admit it but loosing an animal is part of hunting just like missing

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Post by VixChix » Tue Nov 18, 2008 7:05 pm

For those who think that lost animals suffer needlessly, I suggest that they give some thought to how animals die without human interference. Here`s a link to start them off: ... tegoryID=0
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Post by sumner4991 » Tue Nov 18, 2008 7:17 pm

I'll bet it's a little higher than you think. Mainly because everyone is afraid to discuss the issue.

It could actually be higher for rifle/shotgun hunters, if truth be told.

It's almost impossible to get real numbers. I had thought about including the "lost deer" in the broadhead data. However, I knew it would be really hard to get that information. Not many people will even admit to losing one.

It's about like belonging to the dry fire club. You are either a member or you are likely to become one. There are guys still in the dry fire closet. :wink:
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Post by MrBigSticks » Tue Nov 18, 2008 11:55 pm

i agree with sumne ive lost more deer over my 30 yrs of hunting with and gun than ever archery. In fact i track them less distance with a excal than a gun usually.
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Post by rickyp » Wed Nov 19, 2008 8:55 am

Today, I got in my stand late and I ended up seeing 5 deer. 4 does that where on a mission and stayed just out of range and didn't slow down the 5 th was a very nice buck he came from behind me looking for something. he got in to about 20 yards this happened quickly and I barley had time to get my bow into shooting position. When I took the shot I misjudged the distance and used my middle line inst id of the top line.
When I shot the buck he took off running but never indicated a hit. I got down and found the arrow. It had a single brown hair in between the vane and shaft. not a single drop of blood, fat or tissue. I then cleared the mud and found a few more hairs stuck in the blade of the B.H. blade that was in line with the vane. All indications showed I shot over his back and gave him a little hair cut.

I still searched over an hour for the deer or at least a sign of a good hit but nothing was found.

The point of this is, Not all deer that are shot are fataley wounded and will never be recovered and just go on about it's life with little more then a lesson.

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