Hunting is a popular sport and pastime of many Virginians and Pennsylvanians. Being an informed hunter means understanding your surroundings, your gun, and your prey. There are many different actions you can take to protect yourself and others while still having fun and enjoying the beauty of the sport.
Remember these life saving tips for hunters:
- Be certain of your target: Every time you fire at game, you want to make the best shot possible. You need to verify that your target is actually game and not another hunter or non-game animal. Second, take a shot that kills humanely while leaving the most meat. Third, you need to be aware of what's between you and your target, as well as what's beyond your target.
- Maintain control of your emotions: When hunting, it’s easy to become distraught by long periods of waiting, stress, and anxiousness. Keep calm and collected and always focus on the mission at hand.
- Don’t hunt alone: Together, you and your partner can watch out for one another. If either of you should have an accident, the other can assist the injured party or go get help. Without a partner, you're left on your own. Something as simple as a twisted ankle can quickly become a life-threatening situation under the right (or wrong) set of circumstances.
- Wear Hunter Orange: Orange vests, jackets, and hats can differentiate you from an animal in the eyes of other hunters while still maintaining your stealth amongst game.
- Practice gun safety: Treat every firearm as if it’s loaded at all times. Also, understand your weapon and how it works. Practice using your firearm at a shooting range or somewhere else that is considered safe before taking it out hunting.
- Treestand knowledge: Be sure to use fall restraints and harnesses when you're using a tree stand. In general, a fall restraint tethers a hunter to the tree, not the treestand. It's important to wear the restraints from when you begin your climb to the moment when you're safely back on the ground again.
- Understand the state you are hunting in: Look online for information regarding hunting in your state. Know that some people are required to carry a license and some are exempt and remember it’s important since every state has different rules and regulations. Also, ignorance of the law is not an excuse to a game warden.
Keeping these tips in mind will add awareness to your overall hunting knowledge and will create a safer experience for you and your friends. Happy hunting, and remember these life saving tips for hunters!
More Information on Hunter Safety