Tips From the Pros

Introduce Small Game Hunting

Our generation of hunters seem to be focused mainly on big game. So, I asked myself, what steps as outdoorsmen and hunters can we take to introduce small game hunting to a new generation?

Over the past years, I've noticed a decrease in interest and the much needed skills learned by small game hunting. Small game is a great way for a seasoned hunter to stay sharp and to pass down knowledge to a younger generation. No matter how old you are or how many years of hunting experience you have, there's always room for improvement. But nothing is better than introducing your kids to the great outdoors.

Remember to keep it simple for a youth so you are not overwhelming them. The most important thing to implement is safety. Make them understand how to safely handle a firearm and be comfortable with it. Start off by picking weather friendly days to hunt. Prepare and plan the hunt in advance. This will give you a much better chance for success, which is important when hunting with a youth. Choose a youth friendly firearm such as a .410 or 20 gauge shotgun. You can also get bird shot in a .22 caliber rim fire round. Another basic tip is to dress appropriately; getting cold can ruin a positive experience. Making sure a youngster is comfortable and not hunting with oversized gun loads as this percaution can keep a kid interested and hunting longer. Also, make sure to consider the lay of the land and let them understand how to walk, setup and ambush a particular animal. These are things that will develop a solid foundation for all types of hunting.

So take advantage of the remaining hunting season and beautiful wildlife to spend time with the younger generation, which will one day walk in our shoes.

Rob Simons