Hunting has been practiced by humanity for many millennia now. In fact, the very first humans started out as hunters and gatherers, and that is how our ancestors survived. Nowadays though hunting has become more of a hobby than a means to survive. However, it is still a great pastime, and it has a multitude of great advantages that you could draw from. Here are some key reasons to take up hunting.
1. It Makes You Self-Sufficient
Hunting is a very intense and exhilarating activity that compels you to kill another living thing for your sustenance. By taking up hunting you are learning how to be more self-sufficient. Hunting could be a dangerous activity, so you should outfit yourself with the right equipment.
When it comes to weapons you have a choice between rifles, composite bows, or crossbows. For beginner hunters, it is a good idea to use rifles because they are a lot more accurate and powerful. Bows and crossbows are a lot more challenging because they have a shorter range, and less accurate. So the margin of failure is a lot bigger.
Aside from your weapons, it is also important that you have hunting goggles because you’ll be running through forests. Bushes and leaves could get in your line of vision, and even poke you in the eye. The sun or wind could also blind you, and cause you to lose sight of your target. By using military-grade goggles, you’ll be able to stay focused on your target no matter the situation.
2. It Is a Great Way to Get Fresh Meat
One of the best things about taking up hunting is that is a great way to get fresh meat. Even if you take down just a small elk or a young boar, its meat will be able to sustain you for months. Just as long as you preserve it the right way.
The key to preserving meat is that you butcher it right away. Once you take down your target, you should skin and quarter it right away. Make sure that you avoid rupturing the liver or the gallbladder because the bile inside them will spoil the meat. Make it a priority to keep flies away from the carcass because they will lay eggs on the meat, which will eventually grow into maggots.
Once you quarter the meat, you should make sure that you freeze them right away. If you don’t have an icebox or a portable freezer with you, it is best that you cut them into thin strips and dry them instead. If you have salt, you could also make jerky out of the meat.
3. It Gives You New Ingredients to Work With
Most people who don’t hunt usually have limited meat choices. At most their meat choices range from chicken, beef, pork, or turkey. However, if you take up hunting you’ll surely have a wider assortment of meat choices. There’s elk, boar, moose, deer, beaver, squirrel, even bear if you’re feeling adventurous.
So being a hunter is a great way to hone your culinary skills. The woods are filled with a multitude of herbs and ingredients to choose from. So being a hunter gives you the opportunity to hone your foraging skills as well. Just make sure that you learn how to differentiate a poisonous ingredient from a poisonous one. You don’t want to die, just because you were too careless with your choice of mushrooms.
4. It Allows You to Enjoy the Great Outdoors
Being a hunter usually entails you to spend a great deal of time outdoors. You’ll need to run through forests and various terrain. The woods may seem like a dangerous place, and yet is is also a great chance to commune with nature. The forest is full of beautiful sights and the more you hunt, the more you will be able to enjoy it. You’ll also respect nature more because you’ll see how the ecosystem really works.
5. It Is a Great Way to Unwind
Although hunting entails you to spend a lot of time outdoors and staying in cold and wet areas, there is a certain beauty in pitting yourself against the elements. There is also a certain serenity in getting away from civilization, and just communing with nature. Getting away from the day-to-day stresses of the world is yet another reason to go hunting.
6. You’ll Learn a Lot of Great Survival Skills
The woods are a rough and harsh place, so you will need to be both tough and resourceful. As a hunter, you will also need to develop great survival skills.
By stalking prey, you will know how to move stealthily through the forest. By camping in the woods, you’ll learn how to start a fire and ration your supply. You’ll also learn the types of plants and herbs that you could use in your cooking. Being a hunter does not only mean that you know how to use a gun. It is also a great way to develop your skills as an outdoorsman.
7. It Is a Great Way to Unwind
Running on foot through wooded and uneven terrain can be quite a workout. So does stalking through the underbrush and waiting for prey to get into your sights. During a hunt, you may have to stay out in the wilderness for hours on end.
As nighttime comes, the temperature will steadily plummet. The human body uses a lot of calories to stay warm, so just the act of being in the forest could cause you to lose weight. Overall, the act of surviving in the woods takes a lot of calories, so hunting is a great way to stave off the pounds.
Hunting has been a part of the collective human culture. It is one of the main reasons our ancestors survived and thrived as a species. So the art of hunting truly deserves respect. With these reasons, you’ll be hunting in no time.