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University » News Breakers » Youth Kills Louisiana Giant Buck

Youth Kills Louisiana Giant Buck
by Greg Hicks

Before he peered under the shooting rail on the stand he was hunting, for all Thomas Artall of St Landry Parish knew, he was looking at the backend of a doe. It wasn’t until his little eyes focused on the rack that deer had on his head that he realized that he was looking at “The Man”. One shot later, the 12 year old was sky rocketed into a celebrity at Opelousas Catholic School and fittingly ate every bit of it with a spoon.

As he climbed into his stand on the morning of January 22, 2012, Thomas had brought home 8 deer in his young hunting career and was experienced enough that his Dad, Pat, allowed him to hunt alone. That morning Pat had his two sons with him and as they made their way through the woods, he’d drop them off at their stands.  Thomas was dropped off at the stand closest to the truck, while his brother and father continued on their way.

Knowing that they’d be hunting this area, several days prior Pat laced the dim road that Thomas would be watching with corn and hoped that his efforts would entice a nice buck to the stand so his son would be able to get a a shot.

As daylight broke, Thomas waited patiently for the woods to come alive. As he sat quietly, he thought he heard a noise and when he looked towards the sound, he couldn’t believe what he saw. “I thought I heard something walking in front of me, so I looked that way. All I could see was the backend of the deer, so I looked under the shooting rail that’s on the stand to get a better look and when I did, all I could think was ‘Whoa’,” Thomas said.

The unique characteristics of this brow tine made scoring difficult for LDWF and may add more to the score.

The position the young man was in left him unable to take rest on the shooting rail and for a split second, he thought about taking a free handed shot, but then his hunting experience took over and he repositioned himself.  When he laid his gun on the rest, he indeed had a comfortable shot, except this time it was his scope that was causing him trouble. “When he got to the spot I wanted to shoot him in, I couldn’t find him in the scope, so I dialed it down all the way,” explained Thomas.

After one more scope adjustment, the deer was in the crosshairs and the boy was ready to shoot. As he held his breath, Thomas squeezed the trigger on his 30-.06 and watched as the buck disappeared in the woods ahead of him at 7:00 A.M.

Meanwhile Pat, who was sitting in his stand, waited patiently for his son to inform him of what he’d shot. “I could see him from where I was hunting and he sent me a text message saying he thought he’d hit the deer. I told him to get down and look, because he said it was close. I saw him get down and walk into the woods and then he called me saying he didn’t see any blood,” explained Pat.

Thomas informed his Dad that he thought he’d heard the deer get back up, so Pat told him to get back into his stand and wait. As Pat got to the kill site, he realized that the buck was indeed close to Thomas. The shot was only a mere 20 yards long. The worry of the boy not finding any blood as fresh on Pat’s mind, but when Thomas motioned for him to go to where he’d shot the deer, all worries were washed away. “It looked like you poured the blood from a bucket onto the ground. I said, ‘Thomas, I found blood’ and then I went about three steps and I could see the deer laying there. I just yelled out “You got him Thomas!’” laughed Pat.

The deer ended up having 15 points, had main beams just over 25 inches, and green scored 176 3/8. “He killed the deer at 7 o’clock yesterday and we didn’t get home til dark! I rode him and showed him to everybody we could. Thomas posted that picture on his Facebook page last night and today at school he had kids coming up to him that he didn’t even know, talking about that deer,” laughed Pat.


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4 Responses to: Youth Kills Louisiana Giant Buck

  1. Beaver    (January 24th, 2012 at 12:33 pm)

    Its goin to be hard to beat that buck…congrats ti him!!!!!!!!

  2. Bayou    (January 24th, 2012 at 6:46 pm)

    What an awesome deer. Congrats!!!!!!!!!!!

  3. mpgass    (March 19th, 2012 at 10:50 am)

    A dear of a lifetime and taken at such a young age. WTG CONGRATS!!!!!

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