Bowhunters take to the stand with the pressure of making one shot count.
Story and Photography by Nate Skinner
Adrenaline — It’s the hormone secreted that causes the heart to beat so loudly it seems every creature within earshot can hear this bodily response. When the time comes for the hunter to draw a bow from the stand it is the affinity for this intense feeling that creates the addiction for the art of hunting with stick and string.
Some might consider it a “bad” or inopportune response during close encounters with one of the smartest and most studied mammals in North America, the white-tailed deer. Needless to say this rush is the derivation of buck fever.
Merriam-Webster’s Dictionary defines the term as a common description of the physiological symptoms that occur as a part of the body’s response to a highly competitive situation or an intensely exciting moment. In biological terms, adrenaline is the hormone, also known as epinephrine, secreted by the adrenal glands that is released under stressful or dramatic conditions. It causes an increased heart rate, increased blood circulation and heavy breathing—basically all the symptoms hunters experience when about to take a shot on a mature buck.
For a deer to be ethically harvested by archery equipment, the animal must undergo massive hemorrhaging or blood loss. Broadheads create this blood loss much differently than the high-speed impact of a bullet.