QDMA Broadhead Study - The HuntingPA.com Outdoor Community
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post #1 of 34 (permalink) Old 08-08-2019, 06:58 PM Thread Starter
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QDMA Broadhead Study

QDMA put this article out yesterday about broadhead choice and deer recovery. It's really interesting and might surprise a few of you.



https://www.qdma.com/does-broadhead-...ign=2019-08-08

Last edited by fragmag; 08-08-2019 at 07:00 PM.
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post #2 of 34 (permalink) Old 08-08-2019, 08:15 PM
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I can only speak from my personal experiences of partaking in 100's of blood trailing excursions for a variety of animals, but mechanical/expandable head blood trails always produce A LOT more blood than fixed blade heads. Two years ago I was in a bear camp where 7 bowhunters were successful and after following the blood trails for 20 yards everyone involved could tell what type of broadhead the hunter was using without even asking them. It kind of became a running a joke..."Ought oh! Steve was using a fixed blade head we're going to have to take our time on this one."
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post #3 of 34 (permalink) Old 08-08-2019, 08:24 PM
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I belong to the school of shoot what's shoots good out of your bow and is of good quality and sharp. If you put any sharp broadhead thru both lungs the deer will be dead in about 8 seconds with monotonous regularity.
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post #4 of 34 (permalink) Old 08-08-2019, 10:59 PM
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Interesting, hard to argue with the volume of data used. I wonder if the mechanicals had a higher % of recovery due to being more accurate or due to being more lethal? Mebey a little of both?

My personal experience is only with fixed blades, but I've seen no reason to need something more lethal. Even on some not so perfect shots they always seem to put deer down quickly. And those not so perfect shots were operator error, not a result of poor accuracy caused by the broadhead. I will admit to seeing a few sparce bloodtrails, so that could be a potential advantage to mechanicals.

Still won't use 'em, still don't like 'em, and anybody who does is a sissy.😆
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post #5 of 34 (permalink) Old 08-09-2019, 10:16 AM
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I can tell you from years of personal experience that Andy's opinion is flawed.I started a management hunt on a 3500 acre piece of property that surrounded a private residential comunity.Hunters had to have a bowhunter-ed card,pass a proficiency test with broadheads,check in every deer and report every wounded deer.At the end of the season,every hunter was required to fill out a report saying what they harvested,missed,wounded and saw.The vast majority of people who i know for a fact wounded deer,never fessed up,even those who were on the wildlife committee.I know that for a fact because I was on a good number of those blood trails.For close to 10 years,i got called multiple times per week to help recover deer.I've been on hundreds of recoveries.One thing I say with 100% confidence is that a mechanical broadhead is no more lethal than a fixed head.The majority of recoveries were gut shot deer.If the hunter backed out immediately,we found 100% of those deer and they were usually found within 60-75 yards of where the deer was last seen.If the hunter started to track the deer,our recovery rate was zero.Many of those deer were eventually found but they were found after they spoiled.About 50% of the gut shot deer we recovered were still alive to some degree the next morning,even those shot with huge mechanicals.

Because of the poor reporting rate,it was impossible to say what the actual wounding rate was but I can tell you that it was a minimum of 30% but since I wasn't aware of every case,it was likely much higher.Did the majority of those deer die?No.A gut shot deer is almost always a dead deer but many were shot through the back straps,hit in the legs or shoulder.Most of those deer could be seen limping around for at least a few months.Some died but others definately survived til the next season.I kept very detailed records until my office was flooded in 2013.

The bottom line is this.A BH should be razor sharp,penetrate well and stay together.The size of it means nothing.Once you put a sharp BH through any vital organ,that organ stops functioning.It doesn't batter if it's a 1" hole or you blow it to pieces.Becauase of this hunt,I had the opportunity to kill boatlaods of deer and be on hand when even more were killed.I've used fixed heads and a variety of big mechanicals.With fixed heads,I've never had a deer hit in the vitals run out of sight.They run 30-60 yards,stop,wobble and fall over.Big mechanicals seem to scare the ---- out of them and they always take off like a naked savage.Use what you want as they all kill deer.However,unless you're hunting out in the open in high winds,a big mechanical offers no advantage.
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post #6 of 34 (permalink) Old 08-09-2019, 10:33 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TBrom View Post
I can only speak from my personal experiences of partaking in 100's of blood trailing excursions for a variety of animals, but mechanical/expandable head blood trails always produce A LOT more blood than fixed blade heads. Two years ago I was in a bear camp where 7 bowhunters were successful and after following the blood trails for 20 yards everyone involved could tell what type of broadhead the hunter was using without even asking them. It kind of became a running a joke..."Ought oh! Steve was using a fixed blade head we're going to have to take our time on this one."
That hasn't been my experience at all and we're talking about 100"s of recoveries.The amount of blood on the ground is much more dependent on where the deer was hit than what it was hit with.I'm not saying slick tricks are the best head but that's what I use almost all of the time.I generally use the smaller 1" standard just because they fit in my quiver better.I never tallied up an exact count but I've easily killed over 100 deer with them since 2003.With the exception of one gut shot that I recovered the next morning,I never had a deer run out of sight and not all were hit perfect.In all that time,I've never not had a complete pass through and I've never rendered a head unusable.I've also tinkered with various mechanicals and 100% of the time,those deer run farther and I'm 100% convinced it's because they scare the bejesius out of them.My son has been using a lightweight set-up with either magnus stingers or slick trick vipers since he was 11.Even with very low KE,he gets passthroughs and rarely has a deer make it past 50 yards.Pay the crazy price for mechanicals if you want but you get no advantage,even on marginal hits.
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post #7 of 34 (permalink) Old 08-09-2019, 02:48 PM
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Lots of opinions, just like bellybuttons. Its hard to argue against 20years of documented data when everyone else is offering folklore from bloodtrails past.

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post #8 of 34 (permalink) Old 08-09-2019, 03:03 PM
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It's not hard for me to argue because I had over 10 years worth of data with over 1600 deer killed.Unfortunately,I lost most of it when my office was flooded a couple years ago.It was something I devoted a large percentage of my time to so I still have most of it memorized.Lot's of flaws in that guy's argument.
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post #9 of 34 (permalink) Old 08-09-2019, 03:04 PM
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I am a fixed blade guy. Never had any issues using them. I have shot plenty of deer over the past 20 years using them. I have recovered all my deer withing 30-40 after the shot with the exception of last year. My arrow deflected off a limb and hit the dead zone. I did harvest that same deer in rifle season and the wound was healed over. Never had any issues with a blood trail using fixed blades. I used mechanicals one year so see what the fuss was about. Did not like them. I shot 1 deer the first year i used them, the broad head did not open but i still managed to get the deer due to the shot placement.

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post #10 of 34 (permalink) Old 08-09-2019, 03:29 PM
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For the 1989 through the 2006 seasons, bowhunters who then could use only fixed-blade broadheads recovered 746 of 908 hit deer (82.2%). For the 2007 through 2018 seasons bowhunters who used fixed-blades recovered 185 of 223 hit deer (83.0%). Since these recovery rates are similar, there is no reason not to combine all fixed-blade broadhead recovery data in order to improve the “statistical confidence” of the measure. Accordingly, bowhunters who used fixed-blades for the 1989 through 2018 seasons recovered 931 of 1131 hit deer (82.3%). Bowhunters who used mechanicals for the 2007 through 2018 seasons recovered 389 of 429 hit deer (90.7%).

This guy's methodology is severly flawed.He's using data on fixed blades going back top 1989 and mechanicals starting in 2007,which also includes crossbows.Does anyone think that maybe the bow technology has improved since 1989?We didn't even have rangefinders in 1989.He also doesn't break down what most crossbow hunters are using.My guess would be mechanicals.That would also skew results.
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