Bad Scene on a Deer Stand!
Just this last seaon, I was on a stand from which I could see another hunter (also on a stand). We were on state land adjoining a private ranch that was posted. As usual, there were literally dozens of deer on the other side of the fence with several HUGE bucks in the group. Finally, one of the big bucks followed some does onto the state land. Unfortunately, it walked by the other hunter instead of me. Through my binoculars I saw him take a shot at the buck. All the does and the buck took off and jumped the fence back onto the posted ranch. From my position, I couldn't be sure that the deer was hit, but think it had been because, after going a couple of hundred yards, it just stopped and stood there. (The other deer all kept going.) The other hunter kept shooting at it. He fired at least five or six more times - probably had to reload - over what might have been 5 more minutes. It didn't look like he connected because the buck never flinched or moved. By that time, I was getting a little disgusted at the whole scene - and also had to get to work, so I left, shaking my head. The really bad part about this whole thing is that the other hunter was sitting right (exactly) where I had intended to sit that morning. (Next time I'll get up earlier!) Any comments on this incident would be appreciated. For example it raises the questions: Should the hunter have kept shooting after the buck ran back onto posted property? Would it have made a difference if he had wounded the deer with his first shot? (Another question of hunter ethics) Should I have done anything differently? (Besides getting up earlier.)
Don't know what you could've done. I do think it does matter if he wounded the deer with the first shot though. In my opinion if he felt he had,he is then obligated to try and finish it off. Up to the point you explained, I feel like he did what he could short of learning to shoot and staying in his limits. I further feel his next action should of been to contact the owner of the ranch. Let him know what happened and ask for permission to enter property and check for blood and perhaps recover deer. But all he can do is ask, it's the owners decision to make.
How far was the hunter from the deer for his first shot? Maybe the guy needs to check his sights and shooting discipline. Remember this is my opinion right here: If the guys in a stand with a clear shot, all's he would need is one shot with a clean hit to the vitals which would then only allow the buck to run the maximum distance a buck would run with proper shot placement, maybe not even close to the posted property. I do understand your disgust at the situation.
Hunting close to private property requires being able to drop the deer in it's tracks to avoid the incident like you posted. While a neck shot or a double front shoulder shot will do it the question is can you. Shooting at the buck after it went back on private property in my opinion broke the law regardless if it was hit or not. Once it crossed the line it was no longer his buck. Could he have asked permission to pursue the buck? I would not hunt where I can see other hunters in sight, makes for a dangerous situation.
I do hope the other hunter at least went to the range afterwards and figured out his range. Hopefully he bumped the scope off during the season hadn't realized it and will learn from this. Also Hunting Man mentioned hunting so close to line, here in SC the regs. don't allow you to hunt within 150 yds of private property without permission of the owner and occupants. So once a deer crosses our fence it still has to come another 150 yds before I can take a shot. We're not bordered by a ranch though it's a private hunt club and I know if one ever made it back across the fence it's gone. I would let them know they had a wounded deer on their property though.
In Tennessee it is legal to track a deer that you shot that ran onto private property. If the landowner says no they do not want you on their land you can simply call a game warden and they will go talk to the landowner for you. I dont know what the rules would be for a deer ranch of some sorts. In Tennessee it is a common courtesy to let the landowner know what you are doing. Around these parts most landowners would also give you a hand in tracking the deer. The only reason I would not track my deer in Tenn is if the private property land owners were in the woods hunting. I dont want to get shot or mess their hunt up so I would just wait for their hunt to end.
Hunters that take pot shots at deer tend to gripe my rear. If I miss the first shot or do not connect well then I still wait for another good clean shot. If the guy shot 5 or 6 more times than obviously his gun is way off, he is a bad shot or he was just taking pot shots at it. Probably pot shots. If you should be connecting on your shots and your not then STOP shooting. Get down and go the range before you kill somebody. If your that horrible of a shot then you dont need to be in the woods anyway. And never take pot shots at deer. 99% of the time your gonna miss or just wound the animal.
Frome where I was situated, it looked like the deer was right on top of the other hunter - I would say well under 100 yards, maybe under 50. My gut feeling is that the guy is not a good shot, as I think he was the same hunter who needed two shots to drop a fairly close doe a few weeks earlier in the same spot.
Your right, being that close to private property means being able to drop a deer dead in its tracks, and that means having good discipline, waiting for the right moment to shoot, good shot placement, the right bullet, etc. But who knows, maybe he just had back luck that day. Still, it bothered me to see such a really great buck get (probably) wounded by a guy who, whether it was right or wrong to keep shooting, couldn't finish the job with five or six more shots at an animal that was just standing out in front of him.:thumbdown:
As for hunting where I can see other hunters, that is another good point, and, after this last incident, I just might vacate that place. I should tell you, however, that in this particular wide open area, you can see hundreds and hundreds of yards, maybe as far as a couple of miles in every direction, which, in a way, might make it safer because you know where everyone is.
I don't know that I blame you for vacating the area One Horse, but I do think it's a shame a good hunter would have to give up a prime location to someone that doesn't belong there.:thumbdown:
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