10 Reasons to Take Your Kids Hunting

October 15, 2012

Children, Skills

Teaching your kids to hunt

“Oooh, there are a couple of squirrels in the pecan trees. Can I go get them?”

My oldest son was sitting in the family room recliner this morning still in his pajamas. He and I were the only ones awake. When he looked out the window, his morning mental fog cleared immediately. He wanted to harvest a couple of squirrels.

“Ok.”, I said. A few minutes later he was dressed, armed, and out the door. If only I could get him to move that quickly at other times.

The Benefits of Hunting

Obviously this wasn’t his first time hunting. I have taken him squirrel hunting before. We’ve gone into the woods on our property and have sat together quietly until the squirrels made their presence known to us. We’ve turned the arbor-dwelling little creatures into delicious meals. I’ve written before about the Squirrel Extraordinaire: A Delicious Recipe that my family enjoys.

He has also harvested a deer and doves. We have a rule in our house: if you kill it, you eat it. (That even applied to a snake one time. We do, of course, have exceptions to the you-kill-it-you-eat-it rule. If a predator, such as a coyote, is threatening our animals, we may protect our animals by killing the predator without eating it.)

We are not trophy hunters. We are meat hunters. Supplementing our diet with game that we’ve harvested just makes sense.

Teaching your children to hunt is good for many reasons.

  • Cut down on grocery bill. As food prices continue to increase, it’s nice to be able to provide a very inexpensive dinner.
  • Develop hunting and processing skills. Hunting is a skill. Being able to stalk prey, knowing where to aim, and when to pull the trigger is an acquired skill.
  • Build confidence. Knowing that you can provide for yourself and family using a weapon is critical. If the first time you enter the woods to hunt, you have a starving family depending on you, that’s a lot of pressure. Knowing that you’ve done it before is a great comfort.
  • Spend time together. There are many reasons to spend time with your kids. Hunting is a good way to spend time with them doing something that is not only useful, but enjoyable.
  • Get kids outdoors. Many kids spend too much time playing video games and sucking down sodas and junk foods. Hunting will get them into the great outdoors where they can appreciate creation.
  • Teach them to quietly navigate terrain. Being able to move through the woods quietly is another skill that may come in handy one day.
  • Promote gun safety and familiarity. Using a weapon is a skill every child should learn. I don’t want them ignorant about weapons. That is really dangerous! Especially if they are unfamiliar with them and find one at a friend’s house.
  • Cross-training. If TEOTWAWKI comes, we are all going to be very, very busy trying to stay alive. Having someone else trained to hunt will improve your odds.
  • Get use meats that may one day be a staple in our diet. If you’ve ever eaten venison or duck, you know that it can have a very gamey taste. There are ways to help mask the taste, but even that takes some practice.
  • A well rounded education. We homeschool and we take it seriously. Our kids learn math, grammar, science, history, literature, and geography, among other things. But as required as those subjects are, it’s also important to teach them skills such as cooking, gardening, animal husbandry, home repairs, and hunting.

By the way, a few minutes later, my son came back with 2 squirrels in his hand. He’s outside dressing them as I write this. Looks like we’ll have squirrel dumplings for dinner.

Do you hunt? Do you take your kids hunting?

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5 Comments on “10 Reasons to Take Your Kids Hunting”

  1. Beck Says:

    Need to invite J. He loves squirrel dumplings.



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