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CB Percentage of Drops vs. Having to Track

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CB Percentage of Drops vs. Having to Track

Old 08-21-2010, 09:53 AM
Thread Starter
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: NE Texas
Posts: 79
Default CB Percentage of Drops vs. Having to Track

Based on responses I got with my initial post I needed to re-word some things. They made me feel as welcome as a raging case of herpes. FYI - I am not sticking to a rifle but appreciate the offer.

Lets try this again.

I am a newbie to crossbows - was curious how many deer you drop vs have to track? Up till this point all I have ever done is rifle hunt (never have bowhunted) and fully understand you arent going to drop deer with a CB like you do with a rifle. I dont have much experience at all tracking (never have had to do it on my deer but the very few times I have we were not successful so therefore I dont particularly enjoy it - rather be spending that time driving to the processor but realize that will be part of hunting with a CB and shot placement is critical). The least amount of tracking I have to do with good shot placement the better. I just want to have proper expectations with this new venture. Typically (ballpark) with a well placed double lung or heart shot, how far are your deer running?

I would also like to know what your preferred arrow and broadhead package is that you have had the most luck with dropping deer and/or causing the most damage to limit distance they run. I know that is opening up a can of worms (mechanical vs fixed, etc).


Last edited by Bonner1; 08-21-2010 at 06:19 PM. Reason: Responses since initail post
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Old 08-21-2010, 11:55 AM
Nontypical Buck
Join Date: Aug 2003
Location: Bessemer, MI
Posts: 1,719

Well, First of all, your gonna TRACK unless you spine the deer! Second of all, If you dont' like tracking, I suggest you stick with rifle hunting.. I personally LOVE TRACKING DEER... A crossbow hit is just like a compound/recurve hit. Arrow, broadhead, etc etc...
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Old 08-21-2010, 04:26 PM
Giant Nontypical
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Join Date: Feb 2003
Location: the woods of NJ.
Posts: 5,642

Save your $ on the bow and use it to buy rifle cartridges. On the bright side you won't be climbing up and down mountains and hills on a marginal shot. Remember to wait a half hour after the shot before tracking also so as not to add to your hike.
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Old 08-21-2010, 04:33 PM
Fork Horn
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: South Dakota
Posts: 157

Odds are, you won't be dropping a deer in its tracks. You WILL be tracking. The better your shot, the easier it will be to track.
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Old 08-22-2010, 03:47 AM
Nontypical Buck
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Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: Land of Rocks, Ozarks of Mo.
Posts: 3,038

Not many times have i dropped a deer in its tracks using a CB. Twice that i can remember, shot one facing me throught the throat patch the other was a shoulder blade shot. I don't recommend either of those shots to a beginner. No can of worms friend, Spitfire mech 100 gr is a very good BH. Slicktricks standard, mag or best razortrick. Almost all of my deer have fallen in sight of me, they can & do run after being hit. Good hit through ribs good sharp BH deer will be down with-in 75 yds or less. After the shot watch the deers travel direction lots of times i hear them running & falling to the ground
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Old 08-22-2010, 06:54 AM
Nontypical Buck
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Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: No.MN
Posts: 1,053

Rifles and crossbows kill in different ways. Bullets kll with massive shock and destruction to the major organ systems, often resulting in bang-flop kills. Arrows kill by causing hemorrhage, which takes time to affect. Deer shot through the central nervous system with an arrow often fall at the shot paralyzed (some still have to be shot again to kill); those hit in other vital places usually have to be tracked.
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Old 08-23-2010, 08:27 AM
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 16

Regardless of what weapon you use, tracking after the shot is a skill every hunter should strive to perfect. Like any other aspect of hunting, building and using this skill can add immensely to the satisfaction you receive from the sport. And of course, it's part of becoming an ethical sportsman. Based on what I've seen, tracking is perhaps the skill in most need of improvement in the average deer hunter. There's a sticky here that gives a great tracking overview:


I review this, and a couple other similar posts on other forums, before every deer season, and I've recovered a lot of deer, both mine and others. I've also lost a few. At this (late) stage of my hunting career, tracking has become a point of pride for me, and I will spend hours at it, sometimes over more than one day. Take your time, refuse to give up, and have FUN! Tracking after the shot is the ultimate treasure hunt!
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