Making Responsible Decisions
Hunters lose public support when they show a lack of respect for game animals. Consider the following examples.
- There is no law that prohibits a hunter from taking a 100-yard shot at a goose. Almost no hunter has the ability to hit a goose at this distance and will likely only wound a goose even if it were hit. Any hunter taking this 100-yard shot shows a lack of respect for this wildlife resource.
- No law prohibits a hunter from using a rifle that has not been properly sighted-in. A rifle that is not properly sighted-in will most likely not shoot where it is aimed and only wound, rather than kill, a big game animal. Responsible hunters will sight-in their rifles before each hunting season.
- No law prohibits a person from hunting who does not have the marksmanship skills necessary to consistently place a bullet in the vital area of a game animal. Responsible hunters will take time to practice shooting from all basic hunting positions. They do not want to wound the animal or lose the animal to a slow death.
- There is no game law that prohibits a person from shooting at the brain of a game animal. The brain of a big game animal is about the size of a baseball. The heart-lung area is about the size of a basketball and thus more easily hit. Hunters who respect the animal resource will take the time to learn about the size and location of vital organs of the game they hunt and how to correctly place a killing shot.
- You watch another hunter stalk a caribou. No law keeps you from killing the animal that the other hunter has been stalking. A responsible hunter respects other hunters and will not deliberately take an animal that another hunter is stalking.
- Hunters sitting in a blind watch as a flight of geese approach in a “V” formation. It is not illegal to shoot at the lead goose. However, respect for the geese means that a hunter will only shoot at the last goose in the nearest part of the “V.” Why? It is very difficult to shoot only the lead goose without some trailing pellets hitting and wounding other geese. If you try to take the last goose and your lead is correct you will be far more likely to take only that goose.
- It is not against the law to shoot a game animal in the rear end. A responsible hunter would never take this shot unless it was to keep a wounded animal from escaping to die a slow, painful death. A shot at the rear end of an animal is not likely to reach the heart or lungs. The rear end shot is also likely to destroy a lot of meat.