If you are trailing a wounded animal and it becomes lost, there’s no need to despair. Chances are good that its trail can be retraced.
Start by returning to the location where you last saw the animal and conducting a circular search around that point. Look for signs such as hair, blood or bone.
Wait for some time
When tracking a wounded animal and you lose its trail, it is essential to wait some time. Doing this will help locate the animal when it attempts to run back towards where it was struck. A shot that hits an animal often sends them into shock and causes them to run as fast as they can; their flight instinct activated by adrenaline will make them try and cover ground quickly. Without waiting time, recovering this animal may require several trips back to where you last saw it several times before success is achieved.
Look for signs of impact
What should you do if you are trailing a wounded animal and its trail is lost? Chances are someone else has already noticed it before you arrive, so the best course of action is to keep an eye out for anything moving – from blood to feathers or fur. Be vigilant in looking out for anything unusual or suspicious in the area. It’s possible that you may come across an animal either dead or alive. If the situation is more critical, it’s time to call in the professionals for help. Vets can tell you whether your lucky charm is still with us or not and when the animal is safe to move on its own. But the most important part of all is not to get upset if you miss your target or don’t have any luck at all; vets should always be your first port of call in such cases.
Follow the trail
If you are trailing a wounded animal and it becomes difficult to locate, the first thing you should do is stop. Take some time to consider your plan of action and decide what steps will be taken until help arrives.
If your strategy is to stay put and wait for search and rescue to find you, ensure that you are in a secure area. Additionally, take some time to inspect the area to see if there are any resources nearby that might assist in recovery efforts.
In some cases, you may be able to spot a trail leading back to where you last saw the animal. Be cautious though as wandering off it could result in injury or loss of identity.
Different trails can be utilized for various activities, such as walking, cycling, horseback riding or snowshoeing. In some cases, these routes may cross private land.
Before deciding to continue following the trail, you should take into account the weather conditions. Rain or snow can dilute visibility and make it more challenging to follow along the way.
Therefore, you may have to make wider circles than normal as you search for the wounded deer. It is best to walk slowly and cautiously as you search.
By doing this, you will be able to locate every clue without damaging it with your feet. Furthermore, it will be simpler for you to spot small blood droplets, hair or chunks of fat/tallow that could indicate where an animal was last seen.
Eventually, the trail will come to an end or the signs will fade away. This usually occurs when wounds coagulate and make it difficult for blood to seep into the ground.
Sometimes an animal may stray off course and attempt to flee or run away, even if they are still standing or have only lost 25% of their health.
Wounds that are too high, like on the shoulders or neck, can also result in death if you get a good shot at striking it down.