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Joined: 10/30/2004
Posts: 117
Heart or lungs ?

Curtis

Do you realize that if you are actually aiming where the heart is, and if you go over the heart by much more than a few inches, you hit the spine. After that there is a lot of no mans land thats nothing but a wound. If that same higher hit is placed a bit farther back it takes the top of the lungs and you have a kill?

I wished more folks knew how tiny the area is where the heart lies. Its a small target.

And since I can't control the deer's reaction (here in TX anyway they are uncanny about ducking) If I hit within an inch of where I was aiming I"ve had total success. Its not uncommon not to hit at all OR even hit the opposite side here.

Bucknrut

Just went against my advice since I was sure where the crosshair was when the rifle went off. And it was a chip shot and I saw the deer start to stumble before he dissappeared. End result? Followed up in a bottom about 10 minutes later. Found he crossed a deep creek with blood in the water and all along the bank. He just kept going. I suspect he knew we were after him and I assumed that after a bit I'd find him laying there..... Anyway 3 hours later we jump him and find he has a broken lower leg. With all the blood he lost we MIGHT have recovered him if we left him lay. In any case I should have just waited some even with a rifle shot. Went back to find a limb that deflected and probably opened the bullet about 6 feet from him. Probably zero penetration too...... Waiting is best again....

Jeff

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Location: Maryland
Joined: 11/23/2004
Posts: 8
Drop dead on the spot

I killed a doe this morning about 80 lbs dressed and oddly enough she simply fell over dead upon being hit .

The shot was taken in the hours of twilight where you can just make out your pins well enough to make a safe shot and be realitivly certain it will make its mark. lol

The actual shot was uphill 30 yards and the arrow struck her in the heart and both lungs. Oddly enough I wasnt aiming for the heart but hit it quite incidently . I was aiming 3 inches behind the front leg and was a bit low . The shot was true and she didnt even leave her spot , she simply fell dead. This is the first time Ive seen a kill of this sort in many years of hunting with guns /black powder and bow. Im glad it was quick , but I think I'll try again soon . Hehehehehehe Wink

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Joined: 10/30/2004
Posts: 117
Heart or lungs ?

thats the type of results you want. Be careful when they collapse like that though. Be ready to shoot again. You may have just grazed the spine and knocked them silly for a few seconds. I've seen it happen a few times and it results in a superficial flesh wound so its not that big of a deal.

BTW I don't ever think I posted that a MZ buck we killed 2 months back had an arrow go through both shoulder blades. 3 bladed. Evidently all vitals were missed along the way. Buck wasn't any the worse for wear till the 45 dead center MZ bullet hit.....

Jeff

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Location: OREGON(homestate)Mississippi(duty station)
Joined: 12/27/2004
Posts: 57
heart

well ive never actually taken an animal with a bow
when rifle hunting shooting a deer in the heart will kill it almost
intantly while shooting it in the lungs it will run a ways and die
bothh shots will be lethal but i would say a heart shot is best

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Joined: 10/30/2004
Posts: 117
Heart or lungs ?

cr

Thanks for the input and its always welcome. But for those that do not hunt with a bow there is a large world of difference for a bunch of reasons. Just FYI.

Jeff

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Moderator
Location: Wa.
Joined: 03/31/2004
Posts: 1300
Heart or lungs ?

My preference. 4-blade lung shot. Mark where I last saw the deer. Get off my feet. Have a cup of coffee, some lunch. Let the arrow do it's work. Follow blood trail and hope for the best case scenario.

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Location: Pa
Joined: 08/31/2005
Posts: 8
Heart or lungs ?

Both!

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Location: Utah
Joined: 03/03/2005
Posts: 383
Heart or lungs ?

While it's favorable to takeout both the heart and lungs, the margin of error is a lot greater than simply shooting for the center of the lungs. Bow hunters can put more odds in their favor by aiming straight up the rear portion of the front leg - about 40% up the body.

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Joined: 10/30/2004
Posts: 117
Heart or lungs ?

I'd say that indicates way closer to bottom of shoulder than top for bowhunters and others. Anything higher than half way up the side of an animal lessens your error margin.

Top of the shoulder being top of the scapula which is actually even way over the top of the vitals.

Just over the top of the heart would be a more accurate description.

I'm not that familiar with elk, but have seen many WT run quite a ways with shoulders/legs broken all to heck.

Jeff

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Location: Utah
Joined: 03/03/2005
Posts: 383
Where to Aim

Bow & Arrow

For a lung shot, follow the rear portion of the front leg about 40% up the animal's body. Aiming near the broad center of the body allows for a greater margin of error, which might be needed depending on your skill. This large area will likely yield a high lung shot, which enables the lower lungs to fillup with blood and the drowning of the animal in short order (not immediately).


Outward Appearance

Rifle

1. Lung Shot: Follow the rear portion of the front leg about 30% up the animal's body to hit the middle of the lungs.


Circulatory System - Heart & Lungs

2. Heart & Lung Shot: Some precision shooters prefer to hold as close to the shoulder as possible (1:00 position) for a heart and double lung shot - aiming 1" above and 1" behind the front leg - taking out both the top of the heart and the lower lungs. Note: Big Game animals have hearts that sit low in the body cavity and are 1/2 way shielded by the shoulder joint.


Bone Structure

3. Spine / Base of Neck Area: Follow the forward portion of the front leg about 2/3'rds up the animal's body to where the neck meets the spine. There are a lot of major support bones in this area that when broken, will anchor the animal very quickly. While this is a decent sized kill zone for the more experienced hunter, it's not as large as the lung area.

See also: Elk Anatomy Overview.

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