First off this "bull" had recently become a steer which figured into him getting into trouble. A friend of mine has a small herd of Scottish Hyland cattle that he runs on a fairly remote property that is surrounded by a lake and miles of thick bush. The herd mostly runs wild, but they will come out for salt and in the winter for feed. The cows are mostly gentle (unconcerned is maybe a better term). and even the bulls are usually not mean. They have little contact with humans and what they do have is non-threatening. The guy just likes having them around so they don't get vet checked or branded and inoculated or de-horned. They just go around eating and surviving like they were meant to. Tough buggers and they can live where regular cattle would starve, plus they browse when the snow gets deep.
The normal procedure for my Buddy is to keep a bull calf or two for breeding. A two year old bull does the breeding and then shortly after that the farmer next door castrates him and he gets to be a steer for another year or so. If left intact for more than a couple years they get ornery and possessive and can be harder to have around. So shortly after having his heyday with the girls this bull got his turn with Mister Snips. The capture and wasn't that smooth and maybe having his balls removed didn't help either, but he really didn't like people that much anymore.
He was a good size by now and got to be a bit of a bully with the younger "still actually bulls". So the decision was made to take him and a cow to another friend's place on five fenced acres. Well, if losing his nuts influenced his character it sure didn't help to get tricked into thinking a trailer was a feed bin either. He didn't like the trailer. They had wisely delivered the cow to their new home previously, hoping he'd step out of the trailer and fall in gentle love with both her and the pasture. And actually once he put some yards between him and the trailer, he seemed not bad. He wasn't going to eat out of anyone's hand, but he wasn't trying to kill anybody either. But it soon became apparent that it wasn't really safe for the kids to use the property either. There was another place down the road a mile that would take them. That fellow showed up with a stout rope and a tractor and led them to their newest home. The trailer was out of the question!
It went downhill from there as the steer pretty quick went awol taking his lady with him. Fences didn't seem to bother him much and for a while they kept tabs on him from reports other farmers. The cow liked company and tried to join the beef cattle and he would hang around too. It was obvious this was not sustainable and trying to herd him just resulted in him running a fence and getting into the bush. The decision was made to make him into burger. I got offered the job.
The plan was to wait until he was with other cattle to calm him and he did start hanging around one small herd. I got called and checked him out a couple of times before one time it looked like I could execute a plan and a steer. The herd was slowly following a fence line next to fairly thick bush and I managed to get ahead of them using the bush as cover and crouched in wait. He always trailed, so I should have a clear shot. The plan worked perfect and at twenty yards I buried a Thunderhead tipped arrow right to the fletch on what looked like a perfect shot!
I shot from my knees and stayed that way and was sure he hadn't seen me, but I admit to some instant fear that the bugger would charge the fence and hit the bush with me right in his path! Strangely he ran about about fifty yards toward the middle of the field and then started a slow plod for another hundred yards, then he stopped. And just stood there. And just stood there. I started to to walk out to him but he turned and started that slow plod again for twenty yards. By now the the farmer came down the fence line on his ATV and advised to not run him off. He wanted him dead in the field.
It seemed like ten minutes that the steer stood there, his heading slowly sinking until it nearly touched the ground. With his wide body and very short legs splayed out a bit and his knees locked we were sure he was dead but just couldn't fall over. The farmer circled way out around him on the ATV and I walked towards his broadside thinking to shot him again. At about twenty yards and ready to draw I could see his legs start to quake a bit and then one gave way sending him to the ground without so much as another quiver. It really reminded me of the muskox I shot. Just friggin tough and slow to die.
We had a couple more adventurous "hunts" for a couple bigger ones the next year. Wiley buggers when they don't trust you!
Dang good read and man that thing is wide!
Good luck, Robb
I was really looking for a scrub bull when I was in Australia a few years ago, but we never could find one.
ki-ke, I kept the skull and actually it's still on my roof. Never could get the horns to come off. Somebody else kept the hide. The meat was split up, but I only took a couple of packs, not as good as moose but more fat.
One of the ones we killed the next year was older and much bigger and my buddy thought it would look really cool mounted. I recommended a taxidermist who is VERY slow, but VERY, VERY good and he dropped it off and we kinda forgot about it. He had changed houses and started a family by the time he got a call that it was done. Not given to much practical forethought he did the four hour drive to the taxidermist which happens to be his home town also. After some visiting with friends he went to get his mount. Well this thing is huge!! Luckily he had a pickup. He had already convinced his wife that it should hang in the bedroom so home he went, her having no real concept of the imposing size of the thing when she agreed. There was some discussion.
But being the man that he is and his wife being a very sweet and tolerant person it did hang in the bedroom before eventually getting moved to a less commanding position. Hopefully I can find a pic of it.
Over the last 40 years we have killed a number of Bison and a handful of Longhorn Bulls with clients. With the exception of one Longhorn and two Bison the ones killed By bow and arrow all did what yours did after being shot..
That would have been a cool hide to have
And I remember your first cryptic story about shooting the farmer's cow and getting some flack here for posting it...Haha!
How does the meat compare to beef cattle?
Cracked me up, too! Great story, Rod...as usual.
Cool story! Thanks for sharing.