I have seen a lot of conflict when it comes to this topic. I am here to tell you the .223 can kill a deer all day long. I popped a running 9 pt in full stride at over 225 yds and dropped him like a sack of potatoes.
I don't think anyone would say that the 223/5.56 would not kill a deer. I think that most of us would say that there are more powerful cartridges that will kill cleanly even if everything doesn't happen just perfect. You are a great shot to pull it off, but most of us are better with something that will still get a clean kill if we maybe don't do everything right. I live in a state MN that will not let you hunt with below 6mm. They want shooters to have the extra energy/penetration that the heavier bullet/larger bore gives you. Congrats on getting your deer...
I agree a .223 will kill a deer,I have done it myself.Shot a buck running at around 150 yards,knocked it right down.The buck got back up about 10 minutes later and started running.If it would not have hit a fence,I would not have gotten a second shot and would have lost him.Leave your .223 at home,I do now.
a .22 LR will kill a deer. that dont mean that you should use one to hunt with. smae goes for the .223. why anyone would want to use one is beond me. much quicker cleaner kill with a larger round, and less chance of it runnig to far to track too.