Youth’s shot nabs buck
Chances are, Kody Nehl will remember Saturday for the rest of his life.
Kody, an 8-year old Tonganoxie boy, went deer hunting with his father, Jess Nehl. And he came home with a 10-point buck he shot himself.
Kody is the son of Jenny and Matt Kessler, Tonganoxie, and Jess and Billie Nehl, rural McLouth.
"I was excited, and I didn't know if I hit the deer or not," Kody said.
But he'd made a sound shot. And then he made another one.
Jess Nehl described the scene.
"The buck came in following a doe and the first shot was a pretty good shot," Jess said. "It ran a ways, and Kody shot it again and it pretty much fell over."
The two were in a deer stand about 16 feet off the ground near Valley Falls. The temperature was in the mid-20s, cool enough to see your breath. It was the fourth day of Kansas firearms deer season. The father and son had been in the stand only 15 minutes when Kody got his shot.
"He'd been wanting to get one for a while," Jess said. "We went Wednesday morning and saw two bucks and six does. It was pretty cold that morning and we didn't stay in the stand that long."
Earlier this fall, during deer hunting season for youths, Kody passed up taking a shot at a smaller buck.
"He wanted to wait and get a bigger one," Jess said. "It worked out pretty good."
Jess said the deer was about 4 1/2 years old and when field dressed weighed about 175 pounds.
On the way to Valley Falls, Jess said he realized he'd left his knife at home -- a superstitious indication that Kody would get a deer.
So after Kody shot the deer, Jess called his father, Jim Nehl, Tonganoxie, who took a knife to them. A game warden also helped by hauling the deer in the back of his truck to Jess's truck about 400 yards away. Jess and Kody field dressed the deer and brought it to Tonganoxie where Kody could show off his trophy.
Kody, who is a second-grader at Genesis Christian Academy, said hunting is his favorite thing to do.
"You never know when something is going to come out in the field," Kody said.
And Kody admitted he's good at it.
"I'm a really good shot," Kody said. "When I was 3, I first got a BB gun and I just kind of went up to a pellet gun, then to a 22 and then I shot the deer with a 30-30."
And he's also handy with a shotgun, which he'll use when his father takes him goose and duck hunting.
While Kody plans to take a hunter safety class, he's learning now from his dad.
"He teaches me a lot of things about hunter safety," Kody said.