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Cape Buff Shot Placement
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Contributors to this thread:
wildwilderness 19-Mar-22
Whatthefoc 19-Mar-22
Bou'bound 19-Mar-22
Whatthefoc 19-Mar-22
drycreek 19-Mar-22
Cornpone 19-Mar-22
Stubbleduck 19-Mar-22
Buffalo1 19-Mar-22
blue spot 19-Mar-22
INbowdude 19-Mar-22
wildwilderness 19-Mar-22
Dale06 19-Mar-22
Ken Moody Safaris 19-Mar-22
Ken Moody Safaris 19-Mar-22
Whatthefoc 19-Mar-22
Firehuntfish 20-Mar-22
wildwilderness 22-Mar-22
MA-PAdeerslayer 22-Mar-22
wildwilderness 23-Mar-22
t-roy 23-Mar-22
Ken Moody Safaris 23-Mar-22
Ken Moody Safaris 23-Mar-22
Dale06 23-Mar-22
Ken Moody Safaris 23-Mar-22
x-man 23-Mar-22
Firehuntfish 23-Mar-22
Ken Moody Safaris 23-Mar-22
Firehuntfish 23-Mar-22
Dale06 23-Mar-22
Potro 23-Mar-22
Ken Moody Safaris 23-Mar-22
Firehuntfish 23-Mar-22
Dale06 23-Mar-22
Ken Moody Safaris 23-Mar-22
Ken Moody Safaris 23-Mar-22
Firehuntfish 23-Mar-22
Firehuntfish 23-Mar-22
Ken Moody Safaris 23-Mar-22
groundhunter50 23-Mar-22
speedgoat 24-Mar-22
speedgoat 24-Mar-22
Ken Moody Safaris 24-Mar-22
Ollie 24-Mar-22
Matt 24-Mar-22
wildwilderness 24-Mar-22
APauls 24-Mar-22
wildwilderness 24-Mar-22
speedgoat 24-Mar-22
speedgoat 24-Mar-22
19-Mar-22

wildwilderness's embedded Photo
wildwilderness's embedded Photo
So lets talk about Cape buff shot placement- This picture is from another thread-

Where to shoot?

From: Whatthefoc
19-Mar-22
I am no expert on this one, but if you’re asking for a best guess … I would shoot the blue dot ??.

But might wait for that near leg to take a step first.

From: Bou'bound
19-Mar-22
Shoot with what

No arrow is killing him with that set of dots

From: Whatthefoc
19-Mar-22
60# Hoyt with Rage :)

From: drycreek
19-Mar-22
I’m thinking none of those that line up with the leg bone. The red or yellow if you had a different angle, but none of them if he’s standing with that leg blocking the vitals. My two cents

From: Cornpone
19-Mar-22
Well...I've never shot a cape buffalo but with purple or red he's meat. Anatomy no different than the many deer, elk or moose I've shot. Diaphragm is another ten inches or so behind those spots. Yellow is dead as well as long as hits the heart, but don't want to favor the brisket. No such thing as dead, deader or deadest.

From: Stubbleduck
19-Mar-22
Check on an anatomy sketch of the rib cage of a Cape Buffalo...very thick skin, very heavy rib bones, rib bones overlap to a large degree. Although I don't think it is heavily enforced there is, in South Africa, a legal requirement of a minimum 80# draw weight bow for Cape Buffalo.

From: Buffalo1
19-Mar-22
Is this kinda like Blood Trail- CB ?

In the position the animal is in - slightly quartering forward- I would pick tan first and Orange second.

From: blue spot
19-Mar-22
I recall the experts describing the ribs as venetian blinds, and big and thick. With the thinnest ribs up front and the best angle being slightly 1/4 towards you. But I am not sure I have the balls to try to poke one with a sharp stick. I would have a lot more confidence trying to kill one inside 50 yards if I was carrying my lever gun. Those creatures look exponentially bigger and meaner the closer you get to them.

From: INbowdude
19-Mar-22

INbowdude's embedded Photo
INbowdude's embedded Photo
Blue or green but I would not use a 60# bow with an expandable. But what do I know?

19-Mar-22
Shoot with a bow and arrow of course.

I recall many truly experienced Africa hunters liking the quarter too even better than broadside.

From: Dale06
19-Mar-22
From my experience, there is not a draw weight enforcement for Cape buffalo in SA.

19-Mar-22
Brown dot to left of blue one.

19-Mar-22

From: Whatthefoc
19-Mar-22

From: Firehuntfish
20-Mar-22

Firehuntfish's embedded Photo
Firehuntfish's embedded Photo
Firehuntfish's embedded Photo
Firehuntfish's embedded Photo
Firehuntfish's embedded Photo
Firehuntfish's embedded Photo
Firehuntfish's embedded Photo
Firehuntfish's embedded Photo
The placement photo in the OP is not the example I would recommend using as a reference... With the front leg back, none of those shots are advisable with a bow. You really need to be near perfectly broadside or frontal to get both lungs or the heart, or you can expect a LONG (and usually dangerous) tracking job. As KM suggests, you are more than likely not going to kill that buffalo with 1 arrow using any of those shot placements at that angle.

The photos attached show a much better reference for shot placement with a bow on a Cape buffalo....

22-Mar-22
So Is the true frontal recommended on Cape Buffalo with a bow??

22-Mar-22

Altitude Sickness 's embedded Photo
Altitude Sickness 's embedded Photo
The chest and ribs are at an angle not flat. The father forward you go on the chest the narrower it is. Also note how the ribs are at an angle. To impact a rib straight on. The best angle is quartering too. Hard quartering away shots may allow the broadhead to skip or be deflected, losing energy. I shot my bull with Ken in between the blue and the brown to it’s left. Quartering too at a similar body position. One arrow kill no bullets needed.

22-Mar-22

Altitude Sickness 's embedded Photo
Altitude Sickness 's embedded Photo

22-Mar-22

Altitude Sickness 's embedded Photo
Altitude Sickness 's embedded Photo

22-Mar-22

Altitude Sickness 's embedded Photo
Altitude Sickness 's embedded Photo

22-Mar-22
Ken just curious, how many buffalo do you say you’d average in a year that only take one arrow to put them down?? Just curious. I fell like the number is probably very low due to their sheer size and toughness, feel most would require a 500 or the like to rip into them.

23-Mar-22
Thanks for the info Altitude

From: t-roy
23-Mar-22
Altitude…..can you explain what we’re looking at, in your last pic? Kinda looks a little bit like a 2-blade through a rib, but that’s just a WAG on my part.

23-Mar-22
That’s correct and Iron Will 250 through the rib. Impacted at 90 degrees to the rib Delivering all the energy towards the vitals. Instead of at an angled rib

23-Mar-22
Full disclosure. I’ve only hunted them twice, and only killed one Buffalo so I’m no expert.

I’m sure Ken or a good Buff PH would say with a heavy enough draw weight, and arrow weight a quartering away will work. Broad side is probably the best compromise. If the archer isn’t confident in his accuracy and pushing near those leg bones.

23-Mar-22
Quartering on is the best shot angle with a bow, broadside is second. Quartering away is a no. You need to help your arrow work so take the shot where the bone structure is thinnest and which presents the easiest path to the vitals. That’s quartering on. Frontal shots have the potential to deflect off the sternum and I’ve seen it happen. The result was a partial heart shot that needed a rifle to finish it. I shot it myself. Bowhunting buffalo is tricky. Don’t get your equipment advise from a pro shop or others that don’t do this for a living. Use 950 grain arrows to 1200 grains. COC solid steel head like the Iron Will.

23-Mar-22

Ken Moody Safaris's embedded Photo
Ken Moody Safaris's embedded Photo
Here’s your quarry.

From: Dale06
23-Mar-22
MaPaDeerslayer, you ask a question that doesn’t often get asked or answered. I’m familiar with three archery Cape buffalo hunts, mine and two friends. All three were finished with a rifle. The specifics of mine were 75# bow, 975 grain arrow, tipped with an Ashby 300 grain single bevel. I had two arrows in his chest, both broad side, but poor penetration, 15-20” or so. We tracked him and found him standing, head down, blood dripping from mouth and nose. It was 15 minutes till darkness and my PH said if he goes into that thick stuff, we are not going in after him till morning. So we watched from 100 yards for five more minutes and no change. He was dead on his feet, but we were two hours by Land Rover from camp, so I took the PHs 404 Jeffrey and finished him. Part of the issue in my case was the Ashby BHs failed, the tip of one broke off and the other sheared as the end of the arrow. They also failed on some plaines game. I do not know the specifics of the other two guys buffalos.

23-Mar-22

From: x-man
23-Mar-22
3-Oclock on the blue dot....Money

From: Firehuntfish
23-Mar-22
"So Is the true frontal recommended on Cape Buffalo with a bow??"

A true frontal shot with a bow on a Cape buffalo is a viable option... Not a recommendation... Quartering to is an option, not a recommendation... Just like a frontal shot, quartering to is a small window... I have personally seen well-placed frontal shots prove more lethal than quartering to or away.. You need to be confident that you can hit the right spot or simply don't take the shot. In my experiences, broadside offers the biggest target and margin for error for archery hunters.

I have not seen as many Cape buffalo taken as KM, but I have been party to enough archery buffalo hunts to see what works and what fails. I also agree adamantly that the set-up and equipment used should be recommended by your outfitter or PH that has extensive experience hunting dangerous game with archery equipment. In fact, if your outfitter does not inquire about and require the correct set-up and arrow build before your hunt, it's a red flag that they are not experienced archery buffalo hunters... During the actual Cape buffalo hunt is not the time for equipment experimentation and theory.. Lot's of African PHs/outfitters will offer a Cape buffalo hunt with a bow, but in reality, very few have the actual experience to pull it off competently and safely...

23-Mar-22

From: Firehuntfish
23-Mar-22
"Broadside offers the opportunity to hit a rib square on and impede penetration to the point of in effectiveness. If you get between the ribs a 400 grain arrow will work. If not, potential trouble regardless of arrow weight. Quartering on is the best option."

Will agree to disagree on this one.. The arrow build and bow set up for Cape buffalo should be predicated on the assumption that you will have to break through the ribs to hit the heart or lungs. If it cannot, you are not using the right set up to begin with regardless of your chosen aiming point.. Total arrow weight with heavy emphasis on front of center weight distribution and the correct broadhead design is the key to capitalizing on the momentum generated by that total arrow weight (900grn minimum with 25% or more FOC and a 2-blade, solid steel broadhead) which will result in the necessary penetration.

From: Dale06
23-Mar-22
“A Cape buffalo is dead when he’s in the skinning shed.” “Not until.” Thanks for that clarification.

From: Potro
23-Mar-22
Brown dot

23-Mar-22

23-Mar-22

From: Firehuntfish
23-Mar-22
"As you yourself wounded the buffalo you shot broadside, you know that these animals don’t care about anyone’s opinions on equipment options."

LOL.. Yep, and since then killed 2 more with single arrows and broadside shots with complete pass-throughs of the arrows through both sides of the ribs... I watched one stand where it was shot like it was never hit, bleed out and die in less than 5 minutes. The other ran maybe a hundred yards before piling up... Same exact set up and arrow build as the first time, just much better shot placement the second and third time around...

You are certainly entitled to your opinions based on your experiences. I have had different experiences and witnessed different results especially in regard to a broadside shot on a Cape buffalo. That being said, I do not now, nor have I ever recommended set ups or arrow builds to dangerous game hunters based on opinions. When it comes to these set-ups there are very few effective options available, and I recommend only what I have seen work consistently based on a dozen archery buffalo hunts I have personally been a part of and another 50 or so archery hunted buffalo I have seen back at the skinning sheds... Those who have utilized the recommended set ups obviously had the best results. It would be interesting to hear from other African PHs and outfitters with extensive experience in hunting Cape buffalo with a bow to see if they agree with your preference of a quartering to shot over a broadside shot. In all honesty, you are the first that I have ever heard to prefer a quartering to over any other placement.. Maybe you are on to something that everyone else is not..

From: Dale06
23-Mar-22
Firehuntfish, what BH, arrow weight, and bow draw weight did you use on your pass throughs?

23-Mar-22

23-Mar-22

From: Firehuntfish
23-Mar-22
"Maybe you should spend 12 years or so in Zimbabwe and another 8 in Mozambique hunting buffalo and you’ll see them take the kind of punishment that has earned them their reputation. After that, you will have earned a qualified opinion."

And you are the judge of who gets to have a qualified opinion on here? LMFAO! I don't deny your experience, nor do I discount the value of your opinion on certain topics. However, your condescending arrogance is truly remarkable! It amazes me that you have elected yourself the "King of all things Africa" on this forum... Don't make the mistake of presuming to know me or what my personal experiences have been. You know precious little about me and where I have hunted... I don't need to have hunted Cape buffalo for 12 years in Zim or 8 in Moz to know that recommending a quartering to shot over a broadside shot is asinine... How many Cape buffalo have you personally killed with a bow? Maybe that's why you have to finish so many of your buffalo hunts with a rifle.. Maybe another 20 years in Africa and you'll figure it out...

From: Firehuntfish
23-Mar-22
"Not trying to sound like a dick"

Too late...!

23-Mar-22

23-Mar-22
Interesting thread, to say the least,,,,,, I may jump out of airplanes at one time in my life, but do not think I have the go nads, to shoot buff, with a bow,,,, just being honest,,,,

From: speedgoat
24-Mar-22
What’s up with some of Ken’s posts having nothing in them but there seem to be responses? Am I missing something???

From: speedgoat
24-Mar-22
What’s up with some of Ken’s posts having nothing in them but there seem to be responses? Am I missing something???

24-Mar-22
Yes, I deleted them. No need to get into a pissing match on such a serious subject. No upside.

From: Ollie
24-Mar-22
Too many “experts” that have never hunted dangerous big game with bow trying to tell us what does and does not work.

From: Matt
24-Mar-22
Silencing the people who have the most knowledge/experience on a topic seems to be the new norm. This will probably end well.....

24-Mar-22
I really appreciate Ken’s in put

From: APauls
24-Mar-22
That's too bad. While I'll most likely never hunt Cape Buff's it was an interesting thread. Very much appreciated Ken's obviously experienced input. He only does it for a living. I read all the responses before they were deleted and at no point found any to be offensive.

24-Mar-22
Some take offense when they know someone is better than them :)

From: speedgoat
24-Mar-22
I would have liked to read Ken’s input since I’m headed after Buffalo in July.

From: speedgoat
24-Mar-22
What’s up with some of Ken’s posts having nothing in them but there seem to be responses? Am I missing something???

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