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Thread: youth Hunting safety

  1. #1
    Member aksportsmen's Avatar
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    Default youth Hunting safety

    i found this article surfing the web. http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/26171830/#storyContinued
    figured it would be good for discussion on the board. while im a younger hunter at 23 i think this is a very important issue. i know my old man did one hell of a job teaching me hunter saftey and ethics. i was not much older then this kid when i started going out chasing rabbits and grouse on my own. so whats your opions on the matter?

  2. #2

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    this was a tragedy and prayers go out to the family of the deceased. that said, it doesn't make sense to draft new law based on a very isolated incident, so i'm not in favor of raising the minimum age for hunting. there are plenty of 30-something hunters out there who need a safety refresher just as much as any kid. but, compared to most activities with some presence of risk, hunting is a relatively safe endeavor.

    this incident really amplifies the need for all of us to be SURE of our target, and the landscape behind it, before we pull the trigger.

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    Member pike_palace's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mdhunter View Post
    this was a tragedy and prayers go out to the family of the deceased. that said, it doesn't make sense to draft new law based on a very isolated incident, so i'm not in favor of raising the minimum age for hunting. there are plenty of 30-something hunters out there who need a safety refresher just as much as any kid. but, compared to most activities with some presence of risk, hunting is a relatively safe endeavor.

    this incident really amplifies the need for all of us to be SURE of our target, and the landscape behind it, before we pull the trigger.

    I agree, its not fair to turn someones tragedy into the some anti-youth hunters fortune.
    "Ya can't stop a bad guy with a middle finger and a bag of quarters!!!!"- Ted Nugent.

  4. #4
    Member tboehm's Avatar
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    Default I've taught mine

    I don't know that I would allow a 14 year old by themselves. I trust mine more than some older hunters but too many things can happen and I would be more worried about their safety. Sad story.

  5. #5
    Member COtoAK's Avatar
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    Default Hunting and Hiking Community...

    Quote Originally Posted by tboehm View Post
    I don't know that I would allow a 14 year old by themselves. I trust mine more than some older hunters but too many things can happen and I would be more worried about their safety. Sad story.
    You need to understand the whole situation, though.
    The 14 year old boy was on a hunt with his dad and another family member. He was out there to hunt for bears.

    Now... it doesn't make sense to me that he didn't have a scope or binos to make a full determination what exactly was moving.

    I hate to admit this, but I am going to because I'd like to believe that I am familiar with both sides of this situation.

    The hiking community is a community of it's own. Before I did my first hunt, I was very much a hiking and climbing 'snob'. They do what they want to do, when they want to do it, make the mountain side immediately and do what it takes. Not all hikers are this way, of course, but a good handful are. I have had climbing partners drop their packs and run off the trail just to make the summit, breaking most rules of backpacking, but it didn't matter because they made that summit and that was an additional mountain that they can have checked off their list. I have seen hikers litter, loiter, and completely disrespect the environment, yet when it comes to a situation like this, it's funny how the hiking community binds and then fights. There have been that small handful of others, though, that do what they can for said trails and have a respect for the environment.

    Now... from the hunting side of it. I have 2 boys that are upcoming. Just this past week, my husband and I have decided that it's time to send our older son to hunter education courses, purchase a rifle for him, and take him on a possilbe fly out caribou hunt next year.
    I have every intention on allowing all our children to have the opportunity to learn young and hunt at the age that we, as parents, deem appropriate. That point is coming very quickly for our oldest.
    He's already shot his first grouse with a BB gun.
    We made the boys learn how to shoot first with no scopes and then this summer we added scopes to their BB guns. Before they take their BB guns out, they have to explain to us what they are doing, who they are going with, which adult will be outside with them, and remind us of all that rules (like their safety that's on) before they are allowed to take the guns out.
    I suppose what's different is that we have property that they can go out and shoot at things on.
    You better believe it that by the age of 14, both of our boys will be skilled enough to understand how to hunt mostly on their own, but still hunting with The Husband and myself or both.

    This very topic came up, though, during mine and my husband's recent hunt and I asked him that if our son is 16 or 17 and wants to go hunting, are we going to allow him to do it on his own with his friends?
    My husband had an excellent answer.
    He said that it depends on who his friends are, how much we trust them, and how well we know about their skill and ability. Then he admitted that he went out hunting with his best friend at the age of 17 and we both smilied at each other.

    So... there you have it.
    These hikers are going to move and press for more laws because that's just the way that they are.
    This is an unfortunate thing for this young hunter. Had it been a bear, it would have been a trophy, wouldn't it have been?
    We plan to teach our children young so that when they are becoming, they, too, can hunt on their own.
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  6. #6
    Member aksportsmen's Avatar
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    personaly my dad started me off when i was 6 or 7 started with me off with a bb gun wnet so far as to make me a bb catcher so i could plink at paper targets in my back yard. took a nra gun safety course at 8. took me wiht him ofr my first moose hunt at 10. carried my bb gun got a grouse the first time out and was hooked. started going solo with the shotgun for rabbits at 14. started sittign by myself for moose at 16. so for me it really depends on when u start them. alaska is a gun culture so most of us that grew up here have had alot of expose to guns and gun safety. i know when i have kids i will start them at a young age and instill the same values my dad with me.

  7. #7

    Default Good Thoughts by All

    Good thoughts posted so far. In terms of when a kid is ready to hunt on their own, i think it's different for every kid based on their training, their familiarity with firearms and being in the woods, and the amount of time they spend in hunting environments with adult hunters before that point.

    I was fortunate to grow up in Alaska during the 60s, when it seemed like everyone hunted! My Mom was Eskimo and my Dad was from Maine, and had been hunting since he was a boy, so it was very natural that I would be given the opportunity to hunt and shoot at a young age. I started going on week-long hunting trips with my dad when I was 4, and got my first .22 when I was 6 - I earned the right to get that .22 (for Christmas) by carrying a toy gun in the field for two years, showing my father that I understood what gun safety was.

    I was allowed to carry the .22 unloaded starting when I was 6, and when we would come across ptarmigan or rabbits, I was allowed to load up and shoot. After 1 fall of that, at the age of 7 I was allowed to start carrying my .22 loaded. I also started hunting alone at this time, although this was just near our home (we lived about a mile from the nearest house) with our Crosman BB gun. At 9, I graduated to hunting for big game, carrying a Ruger .44 Magnum Carbine, and was fortunate to shoot my first caribou when I was 11.

    You'd be surprised what kids can grasp and retain at a young age, if they really want to. But, it does take time spent in the field with adults, to train and reinforce the message until it's ingrained. I really wanted the chance to own and carry my own rifle, so even though I was 4 and 5, I took those hunts carrying my toy rifle pretty seriously. I also knew, that once I started using a real gun, it would only take one case of bad judgement to have the privilege taken away.

    I think a big part of the challenge nowadays is that kids have shorter attention spans for outdoor activities, due to TV, videl games and other things that offer instant gratification. Patience is something we seem to be losing, not sure what to do about that.

  8. #8
    Member pike_palace's Avatar
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    Live and learn.
    "Ya can't stop a bad guy with a middle finger and a bag of quarters!!!!"- Ted Nugent.

  9. #9
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    Default Limited opportunities for the maximum benefit of all Alaskan Hunters

    Teaching safety on hunting in Alaska is not the same as fire arms safety. Safe hunting in Alaska involves knowing the regulations, how to read them, how to handle the weapon safely, how to avoid becoming a prey animal, driver's education, ATV safety, boating safety, identification of sub-legal and legal animals, a fine degree of navigational skill to identify unit boundaries, advanced mechanical skills, and a whole list of other skills to be a reasonably successful and safe hunter. When should you start, day one. The most important lesson, always leave a hunt plan with someone who has the ability to save you.

    Personally I am disappointed that the State of Alaska and the Department of Fish and Game are not doing more to improve access for hunters. There is no reason why residents should have to become survival experts and independently wealthy to hunt in Alaska. If anything the ADF&G should offer current herd information to help hunters be more successful. The State should do more to increase access by land to areas already accessible sans regulations. The Dalton Highway 10 mile corridor, restricts access to the central arctic herd to less than one percent of the people in Alaska. The Western herd is only accessible by air. Some herds are only accessible by permit others by drawing. All of this regulation simply limits all hunters especially the young and old by making what should be a simple hunting trip cost prohibitive or dangerous to attempt.

    We can do better to manage the resources for the maximum benefit of all Alaskans. It starts with opening access and educating the young about the benefits of hunting.

  10. #10
    Member COtoAK's Avatar
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    Joe,

    Funny that you posted about this.

    Recently in an article in the newspaper, they stated that there will be workers working on surveying for the new pipeline and if there are hunters in the area, they need to be aware that there will be workers out there and the hunters will need to *help and assist* where needed for the new pipeline.

    Don't get me wrong... I want the new pipeline, but not to assist with it during the middle of my hunt.
    Your post reminded me of that article.


    About reading regulations... if my kids can't read it, my husband or myself will read it for them and explain the rules and regs for the area.
    Simple. Why would that be so hard for a 14 year old? I am quite sure that the required reading for a junior high student is far more difficult than the State of AK Hunting Regulations.
    Lurker.

  11. #11

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    Horrible accident but as far as age restrictions go. The state has no right to tell a parent when his child can or can not hunt. That is bogus and outlandish. This is most definatly the kids AND parents fault. Was I big game hunting at age 14 yes. Was I all alone no. I had gone through hunter and bowhunter ed with flying colors because it is mostly common sence. I learned how to be safe by my fathers actions and his keen eye. What a rough lesson for that young guy and what a tragic accident. It could all have been avoided with common sence.




    Are you proposing that alaska drops the 5 mile dalton highway corridor? Give me a break that is one of the worst idea's I have heard in a while. As I do not hunt up there very often I do so for a good reason. For not much more money I can fly out and hunt where there is more bou and less people. There are not many carabou there on the haul road at times and it is one of the VERY FEW places archers can go to hunt carabou without the mega poppers roaming abound. Besides how easy is it to shoot a carabou that you have spotted from the road? WAY TO EASY every stalk on carabou will result you bieng within 100 yards. Heck you can walk within 150 of them before they decide that you are to close.

  12. #12

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    This is a personal example of how important safety is in hunting. I grew up hunting. I hunted grouse by myself since 5th grade and used to bring back bunches of them. I was taught safety and not to shoot unless you knew what you were shooting at.

    I went hunting with my Dad when I was 15. He parked me on a hillside and went around to a valley. He was hunting down it and I was waiting on the other end in case he drove any moose ahead of him. After sitting there for an hour or so I noticed movement in the valley and something brown moving behind the bushes. I had no binocs and open sights on my 94 winchester. I got ready and lined up on an open spot in front of where the moose was heading. I had the gun cocked and my finger on the trigger when my Dad stepped out of the open right into my sights. It shocked me and still shakes me up today when I think about it.

    I tell that story to my son when talking about hunting safety.

    But I still don't think they should raise the hunting age...we all need to think and talk about safety.
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