Hunters need to stand united

Why do we hunt?

Chances are if you ask multiple hunters that question, you may get various responses.

Fun. Challenge. Food. Exercise. Friendship. Comradery. Tradition. The list may go on and on. We all have our reasons of why we hunt.

But hunters have a little ongoing battle with one another these days. Maybe it’s fueled by social media. Maybe we are watching too many hunting TV shows. Whatever the reason, the battle and conversation over whitetail deer – what to shoot and how many deer to shoot – continues to be a sore subject amongst Pennsylvania hunters.

Let me start with the subject of what to shoot. Your idea of a deer to harvest and mine may not be the same. You may be a meat hunter, while I may be a trophy hunter. Either way, we both share the same woods.

But social media has created this idea that hunters can devalue someone’s kill because “it needed another year” or because “too many does are being shot.” If a hunter has the proper tags, they have a right to take whatever deer they like without being shamed by anyone.

Who cares if a buck is two years old or five years old, if it’s legal for that hunter it can be taken.

It saddens me that our hunting traditions are being tested by men who came from men who stood for hunting traditions. Those men of prior generations shot spike bucks and weren’t shamed into anything by doing it.

Today we have less hunters and more regulations to follow, many of those laws which have improved hunting in Pennsylvania in my opinion. But if hunters refuse to stand united in a sport where the reasoning behind participation varies, fewer people in the future will be exposed to hunting. That’s a sad thought because none of us will be here forever.

I’d like to see the next generations continue what I’ve been able to experience in my lifetime. There’s nothing better than watching a flock of turkeys at sunrise or a whitetail make a scrape.

I refuse to judge a fellow hunter on his/her passion and why they hunt or what they decide to harvest. We all have our reasons – and whether we agree or not, we should find a way to support one another. The future of the sport depends on it.





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