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Gordie    0

I have yet to get a deer with a bow and was wondering how long you should wait till you start tracking this wounded animal, I would expect its a little differnt than shooting one with a gun. I really haven't had to wait the deer I've shot with the gun usually go down within 10-30 yards of the shot and in plain veiw of my stand. thanks for the input.

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harvey lee    13
harvey lee

Thats a tough question for sure with every deer a different situation.I have had deer drop in 20-30 yards.After I shoot a deer with the bow I always watch for the direction the deer ran and listen very carefully for any sounds.After that I will look at my watch and wait for another 20 minutes unless I know that it dropped.

Once I am down the tree I will then look for first blood and my arrow.If I have good red blood and alot of it then usually I will wait for another 10 minutes and start walking very slowly and follow the blood trail.This is now where it can get tough.If the blood starts to get less with only a few drops here and there then I will go back to the truck or a mile back to the house and stay there for anywhere from 2-6 hours depending on the color of blood on my arrow and color of hair which will give me a pretty good idea of where I hit this deer.

You do not want to push the deer if it is only hit light as you may never find it.You want to let that deer bed down and bleed to death.If temps allow this all works fine.

If you have temps in the 60's and it will not get any cooler overnight then I would wait for a couple hours so the deer will bed down and go back with lights and continue looking.

I have had heart lung shot deer go 20 yards and then another will go 150 yards.You never know until you find the deer.

If you do a search on the internet for tracking deer you will find information to learn how to read the blood and hair on your arrow to decide where you hit the deer.This will really help in deciding how long you will wait.Its a learning game and you still get suprised at times how far or how far not they will travel.

It is good to have a watch with as time flies when you are waiting to start tracking that trophy and you do not want to push that deer.When you start to track the deer and you think you are going slow go slower.

A trick that I was taught is to always have some toilet paper with and every time you have next to no blood hang a piece in a tree or lower branch.This helps to follow the way the deer is going and you can look back to your last blood.Almost always the wounded deer will take the easiest route to escape if possible.I have never used any of the stuff the companies sell to spray on blood to make it show up better.If one goes slow enough to watch so you dont walk on any drops you should be ok.

While you are tracking the deer make sure to watch for blood on both sides of the trail to see if he is bleeding bad on both side if the arrow cleared the body.

Another thing you need to be careful with is to not give up to soon.If you hit the deer high in the body and the exit hole is high then the deer might travel 30-40 yards before it drops blood as it will take some time to fill the body cavity to the lower exit hole.

I hope this helps.

Shoot straight,dont take bad shots and give it time to die and your tracking will be easier and you will loose less deer. smile.gif

Good Hunting

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bmc    5

It all boils down to shot placement. I've had deer drop within sight, some spine shot and some not, and other's that have went quite a ways, 100-200 yds. When you release that arrow, watch where it hits the deer and watch how the deer reacts. I shot a doe one time that turned to quarter towards me when I released the arrow. I hit her behind the front shoulder and the arrow angled through and came out at the base of the ham on the opposite side. I don't know who was more startled, her or me! She made about 3 jumps, turned to look back, and down she went! I shot another doe, broadside, a bit far back, but right through the liver. She honest to god, kept on feeding in the field like noting happened. The blood was pouring out of both sides and she wandered to the edge of the field and down she went. If the night is going to be cool, and you have a questionable hit, leave the deer over night. You probably won't sleep that night, but have much better odds on finding the deer, rather than pushing it. One more thing, if you're going to track at night, GO SLOW and KEEP QUIET!!!, and only have 1 or at the most 2 other people with you. Nothing push's a wounded deer, like it knowing it is being pursued! I've had some rifle shot deer go farther than bow shot deer. Good Luck this fall!!!


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delmuts    19

as the guys have said, knowing where you hit the deer is very important! if your arrow shows clean blood, good! but if it has gunk on it , and it smell BAD !! this will indicate a paunch hit. back away quietly and wait! a paunch/gut shot deer will usually not go very far before bedding down.( due to it feeling sick) but may take a long time to exspire.( i've had them still alive the next morning)if you push deer with poor hits, they will get a adrenilen(sp?) rush and may run for a long ways with little blood loss. experience is the best teacher, but so are other more experienced hunters. something one can do to help identify blood is to carry a small spray bottle filled with peroxide. if it bubbles, good chance it is blood.( this does work, but kind of a pain . i.e ; leaking bottles and such)

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Good tips by all!!

Instead of toilet paper, I always have trail marking tape in my truck and I keep dropping bits by every blood spot. The you can look back and see the direction of travel. yes, I go back later and pick them up.

Unless you see it fall, wait at least 1/2 hour. If its gut shot, at least 6 hours!!!! You WILL jump a gut shot deer out of its bed, no blood trail will be left, and odds are you will lose that deer!!!

Line up someone that you can call to help you, four eyes are better than two.

This whole tracking thing is one reason I encourage rookie bowhunters to shoot a few deer - does or small bucks - in order to get the practice shooting and tracking. You don't want to wait until you have a chance at Mr. Big to learn. And nothing like a lost deer to send you back to the archery butt!!!!

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Dahitman44    0

Blackjack --

That is waht we do. Get help. Wait 30 minutes min. and if it is a gut shot wait and least three hours, depending on blood, etc.

We do the same for Gun hunting. There is no reason to run up and spook a deer.

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Gordie    0

Thanks guys for the info and I like the toilet paper idea(dual pourpose) if yea know what I mean tongue.gif no use in rushing after the shot. and the overnight wait would be worse than the night before opening morning.

Thanks again..

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fishermn    0

Besides being dual purpose TP will disintegrate pretty quickly in the weather, so you dont really need to go pick it all back up. Flagging tape works well and is very compact, but I hate going back and taking it all back off...

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bigbucks    6

Wait at least a half hour unless you can see it dead, know the hit was perfect & could see it pumping out blood like crazy, or know it was good & heard that tell tale crash within about 10 seconds of the shot.

One thing I've decided, is if you find a bed, assuming the deer's not laying dead in it, quit for a few hours or until morning. Unless there's a ton of blood, be honest with yourself, a little looks like a lot when you're keyed up from the shot & want that deer so bad, wait.

I've learned that slowly the hard way. Yes, I've followed them immediately & a short distance further from a bed found the deer dead, but I've also followed & soon jumped it. A few of those have eventually turned out good too, but some haven't. Then you have to go based on where you know the hit was. In the case of one deer we pushed, we knew the hit was very good, although not perfect obviously, & he hadn't gone very far to start with before I saw him go down, plus when we'd bump him he'd go 30-50 yards & stand there waivering for a few seconds before bedding in the flashlight beam. The weather was also very warm & getting help the next day was going to be next to impossible. Those are extenuating circumstances, normally you're better off waiting.

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