Bow Hunting Vs. Shotgun

Discussion in 'Bow Hunting Forum' started by waterfowlandy, Oct 13, 2017.

  1. waterfowlandy

    waterfowlandy New Member

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    Hello everyone,
    Im new to deer hunting with both gun and bow.
    My question that I've though about a very long time is what is more ethical to kill a deer with, a bow or shotgun?
    I understand that bow can kill a deer with no issues with proper shot placement, but I couldn't see how it could put a deer down for the count like the force a slug could do. I know they can both kill a deer but what weapon would general kill the animal quicker?
     
  2. Native NV Ducker

    Native NV Ducker Mod-Duck Hunters Forum, Classifieds, and 2 others Moderator Flyway Manager

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    Hunting isn't about knocking the animal over. It is about clean kills. Proper arrow placement in the heart/lung area ensures a fairly quick kill. Sure, the animal may run off, but not far. Plenty of rifle hunters have experienced the same thing.

    The old, "It isn't the arrow, it is the indian." saying applies. You can put your shotgun slug 4" too far back, and that animal might not die for a day or two. The same applies to an arrow.

    'Ethics' comes into play when the hunter decides when to take, or NOT take, the shot. That applies to any type of hunting.
     
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  3. WoodieSC

    WoodieSC North/South Carolina Flyway Forum Moderator Flyway Manager

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    Excellent answer, Native.

    waterfowlandy, I would just comment that I think it is critical that the hunter fulfill his/her obligation to be proficient with whatever weapon they choose to use.

    Since you say you are new to deer hunting with both the shotgun and bow, that implies to me that you could become more proficient with the shotgun faster than the bow, and thus it is the one you should practice with.

    If I am mistaken, then just take your pick, but I'd suggest that it is easier to wound a deer with an arrow than with a slug, if for no reason other than the toxic shock factor of the slug. Also, to the detriment of the arrow, deer tend to "jump the string" (or crouch down at the sound of the string), which can easily cause a poor hit for an inexperienced bow hunter.

    Let us know what you decide, and how you make out.

    Welcome to the Refuge.
     
  4. widgeon

    widgeon Elite Refuge Member

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    I got a doe today with my bow so I'm voting BOW!! I made a perfect 12 yd shot and the deer ran 60 yds and fell over dead as a hammer.

    What ever you hunt with, stay within your effective range and it's all good.
     
  5. H20DAD

    H20DAD Elite Refuge Member

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    I've never shot a shotgun with slugs that held as tight a pattern as any bow I shot out to about 100 yards.

    I've knocked more deer over or dropped them in their tracks with a bow as well.

    Had a buck run over 100 yards with a 12 gauge slug in each ham and one up along the spine. The first shot was from about 10 yards where he jumped up from his bed and I fired looking down the side of the gun since it had a scope. He finally ran into a tree and then I put the fourth shot through his spine to drop him. The three shots slowed him down but I was beginning to feel like I was flinging spitballs at him until he went down.

    I'll take a bow any day over a shotgun.
     
  6. WoodieSC

    WoodieSC North/South Carolina Flyway Forum Moderator Flyway Manager

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    First, you've been shooting the wrong slug barrel and slug type combinations if you can group arrows better at 100 yds better than with a rifled barrel and sabot slugs.

    Secondly, if you're shooting accurately with a bow at 100 yds, you're not a beginner like the OP, so that's a consideration.

    Third, if you're shooting a deer in the hams, you're right, you should give up the shotgun. ;)
     
  7. waterfowlandy

    waterfowlandy New Member

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    I appreciate all of the responses so far. I'm probably just going to use a friends crossbow until gun season, passing on anything that doesn't have a decent rack of antlers. Also would shot anything outside 30 yards with the bow. I have a slug barrel on by shotgun with sabots sighted in for shotgun season, which I will definitely be less selective of what I will shoot.
    I completely agree with WoodSC comment about how it would be much easier to wound a deer with a arrow over a slug, which is why I'm planing on holding off shooting one with a bow unless it has a big rack.
     
  8. H20DAD

    H20DAD Elite Refuge Member

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    Post some pictures of your groups at 100 yards.

    Nobody should be bow hunting unless they have been practicing for several months before the season. A crossbow included. The original poster shouldn't go hunting until he is proficient with his weapon on choice, ethically speaking.

    When a good antlered buck jumps up out of a field at 10 yards the next time you are 19 years old see what you do. The deer was harvested and eaten.
     
  9. waterfowlandy

    waterfowlandy New Member

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    I completely agree. Id be the last person to shoot a deer with a weapon I'm not accurate or comfortable shooting. With that being said, you should take some of your own advice... Coming from the guy who is only cable able of killing a deer with leg and spine shots at 10 yards is an absolute joke. Sorry buddy, but you've got no right to talk about ethics.
     
  10. Jeffer

    Jeffer Elite Refuge Member

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    So one of the first things you need to learn is how they kill. An arrow is designed to kill through blood loss. It is a cutting tool with virtually no kinetic "stopping" energy behind it. Your ideal shot with an arrow is a complete pass through, through the vital area of the animal cutting arteries ams viens creating massive blood loss. It is a very efficient weapon when used properly. Now a bullet or a slug kills in a different way. It is not so much about the blood loss but more about the tissue damage created by the transfer of kinetic energy from the slug. Ideally you hope for the bullet to not pass through the animal but stay in the animal transferring all of its energy to the vital area. It is the difference of being hit by a bicycle or a truck. When a bullet performs It a job properly the tissue in the area hit basically turns to jello. That is one of the reasons hunting bullets are designed to "mushroom" to slow it down on impact. What ever weapon you chose it is important to learn it well and become proficient with it.
     
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