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Wedge-tailed Eagle saves hunt

14 Oct 2019
@ 01:36 am (GMT)

Todd Free

Friday to Sunday I was hunting at a property I have been visiting regularly since 2009. Spent some time at a couple spots with good, long views of lots of country, but no game appeared. I did see a mob of 14 goats 1720 yards away on private property but since they were off limits i just observed them for awhile.

On Sunday after seeing nothing all weekend I was packing up camp to go home and went to have some food at a spot over looking the all-but dry creek due to the 1.5 year drought we have had here. Looking south down the creek I could see a large bird sitting in a tree. I walked back to camp, grabbed the binos and returned to watch an immature wedge-tailed eagle enjoying some shade over the creek. Whilst viewing the eagle I heard what kinda sounded like a goat bleating but wasn't convinced and ignored it. I kept watching the eagle and heard the very faint bleating again. This time I looked around without the binos and observed a flash of white 200 yards down stream and confirmed with the binos it was a goat.

Sprinted the 100 yards back to camp, grabbed my rifle, pack and sprinted back. Got in position, loaded a round and got the goat in view with the scope- just as it went out of view. Since I know the area so well I knew exactly where the goat was and what roo trail I needed to take to intercept it and still keep my distance. I put my pack on, shouldered the rifle and headed south with the wind in my face. Within 35 yards of where I saw the goat the wind does a 180 and my position is blown!!

I stay put and listen and watch, but visibility is 50 yards max in this thick bush. With the wind still at my back I keep heading south anyway assuming my quarry has gotten wind of me and is promptly making tracks. I stalk semi-quietly another 200 yards south thinking positive but convinced that the goat is long gone and I will just head back to camp and go. I hear the bleating again but this time it is from the direction I just came. Surely not?? I head back upstream towards camp, closer to the creek, as the wind is in my favour again. Walk 5 yards stop, listen, look. Another 5 yards, stop listen, look. Just about to walk another 5 yards when I catch some movement 60 yards to my right across the creek.

The bright white goat is practically climbing a tree to get at some greenery. I move a few yards closer to get a clear shot through the trees and shrubs. Once it returned to the ground I put the round through his right shoulder and re-loaded quickly as I have never seen a single goat walking through these parts. Of course, 4 more startled goats appear from out of sight from out of the creek-bed not sure which direction to go. I bleat as best I can like a goat and two head towards me. I take the leader down (reverse texas heart shot) and the one behind pauses while I reload. It heads the opposite direction of the terribly loud noise but is fooled again by my bleating long enough to assure its demise. The last two goats were not so easily fooled/learned quick and made haste through the dense bush.

The first goat I shot was 60 yards away and the 30.06, 168gr ELD-M made contact at 2771 fps and went through the right shoulder, did a ninety-degree turn and exited straight down through the chest! When I arrived where it had expired it was laying on its right side and I was expecting to see a large exit wound through the left shoulder/chest, but instead noticed the 1.5" hole in its chest right between its legs. That was a first, but the end result was the same.


15 Oct 2019
@ 10:00 am (GMT)

Warwick Marflitt

Re: Wedge-tailed Eagle saves hunt
" did a ninety-degree turn and exited."
Lee Harvey Oswald had a bullet that did that!
He wasn't shooting goats though!

Goats will climb just about anything to reach green pickings. A very destructive pest....
Thanks for sharing your Wedgy hunting tips


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