Mathews Inc.
When should I recover this deer
Whitetail Deer
Contributors to this thread:
Jack2234 27-Nov-23
Guardian hunter 27-Nov-23
Bou'bound 27-Nov-23
Straight Shooter 27-Nov-23
Scoot 27-Nov-23
Jack2234 27-Nov-23
Jack2234 27-Nov-23
wildwilderness 27-Nov-23
2Wild Bill 27-Nov-23
Jack2234 27-Nov-23
Jack2234 27-Nov-23
Ambush 27-Nov-23
carcus 27-Nov-23
Deebz 27-Nov-23
fdp 27-Nov-23
Fuzzy 27-Nov-23
JohnMC 27-Nov-23
btnbuck 27-Nov-23
Catscratch 27-Nov-23
Jack2234 27-Nov-23
Jack2234 27-Nov-23
fdp 27-Nov-23
Ambush 27-Nov-23
Brotsky 27-Nov-23
badbull 27-Nov-23
Rgiesey 27-Nov-23
Michael 27-Nov-23
wildwilderness 27-Nov-23
TMac 27-Nov-23
Shuteye 27-Nov-23
Hunts_with_stick 27-Nov-23
Jack2234 27-Nov-23
Ambush 27-Nov-23
Missouribreaks 27-Nov-23
Bow Bullet 27-Nov-23
SBH 27-Nov-23
Charlie Rehor 27-Nov-23
scentman 27-Nov-23
Bowboy 27-Nov-23
fuzzy 27-Nov-23
Treeline 27-Nov-23
Straight Shooter 27-Nov-23
JHP 27-Nov-23
Jack2234 27-Nov-23
Ambush 27-Nov-23
JohnMC 27-Nov-23
Hunts_with_stick 27-Nov-23
Bou'bound 27-Nov-23
fdp 27-Nov-23
wildwilderness 27-Nov-23
Jack2234 27-Nov-23
Lewis 27-Nov-23
Jack2234 27-Nov-23
Candor 27-Nov-23
Duke 27-Nov-23
Jack2234 27-Nov-23
12yards 28-Nov-23
fuzzy 28-Nov-23
midwest 28-Nov-23
fuzzy 28-Nov-23
Smtn10PT 28-Nov-23
Ambush 28-Nov-23
Buckdeer 28-Nov-23
Ambush 28-Nov-23
Scoot 28-Nov-23
Bou'bound 28-Nov-23
Brotsky 28-Nov-23
Shiloh 28-Nov-23
fuzzy 28-Nov-23
APauls 28-Nov-23
12yards 28-Nov-23
Jack Harris 28-Nov-23
scentman 28-Nov-23
Jack2234 28-Nov-23
Missouribreaks 28-Nov-23
HUNT MAN 28-Nov-23
Catscratch 28-Nov-23
Ambush 28-Nov-23
fuzzy 28-Nov-23
scentman 28-Nov-23
fastflight 28-Nov-23
Treeline 28-Nov-23
Corax_latrans 28-Nov-23
Supernaut 28-Nov-23
320Bull 28-Nov-23
Jack2234 28-Nov-23
fuzzy 28-Nov-23
APauls 28-Nov-23
JohnMC 28-Nov-23
bowhunter24 28-Nov-23
Ace 28-Nov-23
Bou'bound 28-Nov-23
Aspen Ghost 28-Nov-23
12yards 28-Nov-23
Old School 28-Nov-23
Canepole 28-Nov-23
Mhg825 28-Nov-23
Jack2234 28-Nov-23
Jack2234 28-Nov-23
Jethro 28-Nov-23
Canepole 28-Nov-23
fdp 28-Nov-23
fuzzy 28-Nov-23
Jack2234 28-Nov-23
Bou'bound 28-Nov-23
TMac 28-Nov-23
fuzzy 28-Nov-23
Huntcell 28-Nov-23
BC 28-Nov-23
midwest 28-Nov-23
Lee 28-Nov-23
Jack2234 28-Nov-23
scentman 28-Nov-23
fuzzy 28-Nov-23
Hunts_with_stick 28-Nov-23
midwest 28-Nov-23
Buffalo1 28-Nov-23
Candor 28-Nov-23
Ace 28-Nov-23
Bow Bullet 28-Nov-23
Jack2234 28-Nov-23
APauls 28-Nov-23
Bow Bullet 28-Nov-23
ryanrc 29-Nov-23
T-rex 29-Nov-23
W 29-Nov-23
12yards 29-Nov-23
Grey Ghost 29-Nov-23
Jack2234 29-Nov-23
Buskill 29-Nov-23
APauls 29-Nov-23
4nolz@work 29-Nov-23
KHNC 29-Nov-23
Jack2234 29-Nov-23
Jack2234 29-Nov-23
fuzzy 30-Nov-23
Paul@thefort 30-Nov-23
Old Reb 30-Nov-23
From: Jack2234
27-Nov-23

Jack2234's embedded Photo
Jack2234's embedded Photo
Hi guys,

Just shot my first whitetail with a bow. It looked like I hit him somewhere just behind the lungs. He was shot in the middle of an open field. After I shot him he bedded down 20yds away, 5 min later he got up, walked 10yds and bedded down again. He repeated this about 4 times until he got to a tree line, and I lost line of sight. The arrow looks like this and it smelled pretty bad, there were also some guts on the ground where I hit him. I backed out quietly and I am thinking about going tonight, 12 hours after the shot, to recover him. What do you guys think?

27-Nov-23
Spot on

From: Bou'bound
27-Nov-23
You will find him then

27-Nov-23
Looks like liver shot but if it smelled like guts you hit guts in some way. You’re doing it right, 12 hours to be safe.

From: Scoot
27-Nov-23
I would wait about 8 hours. But... how are predator numbers in your area? If really high, maybe don't wait that long. I'm guessing temps are plenty cold to not need to worry about spoilage? If possible, I prefer to track in daylight. If 12 hours put you into the dark, I'd probably try to get out there before it got dark. But, I wouldn't go sooner than 6 hours and 8 is definitely better. Twelve is better yet, but it'll be dark then (I'm guessing) and like I said- it's easier to find blood and a deer in the light. Go slowly and keep looking ahead for a deer. Make sure you have your bow, just in case another arrow is needed. Good luck!

From: Jack2234
27-Nov-23
preadators arent a problem, the temp will be btw 45-55 all day with cloud cover

From: Jack2234
27-Nov-23
preadators arent a problem, the temp will be btw 45-55 all day with cloud cover

27-Nov-23
What time exactly did you shoot this morning? Did you see blood when he stood and walked? How did he look walking? Limping?

I am with the others and would look before sunset and the dark. So much easier in sunlight to spot stuff and faint sign.

Good luck, let us know when you find it. I bet you have a good chance!

From: 2Wild Bill
27-Nov-23
Did you find the deer?

I wasn't worried about predators, until I saw you were from Texas. Austin, Dallas area?

From: Jack2234
27-Nov-23
It was limping a bit with its back hunched, moving slowly

From: Jack2234
27-Nov-23
I have not gone out to find him yet, Im going to go an hour before sunset. I am hunting in kendalia.

From: Ambush
27-Nov-23
What broadhead and size?

You definitely hit some organs going by the blood on the arrow and guts by your description. So yes, he’s a dead deer bedded. He is likely in the first decent cover inside that treeline. Waiting is always smart and you should, but I’m guessing you’ll find him quick and stiff because he died within an hour.

But don’t be like a lot of other “what’s my chances” posters that never come back to finish the story.

Good luck and post a pic or two!

From: carcus
27-Nov-23
Looks like you got some liver, hopefully gut too by the sounds of it, you should find it, especially if there is snow on the ground

From: Deebz
27-Nov-23
You've definitely got some level of gut shot. Hopefully there's liver involved and he's already dead, but your plan is spot on. Give him the 12 hours and go in slow with lights. Follow blood carefully and keep watch ahead. If you see him with his head up, hold back and make sure you don't jump him out of a bed. Good luck!

From: fdp
27-Nov-23
"somewhere just behind the lungs".....that's likely a gut shot. I personally would be looking for other sign now. Was the deer broadside or quartering ?

From: Fuzzy
27-Nov-23
come back after you find him and we'll tell you. lol

From: JohnMC
27-Nov-23
Make sure you come back and let us know if you found or not. If your description of what you saw and found are accurate and you didn't not bump him, I'd guess you find him not much farther than you last saw him. Assuming you shot first thing this morning what is an hour before dark? 10 hours? If so that is when I would go look. If in that hour you don't find him close to where you last saw him I'd back out and come back in morning.

From: btnbuck
27-Nov-23
Was he broadside or quartering to or away from you? Which side did your arrow go in? Did he walk away "hunched" up with it's tail sporadically waiving side to side? I'm guessing it entered the left and out the right side. Lots of blood on that arrow. Looks like a solid liver shot. It's almost impossible to hit the liver without hitting the paunch. I've watched them hit like that all day before and if they bed down it tends to "seal" the wound and it takes longer to expire. Other times they can expire within an hour. Going early is not worth the risk.

That said, the longer you can wait the better. It will probably relocate several time but not go far if it's not pushed by something.

As said above, it's easier to find them in daylight, but the more time the better, you don't want to rush it. 6 hours is kinda early, 8 hours is better, 12 hours is better. It won't spoil in those temps with no sun.

Let us know how it goes and good luck.

From: Catscratch
27-Nov-23
A gut only shot can live several days. A gut and liver should be dead in 12hrs. I'd be sure to have something for a backup shot. IF he is still alive when you go to look it's likely he'll be stiff and hurting, slow to move out. I'd rather have my bow on the ready than not.

Good luck and let us know how it turns out!

From: Jack2234
27-Nov-23
he was slightly quartering away, when i released he turned hard, so when the arrow hit him the deer was almost in a "U" shape. I was using a g5 megameat

From: Jack2234
27-Nov-23
he was slightly quartering away, when i released he turned hard, so when the arrow hit him the deer was almost in a "U" shape. I was using a g5 megameat

From: fdp
27-Nov-23
So with that body position you really don't know where he was hit, or how much deer the arrow traveled through.

Personally I'd be looking at least to where I lost sight of him and maybe further depending on what I found,

I don't know what the coyote/feral dog problem is like around Kendalia any more, but around here they have become prolific, and they don't wait until dark.

From: Ambush
27-Nov-23
That’s a big cut and a pass through. That’s a dead deer.

27-Nov-23
Looks like liver, With that BH 4-6 hrs is plenty

From: Brotsky
27-Nov-23
That's a dead deer likely right inside that tree line. That dark red blood speaks liver hit to me. You got some live and some guts, that will make that deer very sick in short order. You're doing the right thing, give him 12 hours and you'll find him not far from where you lsot sight of him.

From: badbull
27-Nov-23
Interesting thread with experienced responses. I hope that you find this one and are able to give us the final details.

From: Rgiesey
27-Nov-23
Our way is overnight. With thick coyotes 12 hours is a good idea. Sneak In looking for a follow up shot.

From: Michael
27-Nov-23
Sounds like you have been making all the right decisions so far. I bet you find him as soon as you go in and look.

We all want to put the arrow in the right spot and end things quickly. Sometimes things happen. With that being said when a shot is back it’s better to have a big cut like what you have. If the deer isn’t dead already it will be soon.

27-Nov-23
What time did you shoot?

With the g5 megameat BH thats a huge cut- 2" 3 blade! probably find the deer sooner than later

From: TMac
27-Nov-23
You will find him not far from where he went into woodline….patience is key….nice work at heeding the temptation to go after him to soon…..report back with pics….

From: Shuteye
27-Nov-23
I would guess the deer is dead right inside the tree line.

27-Nov-23
Always try and get another arrow in them. Not sure if you tried or not, but a gut shot animal is a dead deer. Should be dead in 8 hours or so. He was hurting bad. What time did you shoot it?

From: Jack2234
27-Nov-23
6:40am, it has been 8.5 hrs

From: Ambush
27-Nov-23
Go get your deer.

27-Nov-23
Good luck !

From: Bow Bullet
27-Nov-23
Looks like you're getting about the same opinions and advice over on AT. Let us know when you find him.

From: SBH
27-Nov-23
Sounds like a dead deer to me and shouldn't be far from that last bed. You did everything right in waiting. Post pics, hope you get him.

27-Nov-23
Congratulations on your first whitetail kill. Should be found. Good luck.

From: scentman
27-Nov-23
Sounds like your on the right track, liver or pounch is a dead deer... I once came upon my liver shot buck, he was on his last breath after 12 hrs. Patience your best recovery skill. scentman

From: Bowboy
27-Nov-23
Wonder if he found the deer?

From: fuzzy
27-Nov-23
He's in Texas so he's got a few minutes of tracking light left. Impatiently waiting to hear.

From: Treeline
27-Nov-23
Should be a dead deer by now. Big hole, full penetration. Should be real close to the last place you saw him. Look for a live deer and go slow, though.

27-Nov-23
Funny I don’t never heard of a deer in the “U shape “ position. Like I said time is your friend no need to push. Agree with some he will be dead in his bed not far, that’s ONLY if you don’t bump him.

From: JHP
27-Nov-23
Deer will not bed down that quick after a shot unless he is hurt bad. He won't be far.

From: Jack2234
27-Nov-23
the deer, 10hrs after, was not dead, I crept up on where I saw him bed down this morning really slowly, some does spooked and he did with them. He looked like he was hit right btw liver and guts. There was a mass of guts hanging out of the deer along with chunks of blood. He ran off but was limping hard and is close to dying think. I have to go take an exam and can be back in about 15hrs to look again, hopefully meet is not spoiled by then.

From: Ambush
27-Nov-23
Wow! Well I was dead wrong on that one. Good luck tomorrow and hope you get a full recovery.

From: JohnMC
27-Nov-23
Tough critters. How far did he run after got up? If he was still able to get up guess he live some of those 15 hours

27-Nov-23
Crazy! Post pictures tomorrow

From: Bou'bound
27-Nov-23
All you got was guts Argument could have been made for pushing him now given guts dragging out and the amount of time passed as well as the fact you will not be back for another 15 hours and this is in Texas. Tough call. I think you’ll find him as a spoiled partially consumed carcass and salvage the rack.

From: fdp
27-Nov-23
Gun season is open. In that situation I would have taken a rifle if the land owner would allowed it in case of that very scenario.

Hopefully you can find him, but it's not likely.

27-Nov-23
If guts are hanging out and night coming I think I might have pushed and done everything to get another arrow in him, anywhere.

That said he will die.... hope you can find him later. keep us posted

From: Jack2234
27-Nov-23
He ran about 30 to 40 yards fell down and then got up and kept running

From: Lewis
27-Nov-23
Ouch ??

From: Jack2234
27-Nov-23
He ran about 30 to 40 yards fell down and then got up and kept running

From: Candor
27-Nov-23
Go get him in the morning.

In the situation you last described, I would do one of two things, immediately back out or keep after him and run him down/push him. It would depend on the cover/surroundings, how fast he was able to run initially and just a read of his capacity. A factor selfishly would also be how far I was having to travel to get back to the spot.

If I had a creek or river with a steep bank I would be inclined to push him. Big clear areas, i would push him. I probably would be toting a shotgun or rifle though too. Even if I didn't have one I would still consider pushing him.

I suspect gangrene is setting in and his body is starting to lock up. If I had a bunch of super thick cover where blood would be difficult to find and I couldn't see him from 50+ yards out I would back out.

There are going to be lots on here that hate my advice, but it works if you know the property well and think he is locking up. Risky, yes, but i have never had it be unsuccessful. But you got to be confident in your read. Good luck.

From: Duke
27-Nov-23
I would say liver and guts from what you described and arrow photo provided. More time you can let be the better your odds weighing in predators. Tough critters.

Keep us posted!

From: Jack2234
27-Nov-23

From: 12yards
28-Nov-23
Good luck man! Hope you find him!

From: fuzzy
28-Nov-23
Thanks for checking back in. I'm rooting for you.

From: midwest
28-Nov-23
I think you did everything right and will find him not far from where you last saw him. Hopefully, the meat is salvageable but 15 more hours is not good.

From: fuzzy
28-Nov-23
Midwest I agree. I also emphasize with how hard it was to pull off the trail and take care of business, when the hunters instinct is to stay on the trail. Keep us posted. Looking forward to pics and full details.

From: Smtn10PT
28-Nov-23
He will be dead and not far away. I was part of tracking two gut shot mature bucks this season and both were still alive 18 hours after the hit. Both required follow up shots.

From: Ambush
28-Nov-23
I’m still puzzled by the arrow being completely covered in dark red blood. Where did that come from?

From: Buckdeer
28-Nov-23
That dark red blood is sign of liver hit

From: Ambush
28-Nov-23
^^^ But it seems now it was a low and only gut hit?

From: Scoot
28-Nov-23
Sounds like mostly guts, but maybe nicked the liver? Blood that dark suggests liver to me, but the outcome of his first search suggests only a guy hit. I dunno! But... I'm going with mostly a gut hit and a small ding to the liver. I'll be curios to hear the end result. Sounds like there's a good chance for a positive outcome still.

Jack, good luck on your exam and good luck finding him! Once the shot was made, you've handled this very well since. I hope you're rewarded with a good outcome!

From: Bou'bound
28-Nov-23
Live with a liver hit after 10 hours and running. If liver was hit it was probably immaterial to the other stuff he hit.

From: Brotsky
28-Nov-23
Tough animal! Been on a couple of these rodeos all with satisfactory outcomes . You’ll get him, just hope you can save the meat!

From: Shiloh
28-Nov-23
the liver lies on either side of the paunch, so I would think with that much blood on the arrow it would have had to go through the back lobe of the liver on its way out. Dead deer and surprised it lived as long as it did.

From: fuzzy
28-Nov-23
Liver lobe versus liver center is a big difference.

From: APauls
28-Nov-23
You'll get him eventually. You could either wait and come back to him dead, or try and kill him now. Sounds like you're coming back which will work. If you circled around pretending you didn't see him walking "past him" on a tangent that takes you past bow range he might just watch you get closer and you can get another arrow in him. With him hurting that bad, I'd try one way or another to try and get another arrow in at that point. First choice is usually trying to stalk in without him noticing but when they are hurt that bad sometimes they'll just duck head and hope you don't see them. Brain won't be working 100% either at this point.

My only gut shot experience like that was in 2020. Temp was -20 and I came back 5 hours later. He jumped up and ran. Came back 17 hours after shot and I thought he was dead until I saw his chest move as he was still breathing. But no other signs of life. That was in extreme temps, after a Rage Trypan. Also had guts hanging out of the body - so very similar. He will be toast eventually. One thing I've learned from my experience and close friends is that gut hits can take extremely long. A wide cut like the megameat or Rage increases the odds like crazy. But they can go for days.

From: 12yards
28-Nov-23
I saw a liver hit buck on one of the popular hunting shows. I think they shot it again still barely alive three days later. I'm pretty sure that is rare, but not impossible. Hit in the guts though usually don't live that long. Hopefully he finds it.

From: Jack Harris
28-Nov-23
looking for update please? good luck

From: scentman
28-Nov-23
Yes, update please... even if negative you won't be judged because you followed through and that goes along way.

From: Jack2234
28-Nov-23

Jack2234's embedded Photo
Jack2234's embedded Photo
Jack2234's embedded Photo
Jack2234's embedded Photo
My buddy went to have a look this morning and found em in a steep creek bed about 70 yds from where he was bumped. The way he described the entry, the arrow was low, about 2/3 of the way up the his body, just at the end of the ribs. He said the meat was questionable so he left the body but took the head to make a euro.These are the only pics he got. Thanks again guys for taking the time to help me out!

28-Nov-23
Congratulations, glad you made a recovery.

From: HUNT MAN
28-Nov-23
Glad you got some closure

From: Catscratch
28-Nov-23
Thanks for the update! Glad you got some closure on him, bummer there isn't a freezer full of meat for your tag.

From: Ambush
28-Nov-23
You did your best with a bad situation. And we all learn from our own and other’s experiences. Thanks for coming back with the honest conclusion. And nice buck !

From: fuzzy
28-Nov-23
Good deal! Sorry you lost the meat but it's a learning experience. Good job staying on it.

From: scentman
28-Nov-23
Proud of you for sharing your experience.

From: fastflight
28-Nov-23
Congrats on the nice buck. Although I think you did everything right to find the deer I would like to know how the questionable meat was determined? Doesn't even look like he gutted it. No apparent predators chewing on it either.

From: Treeline
28-Nov-23
Congratulations on a nice buck and thank you for sharing the whole story. Definitely a good learning experience.

28-Nov-23
The liver is a relatively low-pressure circuit; there are some big pipes in there — some of the very biggest. If you can clip a few of them. But it’s a very large organ made of largely of very fine vessels, so blood on the arrow is kind of like water after you’ve shot through a wet sponge. More important whether the hose is running,

But that would have shown on the ground.

I guess I’m not the only one who would have gone for a follow-up shot right away, because going right down like that sounds like a sock in the gut. Yes, it’s an all-or-nothing kind of a call to play it that way, but (JMO) there’s no right answer. Just a matter of priorities and odds. If you can manage to spot the animal, I do like the advice of acting like you don’t see the deer and closing within range while it holds tight. I once walked right up onto a half a dozen does which finally flushed like quail at maybe 2-3 yards. Of course, I wasn’t “acting”… They knew I had no idea they were there, but I guess they didn’t want to get stepped on…. LOL

From: Supernaut
28-Nov-23
Glad you got closure, bummer about the empty freezer.

Good learning experience for all of us, thanks for sharing it and thanks for actually coming back to update us.

From: 320Bull
28-Nov-23
Nice buck, congratulations! Thanks for posting and good job following up you played it as best as you could IMO. Curios if you have any take-aways on the shot going bad? When I was starting out I had some mishaps and honestly I am sure there will be more. They are almost impossible to avoid completely. What really helped me was looking back and learning from them. The guys that shrug their shoulders and carry on don't seem to get any better with clean kills. The guys that spend some time rethinking it and being honest with themselves are gonna benefit from it. And please don't take this as me saying its your fault because I am not. Just encouraging you to use it as a learning tool for the future.

Thanks for sharing the honest story that says allot about the person you are!!

From: Jack2234
28-Nov-23

Jack2234's embedded Photo
Jack2234's embedded Photo
Yea I have thought about it quite a bit. I could have put in more time at the range, but I dont think that was much of an issue. It was more of being so excited and full of adrenaline that I was trebling a bit when i took the shot. The shot was 15yds and this is what my groups were looking like at 25 the night before. I think next time I need to wait for a bit longer and try to relax before shooting.

From: fuzzy
28-Nov-23
Good assessment, I'll add pick a spot and focus on it. We've all been there.

From: APauls
28-Nov-23
Thanks for the update!! Congrats on finding it.

Does anyone know the science on meat spoilage? I would think the clock only really starts after death other than parts touching gut spillage. So I’d be really surprised that the whole thing is garbage. I’d still expect fronts, neck, backstraps and most of the hinds to be usable. Trim heavy if any smell.

But all in all for recovery I think you played it well and thanks a million for coming back to update us! I’d just be shocked that the whole deer is rancid

From: JohnMC
28-Nov-23
Any one that says they weren't excited to the point of possibly screwing up one way or another on their first deer/big game animal is likely lying. That is big reason we do it. I still get excited and probably killed well north of 50 critters with my bow.

My first archery deer back in high school, I was probably 25 feet up in a climber. Deer was almost underneath me. I hit him in the very back of backstrap and came out in his hindquarter. Lots of stuff I did terribly wrong. Lucked out and found him. But I was so nervous I barely aimed, terrible angle and just got lucky. Take a little time to learn from each opportunity you get and you will make less and less mistakes over time.

From: bowhunter24
28-Nov-23
Most of us still get deer fever and nothing wrong with that but it reminds us to slow down and go through a shot sequence and aim small miss small. Nothing can prevent a deer from doing what they do and sometimes they result in something like you just had. Best part is you got to shoot your 1st deer congrats! Keep following some of the killers here on Bowsite and you can become one too!

From: Ace
28-Nov-23
Congrats on following up and recovering the buck.

Knowing when to shoot is almost as important as knowing how to shoot.

You’re Plenty good on targets, with experience you’ll get better at controlling the shakes, knowing when to draw and waiting for a relaxed deer.

Keep at it, it’s a learning game, and if you’re like us you’ll make mistakes but you’ll love every minute of it!

From: Bou'bound
28-Nov-23
Good Job Good thread thanks

From: Aspen Ghost
28-Nov-23
It is extremely likely that most of the meat was still good and it should have been recovered this morning with the head. The deer was alive at sunset last night. It was found fairly early this morning. I applaud the friend for helping find the deer but he obviously didn't want to do the work of full recovery. I'm sure the deer stank from the gut shot but that stank doesn't indicate a problem with the meat. It's almost certain that the backstrap and top quarters were still good when found. The quarters on the ground might be iffy but should have been checked too.

My intent is not to criticize the OP but to make sure other newbies aren't misinformed by this thread.

From: 12yards
28-Nov-23
I think I would have still tried to salvage the meat. But good job on recovering. Nice buck!

From: Old School
28-Nov-23
Thanks for coming back and posting about the outcome. You’re the first guy I can remember doing that.

Glad you found him, sorry you lost the meat.

From: Canepole
28-Nov-23
Nice Buck! Maybe I missed it but what part of Texas were you hunting in?

From: Mhg825
28-Nov-23
Could you have rescheduled the exam ? Think the animal deserves a better plan to recover.

From: Jack2234
28-Nov-23
I am hunting near Boerne

From: Jack2234
28-Nov-23
I could not have sadly, thats the first thing I tried to do

From: Jethro
28-Nov-23
I thought it was well played right up until the call was made on meat being bad. From pics it appears that decision was made without pulling any hide. I agree, buddy didn't want to do the work.

From: Canepole
28-Nov-23
Jack, we have our 13%ers here too!

From: fdp
28-Nov-23
Some lessons learned from this one I would hope. If the deer moved at the shot like you described, there's no way to anticipate, or prepare for that, so that couldn't be helped. Always take the opportunity to put another arrow in an animal if you have it, every time. Waiting isn't always the best plan, even with a shot like that. Make sure you have time to actually close the loop on a hunt when you take a shot. That means having the time to make the recovery. If it's as cool as it was last night, it was in the low 40's here at my house on the Balcones Escarpment, so I'm sure it was in the 30's probably out there so I suspect that a percentage of the meat was still good. And leaving it is just a plain waste no matter how you look at it. Some will have been tainted by stomach contents and bile, but that would be the case with a shot like that no matter how long it took to recover it. But....sometimes lessons are hard.

From: fuzzy
28-Nov-23
I do agree that some meat was probably salvageable. I don't armchair quarterback that point though.

From: Jack2234
28-Nov-23
yea i think it was, getting back there after class the temp would have gotten up to almost 60 so would have been sketch at that point I think

From: Bou'bound
28-Nov-23
I don't know what is more congratulations worthy.

Getting your first deer or putting up a thread that went 91 posts before the first criticism of someone that nobody knows (the buddy) but you.. Lot's of people kill deer around here, but a thread like that is really something special.

From: TMac
28-Nov-23
Thanks for sharing and following up. Congrats on your first archery buck sorry you lost the meat.

From: fuzzy
28-Nov-23
Bou, I don't always agree with you, but when I do, you're exactly right ;)

From: Huntcell
28-Nov-23
“”took the head to make a euro””

Are you getting the Euro when it’s done?

From: BC
28-Nov-23
Good effort. Great buck too.

From: midwest
28-Nov-23
Thanks for keeping it real and congrats on the buck! Hope you stick around here! Got any opportunities for bowhunting hogs down there?

From: Lee
28-Nov-23
Just for your own sake I’d suggest you hike out there and open him up and take a look at what you hit. As far as the meat goes I used to live in south GA in much warmer temps than you described and left deer overnight with no ill effects. If you think about it, the only thing you eat on the inside is the tenderloins. Everything else is external. Almost assuredly the meat was fine. Too late now, learn from it and move on. Glad you got some closure.

Lee

From: Jack2234
28-Nov-23

Jack2234's embedded Photo
Jack2234's embedded Photo
yes, I found a good population of them right behind my dorm

From: scentman
28-Nov-23
Well young man one thing for sure is you have been a breath of fresh air here and for all intents and purposes the hardliners respected your will to finish the hunt... believe me, some would have never come back like you did and I'll bet your grades a pretty good to. ;0)

From: fuzzy
28-Nov-23
I hope you stick with us young man. Nice hog btw!

28-Nov-23
Nice

From: midwest
28-Nov-23
Heck yeah, Jack! Great hog!

From: Buffalo1
28-Nov-23
Glad you were able to bring closure to your deer hunt. Congrats.

From: Candor
28-Nov-23
Attaboy, Jack! Way to stick with it. Agree with Bull320 on deciding things to learn from in this process. As far as learning to stay calm through the shot, lots of different solutions. What I have found helpful to me is when I feel that anxiety coming on, I remind myself that "this is fun and what this is all about, and miss or kill it is all good." For whatever reason I have found this reassuring in that I think some of my anxiety is performance anxiety and it takes the pressure off and allows a failure to be okay. Which it is part of our growth.

Happy your buddy found the deer and hope you stay on this journey and it 15 years you are giving advice to others on here.

From: Ace
28-Nov-23

From: Bow Bullet
28-Nov-23
Way to stick with it and congrats on your first.

I do have a question though that I don't recall you mentioning. What did you do as far as tagging your buck? Meat bad or not, I would guess it's a requirement in Texas but I do not know the regulations there.

From: Jack2234
28-Nov-23
I have the digital license, so I had my friend take a pic and I submitted on the app

From: APauls
28-Nov-23
One thing learned for sure - Jack’s a good dude

From: Bow Bullet
28-Nov-23
"I have the digital license, so I had my friend take a pic and I submitted on the app"

[Thumbs up]

From: ryanrc
29-Nov-23
Nice first buck.bummer on the meat.

From: T-rex
29-Nov-23
Finally a great thread!

Thanks Jack and congrats on the buck and hog! And thanks Bowsite!

From: W
29-Nov-23
Glad y’all found him. Congrats.

From: 12yards
29-Nov-23
Jack, I've been bowhunting over 40 years and just promise, if you figure it out, to tell me how to always keep it together when a shot presents itself. LOL. Trust me, my buck fever has come and gone over the years. When I do good, I usually talk my way through it. When I do bad I attribute it to some anxiety and "wanting it too bad" and then my shot process gets rushed. When I tell myself it's ok if I don't kill this animal, I'm much more composed. It's important, IMO, to practice a ton so that when an animal comes your shot process is programmed in. You go into auto mode.

From: Grey Ghost
29-Nov-23
Thanks for the thread, Jack. Like others have said, I tend to think that the meat was most likely still good, but that's a tall ask to have a friend drag your buck out for you. I'm glad your friend found it, and at least you'll have a Euro mount to remember the experience.

Matt

From: Jack2234
29-Nov-23
Thanks again everybody for helping me out with all the advice. Its sucks that the meat went to waste but I learned a-lot for the next hunt. I guess it can only get better though haha.

From: Buskill
29-Nov-23
I’m super glad this deer was recovered but my favorite part of all this was the comment about considering delaying the exam in order to search for the deer. I’d love to see what that professor would say.

From: APauls
29-Nov-23
Thanks for the update!! Congrats on finding it.

Does anyone know the science on meat spoilage? I would think the clock only really starts after death other than parts touching gut spillage. So I’d be really surprised that the whole thing is garbage. I’d still expect fronts, neck, backstraps and most of the hinds to be usable. Trim heavy if any smell.

But all in all for recovery I think you played it well and thanks a million for coming back to update us! I’d just be shocked that the whole deer is rancid

From: 4nolz@work
29-Nov-23
Should have started a "is this meat ok?" thread for advice also. Smacks of cutting the head off and leaving the meat.Anyone local who finds it that knows you hunt there will think that's what you did.

From: KHNC
29-Nov-23
This same thread, and about the same number of posts is on AT as well. Guess he didnt trust yall here. :)

From: Jack2234
29-Nov-23
I didn’t think anyone would reply, so I put it on both lol

From: Jack2234
29-Nov-23
I think the meat was fine too, too bad it went to waste

From: fuzzy
30-Nov-23
4nolz, finally showed up on the thread, lol

From: Paul@thefort
30-Nov-23
Jack, Congrats on a fine buck. I know deer have been recovered at night but there is always a chance a wounded deer will vacate the area, especially if bumped, and travel farther then expected, thus, not found. Now , I have been bow hunting over 60 years and have made mistakes in trailing and making a few bad shots and decisions, ie, live and learn. In hind sight, I might have waited until morning to recover the deer but I was not there.

Best of luck on your next hunt and thanks for telling your story. My best, Paul

Here is my experience with an animal left over night and then recovered. On Sept 17, three years ago here in Colorado, I shot a bull elk at 6 pm and did not recover the elk until noon the following day. Very light brood trail. I expect the elk died quickly and was on the ground for the better part of 18 hours. The night time temp was not below freezing and the noon time temps was near 65. What gave me the location of the elk was that I smelled a "gut" smell when I got to within 75 yards of the elk and then followed that smell right to the elk that have traveled over 600 yards. I was able to process the elk, bag the meat and hang the bags in a nearby tree. Hiked back to camp and six hours later returned with a packer, retrieved the meat without loose any of it and then process it all at home. I did trim the bloody meat around the gut area. This is just to show that an animal left over night can be salvaged.

From: Old Reb
30-Nov-23
^^^^^ Jack, If you are getting advice from this guy, take it. I don't know him personally, but if you become a regular visitor to this site you will find that he is well respected.

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