buck fever

vambo991
 
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RE: Buck Fever

Postby vambo991 » Tue Jun 17, 2008 2:37 pm

I'm like some of the others... I get DEER fever. Even if it's a young doe... if I know I'm gonna take it... I get nervous as all get-up. I've also watched really nice 120 inch 2 1/2 year old bucks milling around my stand for several minutes without feeling anything but simple joy, just because I knew I wasn't going to take a shot. Something about the anticipation of the kill that makes my heart race, I'm no rocket scientist, but I'm pretty sure that's a normal, involuntary reponse.

RNC
 
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RE: Buck Fever

Postby RNC » Wed Jun 18, 2008 3:31 am

I have been bow hunting 25 years now and I still get jacked up every time I decide I want to try and take an animal. Most of the time I can keep it under some amount of control and place my shot where it needs to be. But every once in awhile it gets the better of me and I miss for whatever reason.Or I move too quickly and get spotted or get tunnel vision on one animal and miss spotting another one, usally closer then the one I am watching. No matter what you hunt or how long you have done it if it no longer gets you excited it's time to hang it up.

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Woods Walker
 
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RE: Buck Fever

Postby Woods Walker » Thu Oct 02, 2008 6:26 pm

As long as the passion for the hunt is in you, you will always have it to some degree. When the day comes that you DON'T have it, then your days as hunter are at an end.
 
The only thing you can really do to control it, is to make a lot of kills. With each kill you make, you LEARN, both mentally and physically, what it takes to do this.
 
I hunted from treestands for 24 years and killed a lot of deer. When I started, I had the exact same reaction as you. My heart beat SO hard that I though my ears would burst. As the years went on, that sensation became less and less intense, until I would only get it if it was a buck, and then finally instead of getting the "letdown" AFTER I had the deer on the ground and gutted, I was getting it when they APPEARED and I knew I would get a shot!
 
I NEVER want to lose my passion for the hunt, so I started stillhunting them on the ground. Now, just getting close enough to TAKE a shot (whether I choose to or not), is enough to get the old buzzer going. Not like you have it now, but it's still there!
 
Oh...and by the way....I've been bowhunting for 33 years, and I hit a tree last season!  That will ALWAYS be with you!  [:D]
 
 
Hunt Hard,

Kill Swiftly,

Waste Nothing,

Offer No Apologies.....

>>>--------------------------------->
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shaman
 
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RE: Buck Fever

Postby shaman » Fri Oct 03, 2008 12:21 am

I have had serious buck fever on at least one occasion.  I'm not prone to this sort of thing. In fact, I've made a living out of being cool and calculating under stress.  However, I had a nice big buck grunt at me from back in the cedars at the start of legal hunting back in 2003, and I seized up.  I had a death-grip on my rifle and I could not move.

They always say to aim at a patch of hide and not make eye contact with the animal.  I'm sorry, but what I had was not going to be covered by such simple means.

1)  I talked to myself out loud.  I kept it at a whisper, but I told myself to settle down and get a grip. I was encouraging but firm.
2)  I concentrated on my breathing. I forced myself to breath through my nose in deep measured breaths.
3)  I made each effort an individual task with beginning, middle, and end.  I got my hands working again. I put myself into position. etc.

It took a good five minutes for the deer to finally show himself.  When he did, I had it all stuffed back in one sock and made the shot.


I bowhunted for over 20 years, so I have a couple shanked shots under my belt.  Don't sweat it. It's part of the gig. The best thing I can give you to help an exercise I did for years.

Set up your practice the way you're going to hunt.  I hunted from a stand, so I at least had a seat to start from.  I would sit with my eyes closed, fully rigged, and listen to the sounds of the back yard and imagine a nice buck coming from back in the neighbor's.  It would take a few minutes for the deer to get into range, and I tried to really get into the visualization.  Each time, the deer would wander near the target downrange.  By then, I had arrow nocked, my release attached, and I had risen to my feet in a silent, fluid motion.  I then came to full draw and released on a burlap deer target after holding at full draw for a good long time.   Five times through like that seemed to do more for my accuracy than shooting groups or spots.  It also kept me settled when I was up in my stand and actually had a deer coming in.

The bonus was that I could practice this way without my bow anywhere and anytime.  If I had a few minutes at lunch, I could pop out to the parking lot and stand with my back to a tree and do the visualization. 
 
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msbadger
 
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RE: Buck Fever

Postby msbadger » Fri Oct 03, 2008 1:12 am

FFKevin you bet and Thank god I was stapped into a harness...... a few years ago I was out behind the house and hadn't seen a descent buck in 2 weeks ...so along comes this doe and I decide to take her....she's not far out 15yrds or so and I come to full draw as she comes in broad side...I think well just take a few more steps and it's a perfact shot....Then the thick brush to my right explodes and I look down to see a 11pt buck with 12in brow tines!...and he's ten yrds away.....
 
  Well in the second I saw him...my knees turned to rubber I lost most of my muscle control and watched horrified as the arrow intended for the doe released and in slow motion sailed under her chin...Thank God....then my eyes started shaking back and forth like a cartoon character and to this day the feeling that the top of my head popped off and blue stars were flowing out...well still freaks me out....I COULD NOT control my breathing and leaned back against the tree looking straight up saying don't drop the bow don't drop the bow!!!.mean while the arrow startled both deer but they jumped only a few yards ..and I snuck a peak as that huge buck stood broad side 17 yrds out for what seemed an eternity...all I could do is stay pinned 16 ft up against that tree trying my best not to pass out.....a week later I saw that buck again...in a pic at the local gun shop [&o]
That was the first and ...knock on wood....only time....now I do what Shaman does when I practice...and I repeat this is your only shot make it good, as I'm drawing the bow and........ most important.....I see rack ONCE and then NEVER look at the deers head again until I recover him.....it's worked so far....by the way...it caused me to go to the doctors ...now I'm on high blood pressure meds...go figure...[8|]

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BruceBruce1959
 
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RE: Buck Fever

Postby BruceBruce1959 » Fri Oct 03, 2008 1:48 am

ORIGINAL: Woods Walker

As long as the passion for the hunt is in you, you will always have it to some degree. When the day comes that you DON'T have it, then your days as hunter are at an end.
 

Oh...and by the way....I've been bowhunting for 33 years, and I hit a tree last season!  That will ALWAYS be with you!  [:D]


I have to say that I don't agree with the "your days as hunter are at an end" statement at all. 
 
I don't have any degree of "buckfever" any longer and I know my hunting days are nowhere near an end.
 
the best way to beat "buckfever" is to understand what it is.
"buckfever" is a hunter holding so much compassion and respect for the game he is about to kill that he is unable to muster the strength and courage to follow through.
Anyone can kill an animal but a Hunter understands the reasons we hunt, the why's and how's of hunting. 
Hunting isn't about killing,  hunting is the way we maintain strong and healthy wildlife by harvesting animals to help maintain balance.
 
At some point a hunter understands his role as a hunter and somehow finds the ability to harvest wildlife but until that day comes for you as a hunter you should stand proud to say you've had "buckfever".
There's no shame, only pride in knowing you're a safe, ethical hunter.
The very Best of Luck to you always.
 
P.S.
I have also been hunting for 35 years and I can still hit the best of trees. [sm=rolleyes.gif]

(the meaning of compassion may also help you understand.
Compassion is a profound human emotion prompted by the pain of others. More vigorous than empathy, the feeling commonly gives rise to an active desire to alleviate another's suffering. It is often, though not inevitably, the key component in what manifests in the social context as altruism. In ethical terms, the various expressions down the ages of the so-called Golden Rule embody by implication the principle of compassion: Do to others as you would have done to you. Ranked a great virtue in numerous philosophies, compassion is considered in all the major religious traditions as among the greatest of virtues.)
"When you live off the land, Living is Good"

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JPH
 
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RE: Buck Fever

Postby JPH » Fri Oct 03, 2008 2:34 am

ORIGINAL: FFKEVIN 
Anyone have any advice or tips on how to beat buck fever???

 
You're going to think I'm crazy, but run some wind sprints b/f you shoot in practice. The military figured this out a long time ago. The best way to stimulate the stress of combat, buck fever, etc. is to stress your heart and lungs before shooting.
 
For example, if you are shooting at 30 yds, set up your bow then lay it down. Sprint to the target and back twice before picking up the bow and shooting. You will find that your sight picture and the desire to hurry the shot will be very close to what it is when you have the fever. In time, you can train your body and mind to function under these conditions.
 
If running does not work for you, jumping jacks, burpees, run in place, whatever.

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burnnurse1
 
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RE: Buck Fever

Postby burnnurse1 » Fri Oct 03, 2008 3:47 am

FFkevin, you're a hunter and I think when you lose that passion and excitement it's time to give it up. Everybody has had that happen. I've been hunting all my life and still get excited when I see any kind of deer. This has worked for me when faced with a little shot anxiety. Take 3 deep breaths, in through nose and out through mouth. On the 3rd, make it a half breath and hold it. Seems to control the jitters and allow you to be a little steadier. Works well with sighting in guns to. I always say a little prayer to!!!

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Woods Walker
 
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RE: Buck Fever

Postby Woods Walker » Fri Oct 03, 2008 4:11 am

ORIGINAL: BruceBruce1959

ORIGINAL: Woods Walker

As long as the passion for the hunt is in you, you will always have it to some degree. When the day comes that you DON'T have it, then your days as hunter are at an end.
 

Oh...and by the way....I've been bowhunting for 33 years, and I hit a tree last season!  That will ALWAYS be with you!  [:D]


I have to say that I don't agree with the "your days as hunter are at an end" statement at all. 
 
I don't have any degree of "buckfever" any longer and I know my hunting days are nowhere near an end.
 
the best way to beat "buckfever" is to understand what it is.
"buckfever" is a hunter holding so much compassion and respect for the game he is about to kill that he is unable to muster the strength and courage to follow through.
Anyone can kill an animal but a Hunter understands the reasons we hunt, the why's and how's of hunting. 
Hunting isn't about killing,  hunting is the way we maintain strong and healthy wildlife by harvesting animals to help maintain balance.
 
At some point a hunter understands his role as a hunter and somehow finds the ability to harvest wildlife but until that day comes for you as a hunter you should stand proud to say you've had "buckfever".
There's no shame, only pride in knowing you're a safe, ethical hunter.
The very Best of Luck to you always.
 
P.S.
I have also been hunting for 35 years and I can still hit the best of trees. [sm=rolleyes.gif]

(the meaning of compassion may also help you understand.
Compassion is a profound human emotion prompted by the pain of others. More vigorous than empathy, the feeling commonly gives rise to an active desire to alleviate another's suffering. It is often, though not inevitably, the key component in what manifests in the social context as altruism. In ethical terms, the various expressions down the ages of the so-called Golden Rule embody by implication the principle of compassion: Do to others as you would have done to you. Ranked a great virtue in numerous philosophies, compassion is considered in all the major religious traditions as among the greatest of virtues.)

 
OK Bruce, let me rephrase that.....if I lost that passion, then MY days as ahunter would be over, because I would quit.
 
I should not have put my own reasons in for someone else's. What right for me isn't right for all.
 
I stand corrected!
 
(But I can still hit trees with the best of you!)
 
 
Hunt Hard,

Kill Swiftly,

Waste Nothing,

Offer No Apologies.....

>>>--------------------------------->
NRA Endowment Life Member

Squirrelhawker
 
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RE: Buck Fever

Postby Squirrelhawker » Fri Oct 03, 2008 4:28 am

Killing large game is and always will be, whether we choose to admit it or not, an emotional experience. And IMO driving a razor sharp arrow through a deer rather than a chunk of lead even more so.
 
We are emotional beings and everybody handles that fact differently.

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