Deer hunting is an outdoor sport which has been in existence for thousands of years.we are covering here the best deer hunting rifle for every type of hunting, There are several deer species in the world which most hunters prefer. The most hunted deer in New Zealand are the red deer, sambar, fallow, sika, whitetail and rusa while in Alaska and Canada, the reindeer is the most hunted species.
State governments regulate the hunting games and seasons. The season’s length is based on the deer population, and health status and different states have varying periods, for example, in Kentucky, hunting occurs between September and February. Some government agencies limit the number of hunters by creating specified hunting time frames. One is allowed to use only certain weapons.
These may include crossbows, short guns and muzzleloaders. For instance, if it is during the bows-season, anyone caught using rifles would be prosecuted. However, in most cases, the bow-season overlaps the firearm-seasons.
Hunters are permitted to use bows in firearm seasons. In states such as Kentucky, it is legal for one to hunt antlerless deer during any season but in some parts, one can only hunt antlered deer in certain phases of the deer season. In the UK, it is illegal for one to hunt with bows.
Venison suppliers to restaurants and butcheries are required to have a Lantra game meat certificate. The British Association for Shooting and Conservation runs hygiene courses, and the qualification is included in the Level 1 deer hunting certificate. If one intends to supply venison to the public, she is required to possess a clean larder which meets the FSA standards.
They should register their food business with the appropriate local authority. Deer Hunting Games There are several hunting methods which are commonly used in America. They include;
- Stand Hunting
It involves ambushing deer where they will most likely travel to, and it can be done in a ground blind or a tree stand. Ground hunting blinds camouflage the hunter hence masking his movements and blocking his scent from reaching the deer. Tree stands are usually about 20feet high. Climbing tree stands made of wood or metal can also be used.
They are placed near corn, buckwheat, clover, wheat, alfalfa and cotton fields. Hunters plant the crops in the major hunting spots to attract deer. They keep deer in the vicinity and facilitate productive hunting.
In some states, one can place baits near crop stands. They are distinct from food crops, and corn is the most preferred bait. Decoys and scents are also used in attracting deer, especially during their breeding season. Bow hunters heavily rely on scents to attract deer too close shooting ranges.
- Still Hunting
The method involves looking for deer as one walks through woodlands. The hunter stops as they listen to any animal movements. If they hear any rustles the quietly squat and peer through the woods to get a clear view of the moving animal and if it’s a deer, they carefully aim their rifle and shoot it.
- Deer Drive
It consists of flushing deer towards hunters. The hunters usually form a long line and walk through standing crops or bushes approaching another line of hunters as they hope to flush out deer. The second line of hunters could be on the ground or in elevated tree stands.
- Spot and Walk
Deer is located from far using telescopes or binoculars. Hunters then stalk them in close range where they can be quickly shot. This method is commonly used in rolling hills or mountainous terrain which has a large visibility.
- Dog hunting
Dogs chase the deer in this hunting method. A group of hunters hides in blinds or stands while another one-run dogs in certain deer spots to drive them to the stands. It is common among clubs with a long hunting tradition. Since the deer usually run away from dogs, hunters shoot them as they approach a crop stand.
The method prevents deer from spotting a hunter by breaking up his outline. It enables the hunter to approach the deer until he reaches an ideal shooting range. How to Shoot a Deer Each hunter should endeavor to make a quick kill in all hunting expeditions. The following steps can aid in finding a deer and making the most accurate shot.
- Spot the Deer
- Get the right equipment and a legal permit: A seasonal hunting permit costs about $ 80, and it can be acquired from a state’s ministry of wildlife and natural resources. You should wear orange hunting gear to be distinguished from foliage by other hunters. A 243 or 30-06 calibre rifle can be used. The legal draw weight permitted when hunting with bows is 45 pounds. You can have a close shooting range of 50 yards.
- Pick an ideal hunting spot: You can be allowed to hunt in national parks in particular times of the deer hunting season. Land owners can also allow you to hunt on their private property but at an agreed fee.
- Conceal you scent: Deer are highly sensitive to human scent. You can mask your scent using a deodorant or scented soaps for 24hours before your expedition. Alternatively, you can keep your clothing in a Rubbermaid container which has spruce bows. It will make you smell like woodlands.
You should avoid exuding strong scents by not drinking alcohol and eating fatty foods before hunting. Laying baking soda in your hunting gear can mask your scent further.
- Identify deer signs: Wander for a while as you look for an ideal hunting spot and camp there. You can find a frequently used trail that leads to a meadow to have a good shooting range. Deer like congregating near water sources or corn and apple fields.
A 60 yard-wide field would be a suitable spot. If you possess a long range rifle with a sighted-in scope, you can select a large meadow. The most common deer sign is antler rub found on tree stems. Bucks rub themselves against trees as they share scent and mark territories.
- Camouflage yourself: You can use blinds or tree stands. Attract the deer towards your location by using urine, estrus spray, making deer calls and rattling antlers together.
- Make an Accurate Shot
- Practice various shooting positions: You should be comfortable using all of them. A prone position is the best while using tree stands. The most stable and comfortable hunting positions are sitting or crouching. When crouching, you can use your thigh to support your elbow as you aim a rifle while as when in the sitting position, you should cross your legs and point the knee of your empty hand towards the deer.
- Take your time: Hunting is a time-consuming activity that can’t be rushed. Identify a suitable hunting spot and wait for the deer. Deer prefer quiet places, so you should be immobile.
Use your binoculars to survey deer. If you spot one, wait until it gets in the most efficient shooting position. It is important to identify the deer species first before taking a shot to determine whether it is prohibited or not.
- Aim precisely: Align your eye with the rifle’s sight first. There are various spots that you can aim.
The front leg. Shoot 6 inches from the deer’s chest for the shot to penetrate the lungs and heart. However, one shot is not enough to take down a deer, and you will have to track it. -The head. Shoot through the deer’s brain for a quick kill. You need to aim for his eye as it prevents the deer from taxidermizing. -The spine. Then aim for a deer’s jawline. The shot will paralyze him, and it allows you to slit his throat or take a second shot. Once you aim, relax and get prepared to take a shot by switching your rifle’s safety catch. You should not hold the rifle for long as you will start swaying. Carefully, efficiently and swiftly squeeze the trigger just after exhaling.
- Shoot at what is visible: You should be certain that you are shooting a deer as there could be someone else behind him.
- Track the Deer
- Wait for a while: Immediately after a deer is shot, it often runs away. Waiting for several minutes allows it to walk for few minutes, lie down and die promptly. Mark the spot where you shot the deer and the direction that it took off.
- Find a blood trail: Examine signs of blood at the exact point where you shot the deer and pick up a trail. The signs can help you determine your shot’s accuracy. If you notice bile or thin bile on the ground, it indicates that the shot wasn’t fatal and you have to track the deer quickly.
- Follow the blood trail: Although a deer is wounded, he can travel for a long distance. If your shot was fatal, he can’t run for more than 600 meters. You should keenly examine the foliage and the ground surface for blood drops. If they are not clear, little hydrogen peroxide can be sprayed on foliage. It will foam up and hence make the blood visible.
- Confirm that the deer is dead: Once you spot a deer, carefully examine it from afar before approaching it. Check if it is moving or breathing. If the shot penetrated the lungs, foamy blood would appear. It is a good indication that the deer will quickly if it is still alive.
Caution should be taken when approaching a wounded deer. Some hunters slit the throat with a sharp knife to make it bleed profusely. However, this could be dangerous if it has big antlers.
- Properly dress the deer: Field-dress the carcass by breaking it into small portions that can be easily packed and carried back to the camp. You can use a sharp, high-quality hunting knife to skin and cut the deer.
If you are far from the hunting camp, carefully remove the deer’s entrails and avoid puncturing them as you also pull major organs such as the heart from the rib cage. The fore and hind legs can be folded for easy transportation.
10 Best Deer Hunting Rifles
- Ruger Blackhawk Combo Air Rifle
It is an open field hunting rifle that is sold for $100. Pros -The rifle has a 0.177 calibre. -It has a high velocity of 1000ft/sec. -Upon purchasing it, one is given a 1year warranty. -It uses a 4*32 scope. Cons -It is not shipped to Kenya.
- Hatsan 95 Rifle Combo Walnut Stock
It is a combo rifle that is available in different sizes. Clients have given it a high rating. Pros -Customers are given a 1-year warranty. -It can be used to hunt deer of varying sizes. -It uses a mount and a 7*32 scope. Cons -The cost might not be affordable for some hunters.
- Diana RWS 34 Breakbarrel Rifle Trigger
It is an accurate and powerful gun trigger. Pros -It is an efficient hunting weapon. -Clients are given a limited warranty. Cons -The price is high for some customers.
- Benjamin Marauder Synthetic Stock Pellet
It is a 177-caliber rifle that is powered by Crosman PCP. Pros -It is efficient when hunting in rough terrain. -It has a long durability as it is tolerant to harsh weather. -There is an adjustable comb that is raised. Cons -It is expensive.
- Gamo Whisper Silent Cat Rifle
It is a Spanish rifle that is available in .22 or .177 Cal pellet. It has a gas piston that delivers high velocity and power while having low vibration. Pros -The price is affordable. -It has a constant power supply. -The rifle uses a 4*32 scope. -It has a weather-tolerant stock. -The gun is portable due to its light weight. Cons -It can cause injuries if misused.
- Christensen Arms Mesa
It has a stainless steel barrel that has a long durability. Pros -Lightweight -It has a carbon stock. Cons -It is not ideal for mountainous terrain. -Expensive
- Montana Mountain Snow Rifle
It is a detachable rifle that has a steel barrel, an M70 trigger and a 3-position safety. The gun uses a Hydro dipped pattern. Pros -An efficient rough terrain hunting weapon. -It has a long durability. Cons -Unaffordable due to its high cost.
- Remington Model; 700 American Wilderness Rifle
It is a weather tolerant rifle that has a steel barrel and a Grayboe stock. Pros -It has a long durability. -Has a variety that one can choose. -Ideal for hunting in rough terrain. Cons -It has a high price.
- Savage Arms MSR 10 Long Range
It is a long range rifle that has a Magpul Gen3 stock and an AR blaze trigger. Pros -It is ideal for hunting in plains. -Highly efficient in hunting. Cons -It is costly and not affordable to many customers.
- Savage DOA Hunter XP Rifle
The rifle has a detachable magazine; a Bushnell scope and an adjustable trigger. There are several varieties that one can choose. Pros -It has a high accuracy. -The price is affordable. Cons -It can’t be used in mountainous terrain. If one is interested in hunting deer, they should select the best deer hunting rifle. They should consider factors such as the deer species, terrain and hunting season. It is also important for a hunter to be familiar with hunting regulations applied in their state or country. Caution should also be taken during hunting to avoid accidents and injuries.