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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
This may seem like I'm whining a bit, but over the last year I have heard so much talk about using headshots, with underpowered rifles, for the game they are hunting for. It always seems to be young kids that are just getting into hunting, or think they are some sort of snipers. I try to explain that a head shot is not a good choice, nor should it the first choice at a shot. I'm fairly young, but was always taught to take a high percentage shot, and the more variables you can subtract, the more positive the outcome. I don't see why the head shot is all the craze now???? To me the lung/heart area is my go to spot. A 243 is the mininum that I was tought was a deer rifle. At the gun range we have a bunch of new people coming in, and I'm kinda getting sick about hearing how they are going to go out this deer season and head shot their monster buck with a sub deer cartridge. I live in central/northern Michigan. Is this becoming more common in your areas too? Like I said maybe I'm over thinking it, but you should respect any animal you are hunting for enough to make a clean ethical kill.
 

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well put sounds like when I go play paintball & the "newbies" spend all this money because they are going to Snipe everyone usually doesn't work
I will avoid the headshot Heart & Lungs is where it is at for me. I was alway's tought to aim for mass
 

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well, i don't head shoot, but i will look and wait for the neck shot. unless it is a buck that is in question of being mounted. But with as much range time and time i put in shooting hogs, i feel very confident with my weapons and my abilities to take the neck shots. My longest on a deer was last season right at 220 yds with a 270. the AR i use for hogs, so far has been about 150 yds. much easier to track with a neck shot. lol. DRT.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I have taken neck shots on hogs and they are very effective. I just don't think i would ever risk a head shot. I've been shooting for 10 years now and while I'm no sniper, I feel very confident with all my guns. I too use a 270 a lot and love it. Many of the guys at the range that are bragging about head shots can't even get a 3 inch grouping. Thats pretty inadequate to me for a heart or lung shot let alone a head shot.
 

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No head or neck shots here.. I have to take the biggest shot available..

Havent heard much talk of folks preferring to shoot this way but my time around young hunters is somewhat limited..
 

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Im not gonna mince words these are the same idiots taking fifty yard bow shots at a deers back end.This is stupidity and not ethical. These guys believe they are snipers.lol
 

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I think part of this is related to the video games and "video game mentality." [I will admit that I enjoy a simulated hunting game during the off sesaon to pull me through until opening day.] There are quite a few games that encourage head shots above all else and award more points/prizes for killing virtual quarry with a head shot. Kids that are easily impressionable play these and are taught head shots are best.

With that said I have not heard any talk about hunters taking head shots. Its all heart/lung shots in my neck of the woods. Always take the time to mentor those hunters less experienced than yourself.
 

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Range targets showing Deer siloettes

Even though I know I spelled it wrong above we have all seen the targets that look like a Deer that has been xrayed. I think if we as members of shooting ranges put these targets up for display during the hunter sight in days it would foster questions. If we then took some minutes to explain why the recommended location for shooting a Deer is in the heart/lung area alot less Deer would be wounded and lost.

Karl
 

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Even though I know I spelled it wrong above we have all seen the targets that look like a Deer that has been xrayed. I think if we as members of shooting ranges put these targets up for display during the hunter sight in days it would foster questions. If we then took some minutes to explain why the recommended location for shooting a Deer is in the heart/lung area alot less Deer would be wounded and lost.

Karl
your right about that.and yes I do hear alot about head shots for the past 2yrs.Most or younguns doing it.There watching to many of them hunting shows that make it look real easy.I hate to see wounded deer.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
I still will always shoot a heart or lung shot, or I will let the deer keep walking by. Even if I am killing a coyote that always seem to pester my property I want it to die quickly and still respect it. My only real neck shot experience was on a hog with a pistol. It was less than 15 yards and was more of a self defense shot. I wouldn't make it a real time hunting shot. It just pains me that when I try and give them a little advice at the range, just like the guys did for me when I was starting out, they still insist on the head shots. They don't want to ruin the meat is one I get the most. I've shot deer with a .243 - 300wssm and as long as you are using a proper bullet it will be a non issue. They just dont respect the game animals, and shouldn't even be out there!
 

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A lesson on deer anatomy and butchering charts should be included in these discussions, as well as what causes the deer to die as the result of the different target locations. A heart/lung shot damages very little meat - a few ribs and the internal organs which I can not make myself eat anyways. If you shoot a little forward of the chest you will hit the shoulders and ruin some of that meat but it should still be minimal compared to the total meat yeild.
 

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I am against head shots as well. I think at least some of it is caused by some who want to use minimal calibers and feel they are doing something "special" by killing a large animal with a small caliber & bullet to the head. Call me old fashioned, but not one thing impressive doing that IMHO. :thumbdown:

Those who have done a lot of deer hunting also realize that a deer moves it's head a lot. Even an expert shot cannot always anticipate when a deer is going to move it's head. A shot at that moment may leave the deer with a crippling injury that leads to a long and painful death. Not sportsmanlike in my book.

As far as neck shots are concerned, I do make them when presented at a good range. My "neck" shots, however, are base of the neck shots which normally makes for DIT hits and recoveries. My last hog was a neck shot at 125 yds and worked as they always do. Of course a hog doesn't really have much of a neck either....lol.
 

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I have only shot one buck with a neck shot even when many others gave a short perfect shot. I just think a double lung shot is the best and has no meat damage. The neck shot is going to waste valuable and some of the best meat period. It is however a quick kill shot, I just don't care for them.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
A lot of the guys I know and hunt with say a neck shot on a hog is different then on a deer. Many of the larger hogs have a heavy armor plate that is hard to get through in some scenarios so I'm not against that. My issue is that what if your attempting a head shot and the deer and it moves just a bit like said by others. The worse meat damage I have ever had was on a doe with a 12 gauge at around 15 yards. It jumped up a little as I pulled the trigger and I hit it low, it dropped right there, but made a mess. I have taken a deer once before that had a piece of his ear missing and on his antler has a groove that looked like a bullet had went across his head. I was hog hunting and had a smaller pig run forward and I hit it by accident and blew a big part of his head off. I had to shoot a second shot and I was using a 270 at under a 100 yards. That was enough for me so even though it wasn't on purpose, it turned me off and I won't do that again.
 

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"Those who have done a lot of deer hunting also realize that a deer moves it's head a lot. Even an expert shot cannot always anticipate when a deer is going to move it's head. A shot at that moment may leave the deer with a crippling injury that leads to a long and painful death. Not sportsmanlike in my book." Well said Turner!

Have never tried a head shot, and never will, just for the reason mentioned by Turner.

Have tried one neck shot, and that was with a .30/30.
Nice 8 pt walked out of the brush ~ 50 yards away and then stopped.
I'll admit I got "buck fever" and put the first round high.
Buck froze, much to my surprise, instead of bolting.
Jacked a second round into the chamber, and took an extra second or two to get my breathing and adrenaline under control, then squeezed the trigger.
Buck took two steps and dropped.

But now I'm back to lung/heart region, preferring double lung shots.
They may run, but they won't run very far.
Most I've had one run with a double lung shot is 35-40 yards.

RR
 
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