While many of us have done it, successfully harvesting a buck is one of the most difficult tasks a person can take on. They're extremely crafty and cunning animals with a nose for danger. However, we sometimes underestimate just how tough these animals are, too. And, although we're all guilty of doing it from time to time, we shouldn't underestimate their will to survive under extraordinary circumstances.
A good example of a whitetail's will to survive comes in this video from Michigan Whitetail Pursuit. Blake had been pursuing a buck for a few years that had earned the nickname "Tripod" because he was missing the lower portion of his back right leg. And, as you'll see, this disability made it difficult for this buck to walk, but he didn't appear to let his handicap stand in his way, as he'd managed to avoid hunters for multiple seasons.
This clip is a great reminder of why shot placement is so important. It's truly amazing what these animals can survive if you make a less-than-perfect hit. We'll never know how Tripod lost that leg, but to make it past 5 years old hobbling around like that is nothing short of impressive. If we saw this deer in our hunting area, we'd probably just assume he'd never make it through winter, as we'd presume coyotes would get the best of him, but Tripod was one of those bucks that just seem to survive almost anything.
While he didn't have a huge rack, the age, character of the rack, and the fact he only has three legs makes him a unique deer any hunter would be happy to harvest.
Congratulations on a great buck, Blake!
For more outdoor content from Travis Smola, be sure to follow him on Twitter and check out his Geocaching and Outdoors with Travis YouTube channels.