One Shot To Kill: Where To Aim on A Deer?

Deer are ideal creatures for hunting, and a lot of hunters have been fascinated with the satisfaction of taking at least one down. However, you can’t just go into the fields and randomly shoot deer when you want to.

Knowing where to aim on a deer is an essential, fundamental knowledge that you need to learn to have a successful hunt. This article will help you with it.

One Shot To Kill

Killing a deer with a single shot is the dream of any hunter. And making it a reality requires some skills and comprehension in any situation.

As most expert hunters would agree, the secret to killing an animal in one shot is: “depends on the factors.” Multiple factors are involved; bullet type, distance, meat volume, and shooting skills to name a few.

Some experts would say the best option is to; visualize an imaginary line from tear duct to tear duct and shoot your bullet about 2 ¾ inches center above that line.

Should You Go For The Boiler Room?

The most popular shooting spot among hunters is the boiler room – the area where the heart and lungs reside.

However, some veterans would disagree to this for the reason they believe the boiler room has the greatest margin of error. And for some unfortunate reasons, making errors is far easier than making things right.

Despite that, there are still a lot of hunters who respect this old rule of hunting. At the end of the day, it’s up to you to determine which part to shoot makes you most comfortable.

Where To Aim on A Deer

Here Are The Hottest Spots On Where To Aim on A Deer:


  • This spot is ideal for hunters who don’t want to kill the deer instantly, though it could have been more painless for the deer if it has died right away.
  • Shot in the heart or lungs or between them creates a massive hemorrhage which is beneficial in your part as the hunter.
  • Since the deer is pierced with blood flowing out of its body, you can then follow the blood trail to locate the deer.
  • The deer will become tired or die eventually; you wouldn’t have a hard time finding it.

  • Though you don’t need to be entirely accurate in shooting this part, there could still be some flaws waiting to happen. For instance, the deer may recover when you clip only a part of one of its lungs.
  • Depending on the hunter, it would be a burden to follow the blood trail before you could finally spot the deer. However, it’s actually quite more adventurous and fun when you do it.

High shoulder

  • This approach is the best shock-and-stun shot. A fast and big bullet could easily infiltrate the deer’s body and snap the spine in a matter of split seconds.
  • As a result, the deer’s nervous system experiences a short-circuit-like phenomenon, and at the same time breaks the ribs, making the deer immobile or be killed in an instant.

  • If you are not a seasoned hunter yet and is still a beginner in the world of hunting, the chances of missing this shot are quite high. However, you could still make it if luck is on your side or if you’re already an expert.
  • Another reason that could discourage you in using this shot is it makes a lot of mess. The bullets may successfully anchor the deer, but it could damage a lot of meat (to the upper backstrap from the shoulder through its neck).
  • Keep in mind that your goal is the deer meat and not just the fact that you can kill it. Unless your goal is just the fun of taking down a game and you don’t care about harvesting its meat, then this shot is probably for you.


  • A precise bullet will suffice in killing a deer in an instant. This is one of the ultimate shot and is one of the most favorites of hunters because this approach can take down a deer without damaging a massive amount of meat.
  • The secret behind damaging less meat is the immense shock in the vertebrae and spinal cord.

  • Everything comes with a price indeed. Harvesting the sweet fruit of this shot can be a little difficult for some hunters because the vital part of a deer’s neck is quite small.
  • There are also times when a slightly missed shot will only make the deer paralyzed. This means a second shot is required to finish what you’ve started. If you value each bullet, you can save one (that could have been used in the second shot) by slitting the throat of the deer.


  • A direct hit on the brain means an immediate death to the deer. Just like an accurate shot to the neck’s critical part, a hit on the brain also means less meat loss because the only part that’s been damaged is the head.
  • You also don’t need to be a total expert in hunting when doing this shot because unlike hitting other parts of a deer (like the spine for example), the head is something you can shoot from a lot of angles. The spine, on the other hand, means you need to be particularly at the back of the deer for you to hit it.

  • Though you can hit the brain from multiple angles, there is still a chance you can miss it. The reason behind lies in the brain’s size; it’s small. A small target from a distance always means a chance of missing especially when you are aiming from a distance.
  • A deer could move anytime without notice, and so you have to be extremely precise and adaptive when doing this shot. It’s not bad to miss on your first shots but make sure you’re able to do it successfully eventually.


Knowing where to aim on a deer is a necessary knowledge that every hunter must possess. What’s left for you is to incorporate what you have learned from this article and apply it on your next hunting trip. Happy hunting!