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Sun Dec 2, 2012, 02:10 PM

Hunter numbers up, reversing two decades of downward trend.

http://www.fws.gov/midwest/News/release.cfm?rid=569

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service released data showing a 9 percent increase in the number of hunters over the last five years. Even bigger increases were posted for anglers. The overall number of people involved with outdoor activities (beyond just hunters and fishers) also increased.

This is good news not only for hunters and fishers, but for the country as a whole. Declining numbers of outdoor users can lead to a declining constituency for protection of ALL outdoors activities. Secretary of the Interior, Ken Salazar:

“Seeing more people fishing, hunting, and getting outdoors is great news for America’s economy and conservation heritage,” said Salazar. “Outdoor recreation and tourism are huge economic engines for local communities and the country, so it is vital that we continue to support policies and investments that help Americans get outside, learn to fish, or go hunting. That is why, through President Obama’s America’s Great Outdoors initiative, we have been focused on helping Americans rediscover the joys of casting a line, passing along family hunting traditions, and protecting the places they love.”

This August, 2012 preliminary report will be followed by more reports, perhaps fueling speculation as why a reversal in years of decline in numbers recreating outdoors has occurred during this Great Recession. IMO, many folks are visiting the outdoors for many reasons because trips to parks closer to home is both cheaper and easier than flying to popular, pre-packaged tourist "destinations." Also, women continue to be the fastest growing demographic in hunting and (I believe) fishing. And certainly there is the distinct possibility that the primal hunter/gatherer urge has a modern economic edge to it: Deer taken for food on a public land or on a friend's farm may prove cheaper than buying meat-under-cellophane; it certainly has been for me.

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Arrow 19 replies Author Time Post
Reply Hunter numbers up, reversing two decades of downward trend. (Original post)
Eleanors38 Dec 2012 OP
rrneck Dec 2012 #1
Eleanors38 Dec 2012 #2
rrneck Dec 2012 #3
digonswine Dec 2012 #4
Eleanors38 Dec 2012 #5
digonswine Dec 2012 #6
Paladin Dec 2012 #7
Eleanors38 Dec 2012 #8
Paladin Dec 2012 #9
Eleanors38 Dec 2012 #10
Paladin Dec 2012 #12
Eleanors38 Dec 2012 #13
Paladin Dec 2012 #14
Eleanors38 Dec 2012 #15
AlecBGreen Dec 2012 #16
Paladin Dec 2012 #17
AlecBGreen Dec 2012 #18
digonswine Dec 2012 #19
Berserker Dec 2012 #11

Response to Eleanors38 (Original post)

Sun Dec 2, 2012, 02:36 PM

1. I wonder if theyre just hungry? nt

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Response to rrneck (Reply #1)

Sun Dec 2, 2012, 02:44 PM

2. I think that's part of it...

Pick up a hook 'n' bullet publication, and you would think one has to be independently wealthy to hunt; and to an extent, that is much truer now than when I was growing up. I followed my Dad's advice about hunting cheap: Always bring the hunting topic up with people; in general conversation, at parties, with strangers. After the negative fall-out, someone out there will note your interest, and you may get invited on a hunt. My two regular deer-hunting events are on private land where I am a guest.

When you get invited back, time and again, I've found it says something about you and the people extending that courtesy.

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Response to Eleanors38 (Reply #2)

Sun Dec 2, 2012, 02:49 PM

3. My dad and assorted uncles

used to chase down rabbits and club them with sticks to sell the pelts and buy shotgun shells when they were kids. But that was a long time ago.

If you're an urban dweller I don't doubt its expensive. Country living would probably make it easier.

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Response to Eleanors38 (Original post)

Sun Dec 2, 2012, 02:51 PM

4. There is nothing cheap about venison or fish--

let's not kid ourselves. Venison is VERY expensive, unless one shoots 8 deer per year. A half-way decent rifle runs $350.00 easy.
Then there is time and blahblah.
Fishing is great-but we spend much more getting to where we can get fish, rods, lures, etc.

I say this as a person who does these things.

The idea that venison is cheap is silly.

There is a downside to all this in my area.

All property is now divided into 40 and even 20 acre portions so that each person, generally those not living in the area, can have their own little hunting ground.
I am 38--when I was young, all land was owned by those in the neighborhood. We knew whose land we were on and had a good relationship with those around us.
Now--each little bit of land is owned for the exclusive right to hunt it. People are truly pricks when it comes to this ownership. This might seem like a generalization, but this is one that holds true.
Hunting has been ruined here because of its popularity.

We can paint things any color we wish, but for those living in popular hunting areas--it sucks.
Also-since city slickers want the land, the prices go up-meaning that we can no longer afford to buy it. People that want to "hunt" it for 2 weeks a year have way more money to buy it up.

By the way-I realize that my rant has little to do with your OP!!

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Response to digonswine (Reply #4)

Sun Dec 2, 2012, 03:25 PM

5. My experience is completely different...

As a person who also "does these things," my venison runs about $1.85/lb. This, after figuring in:

(1) Gas to ranches;
(2) Range fees;
(3) Ammo for season/practice;
(4) Share of food & beer;
(5) License, fees, etc.;
(6) Partial processing fees.

(My pawnshop rifle & scope -- $290 -- has long since "amortized" itself)

It would be good if there was more public land to hunt. But the folks who own the lands where I hunt do not charge anyone to hunt; they require something more dear of hunters: Respect for the land, cooperation and clean-up, and a good time. But I guess the Texas Hill Country is not as "popular" a place to hunt as I thought.

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Response to Eleanors38 (Reply #5)

Sun Dec 2, 2012, 03:36 PM

6. It is different based on location-

I am in central/northern Wisconsin, and you can trust me, it is different here now.
It may be different where you are, but I will absolutely not hunt on public land here.
I have had many bad experiences with dipshits that do not know how to handle a gun and that I do not trust. It takes one drive to know who does and does not respect the power of a gun. My experience has demonstrated that most folks handle their guns with more carelessness than I care for.

And here--folks spend countless dollars on stands, guns, roads--way more than than it would cost for a lifetime of eating even the best cuts of beef.

That's just here.

That being said, I still take a gun into the woods!-not for protection, either.

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Response to Eleanors38 (Reply #5)

Sun Dec 2, 2012, 05:10 PM

7. If You're Deer Hunting In The Texas Hill Country....

...without having to pay the landowners for the privilege, I hope you realize just how damned good you've got it. Absent some sort of family arrangement, or maybe some type of business quid-pro-quo, free deer hunting in Texas is virtually unheard of. Generally speaking, venison is about the most expensive meat there is......

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Response to Paladin (Reply #7)

Mon Dec 3, 2012, 09:46 AM

8. Some corrections...

The places I hunt do not belong to family members or business associates. They belong to:



Friends.



Friends I have made over the years. In fact, I have turned down other offers. I have enough, but do wish to get a pig.

No, venison is cheaper than beef. My experience cannot be denied, only disbelieved.

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Response to Eleanors38 (Reply #8)

Mon Dec 3, 2012, 12:16 PM

9. Like I Said.....


....I hope you realize how good you've got it. The Hill Country is beautiful (I now live there), but it's rough and rocky and it isn't good for much other than deer hunting; hunting lease fees keep a lot of landowners going. I hunted Hill Country deer for better than 40 years, so my experience cannot be denied, either. Venison may be cheaper for you than beef, but it sounds like you're among the fortunate few.....

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Response to Paladin (Reply #9)

Mon Dec 3, 2012, 12:35 PM

10. Fortunate: An old hippy with hippy friends!

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Response to Eleanors38 (Reply #10)

Mon Dec 3, 2012, 04:43 PM

12. If You're In Austin, You Must Have Plenty Of Such Friends. (nt)

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Response to Paladin (Reply #12)

Tue Dec 4, 2012, 02:52 PM

13. Yeah, but we are dying out, or being overrun.

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Response to Eleanors38 (Reply #13)

Tue Dec 4, 2012, 02:56 PM

14. Don't Even Get Me Started About Austin.


It's too nice a day for me to start foaming at the mouth......

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Response to Paladin (Reply #14)

Tue Dec 4, 2012, 03:29 PM

15. Well, 65 is coming: lower prop taxes, medicare!

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Response to digonswine (Reply #4)

Mon Dec 17, 2012, 10:02 PM

16. here's my math

$300 for rifle
$150 for meat grinder
= $450 investment

$2 for ammo per deer
$3 for baggies for deer
= $5 per deer

Land is in the family, license not required in the state I hunt. I guess you could also throw in the cost of the cammo I wear, so you could add another $30.

I have shot 10 deer, each yielding 30+ pounds of meat. Thats 300lbs of lean, 100% grassfed organic meat for $530. That comes to $1.76 per pound. With the two major upfront costs out of the way, its only going to go down over the years. Seems like a good deal to me.

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Response to AlecBGreen (Reply #16)

Tue Dec 18, 2012, 11:24 AM

17. You're Benefitting From Unique Personal Circumstances.


Congratulations.

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Response to Paladin (Reply #17)

Tue Dec 18, 2012, 05:14 PM

18. perhaps

I was responding to the argument that venison isnt cheap. In my case, it is.

Furthermore, Im not special. There are many in my area who hunt friends' & family's land. In fact I would wager the majority do not pay to hunt someone else's property. Actually, being a rural area, they probably lease surplus land to city slickers wanting to get out and hunt.

Additionally, many inherit firearms and share the use of grinders among family members. While VA citizens need to pay for a hunting license, it is $46. Spread over 3 deer or 90lbs of meat, that means venison can be had for the price of approximately $0.50 per pound plus cost of ammunition. Not too shabby.

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Response to AlecBGreen (Reply #16)

Wed Dec 19, 2012, 10:19 PM

19. That is a good deal in your case-

if you tag on the price of land--Not so good. There is also property tax/year. It is the lucky hunter, you know, who has this nice cheap ancestral land.

In Wisconsin here-for most, it is not cheap.

BUT--I get to commune a bit with my dead Grandfather. I get to use my Dad's gun. I get to act like the past is now and all the same things from my youth are present. I do not distill it down to dollars-usually.

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Response to Eleanors38 (Original post)

Mon Dec 3, 2012, 01:21 PM

11. But WAIT

 

I was told by the Anti's in RKBA that Hunter numbers are down. Now I don't know what to think what ever do I do?

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