01-02-2008, 08:26 PM
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B&C 140 Class
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Join Date: Dec 2007
Since I set up this scenario, I guess it's time for me to give my answer, but first, I want to thank everyone who has replied so far. You gave a lot of perspectives that I hadn't thought about.
Joel - I agree that no deer is worth getting into an armed confrontation for. That was a good point.
TNHunter - another great comment when you say that you almost have to be in the situation before you could tell for sure what you might do. (I'm trying to set these up so that just in case you ever find yourself in such a situation, you may find it more easy to make a hard decision because you have already given it some thought.)
Most of you guys would shoot the wounded deer to end its suffering. That's what I would do too.
I wouldn't assume that the hunter who wounded it would be tracking it or good enough to find it if he were. Of course, if he were to show up after I killed it, I could always offer it to him - provided I hadn't already put my tag on it. That might make things a little sticky!
Also, I wouldn't assume that the deer would survive this wound. There have been lots of deer that survive with a broken leg, but a broken shoulder is pretty much a fatal wound... but it might take a while. The point is not the particluar wound described here, but the idea that you might find a deer that has a wound from which it most likely would not survive.
For me, if I shot that big buck, I could never tell anyone the story without, at least, thinking about what might have happened to the other buck (whether I told them about it or not) and that would make the whole thing, not only a bad experience to begin with, but a recurring distasteful problem every time I told it.
(More questions on hunter ethics to follow.)