Why do I hunt? BDN readers share their typically emotional ideas — Outside — Bangor Every day Information — BDN Maine

Why do I hunt? BDN readers share their often emotional thoughts — Outdoors — Bangor Daily News — BDN Maine

John Holyoke | BDN

John Holyoke | BDN

Why can we hunt? For a lot of, searching supplies us the prospect to spend time afield with shut associates, each two-legged and four-legged. Right here, Pete Warner (left) and Chris Lander chicken hunt with Teddy, an English cocker spaniel.

A long time in the past, the reply to the query “Why do I hunt?” was seemingly extra easy than it’s at the moment. Those that did hunt and did so efficiently, supplied meals that their households would savor over the approaching months. Those that didn’t? Nicely they needed to discover different methods of placing protein on the desk.

These days, we will simply take a drive to the grocery store and replenish on every kind of meals. Fish, fowl and livestock is well obtained, and the important position of the hunter-gatherer has dimmed.

Nonetheless, many people nonetheless select to hunt. A few weeks again, I examined the explanations I’m a hunter and wrote about a few of the issues I take pleasure in about searching. Then I challenged BDN readers to consider the query for themselves and to ship alongside a response: Why do you hunt?

A number of individuals took the time to reply. Be forewarned, nevertheless: Some didn’t truly reply the query I posed. And never everyone who responded cared for the query or for the explanations I highlighted for my very own participation within the exercise.

Right here, edited for house and elegance, are a number of of your solutions.

From Warren D. Southworth, Sr.: Sure, I hunt for the meat. Deer or not often, moose. There isn’t any different prefer it. Most of those that say it’s gamey or powerful have by no means eaten prime, correctly cared for, knowledgeably ready venison. It’s additionally meat with just about no ldl cholesterol. Grouse and sure geese are additionally prime fare. I care little for woodcock, wild turkey or bear, however then I don’t hunt them. Granted, if I calculated the fee/pound of the wild recreation I eat, I’d in all probability be cash forward if I shopped on the native grocery store. However that’s not the purpose, is it?

Apart from custom and meals, then, what’s the level? The drive to hunt, I imagine, lies deep inside me. It resides on the subcellular stage, down there within the genome someplace. I’m a predator, pure and easy. I might deny it, I suppose, however skilled wildlife administration and legality make it attainable for me not solely to just accept it but additionally to pursue it. “Wait!” you say, “if the killing reviles you, then why not hunt with a digital camera?” Right here’s why. Carrying a digital camera afield shouldn’t be searching. The digital camera makes me solely an observer, not a hunter. Until I carry the gun or the bow (and even the spear, I suppose), I don’t expertise the strain which exists between predator and prey, and that’s what I search, a deeper understanding of who and what I’m and the way I relate to different species on this planet. Many Native American cultures, in actual fact, believed that when a person took up weapons to hunt, he truly hunted himself. I perceive that notion. I settle for that a part of me.

From Robin Emery: You can do all the issues in your article with a digital camera, apart from the meat half.

From Karen Ellis: It is a nice query however, as you say, exhausting to explain to others. I’m one of many few however rising numbers of feminine hunters. I grew up in a household that hunted deer, grouse and rabbits. I’ve three brothers so I didn’t become involved in searching till I used to be an grownup. I sat again and took all of the data in from my father and brothers experiences. My husband and I introduced up our son to like the outside and searching in addition to fishing is an enormous a part of what we take pleasure in. I made a decision I needed to check out searching to see what it was all about.

My first morning out on opening day in 2012, I shot my first buck. I used to be hooked. It has turn out to be such a mixture of issues for me. One of the best a part of it’s strolling via the woods by your self or with household and taking within the nature round you. The sounds you hear. The stuff you see. You by no means know what the journey that day goes to deliver. I discover it stress-free and so peaceable. It’s nice train. I’ve such nice recollections searching with my son. A solution to regroup from my day and if I’m fortunate I’ll get the chance to reap a deer. As you may see I might go on and on about why I hunt as a result of it has turn out to be such an enormous a part of my life. A few of my finest recollections are out within the woods, and I look ahead to making extra annually.

From Al Larson: Some years in the past, I hunted with rifle, shotgun and bow. Didn’t have loads of luck, nevertheless it received me out on frosty mornings in lovely locations. Now my searching is completed with a digital camera. Such as you, I’ve seen sudden critters within the woods, marten, fox, moose, porkys, bear, bobcat. And farther afield, musk ox, reindeer, grizzlies, and an Arctic fox. My digital camera has “shot” many, many birds too.

However it’s the being exterior and seeing fantastic locations that makes it nice. I don’t have to kill one thing to have lasting recollections. There are occasions when getting the right photograph shot is more durable than the right rifle shot. So no matter drives us on the market, all of us want to guard the wild locations. As soon as the pavement goes in, the world is misplaced. Each outdoorsman ought to work to guard the wildlands all of us love.

From Thomas D. Corridor: Why do I help searching?

I don’t hunt, however I very a lot help searching and people who need to hunt.

Opposite to the picture that some need to painting, at the moment’s hunters are a few of the most ardent environmentalists that I’ve ever encountered. Due to their ardour for the exercise, they, way over others, need to protect our woodlands and wilderness areas. They need for the herds to be wholesome, for the waters to be clear and unobstructed in order that fish might thrive. They imagine the biologists, and subscribe to the ruling and recommendation that wildlife officers dispense. Hunters need the pure fantastic thing about this earth to be perpetually preserved.

Why? For a similar explanation why I need our outdoor to stay pure! I treasure these occasions once I can sit alone within the woods, taking within the cool air, the rustling timber and that uncommon woodlands animal. I emerge from the woods a greater particular person, for the time spent in reflecting, and for the acceptance of how I’ve been blessed.

And even then, there are the easy pleasures of life that I discover in being an outdoorsman; the pleasures that hunters discover as nicely. Nothing tastes pretty much as good as that cup of espresso from a thermos, or the banquet present in a sandwich, all consumed whereas sitting in majesty on the desk of a pine stump. Have you ever ever sat via a dawn and seen the small print of life emerge round you? Have you ever ever sat via a sundown, and acknowledged the purple, orange and golden colours because the promise for a brand new day?

And although I’ve by no means hunted an animal, I can think about the satisfaction of the reward for endurance, for the diligence in ready via the chilly hours, for the humility of harvesting a God-given being and for celebrating the expertise in complete.

We have to do higher. We have to preserve our surroundings clear and ever contemporary. We have to preserve our wildlife wholesome. Hunters imagine this. That’s why I help searching.

From Robert Woodbury: That is very emotional for me as a result of I’m now bodily unable to hunt. And it hurts. Over a quarter-century of diabetes has taken away the sensation in my legs from the knees down and I can’t stroll on uneven floor with out help. First, I used to be by no means a deer hunter. I don’t know why. My complete prolonged household hunts/hunted deer. All people. C’mon. Woodburys are from Patten.

Fowl searching was my ardour. I didn’t hunt to kill birds (first shot all the time excessive — second shot proper on), though a well-prepared grouse or woodcock was all the time a welcome delicacy at our desk.

I hunted as a result of I all the time walked behind the canine handler to watched the 2 work collectively. Magnificent. I hunted for lunch subsequent to an empty stone basis with an apple tree close by with its pungent, rotting odor including taste to the ambiance. I hunted as a result of being within the woods, surrounded by nature’s magnificence cleansed the soul and made me complete once more, in a position to deal with the work-a-day capabilities in a extra calm, steady and cheap method. However largely I hunted due to the corporate I stored. Fowl hunters are searching primarily for a similar causes. For lack of a greater phrase, all of us have the identical “karma.” We will speak to one another and by no means say a phrase out loud.

I blamed my current non-hunting state of affairs. I don’t blame my age as a result of there are loads of 80-year-olds, female and male, nonetheless barging their approach via alders and raspberry thickets following a canine that gained’t take “I can’t” for a solution. There may be an outdated tune that tells of the day the music died. A number of years in the past, I misplaced 4 chicken searching buddies in the identical 12 months, women and men who have been cherished companions. I cried. I offered my weapons.

From Ruth Nadelhaft: I learn your column in at the moment’s paper — twice. I seen that some key components of searching have been lacking: Weapons, for instance. Your enjoyment of comradeship, nature, glimpses of untamed animals supply compelling causes for spending time with associates or by your self within the woods. However leaving out the aim of searching is like describing {golfing} with no point out of golf equipment, balls and scoring. I assume an account of {golfing} would hardly cease at an outline of inexperienced lawns, pleasant dialog, and rides in carts. The purpose of searching is searching. Why go to such lengths to keep away from saying that? You’re in Maine, you’re getting paid to jot down a column about outside life in a tradition that respects, even valorizes, searching. Are you traipsing alongside within the woods together with your pocket book? Taking photos together with your cellphone? Are you carrying a gun? Is anybody carrying a gun?

You arrange this column as a long-delayed consideration of the “actual” query: Why do I hunt? Nicely, why do you? What’s totally different about searching versus “simply” spending a weekend within the woods with good associates? This column may need been a primary draft. I look ahead to the following model.

From Dan Crocker: Loved your piece this morning, and most of my logical, rational causes for searching are the identical as these you highlighted. And such as you, I select to hunt extra for the intrinsic worth of being within the woods, whether or not with associates or alone. I’ve posted fairly just a few tales to my weblog concerning the bonds we construct within the shared experiences within the woods, and that’s maybe the best motivator.

However I additionally discover great solace within the woods alone, and infrequently retreat there when issues in the true world get tense in order that I can loosen up, recharge, and refocus. Maybe essentially the most vital instance of that’s my weblog publish about just a few hours I spent in a tree stand late afternoon on Sept. 11, 2001.


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