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Where to Shoot a Bear: Shot Placement for Black Bears

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August 07, 2012
Where to Shoot a Bear: Shot Placement for Black Bears - 9

http://ak.c.ooyala.com/tqNXUwYzo_dgKODf5iDJMtC2VQtRu-uv/Ut_HKthATH4eww8X4xMDoxOjA4MTsiGN

Black bear season here in Alaska, or anywhere for that matter, brings its share of challenges. Don’t let a poorly placed shot be one of them.

When bowhunting bears, shot placement is super critical. They are tougher than nails, and don’t leave much of a blood trail, so putting a quick killing arrow right through the boiler room will help ensure a speedy recovery.

The biggest challenge with bear shot placement is that their vitals and front shoulder structure is significantly different than that of the deer family. The shoulder and leg bones are tougher, and configured differently than ungulates (as shown in the video). It’s pretty easy to pick up on these differences, but very important nonetheless. In many cases, a bow shot in the leg, shoulder, or one lung won’t even kill the bear.

With plenty of practice, and a solid knowledge of your prey’s anatomy, you’ll be one step closer to a successful hunt!

Comments (9)

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from tylerfreel85 wrote 1 year 50 weeks ago

good point huntfishtrap, the broadheads i used on my black bear this year were the grizzly single bevel style. they are absolutely devastating, and I don't believe there is a better penetrating broadhead style on the market when it's sharpened and used like it's supposed to be. even with a 40lb recurve, they would give plenty of penetration on a black bear

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from huntfishtrap wrote 1 year 50 weeks ago

-I would say that nearly as important as proper shot placement would be to use only tough, fixed-blade broadheads and a heavy arrow/draw weight.
-One curiosity question, are all bear's vitals placed the same, or is there variances between black, brown, etc.? -BTW, good luck with the shoulder JM, that sounds nasty.

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from DSMbirddog wrote 1 year 50 weeks ago

Good luck to you JM. I have seen a few good recurves on Craigslist and you might try a want to buy on Craigslist. I still shoot my Bear Grizzly that I bought in the 70's a few times a year.

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from tylerfreel85 wrote 1 year 50 weeks ago

My recurve is a Bear's Paw, made by Neil Jacobsen in Montana. I've shot quite a few and they are the best that i've ever shot! For an intro bow, bear or martin make really nice ones too.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from JM wrote 1 year 50 weeks ago

@DMS,
I do not mind not having any let off. My friend let me shoot his 48# recurve and I got off 8 shots before I had to give my shoulder a break. Plus I want to keep doing it even after my shoulder heals.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from DSMbirddog wrote 1 year 50 weeks ago

JM, a long bow or recurve won't overcome your shoulder issue. No let off with those.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from DSMbirddog wrote 1 year 50 weeks ago

JM, a long bow or recurve won't overcome your shoulder issue. No let off with those.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from DSMbirddog wrote 1 year 50 weeks ago

For this type hunting I think a heavy arrow and broadhead is important. I want penetration not hyper velocity. Your range is a known factor when hunting over bait. If you hit them in the paw or leg I don't care what you are shooting you've got problems. Practice is the key.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from JM wrote 1 year 50 weeks ago

What bow do you shoot/what would you suggest? I wan't to try a recurve/longbow for a few years. Dislocated my shoulder the other day, and it will be awile before I can draw my compound.

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Post a Comment (200 characters or less)

from tylerfreel85 wrote 1 year 50 weeks ago

My recurve is a Bear's Paw, made by Neil Jacobsen in Montana. I've shot quite a few and they are the best that i've ever shot! For an intro bow, bear or martin make really nice ones too.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from JM wrote 1 year 50 weeks ago

What bow do you shoot/what would you suggest? I wan't to try a recurve/longbow for a few years. Dislocated my shoulder the other day, and it will be awile before I can draw my compound.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from DSMbirddog wrote 1 year 50 weeks ago

For this type hunting I think a heavy arrow and broadhead is important. I want penetration not hyper velocity. Your range is a known factor when hunting over bait. If you hit them in the paw or leg I don't care what you are shooting you've got problems. Practice is the key.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from DSMbirddog wrote 1 year 50 weeks ago

JM, a long bow or recurve won't overcome your shoulder issue. No let off with those.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from DSMbirddog wrote 1 year 50 weeks ago

JM, a long bow or recurve won't overcome your shoulder issue. No let off with those.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from JM wrote 1 year 50 weeks ago

@DMS,
I do not mind not having any let off. My friend let me shoot his 48# recurve and I got off 8 shots before I had to give my shoulder a break. Plus I want to keep doing it even after my shoulder heals.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from DSMbirddog wrote 1 year 50 weeks ago

Good luck to you JM. I have seen a few good recurves on Craigslist and you might try a want to buy on Craigslist. I still shoot my Bear Grizzly that I bought in the 70's a few times a year.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from huntfishtrap wrote 1 year 50 weeks ago

-I would say that nearly as important as proper shot placement would be to use only tough, fixed-blade broadheads and a heavy arrow/draw weight.
-One curiosity question, are all bear's vitals placed the same, or is there variances between black, brown, etc.? -BTW, good luck with the shoulder JM, that sounds nasty.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from tylerfreel85 wrote 1 year 50 weeks ago

good point huntfishtrap, the broadheads i used on my black bear this year were the grizzly single bevel style. they are absolutely devastating, and I don't believe there is a better penetrating broadhead style on the market when it's sharpened and used like it's supposed to be. even with a 40lb recurve, they would give plenty of penetration on a black bear

0 Good Comment? | | Report

Post a Comment (200 characters or less)