Legal Methods in Deer Hunting

The next time when you are preparing for deer hunting, better make yourself aware of the applicable laws of different states and not only of the deer. Get yourself prepared before you steps in the forest to hunt the deer. At the same time I try to make myself secure with better weapons than those old fashioned bows and arrows.

Many successful hunters never acquire this knowledge, depending solely on luck in their hunting. In a territory where deer are plentiful, this results in their bagging a deer with fair regularity, yet the actual shooting of a deer is only a small part of the enjoyment that a sportsman finds on a hunt. When a man goes into the woods, meets a deer in its own element, outwits the animal and succeeds in killing it with a well-placed shot, his satisfaction will be much greater than in the mere killing of a deer that he has accidentally encountered. To be sure, he can return home and embellish his story, belying the fact that it was more or less an accident that he bagged the animal. He has the deer for proof of his tale, but until he comes to believe the story himself, there will always be a slight feeling of dissatisfaction about that particular hunt.

A very successful hunter once told me that deer hunting was ninety per cent luck and ten per cent good marksmanship. He had hunted for a good many years and should have known what he was talking about. "All that a man needs to do to shoot a deer," he said, "is to be in the right place at the right time and to be able to hit any deer that he sees."

This man believed it was luck that placed him at the right place at the right time, but I am sure that the knowledge that he had unconsciously acquired about the habits of the deer in the territory where he hunted had a lot to do in enabling him to shoot most of his deer. While luck certainly plays an important part in deer hunting, the man who depends entirely on it is very apt to be disappointed at the end of the hunt. The need for hunting knowledge varies with the method used while hunting. It requires little knowledge to shoot a deer in the nighttime with the aid of a light.

This is nothing but butchery of a bewildered defenseless animal. On the other hand, the man who enters the woods armed with a bow and a few arrows, which attempt to outwit an animal in full possession of all its faculties, must have a thorough knowledge of that animal to be successful. I am not in favor of bow-and-arrow hunting for everyone, for, although the hunting arrow is deadly in the hands of an expert, the average hunter is too unfamiliar with the weapon to make clean kills—a necessary part of good sportsmanship.

Quite a few men, with more patience than I possess, bag their deer by continually watching some popular game trail, or crossing, until a deer comes along. There is one man whom I have often met at the same place in the woods where a deer trail crosses a small stream. I think that he is there every morning during the season, from daybreak to midmorning, until he shoots his deer. I would estimate that he has killed ten or twelve deer at that crossing. One year there were very few deer in that immediate area. As far as I knew, there was only one doe that had raised her twin fawns within two miles of that spot. There were plenty of deer in the surrounding country, but for some reason, they seemed to shun that particular area. One day I mentioned the scarcity of deer to him, suggesting that some other crossing might be more productive that year. He merely said, "I've done pretty well here in the past and I reckon that I will give it a few more days before making a change." The next day I met him on the road and he had a nice buck on his car. I had forgotten that his crossing was one that was favored by bucks traveling across country from one herd to another, in search of does.

Although this crossing watching requires more patience than the average hunter possesses, it usually pays off with a deer. Quite a bit of knowledge of the country and of the movement of deer is necessary, yet patience is the most important qualification that a man must have in order to be consistently successful in this type of hunting.

There are fair laws for both the hunters and the animals. So always be on the safer side of the law to avoid any unnecessary trouble that you might face otherwise. Some time you need more patience to continually watch the movements of the deer, which I don't possess. People like the one I met in the forest even after hearing about the scarcity of deer still sits on the same spot waiting for the deer. And for this you need a fair knowledge of the country and the movement of deer can be of good use during the hunting.



By: Mitch Johnson
























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