Inspecting blood left on an arrow can reveal precise shot placement

Time seems to slow down in those final seconds before a bow hunter lets loose, but as soon as that arrow leaves the string time speeds up with a vengeance. Any decent hunter will try to observe his shot placement and where his quarry ran to make tracking easier. If the arrow passed cleanly through the target, it can usually be found near the start of the blood trail. Arrows that stick the landing will frequently break off and fall somewhere along the trail if the whitetail runs through brush or woodlands.

Inspecting the ‘dirty’ arrow can give the hunter a great deal of information about shot placement and the lethality of their shot. Blood consistency and color are notably different between a heart, liver, or lung shot. A gut shot will leave a variety of other materials mixed with the blood along with that distinctively foul gut odor. Liver and kidney shots will leave dark burgundy blood while a lung shot will be a bright pink color often accompanied by bubbles. That perfect heart shot will leave a bright crimson color and may have some elements of a lung shot depending on the angle of entry.

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