When I signed up for a basic hunter safety course as a woman, so many thoughts raced through my head. Will I be the only female? Will the guys not take me seriously? Ugh, do I even care? Truth is (yes, I did care at first) but, women are accepted, appreciated and highly respected when you walk through the doors of your first hunter’s ed course.
Of course, this has not always been the case, but as a woman, wanting to become part of the hunting world, you’re becoming a lot more than just another hunter.
You’re also becoming…
1. A conservationist.
You have a chance to educate thousands of people who don’t truly understand the importance of hunting and the role you play in wildlife populations, restoration to their environment and contributing money directly to conservation by purchasing tags and licenses.
And, if I am not convincing enough, read these 25 reasons why hunting IS conservation.
2. An advocate.
An advocate for all other female hunters, younger and older, who want to take on the challenge and unfortunately, the criticism when becoming a hunter. Female hunters are becoming a much larger part of the hunting population and as a female hunter, you’re able to speak to newcomers your experience and what they might expect.
You learn tons of laws and regulations during your education course that not only go along with conservation, but laws of obtaining and owning a gun, how to walk with one, the parts and types of gun, how fast your bullet will go in a valley and on top of a mountain. Everything from the kind of clothing to wear in different climates, to how to properly make an ethical kill and use the meat… the list goes on.
This doesn’t just go for the ladies (really, all of this applies to our male counterparts as well), but hunting teaches us to be humble. There will be days where you sit in a stand for hours on end, you’re in your blind all morning or afternoon without a single flyover, but you’re taught patience, that’s for sure. It’s not just the killing of the species you’re hunting for that makes it a “hunt”. It’s everything you learn from the moment you wake up and pull on your boots. It’s watching the world wake up and becoming that fly on the wall in mother nature’s home.
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When becoming a conservationist you learn to respect the wildlife you’re going after. Learning to call the shots on whether or not to let a buck have another year to mature and live a healthy life is a difficult decisions some hunters make, but that’s what creates a respectful hunter. Not only are you respecting the wildlife, but are being respected by other hunters, farmers and citizens when abiding by the laws and ethics that go along with hunting.
Like I mentioned before, with every female hunter comes a lot of criticism. Why is she hunting? You gain resilience, empathy and the willingness to become an educator when you come across people who question your decisions. However, with the growing numbers of female hunters, you’re that much stronger.
Eva Shockey says it all a lot better and speaks from way more experience in her book, Taking Aim.