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Spine shot
Whitetail Deer
Contributors to this thread:
Bassman 25-Nov-21
Twinetickler 25-Nov-21
wildwilderness 25-Nov-21
APauls 25-Nov-21
Catscratch 26-Nov-21
Guardian hunter 26-Nov-21
Fields 26-Nov-21
molsonarcher 26-Nov-21
JL 26-Nov-21
bumpinblaze4x4 26-Nov-21
Grunter 26-Nov-21
walleyes 26-Nov-21
badbull 26-Nov-21
Corax_latrans 26-Nov-21
Fuzzy 04-Dec-21
Dale06 04-Dec-21
From: Bassman
I rushed and shot basically strait down believe I hit a nice buck in the spine arrow just stopped dead and sounds like I hit a 2x4 wack with not much penitration about 2" maybe 3"deer but i ran 75 yds with arrow sticking strait up and out I waited the 10 mins till it was dark I knew it was a poor judgement as I watched my lumanock as it ran off and stopped l lost sight of it texted a freind he said not to chase it leave it by next day morning absolutely no sign of blood , hair anything I know within 20yds were it stoped I did circle after circle then a 100yd grid there's runs in many dif directions so I just started to follow them and search no luk .... Any one else have an idea what happens or why there was no blood or why it didn't drop or get stunned or anything else ... Is it possible the buck will live or my poor decision is gonna cost his life and suffering not my intention at all anybody have an idea what happend

From: Twinetickler
Blood doesn't flow uphill. No exit hole. If you didn't get into chest or through the spine he will break that arrow off and probably be ok. If you got that broadhead lodged into the top of his chest it may eventually kill him. Don't count on finding any blood.

What’s your bow and arrow set up?

Definitely hit bone, most likely not spine since that would drop it. Probably top of shoulder. Buck May or may not live but will not be back this season.

From: APauls
Almost no chance of you getting him. Crazier things have happened though. Might make it might not

From: Catscratch
The spine is a big, heavy structure that protects a relatively small nerve going through the middle of it. I've witnessed deer walking with an arrow in the spine and cleaned several that had broadheads healed into them. I would guess that it's pretty likely your deer will be ok and chasing does.

X2 with catscratch

From: Fields
good luck. Id be out looking at night, for your lumenock... anything is possible, but I'd say chances are slim if you didn't get below the spine...

From: molsonarcher
I hit a big buck in the way you described several years ago. Dropped like a rock, put a second one in his lungs. IMO you did not hit the spine but probably shoulder bone. Guessing he will live but if you did get into the chest cavity you also might get a lung. Agreed with others you wont have a bloodtrail but may have a dead deer. There is an artery running under the spine that you could have gotten as well. Good luck in your search

From: JL
Sorry to hear about that. What BH were you using?

On the flip side.....if you had a red lumanock and the arrow is still stuck in him on Christmas Eve.....you can tell the kids it's Rudolph.

Based on the description it sounds like you were just left/right of center and missed the spinal cord but hit the vertebrae itself (depending how far forward/back you were). Typically this would be a non fatal wound as long as it doesn't get infected or cause nerve damage but i did find a dead bucks years ago (that the neighbor shot) that had a muzzy three blade stuck just off center in the vertebrae; he had shot it in november and i found it during shed season in march but it was all bones and likely didn't live very long; that said, it was 500 yards from where he shot it. Keep your fingers crossed but if it is fatal it's not likely he dies within a few days of the shot so recovery is unlikely. Good luck

From: Grunter
I also found a decent buck years ago shed hunting. Had a broadhead in the vertebrae. Dont know who shot it or how long it lived after the shot. The shot looked to be straight under the guy. Not a shot i would take.

From: walleyes
Shot a deer from a treestand and hit high and never found it. Shot the same deer 1 year to the day later and after butchering it I almost had myself convinced it was a different deer as I could find no sign. I tied the carcass to a tree and checked after the ravens picked it clean and lodged right between the ribs was my 4 blade broadhead encased about the size of a golf ball. I saved the vertebae as it was healed up but you can see where it had broke the dorsal peice right off. So it was a clean wound and he was chasing does 2 weeks later.

Funny thing was right where I lost blood the first time was where he fell dead from a heart shot a year later.

From: badbull
In my experience with deer they usually drop when hit in the spine. If hit in the shoulder they can run for a mile or more at a high galloping rate. The evidence that you describe seems tipical of a shoulder hit and sometimes an exact hit location can be very deceptive. I once hit a blacktail in the shoulder at 40 yards (out of a 76 lb. compound) that I tracked for about a mile. Three months later ( when the season was closed) that same buck walked by me at less than 10 yards in about the same spot that I hit originally hit him. I saw no wound evidence but he did walk with a slight limp. Every situation is a little different but my expectation/guess for your deer might be similar. I'm wishing for a good outcome for you so good luck.

“ There is an artery running under the spine that you could have gotten as well. ”

I’m sure there will be those who are going to disagree, but JMO…. No way in hell you could punch down through the spine and open up that artery on a “straight down” shot without dropping the animal on the spot.

And if you DID put anything more than a tiny nick in that one…. the animal would probably be down right quick, because it’s a VERY high pressure line…

I mean, hypothetically… a 2-blade head that came in at a slight angle and hit nothing but the disc between two vertebrae…. And you could also win the Powerball….

But how big was that nock waving?

Seems if the head were lodged in the shoulder, it stands to reason that the nock would wag around a LOT more than if the head were wedged into the backbone.

From: Fuzzy
you and the deer have a story to tell. lesson learned for both

From: Dale06
I hit one high two years ago. It dropped in its tracks. I was in a ground blind and decided to exit the rear of the blind and put another arrow in it. The blind zipper was stuck and it took maybe 30 seconds to get out of the blind. When I got out, the deer was 75 yards away walking with difficulty, so I let it walk. I waited and hour to track, it was now dark, found nothing. Came back next morning and found it 75 yards from where I last saw it. Coyotes had eaten all but a little meat on the head.

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