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buck fever/ animal fever

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buck fever/ animal fever

Old 10-16-2003, 09:53 AM
Thread Starter
Join Date: Feb 2003
Location: Eagle Mountain Lake, Texas
Posts: 113
Default buck fever/ animal fever

First a little background on me: I' m 37, grew up on a cotton farm on the south plains in Texas and have worked at a gun/archery shop off and on for about 15 years. I have been hunting with a rifles, pistols, and shotguns for most of my life.

I have been shooting 3D archery for the past two years. I have gotten over target panic (at least most of the time, with an occasional flare-up) and the pressure from competition doesn' t really bother me (at least no more than anyone else).

Last year was the first time I had ever been bowhunting. I did get a feral hog.

Now, this is my first deer hunting with a bow.

My question : " What do you do to get over buck/animal fever while on the stand." You know the adreneline dump you get when a game animal that you are hunting for walks out.
How do you settle your nerves and not have " target panic" and make a hasty shot?
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Old 10-16-2003, 09:59 AM
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 69
Default RE: buck fever/ animal fever

Usually I just freak out for a while as i watch them approaching. Basically, the longer i can see the deer, the worse my apprehension. Thats why i prefer to hunt thick stuff, then i dont have time to freak out, i just have to shoot or the deer is gone. Other than that, just enjoy the experience, even if you get so worked up you cant even draw your bow.
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Old 10-16-2003, 10:18 AM
Join Date: Feb 2003
Location: Logan Ia USA
Posts: 678
Default RE: buck fever/ animal fever

Experience is the only thing that gets you over it. You will just have to experience it and learn to control it. I have noticed that the more I practice with my weapon the less nervious I am when it is actually time to take the shot. Don' t look at the rack don' t think about getting the animal just think about making you shot.
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Old 10-16-2003, 10:30 AM
Boone & Crockett
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Location: Fredericksburg Virginia USA
Posts: 13,672
Default RE: buck fever/ animal fever

prof907 I was like you, I gun hunted for over 35 years before I got into bow hunting, I have killed some fine bucks (One monster) with gun, the fever only got me once and that was with the monster, but I recognized the symptoms and calmed myself down in time.

The first shot opportunity I had with a bow was on a calm doe, broadside at 20 yards, I thought I was fine, well the second I released I realized I had missed my anchor point! I blew it on a DOE!!!! Man I was hot at myself, I had sailed an arrow right over her back on a shot that should have been a chip shot.

Well I never even got to draw again that season, the next year my second opporunity came, doe, broadside at 22 yards, I made myself mentally do a checklist on it all and slowly squeezed the release, my first bow kill! What a rush.

A bow is totally different from a gun, there are so many things that have to be right before that arrow is going to hit where you want it to. My advice is to mentally double check everything before you even start to release.
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Old 10-16-2003, 11:08 AM
Join Date: Feb 2003
Location: Omaha Nebraska USA
Posts: 530
Default RE: buck fever/ animal fever

I think of what is going to happen after I shoot it.

I' m gonna have to track it, then field dress it, then drag it, then hang it, etc. and it will also be the end of my season.

Thinking of those items does two things for me: first, I' ve convinced myself that I' m going to make the shot by envisioning myself having already done it, and second, I' m thinking about things that are not as exciting as the shot which helps to calm me down.

I haven' t had a trophy buck walk in front of me yet, however, so I don' t know if this will work in that case or not.
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Old 10-16-2003, 11:51 AM
Join Date: Feb 2003
Location: Rural Valley PA USA
Posts: 444
Default RE: buck fever/ animal fever

I' ve seen deer every time I' ve been out this year and my heart gets pumping for every one. When I see a buck then it really pumps! What I' ve been doing is taking deep even breaths and telling myself to calm down and make sure you do everything right. This morning a nice 8-point came walking by. I got really nervous and then I became calm as I got into position and ready to draw. Turns out the buck never did get close enough and walked calmly away. I think I could have shot in haste and possibly hit him but I wanted to be sure of my shot. I don' t think that the excitement will ever go away. If it does then maybe we shouldn' t continue hunting.
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Old 10-16-2003, 11:56 AM
Fork Horn
Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: Cary, IL
Posts: 356
Default RE: buck fever/ animal fever

The only thing that really made any noticeable difference for me was experience. The first time I had a deer in front of me I was so nervous and cold that I couldn' t draw my bow back. Through the years you get over it and it' s like second nature.

Although I still get excited in anticipation of a shot, I try to concentrate more on keeping still, thinking about where the deer is headed, and picking a spot to shoot rather than if I' m going to get a shot or not. Every time I see a deer I tell myself I' m going to get a shot, instead of worrying about whether it' s going to happen or not. It' s the anticipation that kills ya.

Other than that, just try to take a few deep breaths and stay focused.
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Old 10-16-2003, 12:22 PM
Nontypical Buck
Join Date: Feb 2003
Location: Pittsburgh PA
Posts: 1,086
Default RE: buck fever/ animal fever

To be honest I' ve never gotten out of control exited when faced with seeing/shooting a deer. I hope I never do. THere were times when I first started out that AFTER a buck walked away without giving me a shot that I started shaking, but never while it was there.
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Old 10-16-2003, 12:41 PM
Join Date: Sep 2003
Posts: 368
Default RE: buck fever/ animal fever

When I was ten, I started hunting and I used to pass out whent the deer were coming. If they just showed up, I was fine but if I could see them for some time my dad would turn to see if I was ready and I' d be out like a light. Stop Laughing!!![:@]I' m 39 now and that first year was the only year that it happened but ever since then I get really excited as the deer approach. I concentrate on where I will get my shot and try to play it out in my head before the deer is in range. What is funny, I may be all jumpy as the deer approaches but as soon as I draw, I am completely calm. It is pretty cool.

I think this is the first time I ever told anyone about the passing out thing.

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Old 10-17-2003, 09:38 AM
Thread Starter
Join Date: Feb 2003
Location: Eagle Mountain Lake, Texas
Posts: 113
Default RE: buck fever/ animal fever

Thank you guys, like reading your stories.

I had a doe come out the first day in the stand. I got real excited, she walked up to about 10 yards from me. As she turned to walk behind a pine tree I drew and........she stopped behind the tree[:@]. You know you can only hold at full draw for sooooo long. After what seemed like three minutes waiting,I let down. After 5 more minuted she turned and walked about thirty yards with the tree between us. She turned broadside out in the clearing, but there was a branch right throught her midsection[:' (]. I wouldn' t chance the shotand she stayed around for about 45 minutes about 60 yards away but I couldn' t coax her back to me.

There will be another day, another deer, and the limb has been cut down. [>:]
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