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  #21  
Old 10-18-2012, 04:22 PM
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I cannot say that. I have had more “One soht, dropped in its tracks kills with the 307 Winchester and 170-grain bullets than with any other cartridge.
The 356 Winchester with the 200-grain bullets has performed very well for me.
The 375 Winchester with 200-grain Sierra bullets is a good deer killer -- I guess we can say these are “light for the caliber” bullets!
The 243 with 100-grain and lighter bullets, not so much.
I have done better with the 250 Savage and the 25-35AI and 100-grain bullets.
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  #22  
Old 10-18-2012, 04:41 PM
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I think it is true that I have seen a higher percentage of DRT kills from very high speed, frangible bullets than from slower, less frangible bullets when shot into the chest cavity. I have also seen a higher percentage hits that required long, often very difficult tracking jobs (due to no blood trail) and follow up shots from very high speed, frangible bullets than from slower, less frangible bullets.

I dislike long tracking without a good blood trail and the necessity of follow up shots WAY more than I am impressed by a tendency to drop in their tracks. I can also say that "if" I decide I need an animal dropped on the spot, there are shots that can be made with heavier bullets that also have the tendency to drop them on the spot.

I prefer more certainty of a short, easy to track trail to the possibility of no tracking at all, but with the consequent risk of lots of it.

"Dead in its tracks" is far less important to me than "dead from the first shot", even though the animal may run a bit. A good blood trail from an exit wound makes a short run no issue. No blood trail makes those that do run (and it must be remembered that some WILL run, no matter what caliber is used) very hard to follow at times. I avoid those times by using enough gun. There is no such thing as bullet energy "wasted" on the landscape.
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  #23  
Old 10-18-2012, 06:53 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Saskshooter View Post
I think it is true that I have seen a higher percentage of DRT kills from very high speed, frangible bullets than from slower, less frangible bullets when shot into the chest cavity. I have also seen a higher percentage hits that required long, often very difficult tracking jobs (due to no blood trail) and follow up shots from very high speed, frangible bullets than from slower, less frangible bullets.

I dislike long tracking without a good blood trail and the necessity of follow up shots WAY more than I am impressed by a tendency to drop in their tracks. I can also say that "if" I decide I need an animal dropped on the spot, there are shots that can be made with heavier bullets that also have the tendency to drop them on the spot.

I prefer more certainty of a short, easy to track trail to the possibility of no tracking at all, but with the consequent risk of lots of it.

"Dead in its tracks" is far less important to me than "dead from the first shot", even though the animal may run a bit. A good blood trail from an exit wound makes a short run no issue. No blood trail makes those that do run (and it must be remembered that some WILL run, no matter what caliber is used) very hard to follow at times. I avoid those times by using enough gun. There is no such thing as bullet energy "wasted" on the landscape.

This mirrors my thinking exactly.
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  #24  
Old 10-18-2012, 08:15 PM
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You have to know your shot, and what is required of the bullet you are using to successfully execute it. If you take rear quartering shots that have to go through the paunch to reach vitals, then you need a stout bullet that will give excellent penetration. The same goes for the high shoulder shot, through both shoulders and maybe even the spine. Quick expanding bullets may fail on this shot, but are perfect for behind the shoulder shots that will hit nothing bigger than a rib bone.

Know your rifle, know your bullet, know your trajectory, know your quarry's anatomy, wait for the right shot, and you will have no problems. Cor-Lokts and Power Points have been killing deer for many decades, but just don't expect them to do something they are not designed to do.
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  #25  
Old 10-18-2012, 08:45 PM
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Alot depends on the animals state of mind,if the adrenaline is flowing they can run a ways even with a big round in the right spot.
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  #26  
Old 10-18-2012, 09:26 PM
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The death run...good term. The last elk that I shot did that. And, where it ran...it was a real beastie to get it out of that hole/ravine. Easy to follow, just follow the busted brush.

It have read in books, and seen that gut shot deer will hunch their backs and look sick, before they run off. And also, a deer shot in the heart will jump up and kick their back legs in the air and run like the boogey-man is after them. They will run at least 50, if not 100 yards before they notice that their heart is not there and that it is physically impossible to run w/o a heart. They will then keel over and die.

The last time that I had that happen, I as able to follow chunks of shoulder bone to the deer. She had a hole in the top of her shoulder the size of my fist.

Shortly afterwards, I vowed to stop shooting deer in the heart as I read, in a book, that was what they would do. I then put 2 and 2 together.

This is my theory, and take it for what its worth. That, smaller bullets (like out of a .243, .257, and maybe even .270) have more of what I call bullet-upset than a bigger bullet. The bullet, because it is smaller, is more likely to wobble, yaw and is otherwise more affected by the impact and etc that a bigger bullet. Therefore, it transfers more PROPORTIONAL energy than a bullet twice its weight. Anybody got a thought on that?
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  #27  
Old 10-19-2012, 02:26 AM
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Stinky,

Go back and read post #22. It's one of the best-written, most concise comments on the differences between light/fast and heavy/slow bullets I've ever read. Anything else I might say would only detract from it.
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  #28  
Old 10-19-2012, 10:38 AM
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I like what Post 22 said and given that we all have seen lots of things when shooting a deer I think it is safe to say that they have the ultimate answer. I also think the shooter has a lot more influence on what makes his answer right or wrong or shades there of.

Some shooters are going to pull the trigger if they see an animal that they want to take pretty much no matter how certain the shot is. On another forum about strange reactions to being hit and odd shots taken it is clear that some shoot if they think they might pull the shot off. These shooters are going to have more shots into the shoulder, or long ways through the animal. To my way of thinking these types do need big bullets that hold together no matter what it hits.

I am more to the other extreme in that unless I get a shot into the rib cage at a deer that is at most moving slowly and only then if they are very close it is almost 100 percent certain that the biggest things I will hit is a rib bone. Smaller more frangible bullets are not so much at risk because I am not going to take those shots that have the potential to hit anywhere. I must admit that I am not as patient when it is the first chance at a kill for a new gun. Stupid but I become less patient for the perfect shot in my mind.

However, I never really thought of it the way that post does in that he hates a long track than loves a DRT. I guess my ambition for DRT is because I hate the thought of tracking a deer. I can see where the exit hole is important for a blood trail. I guess I recently moved to a different gun hoping it has a lot of DRT in it but also a certainty that the deer is not going to go far if hit and tracking will be easy. I just got a 300 Win Mag for small PA deer and will be using bullets that are perhaps not as stout as some of the bonded bullets but I think leans more toward weight retention than some of the more fragile bullets.

While I agree with post 22 on a bullet going through I would like for it to have just enough energy to exit out the back side. I do want as much of the bullets energy to be left in the deer. I think if that is of no importance we would all be shooting those solid bullets that are not going to break up no matter what it hits.

I tend to believe that bullet makers are trying to appeal to both sides of the issue with some of the newer bullets that retain most of their weight but expand quickly and open up a good amount. I think that if someone does figure out what kind of bullet would be nearly 100 percent successful at leaving the animal DRT we all would be buying them.

So Sask thanks for your point of view that I never thought of in that way and I think it is a better approach to deciding what bullet and what gun you chose to use.
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  #29  
Old 10-19-2012, 02:20 PM
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The idea of energy being expended inside an animal is a total myth, in my opinion. What I mean is, the only thing that counts is tissue damage, which is a result of the work done by the projectile. Yes, it takes energy to do that work. But it is unrealistic to think that a bullet stopping inside an animal (or just barely passing through) is magically different than a bullet that does the same damage and then travels on.

The energy formula used by ammunition companies heavily favor velocity - it is squared in the equation. To me, it is only useful to compare energy level of one cartridge to another. ;-)

For what it is worth, the highest velocity cartridge I ever shot a deer with was a 7 mag shooting a 150gr bullet. That deer had more bloodshot meat AND ran further than any other deer I've shot, all from a shot that went in behind the left shoulder and broke the right shoulder on the way out.
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  #30  
Old 10-19-2012, 06:28 PM
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The kinectic energy equation (1/2MV^2) dates back to around the 1700's and applies to all objects in motion. Another way of thinking of expending all the energy within, following Raptors lead, is by assuming you are shooting a deer with the same rifle in the same place, twice. The first with a strong bullet at a distance such that the kinectic energy upon impact with the animal is 1000 ft-lbs. The strong bullet doesn't deform as much thus doesn't slow down as much thus doesn't transfer as much energy to the surrounding tissue thereby exiting the animal at a velocity that when the remaining kinectic energy of the bullet on the back side of the animal is 500 ft-lbs. Thus 500 ft-lbs of energy was transfered to the animal to cause damage to tissue. Your next bullet is a little softer, probably ideally designed for contact at a given speed, which happens to be what your rifle is producing, and impacts the deer at the exact same spot with the same contact energy (1000 ft-lbs) but expands well, maybe even comes apart a little, and thus slows down so it barely penetrates the hide and falls to the ground, zero velocity on the back side of the deer resulting in 1000 ft-lbs of energy transfered to the deer.
It should be apparent that bullet choice if very important and very specific for each cartridge given the range of its intended use and the quarry it is pursuing.
An object need not penetrate a body to inflict lethal damage due to kinectic energy. A good example is how people can die of internal injuries in a car accident when their body was travelling at 35 mph and came to an abrupt stop....Kinectic energy absorbed within.
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  #31  
Old 10-19-2012, 06:36 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cj307 View Post
An object need not penetrate a body to inflict lethal damage due to kinectic energy.
This is true, but in order to leave a solid blood trail, should that "body" R U N N O F T...I like an exit wound!

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Accuracy is the most important trait of any hunting bullet.
Penetration, through and through, is essential when hunting big game animals, in my opinion.
Expansion, of smaller caliber bullets, and such that it does not prohibit complete penetration, is highly desirable.
Energy, sufficient that bullets expand and penetrate. I could care less how much is transferred to the animal or exits the far side.

When a bullet meets all four of those criterion, in that order, it is doing what it's supposed to do.
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  #32  
Old 10-20-2012, 07:50 AM
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Back in the early 70s when I was still in the service I was given a Rem. Mod 788 in 22-250. At the time it was the only center fire rifle I owned. I shot 5 deer with it. All were behind-the-shoulder shots and every one died literally in it's tracks. I was using Speer 55gr SP bullets, H380 powder and an old Lee Loader. Distances of animals shot grows in the mind sometimes but I'd say the furthest was 185 - 200 yards.
After a while I decided I needed a bigger caliber so I bought a '98 Mauser rebarreled to 6mmRem. I loaded 100gr Speer SP bullets, again with H380. With behind - the - shoulder shots the deer would typically run a little ways, maybe 30 yards or so, and then fall over dead. I remember one muley I shot in New Mexico at about 150 yards, using the 6mm, and it was a raking shot - I was aiming for the opposite shoulder and I hit it. The bullet sailed through the lungs and busted the off shoulder, lodging in the skin. The deer hobbled off a ways and fell into an arroyo, dead. That 6mm was my only rifle for a long time.
Fast forward to now. I shoot a single shot Haenel Lawrence '98 Mauser chambered for 30-40AI. Last year I shot a white tail spike at about 65 yards with an older 150gr cup and core Speer SP over H380 (love that powder!) and at the shot the deer dissapeared. I walked over and he was dead. The bullet broke a rib, angled almost straight up and broke the spine from inside, ruining the off-side backstrap. I found the bullet lodged under the skin next to the broken spine and all it was was an expanded copper jacket. I have no idea where the lead core went.
This year I am using 180gr Hornady Interlocks (guess what powder I'm using!) because I'm hoping for less meat damage.
Over the years I've had to track a few deer. One was shot at about 50 yards with a 30-30 170gr factory load right behind the shoulder. He took a hop into the woods and it took me two hours to find him. He had gone about 1/2 mile and was piled up in the middle of a logging road. Another that comes to mind was shot at about 50 yards with a CVA .45 cal flintlock, again behind the shoulder. He ran down hill and crossed the creek, topped the rise beyond it and was alive, barely, lying behind a large yellow pine, so I shot him again in the neck, killing him instantly.
I agree, you never know how an animal will react when hit. As a medic in Viet Nam I can say the same thing about humans. I will say I was mighty impressed with that old 22-250, but as I said, they were all broadside boiler room shots. I don't know the answers about high velocity small bullets vs slower big bullets. All I know is that if you hit an animal in the heart/lung area with just about any bullet it will die. How soon is up to the animal.
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  #33  
Old 10-20-2012, 11:39 AM
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A friend of mine shoots all of his deer with the 22-350 and has no complaint. He started out using the 55-grain bullets but over time has moved to the 62-grain bullets.
My father is a big 223 fan. I have seen him shoot a full bodied mature buck at 110 yards (out by my well house so I know the distance) and the buck took three stiff legged hops before rolling over - 55-grain Sierra varmint bullet in the chest right above the heart.
I stood beside him while he shot another full bodied white tail right behind the front leg with the same bullet and detached the heart from the arteries. The deer whirled and ran 110 yards at the speed of light. He ran out of air, stopped next to a cedar bush, rang his tail and fell over.

The article, So, You Missed was written by Bob Haggel for the December 1946 issue of the American Rifleman. This is the drawing I was thinking of when I mentioned the article. I have heard these words many times.

The other cartoon is just for fun.
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  #34  
Old 10-22-2012, 11:10 AM
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This whole thread is very interesting and best of all it consists of everyone telling their own experiences and belief on the matter. I have had times where I have been chastised because my experience was not extensive enough so they said it was immaterial. Perhaps that is so but I think any experience provides some value. On Deer the bulk of my experience with 243 and 22-250 is that a shot to the rib cage is enough to put a deer down right there. Perhaps 20 or 30 deer all reacting the same way is surely going to affect the way I think.

Now my experience is on Deer where I think you have more of a margin of error because they are tough but it is rare that you experience reactions like some I have read on Elk or really big game. On deer even my 243 with what ever Remington loaded which was probably some soft pointed bullet, the bullet did not stay inside the deer. I have never recovered even a piece of a bullet in any deer I shot. I do not butcher my deer and certainly do not spend much time looking for one but if it were up against the rib cage I would have loved to recover it.

With luck perhaps I will have some experiences to relate about deer hit with a 300 win mag in a month or so. As I write this and the other posts I still wonder why I have not used either the 243 or the 22-250 on deer in a good while. Well I went back to the 243 for one hunt maybe 5 years ago and it did its magic again but the gun was a pump and not a gun I wanted to carry and when I decided to buy another gun well bigger is better. I have no doubt that my bullet will exit the deer if I shoot one this year, I only hope that my trailing skills are not put to the test.
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  #35  
Old 10-24-2012, 04:01 AM
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Maybe with the low cost and abundant use of video cameras, we'll start to see videos of actual bullet performance of deer in the field.
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  #36  
Old 10-24-2012, 05:04 AM
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I hope that is correct PatrickB but the people on here who have shot a lot of animals or were guides and saw lots of animals shot have the strongest conviction that it is impossible to pick a bullet or caliber or speed that will insure a DRT shot. I guess if you hit the skull dead center that would be the case but I think that most hunters shoot for the area of the shoulder. Some shoot at the shoulder and some shoot for the ribs just behind the shoulder.

From my younger days we used paper plates to make sure we were accurate enough to hit a spot where the deer was going to die. So I assume a shot inside of that kind of area in heart lung area. As I posted earlier I have had pretty consistent DRT results with a 243 but believe others who say that my results are just on those deer and if I shot that many more my results could be very different.

I think I got off track but there are almost 24/7 hunting shows on and especially during hunting season I watch them a lot. Also Youtube had many many videos of animals shot with everything imaginable. What I have seen and many of the shows try to gloss over the kill shot is in agreement with the very experienced guys on this site. Some animals flop over on a less than great hit and others run off with a perfectly placed shot. None of the animals shot in the perfect location lived but many took a while.

I am not sure I will ever give up my search for that magic bullet that puts an end to tracking a deer I shot but the more I read about this and consider all that is said I am beginning to understand the logic of making sure you have a bullet that does enough damage as it passes through the good stuff and have the ability to hit a spot that insures that is the paramount issue. I am also understanding that energy expended in the animal is not really a direct relationship to how much damage is done to the animal.

I think what is a positive thing is that those who are just entering the sport now have way more access to information so that in the future I think things will be understood to levels that are not even imagined today. I think back to some of the things I considered to be facts a long time ago and now realize that they were just tales based on very little.
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  #37  
Old 10-24-2012, 05:29 AM
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You pretty much touched on what I was meaning with my post. If hunters start posting video evidence of the shots they're taking and giving the info on the bullet and caliber, then we can start collecting the info to support or refute current thoughts.

For example, we know that some prefer to shoot a deer in the shoulder and some just behind the shoulder. You could start a thread about that on any hunting forum and you'll get pages advocating that one way is better than the other. But if someone compiled a library of videos to provide the evidence, we might find that when shooting smaller than a .30 caliber bullet, a shoulder shot is idea, but when .30 or above, behind the shoulder is idea. Or we might find that it comes down to bullet weight. Or we might find that its purely personal preference and that with all modern rounds, it makes no difference.

But right now we're going off of people's opinions who because their grandpappy taught them one way, or they heard that one way is better and it works for them, tend to stick with that and don't try something different to see if its better.
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  #38  
Old 10-24-2012, 10:20 AM
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Originally Posted by PatrickB View Post

But right now we're going off of people's opinions who because their grandpappy taught them one way, or they heard that one way is better and it works for them, tend to stick with that and don't try something different to see if its better.
In Internet jargon, we have the abbreviations, "IMHO" and "IME". An opinion is just that, and as such is questionable as to how accurate it may be. However, when enough folks relate their experience on a given topic, like terminal performance, distinct patterns emerge.

I like your idea of many high-speed digital videos being examined to better understand how and why some bullets kill immediately and others result in having to track your game to where it died. The thing is, when you get enough guys together that have killed 20, 30, 50, 100 big game animals...you no longer need "video" proof of what can sometimes happen. There are simply too many corroborating data to dispute the reality...some animals flop like an NBA All-Star and others R U N N O F T when by all rights, they should have died right there!

I'm quite confident in stating that this is a riddle that will never be solved, primarily because some animals just have a tenacity you cannot quantify or dismiss. With anything other than a direct hit to the CNS, some animals will lead you a merry chase. For competent hunters who have learned how to blood trail wounded game, this is really not much of a concern...folks have been doing it for centuries and it's just not that difficult, if the shot was well-placed to begin with.
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  #39  
Old 10-25-2012, 05:32 AM
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Broom_jm I tend to agree with you although it would be very interesting to see statistics on different hits and the results. I would think you would need a large sample to come up with something meaningful and I would guess that some shots and calibers would have a greater than 50/50 chance of DRT.

I have shot perhaps 20 deer with a 243 and all were DRT well one took 2 steps. I have read many posts about the 243 where they have had similar experiences. All my shots were in the rib cage as were most of the posts I read. I would not think the result would be similar with a shoulder shot or and end to end shot.

I would love to see bullet manufactures have a registry on line to accumulate data on their bullets. If you had 10's of thousands reports you might or might not see some kind of trend. I do not think 100 percent results would ever be the case except for direct hits to the CNS as you said. A bullet through the brain is a DRT shot but one I have never thought of taking nor do I think I will ever take. Missed a chance at a buck early in my hunting career because all I could see was the head looking at me through a Y in a tree. It turned and walked straight away with that tree between me and him.

Anyway that is my fantasy thought but as technology advances I think that more and more shots will be documented as I see those POV cams can be had for as low as $50. I am sure that the younger generation will soon be sporting cams on the guns just like we have scopes on most deer rifles which at one time was not the case even in my lifetime.

I will disagree with you a bit about tracking. Some good shots do not leave any sign of blood for a good while and if they are traveling with other deer that spread out following your deer can be very difficult. I hit a deer with a muzzeloader twice in the chest and never found a drop of blood. (Round Ball with a flint lock) got the deer with luck but never used that gun for hunting again.

This year I was out recently and thought I saw a sign that a deer had been hit and had passed by the spot I was on. It was raining and as it turned out the leaf had splotches of red on it that looked like dropped blood. I had to rub it with my hand to determine it was the leaf and not blood. As I walked on I saw many leafs that looked just like the one that fooled me. So glad that I was not trying to track a deer.

I think if tracking was a pretty simple matter then DRT would not really be that big of a deal. I hunt in PA woods where it often takes some effort to even find the spot where you hit the deer if it is a ways off. The deer I got with a 7mm Rem mag all ran off and needed tracking which I was able to do in all but one instance so I am not saying that you are more likely to lose a deer that needs to be tracked but in most of my experiences it was not what I would call easy.

However, your point is valid and nothing that you can legally shoot at deer is going to result in a DRT shot every time. I do think that it would be useful to have a data based analysis of shot results. Maybe and I am saying maybe there is a bullet or bullets that do have a high probability of DRT shots. If the odds at a casino moved in the players direction even a small amount some of us might be interested in visiting a casino and giving it a shot. If one bullet increased my odds that I would not have to track a deer I might be interested in using it.
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  #40  
Old 10-25-2012, 07:55 AM
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This is a good idea, I wonder if any of the bullet manufacturers would be interested in it.

“I would love to see bullet manufactures have a registry on line to accumulate data on their bullets.”

Below matches my experience. I prefer a bullet exit wound as ther will be a blood splash where the anumal was hit. We KNOW we have a wounded animal. Most animals will not leak much blood for 20 to 30 yards and even then it generally takes more distance for easily seen, larger splashes of blood, to leave a clear trail. There are exceptions but I am confident in saying “even with an exit wound, it is can be very difficult to follow up wounded deer.

“I will disagree with you a bit about tracking. Some good shots do not leave any sign of blood for a good while and if they are traveling with other deer that spread out following your deer can be very difficult. I hit a deer with a muzzeloader twice in the chest and never found a drop of blood.”

Francis Sell and Elmer Keith wrote about matching bullet construction to anticipated animal size and impact velocity. Both also stated it was not an easy task.

“Maybe and I am saying maybe there is a bullet or bullets that do have a high probability of DRT shots.”
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