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6 Reasons To Take Your Child Hunting


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6 Reasons To Take Your Child Hunting

Not every community supports hunters, and many people grow up without any exposure to the sport outside of media. Popular culture has tried to vilify hunters (think Bambi), and groups like the Humane Society of the United States use their financial reserves to wage war on the sport at every turn. If their message becomes the only voice that people who don’t hunt hear, then the future is bleak. We’re only one generation of voters away from losing the rights we’ve worked so hard to preserve. If that happens, one of the biggest losers will be wildlife.

https://www.nrafamily.org/articles/2021/1/10/6-reasons-to-take-your-child-hunting/?utm_source=newsletter&utm_medium=insider&utm_campaign=0121

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It’s funny how kids can be, started both my boys the same way and age. Oldest loves to hunt . youngest could care less about it. Youngest loves venison though,  never turns it down. 

Edited by rob-c
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12 hours ago, First-light said:

This is what you get in return, that smile!!!!!!

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So that was my Daughter this year opening day. This other photo is a friends son I mentored back in 2011. He was 14 and shot this button buck on his second sit ever. He hunted with me for the next 7 years then moved out west. He hunts Elk, deer and such. The cycle continues. Get them involved and let it play out. 

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21 hours ago, rob-c said:

It’s funny how kids can be, started both my boys the same way and age. Oldest loves to hunt . youngest could care less about it. Youngest loves venison though,  never turns it down. 

Same with us. Youngest daughter is an avid deer archery and gun hunter, oldest daughter wants nothing to do with it. Everyone was here for Thanksgiving and amid all the deer hunting talk, oldest asked if we were sure she wasn’t adopted, lol.

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Guys it can’t stop at our kids. We need to invite the neighbor kids, family friends kids, etc etc 

Even simple things like shooting, not only invite the kid but their siblings and parents if they don’t shoot. It’s what I do. We’d expose alot more people this way 

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I am very passionate about the kids here are just a few pics of some cool hunts. Some were neighbors, girl with cap was a girl who’s mom approached me just to take her, friends kids, my kids, etc. The girl shooting the pistol was extremely against firearms. She says now it’s her favorite thing. The little boy with bow is from the city. His first time shooting anything. 50BA52A2-DED3-4741-A5E9-3F6F55C5F56A.thumb.jpeg.786487fb2614ea28e0bb6c31d0e848cb.jpeg

Our future

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31 minutes ago, Foggy Mountain said:

I am very passionate about the kids here are just a few pics of some cool hunts. Some were neighbors, girl with cap was a girl who’s mom approached me just to take her, friends kids, my kids, etc. The girl shooting the pistol was extremely against firearms. She says now it’s her favorite thing. The little boy with bow is from the city. His first time shooting anything. 50BA52A2-DED3-4741-A5E9-3F6F55C5F56A.thumb.jpeg.786487fb2614ea28e0bb6c31d0e848cb.jpeg

Our future

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How wonderful. What we get back is ten-fold the excitement of shooting our own deer, turkey or pheasant!

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I love seeing all those photos of smiling faces! It's not always like that with kids, they can be a chore. Sometimes conditions get the better of them, and you've got to exercise patience. Taking a kid out means sacrificing some of what you might want to do, coming home early or flipping the script if things go south.  But man, the payoff...

We built an elevated box blind on one property this year specifically to hunt with kids in the late season, and I always put up three or four ground blinds, even though I personally don't hunt in them. My own daughter doesn't hunt, but my buddies' kids do, and it's been a hoot. You've got to pay it forward.

Edited by knehrke
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9 minutes ago, knehrke said:

I love seeing all those photos of smiling faces! It's not always like that with kids, they can be a chore. Sometimes conditions get the better of them, and you've got to exercise patience. Taking a kid out means sacrificing some of what you might want to do, coming home early or flipping the script if things go south.  But man, the payoff...

 

Very good points.  I think many parents miss out on having their kids become hunters because they lack patience, or are so into their own hunting that they don't want to sacrifice any of their own hunting time.  I also think taking them only on deer hunts is not always the best way to keep them interested in hunting.  Unless you hunt some prime spots where you will see deer at every sit deer hunting can be boring and often uncomfortable for kids due to cold and bad weather.  Taking them out for something like squirrels where the action can typically be much better will keep them way more interested.

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8 hours ago, steve863 said:

Very good points.  I think many parents miss out on having their kids become hunters because they lack patience, or are so into their own hunting that they don't want to sacrifice any of their own hunting time.  I also think taking them only on deer hunts is not always the best way to keep them interested in hunting.  Unless you hunt some prime spots where you will see deer at every sit deer hunting can be boring and often uncomfortable for kids due to cold and bad weather.  Taking them out for something like squirrels where the action can typically be much better will keep them way more interested.

After Teddi (Theadora) shot her deer opening morning we still hunted. We sat on a hill side that afternoon and had some doe come very close. We both had doe permits but we didn't need the meat. She was just as happy sitting there watching the deer as she was before she shot her buck. We left Sunday afternoon and I gave her the option of sleeping in. She said no way I want to be out there. Again we saw deer. As I said before we hit the bridges headed to Long Island she asked if I could make a U-Turn and go back! She is hooked for sure. DJ Taxidermy asked if I wanted the mount back for Christmas (he was willing to prioritize Teddi's deer) but I said no. Every thing comes so quick these days this is something I waited for when I wanted a deer mounted so would she. Can't wait for Turkey season!

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Any advice on how old before you start bringing them out? My daughter will be 3 this year so I know I still have some time but was just curious. 

Also, when first bringing them out, do you just have them sit with you to gauge there interest before fully investing in it for them just incase it turns out to be something they dont want to pursue? 

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HuntENY92 my daughters started going early. My oldest would sit on my shoulders and work hounds by 2. Caught her first fish 3 days before her 2nd birthday. Her younger sister believe it or not was only 15 months old. Obviously I had to cast for her. 
My kids would come trapping riding a jet sled around 2 as well. 
Actively hunting lots depends on what it is and how they are. Don’t bring em on a deer hunt and make them sit hours and hours. My buddy’s son though has come with us doing about everything including waterfowl since age 4. 
Just start involving the child and let them progress at their own pace. 
The kid could definitely panfish now. Springtime bring them along if you pick mushrooms or any type foraging. Point out tracks. Show old rubs, etc. 

Bring them on an easy scout session. Let them hear early morning turkey gobble. Set up a target, put big balloons on it and start them with proper form using a string bow, if you don’t understand ask me, and set them up close. When they break balloon make a big deal over it. Remember to check eye dominance To determine if they shoot lefty or righty. . There are tests for little kids. I can explain that too when you’re ready. 
As mentioned bring them squirrel hunting. So what if they fidget and blow your shot. You could carry in a blind set it up in the dark or the night before to conceal any of the movement. 
 

I could go on but by three I’d have already started introducing aspects to them. Pan fishing, ice fishing, scouting, picking berries, scouting, shooting a bow, learning to cast a rod, helping train a dog, listening for turkey, watching a field mid summer for deer, coming along on a quick trap line check, cleaning the dog runs, learning basic steps as long as they want while you make arrows, tie flies, reload. etc etc etc but don’t expect them to do more than watch in passing. Perhaps you could tie flies at the kitchen table while the kid has his cookies and milk, I’d bet he’d at least watch some, involve them and remember everything we do effects our kids. Tv and video games are time wasters. Limit that, increase time with the kid at their pace. Be careful never to overdue anything. If you need any help or ideas please ask. I’d be happy to help. The age you’re recommending is a great age. Everything is so new. Now get your bluegill rods and camera ready to start making memories you’ll look back on years later. It’s almost spring. Matter of fact my oldest daughter I mentioned caught her first fish three days before her 2nd birthday. Her birthday is mid March. 
 

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The unbridled joy in some of these photos is fantastic.

The 2nd post about 5 great youth hunts gives some great advice on getting young folks started.

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4 hours ago, huntWNY92 said:

Any advice on how old before you start bringing them out? My daughter will be 3 this year so I know I still have some time but was just curious. 

Also, when first bringing them out, do you just have them sit with you to gauge there interest before fully investing in it for them just incase it turns out to be something they dont want to pursue? 

What we did with our boys is started with just shooting. We set up a shooting gallery - clay pigeons , balloons  printed paper targets of animals that they would shoot with the BB gun. Then bought  youth bows and purchased a couple extra  3-d targets-   fox & a porcupine  to go with our deer and turkey . And don’t forget the balloons , and set up a little course with those . Our local gun club put on youth shooting days and we went to those and always brought the boys to shoot 3-d and the paper league. The best time we ever had was when we went to the R-100 shoot they absolutely had a blast shooting all the different  3-d targets . 
 

When my dad was alive he would take one of the boys and I the other, we would let them have their own Turkey calls to use and they would carry their bow or BB gun on hunts with us. We didn’t kill many animals  but it was fun and we always did breakfast after the morning hunt so we could compare notes about the hunt . We started the boys at about 6-7 shooting BB gun’s then at 8- 9 we bought them archery gear. The biggest hurdle with keeping  kids involved with hunting is when they get into high school and other activities take over. Both my boys were 3 sport athletes and very involved in extra curricular  activity’s so there wasn’t much time for them to hunt. My youngest drifted away from hunting but still likes to go shoot the guns with us . Good luck and remember keep it fun. 

Edited by rob-c
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Forgot to mention something. The balloons are cool, after a bit with archery gear I’ve done it but I bet it’d work with a BB gun too, I take powder, corn starch, even used chalk line chalk but put it in pill bottle. Stretched a balloon mouth over top. Tapped some powder in and blew up balloon. When they hit it now you see an explosion. With chalk line, I don’t like it as much but you got colors. One word of warning. Make sure you do it somewhere you don’t mind there being the powder dust or you’ll need to clean it up. It’s a fun thing to do and as time passes adds more for them to look forward too

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