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Youth Hunting Ethics.

Discussion in 'Hunting' started by Cemo, Apr 9, 2012.

  1. Cemo

    Cemo Well-Known Member

    Youth hunting. I think it is the best thing to happen since icecream. I see it as a great way to get the kids interested in hunting and the great outdoors. However I find it hard to belive when I see a picture of a six year old with a turkey while holding a long barreled 12 ga. or a picture of a deer that they supposly shot with a .3006. Most 10 year old and even 12 year old kids have trouble with these guns, how can a one half their age manage the recoil, much less holding the gun up. Is this for real or just a poaching adult cheating on ethical hunters and teaching a six year old that's it's ok to lie and cheat? What's your opinion and experience?
  2. Loosedhorse

    Loosedhorse member

    I wouldn't assume dishonesty unless I had very good reason. If a 12 year-old can give or take a football tackle, he can take a .30-06, IMHO.
  3. SimplyChad

    SimplyChad Well-Known Member

    I learned to hunt with a 3006 at about 8. Uncle thought its was the funniest **** ever to have me shoot it sitting on a bucket. Kids are tougher then you think.
  4. Rembrandt

    Rembrandt Well-Known Member

    Finding the right gun is like buying shoes for a youngster....what fits today will change in about a month. I took the grandkids to Scheels to find guns that they could shoulder and feel comfortable with. While looking for shotguns to hunt deer with it became apparent not all manufacturers approach the youth gun market the same. You really need to have the kids handle the guns to know which fits best.

    Our two nine year old twin grand daughters found the Mossberg youth 20 gauge similar in size to a toy gun. We practiced all summer shooting .22 rifles to get sight alignment and safety basics down. When they felt comfortable hitting targets 80% of the time we moved on to the shotgun basics. They never fired a single shotgun round until the moment they pulled the trigger on their deer. In practice all I had them do was load dummy rounds and practice dry firing. It may have been sneaky on my part, but I've seen too many kids close their eyes and flinch with bigger recoil guns. Needless to say they were both surprised when the shotgun went off and had a bigger blast than the .22's they had practiced with. The recoil didn't really matter at that point.....their attention soon shifted to the deer they had just bagged.

    Our five year old grand son wasn't affected in the least by the little 20 gauge recoil....in fact he wanted to practice every evening after school. Here again the size of the gun was the key to his success. Had it been a larger adult sized gun the experience would have been problematic. Because the gun was similar in size to his toy guns he took to the small shotgun quickly. He just got his first Turkey Saturday and wanted to know if he could get more....had to explain how tags and licensing system works. (heehee)

    I've had the privilege as a 30 year Hunter Education Instructor to see thousands of kids get started in shooting. These kids have no trouble learning how an I-phone and computer work, don't underestimate their ability to handle and use firearms at an early age either.

    Kids know that handling firearms and hunting is a "step" up into the adult world. Next to getting their drivers license firearms tell the adults in their lives that they want to earn the responsibility and trust to prove themselves.

    Biggest hindrance to kids hunting and shooting at an early age are the parents who are dealing with their own fears and worries.
    Last edited: Apr 9, 2012
  5. jbkebert

    jbkebert Well-Known Member

    My four children were all introduced to firearms at a early age. The boys ages 11 and 12 have both taken deer and the 12 year old a few turkey. My 11 year old Caleb is not comfortable with shotguns and that is fine. He wants to hunt turkey but feels he needs to use a bow. So far he is not good enough that I will allow that. The short point is my kids do their own hunting but only when they prove to be capable of doing so cleanly.

    As far as recoil is concerned my kids start with a .22lr then to a .17hmr or .22mag which provide the noise but no recoil. Then to a .223 or a .22-250 to a .243. Then on to the .257 roberts,.270 win, .308 win. Keigan who is 12 now shoots a .300 win mag and does so very very well. My girls ages 5 and 6 have fired thousands of rounds through .22's, .17's and .223 or .22-250. They are not ready for anything bigger so we don't shoot anything bigger. Keira my 5 year old is a better pistol shot with a .38 or a .22lr than her three siblings. So we are not cheating just working our way up focusing on accuracy instead of bang bang bang.

    I do not have the years as a hunter ed instructor as Rembrandt (30 years WOW). I have been an instructor for 9 years now and currently serve as the president for Shawnee county Kansas. I have been involved in dozens of youth hunts and have worked with a couple thousand kids going through hunter education or other youth shooting events. I have never seen a adult kill an animal and ask the kid to take credit.
  6. glock36

    glock36 Well-Known Member

    I have been teaching one of my 11 year old twin boys the proper and safe handling of fire arms. When I got my REM 700 ADL 30-06 Springfield for Christmas he wanted to give it a go. So he brought up to his shoulder with me standing right besides him and he let off the first shot ( with a giant smile he said " let's do it again " so I let him. This time with me a little further away he nailed the milk jug dead center @ 53 yards unsupported off hand. We both smiled and he told his momma that he has to get himself one for his 12th birthday. Of corse I agreed.
    Don't under estimate what a motivated child can and will accomplish.

    Good luck
    God speed

    Sent from my Desire HD using Tapatalk
  7. Art Eatman

    Art Eatman Administrator Staff Member

    My father was shooting a double-barrelled 12-gauge when he was ten. He never forgot the results from, "Every now and then, both barrels went off at once." Didn't affect his shooting, though.
  8. Hawghunter68

    Hawghunter68 Member

    I shot my first rifle when I was 6,it was a 243.Win. and I got a nice half moon scar from it but I hit the target.Needless to say that gave me a bad feeling on guns for a few years,410's and 22's were about all I would shoot till my Pops told me I was ready to go after deer as a hunter not just a tag-a-along.I killed my first deer that season with a 20 ga.pump and after that I was ready for a BIG 12 like everybody used.I continued to shoot my 20 for a few more years then on my 15th birthday I got my deer slayer,a Remington 1100 with a 30inch fixed full choke 12 ga. shotgun with a few boxes of 000 buckshot.I have killed more than my share of deer with this gun and I am sure as long as the dogs can get the deer up and runnin,it will kill a few more.
    Now for the kids,myself and my brother start our kids with 410's but only for small game and dove hunting.They will taught just like we were,hunt small game and learn to respect the power of the weapon and to respect the animals being hunted.Now when they turn 10,they will take the state hunter safety course and the following dove season will find a 20ga. pump in their hands and if they are ready and shoot good,then buckshot will be ready for them when deer season opens.
  9. tri70

    tri70 Well-Known Member

    Just because you see a picture of a kid with a tagged animal, doesn't mean they watched while an adult shot it for them. There is usually a story that goes with it about how much practice they, what type of gun they used. What types of guns they had been used to shooting.

    I get out with my kids and let them shoot 22lr, 223, 243, mini 6.8, and recently my 9 yr old son shot his 1st 12 ga with 00 buck. He was very surprised by it but the next weekend we shot my 20 ga pump, he did not mind it at all and fired it 3-4 times.
  10. Grumulkin

    Grumulkin Well-Known Member

    Kids are indeed tougher than many think. If you don't make a big deal out of how afraid they should be of recoil, they probably won't make a big deal out of it either.

    When my son was in the 10 to 12 year old range, he was used to shooting a 22 LR Contender handgun I had. Unbeknownst to him, I acquired another handgun barrel in 30/30 Winchester. One day while shooting, I took the gun up to the house, switched barrels to 30/30 Winchester and brought it back having put a round in the chamber. I handed the gun to him and advised him to hold on tight whereupon he said, "Dad, this gun doesn't kick very much." The look on his face was priceless when he touched the round off.

    My joke didn't deter him from enthusiastically shooting a 50 AE I acquired 2 or 3 years later.
  11. Art Eatman

    Art Eatman Administrator Staff Member

    I don't doubt that some of these early-age kills were actually done by a grownup. I see it as a joke, mostly, and I really doubt it hurts the kid. Odds are, he's also told that it's a joke, and a secret, and just for fun.
  12. buck460XVR

    buck460XVR Well-Known Member

    Certainly could be a joke. Not a funny one tho when it entails a youth only season/hunt. Dads get popped around here all the time for it. Dad takes kid out during a youth only hunt with the intent of lettin' the boy get his first kill. Biggest Buck/Tom dad has even seen shows up, dad shoots the trophy and has the kid tag it and then lie about breakin' the law. Not funny. What's funny is when the warden knocks on the door cause Jr. has been telling the kids at school what really happened.

    I have little doubt that many of the pics of kids with dead animals are true. The majority of hunters are law abiding, honest folk. Like all hunters and fishermen they may stretch the truth and embellish the story a tad, but the pics are more than likely real.
  13. Art Eatman

    Art Eatman Administrator Staff Member

    I pretty much believe that something like a Youth Only hunt would be honest. Kids aren't good at lying to other kids, and they do like to talk to each other about their hunts.
  14. Davek1977

    Davek1977 Well-Known Member

    My nephew is 10 yrs old. He dropped a mule deer doe with one shot @ 200 yards last fall with a full-sized Rem 700 in .243. He has also shot .410s, 20 gauges, .270's, my AR-15, and even my 9mm without issues. Anyone insinuating anyone but he shot his deer would be insulting everyone involved with his training and hunting. If you are going to cll someone a liar, or even insinuate it, you better have more than amere hunch if you don't want to come off as being extremely insulting to a young person trying to get into the world of hunting, let alone those who have helped him along his or her way
  15. AKElroy

    AKElroy Well-Known Member

    My 10 year old son cleanly took his first buck last season with his single shot .243, 100+ yards. We shot A LOT the year prior before I was comfortable letting him take the shot. His shooting was not good enough when he was 9, so he had to wait another year. The deal was he had to be able to put a shot onto a softball sized target at 100 yards 100% of the time before he was allowed to have that rifle in his lap in a stand. He was ready, confident, and made a great neck shot.
  16. 41 Mag

    41 Mag Well-Known Member

    Well to be honest when my cousin and I were young 5-8yrs old, our pop's drug us out to shoot their 03A3's every Labor Day in prep for the upcoming deer season. While we didn't actually hunt with those rifles, we did shoot them several times whether we liked it or not. What came from it was that we learned not to fear the recoil or noise from them. It has made us both very good shots through the years.

    My oldest grandson bluntly told me, just after his 3rd birthday, he wanted to shoot himself a hog. This was taken by me as tongue in cheek, but he simply wouldn't let it lay. The biggest issue was finding something that would fit a little boy of his stature, as has been mentioned fit can be everything. I told him if he was serious he would have to hold the rifle himself, which I was hoping was partly a way around it for another year or two on my part. This was all well in good until he asked if he could look through the scope of my Ruger Compact one afternoon, not long after his last insistence. I said sure and set it up on the sand bags, where he promptly squared off with it, and then proceeded to raise it up and look around the pasture. He called my bluff and said, "hey this would work for me right". The rifle is chambered in .308 and after a few days on the net looking over load data, I settled on the reduced loads using H-4895, and the 125gr bullets. He started off with three rounds all of which teared up his eyes, but he wiped them off and went on with it. I finally got him settled in to hold the rifle properly which was accounting for most of his recoil issues, and he started shooting some nice groups at 50yds. This was my imposed range limit. I then started setting up life sized paper archery targets on plywood at various ranges out to 75yds and would call out which number from left to right I wanted him to shoot. He had to hit three rounds in the kill zone, on all of them, before I would let him hunt.

    Three weeks before his 4th birthday he shot his first hog and dropped it in it's tracks,

    I shot my first deer using a 30 Carbine at the age of 6, and then followed up with three or four a season, for many years following, using a Win 70 in .243. When my daughter was 6, she was shooting this same rifle plenty good enough for a deer out to 200yds, but it wasn't until she was 9 did she get a chance to make a shot, where she argued with me about using it or my 25-06. I finally gave in, as the deer was slipping further across the pasture, she then reached out just over 185yds with it, and dropped her first buck in it's tracks.

    I have found that even if the fit is not exact, with me and my daughter, and grandson (s), if they have the desire, they will get the job done if they have the desire. The thing is having the desire to start with. In our family everyone hunted, it was a yearly tradition where we all got together and shared the experience. Nowadays, most folks don't have the time our parents had back then, to get out with the kids and share their experiences with. We make it fun, and my daughter and her three, have all wanted to join in on it. It is simply something we can all do together, and enjoy it when we do.

    As for the young folks in pictures, with this, that, or the other, well I have personally seen many youths who were much better shots than their adult parents were. They just go about it as something to do, rather than something to prove.

    Since his initial hog, the oldest grandson now has close to a dozen under his belt with a 6.5x55 and the same .308 with standard loads. He also got a nice doe for his first deer and two nice bucks to follow that one. The doe he shot using the 6.5x55, and the two bucks were using the 25-06 on one, and the .308 on another. The only rifle which actually fits him is the .308, and he would MUCH rather now use the 25-06 go figure.
  17. jbkebert

    jbkebert Well-Known Member

    Great story and photo's 41mag
  18. Cemo

    Cemo Well-Known Member

    Yeap, great story 41 Mag, bet you got a life long hunting buddy there.
  19. Rembrandt

    Rembrandt Well-Known Member

    Great pics 41 mag.....love the smile, that young man is living the good life.
  20. sdhunter

    sdhunter Well-Known Member

    I started at the age of 8 with the 22s and 410's. My first actual bird hunting gun was a remington 870 20 gauge youth model which is what we used in the hunter safety course anyway. (hunting age in sd is 12). My first actual hunting rifle was my dads .243 remington, which i feel is a great starter rifle for deer. I shot that .243 until i was 15 when i bought my own rifle with the money i got from mowing lawns around town which was a single shot 25/06 rem. (which i regret getting rid of). But all through my youth the biggest gun my dad had was a .270 so i never got to shoot any real big calibers but we had no need for them since the biggest critter we hunted was mule deer. I believe it is better to start hunting with smaller calibers but if the kid can handle the bigger ones accurately and keep from flinching more power to them.

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