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Good hit, no recovery

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Old 11-16-2005, 12:05 PM
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Default Good hit, no recovery

I was out last weekend with a couple hunting buddies. One of them shot a 6-pointer and here's what happened:

The deer was 10 yards out from his stand- he was in a 15ft. ladder stand. He says he shot when the deer was standing broadside, and saw the arrow hit right where he was aiming- right behind the shoulder, halfway up. The deer trotted off and stood for a minute or two, looking wobbly like it would fall down. It then slowly walked towards the marsh. One of the other hunters in a stand nearby watched it walking towards the marsh and said it looked like it fell down. 20 minutes later, my friend recovers his arrow- a complete pass-through. The arrow and fletching were covered with blood (bright red w/bubbles in it). After talking to the other hunter (who thought he saw it go down), they decided it was probably down and dead and went to recover it. As they walked towards the area it was in, the deer got up and took off. It walked down the township road where another member of our hunting party who was still in his stand saw it enter another swamp/cattail area. The 3 of them proceeded to track it into the swamp. There was a good blood trail virtually the whole way. (I joined them at this point) It was getting dark and we had lanterns and flashlights, but still had no trouble following the trail. The blood looked like lung blood- bright reddish-pink with bubbles in it. We tracked it for almost1 hour in which the deer travelled a distance of 600-700 yards! The other thing is, apart from the initial time it had bedded down, the deer did not bed down at all after this- it was moving the whole time. We eventually lost the trail and never did recover the deer. My hunting buddy was really distraught about the whole thing. He was shooting a 60lb bow w/ a Thunderhead 100 grain.

First of all, it was a lesson to me to ALWAYS wait and give a deer sufficient time to expire, unless you are 100% sure that it is dead- i.e. clearly seeing it collapse and watch it lying on the ground for a period of time.

I wanted everyone's opinion on what could have happened. It obviously was not a double-lung hit- I've never seen a double-lung hit deer run more than 70 yards. It's probable that even though the shot looked perfect, that it only hit 1 lung. The blood trail certainly looked like a lung had been puntcured. If that was the case, is it possible for a deer to travel 700+ yards after a 1 lung hit??? I've never seen that, and never even heard of that before. I've heard of 1-lunged animals travelling 400-500 yards, and have personally tracked a couple that went 200+ yards, but nothing that even comes close to the distance this deer covered. I'd love to hear your opinions....

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Old 11-16-2005, 12:13 PM
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Default RE: Good hit, no recovery

It is pretty obvious what happened. The shot was made, probably a descent shot. You's never waited long enough. You kicked him up. He is probably 2 counties away. He will die. And the coyotes will have a feast, all because you's didn't wait it out. Go out there and look more. Circle around where you lost blood, and look towards water.
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Old 11-16-2005, 12:13 PM
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Default RE: Good hit, no recovery

If that was the case, is it possible for a deer to travel 700+ yards after a 1 lung hit???
I've never had it happen but I've sure read about it a lot in the last couple years.
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Old 11-16-2005, 12:15 PM
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Default RE: Good hit, no recovery

I helped track a deer this weekend for 2 miles and it looks like the arrow knicked a lung. After about 1.5 miles the blood was wet and plentiful and it looked like the deer had not expired and was being pushed. The guys never found it. Waiting a few hours will never hurt unless coyotes or something get into it. It sucks not find a deer like that. I think pushing deer is the biggest mistake people make.
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Old 11-16-2005, 12:18 PM
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Default RE: Good hit, no recovery

If that was the case, is it possible for a deer to travel 700+ yards after a 1 lung hit???
Sure can especially if pushed. Some believe (including myself) that it can survive a one-lung hit. But IMO, you did the right thing by getting on it. About your only chance of recovery with a single lung (nothing else hit) is to have the deer bleed out. I'd really search hard around the last point you had blood. It could have ran out, and beded nearby.


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Old 11-16-2005, 12:21 PM
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Default RE: Good hit, no recovery

arrow hit right where he was aiming- right behind the shoulder, halfway up.
My guess is the arrow caught the first lung, I like to be above the 1/2 mark on a deer from a tree. 15 ft is low, but being 10 yds away he might have been close enough to miss the second lung. Do to the angle, but there is wealth of information on this site on what to do after the shot.
Maybe we can get this site to hold an online seminar on what to do after the shot. Setup different shots and what the hunter should do. Kinda like a game, but I think it should be more serious then game status. Deer hit in this location, show a video of a deer running off hit in the location. Then let the hunter decide what to do next.

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Old 11-16-2005, 01:11 PM
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Default RE: Good hit, no recovery

Some believe (including myself) that it can survive a one-lung hit.

I have read that this statement is true.
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Old 11-16-2005, 05:11 PM
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Default RE: Good hit, no recovery

My friends dad shot a doe straight down and only hit one lung. It went like 100yds and dropped.When he gutted it it had the lung he shot punctured, but no other lung. The deer had obviously been shot one lung and lived. If i'm correct he said it might have been shrivled up or not there, either way the deer lived on one lung.
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Old 11-16-2005, 07:06 PM
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Default RE: Good hit, no recovery

Deer are very resilient animals and can easily survive with only one lung, I've heard several places that a deer can survive after losing up to 1/3 of its blood supply(Idon't know how true that is)
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Old 11-16-2005, 07:23 PM
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Default RE: Good hit, no recovery

Thanks for all the replies. I'm sure the deer is dead, but my friendnever was able to recover it. Let this be a reminder to everyone- WAIT!!! Waiting an hour or two can mean the difference between recovering a deer and losing it. Thanks for the replies.

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