Why Do Hunters Want To Shoot Only Big Bucks?

Roger S. from Ohio writes to ask about hunting the biggest bucks. “I like big bucks as much as the next guy, but don’t understand why some hunters will only shoot the biggest bucks out there. What makes them so determined to only kill monster bucks?”

Dr. Dave Samuel
Dr. Dave Samuel

When I first started bowhunting, any buck was fine by me. As the years passed and I learned more about buck behavior, I started seeing bigger bucks, and started passing up smaller ones (although I did shoot a doe or two for meat for the freezer).

As I got older my passion for deer hunting increased. I scouted more, studied more, learned more, and bowhunted more. I started spending more time in states that had bigger bucks. I enjoyed the challenge. I didn’t mind not getting a buck every year. I saw and passed on bucks that I would have loved to take 10 years earlier. I even passed on record-book bucks on occasion, waiting for that one bigger buck I knew through scouting was out there. I don’t want to take that big buck to gain fame. I just set a goal and enjoyed the challenge. I can’t say that all big buck hunters have taken the same path I have, but those are my thoughts on why I chase big bucks.

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Dr. Dave writes a weekly column for sportsmansguide.com. Dr. Dave studied deer for 30 years as a wildlife management professor at West Virginia University. In addition he has been a bowhunter for over 40 years, with deer being his main prey. He’s also an outdoor writer and has been with “Bowhunter” magazine for 31 years.

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