03 December 2012

Call me Purist

OK, here’s a random thought spurred by a tweet.

First, the tweet contents. It was a joke: “Do you know the difference between a hunter and a fisherman? A hunter lies in wait. A fisherman waits and lies.”

This got me thinking about something that has bugged me for a while about the modern sport of hunting: blinds and stands. (And associated with those, things like lures and decoys.)

“Hunt” is an active verb. It is defined by my American Heritage Dictionary, as it relates to animals, as the act of pursuing, seeking out, searching for, or searching through (as in “I’ve hunted those woods many times”). It is not defined as “soaking a cloth with doe urine, fixing it to a post or a tree, and climbing the tree to sit on a seat built there and wait for a buck to come to you.”*

A good hunter is not necessarily one who comes home with the biggest set of antlers. A good hunter is one who actively seeks out the area where the game lives, then pursues the game as it moves throughout that area until a clean shot can be made (and is successful).

And I don’t really want to do that, which is probably why I’ve never hunted.

*Now, the taking of game for food with no consideration for sport is a different matter. When one’s survival is at stake, there is nothing wrong with fishing in a barrel, so to speak. As long as the owner of the barrel is OK with it.