A comparison of compound bow and crossbow osseous trauma
File, Casey Lynn
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The present research examined the effects of compound bows and crossbows on the remains of Sus scrofa and Odocoileus virginianus. Isolated pig heads and white-tailed deer necks were impacted by three forms of arrow heads: the broad-head tip, conical field-tip, and bullet field-tip from both the compound bow and the crossbow. The structural design of the arrowheads was examined to understand their level of impact, as well as, the velocities of the compound bow and crossbow were calculated and compared. The total number of impact marks for the experiment was 55. It was hypothesized that the compound bow would have a greater extent of trauma to bone than the crossbow due to the higher velocity created from a longer power stroke. It was also hypothesized that the broad-head arrow tip will create larger fracture patterns on bone due to the three-blade-prong design compared to the oval shape of both the conical field-tip and bullet field-tip. Through the use of one-way ANOVA and Pearson’s Chi-Square, the results show no direct correlation between the difference in the type of weapon used or the arrow tip used. The results show the vast majority of impacts are penetration with shapes that roughly resemble the cross-section of the type of tip used. The results, however, did not support both hypotheses due to the limited number of impact marks and sample size of the experiment. Further experiments are required to assess the extent to which it is possible to distinguish between arrow related osseous trauma.