Pennsylvania Game News - November 2011 - 59

a generous sprinkling of white hair that my broadhead had clipped from the buck’s brisket — evidence that revealed how tantalizingly close I had come to tagging what would have been my first bow buck ever. Clipped hair surrounding the arrow shaft with no blood signals a close call but a clean miss. A shaft coated with blood from broadhead to nock designates a pass-through shot. Clippings of dark hair — brown or black — point to a hit above the brisket. Clippings of white hair alone suggest the shot was low and may have cut the flesh but missed the vitals. An equal distribution of dark hair and white hair indicate a steep shot that entered high on the deer’s back or flank and exited through the brisket or belly. Evidence provided by hair clippings should confirm what the archer observed while visually tracking the arrow’s point of impact. Blood evidence on the arrow also provides clues about penetration. Bright red or pink frothy blood indicates a lung shot. Bright red blood without the froth or bubbles can be a heart or major artery shot. Liver shots are evinced by dark or even purplish blood. A shot in the paunch will reveal semi-digested food matter. A whiff of the odor on the arrow will also confirm the much-dreaded gut shot. Blood from non-fatal muscle shots may initially mimic heart or blood vessel shots, and while the blood trail on these non-vital shots may quickly expire, the animal won’t. The bowhunter should also note the deer’s body language at the shot. Ironically, on a perfect pass-through double lung shot the deer may not react at all, or just take a startled hop but continue walking or feeding until it staggers and collapses. A paunch or liver shot may cause the deer to hunch up before bounding away. As the deer flees the scene, check its tail. If the tail is raised like a flag, it indicates a flesh wound or miss. If the tail is tucked, the animal is likely hit hard. An arrow that hits the spine or near the spine will immediately knock the deer off
NOVEMBER 2011

its feet. In this case, the archer should immediately nock a second arrow and prepare for another quick shot. If the deer is hit in the spine, it will still attempt to crawl away and the archer must prepare for a coup de grace to the vitals. If the deer is simply hit below the spine but above the vitals — an area my bowhunting buddies and I call the non-dead zone — it will recover, regain its feet, and escape unless the archer has the presence of mind to put another shot into its vitals before this happens. After collecting and examining the arrow and determining the nature of the hit, it’s time to pick up the trail. With passthrough lung and heart shots taken from above, this tends to be an easy chore with ample blood quickly leading to the expired animal. Wayward shots that happen to slice major arteries also spray significant blood, and recovery of the animal as it bleeds out is fairly well assured. The all-too-common less-than-perfect shots create the most problematic blood trails. Non pass-through shots where the arrow hits gristle or bone and stays with the deer can make for a tough challenge because, without an exit wound on the lower, opposite side of the deer, the blood trail is guaranteed to be sparse. In such cases, the entrance wound is high on the deer’s flank and may be plugged by the arrow shaft, while any exterior bleeding may be soaked up by the deer’s hair. In some cases, these types of hits may not be fatal and the deer will not be recoverable, but in others, despite the apparent lack of blood on the ground, significant internal bleeding occurs and the animal eventually succumbs. In any case, the bowhunter must persist and make every effort to recover the game. A roll of fluorescent orange tape is an indispensable aid in marking sparse blood trails. Wrap a length of tape above the last drop of blood found before searching for the next one, then walk circles radiating out and generally ahead of the last drop until the next one is found and marked. Keep
59



Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Pennsylvania Game News - November 2011

Pennsylvania Game News - November 2011
History of the Whitetail
Contents
Beagles, Brushpiles and Growing Up
Public Input and Deer Management
Doodles Along the Delaware
Driving
Room 204
2010-11 Small Game/Furbearer Harvests
Need a Life Jacket?
The Legacy From A to Z
Hunter Access Liability Protection
Thanksgiving Bear
Field Notes
Conservation News
Off the Wire
Another View
The Naturalist’s Eye
Fun Game
Straight from the Bowstring
Lock, Stock & Barrel
Crossings
Pennsylvania Game News - November 2011 - Pennsylvania Game News - November 2011
Pennsylvania Game News - November 2011 - Cover2
Pennsylvania Game News - November 2011 - History of the Whitetail
Pennsylvania Game News - November 2011 - Contents
Pennsylvania Game News - November 2011 - Beagles, Brushpiles and Growing Up
Pennsylvania Game News - November 2011 - 4
Pennsylvania Game News - November 2011 - 5
Pennsylvania Game News - November 2011 - 6
Pennsylvania Game News - November 2011 - Public Input and Deer Management
Pennsylvania Game News - November 2011 - 8
Pennsylvania Game News - November 2011 - Doodles Along the Delaware
Pennsylvania Game News - November 2011 - 10
Pennsylvania Game News - November 2011 - 11
Pennsylvania Game News - November 2011 - Driving
Pennsylvania Game News - November 2011 - 13
Pennsylvania Game News - November 2011 - 14
Pennsylvania Game News - November 2011 - 15
Pennsylvania Game News - November 2011 - 16
Pennsylvania Game News - November 2011 - 17
Pennsylvania Game News - November 2011 - Room 204
Pennsylvania Game News - November 2011 - 19
Pennsylvania Game News - November 2011 - 20
Pennsylvania Game News - November 2011 - 21
Pennsylvania Game News - November 2011 - 2010-11 Small Game/Furbearer Harvests
Pennsylvania Game News - November 2011 - 23
Pennsylvania Game News - November 2011 - Need a Life Jacket?
Pennsylvania Game News - November 2011 - 25
Pennsylvania Game News - November 2011 - The Legacy From A to Z
Pennsylvania Game News - November 2011 - 27
Pennsylvania Game News - November 2011 - 28
Pennsylvania Game News - November 2011 - 29
Pennsylvania Game News - November 2011 - Hunter Access Liability Protection
Pennsylvania Game News - November 2011 - 31
Pennsylvania Game News - November 2011 - Thanksgiving Bear
Pennsylvania Game News - November 2011 - 33
Pennsylvania Game News - November 2011 - 34
Pennsylvania Game News - November 2011 - Field Notes
Pennsylvania Game News - November 2011 - 36
Pennsylvania Game News - November 2011 - 37
Pennsylvania Game News - November 2011 - 38
Pennsylvania Game News - November 2011 - 39
Pennsylvania Game News - November 2011 - Conservation News
Pennsylvania Game News - November 2011 - 41
Pennsylvania Game News - November 2011 - 42
Pennsylvania Game News - November 2011 - 43
Pennsylvania Game News - November 2011 - 44
Pennsylvania Game News - November 2011 - 45
Pennsylvania Game News - November 2011 - 46
Pennsylvania Game News - November 2011 - 47
Pennsylvania Game News - November 2011 - Off the Wire
Pennsylvania Game News - November 2011 - Another View
Pennsylvania Game News - November 2011 - 50
Pennsylvania Game News - November 2011 - 51
Pennsylvania Game News - November 2011 - The Naturalist’s Eye
Pennsylvania Game News - November 2011 - 53
Pennsylvania Game News - November 2011 - 54
Pennsylvania Game News - November 2011 - Fun Game
Pennsylvania Game News - November 2011 - Straight from the Bowstring
Pennsylvania Game News - November 2011 - 57
Pennsylvania Game News - November 2011 - 58
Pennsylvania Game News - November 2011 - 59
Pennsylvania Game News - November 2011 - 60
Pennsylvania Game News - November 2011 - Lock, Stock & Barrel
Pennsylvania Game News - November 2011 - 62
Pennsylvania Game News - November 2011 - 63
Pennsylvania Game News - November 2011 - Crossings
Pennsylvania Game News - November 2011 - bb1
Pennsylvania Game News - November 2011 - bb2
Pennsylvania Game News - November 2011 - Cover3
Pennsylvania Game News - November 2011 - Cover4
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