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Discussion Starter #1
Here is what happened. Monday, I went to Washington County (Georgia), to hunt some fields. I got in there around 3:30 pm and set up a ground blind on the corner of the field. After sitting for a little bit, around 5:15 pm I watched a nice Doe come out into the field. Just what I was waiting for, I have already shot my limit of Bucks. I watched her for a couple minute figure she was not getting any closer so I took the shot. I was thinking that the Doe was around 150 yards, however, after the shot I walked out 235 paces (yards). The Doe took off as if hit, Like its butt was on fire and the head was catching if you know what I mean. However, in the area I thought the Doe to have been NO BLOOD. As I was loosing light I started searching, Very shortly it was dark and I still have not found any blood. At first I thought I had a clean miss (I hope so), However, it ran as if hit. This year I have had BAD luck with blood trails. (2 deer dead flops right there, 1 deer ran over hundred yards with only three drops of blood.) I shot the first one using a 308 180 grain Federal Fusion and shot the deer close less than 10 yards, This deer the other night I was using 308 Winchester Supreme 150 grain Ballistic Silvertips. I have not had any chance to search during daylight so now I just don't know.
Has anyone else having BAD blood trails this year?
Also I do not remember about using poly bullets out of my Handi or not.
This is my handi with the a 10 pointer this year 180 Federal Fusion.
http://i218.photobucket.com/albums/cc127/JKump/Picture001.jpg
http://i218.photobucket.com/albums/cc127/JKump/Picture100.jpg
http://i218.photobucket.com/albums/cc127/JKump/deer10.jpg
Here are deer shot last couple year with the Federal Fusion 180s
http://i218.photobucket.com/albums/cc127/JKump/Picture017.jpg
http://i218.photobucket.com/albums/cc127/JKump/Picture002.jpg
http://i218.photobucket.com/albums/cc127/JKump/Picture006.jpg
This is a Doe shot with .243 95 grain Winchester Ballistic Silvertips.
http://i218.photobucket.com/albums/cc127/JKump/Picture009.jpg
This is a Button Buck shot with 158 grain 357. Mag Federal Fusion
http://i218.photobucket.com/albums/cc127/JKump/Picture015.jpg
I have had good blood trails in the past. I can't explain this years results.
 

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Where are you putting the bullets? Bullet placement really is the key to it all. I prefer the heart/lung area if/when it can be taken. That's the largest sure kill zone on a deer so you get a bit of leeway for a poor shot to still be solidly in the kill zone. You also should get an excellent blood trail so long as you use a bullet that will expand and exit.

Some folks shoot for the lungs but too high and so a good blood trail doesn't happen. Put that bullet about 1/3 of the way UP from the belly line and tight behind the shoulder area and you should have a dead deer at the end of a short but readily obvious blood trail. That of course assumes you use enough gun and proper bullet to both get expansion and to exit.

Did the deer run with tail up or down? Did it hunch up at the shot or do a mule kick? What exactly did it do in terms other than run like it's tail was on fire? Just running fast with tail held high does not indicate a hit. Hunching usually indicates a gut shot and that mule kick usually means a dead deer after a not too long run.

Always try to identify the point where the deer left your sight and if you don't pick up a blood trail readily then to to that point where the deer left your vision and start from there.
 

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There is a big difference between 150 and 235 yards...How high are you sighted in at 100??? How high did you hold??? Did you re-sight in using the 150s or leave it as was???
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Point of aim is just behind the shoulder. I also shoot for the heart/lung shot if I can.
This deer bolted tail down, just as hard as it could go. It almost fell trying to turn to run back into the woods.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
As for sighting in, I sight for 25 yards with should put me dead on at 230 yard also. Just about an inch high at 100 yards. All minute of deer. I know the 150 grain shoots flatter than the 180 grain bullets. The 150 has about a 2 inch drop at 200 where the 180 has a 4 inch drop at 200 yards. I checked ballistics a bunch.
So as for the hold just center behind the shoulder, if it hit a little high I am okay a little low I still am okay.
 

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Since you used the Win ammo last night, did you sight it in at 100yds with that ammo since shooting the 180gr Fusion?

Tim
 

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Discussion Starter #7
No. I sighted in last year with the 180 Fusions and then checked just before this season and it was still on. Two years ago I used the 150 Winchester and Fusion. When sighting in with the 180 Fusions I don't think I adjusted any. The rifle was still hitting dead on.
Would the Poly coated bullets make that much difference?
 

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I'd shoot it at 100yds to see where you are, more than likely it's not close to what you think it is. After bore sighting, I always shoot at 25yds first and get it close to POA, then move to 100yds, very seldom is it close to what I want, but it gets me on paper at 100yds, and at ~250yds, it may be a gut shot or a complete miss.

Tim
 

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i can't say for sure but i believe that a .308 would need a lighter bullet than you're using if the deer are relatively small. in other words, a 150 grain bullet is marginal, i'd guess, for opening-up on a small whitetail like i'd expect to see in MOST places so far south as georgia. i think in a .30 caliber you ought to go with a 130 grain bullet to get more velocity and to open up the bullet better on a smaller critter.

the 180 grain bullet, in my humble opinion, is NEVER a good bullet on a whitetail or mulie unless it's the only option for miles around. i wouldn't use a 180 gr' projectile out of a .30 caliber rifle on the large deer we have here in ohio, nor up there in the area where milo hansen took his monster. it's relatively slow, relatively heavy-jacketed, and is too much bullet for anything less than a very large black bear. it's not really needed on a large hog, in my opinion. naturally if you're using a .30 caliber MEGA-MAG' like the "gee-whiz" group uses out of some of those bambi-blasters (that are stronger than a .300 Win' Mag') then maybe the velocity would open up the bullet on a chihuahua ! but i wouldn't go that route either !

i think you're choosing the wrong projectile, and can easily resolve that problem.

good hunting to you,

ss'
 

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SS, I have to disagree with you on the .308Win 180gr bullets for deer, I've killed a bunch with my 308 BLR over the last 20+yrs, either with the 180gr Failsafe or Rem Core-lokt, they work very well on blacktails and muleys alike, as well as elk, ya just shoot em in the boiler room and they die. ;)

Tim
 

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I've given up on everything but the Rem Core-lokts. They work.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
This year before the season I check the scope. It was dead on at 25 yards and was about 1 inch high at 100 yards. This is what I expected. This was also with the 180 grain federal fusion. Last year, I did not hunt fields, but year before I did. But I was using the 150 grain Winchester or 150 grain federal Fusion. I switched to the 180 grain last year because I wanted a little more foot pound energy. Last year had great results. The longest shot was 135 yards thru the Pines. This Spike the (on from above) was shot just before the 6 pointer. Good hit just behind the shoulder, bleed good, only went 30 yards.
My rifle a 308 Survivor with a Monte Carlo stock has not let me down. Other Officers that I work with call it a tactical deer rifle.
I hope that I had a clean miss. But I just can't get over the way the deer ran out of there. If you have ever saw one of the deer hunting shows, after the hit the deer bolts head long, this was very similar. Other times when I have missed in the past, I would get a flag and then the run. I just don't know.
 

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Go shoot it at 100yds and see where ya are, that's the only way to know what should happen next time. ;)

Tim
 

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One thing many do not realize, is the point of impact from a 150gr vs a 180gr can change dramatically. most often the 180 will impact higher, due the the longer "hang time" in the barrel, allowing recoil to kick the rifle up.

By all means, check the load you shot at the range you shot. You may well have hit him good, from the description you gave it sounds like you did. I'd search from the last point you saw him, in circular patterns (get some help) for several hundred yards, if need be. My guess, from the reaction you described, is you'll find him. Hopefully before the meat ruins.
 

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quickdtoo said:
SS, I have to disagree with you on the .308Win 180gr bullets for deer, I've killed a bunch with my 308 BLR over the last 20+yrs, either with the 180gr Failsafe or Rem Core-lokt, they work very well on blacktails and muleys alike, as well as elk, ya just shoot em in the boiler room and they die. ;)

Tim
tim'

no doubt that a bullet through the lungs, even a .22 long rifle, will topple a deer. i admit that's true. even muzzleloaders with roundballs can do it. but, with the question being about a blood trail, and trailing deer only to lose one, i think that the lighter bullet is what makes the difference on the lighter game. i can almost GUARANTEE you that a .22-250 with a 60 gr' Hornady SP will have a 'properly-hit' deer coughing up so much blood.......if it goes anywhere beyond 8 yds' from where it was hit in the first place.......that you'll have a blood trail that Stevie Wonder could follow! i've seen it done too many times by a landowner i know.

i may have said it wrongly, but there's no arguement about what will kill a deer. a lung shot is almost always fatal, i'd expect. as i've said before, however, it's tagging a deer (as on public hunting lands) that can become tricky when trailing up an animal. the lighter bullet will do it sooner, i believe, if of proper construction. that way somebody else hopefully won't beat you to your game animal with his/her tag.

all the best to you,

ss'
 

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I've never had a problem trailing them cuz they never went far, no blood trail is needed when they die in their tracks or real close to it. ;) My buddy liver shot one once with a 150gr Power-Shok from a .308Win, we followed blood drops for over 300yds, and I mean drops, one every 20' or so, it was almost 2hrs before we found it dead. So the wrong hit with even an excellent deer bullet will make for a long day. :'(

Tim
 

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The one thing I do to help track a deer is toilette paper. If I find blood I mark it. I may also use it to mark a trail If I find no blood. The paper will break down and will not hurt anything but sure makes it easier to keep yourself oriented and organized. It also comes in handy if nature call! ;D
Secondly, shoot what you sight in with. Shooting two or three different loads is begging for disaster. I have had to track a lot of deer. The only one that was mine, the first buck I ever shot. The rest of my tracking was for other people, mostly for kids with buck fever. A lot of times the deer head down hill and toward water. I don't know where you're hunting but the other place is thick cover. If you think it is impossible to get into that is where you will find it.
Good luck and let us know how it goes.
 
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