I want to post ads on job boards across the internet that say, ” New Hunters Wanted”.
Between 2011 and 2016 the number of active hunters dropped by 2 million people. With the decline in hunting participation, it’s obvious we need to find ways to actively recruit new hunters.
Older Hunters Are Out
The information points to a number of older hunters hanging up there red felt hats and the generations behind them aren’t taking their place. How can we stop this trend?
Like any important cause, we must get involved. That is what fostered greenhornhunting.com. A website focused on educating the new hunters looking for mentoring and guidance.
Are You a Potential Hunter?
The statistics tell us that there are over 32 million people in america that shoot firearms and 23 million that enjoy shooting archery. Even if 50% of those groups crossed between disciplines, that would still mean there are over 40 million Americans that participate in shooting sports.
Now with only a little over 11 million of those people calling themselves hunters through the purchasing of tags and license, we definitely have several potential applicants. See the real challenge here is “what is keeping those shooters from becoming hunters?”
I feel from the posts I read on social media and the articles that ask questions of new hunters, the real challenge is confidence. Many of these shooters would become hunters if someone was there to guide them.
Hunting was injected into my bloodstream when I was brought into this world. My family hunted because the wild game was a primary food source. I easily forget that the reason hunting comes so easy for me is because I had a long mentorship program through my father and my uncle. These guys invested many hours teaching me the ways of the hunter.
Hunting Mentors Needed
So the real gap between these millions of shooting advocates and them becoming hunters is mentoring. I often wonder if I would be the avid outdoor guy I am today if those men hadn’t invested so much in me.
My dad can’t physically hunt anymore and my uncle passed away a few years ago. The tradition lives on through my brothers and me. We are teaching our kids the hunting lifestyle and the opportunities that come with it. It’s not a forced thing like it was when I grew up, I guess I could have just stayed home. But we are introducing them to hunting lifestyle and they love it.
So how do we stop this downward trend and bring in new hunters?
It starts with mentoring. And I’m all for helping kids get started in the sport, but the ones we need are adults with dollars to spend and a heart to lead the coming generations. As a Hunter Education instructor it blows me away how many people come through my classes in their 20’s, 30’s, 40’s, even 50’s that have never hunted. But darn it they are going to give it a try before it’s to late.
Are you a veteran hunter that just doesn’t really care if you kill another animal? I understand, no worries. But wouldn’t you like to know that many generations from now the hunting tradition still carries on? See the reason our hunter population is shrinking as I said earlier is that you guys are leaving and no one is coming in to take your place. So I guess I’m asking that you find a replacement at a minimum. But if you mentor just 2 more then you helped double our numbers.
Where Should You Start?
So I first want to say thank you for being concerned enough about the hunting tradition that you took time to read through my article. I just want to find ways to change this growing trend of shrinking hunter numbers. This is why I wrote an e-book that is focused on giving step by step instruction for new hunters that need mentoring, but I may never meet them. I welcome veterans to read it also and help me make it better.
Just click on the link below and it will take you to the page where you can get a free copy.