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Thread: Buck fever. Have you had it?

  1. #1
    Member Max Headroom's Avatar
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    Buck fever. Have you had it?

    Last week I shot a spiker. While stalking him, I found myself briefly affected by a trace of what I assume to be buck fever.

    I felt excitement, stress, anxiety. It passed quickly, but was interesting while it was there.

    If I'd felt it in a much bigger more overwhelming way, it could've affected my judgement and ability to shoot accurately.

    Do you get it, and does it affect you much?
    Been Upto likes this.
    RIP Garry S. 23/08/19

  2. #2
    Hunter gatherer dannyb's Avatar
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    no and no

  3. #3
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    I used to get it a lot when bowhunting in my young days, a bit less now.
    Also when I was sneaking out the barrel of my 22 to try to shoot a crow from my parents house.
    I hardly get it at all now with a rifle.

  4. #4
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    Ive had it out hardout before bro. Shaking after the shot uncontrollably from excitement. Ive been getting it less and less the more deer I shoot.
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  5. #5
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    I found my muzzle would do circles and my heart rate would go up and get all hot. But I've only shot a few deer.

    Never affects judgement. Just makes it a little harder to get a good shot off

  6. #6
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    It comes and goes, I have to consentrate a little more when taking the shot. Big horns and tusks makes it worst.
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  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Russian 22. View Post
    I found my muzzle would do circles and my heart rate would go up and get all hot. But I've only shot a few deer.
    I used to get this even with goats. Was just when standing. Prone wasnt as bad. I think i could calm down more and think about the shot placement.

    My first deer i shot at about 25m. Had just walked up a steep hill. And was walking along the track. It was so bad combination of excitement and already high heart rate i could hardly hold the rifle still. Shot it threw the backstrap.

  8. #8
    Member Micky Duck's Avatar
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    if you havent had buck fever at some stage.....either you havent been hunting much/your heart isnt in it, or are a good liar.

    its the thrill of the chase getting to you...guys have been known to empty the mag without firing a shot,be unable to pull trigger,cant stop shaking.......
    heck the last stag I shot was a classic,caught in open with pants around ankles (literally) whipped pants up,crawled to rifle,cranked a round,got semi prone for uphill shot and managed to get wobbles down to half a shoulder before touching off....dead stag was the result.
    first big solo boar,I cranked the bolt of the ol .303 so fast it was like a machine gun,hit it with first and fifth shots at 40 yards.
    first deer same deal with .30/30 fired 4 rapidly missing completely then took aim and shot it dead with the 5th.
    now days the thrill is still there but I laugh at how chilled out I get before the shot...pity the dog hasnt got there yet!!!
    time is a great healer...so is watching deer...just sit and watch them. beautiful creatures who move around like nothing else.

  9. #9
    Member Sideshow's Avatar
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    Not sure? Had situations where I could have had it. First deer I saw and shot at but was hung up in the jack and it ran right around me. Was in the bottom of a very tight basin felt like one of those velodromes. Might have had it afterwards but can’t recall as I was trying to get out of the jack while laughing so hard I nearly wet myself
    Second deer, found fresh urine on the ground so ran up the slope in front of me hind heard me and ran up the next ridge, clean miss. Didn’t have the shakes afterwards nor noticed anything before. These first two where in the Kaimais.
    Last two Stewart Island
    Third deer saw across a shaded gully again clean miss. Noticed nothing before or after. Just annoyed I’d not taken more time.
    Last deer an hour after my gully miss.
    Walked in from the beach on the way back to Fred’s camp. Little hind jumped up from where she was bedded down. Hopped over a log and was gone I gave a shout out and she put her head around a tree trunk. One threw the neck and that was my first deer on the deck.
    Only took three years.
    What I have noticed though is that when the moment of the shot is on for me in thick bush the cross hairs seem to zoom in on the target area. Like I’m extra focused. All of the 60 odd deer that I have shot this seems to always happen. It doesn’t seem to happen when over 80 yards away.
    Also not on any other game. Not even on driven boar in France but then a use a different rifle set up.
    Here’s a few pics from back in the day. Bring home the bacon and a lot of not
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    First deer
    A few days later and it’s all falling into place second deer, never looked back
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    It's all fun and games till Darthvader comes along
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  10. #10
    Member Savage1's Avatar
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    It's adrenaline, I've never had it hunting but have had it plenty of times in other situations, you get used to it after a while and learn to manage it. Some people are a lot more prone to it than others, it gives you serious tunnel vision.

    Box breathing is a good technique for managing it.

    And it certainly does effect your judgement, some more than others.

  11. #11
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    There is also another form of buck fever, its called buckless fever. It's what you experience when its been too long between hunts. You feel anxious, stressed, you fidget a lot, tend to be argumentative (or so my wife says, but I would dispute that), and your trigger finger has a terrible twitch.
    300winmag, Sideshow and berg243 like this.

  12. #12
    Member Micky Duck's Avatar
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    think back to teenage years when you first saw a set of boobs or actually got to feel one......the heart rate shot up,palms got all hot and sweaty...brain went soft as something else got hard.....
    then the big day/night when you got to feel something else. will I do it right???wow thats hot ,it finally going to happen etc etc ...... similar thing to stalking a deer....... its no wonder the odd shot got fired before aim was taken properly...

  13. #13
    Member viper's Avatar
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    I have had it a couple of times and it was strange, part of the mind amping on adrenaline and another part trying to think straight. ( hunting )
    However some events have triggered it after the event like a big shark turning up while spearfishing or something dangerous. I was probably full of Adrenaline during those events but because they are fluid and evolving you are very tuned in and immersed
    in your immediate situation so you don't feel it.
    Once the event has passed then you feel almost a high, I can see why Adrenaline junkies are always seeking it, you feel super alive and pumped. I get something similar after a intense gym session with endorphins, same kind of thin runners get.
    Micky Duck likes this.

  14. #14
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    I've had years ago when living in Bangkok, invariably ending up pulling the trigger to bloody early.
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  15. #15
    Member GravelBen's Avatar
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    There seem to be two different things that people refer to as buck fever.

    1) The excitement/adrenaline effect being discussed on this thread. I think most hunters have had a degree of this at some stage, its less likely to be dangerous and more like to result in a missed shot or wounded animal. Especially if your heart rate is already up from walking up a steep hill (been there done that, shouldn't have taken the shot while puffing but didn't want to miss the chance).

    2) People being so fixated on/expectant of shooting a deer that their mind plays tricks on them and they 'see' deer where there aren't any, sometimes with fatal consequences. Less common but probably more common than many of us would like to think - closest I've been to that was a long rabbit shooting session when an awful lot of rocks and bushes etc started to look very rabbit-shaped (I don't think I shot at any 'false rabbits', but looked at plenty through the scope to check them). From memory I stopped for a break and had a wee word with myself, but it was an interesting insight into how people can reach that state.
    Last edited by GravelBen; 02-09-2019 at 11:09 PM.

 

 

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