Why so many DRT online?

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I spent a lot of time hunting with veternarians as both my father and brother are DVMs, this makes for pretty good assessments of what happend and cleaning game sometime becomes part autopsy.
We have talked and there are many variables that could be at work one I've pondered on is were the lungs full or empty having an effect they both seamed to think it was very possible.
Yeah,those truck deer are hard to come by.I once waited until a buck walked between 2 pickups and was well clear before I shot him.The trucks were on the neighboring property at the bottom of the hill.When he crossed the line into the meadow I was watching it was ok to shoot.Unfortunately,my truck was at the top of the hill and I would have had to get him over a fence down there.
In August I was on a hunt and decided that my confidence had reached the point that I want to move away from the double lung shot and try for heart shots believing these would bring about a more expedient end to the animal. Fortunately I had good opportunities and they went as follows;

Kudu ewe at about 60yds with .375 and 300gr. Accubonds. She rand about 10yards, heart was destroyed and front right leg was broken.

Bushbuck ewe at about 80yds with 6.5mm and 130gr Accubonds. She dropped on the spot and kicked a little then expired, heart was destroyed as was the front left leg.

Warthog boar at about 60yards, .375 with 300gr. Accubonds. He ran / scooted about 25 yds when my friend popped a .308 round in to him. Heartshot front left leg broken.

Impala ewe at about 200yds with a .375 with 300gr. Accubonds. Dropped on the spot and kicked a little before expiring. Heartshot front right leg broken.

So 50% dropped on the spot even if they kicked for 20 or 30 seconds.

Despite shooting very well, for me it was a failed experiment. In all cases pretty much lost a forequarter of meat, due to impact with the bone. The double lung shot is not dissimilar in result but with reduced meat damage and perhaps they run 30 or 40 yards, no big deal. From now I will be head / neck hunting if the shot presents, otherwise double lung.

DRT is often a boast of shooting ability. In my hunting experience and circles I know one guy who shoots exceedingly well and he generally shoot head shots and that for me is truly DRT. They drop in their tracks and never flinch thereafter.
Andrew - thanks for sharing that. I like the very straightforward approach based on experience, observation, and facts.
My observations over the past two years:

2012-2013 season:

1. Shot 1 doe at 30 yards with 150 grain 30-06. Heart shot. Dropped in its tracks. Once it fell on its side, she kicked for about 2 seconds before expiring.

2. No other hunts to speak of. Learned lesson the hard way not to sign up for deployments during hunting season.

2013-2014 season:

1. Opening day, shot a doe at last light. 75 yards. heart shot. same 30-06. Dropped in tracks. Dead by the time I reacquired in my scope.

2. First week of November, 9 point buck. Big boy. Shot with 3" Magnum buckshot at 25 yards. Ran almost 40 before collapsing (which I heard). Dead when I found him 30 minutes later. 14" buckshot spread all centered around his vitals area.

3. Last week of gun season, late December. Shot a doe with same 30-06. I felt myself pull the shot. She ran. I was stupid and flushed her from brush because I went looking for a blood trail. I aimed at the heart, but like I said i made a bad shot. Ultimately I fell into some deep water. That was the end of that hunt.....it was late December. I was soaked and a good long walk from my truck.

4. New Year's Eve: Last day of the season. 2 minutes left of legal shooting. Good sized doe steps out of the brush. Dropped in her tracks, again with 30-06 and 150 grain bullet. She fell, kicked for 3-4 seconds and expired. forgot to mention...heart shot.

It is possible to drop a deer in its tracks. It is also possible to make a bad shot then fall in a creek, get lost in the brush, and finally make it back to one's truck with one's own tail between their legs.
Although I never kept any formal records I have a reasonable guess as far a number of DRTs go. I've killed at least 100 or more over the years (including 9 in one season). I've used everything from a .22H up to .338 WM, 45/70, muzzleloaders and .357, .41 and .44mag revolvers. I've only experienced three DRTs with revolvers - and only one ran more than 50 yards - and about the same or slightly fewer with muzzleloaders compared with centerfire rifles.

Off hand I can recall about 5 DRTs with MLs. Of all the others I'd guess some one out of five, at least, were DRTs.
It's the Internet, is why. If Al Gore hadn't invented (or lied about doing so) it people would be more honest on it.

I think anyone that says everything they have ever shot never moved from the spot it was in when the bullet or shot struck it, hasn't shot very many animals. When everything is perfect they can be turned off like a light switch but it is foolish to think it always goes that way.

Maybe they are just lazy and say they "missed" instead of tracking a wounded animal. That would account for "all are DRT".
dead right there changes alot depending on whos talking.
just like antler size.

if no one is around, its common for a half mile track for a wunded dear to become "i shot this deer, and it fell dead on the spot"
I've taken several hundred deer. I've grown to prefer the center shoulder shot. I've used about every cartridge out there. Mostly, 7mm Mag., in my youth, a few decades of .30/06, and for the last few years .308. The behind the shoulder shot deer usually runs for a few seconds. Anything high, think close to spine, drops them there. Center shoulder shot will typically hit bone and take out the transmission. If not a drop there, it will be only a few feet. No tracking but you lose the shoulder meat and the front end is a mess while field dressing. Exceptions to this have been several deer taken with .22 center fires and .243 rifles. They are less predictable. Bullet choice becomes very important. A good bullet allows bigger caliber performance but a typical bullet can result in some tracking. I've had doe go over 100 yards, with perfect placement with the .223. My favorite meat gun is a Ruger 77/.357. With 158 grain flat nose jacketed bullets deer typically go about 50 yards. But you can eat right up to the bullet hole. Almost no blood shot mess to deal with. Unfortunately, range is limited to about 125 yards for me. This does take care of most hunting though.

Yep, pretty much sums up my experience. My grandpa insisted on shoulder shots and I've not forgotten the lesson. I know lots of folks gripe about meat lost, but .257 or .308 in my experience doesn't do a lot of meat damage on shoulders and, hell, I grind it all, but the back strap, tenderloins and a few rump/round roasts anyway. If I lose a little shoulder meat, ain't like I'm going to starve to death. Rather have a little shoulder meat damaged than lose a whole deer. The woods are THICK around here and tracking is a chore.
Well, I don't deer hunt but every hog I've shot has been DRT.

Yep, none of them ran so much as a foot. They were dead before they even hit the ground.

At least, that's what I tell my wife, who hates to think that any animal might suffer in this world. As long as the hogs are killed instantly, she has no qualms about eating the meat.

Yessir, none of them even so much as flinched once they hit the dirt.

That's my story, and I'm sticking to it !!
I had my first DRT last year. Button buck at 87 yards with a 20 ga slug. Double lung, slug under the skin on the opposite side. Remington Accutip.
Most others have run in the 20-50 yard range.
Yes, bullet selection is very important. I loaned my 7mm to my son along with my ammo. I had both deer and elk loads. He chose the Elk loads thinking bigger is better. That season got a call requesting my services as a tracker. He shot a deer in the chest but could not find it. The area was thick cover and no snow. He showed me where he shot it and I picked up the trail. I found the deer less than 200 yards away. There wasn't much blood on the trail until the end. Turns out that he shot it head on and the bullet went through the deer length wise without expanding until into a rear quarter. The Elk loads mostly penetrated without expansion and did not do much damage. From then on he knew to use the correct loads. I have had some very close to DRT with that rifle with deer loads. I have made dozens of heart lung shots with several rifles and shotgun slugs. A couple were DRT but most took anything from a couple steps to 75 yards. The 75 yard deer was shot through the heart and both lungs with a 30-06 leaving a massive wound and a wide blood trail. I was amazed. I don't think there is anyway to be sure of DRT, just dead. Double shoulder shots do drop them quickest but you ruin meat and the deer may not die until you give it a second shot. In a deer the joint is not bone either. As I said before head and neck shots are low percent in hunting in the wild. I have no idea how hunting conditions are in Africa and you have the right to make your own choices. I used to teach hunter ed classes and I always taught and believed that the sportsmanlike and humane shots were heart shots or Lungs preferably both. They are always fatal and usually very quickly. Even brain shots are not always fatal.
There seem to be a large number of doubters here despite several people saying that a large percentage of their kills on whitetails are DRT.
I define DRT as dropping in their tracks and expiring right there. A spine shot will drop a deer right there but it often takes a finishing shot, or a bit of time, for them to expire. It's still a DRT if the D stands for dropped. If we insist on the D standing for Dead then I think I have had maybe two in my life and those were head shots where the brain was destroyed.
I can only think of one time in my hunting life where I needed a finishing shot on a deer I shot. Gut shot buck. I have missed many times. I have only lost two deer that I hit and never found but I have found a few the next day.
A double lung shot is seldom going to produce a DRT. The deer will be very dead very quickly but can often run for several seconds. Where I hunt on my land those several seconds can mean 100 yards or more through some extremely thick underbrush and swampy bottoms or even over onto the neighbors property. That's not a problem for me as my neighbors are good friends but, as someone else mentioned, that generally is going away from the truck and the road. 30 years ago I thought nothing about dragging a deer for a mile. We didn't have 4 wheelers back then. Now I moan and find help if a deer is 100 yards from a road.
Anything behind the lungs is a mistake ( unless it is a quartering away shot that enters behind the lungs). It doesn't mean that the deer doesn't expire quickly and it can result in a DRT. I had a DRT on a running doe several years ago when I hit her in the rear hind quarter. Trashed a lot of meat and she didn't die real quickly but she only traveled as far as her momentum carried her.
From my personal experience I think that the close range heart shots tend to get you a DRT. It doesn't take Daniel Boone to make a heart shot from a deer stand on a broadside deer feeding on acorns. 30-06, 3x9 scope, deer blind, relaxed deer often equals DRT.
Shooting at a deer 300 yards away as he/she feeds along the edge of a bean field or even 100 yards away as he is trotting away doesn't seem to get many DRT's.
I've been fortunate in the DRT department I guess.
Now I'm not setting myself up as an expert, as I've only killed 10 deer, but out of that 10, 7 of them didn't make it out of their shadow.

The 7 that were DRT, 3 were killed with a .280 Rem with ballistic silvertips and 3 were with a .30-06 and ballistic tips. The last one was with a muzzleloader and it was a poor shot that hit the neck and broke it.

The ones that were not DRT, one with a .30-06 and a factory Remington core lokt, another with the '06 and a Hornady SST and one with a .243 and a factory Federal soft point.

The controlled expansion soft point bullets are very reliable killers and the couple that ran on me didn't go far. Both were found quickly within 50 yards of where I shot them, so no complaints. The one that ran off 40 yards or so with the SST didn't strike the shoulders and was a double lung shot that barely clipped the top of the heart. It was easy to find.

If you want DRT performance the ballistic tips and Sierra GK BTHP bullets are the way to go. They expand quickly and violently, spraying the chest cavity with copper and lead fragments (especially if the range isn't long). This increases the chance of the shock dropping them right there. At least that's my theory based on the deer I've shot, which admittedly isn't that vast of a pool to infer from.
I routinely take spine or high shoulder shots with my 7mm, and most are "down" if not "dead" pretty much instantly. I'll take a bit of meat loss over possibly losing the whole critter, especially if its a buck destined for the wall.
I've taken close to but less than two dozen deer (all doe, Texas sized), and only two did *anything* other than flop over, kick their legs in the air, and expire without moving from where they fell. One ran about ten yards before piling up, and the other ran in a 20 yard circle and piled up right back where I'd shot her.

This, with a mixture of chamberings - mostly 7.62x39 but some 30-30, a 7x57 (my first deer, actually, taken with an 1895 Mauser), a couple with 308, and some with 6.8SPC. All were traditional heart/lung shots, and the one that ran was actually a classic "shoot 'em in the white spot" frontal shot using a Ruger Frontier in 308 that blasted her heart into jelly - she left a 12"-18" wide blood stream from start to finish.
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Some interesting stories here.
I have killed a lot of deer in my time as I started deer hunting in 1966 and there are an awful lot of deer here in Texas.
But out of all those deer there were probably less than ten that were DRT.
And it might have been even less than ten.
Most don't go more than several feet to maybe thirty yards before piling up and expiring.
A couple have run a long distance.
I shot a buck one year through the heart with a .270 at 60 yards that ran almost 100 yards in a straight line.
Every deer reacts differently to a shot.
I don't care much for neck shots as I too have had a couple of bad experiences with using that method.
Although I have anchored on the spot at least two deer by hitting them where the base of the neck meets the body while the deer is standing broadside to me.
Failed? The deer I shot at 5 yards with a 7 mag is on my wall…not exactly a fail.

It was an interesting hunt. He was shot in the heart…it was blown to pieces when I examined it…and ran 100 yards. Didn't leave a drop of blood for the first 20 yards. I found a circle of hair about 7 feet wide on the ground next to where he was standing…I saw the hair get blown off him…if you filled a canon with deer hair and set it off it gives you an idea of what it looked like when the bullet hit. A huge ball of hair left the opposite side of that deer the moment it was struck. It left no blood though. After about 20 yards I found a drop or two. Then drops became a trickle, then trickles became puddles where he stopped to figure out what was going on, puddles became buckets, then he piled up.
Just yanking your chain gspn :)
I have killed about 20 or so white tails and would say my "DRT" shots have been about 20%. I have noticed that broad side shots (which I prefer) almost never produce a deer that is DRT. Front on shots in the brisket or neck have almost always put the animal down instantly. But there is more room for error. DRT is not a huge deal for me but it doesn't hurt either. I'll take boiler room shots all day if they present themselves.
I've taken somewhere around a hundred whitetails in my forty years of hunting them. My main three rifles used have been the 7mm mag,.308 and .243. And some various others, but mostly those three. I've also hand loaded for all those calibers during this time. I've had probably more DRT's with the 7mag, but I hunt with it the most also. Like some other poster's have said, I truly think it's the animals condition and attitude at the time of the shot and the shot placement and bullet type. I've had several double lung pass throughs where the animal dropped. It was when the animal was not spooked or had been fighting. Adrenaline is the key IMO, excluding head or spine hits.
As a new hunter, this has been a good and informative thread.

I've only taken 3 deer so far. The first 2 were nearly DRT. I had a good bead on the 3rd, but she moved an instant before the shot broke, and my immediate gut feeling was that I hit her poorly. When she ran off into the brush, I was certain of it, and also certain it was going to be a long night.

We quickly found her about 20 yards in the brush, though, and to my surprise, it was a good boiler room hit, just a little more quartered than I intended. Despite this, I've always held some feeling that I took a bad shot, since she didn't DRT, so this thread's been a good reality check for this newb.
Despite this, I've always held some feeling that I took a bad shot, since she didn't DRT, so this thread's been a good reality check for this newb.

Oh yeah, it's not uncommon.
The one I shot that ran the farthest was quartering towards me. The bullet entered right at the shoulder, pulverized one lung and ended up just under the skin by the off side hind quarter. It was a good shot but it was a big bodied buck that was just one tough dude.

He had been running and I grunted to stop him so his adrenaline was pumping pretty good. I'm sure that's why he made it as far as he did.

Definitely do not be discouraged if they don't drop immediately.
^^ Absolutely! I do NOT expect a DRT nor am I disappointed when it doesn't happen. Tracking is an art that I am pretty darn good at but would rather not practice too much. I will refuse to let people come back to my land if I don't feel they put in enough effort to find a wounded deer. Please don't say " I missed" unless you have gone over and can verify that it was a clean miss. I have found a lot of deer that a hunter "missed", some within 50 yards of the shot.
I shot a very nice 8 pointer about 20 years ago while hunting with my young son in a stand in GA. That son is now 24. The buck was chasing a doe and I shot him in the middle of a hay field at just over 350 yards. He humped up and ran off the field so I felt pretty sure I had gut shot him. I got in the truck and went home to let him bed down and took up the trail the next morning. He ran maybe 150 yards, 100 or so into some planted pines, and bedded down. I never found a single drop of blood but I worked that area until I found him in a clump of underbrush, curled up. If I had tried to find him that night I would have bumped him and probably never found him as there was no exit wound and the blood pretty much stayed inside the body cavity.
I have shot my fair share of whitetail and generally look for double lung or neck shots.
I have seen several DRT but many more just run off or lay down and expire shortly after. Not sure why some are DRT and some are not but it really makes no difference to me when I am grilling up some back straps.
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