We can learn a lot from our mistakes, so here are a few lessons that I have seen or heard that you will hopefully not be repeat
Gutting a deer is best done at the time. This guy was out shooting Roe Buck in the summer and got one about 20-00 hours, he decided to take it home rather than do it on the spot. When he arrived he put it off until morning. The next day he came down and decided to do the job in the kitchen. The deer had bloated up and as he cut through the belly skin the stomach expanded like a balloon, hit the knife and exploded! The contents, a bright green porridge covered the kitchen and he had to explain it to his wife!
No bolt, wrong bullets
Some shooters store their rifles with the bolt out, which is good for security, but it can be forgotten. A case in point, we were out hunting, and we started to get our gear ready when one guy started swearing as he had forgotten his bolt, which he’d left in his gun room. As can be imagined he didn’t have a good day!
More serious is taking the wrong ammunition. A colleague had a 308 Win, which used molly-coated, bullets to good effect. Getting ready for the hunt he slipped a box into his pack. Next morning in the high seat a nice Roe Buck at 200 yards; easy shot. Placing the cross hair behind its elbow he fired and instead of it going down it stood, then ran. He followed but never found it and reported it to the land owner. A week later he got a call saying the deer had been found, with perfect shot placement. He discovered the answer later as he also had some molly-coated target bullets of the same weight and calibre and had taken them by mistake! Which had not expanded at all.
New hunter stalked up to a heard of Fallow and picked a big buck and dropped him. Pleased with himself, he walked out to it and realised he was in a very muddy ploughed field. There was no way of getting his 4X4 to it, nor could he drag it due to its weight, also it would be covered in mud. The only solution; gut it on the spot and cut it into quarters and hump it out. Not a great end to a successful stalk!
To avoid this kind of mistakes, please check our list of the hunting habits you should have.