Editor’s Comment: A guest post from James Nelson at Hunting Research to The Prepper Journal. While we know the short answer to the title James provides some interesting insight.
Hunting has a large part to play in American culture and history. It was mainly done as a means to provide the family with food, clothing and shelter. Today, hunting is known as a classic American sport.
However, there are some time-tested hunting tips you should keep in mind. You can read this hunting guide to understand how hunting should be done, and you can get some golden old-school hunting tips too.
Though times have changed, there are good reasons why hunting is still an important skill to take up. Here are my 5 reasons why:
Hunting Helps You to Better Protect Yourself and Your Family
Learning how to handle your weapons is a necessity if you want to master the skill of hunting. Without knowing your weapon well, you will not be able to take a good shot at your hunt. You may end up simply injuring the game or worse still, injuring a person nearby through misfiring.
To build the hunting skill, much time must be put into practice so that you know how to control your weapon. Over time, you will find yourself get better at handling your weapons. Your precision and accuracy of shooting will increase. Same goes to your level of focus and concentration. These are all essential skills for self-defense.
A concealed carry is typically used as a defensive firearm for self-protection. By learning to handle your weapon through building your hunting skills, this can translate to how you handle your concealed carry as well. Should a defensive situation ever arise, you will have the proficiency of using a weapon to defend yourself and your family. You will be able to use your weapon in a way that is safe so as to not injure yourself or the innocent around you.
Hunting Teaches You Adaptability and Observational Skills
There is an increasing disconnect between the people and mother nature in this era. Hunting is one of the bridges to reconnect people to nature. Not just that, it allows us to learn the way of nature. Hunting is not just about the kill. To be successful, you will need to be in tune with nature. This means learning the different patterns of nature. For example, recognizing different trails and habits of animals.
While daily work can become a routine, hunting in the woods will never be a routine because it always presents an element of unpredictability. Each hunt is different in that the weather, foliage around and the signs of game like bedding areas and droppings will change. By putting ourselves out there in the field, we are able to train ourselves to adapt to the ever-changing surroundings. We are placed in a situation where we are challenged to think out of the box.
You really have to rely on your instincts out there in the woods. For example, if you find yourself off your usual trail without a GPS, you will need to rely on the direction of the sun to get back to civilization. If it is at night, you will have to rely on the North Star located at the end of Little Dipper’s handle to help you find north.
Hunting also largely involves being quiet and waiting. This is so that you do not alarm and scare off the prey. You will need to pay close attention to your surroundings like the leaves below your feet and the other foliage around. You will also need to be still until the right moment comes to shoot.
All of these ultimately train our survival instincts as it sharpens our ability to observe the things around us and react sensibly to situations. We also learn the art of being careful and wary of things around. These survival skills are discovered in a way that could never be experienced just by watching shows or listening to the advice of others.
Helps You Hunt Down Animals that are ‘dangerous’
A large part of why hunting is still necessary today is to control the population of wildlife. As we continually crop onto their natural habitats we see more and more interaction with them, especially with deer in North America. And encounters can cause damage to people, property and more. Deer are involved in around 80% of wildlife vehicle collisions resulting in an estimated 200 deaths each year from automotive collisions that involve deer. This excludes the amount of injuries faced. The average cost paid by vehicle owners and insurance companies drives up the cost of insurance. By reducing deer population through sensible hunting management, overall accident levels could be reduced significantly.
Hunting can help to reduce the amount of damage caused to other property as well. Since these animals are adaptable, they move into areas inhabited by humans to find food and shelter. The damage caused to a single property could cost someone up to several thousand dollars.
Hunting Helps Shape Your Mindset
Survival of the fittest is not only about the physical but also the mindset. As you hone your hunting skills, you will find that you will be able to develop your character along the way which changes the way you view things.
Hunting teaches you discipline. Most of the time invested into hunting starts even before the hunt through the preparations. This involves getting your weapon and gears ready, scouting sights, planting food plots and more. There are many preparations to be made leading up to the opportune moment. Discipline is driven into your mind in all of this. Hunting gives you a goal to work towards and teaches you the discipline to stick to it.
Besides, hunting can train your to manage the inevitable disappointments you may face. There are bound to be times where there is failure and you do not manage to catch the prey you were waiting for. Over time, you will learn how to manage your expectations towards each hunt which will help you deal with such setbacks.
Overall, the virtues and qualities from hunting skills do not just stay on the field, but they are translated into the mindset of a survivalist. This can change the way you interact with people and handle life situations.
Hunting Helps Keep You Active
Possessing the skill of hunting comes with an active lifestyle as well. From the pre-hunt, hunters are already actively out and about tending food plots and scouting woods. This contributes to shaping your survival skills much more than living a complacent lifestyle indoors.
Besides, training to use either firearm or bow for hunting keeps hunters active. A lot of time will need to go into training to maintain the proficiency of using the weapon. Drawing back a bow steadily will especially contribute to great muscle endurance, keeping the body fit, and muscle memory, an importing part of shooting anything.
An active lifestyle would lead to a healthier life which is essential for survival as well. Apart from physical activities, game meat is healthy for consumption as well. The meat of wild game is natural and considered healthier than commercialized meat because of the food that they consume. Wild game consumes natural food in the woods, making them healthier. Game meat is generally lean meat as well and has fewer calories and less fat content than domesticated livestock. From venison to elk to birds, all these are low in fat.
Besides physical health, hunting also contributes to a healthier mind. Although preparations can be made, there is no secret formula to succeeding in a hunt. You will need to play by ear when you are on the field. Hence, concentration levels will be sharpened and expanded, keeping the mind active and alert.
Do bear in mind that ‘Hunting’ itself consists of a variety of skill set, and a lot of planning. The reasons discussed above refers to hunting in general, rather than pointing to a specific skill set.
I hope this article gives you the motivation to pick up your weapon of choice tomorrow! Being a ‘great’ prepper takes time and skill, and you can be sure that hunting is one of those skills that can help you get prepared for the worst.
Author bio: I am James Nelson, a survivalist, outdoor and hunting enthusiast. I have dedicated my time and effort to build a website that contains comprehensive information about hunting skills and gear. You can follow me over at Hunting Research.
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