Hunting Ethics

OP
aidan_downey

aidan_downey

Member
Joined
Mar 2, 2020
Messages
64
Location
Wyoming
So did you trail blood all the way to the private?? I'd focus more on things you can control, rather than the other hunters.

The property boundary rules out west are for sure a bummer, but I can see why they are in place.

It seems from anecdotal evidence, most people are never able to gain access to pursue their wounded animal??
I did follow the blood to private and unfortunately it dried up pretty fast. As Laramie stated in analyzing the shot and knowing how tough elk are I'm not ruling out hat he will die. But yes after that rodeo I tracked him to the edge of private.
 
OP
aidan_downey

aidan_downey

Member
Joined
Mar 2, 2020
Messages
64
Location
Wyoming
To make sure I'm following- you waited about 45 minutes before the two guys came in. Assuming it took at least 15 minutes for the two guys to move in on the elk before getting their shot, the bull you hit had been hit for at least an hour. The injured bull stayed with his cows to follow them uphill. From my experience, it is unlikely that bull was mortally wounded. If he was, he would have likely broken off from the cows and not headed uphill.

Perspective is often not reality. Here is a bull feeding that I'm 99% confident the hunter thought he had killed. Buddies had him on camera acting completely normal.
View attachment 330696

I'm not saying this is exactly what happened in your situation, but it sounds at minimum possible.

As to the ethics, it's hard to form an opinion without being there and/or hearing both sides. My guess is you told the guys you had been waiting 45 minutes and they figured your bull is either dead or not going to die based on the shot description. As to what size of animal a person should be hunting, that is up to each guy to decide. They have every right to pursue a raghorn if they so choose. Guessing from the description, they were likely new elk hunters and would have been pretty excited to get him.

Last question - Did you contact an LEO or landowner in an attempt to continue following the bull you hit?
Talk to a biologist that night and he said I knowing the landowner it is extremely unlikely that I will gain access. But I'm searching for a number now anyway. I would agree that I am not certain. That bull will die. I'm not certain he won't. What I am certain of is that situation would have been much different if people had courtesy for others and treated them the way they would like to be treated in that situation. Not trying have a sob story for myslef, at the end of the day I didn't make the best shot I could, just want to know if the courtesy and expect to have is unreasonable.
 

Ucsdryder

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 24, 2015
Messages
2,099
Zero chance I would continue on in that situation. But based off some of the things I’ve seen “hunters” do I’m not surprised. Honesty when I started reading this I assumed someone stole your dead elk. Think about the hunting society we live in that someone would think that’s even a possibility.
 

Tod osier

Senior Member
Joined
Sep 11, 2015
Messages
858
Dick move on their part regardless of the lethality of your shot. I would make the case that given that they shot was not perfect that it was even worse of them to move in.
 

Laramie

Senior Member
Joined
Apr 17, 2020
Messages
1,340
Talk to a biologist that night and he said I knowing the landowner it is extremely unlikely that I will gain access. But I'm searching for a number now anyway. I would agree that I am not certain. That bull will die. I'm not certain he won't. What I am certain of is that situation would have been much different if people had courtesy for others and treated them the way they would like to be treated in that situation. Not trying have a sob story for myslef, at the end of the day I didn't make the best shot I could, just want to know if the courtesy and expect to have is unreasonable.
A game warden is your best option. Most of them have relationships with landowners and they are motivated to help. A biologist doesn't have the same pull.
 
OP
aidan_downey

aidan_downey

Member
Joined
Mar 2, 2020
Messages
64
Location
Wyoming
Zero chance I would continue on in that situation. But based off some of the things I’ve seen “hunters” do I’m not surprised. Honesty when I started reading this I assumed someone stole your dead elk. Think about the hunting society we live in that someone would think that’s even a possibility.
Yeah I have really broken down our "hunting community" just from a societal perspective and where we are at today... People seem more greedy and self involved than ever before, world is going crazy....
 

GSPHUNTER

Senior Member
Joined
Jun 30, 2020
Messages
712
I used a guide in NM who told me he has butchered three elk with bullets still in them and showed no sign of having ever been shot before. He figured all were shot at lease a year before.
 

Laramie

Senior Member
Joined
Apr 17, 2020
Messages
1,340
@Laramie I've seen a gutshot deer breed a doe and I'm certain that buck died. Sure there are outliers, but odds are both your animal and my animal would die from a condition caused by the arrows.
Gutshot deer and a shoulder shot elk are vastly different. The deer will most certainly die, just a matter of time. I have harvested elk with broadheads buried in the should bone on 2 different occasions. The wounds were 1+ years old and were not visible until processing. I have also found bullets against an elks shoulder. There was one in my bull from this past season. It was also at least a one year old wound.
 

Dos Perros

Senior Member
Joined
Jul 30, 2015
Messages
2,691
Location
Lenexa, KS
Gutshot deer and a shoulder shot elk are vastly different. The deer will most certainly die, just a matter of time. I have harvested elk with broadheads buried in the should bone on 2 different occasions. The wounds were 1+ years old and were not visible until processing. I have also found bullets against an elks shoulder. There was one in my bull from this past season. It was also at least a one year old wound.

Tough to tell on your pic I guess, but I'd have guessed that arrow was off the bone, into the lung area. I definitely would have thought I killed that bull if that's where I hit him and with that much penetration, which I guess proves your point. :) Odds are that's a dead bull, IMO.
 

Xprmntl

Junior Member
Joined
Nov 11, 2014
Messages
17
Location
Idaho
I did go down when they went down to try and track where I last saw my bull and to see if I could get another shot.
I'm of the opinion one should make every attempt to keep a wounded animal in sight so as not to lose the ability to track the animal and understand its health trajectory. Waiting in place without visual on a wounded animal is a real gamble.
 
OP
aidan_downey

aidan_downey

Member
Joined
Mar 2, 2020
Messages
64
Location
Wyoming
I'm of the opinion one should make every attempt to keep a wounded animal in sight so as not to lose the ability to track the animal and understand its health trajectory. Waiting in place without visual on a wounded animal is a real gamble.
I would agree if the situation allows. But given the wind and the terrain that was simply not an option, without blowing him out myself. And with 30 alert cow eyes to fool that would have been a tall order.
 

Laramie

Senior Member
Joined
Apr 17, 2020
Messages
1,340
Tough to tell on your pic I guess, but I'd have guessed that arrow was off the bone, into the lung area. I definitely would have thought I killed that bull if that's where I hit him and with that much penetration, which I guess proves your point. :) Odds are that's a dead bull, IMO.
We though so as well but had him on camera several times throughout archery grazing in the wallow area, interacting with elk, etc. He lived and acted fairly normal for at least 2.5 weeks.
 

Laramie

Senior Member
Joined
Apr 17, 2020
Messages
1,340
I'm of the opinion one should make every attempt to keep a wounded animal in sight so as not to lose the ability to track the animal and understand its health trajectory. Waiting in place without visual on a wounded animal is a real gamble.
If that wounded animal sees or hears something following it, it will travel exponentially further. You absolutely do not do that with an elk. Even with a great shot, adrenalin can carry them quite a ways. They may only be alive for 10-20 seconds but an elk can cover 300 yards in 20 seconds at top speed if it thinks something is chasing it.
 

roadrunner

Senior Member
Joined
May 10, 2015
Messages
801
Location
Timberline
One persons ethics are not the same as another persons. At the end of the day, all you can do is say you did what you thought was right for you.

Life is full of people doing stupid things to others, whether it is hunting or work related...
 

Xprmntl

Junior Member
Joined
Nov 11, 2014
Messages
17
Location
Idaho
If that wounded animal sees or hears something following it, it will travel exponentially further. You absolutely do not do that with an elk. Even with a great shot, adrenalin can carry them quite a ways. They may only be alive for 10-20 seconds but an elk can cover 300 yards in 20 seconds at top speed if it thinks something is chasing it.
Exponentially further? What exponent are we talking here? Certainly an elk can travel 30+mph. I'm talking about stalking them after they've gone out of sight, as this animal was.
 

bsnedeker

Senior Member
Joined
May 17, 2018
Messages
1,760
Location
MT
Exponentially further? What exponent are we talking here? Certainly an elk can travel 30+mph. I'm talking about stalking them after they've gone out of sight, as this animal was.
You don't spook them and they go about 100-150 yards, you spook them and they go 1000-2000 yards or more. That kind of exponentially.
 

Scooter90254

Senior Member
Joined
May 7, 2018
Messages
210
Location
Michigan
Another factor that you’re not considering is that a classic lie to other hunters is to tell them you shot the herd bull.

I’ve seen it happen multiple times. When someone tells me they shot a bull in a high pressure area I’m very resistant until I see proof.
 
OP
aidan_downey

aidan_downey

Member
Joined
Mar 2, 2020
Messages
64
Location
Wyoming
Another factor that you’re not considering is that a classic lie to other hunters is to tell them you shot the herd bull.

I’ve seen it happen multiple times. When someone tells me they shot a bull in a high pressure area I’m very resistant until I see proof.
That may be, if that was the case I would have been happy to show them the missing arrow from my quiver and the blood where he was shot. Understand the skepticism but that doesn't excuse that kind of behavior I think.
 

Kevin Dill

Senior Member
Joined
Aug 26, 2014
Messages
2,756
I only expect ethics from myself and maybe those I know quite well. Ethics are something you learn, develop and believe in as time passes. You simply can't expect people to show something (ethics) they have never learned or known. It's not automatic for hunters to understand how to act in situations like the one described by the OP. In fact, I would hazard a guess that a majority of hunters are about success WAY more than ethical behaviors. Ethics are fine when convenient, but often set aside when they get in the way of achieving a kill.
 
Top