lmcglamery wrote:Many thanks.
So, on a related note, having missed (possibly hit, but assume missed) this big boy, would you hunt the same area expecting him to come back, or expand the territory? Very low hunting pressure on private land, but worried I might have run him off onto another property.
Thank you in advance.
Hoo boy...that's almost impossible to answer without actually being on the ground there. There are many factors.....
Was where this happened in this buck's core area? Was it in a bedding area? Is the area in a travel corridor? What the cover like...open? Thick? In between? What's adjacent to the area? Cover, feed, etc. Are there a lot of does that frequent this same area?
My guess without knowing any of these things is that if you missed him and it's his core area then he will be back, if he's not back already. Big bucks DO NOT like to leave their core area. However, you have "edjumacated" him and he will most likely be nocturnal and even if he is active during daylight you will have to approach or set an ambush is a different spot from where you shot at him.
If you hit him he may very well be back also....as I said they do not like to leave their secure area, and if he's mortally wounded and dies he may very well die in that core area for the same reason. About 10 years ago I hit a nice buck with a broadside shot which apparently only hit one lung (there's an ammo issue that's part of this story which I'll save for another time...suffice to say that I changed sabots after this episode...). We tracked him all that day (we had snow) and he made a big loop and wound up going back onto our main ground. In his beds there was lung blood. The nenxt morning we picked up his track and while I really expected to find him dead, he wasn't and left our ground. Where he went I could not go and even our farmer friend who's place we were hunting could not go so we had to quit. The neighbor who bowhunts the adjoining ground which was still part of his core area found him dead a week later about 200 yards from where I shot him.