Experiences With Shot Placement

sgt_zim

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I have never noticed, but was thinking about double-lung shots a few minutes ago and was curious if anyone else had ever noticed or thought about how quickly animals expire on double lung shots which miss the heart.

I'm talking about the difference between a high lung shot and a low lung shot. With a high lung shot, the lungs should fill up with blood fairly quickly and cause the animal to lose capacity for gas exchange, as opposed to a low lung shot where the animal will need to exsanguinate because other than hemorrhaging, there is no impairment to respiration.

I'm not advocating high lung shots, just curious if anyone has ever noticed a difference.
 
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K-man

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Just double lunged a Tahr three days ago. He only fell backwards a step. then rolled a few feet. He then twitched for about 5 seconds but never got up. Shot was mid lungs, with a .300 win mag and 165 grn. barnes from 150 yards. Also shot a fallow (young spike) for meat, basically same result same gun same distance. Not sure if that is what you were asking for, but my experience
 

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I have never failed to recover an animal on any continent within 1oo meters (usually much closer) when shot through both lungs - high or low / forward or back - with a bow or a rifle. I have searched for hours for animals that were supposedly shot through the lungs, only to find a single lung was actually hit - or more often than not, the animal was actually liver or gut shot. Double lung is a devastating shot to any game animal.

I would note it can be a little trickier on African antelope than American deer where the structure puts the lungs a bit farther forward and lower in the body than the typical North American animal.
 

sgt_zim

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Just double lunged a Tahr three days ago. He only fell backwards a step. then rolled a few feet. He then twitched for about 5 seconds but never got up. Shot was mid lungs, with a .300 win mag and 165 grn. barnes from 150 yards. Also shot a fallow (young spike) for meat, basically same result same gun same distance. Not sure if that is what you were asking for, but my experience

Just curious if anyone has ever noticed a difference is all.
 

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I have seen a deer bolt for 500 yards with its heart blown to bits. I've also seen them go two steps and done. No real pattern from my stats.

As @Redleg noted, I have had everything from Moose, Elk, Deer, Sheep - Eland, Kudu, Hartebeest, Wildebeest, etc, go down within 100 yards with both lungs gone. The only animal that went further was a Giraffe (Two through both lungs).
I have always shot higher (with a rifle) in the lungs to ensure no meat was ever spoiled.
It was only in Africa where I started dropping shots into the top of the heart.
Shots ranging from 30 to 500 yards distance did not change the result.

I think the animals level of awareness of a threat made a huge difference in the distance covered after the shot.
 

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I prefer double lung shots. Miss a rib and massive hydrostatic shock. Hit a rib and fragment grenade the lungs. This is with bonded or cup and core bullets on deer. Crossbow, same aim point.
 

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Dittos on the effectiveness of a double lung shot. I think it was Jack O Conner (sp) that said "if you let the air out of both sides the animal is going down, I don't care how big it is."
 

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Shot a cape buffalo last week at 30 yds broadside slightly quartering. Shot on the front of the front leg a third of the way up with .375 H&H Barnes 300g TSX. Went 25 yds. Hit both both lungs just above the heart. Very effective. Low lung shot appeared to work well in this case but it may have been the veins/arteries from the heart that dropped it quickly. Not conclusive on high vs low lung shot... Bullet ended up under the hide on the off shoulder.

1C8586AA-5F4B-4F52-8F73-C814597EA00F.jpeg
 
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Mike Van Horn

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Most of the double lung hits l have had were with a bow.
Hit high a longer track job over 200 yards with very little blood, most is inside the animal
Hit low, short tracking job less than 100 yards with a good trail.
Favorite shot, hit behind the shoulder exit in front of off side shoulder and watch it fall in site of your bow stand
 

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I have never noticed, but was thinking about double-lung shots a few minutes ago and was curious if anyone else had ever noticed or thought about how quickly animals expire on double lung shots which miss the heart.

I'm talking about the difference between a high lung shot and a low lung shot. With a high lung shot, the lungs should fill up with blood fairly quickly and cause the animal to lose capacity for gas exchange, as opposed to a low lung shot where the animal will need to exsanguinate because other than hemorrhaging, there is no impairment to respiration.

I'm not advocating high lung shots, just curious if anyone has ever noticed a difference.

Interesting topic. Like others I have seen mixed results. One thing is for sure every animal that. Have double lunged and hit the heart have expired quickly!
 

Tra3

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Last fall i shot a cow elk broadside at 200 yards with a berger 180 grain VLD out of my 7 mag. I was aiming for a high lung shot as it was a meat hunt. After the shot, the cow didn’t react much, so i shot again. She walked forward 10 steps then stopped, so, fearing I had missed, I shot a 3rd time. She then turned and I could see breath vapor exiting the hole in her side, so I waited 1 minute and she got wobbly and toppled over. Upon skinning I found all 3 bullet entrance holes in a 3” triangle. They were passthroughs. I didn’t damage any meat, but I won’t take that same shot on a Bull elk.
 

BigSteve57

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I've had numerous double lung shots on whitetail deer here in the USA. All died quickly with one exception that I can recall. That shot was at 90 degrees to the animal and at the very top of the lungs just under the spine. I THINK it went through both lungs as I saw air bubbles but I'm not 100% sure. Anyway it ran about 100 yds.
 

Longwalker

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I have a theory that it doesn't matter, here's why. A high double lung shot acts as sgt_zim has stated, quick fill up of blood in the lungs and lack of lung function. But a shot lower down, missing the heart is very likely to cut more major blood vessels, and while not quite "as opposed to a low lung shot where the animal will need to exsanguinate because other than hemorrhaging, there is no impairment to respiration." There would be equivalent lack of oxygen to the brain, because the top of the lungs may still work, but there is much less blood to get there and do the necessary gas exchange.
From my journal records of perhaps a hundred animals and many more while hunting with companions, I have not noticed any practical difference in high vs low double lung shots while comparing flight distance after the shot.
 

sgt_zim

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I hadn't considered a difference in vascularity. There are big arteries and veins near the heart/lung junction - pulmonary artery and vein, vena cava, and aorta.
 

Longwalker

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Newboomer

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I shot my buf frontal mid chest with a Barnes 350 g TSX. He went about 70 yards and we found him dead. Not much blood but the skinners said he pretty much bled out inside. Heart and lungs were all torn up. My eland was a frontal at about 80 yards, same bullet. Creased his lower jaw and into his chest. Tracker followed and said he was blowing blood like a firehose. He went about half a mile before laying down and that was a good lung shot.
 

sgt_zim

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I shot my buf frontal mid chest with a Barnes 350 g TSX. He went about 70 yards and we found him dead. Not much blood but the skinners said he pretty much bled out inside. Heart and lungs were all torn up. My eland was a frontal at about 80 yards, same bullet. Creased his lower jaw and into his chest. Tracker followed and said he was blowing blood like a firehose. He went about half a mile before laying down and that was a good lung shot.

A typical 200# man has about 5L of blood in his body. I figure a 800-900KG eland or cape buffalo probably has 10X that volume, give or take a little. Takes a lot of blood to get the dipstick down to the "fill" line. ;)
 

IvW

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For African game frontal shots have to be placed precisely to be effective, the longer the frontal shot the bigger the chance of a bad shot.

The best spot to aim on a side on shot is on the front leg half way up the depth of the body as opposed to 1/3 up. This will give you the best margin of error. If you break one or both shoulders that is even better.

A shot through the heart or both lungs will be fatal using the right bullet.

A buffalo shot with a conventional(jacketed) round nosed solid shot through one or even two lungs can go for a very long way. We tracked one once for two days that was shot high through both lungs and too fat back, he was still full of fight when we finished him.

I have found that a high hart double lung shot is the fastest killer apart from one that shatters the neck vertebrae or the brain. With high hart shot I mean over the hart through all the plumbing there and then through both lungs.

I have also seen hart shot animals drop to the spot and have read that the explanation for this is that if the ventricle that pumps the blood is full and a soft nose bullet hits it it basically produces a massive fatal stroke...

I always go for the high hart double lung shot if I can, on the shoulder.

Behind the shoulder is too risky.

Trophy hunting not meat hunting.
 

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