Asiatic Water Buffalo Shot Placement

Discussion in 'Articles' started by PaulT, Oct 17, 2011.

  1. PaulT

    PaulT AH Fanatic

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    Asiatic Water Buffalo Shot Placement

    I do not have any shot placement diagrams on Asiatic Water buffalo if that is what you were wanting.

    The anatomy of Asiatic buffalo is very similar to Cape buffalo, with the cape buffalo being perhaps only marginally shorter at the withers and perhaps slightly deeper in the brisket.

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    Body weights (from observations only) will run very similar in animals of comparative age class.

    From my limited field experience with cape buffalo I would suggest there are no discernible differences in thickness of skin, muscle and bone density, but then I'm not a biologist, vet or scientist.
    From a hunting perspective I would suggest you can treat the hunting requirements for both animals very similarly.

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    And please don't even get me started on the various merits of which is more dangerous !
    (not that I have a formed opinion either way, if you get trampled or horned by either I'm suggesting it may be hard to tell the difference).
    If you are going to be hunting in an ethical manner with a reputable outfitter, i.e on foot at close range, then best to treat these animals with a high degree of respect.

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    With regards to shot placement;
    my personal preference, for a long time now, has been to place my shot in the very top 1/3 of the shoulder blade (scapula), about 1/4 of the body width down from the top of the withers (in line with the middle of the leg on a relaxed animal) on a side on shot.

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    When you become proficient in knowing where this spot is you will find any caliber from .375 and up, with a good quality bullet will anchor the animal to the spot (and almost always require a finisher).

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    Another successful shot placement on a side-on animal is the "bowler" joint where the shoulder joins the leg bone.
    About 1/3 of the brisket depth up from brisket line, square in the middle-line of the leg.

    On a side-on animal try NOT to place behind any portion of bone-line of the shoulder. Lung shot buffalo will no doubt eventually die but can run a long, long way before they do.

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    (depending on where you are hunting I cannot over emphasize the importance of breaking the means for locomotion. You will be hunting the Tropics of Australia where the Wet season dumps substantial amounts of rainfall each year thereby inundating all areas of flat ground. Then comes the dry season (the hunting season) where the ground is baked hard as concrete as waters dry up and the dirt shrinks and bakes. Tracking,without a copious and constant blood-trail in many areas is a VERY difficult prospect.
    (In regions of wilderness a wounded bull is a very real prospect of becoming a lost bull.)

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    If you have a slightly quartering away shot, then in that case you will be successful by placing the shot on the back-line edge of the near side shoulder in order to break the offside.

    Generally speaking, we discourage our hunters from taking any full frontal shots.
    If you do have to, and are confident in your rifle and bullets and/or have a good understanding of buffalo anatomy you will find a "hollow" in the chest as the buffalo is looking at you where the neck joins the chest.
    If the buffalo is in a relaxed position, just looking, then place your bullet on, or only slightly (2 - 3 ") above, this "hollow"(and be prepared to follow-up instantly as he turns side-on to flee).

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    If the buffalo has sensed your presence, or has seen you, Asiatics have a habit of extending their neck and head to test air currents, lick their nose and try and gain scent to identify the threat (eyesight is not brilliant).
    If you have a bull looking at you in this position my first suggestion would be to wait for a better shot, wait until he has relaxed or has turned to a different position. If you simply HAVE TO take a shot in this position then aim 4 - 5 " below the chin, square on, and again be prepared to follow up immediately.

    I have seen wounds on bulls with the .375 where the entry (no exit) has completely sealed-up after impact restricting any flow of blood from the wound.
    Premium grade projectiles that are tough enough to stand impact at close range, penetrate the skin, break BOTH shoulders AND exit (providing an adequate blood trail) are HIGHLY recommended.

    I hope this has been of some help to you, if you would like to discuss it all in more detail feel free to contact me personally via e-mail; ssahuntinfo@optusnet.com.au

    Good hunting,
    Paul


    Paul Truccolo
    Southern Safaris Australia
    ssahuntinfo@optusnet.com.au
    www.southernsafaris.com.au

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