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Mar 25th, 2012
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Do you aim low on a deer? #5294186 09/08/14 01:28 PM
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I have seen (on tv, never bowhunted before) and read that deer tend to crouch a little when they hear the bow shot, and some people miss high with their shot.

Wondering if you aim a little lower in the body to account for this or do you just shoot center of mass and hope the deer doesn't duck your shot?

Just trying to be able to coach my son appropriately. In theory, there should be less than a quarter of a second the deer could potentially move from the release to the hit (assuming a shot around 30 yards or less), so I imagine aiming straight away is the best thing, but just curious what you all do.

Last edited by Texas buckeye; 09/08/14 01:29 PM.
Re: Do you aim low on a deer? [Re: Texas buckeye] #5294201 09/08/14 01:33 PM
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I aim where I want to hit.

Pick a spot on the animal, not just center mass. Goes with the old saying of "aim small, miss small". No different than trying to hit the center of a blank pie plate and then trying to hit a plate with a dot in the middle. Your groups will shrink dramatically and it reduces the margin of error.

One main key to not worrying about string jump is to wait on the shot until the animal is calm. I try not to shoot at a deer that is real jumpy or is looking at me. Seems to make a difference.

Good luck up


Re: Do you aim low on a deer? [Re: Texas buckeye] #5294211 09/08/14 01:36 PM
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Makes sense and that is basically what I have been telling him . He is going to work this next month on really shrinking groups and getting consistent first shots.

I like the idea of shooting at calm deer, that also is something gun hunters (like me) don't have to really think much about. Thanks for the input!!

Re: Do you aim low on a deer? [Re: Texas buckeye] #5294260 09/08/14 02:03 PM
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yes, many deer get spine shot or missed if aiming high shoulder. 20 yards and beyond I would aim at the "arm pit" area. I like to aim where the front leg first comes into the body, maybe 1-2 inches up from there. Once he gets consistent tight groups he should practice going out and shooting one arrow every hour or at least everyday, changing the yardages up. This will help him understand that it is the only shot he will have and make it count.

Re: Do you aim low on a deer? [Re: Texas buckeye] #5294303 09/08/14 02:22 PM
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Aim where you want to hit which should be in the lower 1/3 of a deer's chest and tight to the shoulder line. If your arrow hits there and the BH does its job, there will be a very dead deer not far away. If the deer does flinch at the sound of the shot, likely your arrow will hit a little higher and still get a good double lung hit resulting in a downed deer and good blood trail. As said above , the key is to shoot a deer while it's body language indicated a relaxed, unaware disposition and do such at a reasonable range with short arrow flight which causes less potential reaction time on the deer's part.

Re: Do you aim low on a deer? [Re: Texas buckeye] #5294310 09/08/14 02:23 PM
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I aim in the lower third of the deer for lungs and heart waiting for that front leg to stretch out. I still choose a small area but in the lower third of the deer. And for sure if possible wait for the animal to be as relaxed as possible.



Re: Do you aim low on a deer? [Re: Texas buckeye] #5294329 09/08/14 02:32 PM
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I aim at the armpit anyway so ill have a bit of room to play with... but no I don't aim lower than were I want to hit.

Re: Do you aim low on a deer? [Re: Texas buckeye] #5294455 09/08/14 03:36 PM
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Thanks for all the input. Sounds like just a different aim point for bow vs gun. Will counsel my son accordingly.

Re: Do you aim low on a deer? [Re: Texas buckeye] #5294473 09/08/14 03:42 PM
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Originally Posted By: Texas buckeye

In theory, there should be less than a quarter of a second the deer could potentially move from the release to the hit (assuming a shot around 30 yards or less),
Really need to learn how to read the body language of the deer. A calm relaxed deer, aim where you want to hit. A nervous, skittish deer can become tricky. You would be amazed how much one can drop in a split second. Couple years ago, I had a big buck come in. As he walked thru my shooting lane I had to mouth grunt him to stop him. He was only 13 yds away, but now he's on full alert. I put my 15 yd pin right at his belly line, just behind the front leg. When I found him, I had hit just under his backstrap and only getting one lung. If I had aimed any higher, I would have probably shot right over him. This was a 300lb Kansas deer, and he dropped right at 14 inches, and it was only a 13 yard shot.

Re: Do you aim low on a deer? [Re: Texas buckeye] #5294631 09/08/14 04:51 PM
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Originally Posted By: Texas buckeye
Thanks for all the input. Sounds like just a different aim point for bow vs gun. Will counsel my son accordingly.


Couple of different thoughts on aim point with a bow, but it is typically different than a gun and different where I aim with a gun. Gun, I aim high shoulder and break the deer down, with a bow I tend to aim in the "pocket" against the leg or aim on the lower third of the body about 5" behind the shoulder line. The second area is good for lung shot, the pocket is a heart shot. The lung shot provides a greater margin of error. Have your son look at some diagrams of the vitals.

One key point, since you mentioned you are mainly a gun hunter, is give the deer time to expire. I believe more deer are lost because of anxious hunters attempting recovery too soon.


Re: Do you aim low on a deer? [Re: Texas buckeye] #5294789 09/08/14 05:57 PM
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Point taken on waiting for animal to expire. We haven't been hunting long and fortunately have not had to search for animals yet, as all our kills have had witnessed "crumble up and die" events, but I def know to let archery shots wait, again unless the animal is seen to crumble. If the animal is hit and just goes and lays down, we will wait for sure to let it expire and then some. I hope to have the animal expire within 100 yards or closer, but you never know, and we are thinking of strategies to help us with animal recovery and ways to shoot to make the best of our set up. I am glad he has come to me with ideas about how he wants to shoot animals and which way they will be facing to maximize our chances of recovery. Obviously a quick death is hoped for, but I am hoping both of us are patient enough to let the arrow fly at the right time and not make a bad shot. He is good about the patience part and has passed on deer in the past with his gun, so it shouldn't be terribly difficult to make good decisions, but time will tell.

Was just trying to sit with the wife this am and set some dates for hunting. Won't have much opportunity for strictly bow hunting as our October is pretty busy, but that doesn't mean we can't sit there in November too.

Re: Do you aim low on a deer? [Re: Texas buckeye] #5294794 09/08/14 06:00 PM
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He needs to learn to aim for his exit if hes going to start hunting from elevated stands.... a good angle can change things up fast

Re: Do you aim low on a deer? [Re: Texas buckeye] #5294870 09/08/14 06:35 PM
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Originally Posted By: Texas buckeye
Point taken on waiting for animal to expire. We haven't been hunting long and fortunately have not had to search for animals yet, as all our kills have had witnessed "crumble up and die" events, but I def know to let archery shots wait, again unless the animal is seen to crumble. If the animal is hit and just goes and lays down, we will wait for sure to let it expire and then some. I hope to have the animal expire within 100 yards or closer, but you never know, and we are thinking of strategies to help us with animal recovery and ways to shoot to make the best of our set up. I am glad he has come to me with ideas about how he wants to shoot animals and which way they will be facing to maximize our chances of recovery. Obviously a quick death is hoped for, but I am hoping both of us are patient enough to let the arrow fly at the right time and not make a bad shot. He is good about the patience part and has passed on deer in the past with his gun, so it shouldn't be terribly difficult to make good decisions, but time will tell.

Was just trying to sit with the wife this am and set some dates for hunting. Won't have much opportunity for strictly bow hunting as our October is pretty busy, but that doesn't mean we can't sit there in November too.


When trailing a deer that has been wounded, go slow. Always good to keep a roll of TP with you and mark the trail as you go and mark "last blood." If there are two or more helping, I like one or two looking for blood on the trail and let the others go 30 yards ahead. If the trail seems to turn turn or the deer makes a variation, redirect the ones ahead. You would be surprised how many times they will locate blood or find the deer, saving time.

It is very rare to have a "crumple and die" shot with a bow. Typically, if a well struck deer goes over 100 yards, I assume it wasn't hit as well as I originally thought. The blood will usually give you an idea of what kind of hit you have: red, dark red, frothy pinkish, splattered, bubbles in it, does it smell, etc.


Re: Do you aim low on a deer? [Re: Texas buckeye] #5295076 09/08/14 08:14 PM
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Another reason people often hit high on a deer is because they're elevated in a stand. When shooting downhill you have a natural tendency to shoot high. So, if you haven't practiced from an elevated position and expect everything to be just like shooting on flat land, you're in for a surprise. It's not the same. You have to practice how you're going to be hunting. If that's in an elevated stand, then your best bet is to practice that way, preferably at a height roughly equal to what you plan to hunt from.

You definitely want to aim where you want to hit, but make sure that's the right place on a deer that will most likely duck when they hear the shot. You want to aim in the lower 1/3rd of the kill zone, not the center and certainly not the upper 1/2 of the kill zone.

And if you think Whitetail are bad, you should see some of these African gazelles and antelope like impalas jump the string. Holy Cow they can pancake like crazy when they hear the bow string twang.

Last edited by Bowhunt Only; 09/08/14 08:17 PM.
Re: Do you aim low on a deer? [Re: Texas buckeye] #5296569 09/09/14 04:03 PM
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aim behind the shoulder lower 1/3 of the deer

Re: Do you aim low on a deer? [Re: Texas buckeye] #5297941 09/10/14 02:38 AM
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I aim for the exit hole. But I aim for a heart shot if given a clear shot. If the deer jumps I hit lungs if it does not I hit heart. Either way I win. I am of the opinion that most all deer will move after you release the string, I don't care how clam or relaxed you may think a deer is. I have shot a bunch and not many just stand there and take an arrow. They move so fast you just don't know they moved. EVERY deer I have put on video have moved.


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Re: Do you aim low on a deer? [Re: Nolan Outdoors] #5298507 09/10/14 02:54 PM
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Originally Posted By: Nolan Outdoors
I aim for the exit hole. But I aim for a heart shot if given a clear shot. If the deer jumps I hit lungs if it does not I hit heart. Either way I win. I am of the opinion that most all deer will move after you release the string, I don't care how clam or relaxed you may think a deer is. I have shot a bunch and not many just stand there and take an arrow. They move so fast you just don't know they moved. EVERY deer I have put on video have moved.


took the words from my mouth... Yes I aim low, for the heart shot. If they jump i'm still in the money. Practice practice practice on it. Deer are quick, real quick and they generally move


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Re: Do you aim low on a deer? [Re: Texas buckeye] #5299709 09/11/14 12:25 AM
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Buckeye Sir

think about this, I've had just as many "jump" my string as I've had "duck"

aim low thinking they are going to duck, and they jump, aim high thinking they are going to jump and they duck. put it where you want it hope for the best.

Re: Do you aim low on a deer? [Re: KS 196 6/8] #5303383 09/12/14 09:21 PM
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Originally Posted By: KS 196 6/8
Buckeye Sir

think about this, I've had just as many "jump" my string as I've had "duck"

aim low thinking they are going to duck, and they jump, aim high thinking they are going to jump and they duck. put it where you want it hope for the best.


not saying it doesn't happen, but I have never seen it... they generally squat. Never seen it in real life, never seen it happen on a hunting show... they drop to the shot... not leap in air


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Re: Do you aim low on a deer? [Re: Texas buckeye] #5303789 09/13/14 01:06 AM
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This is what most deer do as soon as you release the string.

Deer Jumping String Video

I have had them turn 180 degrees before an arrow can hit them at 32 yards. They are jumpy.


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Re: Do you aim low on a deer? [Re: Texas buckeye] #5303800 09/13/14 01:12 AM
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Quote:
think about this, I've had just as many "jump" my string as I've had "duck"


Any critter has to "duck" before it can "jump".

If you don't think so try this, stand in the middle of a room and WITHOUT BENDING YOUR KNEES try to jump. How high did you "jump"? You have to first bend your knees (AKA "duck) before you can "jump".

Deer don't technical "jump the string" they bend there knees in order to "jump" or run away. Kind of like if you were going to run your first move would be to "duck" to load your legs so you could run.


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Re: Do you aim low on a deer? [Re: Nolan Outdoors] #5304473 09/13/14 02:45 PM
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Originally Posted By: Nolan Outdoors
stand in the middle of a room and WITHOUT BENDING YOUR KNEES try to jump. How high did you "jump"?
Man tells the truth!!
I didn't even get off the ground!!! loser8

Re: Do you aim low on a deer? [Re: esnow74] #5304479 09/13/14 02:47 PM
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Originally Posted By: esnow74
yes, many deer get spine shot or missed if aiming high shoulder. 20 yards and beyond I would aim at the "arm pit" area. I like to aim where the front leg first comes into the body, maybe 1-2 inches up from there. Once he gets consistent tight groups he should practice going out and shooting one arrow every hour or at least everyday, changing the yardages up. This will help him understand that it is the only shot he will have and make it count.


Exactly

Re: Do you aim low on a deer? [Re: Texas buckeye] #5304893 09/13/14 07:41 PM
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aim low

Re: Do you aim low on a deer? [Re: Texas buckeye] #5305979 09/14/14 05:22 PM
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Aim low but not too low because if the deer doesn't react you may only hit brisket.


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