10 Tips to Prepare for Hunting Season
Hunting is not only a sport but a way to feed yourself and your family. It’s also a pragmatic way to restore local ecology to a natural state. Specific populations, like those of nearly every species of goose, are severely overpopulated and hunting them helps other species to thrive rather than be crowded out.
To make the most of your hunting seasons, it’s important to be both organized and prepared. The following 10 tips will ensure that you are both of those things.
Know the Exact Dates and Times of Your Local Hunting Seasons
If you’re in Michigan, look up Michigan hunting seasons. Do the same for whatever state you’re in. The rules this year may not be the same next year.
Know the Limits for Each Hunting Season
How many of each animal are you allowed to hunt? Are there daily limits or limits for the season? These are essential questions to answer each year as they are subject to change.
Apply for Permits
Depending on your region and what you’re looking to hunt, you may need to apply for a hunting license as well as a permit for certain things. Again, this varies region to region, so if you’ve recently moved or plan on moving before the season begins, you should look into this.
Make Sure All of Your Licenses are Valid
As with permits, make sure that your hunting license and any other license you might need is valid. This includes any weapon permits you may need and even your driver’s license.
Check Weapons and Safety Gear
Always make sure that your gear is in good shape. You don’t want to get caught out in the middle of your hunt with a broken strap, shoelaces, or the soles coming off of your boots. The same goes for the gear of any kids you’re bringing with you. Make sure everything is in great shape for safety and comfort.
Make Any Last Minute Purchases or Investments
Need a new piece of gear? Make sure to plan your purchase in advance and have everything on hand when the season starts, especially if you’re looking at a new gun or bow.
Set Up Any Equipment You May Need
Trail cams, blinds, stands, bait areas – There is plenty to set up in advance depending on what type of hunting you’re looking to do. If you’ve already set up these areas, make sure they’re well-maintained.
You want to make a good, clean shot and prevent the animal from suffering as much as possible. Better shots also help protect the meat and hide from damage and contamination.
Find a New Hunting Ground
You don’t have to pay for hunting rights in most areas. Not only will many local farmers be more than happy to have you hunt deer, coyotes, rabbits, and other game on their property, they’ll be able to give you tips on when and where you will be able to make the most of your time.
Further, conservation groups like the Nature Conservancy have thousands of acres of land in many states that are open to hunters. All you have to do is asked for permission and, more than likely, you’ll get it as long as you have your paperwork in order. These may not be the best places for trophy hunting as they are often areas where the local populations are out of control.
Clear Trails and Paths
Make travel easy and reduce noise by clearing trails and paths of excess brush and low limbs before you need to use them.