You Shot a Deer. Here’s How to Find It.


The initial reaction will be similar to that of a gut-shot deer. If the shot is forward, the arrow will slide through the ham and paunch. If the hit is back, you’ll hit heavy muscle and maybe bone.


Your arrow will probably be covered with blood and will often break if it centers the ham. The blood trail will typically be substantial, and even profuse if you struck a major artery. Keep your fingers crossed.

Wait two to three hours and hope you hit one of those arteries.

Hint: The carotid artery branches into the femoral artery on either side of the deer’s hind leg. If you sever this, you will probably see blood spraying from the deer as it runs away. Although no one aims for the butt, this shot actually has high odds of easy recovery.


The initial reaction will be obvious. A whitetail that is spine shot will drop in its tracks. But it usually requires a follow-up shot.


Your arrow will likely lodge in heavy bone and break.

Wait only the amount of time it takes to make a follow up shot. Keep your cool and don’t hesitate. Get an arrow into the deer’s chest cavity from any available angle. And if it takes two more arrows, do it.

Hint: Your arrow will break off, leaving the broadhead lodged in heavy bone in all but the rarest of instances. If you value your fingers, don’t forget about that broadhead when removing the deer’s backstraps.

next back


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *