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We took a number of does and fawns this past week during inline season, but I have to say I am not too happy with what I have found this week while out for birds. So far I have found three dead does on public land. Two were gut shot, one rifle, one muzzleloader, and one was shot through the throat with a muzzleloader. Apparently some jag off tried head shoot that one, to "save some meat", and ended up wasting it all. It was only laying 15 yards into a thick hedge, right along a huge deer trail, next to that huge cornfield (in case the shooter is reading this) and probably ran an bled out within 100 yards. Quite a few times I heard long shot strings from rifles on second Saturday, so I guess that must have been senior hunters who should know better. I can't imagine a youth having the confidence to fling lead like that.

This early season should be filled with clean, easy shots. The deer are not pressured yet. There is no reason to take poor shots for an October meat deer. If you don't want it to run, shoot it high shoulder. It is a huge target and there is not as much waste as some seem to think.
 

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We took a number of does and fawns this past week during inline season

Apparently some jag off tried head shoot that one, to "save some meat", and ended up wasting it all.

It was only laying 15 yards into a thick hedge, right along a huge deer trail, next to that huge cornfield (in case the shooter is reading this) and probably ran an bled out within 100 yards.

Quite a few times I heard long shot strings from rifles on second Saturday, so I guess that must have been senior hunters who should know better. I can't imagine a youth having the confidence to fling lead like that.

This early season should be filled with clean, easy shots.

There is no reason to take poor shots for an October meat deer.
There are a lot of assumptions in this post about a "jag off," Seniors, and tracking skills..

The other thought regarding "October meat deer" is why take a fawn?
 

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Yeah that's bad finding dead deer like that is never a good thing always be sure of your shot and track a wounded deer until ya find it. At least some of you fellas seen deer,, I was hunting up on game land 159 by the Dyberry Creek and probably would have had better luck looking for a Unicorn. Big area though and not many hunters so I think the deer were staying put and not moving around much.
 

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Reminds me of the dead buck we found one year on the property we hunt. It was a big racked 8 point that was shot pretty far back with an arrow. I knew the only guy there that hunted with a bow and when I told him about it, he said, "oh I thought I hit it too far back". I asked why he didn't track the deer. His response was "I thought the meat would be spoiled".......Shame, was a nice buck too. A week later we checked on the carcass, and it was completely eaten by animals, and someone (not me) sawed off its antlers. I could only guess who....
 

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Reminds me of the dead buck we found one year on the property we hunt. It was a big racked 8 point that was shot pretty far back with an arrow. I knew the only guy there that hunted with a bow and when I told him about it, he said, "oh I thought I hit it too far back". I asked why he didn't track the deer. His response was "I thought the meat would be spoiled".......Shame, was a nice buck too. A week later we checked on the carcass, and it was completely eaten by animals, and someone (not me) sawed off its antlers. I could only guess who....
Nature doesnt waste anything.

Good luck, Tony
 

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the younger the deer the tastier the meat
just like baby cow(veal)is considered better tasting then an old cow by some
 

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Yeah that's bad finding dead deer like that is never a good thing always be sure of your shot and track a wounded deer until ya find it.
In a perfect world, maybe. Truth is a poor shot can result in an animal you will never find. Certainly exhaust all options before giving up, but if the hunter didn't do his job correctly, the animal may be impossible to find.:sad:

It sounds like some of the animals in the OP should have been found without much problem.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Sorry, I'm having these email notification issues again...this is the only site that seems to get me, and it's only been going on for 8 years now lol. Last email I got for reply notification was 10/17.

Yes, for me a fawn is a better meat deer than a big doe. A big doe is okay for grinding anytime, but the fawn steaks are much better than a big doe if you can't age the meat. We can't hang deer here until it gets cold, so generally rifle or late seasons. A big doe is a strong breeder and virtually guarantees 2-3 healthy recruits for the next season if she doesn't get shot or hit by car. Plus, she will bring them back the same trail next year. A doe fawn will give one, maybe two, but only if she gets bred in second rut (40%?), and then she will find her own range the next season and not use the same trails. Therefore, if I have a choice I will usually shoot the fawn, or a yearling doe without fawns. Also, very early in the season I really don't like to shoot the doe off of small fawns just because it doesn't seem right to me. I know they are supposed to be able to survive, but I guess I am soft on that issue.

Seniors and youths were the only ones allowed rifle use so I do have to assume it was seniors throwing lead like the first morning of buck season. Senior, to me, just means an older hunter, not a necessarily a good one. My dad is a good senior hunter, but he has been a good shot since he was 10 yo with .22 shorts. He used his tags with inline.

The big doe shot through the throat had a big ~1/2" hole about two inches below the jaw hinge, straight broadside through the front of the throat. Probably just behind the esophagus, but maybe it cut it. I didn't stick my finger in there. The hq were eaten out pretty well. Maybe it ran way more than 100 yards, I don't know, but I know it was a bad result from a poor decision, or the shot was a full foot and a half off target.

These inlines are superbly effective at putting down deer in short order, provided you hit it half decent. I have yet to have one make it 50 yards, and a lot drop right down. I shoot inline a lot due to special regs area. One of the deer this year was a close range down the throat shot. NOT a head shot, 9 inches below that. She didn't move a foot, just right down. It didn't ruin much meat except a little left shoulder, and the barnes copper was found resting just against the sirloin tip. First time I have ever recovered one those bullets. 1.1" across the open petals, full weight retention. Gutting was a little messier than usual but that was done immediately so no issue there. I am seriously considering getting a 45-70 for rifle season, but it's only two weeks long and half that I spend in special regs anyway. I just can't seem to justify it.

To find three dead deer in a day of pheasant hunting really does tick me off. I was hunting them too, so it reflects badly on me as part of the group. Hence the derisive jag off. I hereby apologize to all the self-identifying jag offs that did not shoot bullets into the throats of un-recovered deer last week.
 

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Could not disagree more. I target big doe. I age the meat at least 6 days in a walk in cooler before it is butchered and it is every bit as good and tender as a fawn of the year and a heck of a lot more meat. Fawns of the year are the last day of the season for me.
 
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You really can't assume a deer shot in the upper neck was the result of an attempted head shot. I've seen guys that were such poor shots , especially when shooting at game, that a shoulder hold could easily end up a head shot deer. Some of the best shots on game I have known were only average shots at the range. Big difference between shooting paper and shooting game.
 

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Very true Simon.The bad and sad fact though is some Hunters won,t track.If they don,t see it drop they assume they missed and won,t even attempt to follow up on their shot or shots.Sad but true.
 

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Discussion Starter #15 (Edited)
True enough. It was either a head shot attempt and a 5" miss off head or an 16" miss from the lungs. I guess you could call it the neck, but to me it was the throat. Right under the head. The two gut shots were just...I don't know, to me it is just sloppy.

No cooler here, that is the problem. I like aged steaks, but every bit as good is a stretch, at least for shed hanging. Better, but not fawn. I would love to build a little walk in cooler and a smokehouse but neither has happened yet.

The patterns and recruitment are also big things to me. I've read 40% of doe fawn get bred second rut, but lets say it is as high as 50% for roundness.

Shoot a yearling you lose 2 recruits next year. Shoot a big doe you lose two guaranteed, with three on occasion, but even so call it two deer recruited. And you lose them both coming back those same trails possibly with bucks in tow.
Total = 30-40 lb meat - 2 recruits

Shoot a (unsexed) fawn.
50% of time it is a button buck, you lose no recruits next year. Plenty of protected spikes and forkhorns or legal bucks to breed any does that need it.
50% of time it is a doe fawn, you lose 1/2 recruit. Rarely they can have twins, 10% I've read, but they can also lose the pregnancy or even their own life during a hard winter easier than a big doe.
Total = 15-25 lb tender meat - 0.25 recruits

If you care about seeing lots of protected deer then the math may be different. I just like to keep the numbers up, keep the hunting easy, and eat tender meat.
 

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Very true Simon.The bad and sad fact though is some Hunters won,t track.If they don,t see it drop they assume they missed and won,t even attempt to follow up on their shot or shots.Sad but true.
That or they start to track and give up if they don't see blood 30 feet from where the deer was shot.

The doe I shot two years ago, I didn't see blood for maybe the first 100 or so feet, then the trail started.
 

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I've tracked deer 100 yards or more by just following their tracks and rustled up leaves and have never seen a drop of blood. And have found the deer. Sometimes they just don't bleed much, especially with ML round balls, but little blood can occur with any weapon. I'm sure there may have been a small amount of blood I missed, but not enough to track. Always do a thorough check of the entire area before giving up!
 

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Part of the problem with neck shots in muzzleloader is that the low velocity of the bullets seems to produce much less hydrostatic shock than a rifle which could have contributed to the deer not falling straight down. If you don’t directly hit the vertebrae than it doesn’t deliver enough shock to stun the animal or break the neck thereby allowing the animal to run with little sign that it was hit.

Case in point I shot a doe this year in muzzleloader while on my way out to be a walker on a drive, it was roughly 30 yards through some thick brush. Through the smoke it looked like a good hit so I went out to start the drive figuring I would check for blood at the end since I would walk right through that area. On the drive I found the deer almost 100 yards from where I hit it and the heart was split near completely in two. On a similar shot with a 30-06 they don’t run even half that distance.

As for the shot being wide anything is possible, I spent 2 hours tracking a deer over 800 yards following drops of blood through the woods only for a neighbor to call and say they saw the deer walk perfectly fine except it had blood on the front part of its back leg. The guy that shot had a hang fire on his muzzleloader that caused him to pull his shot slightly low and back resulting in him grazing the back leg under the deer. Judging by the slowly dwindling blood trail and the neighbors call I would say it was clotting up and she should be fine.
 

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Last Saturday I found a small 7 pts buck.
It had been there since early or midweek.
It had been shot with an inline or maybe rifle.
The round entered in front of the left rear leg and exited thru the liver.

I have no doubt it was intentional. Another slob hunter.
I asked the neighbors on that side if anyone hit a deer and couldn't find it. He hadn't heard anything.
I'm not a fan of that week. I think it should be removed altogether. The temptation to use it for shooting a buck is to much for some. Rant over.
 

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Part of the problem with neck shots in muzzleloader is that the low velocity of the bullets seems to produce much less hydrostatic shock than a rifle which could have contributed to the deer not falling straight down. If you don’t directly hit the vertebrae than it doesn’t deliver enough shock to stun the animal or break the neck thereby allowing the animal to run with little sign that it was hit.
The very same reason many times a deer hit high in the lungs with a centerfire rifle will drop in its' tracks. It's not the damage to the lungs that knocks the lights out immediately, but the hydrostatic shock sent through the spine that floors the animal.
 
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