Since the beginning of our relationship, I have made many efforts in convincing my boyfriend to move from our urban hometown of Louisville, Ky to the mountains of southern Tennessee or Georgia. As I was sitting on the couch browsing through Netflix, he caught a glimpse advertising the release of new episodes of this show called Meateater.
“I want to move to Montana,” he said. I about broke my neck turning my head so quick to look at him. After all this time of him arguing for why we should stay in Louisville, he says something bizarre like that. What the hell is in Montana? Of course, the show Meateater and the host Steven Rinella had something to do with it.
He had found interest in this show, listening to the podcasts, and reading several of the books Mr. Rinella published. So what is all this talk about Steven?
I decided to watch a few episodes and listen to the podcasts. I had never really hunted before, but my boyfriend hunts whitetail deer, rabbits, and squirrels and I had been on a few hunts with him. I have personally never killed any animal, but all my life I have loved the taste of deer and rabbit.
Anyways, the podcasts were extremely interesting and informational (but not in the boring way). He discusses a variety of topics from meat processing, hunting gear, licenses and lottery draws, environmental conservation, politics of hunting, etc. I became super interested and learned the insight for why he wanted to move out west to hunt big game like elk and moose. Steven had an episode where he took 2 first time hunters out who happened to be female: Helen and Brittany.
A little research gave me a few important reasons to Why Women Should Hunt.
To Know Where Your Food Comes From
Organic food is a major trend and its everywhere. What is more organic than harvesting and preparing your own source of meat. These animals consumer natural sources for food so your definitely avoiding the hormones. Wild animals enjoy open spaces to freely roam compared to the crammed and unsanitary conditions often found in slaughterhouses and large meat producing facilities. Hunting your food, you connect more with your food by observing its behavior, knowing who has handled it and how it was treated.
To Challenge Yourself
Hunting is not easy by any means. It tests your physical and mental strength whether you are hiking miles in the mountains or withstanding hours of freezing temperatures. Hunting ensures you are in excellent condition, requiring strength and endurance training year round. That is motivation to get into the gym! You also have to learn to control your emotions, specifically when starring down a potential harvest can be the difference between an accurate shot or non-fatally wounding an animal.
The stable of ethical hunting requires patience for when to pass on your animal. Some hunters will watch an animal for a few years before it is mature enough to harvest. It is important to watch for maturity in animals to prevent doing harm to breeding opportunities in a population.
Conservation and Population Control
Every year the purchase of hunting licenses, equipment and supplies contributes millions of dollars to wildlife conservation. Since President Franklin D. Rosevelt signed the Pittman-Robertson Act in 1937 (a federal aid in Wildlife Restoration) more than 7 billion has gone to wildlife conservation aiding to bring back a number of species from the brink of extinction. Hunting also helps keep populations under control. Overpopulation can result in the spread of diseases, disproportionate amount of food sources for animals in a particular area, as well and vehicle-animal collisions.
Reverse Gender Stereotypes
Hunting has long been associated with masculinity, where the woman’s role traditionally began with the preparation of the meal. Hunting is a natural activity in the food chain and should not belong to one gender. Hunting is a privilege, not a right and should be treated as such with respect, legality, and ethical behavior. “Not only are women statistically underrepresented among the ranks of hunters, but I find that they bring a refreshing and invigorating perspective to hunting,” Rinella argues. “I’m talking about real women who are out there pursuing something beyond the approval of men.” Today in America about 11% of men compared to 1% of women buy hunting licenses.
Steven Rinella, http://www.thesportsmanchannel.com/shows/meateater/
For more information, check out this video on the Meateater website.