What Color Is That Blood?

What Color Is That Blood?

Colorblind hunters need to get creative to stay on tough blood trails.




If you're colorblind, spray a mixture of two parts water with one part hydrogen peroxide onto the trail. The hydrogen peroxide makes blood foam, which enables you to see the blood.


For each 100 men reading this, some 12 of you are colorblind. Women are more fortunate, with only about 1 in 200 suffering the condition.


Symptoms of colorblindness vary. Most common is the inability to distinguish between red and green, second the inability to distinguish blue and yellow. The red and green affliction almost always accompanies the blue and yellow. And then comes achromatopsia -- the inability to see any colors. Remember black-and-white TV? That's how these folks see the world.

What does this have to do with bowhunting? Well, when you can't distinguish red, you have a hard time following a blood trail, a big part of successful bowhunting. As a member of the red-and-green club, I have experienced that firsthand.

The most common affliction of colorblindness is the inability to distinguish red and green, an obvious handicap in blood-trailing. Various products can help anyone overcome this handicap.

"I know I hit him solid," I told my partner. Thirty minutes earlier, I had shot a beautiful 4x4 whitetail. I knew the arrow had blown through both lungs. Still, I could not follow the blood trail and had to call in my buddy to help scour the ground for sign. An hour later, we -- actually, he -- found the buck stone dead. Instead of taking the obvious trail, the buck had circled wide, and I had missed the blood.

How do you know if you are colorblind? Get an eye exam. I was just a few hours shy of earning my pilot's license when I went in for an eye exam to complete the procedure. The eye doctor laid it on me. "You can fly, but not at night. You're colorblind."

Really weird taste in clothing could be an indicator, too. My wife still laughs at my purchase of a "bright blue" King Rope baseball cap that actually turned out to be a somewhat feminine shade of purple.

Recognizing that you are colorblind is the first step in overcoming the deficiency as you try to follow a blood trail.

Here are five ways to find your buck despite your handicap:
1. Mix two parts water and one part hydrogen peroxide in a spray bottle. Anywhere a blood trail runs thin, "spritz" the ground with the solution. The hydrogen peroxide will make any blood it contacts foam up. This brew even works on old blood, and it shows up well under the light of a lantern or flashlight.
2. Buy a commercial spray. Tink's Starlight Bloodhound (www.tinks69.com) highlights blood trails in the dark. Locate the point of impact or the blood trail and spray the area with the product. Chemicals in the spray make blood glow in the dark for an easy-to-follow trail. Another product that enhances blood trails is Bluestar Blood Tracking Reagent (www.bloodglow.com).
3. Try the Game Finder Pro Illuminator (www.game-finder.com). This flashlight-sized unit scans for body heat and includes blood-tracking technology. Distinct tones notify you if you're getting hot or cold. Also, check out the Primos line of Bloodhunter Lights (https://shop.primos.com/c-110-blood-trailing-lights.aspx).
4. Consider using a string tracker like Eastman's String Tracker 2500 (www.eastmanoutfitters.com). String trackers are not new, but the concept remains valid. They augment any blood trail by laying down an easy-to-follow string trail.
5. Use man's best friend. Mistakenly called blood-tracking dogs, well-trained dogs can differentiate the smell of wounded deer from healthy animals. Check state laws regarding the use of tracking dogs. For more information on this subject, contact www.deersearch.org.

Roughly 12 percent of men suffer some form of colorblindness. Only about one in 200 women are colorblind. Colorblind persons can adapt to hunt normally.

As for me, I'll probably just stick with my best friend to help me track deer. I feed him occasionally for helping me, but at least I don't have to clean out his kennel.

The author is an outdoor writer from Sheridan, Wyoming.

Recommended for You

How-To

10 Workout Routines Every Bowhunter Should Master

Adam Holt

As a bowhunter, you need complete faith in your physical ability to hike in to your hunting...

ATA Show

Best New Binoculars for Bowhunters in 2019

Brian Strickland - January 11, 2019

Check out our list of the best new-for-2019 optics from the ATA Show!

ATA Show

Best New Broadheads for 2019

Brian Strickland - January 10, 2019

From fixed to hybrid to mechanical, we've rounded up the best new broadheads from the 2019 ATA...

See More Recommendations

Popular Videos

Kentucky Bowfishing Competition

Bowhunter Editor Curt Wells has a friendly bowfishing competition with members of the Muzzy Bowfishing team on Kentucky Lake.

Dead On: Picking a Spot

On this edition of "Dead On," Hall-of-Fame bowhunter Randy Ulmer shares advice on picking a spot.

Daybreak Whitetail Bowhunt

Bowhunter TV Editor Derek Mleynek has a chance to fill his buck tag on a mixed bag hunt in Texas.

See more Popular Videos

Trending Stories

Big Game

Beginner's Guide to Bowhunting Mule Deer

Ron Niziolek

Follow this advice before embarking on your first hunt!

Bows

9 Top Budget Bows for 2018

Tony J. Peterson - February 20, 2018

This past fall my twin daughters started kindergarten, which meant that I stopped paying for

How-To

Tree Saddle Demo Climb With Aider Use

Mike Carney - June 07, 2019

Go farther, hunt deeper, and trek lighter while enjoying all-day comfort.

See More Stories

More How-To

How-To

How To Pattern Elusive Bucks

C.J. Winand

Minimal disturbances and proper trail-camera placement will help you pattern hard-to-find...

How-To

No More Stalling – Schedule Your Perfect Bowhunt Now

Tony J. Peterson

There will never be a better time to travel in search of archery hunting adventure than...

How-To

No Secrets with Modern Hunting Technology

Dwight Schuh

New tech has made hunting more efficient, but it also raises several questions about ethics...

See More How-To

GET THE MAGAZINE Subscribe & Save

Temporary Price Reduction

SUBSCRIBE NOW

Give a Gift   |   Subscriber Services

PREVIEW THIS MONTH'S ISSUE

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.

×