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Old February 14, 2011, 08:47 AM   #1
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Charging animals.

Lots of talk going on in the current bear thread of the week.

Charging animals. Now, I wonder who has ever been charged by an animal? I hear that moose are pretty good at charging, I've yet to have one come off the internet and get to me. You know, I can admit that all my moose hunting is done vicariously. Same with most other really dangerous game. I'm just an old working boy in Georgia, not a whole lot of dino-fauna here. I hear that we have big foots in North Ga, but they don't come around here.

I was kind of charged by a black bear in 1987. I shot him with a 300 mag, hit him in the snout. He chased his tail, working his way toward me. I bent the bolt on my rifle when I went to chamber another round, and could not shoot it again. He worked his way pretty close to me before he finally died. You know, back then, we did not have to take a full "load out" to go hunting. Even today, I rarely take more than one gun into the forest. I will take a pistol if I am hog hunting with my single shot 45/70 Ruger.

Another time, I shot a hog in the face, emptied an 18 round clip of 22 lr onto its head before it turned and ran, it got after me while squirrel hunting. I don't know how many times I hit it. The only animal that ever got ahold of me was a squirrel that was not quite dead when I shot him with a 20 gauge. He didn't get to bite me, but gave my 15 yr old heart a real palpitation. You?
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Old February 14, 2011, 08:59 AM   #2
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I say take away their credit cards.
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Old February 14, 2011, 09:00 AM   #3
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Scout, what have hear, is a failyuh to communicayte.
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Old February 14, 2011, 09:04 AM   #4
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Old February 14, 2011, 11:52 AM   #5
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I bent the bolt on my rifle when I went to chamber another round, and could not shoot it again.
A bit excited were you?
How did you bend it? On opening, bent up or back? trying to close it before in battery, bent down?
Please describe the gun or the thread if this is already discussed.

I did have a Moose do a short charge while Elk hunting in Colorado. I was looking for a tree and there were none close that I could climb and the what-to-do's start to overwhelm one very fast. I sure didn't want to shoot him and I didn't want to fire my one shot, so I looked down and he stopped about 25 yards away.
This was my fault to start with as he was peacefully browsing in a willow thicket and I did a few UUuuuggs with cupped hands and then regretted it.
For the message of the Cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, But to us who are being saved, It Is The Power Of God. 1Corinthians 1-18

Last edited by Gbro; February 14, 2011 at 11:59 AM.
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Old February 14, 2011, 12:12 PM   #6
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The rifle was Lh Savage. I ejected the spent round and that is all she would do. I could not get the bolt back into battery. Savage repaired it. Seems that they had problems with their bolts back then. Yes, I was excited.
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Old February 14, 2011, 12:19 PM   #7
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I once had a large sow come straight at me when we started shooting at her sounder. I don't know if she was charging or just decided to run in my exact direction. I didn't wait to divine her intentions. I'm not normally a fan of head shots but I made an exception on this occasion.
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Old February 14, 2011, 12:35 PM   #8
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Yeah Terminator, I’m with you. I ain’t been charged by anything but a couple of geese and a sow or two with shoats, a stick took care of those problems. We’ve got a few black bear here that occasionally eat the seat off a four wheeler left parked in the woods, but a good loud “git” scares the hell out of them.

No Moose, Grizzly, Dinosaurs or others of that ilk either. We couldn’t hunt them anyway, decoys would be to big to fit in the pirogue.

I did get bit by a coon and a squirrel in my younger days. Thought they were dead and they weren’t. Got tularemia from the squirrel and was a sick kid for a few days. That’s when I learned what common sense was.

Good Lord if I carried as much ammo and firepower as some posters on here I’d be stuck in the mud and never get to hunt. I guess that I’m just not prepared for a swamp monster, or whatever attack, but I’ve managed to get by.
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Old February 14, 2011, 02:16 PM   #9
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When I was 15 or 16 we were on a dog drive and an evil 80lb doe came straight at me. I was sure she was bound and determined to do me in before those Walkers ran her down. I had to shoot her with a load of #1 buck from about 10ft away. Phheeeewwww, talk about close, those 15 pellets took her head off from mid snout right between her ears. It was a purely defensive kill, no way I'd shoot anything smaller than a 10 point.

I did have a hog get after me once but an uncle of mine shot it before there was any great danger.
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Old February 14, 2011, 02:29 PM   #10
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Stupid as it is.
I honked the horn at a Moose group once crossing the road. He came at truck and put a few scratches in it but that was it.Company truck,so no big deal. I learned that day do not honk at a moose 10 feet in front of you.
Damn ,,,Those things are big up close.
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Old February 14, 2011, 02:41 PM   #11
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Back in the 60's when I was young and stupid, I was playing tourist at Smokey Mountains NP. This was before the Park Service really discouraged bear/tourist interactions and I really wanted some close-up, impressive pictures of a bear.

I came to a pull-off with several cars pulled over there and stopped to see what was going on. A large sow was busy preparing dinner from a garbage can smörgåsbord, and I saw the perfect opportunity to get my pictures.

I moved to get a better angle, and didn't realize I'd moved between her and a cub (heck, I didn't even see the cub.) That's when she charged (and when I finally realized that I was young and stupid .)

Fortunately, someone left the windows down in their car and I dove head-first through the window. I think it was a bluff charge, but for that few seconds, I swear I could feel 10-foot long teeth biting my backside off .

She obviously didn't follow through, and I switched to a LONG telephoto lens for the remainder of the trip. I never did find out who owned the car so I could apologize .
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Old February 14, 2011, 02:46 PM   #12
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Every day when I open the front door I am charged by a 120lb german shepard mix.
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Old February 14, 2011, 03:07 PM   #13
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I got charged by a raccoon once, in my bedroom, when i lived in midtown Memphis. I blame his death on the aluminum baseball bat that hit his skull.

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Old February 14, 2011, 04:31 PM   #14
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I have been charged twice by a black bear protecting her cub (same bear, several weeks apart).

Both times, I was armed with nothing more than my truck keys. I was lucky - they both turned out to be mock charges (not that it mattered much, at the time...). Having a 250+ pound sow barreling toward you does not induce warm fuzzies.

Had I been armed, I would not have fired for either charge, for the following reasons:
A) My life was not yet in mortal danger, and Black Bears are protected in Florida.
3) The holster I use for the .380 I would have been carrying does not lend itself well to fast draws. I wouldn't have had time to get the pistol out.
F) I had so much adrenaline pumping through my system, I wouldn't have hit the animal, anyway. (I'm still amazed my feet managed to stay under my center of gravity while sprinting back to the truck {and the .380}).

A few weeks later, a bear turned up again, while I was checking a deep water crossing (had some massive rain, and it had changed the crossing / fording). It grunted, and stood partially upright about 15 feet from me, just behind some vegetation. I tried to sidestep each way, but the bear moved like it would follow.

Being backed up against the locked passenger door of my truck, and unarmed again... I didn't have an easy way out. I picked up a big muddy stick (small log, really), and launched it at the bear. By the time I made it into the open driver's door, evidence of the bear was nothing but swaying vegetation, moving at lightning speed through the swamp.

So, my personal thoughts are:
1) Pepper spray is a better choice.
B) I'm not going to even think about shooting.
2.5) If I fire shots at a charging predator, my finger won't touch that trigger until I know there is no other option.

I'm more afraid of angry Moose, than I ever will be of predators (including those stealthy cats).
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Old February 14, 2011, 04:52 PM   #15
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I have been. Many hogs try to run us down when doggin' them. Never had a gun with me and if I did, I doubt I would have ever had time for one well placed shot on any that have charged at or by me...

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Old February 14, 2011, 05:29 PM   #16
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I was in a canoe one time and a nautical squirel attacked me. All I heard was jaws music. I beat him off with a paddle.

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Old February 14, 2011, 05:36 PM   #17
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I got run over by several does when I was a youngster, never even had time to get my firearm up to get off a shot at them. I wound up sitting on my backside in the mud on a trail with deer foot prints on my jacket, and a seriously bruised ego. My father saw the whole scene and still reminds me of the incident 20 years later....I am glad that I could provide amusement for him..
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Old February 14, 2011, 05:48 PM   #18
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Originally Posted by Wildalaska
I was in a canoe one time and a nautical squirel attacked me. All I heard was jaws music. I beat him off with a paddle.

WildthatsreallynotmebutmaybesomeoneremembersAlaska ™©2002-2011
It wasn't a squirrel, it was a swamp rabbit. Unlike other rabbits, swampers are territorial, which may have had something to do with the "attack." Or not. It was probably almost as scared as that guy in the canoe. They (swamp rabbits, not Presidents, necessarily) are also coprophagous... These and other fun facts about Sylvilagus aquaticus may be found at this page from the Nature Conservancy... which also has the picture of the incident in question.

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Last edited by Evan Thomas; February 14, 2011 at 05:53 PM. Reason: forgot da link...
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Old February 14, 2011, 05:55 PM   #19
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They all look alike to me especially when I am terrified. A pig is a dog is a cat is a boy.

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Old February 14, 2011, 07:06 PM   #20
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when i was young i was out airgunning wth my trusty benjerman and i saw a groundhog out in a field. so i snuck up the woodline to about 20yards from it took aim and pink hit him right behind the head. what i didnt know is that a goundhog is really hard to kill. he turned and started running right at me as i was standing infront of his hole befor i could get reloaded he was right there with me. i had to use my gun as a golfclub and swang away. needless to say i got my frist groundhog at the cost of a pellet and a stock on the benjermen all in all not worth it .
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Old February 14, 2011, 09:03 PM   #21
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I had a 1980 honda 110 when I was a kid, bought it for $25. The thing barely ran, the only light it had was a front blinker that didn't blink. I was driving from my grandparents one night through a holler and some woods that seperated our land. When I came into the clearing I spooked a black ninja Bull that had gotten out of the pasture across the street and had waited to ambush me. Bull came charging, so I gunned the engine...which snapped the chain retention bolt...which made my chain fly off...which made me ditch the motorbike and haul butt. Luckily the bull was just after the bike. When I'd cleared far enough away and didn't feel a horn goring a new hole to poop from I turned and watched that sucker give my bike a good horning and stomping.

Also got charged and kicked by an ostrich once. Those suckers are mean!
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Old February 14, 2011, 11:22 PM   #22
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I used to get charged by buffalo's quite often when I was younger (grandpa raised them). If you were feeding you had to run and jump into the box of the pickup let me tell you I could have out ran and out jumped any olympic hurdler when that happened. I have also been charged by turkeys with chicks talk about mean!
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Old February 15, 2011, 12:19 AM   #23
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Been charged by plenty of cows and bulls.

I used to mess with deer at strip mines. I would trap the deer on peninsula cliffs so there was only one way out, through me. They would not try to gore me but were more like football players faking a charge to only cut right or left at the last second. You get 4 or more trapped like that and it gets really hectic because they will get more frantic each time you block their exit.
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Old February 15, 2011, 05:25 AM   #24
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I've been "charged" a few times.

Once by a javalina that was trying to get out of the mine shaft I was standing in front of. I kicked it in the head as it went between me and a rock face at the side of the entrance.

Another time by a fox when I was critter calling. It got between my cousin and I so that I couldn't shoot it, and the episode ended with the fox leaving at a high rate of speed after passing over my head as I ducked and rolled to get away from it. I ended up at the ED for the start of a rabies vaccine later that day.

Being a critter caller, I've had coyotes and such running straight at me many times at pretty fast speeds. Not really "charging", but... They make pretty easy targets in most cases.

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Old February 15, 2011, 06:45 AM   #25
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Didn't get directly charged...

... but was out on a hog hunt in the Everglades with some other guys, when they flushed several hogs. A couple of them came running directly my way.

I wasn't too pleased with the setup. The other guys were concealed in the brush where those hogs had been, and basically would have been my backstop.

I drew the SBH .44 I had on my hip, but held fire and hoped for the best, since I really didn't want to risk a shot with the two guys on the far side of the hogs.

You can bet I was very happy when the two hogs broke off to either side of me.

I was less happy when those two knuckleheads gave me crap about "why didn't you take the shot?"

On another occasion, was at the beach once (New Smyrna), when a dorsal fin started racing my way. A second one appeared, and not unlike the hogs, they broke to either side. Dolphins, as it turned out. For a moment there, I was sweating bricks. Once I recognized them as dolphins, I was a mix of happy and embarrassed.

On yet another occasion, also at New Smyrna, I was body-surfing with some buds. I had just stood up from a wave ride in, when a flopping object flew over my shoulder from the shore side. Appeared to be a small spinner shark; tail almost slapped my face as it flew by. A surf fisherman had hooked him, and had gotten him off the line by whipping it once around his head and slashing the line with a knife. I was going to have a word or two with him about lobbing sharks at people when my buddies decided it might be a good idea to restrain me. The fisherman left the area.

When I was a kid, I was out canoeing with my parents in Maine, when we came upon a moose and her calf, swimming in Flagstaff lake. They are cool to watch, but we opted to switch from paddles to outboard and haul out, when the cow started heading our way. She apparently didn't like the canoe getting anywhere near her calf (not a big surprise, that, but I was eight, and my dad has always made interesting choices when it comes to critters.)

Speaking of my dad's critter misadventures, my mother got charged by a bull moose one night, due to one of my dad's poor choices. Flagstaff lake is man-made, and when Maine has had a dry winter, with little snowmelt in the spring, Central Maine Power still runs the hydro-electric dam. So, the lake reverts to a river in a mud-plain. My grandparents' waterfront property went from a slope into the lake, to about a four foot vertical drop to the mud.

In the summer of one of those dry years, we had come back to my grandparents' cabin from an unsuccessful bit of hornpout fishing near the bridge to Stratton. It had started out well, until my dad shone a light under the bridge, revealing a rather large bat colony. My little sister and my mother were both bat-o-phobes, so this revelation ended that particular expedition.

We went back to my grandparents' (dad's side) cabin, in my dad's then new Saab 99, which was his pride and joy. Mom, my sister and I went inside. Dad apparently decided to scan the river and mud-plain with his high beams. Moments later, he yelled for my mother to come outside, there was something she just had to see.

Shortly after that, my mother came back inside, out of breath, shaking, and muttering "I am going to kill him." Mom is of Sicilian descent, so one can't take such statements overly lightly...

My dad came in a little after that, looking very sheepish, and just a wee bit scared of my mother.

My grandparents just looked perplexed.

Finally got the story, an hour or two later.

When my mother went outside, my father pointed out a bull moose, a couple hundred yards away, in the Saab's high beams. She thought it was something I should see, and wanted to call for me to come out, but my dad told her that would be a bad idea. She asked why, and he explained that there had been a cow with the bull (it was the rut season), and the cow had run when the lights had lit her up; the bull might be just a wee bit hostile.

Turned out to be a spot-on assessment. The bull suddenly charged toward the lights, and my parents.

Mom turned and ran for the cabin. Note: my grandparents were doing some renovations, including replacing the front steps. The old steps had been removed; the new ones were not yet installed; it was perhaps a 2.5ft leap up to the doorway, and my mother was not in top shape at this time.

Mom managed to leap up to the doorway, just in time to hear my dad yell for her to come back, quick! He had never closed the trunk of the Saab, which he had opened to remove the fishing gear, and now he couldn't see in order to back up and away from the bull moose.

My mother ran back and closed the trunk, at which point my dad drove off (not out of maliciousness; just every once in a while he does things without thinking...) The moose at this point was perhaps 50 yards away, and my mother was about equal parts terrified and furious. She made her second run for the cabin.

Just before reaching the door, she heard a loud crash, and some snapping wood. She made it inside, though.

A game warden friend of my grandfather's came by the next day, and checked out the tracks. He said it was a large bull, and that the crashing noise my mother had heard was the bull, apparently blinded by the Saab's lights, running head-first into a birch tree as it tried to make its way up the steep bank. Bark was skinned; pile of droppings was at the base of the tree; large hoof-prints indicated a moose staggering sideways away from the tree.

That moose had then walked down the mud-flat until it reached the community boat ramp; came up the ramp; and headed straight for my grandparents' cabin, where it (for some reason) attacked the outhouse.

My father spent several days apologizing. Over thirty years later, he still hasn't quite lived it down.

Sorry for the long post, guess I'll leave the bear story for some other time.


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