Join Date: Oct 2004
What part of michigan?
Originally Posted by ALBin517
Early antlerless season is only a Saturday and Sunday. I met my uncle and his friend at 6:15am.
It was lightly raining and about 45 degrees.
Based on sunrise, DNR said no shooting until 6:49am on Saturday.
So about 7:30am, I saw the back half of a deer pass through a shooting lane about 40 yards from me, angling toward me on my right. Another deer was following about ten feet behind - a buck with 6-8 points and a narrow spread.
My tree stand faces south and they were walking upwind on a southeast-to-northwest bearing that would have them pass about thirty feet to my right.
But as soon as the front deer came into the next shooting lane and I ascertained it was antlerless, the deer put its head down and started turning right.
I purposefully do not clear-cut the low vegetation around my tree, so it looks more natural. But with the doe on its new bearing, it was quickly going to get into the uncut area underneath me. Then if it kept the new bearing, it was going to smell me before it got through the “blind spot.”
All of this occurred to me in less than a second while it was turning. So I shot at its front shoulder, which was now its left shoulder. It dropped.
It was at about 60 feet from my tree when I shot and it dropped at about 55 feet.
Then my heart started pumping. It had all happened too quickly for me to get nervous before shooting.
So she was down and kicking a little once in awhile. But there was no need to shoot again.
Then I noticed something back behind her. The buck had not moved. He was frozen except for his head – apparently trying to figure out where I was. Eventually he started walking the same path, back toward where he came from. But he only backtracked maybe ten yards and turned left, going northeast toward where I walked in. He ended up milling around for probably fifteen minutes before going back south where he came from.
Since the three of us share 55 acres, we agreed to stay in our trees until 10am rather than start making racket and ruining the hunt for the other guys. Turned out to be for the best because my uncle’s friend shot a nice doe with a slug from his 870, around 9am. But the wait gave me a couple hours to question myself.
That was a doe, wasn’t it?
Did I just assume it was a doe because a buck was following it?
It had all happened so fast.
From my tree stand, I could see the entire deer except the head.
10am finally arrived (alright, I’ll admit that I could only wait until 9:55) and I climbed down.
It was a doe.
The bullet had hit her temple – both the entry and exit on the same side. I was on the left shoulder when I fired but her head was down. So her head was apparently “in the way.” I didn’t take the time to do a dissection but the bullet must have cracked her coconut and ricocheted away. Because there was no damage to her torso; just the two holes in the noggin.
She was fat. We estimated her age at a year and half but she was well fed.
My wife and I dropped her off at the processor and got to East Lansing an hour before the MSU game kicked off.