Monday, November 5, 2012
I have a hard and fast rule that I don't hunt local deer. In the five years we've lived here I've had some pretty nice bucks skulking around the place about this time of year, and I haven't drawn a bow on any of them.
It's not that it's illegal or anything. I could set up a stand or a blind in my back yard and proceed to happily and completely legally arrow as many deer as the law will allow. I don't feed them, even though it's perfectly legal to hunt over a feeder. I don't try to tame them or make them pets. These deer are completely wild and free-ranging. The bucks are, anyway. They only show up in the fall, and are gone as soon as they spot you. The does, however, are lazy-ass loafers whom I practically have to kick out of the yard. Bitches.
The point is, there's really nothing ethically or legally wrong with hunting close (OK, very close, like back yard close) to home. Lots of people do it. Hell, my dad once shot a buck while sitting in his dining room (so maybe that's a little extreme but there were extenuating circumstances: He had just had back surgery, couldn't walk, and he needed the meat. My father is nothing if not practical. Once he healed up, however, it was right back to the woods for him and he hasn't shot a home-based buck since.).
I'm the same way. I just feel like a deer should be earned with some effort and shoe leather, something a bit more involved, a bit more rigorous, than opening the patio door, walking a hundred or so yards and sitting down.
But holy shit, this guy is tempting me. He showed up a couple days ago, following a doe. He's nice. Very nice...
I've never seen him before, and so far, I've only seen him the one time during the last weekend of black powder season. He hasn't been back to tempt me since. For all I know he's hanging in someone's garage right now and the point is moot.
And even though I told myself I wasn't going to bow hunt this year, that I was going to concentrate on the dogs and spend every spare moment bird hunting, I've been flinging a few arrows at the target the past couple days, you know, just to keep in practice. No reason, no reason at all, just a Kyudo thing, really, a meditative device, like yoga or tai chi. Honest...
With apologies to the ghost of George Bernard Shaw for butchering his quote...
Posted by Chad Love at 10:50 PM