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Hunted with compound for years but this will be my first year hunting with a crossbow. What is your experience with a deer ducking the shot to a certain degree? With a 370fps bow is it marginal?

Really just curious but I do have a ton of does on the property I hunt and I plan on taking all of them with my crossbow and in my experience there’s nothing more jumpy than an alert doe. Thanks!
 

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Here is a deer that caught me pulling the trigger in a ground blind. she was at 27 yards and I was aiming just behind her left front leg for a DL shot. The arrow went in high as you can see and came out behind her right front leg about the height I was aiming. She almost jumped the string.
 

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Hunted with compound for years but this will be my first year hunting with a crossbow. What is your experience with a deer ducking the shot to a certain degree? With a 370fps bow is it marginal?

Really just curious but I do have a ton of does on the property I hunt and I plan on taking all of them with my crossbow and in my experience there’s nothing more jumpy than an alert doe. Thanks!
I shoot excalibur 380. I shoot 40 yards tops anything beyond that is questionable on a game that is on alert.


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I often wondered why we refer to it as "Jumping the string", when in most cases deer actually duck or crouch upon hearing the string, prior to jumping. It's far more likely one shoots over the deer or winds up hitting the spine due to this reaction. Just sayin. :whistle:
 

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I often wondered why we refer to it as "Jumping the string"
Bulldog... It's kinda like "jumping the gun" in a track meet-cheating on the start-beating the arrow-duckin' the string. What ever you want to call it; it's real. Robert shows a great example of what can happen to a crossbow archer. Visualize the heart inside the chest with a 1/2" dot on it and shoot the dot, not the body. You'll win a helluvalot more that you lose.:p
 

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Deers head is down,they are already half crouched. deer head up lot farther for them to duck.
The picture I showed above her head was up and staring at me when I pulled the trigger, my fault as I had to turn and shoot out the side window on my blind and got caught moving. I thought I had made a perfect DL shot until I got to her and saw that she had ducked and tried to spin away as I pulled the trigger. I was using an Excalibur M350 that day shooting about 330 fps. I never saw her move until after I heard the arrow hit her. It is amazing how fast they can duck and spin.
 

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Over the years, I have shot numerous deer anywhere from 15 to 50 yards, with a crossbow shooting about 340fps. I have never had 1 deer jump the string. My opinion is if you are shooting at a deer that is in a normal/relaxed state of mind, and with the speed of the arrow, no problem. If you attempt shooting a deer that is on alert, or as in Roberts story, "high Alert" the deer will react. The speed of the arrow and the distance will determine how much the deer will drop. In conclusion,my suggestion, if at all possible, refrain from shooting at an alert deer.
 

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Hunted with compound for years but this will be my first year hunting with a crossbow. What is your experience with a deer ducking the shot to a certain degree? With a 370fps bow is it marginal?

Really just curious but I do have a ton of does on the property I hunt and I plan on taking all of them with my crossbow and in my experience there’s nothing more jumpy than an alert doe. Thanks!
I suspect many a missed shot gets blamed on a deer jumping the string, when in reality, we may not want to admit we messed up. Listen to these guys telling you not to shoot at a deer that is watching you shoot at it. They know what they are talking about.
 

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IMHO if a deer is jumping the string at the speed most crossbows shoot today you are taking too long a shot. For me 35 yards is a long shot - 20-25 is better. They may hear the TWANG but the arrow is through them and sticking in the ground before they are able to react.

A problem I encounter is shooting at a walking or moving deer. If i fail to stop them with a "mouth bleat" my shot often ends up further back than I intended.
 

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never mind...don't want to get involve in this one, will read only
 

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A fully alerted deer can beat a fast crossbow. I shot at one looking straight at me. It was about 30 yds. At the shot the deer spun around and avoided the arrow. I had a lighted nock on it and it was close to dark so I tracked the flight of the arrows and the deer movement. Not every alert deer will do this but they can avoid an arrow if they choose.
 

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Inside of 40 yards, a feeding deer is a dead deer if you can hold it where it needs to be. An alert deer? (I shot one once that was being pushed by a coyote....didn't get the shot on the coyote though dang it!) I held on the heart and hit above middle ribs. It was a 35 yard shot and he ran maybe 75 yards.
 

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Bulldog... It's kinda like "jumping the gun" in a track meet-cheating on the start-beating the arrow-duckin' the string. What ever you want to call it; it's real. Robert shows a great example of what can happen to a crossbow archer. Visualize the heart inside the chest with a 1/2" dot on it and shoot the dot, not the body. You'll win a helluvalot more that you lose.:p
I've seen it happen plenty of times on TV. I agree that a deer on high alert is likely to be skittish and crouch to whirl and run upon hearing the string. I suppose I am in the minority here, as I have had no issue taking a 50 yard shot with a compound bow. As long as the deer is calm and doing it's thing, I will fire at 50 yards but no further.
 

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I've seen it happen plenty of times on TV. I agree that a deer on high alert is likely to be skittish and crouch to whirl and run upon hearing the string. I suppose I am in the minority here, as I have had no issue taking a 50 yard shot with a compound bow. As long as the deer is calm and doing it's thing, I will fire at 50 yards but no further.
Deer are probably more likely to react to the sound of a archery shot at close range (20-30 yds) than over 40. So distance is not the overriding factor. They can react to a close shot (20 yds) very effectively. You are correct in saying that it is not common but seen on TV a lot. I have only had a deer "jump" my string a few times in over 100 harvests over 40 years. It does happen though.
 

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String jump can be an issue depending on the conditions at the time of the shot. 25-35 yards is where it can be the worst, but even then, it is only a concern if you are shooting at an alert deer. Closer than that, with a 370 fps bolt, the won't have time to move far enough a bad miss by the time it gets to it. Farther than that, is beyond the "danger zone" where a deer will react to the sound of the crossbow releasing it's energy.

In general, a crossbow is far less likely to cause a deer to go on high alert, because no sudden fast movement is required when the deer is in close, as it would be to draw a conventional bow. I struggled with that a bit using my vertical bow, catching (3) deer in the shoulder blade when they ducked, and another thru the neck That one was recovered, because the broadhead sliced the jugular vein, and chances are that the (3) shoulder blade hits fully recovered. I know one did because a friend took it a month later with a rifle and the wound was healed except for a nice scar.

The first deer I killed with my 300 fps crossbow was 59 yards out at the shot. I slightly misjudged the range, which turned out to be a good thing. That is well beyond "the danger zone". Because of that, the deer did not duck, but the arrow struck about 8" lower than I intended, thinking it was only 50 yards out. The penetration was poor at that range (only 8" into the deer). Fortunately, that was enough to get it all the way thru the buck's heart. Had it struck center-lung where I had intended, it likely would have only penetrated a single lung, making for a much tougher recovery.

Last year I killed my largest antlered buck with that same crossbow, with a center-lung broadside shot at 25 yards. That one had seen me up in my stand before I saw him from 70 yards away, and had locked eye-contact with me. My head and shoulders were fully exposed above the three foot wall around my blind. I stayed motionless until he lowered his head and began to move closer. In "super-slow" motion, I was able to get my eye in line with the scope. At 25 yards, all I had to move was my trigger finger as his shoulder moved past the crosshairs. Had I been armed with a vertical bow, and needed to draw, he would be a fine 4.5 year old this fall, rather than the tasty 3.5 that we are almost thru eating.
 

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I often wondered why we refer to it as "Jumping the string", when in most cases deer actually duck or crouch upon hearing the string, prior to jumping. It's far more likely one shoots over the deer or winds up hitting the spine due to this reaction. Just sayin. :whistle:
LOL, you are over thinking. A standing deer will have to crouch to make a move. Think of yourself trying to take off in a dead run from standing. Knees bent, posture to retain balance, and loading the muscle to get the best spring into a move. It is the squat before the jump that causes the miss.

For the question, I have only had one deer dump string (compound). Missed it completly. Arrow sailed over the back. Not the worst thing that could have happened, in fact I'd rather that, than a bad shot. If they are alert, frightened, edgy, pass on the shot, the arrow won't get there before the reaction. If they are at ease, they may not even give notice of hearing the bow. I've seen them milling around after being hit, just like wandering around before the shot.
 
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