The experience of the hunter is depending on how many time he practice. Extreme cases of buck fever are usually reserved for the novice and as he gains experience, he gains control over nerves and muscles so that the initial shock does not last long enough to prevent his bagging the deer.
I know of one man who has a case of buck fever every time he shoots a deer, yet the effects do not hit him until the deer is down. He shoots almost automatically on sighting a deer, and then his hand will shake so badly that he has to take time out for a smoke before he can dress out his game. He tells me that this reaction hits him every time he kills a deer. Evidently he hunts under a nervous strain which is released when the kill is made.
One phase of the nervous system over which we have little control is our individual reaction time or the interval between sighting something and doing something about it. In the case of the hunter, this means the interval between each action from the time the deer is sighted to the time of the shot. This lag is difficult to measure because it is seldom the same under all conditions in an individual.
By practicing the motion of bringing the gun into shooting position until it becomes almost automatic, we are able to cut the reaction time so that the only important lag occurs between the time of identifying the game and of pulling the trigger. A portion of this time lag should be deliberate in order to check target identification and sight alignment, but that portion which is due to mental and muscular reaction should be held to the hunter's personal average by avoiding anything that has a tendency to retard his reaction-time. Since different things affect different people in different ways, there is no hard-and-fast rule which can be followed. Most of us are a bit sluggish after eating a heavy meal, and a very small amount of alcohol will slow the reactions. Possibly an extra cup of coffee, or the lack of it, will have an adverse effect on some individuals. Each person should avoid anything, which he thinks might interfere with his reactions. My average time between sighting a deer and the first shot seems to be about the time it takes a deer to make one jump from a standing start. Probably more than half of this time lag is due to slow reaction.
This means I have no chance to hit a deer which crosses an open place with one jump unless I am able to see him in the surrounding woods. I have had deer walk across a ten-foot woods road before I could make identification and bring the sights to bear, and yet at times my reaction has been so fast that the deer seemed to move in slow motion.
I recall one such instance when I sighted a deer just as its front feet were leaving the ground as it prepared to jump. The deer's head and shoulders rose until the deer was almost upright. At that time I had the gun aimed at its shoulder and I squeezed off a shot.
In the case of the hunter, this means the interval between each action from the time the deer is sighted to the time of the shot. Practice means perfect, by practicing the motion of bringing the gun into shooting position until it becomes almost automatic, we are able to cut the reaction time so that the only important lag occurs between the time of identifying the game and of pulling the trigger. Beginners have to get themselves some practice before they go for hunting, for a better shot.