A painful reminder

Oklahoma Selfbow Society

A painful reminder

Postby docmann » Sat Dec 05, 2015 4:47 pm


You all know this, but it's worth hearing again.
When alarmed (by strange noise such as the twang if a bow string), a deer will typically drop 1/3 of its body width.
Notice the top photo and the distance between the buck's back and the log in the photo. Notice how in each frame the distance increases. This occurs in a fraction of a second, and will make you look silly. It seems that I have to almost consciously override the inclination that several months of target shooting builds into the brain. 3-D targets tend not to duck in the same fashion.
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Re: A painful reminder

Postby Aeronut » Sat Dec 05, 2015 6:54 pm

About three years ago I took a shot at a nice 8 pt. just over 10 yards away, ground level. I thought I had just had a brain f*rt and shot over him until I went and retrieved my arrow as I left the woods. The angle just didn't look right for having shot high.

That was one of the only times I have videoed any of my shots at game and I reviewed the video frame by frame when I got home. That buck almost hit his belly on the ground when he 'jumped' the string. It happened so fast I didn't realize it.

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Re: A painful reminder

Postby Topher » Mon Dec 07, 2015 8:31 pm

This happen to me at the members hunt at Kaw Lake this year. He was an 8pt, 5 on left 3 on right. He came in perfectly and slightly quartered away, walking slowly at 16 yds when I released. He was on high alert because he could smell my trail where I came in. He did not freak out but was very cautious as he was trying to figure out how to get out of there. When I shot he dropped at least a foot and so did my jaw. In my mind I was already dragging him to the truck.
Thanks for making me re-live my painful reminder. :cry:
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Re: A painful reminder

Postby KsBow » Fri Dec 11, 2015 12:33 pm

Just a bit of math. Sound travels right at 1200 fps. Let's say an arrow out of your selfbow travels 160 fps. A deer at 20 yards. When you release the string that sound gets to the deer in .05 or five hundredths of a second and his reaction starts. Your arrow is traversing the distance in .375 seconds. So the deer has approximately .370 or roughly 3/8th of a second to avoid the arrow. That dip to vamoose occurs almost instantly. Guys even a relaxed deer can swap ends before the arrow gets to him. We've all hear to aim low from elevated positions. I'm here to tell you, aim at the bottom of the kill zone on every shot. If the animal dips, you center punch him. If he doesn't dip, you've put a heart shot on him and he'll put lots more blood on the ground than he would with a higher shot.
This is the voice of 30 plus years experience and having witnessed the same events stated by Doc, Dennis and Topher. So add my name to the list too. Hope this makes sense to everyone.
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Re: A painful reminder

Postby docmann » Sat Dec 12, 2015 1:28 am

Thanks Ralph. It seems you truly have to "override" where your brain's been telling you to shoot all spring and summer on the 3-D range. Just another example where experience wins out.
Just a note, my wife asked to come hunting with me a week ago, and actually videoed the shot. It really looks like the deer is doing the limbo and hunkering just low enough to get under the arrow! Here I had a chance to impress my wife but instead dropped the ball! On a positive note, he ran only about 30 to 40 yards out and began grazing again. The surrounding does and juveniles never really seemed too alarmed.
Appreciate the stories guys. Hope you're all getting to spend some time in the field!
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Re: A painful reminder

Postby campcook » Mon Dec 14, 2015 4:13 pm

Deer are slow Doc the first Yote I shot was so fast he dropped and jumped three feet in the air. If I would have been shot one of those speedy wheelie bows I would have missed him unfortunately for him my bow was so slow the arrow caught him across the back of both front legs on his way back up. Sometimes it pays to be lucky. Alex
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