The crossbow is becoming an ever increasingly popular means of hunting prey, rather than a compound bow or a rifle. Many areas are now opening up to the use of a crossbow, when restrictions might apply to either that of a compound bow or rifle. Whereas the crossbow is legal to use, the use of one offers a unique challenge to the hunter. The crossbow has the added convenience of a rifle as well as having the restrictive range of archery equipment, and is well worth giving it a try. Crossbow Broadheads
Several areas have or are now considering banning the use of high powered rifles, so the trend towards crossbows and compound bows is far more active. In North America, game populations and specifically whitetails continue to grow, and to curtail these ever growing populations the crossbow is seen as an effective method. To control the deer numbers, game management authorities, can see the use of this often primitive weapon addresses the need, hence the growing popularity of this choice of weapon.
When comparing, one could say that a crossbow is just a blend between a gun and a bow, you can enjoy the stability the gun experience will give you, but at the same time the challenge of letting loose a trajectory armed with a completely different type of ammunition, and one that has distinct limitations. The effective range of a crossbow is say, about 40 yards, this is about the same as 60 or 70lb compound bow. One of the drawbacks of using a crossbow is that they can be cumbersome to carry; also they require much care and attention when drawing and releasing the string tension. As with any firing apparatus, safety is always paramount, and sometimes if you are on stand and want your crossbow cocked, this can be difficult to the sheer size of the crossbow. The crossbow is not an arrow gun, the physical range of the crossbow is limited, and the reload time is slow, that's why for ease, speed and portability, a rifle is often considered preferable.
There is many a debate between the uses of a crossbow a compound bow and that of a rifle, which is more effective? And perhaps, which is more accurate for hunting? Some people prefer a crossbow, as it is sometime seen as more challenging, and the use of this primitive weapon has a great appeal, and that a crossbow is able to be used in some suburban areas whereas a firearm is not. But saying that, the rifle is often seen as being the best choice and sometimes there is no comparison to either a crossbow or compound bow, as a rifle is considered more accurate, faster loading, and the distance you have to get between you and your prey is much less. But the use of these hunting devices can be restrictive to the area in which you live, some laws allow you to use a crossbow in the rifle season only, but in the archery season you cannot. Another plus for the use of a rifle against a crossbow and compound bow is that the arrow and bolt are relatively quiet but not completely. They are also much slower than a bullet, so the prey that you are hunting can sometimes jump, which can make the arrow or bolt hit the animal in another place than was originally intended. Saying this though, there is nothing quite like getting near to your target when hunting with a crossbow or compound. It gives you that feeling of raw hunting in its basic form, just you and your prey, whereas with the rifle, you are much further away.
When comparing the three pieces of equipment, one must consider health and strength and especially upper body extremity. One can have problems with a compound bow, in this case, a crossbow is possibly the bow that you require, either that or a rifle.
A shaft from a high performance crossbow may achieve about 350 feet per second, whilst the arrow from a high performance compound bow will tend to fly at 335 feet per second, but these speeds can vary, depending on the composite being shot off the arrow or bolt. The compound bow with its style of pulleys, usually shoot a fairly heavy arrow, compared to the lighter and shorter bolt fired from a crossbow. The effective killing range with a crossbow is no greater than your typical compound bow, if fact one can think of it as a horizontal compound bow that is being held for you at full draw, and not even stop to consider the fact that it has a rifle like stock, quite frankly that is where the likeness ends.
Usually big game animals such as bear, elk, moose and deer are better suited to being hunted with the use of a rifle, and game such rabbit, turkey and coyotes, are better suited to a crossbow or compound bow. But in saying that, the crossbow and the compound bow will do the job when hunting larger animals, but more skill is needed. A point to consider is that big game shot with a crossbow or compound bow, will often make a better meal. This is possibly because of the adrenaline factor; the shock to the animal is more severe with a high powered rifle than that of a crossbow or compound bow.