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223 for deer: never again!

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by Macchina, Nov 22, 2020.

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  1. entropy

    entropy Member

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    Well, it was 50% waste in my case. My Dad found it the next day right away, but the half that was on the ground did not look good, so we cut down the spine (before CWD) left that half for the coyotes. That was with a .30-06 with a 165 Partition that bang flopped a buck similar to it the year before. The difference? This one has been chased through a swamp by a very inept hunter, ( he fell down several times, got up cursing each time) and when it popped out on the logging road I was on, I took it with the same shot on the first one, through the aorta and both lungs. The first buck didn't even know I was there until that Partition hit him.
     
  2. Demi-human

    Demi-human Member

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    :rofl:

    I disagree with your premise, but, when found, good humor must be applauded these days!:)
     
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  3. marksman13

    marksman13 Member

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    3B64C1A2-DF00-4D52-861B-9DF4F9370A75.jpeg
    Lungs and spine are pretty vital and a high shoulder shot can find both while also breaking bones and immobilizing an animal. Keep shooting them anyway you want. This doe had nothing negative to say about the high shoulder shot, though I did not shoot her as high as the exit wound suggests. 828A99BC-8516-47E2-BF55-2B9FF15FE3F7.jpeg
     
  4. Hokkmike

    Hokkmike Member

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    Good read. Thanks. Was thinking of a 5.56 - .223 rifle, but would limit it to target and varmints now.....
     
  5. Peakbagger46

    Peakbagger46 Member

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    Sorry you didn’t recover your deer, but thank you for your humility in posting your experience so we can all discuss it and learn.
     
  6. JDeere

    JDeere Member

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  7. JDeere

    JDeere Member

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    You can argue your point till the cows come home but both of your pictures prove my point. Vitals location and destroyed shoulder. Carry on...
     
  8. marksman13

    marksman13 Member

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    And you can keep arguing yours. I’m obviously doing something right because my deer generally die where they stand and it has never mattered what my rifle was chambered in.
     
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  9. Orcon

    Orcon Member

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    Just wanted to chime in before this thread gets locked down due to pissing matches.


    I do use the 5.56 for medium game hunting and have had good success with it. However, it does have some serious limitations that need to be accounted for. Chiefly, low bc, poor sectional density and low impact surface area. So your bullet is going to bleed velocity, penatrate less tissue, and disrupt less tissue than other options. I pass up a lot of shots if I'm packing my AR for hunting if I can't get close enough to score a central nervous system hit or get a good bead on a forward shoulder shot. I took a decent buck this year using the forward shoulder method. There's a huge mass of nerves and arteries right at or just ahead of the front leg line that will flat out anchor game when hit. The 73gr ELD did a through and though on my deer this season at 225 yards and he died where he was standing.
     
  10. Picher

    Picher Member

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    Georgeous!!!
     
  11. dranrab

    dranrab Member

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    A heck of a lot of people have been killed from falls too, but I don't think anyone would suggest that capturing a live deer and throwing it off the roof of a house is a good way to kill them.

    Would you like to continue on with this reductio ad absurdum?

    I'll spell it out more clearly for those who are struggling with my point. Ammo makers have dumbed things down pretty well with their labeling. In the instance of the photo I posted, it shows pictures of light bodied animals. That is supposed to tell the user what the bullets design purpose is. When users shoot animals significantly larger and more solidly built than those for which a bullet was designed, it's not a caliber/chambering failure or a bullet failure when the animal isn't cleanly killed, it is a user error.

    My grandson and granddaughter have probably killed 20-25 deer between them using a 223. Factory Fusion bullets, partitions and 64 grain Nosler bonded bullets were used in all cases. Many of the deer died where they stood. None ran more than 40-50 yards before dying. The bullets almost always passed through. Vitals were demolished.

    I'd recommend that whatever chambering the OP uses that he studies the pictures on the box or otherwise does a little research on the bullets design purpose before using them on game.
     
  12. jmorris

    jmorris Member

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    I have killed lots of stuff with lots of stuff but never once killed one too dead.

    Big hogs and even much larger animals go “lights out” with a .22 LR in the right spot, a 300 win mag in the wrong spot and a 95 lb dressed weight deer will scamper off.

    If you are counting on it though and accuracy is equal, I tend to lean to more power and heavier bullets.

    I spend more time walking to the place I am going to hunt than it takes to sight in a rifle, so I would never let that be my excuse for not using something more appropriate for the job at hand.
     
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  13. dranrab

    dranrab Member

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    Where does mismatching the BULLET to the came factor into your assessment? That's what we are dealing with in the OP.
     
  14. Steve S.

    Steve S. Member

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    As someone has stated on this forum before, “It’s the Indian, not the arrow.”
     
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  15. Eagle103

    Eagle103 Member

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    Timely post for me. No simple answer to this. It all depends on the size of the deer you're hunting and the distance you're shooting. What works from a tree stand in Texas very well may not work hunting open ground in Minnesota.

    I've hunted with a 6.5 Grendel the last four years up here in Northern Minnesota. Had good luck with it last year taking two decent bucks, both just under 200 yards. One of my sons has also been using a Grendel the last few years. Probably taken at least a dozen does with no problem, also at ranges around 200 yards or less.

    This year I had a nice buck about 270 yards out. He was walking along a woodline and about to head back in so I took the shot. Watched the deer fold up as they always do (been hunting for over 40 years now so I've seen it many times) from a shot to the shoulder area. There was a slight ridge between us so I couldn't see him lying there but I was 100% confident he would be right where he dropped. Waited until dark to go pick him up and no deer in sight. Found an unimpressive blood trail going into the woods that eventually stopped. Never found him that night and not the next day either. Terrible feeling that is. My guess is the shot hit the deer right on a shoulder bone, knocked him over and somehow he got back up without me noticing and went back into the woods.

    Looking at the ballistics I'm no longer comfortable with 1,000-1,200 foot pounds as sufficient energy to reliably take care of a large deer. Another one of my sons has his own experience with a similar amount of energy not taking down a large buck. Around 350 yards with a 120g 7mm-08. Took a couple well placed hits to bring it down.

    As a consequence I'm done hunting here with the Grendel. It was a fun gun (AR-15) but I really have no reason to continue using it for my style of hunting. Back to my old 30-06. Never any drama with that.
     
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  16. Robert

    Robert Administrator Staff Member

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    Lots of good reading here. As always, uses what works best for you and allow it might different for someone else.
     
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