NOTE: This Article is from 2012
As I prep the upcoming site with content and thinking about what new content will be featured on the site, I ran across a great article by another great hunting/outdoor site (WiredToHunt). Specifically Mark Kenyon wrote a great ‘manifesto’ that I believe every individual should read (Virtues of the Responsible Hunter) as it outlines a lot of what I believe about hunting and how it should be treated.
The only improvement would be to move the “Hunter Safety” section first but honestly that is just nitpicking.
But regardless, this is about why I hunt (or at least supposed to be). But again Mark nails it right on the head for me and so here I swipe from his site with a little editing for my own flavor:
- To bring my family together with a common passion
- To become a part of nature for a short time
- To harvest meat for my family
- To carefully manage the populations of deer throughout the country to prevent an overpopulation that could lead to mass starvation, excessive car deer accidents and spread of disease
- I hunt because of the process. The months of hard work, scouting and preparation that all leads up to one heart pounding, nerve shattering moment.
- I hunt because the need to hunt dwells deep inside each one of us, it pumps through our blood and it is part of what defines humanity and the survival of our species
- It brings us back to a primal, natural state of peace and selflessness in nature
- I hunt because it is natural
You see hunting is not about killing. Or else it would not be called hunting. The animals I hunt typically have a much better chance at getting away than I do of getting them. I firmly believe in “fair-chase” hunting and will NOT hunt on a high fence ranch which in my mind equates to shooting fish in a barrel. As I once read, the animals I hunt have more of a chance than the lettuce a vegetarian eats!
Hunting is a part of my heritage. My grandfather hunted and taught me how to shoot both a .22 and a shotgun. I loved my Grandaddy and there is often times I wish he were around to hunt with me now. He taught me safety, how to be quiet, and just to enjoy being out in the woods.
But I also have a side of my family that is VERY against hunting. My aunt probably despises that I hunt. She is a wonderful woman whom I love and cherish very deeply but on this we just disagree. But you know what is amazing about her? She still loves me in spite of it. I understand her points and unfortunately there is some logic to her angst against hunting due to the number of irresponsible hunters that are in the field.
I know that I am doing my part for conservation as well. I used to get Ranger Rick, Audubon and a number of other wildlife magazines from my aunt and my Grandmommie. It was my Grandmommie that taught me to respect the wildlife along with my aunt. I have hand fed deer and squirrels before and still marvel at their beauty. My heart still races just seeing the deer in the field and looking at their grace.
So hunting to me is more than the kill. It is about life and enjoying the creation that God gave us as well as taking care of the creation by proper wildlife management.
Mark said it best “I hunt because it is natural”.