The most important choice you have make to bowhunt alligators is WHO you go with. I’d be irresponsible not to point this out from the get go. Normally alligators leave people alone, but when you sock an arrow into a mature, wild alligator chances are nearly 100% that he will become violent. So you have to hunt with someone who is experienced and knows what to do when the gator fights back. Because it will.
This is my 5th alligator bowhunt with David Mills of Team Struttn Ruttn Reeln near Arcadia, Florida. In my opinion he is the best there is; bow, gun, harpoon or whatever. He knows how to find mature gators and how to hunt them … as well as what to do when things get dangerous.
I recommend David Mills to all levels of gator hunters, newbie to seasoned veteran. David Mills 863-303-4726, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
EQUIPMENT COMMENTS (Arrows & Gator Heads)
For this hunt I brought both Fish arrows and arrows with broadheads. The fish arrows are fiberglass arrows from a Muzzy Gator Getter kit. We attached Braided Dacron bowfishing line to the gator arrow. The loose end fastens to a float, I used a AMS Bowfishing Yellow float.
In the past we’ve used an AMS Retriever reel on our bows to hold the line. It is an excellent reel. This year I couldn’t find mine so we used plastic buckets to hold the float and Dacron line. It worked very well too.
I had two Muzzy fish arrows tipped with Gator Heads rigged this way. But under the pressure of the hunt, and due to the gator’s closeness and aggressiveness, I only used one fish arrow and switched to regular arrows with broadheads.
I had also brought along some VAP carbon arrows from Victory Archery. The “VAP” stands for “Victory Armor Piercing” arrows and they are advertised as being very tough with incredible penetration. These are small diameter arrows and truthfully, I had my doubts that an arrow this skinny could be very tough.
I fletched the arrows with Opti-Vanes and Goat Tuff High Performance Glue from Goat Tuff Products using the E-Z Fletch ‘Mini’ from Arizona Rim Country. After I shot the alligator with the gator arrow and he attacked our row boat I knew I was going to find out if the VAP’s were tough or not.
Every time the gator made a swipe at us he went underwater and David used the Dacron line to manhandle it back up so I could shoot again. I took 5 shots with the VAP’s before I finished the brute. The gator was too close to use my bowsight and I shot it instinctively. Several times the gator crashed into the side of the boat brutally hard. Once he got himself up on the top rail and snapped savagely at David. The VAP’s were hit and bent with crushing force.
But not a single arrow broke. Or cracked.
Now lets talk Broadheads. I used Grim Reaper Razor Tips. Those ridges on the top of a mature gator are hard as a rock. So are the bones on their heads and shoulders. Many broadheads can’t even penetrate those hard b0ne. Grim Reapers can.
Like a giant jumping jack, he dove down and then charged back to the surface, biting and clawing wildly. My shot opportunities were all head and shoulder shots. Every broadhead penetrated the tough bones and stuck out of the opposite side. One ferrell was bent but if you could’ve seen the sledge hammer force of the gator colliding with the boat you wouldn’t be surprised about that.
To Bowhunting.Net: Alligator Bowhunt 2012 Home Page
The 2012 Bowhunting.net Alligator Bowhunt is sponsored by:
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