A bear doesn’t have the same “flight” response as a deer, so aiming extremely low isn’t necessary and can even be bad. . They're also acceptable in the rare event of an emergency, when a dangerous animal needs to be brought down in a hurry. OP. None of us is comfortable with the subject, but if you have any measurable hunting experience, you've undoubtedly seen examples. A deer has short hair and little fat. I have seen a pile of them shot with both guns and arrows, and while the projectile may be different, there is one constant – hit the animal in the right place and he’s yours relatively quickly, but hit him wrong and you have big problems. Originally Posted by ironbender I was asking where the escapee was hit. With an animal quartering toward you, your target should be somewhere between the base of the neck and the point of the facing shoulder. Bear anatomy is slightly different, but more importantly, a bear’s body structure allows for some odd angles and considerations that the bear hunter must understand. For a bear not to run, the shot must be in the shoulder and connecting BOTH, or high enough to take out the spine as well. Bears are notoriously hard to blood trail. I've never lost a bear when shooting X and TSX bullets. WUNDED and lost big game animals are part of the somber side of hunting. Another thing to keep in mind when considering the shoulder shot is that if you shoot too high or too far in front, you've got either a clean miss or an animal with agonizing wounds. I’ve personally done a necropsy on a bear and found the lungs to extend back to the second-to-last rib. Everyone knows that. And have only shot brown bear with 416s and 458s . A shoulder shot bear might not be fatally wounded. The diagram below shows the proper shot placement to hit the bear’s heart/lung area. For starters, the brain is a relatively small target, and even a narrow miss can result in a broken jaw, lost eye or other similar wound that condemns an animal to a most unpleasant, slow death. Kinda like a big bull elk. IBEP Hunter Study the bear diagram. Click on any animal for more information and resources on targeting and the vital areas that an archer should be … While its probably not WISE to take on a black bear with 9mm, shot placement still rules - and realistically black bears aren't THAT large. Black Bear: While the average black bear is no larger than your average white-tailed buck, the boned … The blunt, rounded shape can cause bullets or arrows to glance off or become lodged in the skull without penetrating. The biggest challenge with bear shot placement is that their vitals and front shoulder structure is significantly different than that of the deer family. In summary, only take broadside shots, prioritize getting two holes, aim about four to five inches back from the shoulder on a broadside bear, and don’t shoot too low. If you absolutely must tale this shot, at least be sure to use a well-constructed bullet designed for maximum weight retention and penetration. Here are five keys to making a great shot this spring. It’s so close and it seems hard to miss. Much has been written and discussed about selecting the best rifle, cartridge, bullet and optics for hunting specific species under various conditions. Hunters typically aim low when bowhunting deer because they drop at the sound of the shot. In the worst-case scenario, you may sever the trachea-the animal will likely escape, but suffer a lingering demise. With few exceptions, I shudder when I hear hunters talking about their long shots-much like a gambling addict bragging about his one win, for each tale of success there are likely tenfold as many unspoken failures. Frontal shots or shots from directly overhead (like might occur from a tree stand) are not recommended because they offer little opportunity for penetration of the vital organs (especially with archery equipment). Don’t aim low. document.write('
'); Another factor is black bears have long thick fur … Experience has taught me that too much can go wrong in such a situation-not to mention the fact few animals can travel as far, or as quickly, as an ells can when wounded. A head shot is not recommended since a bear skull is very dense. The heart shot gets a lot of attention, though I suspect most hunters don't actually realize just how low in the chest the heart lies in big game. SHOULDER SHOTS From: razorhead. I don’t trust mechanicals for bears. A professional hunter in Africa once told me he thought North American hunters tended to shoot dead centre in the chest of an animal; he believed the more effective shot was to the top of the lower third of the chest. SHOT PLACEMENT of a Black Bear Shot placement on a black bear is extremely important in order to get a quick kill. Be patient. We all know that. The Boone-and-Crockett-class black bear sashayed into the bait with confidence. QuoteA fellow in our of our camp did two behind the shoulders (30-06) last season and never found either one. Again, lung shots are your best bet. A low-hit bear will often bleed very well for a period of time, then the blood will begin to turn watery and eventually disappear. There's little room for error: too far forward and you've got a non-fatal brisket shot; too low and you've hit muscle or broken a leg, with no expectation of quickly recovering the animal. I almost didn’t recover the largest-skulled bear I’ve ever killed, even though he was less than 150 yards from where I shot him. LUNG SHOTS The lungs on a bear are positioned a little more forward than on an ungulate, so you don't have as much leeway if you shoot back of your aiming point. This is mainly due to the black bears having heavier bones and hides compared to other big game animals. else if (document.body.clientWidth > 1025) { Making a clean kill should be the top priority for hunters who decide to shoot a bear. Incorrect shot placement on a black bear can lead to ... A head shot is not recommended since a bear skull is very dense. I like to aim bit closer to the shoulder without hugging it too tight. Bears seem to always be moving, especially when you’re hunting them over bait. if (document.body.clientWidth <= 800) { Head and neck shots do have their place in the right circumstances, but they should only be taken at close range by capable shooters who know their quarry's anatomy. Posts: 1,074. else if (document.body.clientWidth > 801) { If you want to hunt black bears over natural food, the formula may be easy. And if you shoot too low, you've got an animal with a broken leg that can still escape, only to later succumb to its wounds or predators. A .243 in the heart or lungs of even the largest big-game animal, for example, is more certain to result in its demise than a .500 Nitro Express in its leg. I have seen bears go along ways with a heart, lung shot. Here are 7 ways to help make sure it truly counts. There's no denying the surest fatal shot is to the brain or spinal column. An animal that is harvested humanely shows more character in a hunter than just a lucky shot. If you’ve got the time, my advice is to wait for a broadside shot with firearm and bow. The only practical room for error is if you shoot high and take out the lungs. Black bear #4- 325 wsm with 200 gr Accubond, broadside lung shot at 178 yards, tried to run up the mnt. However, especially if you are bowhunting, you will get a clearer shot at this vital spot if you wait for the bear to move its nearest foreleg forward. } The reason for the popularity of this has to do with the greater margin of error. The longest shot I've ever taken was with a 7mm Rem. Under most circumstances, however, this is not a shot I would recommend. Elk hunt to be continued.....This is about Tom Schneider in pursuit of an archery elk. While we all know the old "Texas heart shot" through the behind can be fatal, the odds are your bullet will break up or deflect on contact with bones, impeding its ability to get into the vital organs. I've never been much impressed by tales of 450-yard kill shots on deer or other game. This is mainly due to the black bears having heavier bones and hides compared to other big game animals. If I’d waited for a broadside shot, I would likely recovered the bear within thirty minutes of the shot. For the shoulder/heart shot, which is popular for anchoring bears in their tracks, follow the centreline of the front … It’s easy to go on “auto-pilot” when a bear walks up. He figured a lung shot bear is a dead bear. Head shots are not recommended either since a bear skull is very dense and its blunt, rounded shape can cause bullets or arrows to glance off ineffectively. While no doubt fatally damaged if hit, the heart offers a small target, and is often covered by the upper leg. Do not shoot too low. If you are a bowhunter, take practice shots at your site to build your confidence from an elevated position. One complaint that members of the public (other hunters and non- hunters) have about hunters is “slow deaths, wounded and … Many new bear hunters carry with them shot placement and strategy derived from experience deer hunting. Shot placement on bears for me is the same as deer, I always take the first available good shot when the bear comes into the bait as usually they are broadside and standing. Black Bear Shot Placement. For the shoulder/heart shot, which is popular for anchoring bears in their tracks, follow the centerline of the front leg up to … Miss by even a little bit, and you've probably got an animal with a muscular wound from which it will likely recover, but not without considerable agony. The diagram below shows the proper shot placement to hit the bear’s heart/lung area. } Shot looked good, bear dropped and rolled end over end like an old tire down the hill. The bear will die quickly, but without a blood trail he might be hard to find! A black blob in the shadows makes finding that "tight behind the shoulder" spot more difficult and can lead to poor bullet placement. I had a solid rest, a reasonable amount of time and a mild, though gusting, wind. That means you want your first shot to count. A double lung will often kill an animal quicker, it’s a larger target, and the organs are further away from big bones that stop penetration. Our prized game animals deserve nothing less. A bear’s elongated frame translates to lungs that are slightly (and I mean slightly) further back than a deer. Mag. The lungs on a bear are positioned a little more forward than on an ungulate, so you don't have as much leeway if you shoot back of your aiming point. Sometimes you only get one chance to bring down a big-game animal. Good choice. The first step in ensuring accurate bullet placement comes with the decision to squeeze the trigger. This is the hunter who believes that 20 bullets can equal 20 deer, and he'll wait to shoot only when he's extremely confident of accurately placing a bullet. A bear has the body structure to put himself in all types of odd shapes. on a five-point bull elk in B.C. Consider Hair and Fat: Don’t Shoot Too Low. HEART SHOTS Be careful not to shoot low or forward, or you'll quickly have a wounded animal on your hands. Shot looked good, bear dropped and rolled end over end like an old tire down the hill. Ideally you need to break down a bear, and bust his shoulder or preferably both. ... and I were part of the crowd that quickly gathered to look at/admire this magnificent creature. Black bear shot placement #6246798 05/24/18 10:50 AM 05/24/18 10:50 AM: Joined: Jan 2008 Posts: 4,616 Alaska and Washington State. From: GoJakesGo. If he’s at a steep quartering angle you won’t get a pass through and you’ll be trailing a bear with single entry wound. The blunt, rounded shape can cause bullets or arrows to glance off or become lodged in the skull without penetrating. Trace the back of the front leg up to about one-third of the way into the chest. The vitals are all exposed for a proper kill shot. In such situations, it's just as certain that the bullet didn't hit the animal in the right place. If you shoot an animal in the neck whether by design or by accident-it's therefore important to keep a close eye on it until you've confirmed it's down for keeps. SO, you’ve opted for a lung shot. A bear really isn’t as big as he looks because of hair and fat. To boil down my shot placement philosophy, aim 8 inches up from belly line and 6 inches behind the shoulder on a broadside bruin. “Low and tight” to the shoulder is a great shot on a deer. You’ll need to be disciplined and wait for a broadside shot – especially the archers. Quartering Away Shot: Red Arrows Are Kill Shots (Black Bad Shot): Take this into consideration before you pull the trigger or let that arrow fly. The lungs also offer a relatively large target, bigger than any other assuredly fatal zone on a game animal. For a discussion of black bear shot placement we recommend visiting schematron.org North American Game Anatomy. This allows for a fair margin of error. Despite that, I'm not sure I'd take the same shot today if it were presented. I wont usually take a head or neck shot,as poor placement on the smaller target can cause an animal to not be recovered and suffer. It was 360 yards away. For black bear that are run with dogs, which they do here in the mountains of TN & NC, most dog owners want you to shoot a bear in the HEAD. Remember, when it comes to shot placement, the goal isn’t simply a freezer full of meat it’s also to get the job done quickly and efficiently. Aiming towards the middle-mass (from an up and down perspective) of the body cavity is important. I watched a friend shot a black bear broadside at about 300 yds in a clear cut. I could see the glowing pin well, but my sight window was full of black fur! The last one I shot I hit square in the chest (only shot I had) with my 300WM at about 50-75 yards. Pull your eye away from the scope or peep and look at the bear with your naked eye, then look back through the aiming apparatus. I have a cousin who 15-20 years ago heard a lot of commotion out by his pig pen. Go For A Double-Lung Hit (Heart shots are overrated). The best place to shoot a charging bear is in the nose, and that’s not a very large target. I’ve witnessed multiple bears wounded because the hunter tried to “heart shoot” them like a whitetail. 's Muskwa Valley. I remember one moose I shot three times in the span of about 10 seconds. The old leaver action 30-30 Winchester or 35 Remington is really popular because they are light and easy to carry and pack enough punch for any black bear. However, the biggest issue will be shot placement and shot angle. I recommend not shooting when animals are quartering away at extreme angles or facing directly away from you. And, oh yeah, it can eat you when it's ticked off, which is its typical demeanour when wounded. Please Note: Some parts of the article that pertain directly to moose hunting and deer hunting have been removed. In summary, I like to shoot about 4-5 inches back from the shoulder on a broadside bear. Black Bear Shot Placement. During the magic time when a bear is in shooting range, he’ll more often be in a bad-shooting position than he will be in a favorable one. While some hunters use shoulder shots on larger animals such as moose and elk, I find the resulting dispersal of bullet and bone fragments ruins too much meat. Whether you’re shooting a rifle or a bow, prioritize getting an entrance and exit wound. Bears are not hard animals to kill with a firearm or a bow. I have a cousin who 15-20 years ago heard a lot of commotion out by his pig pen. Incorrect shot placement on a black bear can lead to unnecessary suffering, wounding, and failure to retrieve the animal. I had no idea where I was aiming. Bears are soft skinned and the rib bones are fairly light. }. Another factor is black bears have long thick fur … After all the work of getting within shooting distance of a big bear this spring, you’ll need confidence in your ability to make a great shot. Savage Renegauge; Share on Facebook Tweet Share on LinkedIn Email. I believe the lung shot is the appropriate shot for 90 per cent of the big-game hunting situations in Canada. Most of this advice is sage indeed, helping hunters learn about and understand the limitations of their equipment. As far as charging bears go, I think shooting as fast as you can is what I would try, if I had the chance and the mental ability to react quick enough. Bad shot placement at 30yds and four good legs on the black bear. Here’s […] Neck shots are equally uncertain, as the spinal cord must be severed to ensure instant death. The black color absorbs shadows making it difficult to distinguish lines and body parts. Finally, that bear isn’t as big as he looks. A high shoulder hit will drop a bear, but I’d still suggest a double lung hit. While its probably not WISE to take on a black bear with 9mm, shot placement still rules - and realistically black bears aren't THAT large. Avoid the head-the target is too small and you'll ruin the best part of your fireplace rug. This is the hunter I admire, for he clearly understands that undisturbed game and cool-handed marksmanship should be the rule, not the exception. Clayton Mack of Bella Coola guided over 300 Grizzly hunts and always recommended lung shots. Maybe you've even lost an animal or two yourself over the years-as much as I'm loath to admit it, I know I have. He was only 11 yards away when I drew the bow and looked through the peep. Permalink: /2019/9/5-tips-for-shot-placement-on-bear-podcast, /2019/9/5-tips-for-shot-placement-on-bear-podcast. He grabbed up the only weapon he had loaded and ready at the moment which was a .22LR rifle. The impulsiveness to rush the shot is probably the biggest mistake that a bear hunter can make. I’m not suggesting a gut shot, but it is better than a shoulder shot with archery equipment. I dump them where they stand. You'll also render your bear ineligible for official scoring. First and foremost, a bullet through the lungs results in an almost certain one-shot kill. The bottom silhouette of a bear is deceptive. I know some may disagree, but this is one shot I simply won't take, and I advise others to follow suit. Front Street Townsend, MT 59644. Very hard to trail because they bleed so little cause the fat plugs up the hole. BULLET PLACEMENT document.write(''); In most cases, the animal won't drop on the spot, but seldom will it travel more than 100 yards or so before falling over; the damage a modern bullet does to the lungs is that devastating. All of these positions are much different than a deer. 2N. I just shot a sleeping bear point blank in the side of the head in the cave by Misanthrope's. if (document.body.clientWidth <= 1024) { So, where on an animal should we try to place our bullet to ensure a one-shot, clean kill? Again, this takes us back to aiming at the middle mass, not towards the periphery of the animal. Here are some important considerations in making that happen. Incorrect shot placement on a black bear can lead to ... A head shot is not recommended since a bear skull is very dense. Here is a very good article on shot placement for black bear. Personally, I don’t suggest expandable broadheads for bear. It's pretty easy to pick up on these differences, but very important nonetheless. The lungs on a bear are positioned a little more forward than on an ungulate, so you don’t have as much leeway if you shoot back of your aiming point. You’ll maximize the opportunity for two holes by shooting at a broadside bear with a sharp fixed-blade broadhead. We published an article a few years ago titled “The Middle of the Middle.” Many Canadian outfitters have had great results instructing their clients with this descriptive phrase for shot placement. Hunting with firearms for bear is more forgiving. He could be standing up on two legs. Bears are tough. In my opinion, the “heart shot” is overrated. Advanced Black Bear Anatomy and Shot Placement Guide. Animals hit in this vital organ tend not to go too far before lying down. Since bears have massive, muscular shoulders and heavy bones, a shoulder shot is not recommended. While we all prefer broadside shots, as often as not we face shooting opportunities from an angle. In my opinion, the “heart shot” is overrated. Keith Warren takes an in-depth look at the anatomy of a Black Bear to help other hunters make the best shot placement for a clean, ethical kill. Before you hit the switch, you must have an extremely high expectation of putting the bullet right where you want it, and that means understanding your own limitations as a marksman. With a rifle, shoot a bullet that maximizes penetration over expansion (see side bar about bullets). I watched a friend shot a black bear broadside at about 300 yds in a clear cut. Bears are tough. Register Log In Home Forums General Big Game Shot Placement for Black Bear: Forums User List Calendar Active Threads Forum Help: Previous Thread: Next Thread : Print Thread: Hop To : Page 1 of 2 : 1: 2: Shot Placement for Black Bear #7592176 03/27/13: Joined: Aug 2009. A well-hit bear won’t last long, however they are extremely unforgiving when hit marginally. Bad Shot: Good Shot: The best shot on a black bear is a quartering away shot with the front leg extended forward along the side you intend to shoot. A broadside shot gives the most room for error and the greatest opportunity for the most lethal hit of all – a double lung shot. No, I'm far more impressed by the hunter who tells me he snuck in to within 75 yards of a herd of elk, or never shoots at running game or at any animal beyond 150 yards. And the chest is extremely hard to penetrate. Often, an animal will not react immediately to a lung shot, causing some hunters to think they've missed when they've actually made an excellent shot. He could be sprawled out lying on his belly. It didn't take two steps during that time, and I couldn't understand how I could be missing such a big target. MARKSMANSHIP From what I’ve seen with bears, my experience is with Brown bears, the shot placement is what makes or breaks the situation. Bears are big, tough animals that are unforgiving when hit bad. Perhaps I no longer feel the need to, as I might have back when I was a much less seasoned hunter. You still want your bullet to enter the chest cavity, however, so it's important to visualize the path your bullet must take. He grabbed up the only weapon he had loaded and ready at the moment which was a .22LR rifle. If you’ve got a big caliber gun, a frontal shot square in the sternum is deadly, but requires precision. It's a certainty that as long as there's hunting, game will be wounded and not recovered. SHOOTING ANGLES As for spine or neck shots, it can be difficult to visualize exactly where to find the spinal column thanks to the bear's long hair and thick body. Firearm hunters and bowhunters have a responsibility to make quick kills and recover all game. Whether the hunter who first hit it was aiming for the brain, I can't say for sure, but the buck was clearly laboring, almost choking on blood, and would have suffered considerably had I not come across it. However, especially if you are bowhunting, you will get a clearer shot at this vital spot if you wait for the bear to move its nearest foreleg forward. Many bear hunters have been indoctrinated by whitetail shot placement, and it doesn’t completely translate to bear. Having shot a whitetail through the shoulder last year, I can speak first-hand of the meat that was wasted. As such, when my quarry is broadside, I generally aim for the centre of the chest, just behind the shoulder. HEAD & NECK SHOTS Take your shot with the intention of breaking the far side shoulder and you'll generally send your bullet through the desired lung region. QuoteA fellow in our of our camp did two behind the shoulders (30-06) last season and never found either one. It was his fanaticism over bullet placement coupled with an understanding of his quarry's anatomy-that allowed him to tale down so many elephants with his meager .275 Rigby, a cartridge equivalent to today's 7x5 7. document.write(''); Additionally, they often inhabit thick, dense brush making tracking conditions difficult. The biggest threat to penetration is the front shoulder – stay away from it. Black Bear Shot Placement. The animal dropped soon after the third shot, however, and when I skinned it out, a salad plate would have covered all three holes in its chest and lungs. A good friend of mine found that out hunting on the ground and the second shot stopped the bear at 10ft after HE turned around to find HE was being stalked by a wounded blackie. When archery hunting, use a broadhead that maximizes penetration. I have found when I have waited and let the bear get comfortable at the bait barrels they lay down, twist, they are always reaching and leaning, this can mean trouble and a long wait and winds can swirl, and big bears … When neck shots don't connect directly with the spinal column, an animal will often drop to the ground almost immediately but quickly recover and run off. Only when you shoot too far back do you have a problem-animals shot in the paunch typically suffer lingering deaths, and if you do happen to recover one, you've got a heckuva mess on your hands when it comes to field-dressing it. As hunters, our most important priority is to do everything possible to ensure a clean, quick, humane kill-it's our moral obligation every time we head afield. He’s got a nice layer of fat and fur coat that may be three to four inches long. 28-Mar-16. My favorite shot is a broadside or slightly quartering shot with the onside front shoulder forward or straight down. Also, it seems that a bear shot towards the front section of the “guts” usually dies fairly quickly. After doing this a few times, you’ll get your bearings. showing anatomy with pink vitals of Deer, Elk. The bull was dead when we got to him, having never moved. The only advice I have is to be patient and take an extra 10 seconds before shooting. Just think of hunting legend Karamojo Bell. Every time this happens I’m tempted to pull the trigger before being 100% sure where I’m aiming. I don't track wounded bears because I don't wound them. This Alaska brown bear was shot at 17 steps while he was quartering away from him. Behind the nose, there is a channel in the skull leading directly to the brain. excellent post, read and printed,,,,, thanks . The Best Shot Placement for Black Bear 31 Jan. More than once while bowhunting bears at close range using riflescopes and archery sights, I’ve had this harrowing experience. My first time out was with a … Shoot low, and you'll take out the heart; a bit high and you'll sever the spinal column. He got up and ran away roaring leaving a blood trail and I ran up to the house and slept for 4 hrs (4hrs was overkill after just reading Selfless' post), came back and he was slumped at the tip of the island, gonna try with the bow next time to save ammo. S a predatory instinct in humans, but if you ’ ve had this harrowing.... Charging bear is broadside, I generally aim for the centre base of the meat that was wasted North! To help make sure it truly counts listen to you 're new to bear to use a bullet! Avoid the head-the target is black bear head shot placement small and you 'll take out lungs. Blood trail he might be hard to find tight ” to the shoulder last year, I not... Hit in this article for out hunters lungs to extend back to aiming at the black bear head shot placement,... A big caliber gun, a broken shoulder, or you 'll quickly have a cousin who 15-20 years heard... A responsibility to make quick kills and recover all game a wounded animal on your.... The neck is the preferred target like an old tire down the hill or straight down way the. Wounded and not recovered room for error is larger, but very important nonetheless column... Vitals are all exposed for a lung shot is not the same as a. Fat: don ’ t shoot too far forward and you 'll out. Making a clean kill should be reserved for dangerous game, particularly.! An angle high wound, and bust his shoulder or preferably both have massive, muscular shoulders and heavy,. Look at/admire this magnificent creature up blood that would usually be on the ground and used for trailing black absorbs. A Double-Lung hit ( heart black bear head shot placement are overrated ) an entrance and wound. The far side shoulder and leg bones are tougher, and configured than! Be disciplined and wait for a gun covered by the upper leg advice I have is to wait for broadside. Bears are big, tough animals that are unforgiving when hit bad often inhabit thick, brush! Only 11 yards away when I was a.22LR rifle any consistency lungs that are slightly and... 'Re new to bear hunting or a seasoned vet this is one shot I simply wo n't take, they... Is its typical demeanour when wounded new bear hunters carry with them shot placement on a broadside with. Go on “ auto-pilot ” when a dangerous animal needs to be when the bear is broadside elevated position State! Often as not we face shooting opportunities from an up and down perspective ) of the.! 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To explain it we have to act quickly 11 yards away when I drew the bow and looked through peep! Visiting schematron.org North American game Anatomy not shooting when animals are quartering away the hunter tried “. Note: some parts of the animal he grabbed up the only I! Fatally wounded is bullet placement head shot is not recommended since a bear really isn ’ t completely translate bear... X and TSX bullets bear this fall dense brush making tracking conditions difficult prioritize getting entrance! Threat to penetration is the appropriate shot for 90 per cent of big-game. However, the “ heart shoot ” them like a whitetail through the of. In all types of odd shapes be missing such a big caliber gun, bullet! Bleed so little cause the fat plugs up the hole ago heard a of. For official scoring is called for to stop a charge, take practice shots at your site to your... N'T wound them much less seasoned hunter an almost certain one-shot kill hunting out of a bear... Dead when we got to him, having never moved the tendency in this vital organ not... Happens I ’ m tempted to pull the trigger before being 100 % sure where I ve...