Seeing your kids grow year after year is one of the most rewarding experiences of being a parent. As they become adults, your children will automatically start to follow your lead in every aspect of life including hunting. Perhaps, you are a great hunter, and you probably learned hunting from your parents, and you have a lot of good memories of your hunting experience.
This is the time you need to pass your hunting knowledge down to your young ones to help them become great hunters as well. Due to urbanization, most kids are getting less exposure to outdoor activities and showing less interest in hunting. One of the most critical things that you need to remember is that hunting teaches kids a lot of valuable lessons that would otherwise not be learned at all.
While hunting, the kids are exposed to the real world of predators and prey where they learn about the importance of planning and self-discipline. Here are some of the easy hunting skills that you should teach your kids.
Start with Gun Safety
Gun safety is always paramount when it comes to child hunting. Although teaching your child to field dress a squirrel or track deer signs is essential, nothing is more important than ensuring that your little kid and everyone around them is safe. Keep in mind that it only takes a single bullet to kill someone. To stay safe with any type of firearm, you have to ensure that it is handled by a trained shooter who knows what he/she is doing.
Teach your child about the various mechanics of a gun including how to load it and unload it, turn the safety on and off and also check its chamber. You should also teach your kid a proper way of carrying the gun through the woods. You can boost your child’s shooting confidence by finding some local youth hunting and shooting programs.
Hunting Ethics and Etiquette
Once you are through with the gun safety and the basic hunting skills, you need to teach your kid about ethics and etiquette. Keep in mind that no one else is going to educate your kid about what is right and wrong unless you do it yourself. Some of the things that your kid needs to understand as early as possible include:
- They need to be respectful of nature and other people’s property
- They should always ask permission before hunting on any private land
- They should never put their gun at anything except an animal that they intend to shoot
- Always leave the woods as they found it
- Don’t invite other people to hunt with them on private land even if they have the permission
- They should never shoot in the direction of people, homes, or vehicles.
Navigating Through the Woods
Good hunters will always find their way through the woods. To raise a good hunter, you need to make sure that your child is always comfortable in the woods. Therefore, you need to make the woods a common place for your child. Make sure that you spend some quality time in the forest with your kid every day. You can choose to lie in open fields or go for walks.
The bottom line is that you need to make sure that your child is always comfortable while in the woods. With practice, the kid will know how to maneuver through the thickets without stepping on every dry branch along their way. He/she will also appreciate the fact that if you need to see the deer and the squirrels, you need to learn how to be still for as long as you can.
Teach them about Clothing
You should also teach your son or daughter about the right clothing that they need when they go hunting. For your kid, all they need is orange and camo. You should teach them always to wear clothes that will help them stay warm and dry but comfortable.
The other thing that you should make your child understand is that they will always need thick socks, a hat, safety boots, a rain gear, long underwear, and a scarf. Make them appreciate the fact that hunting isn’t only about the gun, and excellent shooting skills.