Saturday night I was archery deer hunting here in VT and I had a nice black bear come in nearly right under me. I need advice on what to do as this is the first bear I have shot and I am not a bear hunter. Heres what happened (please bear with me whole i lay out the details):
He was 10 yards nearly broad side, quartering very slightly away, at about a 25 degree angle downward with his nearside leg angled slightly back and his farside leg forward. I drew and held on his side i let the arrow fly and heard the unmistakeable pop of the expanding broadhead. He ran like a bat out of hell out to about 70 yards and stopped for what must have been a minute or so. I thought he was going to drop. then he proceeded to walk very slowly as if hurting slightly up hill but turning slowly away from me side slabbing the hill. then he proceded to stop again for about 5 minutes and i could just see glimpses of him up through the hardwoods. I thought for sure he was going to go down. He was not vocalizing at all except for a possible groan when i shot him. and he slowly walked off. When he came in he hadf been
I gave him about 15 minutes and started to pack my gear and i climbed down. I simply wanted to check the arrow as i could not see my lighted knock in the ground. My instinct was that the shot was high. I couldn't find the arrow at all or see the knock. and with the angle it should have been stuck in the ground so I backed out to get help.
When we returned I discovered the arrow about 10 yards from where I shot him on the exit side covered in blood fat and hair. However, no sign of accompanying blood anywhere. We searched on our hands and knees in the leaves and with a rain and snow mix starting to fall and heavy rain forcasted over night I was getting discouraged. We checked all the blowdowns i beleived he crossed with no sign of blood anywhere on sides of limbs he may have brushed against. Absolutely nothing! With the amount of turkey scratchings in the area it was hard to find eny disturbances in the leaves as it was all disturbed. I dont recall hearing any moans but what i thought to be coyotes howling up to my left and above me where he had gone and looping back towards the direction where he came from. I never saw him turn back this direction as I thought he had turned and headed to my right and down the hill the opposite direction.
Is it possible that this was him dieing and he had looped back around me. I am having some fears because we never really checked this area as I was sure he had turned and gone the other direction down hill?
The following day in the pouring rain we scaveneged on gps zig zagging and crossing but no sign of the bear.
With the amount of blood on the arrow and the steep angle of the shot everyone was telling me he has to be dead. Folks where telling me that with the angle I would have had to catch vitals on the exit. Why no blood? There is no way i hit hit gut as his stomach and gut portion was behind a tree. I know I hit him in the front end. Is it possible that I hit this animal high between the spine and the top of the lungs even at that angle?
Iam looking for any advice anyone can offer, as it is killing me for woudning an animal. I am really hoping he is nursing a wound right now and is going to live.I have taken 14 or 15 big game animals with a bow and never not found one so this is killing me bad!!! I guess as bowhunters would say I was due, but why on a beutiful black bear.