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Parts 7-8 – Top Ten things Hunters Should Know

Top 10 Things Hunters should know


Items 7-8


This installment will cover items 7-8; Hunting and Game Laws, and How properly clean and dress your animal.

Part 7: Hunting and Game Laws

           While this may seem simple, for hunters who travel from one state to another, or even those who hunt in several different game zones within the same state. Knowing the law is critical to ethical and legal hunting. For example, in my home state of South Carolina we have six different game zones and for many the season start dates, the bag limits and the weapon restrictions are different from one to the next. Knowing this will avoid a lot of heart ache and possibly fines or worse.

Fortunately every state Department of Natural Resources (DNR) have websites that have their state laws and season spelled out clearly. Some even have detailed maps that show in minute detail where the boarders are and the different season. Identifying marks etc. In many states these seasons can change from year to year, while others are so rooted in tradition they aren’t likely to change. But knowing this will help a lot of hunters and keep them from breaking laws.

Secondly, if you are not sure, ask. Game wardens, and DNR officers are more than willing to answer simple questions about seasons and dates, and bag limits. Taking the time to inquire is reassuring and offer piece of mind.


Part 6: How to Clean and Dress your Animal

Sadly, many hunters today have never cleaned their kill. Be it, doves rabbits, or deer. For a fee, most processors will clean your animal for you. While this is not my soapbox against this method of field care, I do believe its important o know in advance how to care for your quarry. A case in point that highlights this comes from a dear friend of mine who had never cleaned a single deer her harvested. With the processor a mere four miles from his hunt camp, he never saw the need.

As fate would have it, he found himself on an unguided elk hunt in Colorado where he killed a nice bull elk. I will never forget the phone call that day – and after all of the congratulations, came the question; “I have no idea what to do now, can you walk me through cleaning this thing” So for the next three hours over the phone, I walked him through cleaning an elk on the side of a mountain in Colorado. I would offer some instruction, he would hang up and complete that task and call back. – he got it done, and now he cleans all of his deer.

Field dressing ducks, rabbits and squirrels will keep them fresh longer and preserve a fine table fare. Now I will admit, I have no idea how to butcher an animal, but peeling the hide, and removing the ‘insides’ is something that is always done by me. As a personal note, I also feel that if I can take that animals life, I owe it to them to properly care for the carcass.

There are many books and videos available to show you how to quickly and cleanly clean and care for your hard earned trophy. As a hunter, you owe it to yourself to learn this skill, you never know when you will be dependent upon it.