DeerBlaster blasts

Two NC monster bucks! Fixed or mechanical? New Browning rifle

Today’s Top 5

How ’bout a 17-point 200-lb velvet BEAST!!!

Look at the MASS on that thing! For sure one gorgeous buck, green-scores at just over 159″. Tootie Morris was hunting with her hubs Scottie during NC’s opening archery weekend. From Carolina Sportsman:
> “We had two big 8-point bucks on camera…. We’d seen this non-typical on the cameras also, but rarely during daylight. And the photos did not do this deer justice. It just didn’t look as big on camera as it really was.
> “I drew back and let off 6 or 7 times before I finally had a clear shot. The deer just kept stomping and running other deer off. We thought he was gone for good one time, but luckily he came back.
> “…when it first stepped into the clearing, I was surprised at seeing him. …Scottie was saying ‘shoot that deer’ when he realized how much bigger it was in person than in photos.
> “If we had tracked it the night before, we would have bumped it for sure. Scottie is really smart about those kinds of details. He really knows what he’s doing and I’m blessed to have him.”
Congrats to y’all both! A non-typ with that kinda mass in VELVET is every hunter’s dream, wow.

What’s deadlier: fixed or mechanical?

Ask a bowhunter that question and you’ll probably hear more about the “cons” of the broadhead he doesn’t use than the the one he prefers. Whatever — there’s never been a lot of rational science about the comparative effectiveness of each broadhead style…til now.

Here’s a few highlights of a harvest study on a MD military base, from the QDMA:
>…rock-solid database includes details on over 40,000 hours of bowhunting effort…over a span of 30 hunting seasons.
> …bowhunters who used fixed-blades for the 1989 through 2018 seasons recovered 931 of 1131 hit deer (82.3%).
> Bowhunters who used mechanicals for the 2007 through 2018 seasons recovered 389 of 429 hit deer (90.7%). [Mechanicals weren’t allowed before 2007.]
> Statistical tests indicate it is unlikely mechanicals performed better than fixed-blades due to random chance.

> I do not have data that can explain why the recovery rates with mechanicals were better than the recovery rates with fixed-blades. You can speculate the smaller flight profile of mechanicals promotes better accuracy, or that their larger cutting diameter makes for better/shorter blood trails, or all the above.

Just a couple data points for ya. But still seems like shot placement and good blood-tracking skills are always going to be the most important things….

Another NC brute!!??

Stumbled across this at @midwest_whitetails_1. Points for days? Check. Incredible mass? Roger that. Ri-donkulous brow tines? Absolutely. Assorted kickers, stickers, and trash? Affirmative. Some shedding velvet still intact? Yessir.
If NC keeps dropping deer like this, it’s gonna be the new state to hunt! Congrats to Tory Pegg who shot this knobby, gnarly brute in Guilford County.

Check out Whitey!

Not sure, but we *think* this WI whitetail is actually a piebald, not a true albino. Albinos have pink eyes, noses and hooves. Either way, crazy cool buck. He sticks out now, but if he makes it til it snows, he should be good….
Pic shared by guy named Tanner H on Facebook….

Oldest deer hunter passes on at 105.

> Clyde Roberts of VA hunted for 40 years. That doesn’t sound like much, but he started when he was 65….
> From 100 to 105 years old, Clyde bagged 15 bucks. At 104 years old, Roberts said his enjoyment of the outdoors had not waned over years and that he would continue to go deer hunting as long as he was able. And that’s exactly what he did.
He passed just before VA’s deer season started so guess the good Lord felt the deer needed a break….
He was considered America’s oldest living deer hunter — check out outdoor writer Bill Heavey’s profile of him back in April. Definitely worth a read.


1. DC: US hunters declining significantly.

> …were 11.5 mil hunters in 2016, according to the most recent figures published by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, representing a decline of 2.2 million from 2011.
> In 1991, 28% of U.S. hunters fell in the 25-34 age group, accounting for the largest share of the hunting population. That number declined to 16% in 2016, and there were similar decreases in the 18-24 age group.
> In 1991, 23% of the hunting population were between 45 and 64. That percentage doubled to 46% in 2016.

2. Women are the fastest-growing group of hunters.

> …in 2001 there were 1.8 mil registered female hunters in the US. That number increased to 3.3 mil by 2013. Today, [it’s grown even more].

3. FL: New hunting opportunities for newbies and…antis??

Could this really work?
> Learn to hunt in FL with this unique program created by a fifth-generation Floridian who’s a full-time hunting guide. The program is open to those interested in “getting into hunting, or [are] anti-hunting but open to a conversation with a hunter.”

4. MS: Deer harvest down…due to hogs?

> “If you go back to 2010-12, we’ve gone down about 100,000. That’s a significant difference.”
> The precipitous drop in harvest numbers…can be attributed a decrease in bag limits and opportunities to harvest antlerless deer….
> “What concerns me most is the steady drop. Is the deer herd declining? Is it statewide? Is it regional? We don’t have the data to know this.”
> …observationally, the overall herd in MS appears to be increasing, but if it is actually declining…one possible issue could be wild hogs.

5. SC has new antlerless regs.

> A new law…eliminated the 8 date-specific anterless tags, replacing them with two anterless tags that may be used on any day.

6. OH: Special archery hunt lotteries on Sep 21 and 25.

7. WA: No antlerless deer hunting this year.

> …in response to decreasing harvest numbers, tough winters in 2016 and 2017 and a devastating outbreak of bluetongue in 2015.

8. IN: Purple paint = no trespassing.

In other words, “no hunting” signs are no longer needed:
> Landowners now have the opportunity to spray purple paint on trees and posts around the area where entry is prohibited. The bottom of each mark must be 3-5′ above the ground…every 100 yards.

Kinda like this, except on trees too:

9. OK: New hunting opportunity coming to Tishomingo NWR.

> Refuge mgr Rick Cantu: “…going to be south of the Washita River — that’s where we will allow archery deer hunting. We will continue our regular deer hunts on the refuge on the north side of the Washita.”

10. Best deer binos for under $200.

Editor’s pick is the Vortex Crossfire HD 12×50 — a little over $200 on the Vortex site but the street price is under that:

11. MN: Doorbell-licking deer wakes up man at 2:30 am.

> …nothing good comes from a doorbell ring at that time of the night. What he found was a deer that had apparently climbed up 10 steps onto his deck and was licking the doorbell.

Deer Disease News

1. MN: First cases of EHD in wild whitetails.

> The MN DNR confirmed the first 2 cases of epizootic hemorrhagic disease (EHD) in wild whitetail deer. The disease has been killing deer in nearby states for years, and was confirmed to kill tame deer on farms in southeast MN in 2018 and earlier this month.

2. IN: Reduced antlerless quotas because of EHD.
In parts of southern IN. Can’t link it but it’s on the DNR website….

3. WI collecting deer heads for CWD monitoring.

> CWD testing is free of charge to the hunter, and anyone submitting the head will receive their results in 2-3 weeks. In addition to focused sampling northern WI, targeted CWD surveillance will continue in two specific areas near Rhinelander.

4. RI discovers EEE-positive deer.

Eastern equine encephalitis:

> The discovery follows the weekend death of a West Warwick man who contracted EEE.

Gear of the Week


[Ted talking:] Always had a soft spot for the BAR. It was the first rifle I bought, in .30-06. Weren’t a ton of left-handed bolties at the local gun shop back then, and most of my hunting was 100 yards or less, so I wasn’t worried about the relative inaccuracy of a semi-auto vs. a bolt. What it lacked in tack-driving, it more than made up in pointability.
I still use it to whack the occasional hog. It’s served me well and I’ve probably taken more deer with it than any other gun I own. Now, the boys from Ogden, UT have a new version out, and Outdoor Life put it through its paces:
> The MK 3 DBM shares many of the qualities of the original sporting BARs and the BAR Mk II series that followed. But in this era of all things tactical, Browning has decided to give the MK 3 DBM a harder look.
> The DBM has a high-capacity Detachable Box Magazine (hence, DBM) that fits into the magazine well and doesn’t attach to a floor plate. The steel magazine is a solid piece of work and takes 10 rounds of .308.
> The rifle’s barrel is 18″ long with a 1:12″ twist. That short barrel makes this BAR especially compact and handy.
> Group sizes were consistently around 2″, no matter the bullet style or weight.
> The rifle’s recoil impulse is very gentle, and it is easy to keep the crosshairs on target. The crossbolt safety at the rear of the trigger guard is not the most ergonomic position for a safety, but right-handed shooters can manipulate it fairly quickly.
> From an aesthetic standpoint, the black synthetic stock won’t win any beauty contests, but I give it high marks for its trim lines and overmolded grip panels. I also think the QD flush cups for mounting a sling — one at the tip of the forend, the other on the bottom of the buttstock — are a smart feature.
> The BAR’s trigger has a shotgun-like quality to it, meaning it is a bit creepy, though it broke at a perfectly reasonable 3.5 lbs.
> If your heart is set on getting a semi-auto hunting rifle for any type of close-in game, but you find the bulk of AR-10s a turnoff, the BAR is a rifle worth considering.

Tip of the Week


Done a couple spot-and-stalks. One was in the GA piney woods early on, wound up taking a fat doe and the experience was one I’ll always remember.
For sure there’s something about “becoming one” with nature, letting time slow to a crawl, and really opening up all your senses. Not the easiest way to kill a deer, but it’ll make you a better hunter. Just remember to do it in a safe place — not crowded public land….
Realtree has a few tips for putting on the stalk:
> The swish-swish-swish of your pants isn’t going to cut it when stalking deer. You need quiet material when slipping up on wary whitetails. The best quiet camo for the money? Fleece.
> Shed everything you don’t need during your stalk…. You should only bring your bow, a quiver…binoculars and a rangefinder. Put the binos under your outer layer and the rangefinder in a chest pocket to keep them from clanking.
> You can’t slip up on a deer if you don’t know he’s there. So start in a place with a good vantage point, and glass for bedded deer. Once you locate a target buck, don’t just observe him. Look for other deer that could be bedded nearby.
> Keep tabs on the wind throughout the entire stalk. Keep it in your face if the terrain allows. Crosswinds are okay, too.

> Stalking deer is a painstakingly slow process…. The slower you move, the lower your odds of alerting the deer. Move even slower once you’re inside 100 yards.

One more time: be careful. To other hunters, a sneaky hunter can look and sound like a deer.
Okay we gotta run this:

Quote of the Week

“I was excited, pumped, sick, all at once…just a cocktail of emotions.”


Luke Brewster talkin’ ’bout the shot he made on his new world record buck. That’s right, WORLD RECORD!

Read the full deal here — and here again is a shot of that monster:

Shot of the Week


Americana Outdoors host Wade Middleton got this #stout KS buck THIS WEEK:

What’s the DB and who does it??
The DeerBlaster is a weekly roundup of the best, worst and funniest stuff about whitetail deer hunting culled from around the interwebz. We were kinda doing it already, just not the blastin’ it into your inbox part….
It’s put together by some deer nerds — Ted, Jay, Wade, couple more — from around the country. We excerpt content (and credit EVERYONE!), comment on content, do some original content — it’s an internet thing…. We do it because we can’t get enough deer hunting, hopefully you’re wired the same.
The DeerBlaster’s a work in progress, just like we are. Let us know what we can do better and thanks for readin’! Any issues, suggestions, whatever, just hit Reply to this email and we’ll get it. Thank you!
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