The Class We All Wish We Had: High School Students Learn About Hunting by Harvesting a Bison

A bison in a field

Imagine if everyone had equal opportunity to learn about and understand hunting.

And you get to take it as a high school course..

Sounds like something every hunter dreams of. Not that we expect everyone to like it, fully understand or support, but at least try to understand this deeply historic tradition.

Yukon News says that high school students had this opportunity in Yukon, Canada.

They took 12 students out to teach them respectful Bison hunting techniques. With the goal in mind to connect them with the food that they eat.

YES, give me more… please, spread this message farther.

Above all else, teaching the fundamentals to people is more important now then ever with more people straying away from traditional living every day.

Jim Welsch, hunter education coordinator for the Yukon department of Environment put it perfectly.

“This is this opportunity to teach kids about their connection with food and the opportunity to be on the land and be present and be moving around”

The students used snowmobiles and headed into the woods. They set up camp and prepared to do some learnin’ the good old fashion way, by doing.

The first morning Welsch spotted a Bison and was able to sneak up on it and get a good look. He took it down with one shot.

“That’s what we want to show the kids: to take the time to practice a lot, to be competent when they’re there, to minimize suffering”

Now, this is hunter education… showing it in person and the ethics behind it. Welsch didn’t downplay these moments though.

“It’s a sad moment, every time. But there’s also this kind of connection happening, and there’s kind of awakening in these kids of what it means to be a consumer, and what it means to eat meat.”

Since the students were learning Welsch was the only one to harvest a Bison. This gave the students the opportunity to have plenty of time to dress the animal and learn about meat care.

The students had to complete prior courses to be able to attend this trip including navigation and snow mobile safety. With the bison being harvested on the first day this provided more opportunity to learn about lighting fires, running wood stoves, and using ropes and knots while camping in the cold.

Oh, how I would have paid so much more attention if I had a practical class like this.

This is really impressive to say the least. Taking on something like this is not easy logistically for ensuring safety is met. But, it is important for people to learn and understand these ways.

It’s good to see hunting education being delivered like this, it gives great hope for the generations to come.

A beer bottle on a dock



A beer bottle on a dock