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Letting Young Kids Kill Deer: Is It Right?

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Letting Young Kids Kill Deer: Is It Right?

Old 11-20-2011, 06:22 PM
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I agree with Ballistictip. I shot my first deer when I was 8 with my grandfather (my Dad doesn't hunt) it was a clean shot through both lungs and he did the majority of the cleaning. He has a rule that the first deer me and my brother killed he would clean while we helped, but after that since we knew had to do it, we cleaned our own deer and thats something i will undoubtedly pass on to my son or daughter, when i have them that is.
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Old 11-20-2011, 06:38 PM
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well this is just my 2 cents on this.i think if the child is around the 11 to 13 range, they should be in the woods learning the sport of hunting. we hunters are far and few between anymore and if they want to hunt and have passed a safety course then they should be in the woods with us. as far as gutting and dragging there own deer, well that really means nothing to me. my sons helped with there first deer and will take more of that responsibility as they harvest more deer. i am 45 years old and love having my sons or hunting buddies to help with the dragging part. it once took me 5 hours to get a 150 pound deer thru some mountain terrain by myself and i was wishing i had help and no one minds that. bottom line is if the kids have an interest in being in the woods hunting with us, then we should teach them the ethics, the proper etiquet, and get them in the sport. again just my 2 cents
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Old 11-20-2011, 07:19 PM
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OLD thread, but I''l add.

I started small game hunting at the age of twelve, which was legal age in PA where I started hunting. Got squirrel, rabbit, some racoons and a buck that year. Dad showed me how to clean the first one. And the rest he's let me take the lead on. We still help each other anytime one of us gets a kill. I think last year I even did my dads. Just part of the process I guess. I did however start shooting at a very young age. Probably age four.
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Old 11-20-2011, 07:20 PM
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Originally Posted by kgkoon
I see many pictures of kids 6, 7, 8, 9 years old who have killed deer. People on my lease let their young kids kill deer. I have always had a problem with this. Why should a kid who is too young to drag a deer out of the woods and clean it, be allowed to kill that same deer? Isn't there some type of responsibility that goes with killing an animal? Doesn't this foster sloppy hunting ethics? I had to hunt with my dad WITHOUT a firearm until I was old enough to field dress a deer and clean it myself. It seems like parents today are so caught up in trying to get their kids a deer they are forgetting to teach them the basics. To me, it is nothing more than a target range if all the kid has to do is pull the trigger while daddy holds the gun steady. Any thoughts?
Thanks for a good laugh clown
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Old 11-20-2011, 07:34 PM
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I can see both....well, ALL sides of the argument here. There are alot of factors involved and age is only one of them. Its not just kids, though, its wives, GFs, etc as well. Anyone who lacks the experience.

I will say that seeing a picture of a kid with a deer that an older relative held the gun for, tracked and field dressed the animal, but then passed off as "Jimmy's first buck" is a little offputting.

On the other hand, my dad has taken a ton of deer in his lifetime and I would have no qualms with volunteering to take care of alot of the leg work issues for him because his health isn't fantastic.

Absolutely, kids have a place in the field and hunting with their family. I take my 9 year old daughter with me when I can and she is the perfect little hunting buddy. She's not proven she can handle a suitable rifle as yet, so she's still my spotter and tracker-helper. She is, however, a dead-eye shot with her Ruger .22 so as soon as she can fit her arm around the stock of the .243, I'm going to let her pop one.

That said, she has gotten her hands dirty field dressing, learned to follow a blood trail, and how to select which deer to harvest over 2 seasons by my side. I'm not going to hold the gun for her but I'm not going to hand her the knife and gut it on her own either.

I think in the end, every kid is different as is every parent. I like to think my daughters are clever, mature, and thoughtful well beyond their years but I am indeed biased.

This was supposed to be the year, to be honest, but target shooting told me "not yet". A little disappointed but that's silly. I know she is but she told me herself, "Dad, I'm not ready but I can still come with you, right?" And here again, my wife took up the .243 and punched out a decent group and declared she was ready to give it a shot. God knows, she's been elbows deep in helping me butcher a few deer over the years and ground plenty of chili meat with me.
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Old 11-20-2011, 08:12 PM
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It went like this for me and my son

1.Took him to the range at 9yrs old and he learned to shoot and handle a firearm.

2. He took his hunter ED class for bow, rifle, muzz and shotgun at 10yrs old.

3. Took him hunting, on the third time out he shot a young doe. He had the X-bow and I told him its all up to him now. Adrenaline rush and heavy breathing was there so I knew he was hooked. I gutted, he watched and held the legs and pulled the guts out.

4. Took him on several out of state hunting excursions with me and we had a great time. Hog hunting in SC. Some not easy whitetail hunts in 15 degree weather in up state NY, PA and horse back and walking in Idaho for mulies.

5. He has been passing on deer until he gets a decent buck to come in (all his choice) passing on many spikes and button bucks.

6. Got him his first sluggun this year 20ga single H&R can't wait to see him use it.

Hopefully I have a life hunting partner.

I am very proud of him, here are some pictures
Attached Thumbnails Letting Young Kids Kill Deer: Is It Right?-don-jordan-mountain.jpg   Letting Young Kids Kill Deer: Is It Right?-jordan-mule-doe.jpg   Letting Young Kids Kill Deer: Is It Right?-jordan-horse.jpg   Letting Young Kids Kill Deer: Is It Right?-hog0109.jpg  
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Old 11-21-2011, 08:18 AM
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I didnt read all the posts but I know one thing.My oldest boy whos now 16 started tagging along with me when he was old enough to walk through the weeds without being carried.

He went scouting and hanging stands with me when he that size, when he was 5 or 6 he would go duck hunting with me, not with a gun but he would sit in the blind and watch.Around 6 or 7 he got a bb gun and we spent hours practicing with it.That fall i took him rabbitt and squirrel hunting.He did well.

About the same time he would go deer hunting with me when I would hunt from the ground.If i shot something he would stay out in the cold and dark and help track it, usually his job was just to mark the last spot of blood.

About 9 years old he got a .22 and a bow and arrow, he spent more time shooting them with supervision than most adults I know would ever dream of practicing.When he was 10 I bought a new muzzleloader and gave him my old one.He could tear it apart, clean it, and put it back together before he ever got to shoot it.He took his first deer that year, one shot, right behind the shoulder, about 100 yrds away from the ground.couple years later he took his first deer with a bow, it was one of the hardest tracking jobs Ive ever seen but he stayed on it till we found his buck.

The entire time he hunted with me I took the time to show him why I was doing things the way I did, explain things, teach him about the weapons he was using and the animals he was persuing.I showed him how to gut, skin, and butcher what he shot.At 10 he could sit patiently for hours, make a shot, and follow up on it as well as most of the adult weekend warriors who are out.He could gut the animal, he could skin it with help, and he knew where his food came from.Could he do everything?Nope, he couldnt hang his own stands, couldnt drag a deer out without help, and other things that most adults can do without much effort.But I guarantee he knew a hell of a lot more about deer and hunting at that point than a lotta guys that go one weekend a year and then drop what they kill off at the locker for someone else to deal with.
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Old 11-21-2011, 08:25 AM
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Sounds to me like your Dad was selfish to me. I have a 13yr old who has killed a dozen deer and gutted everyone of them and helped me to do the butchering. Maybe your Dad didn't have the confidence in you at as young of an age as I did with my son.Anyways I don't think you have any place at all second guessing what someone else does with their kid.
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Old 11-21-2011, 08:36 AM
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Originally Posted by Thunderchicken217
Sounds to me like your Dad was selfish to me. I have a 13yr old who has killed a dozen deer and gutted everyone of them and helped me to do the butchering. Maybe your Dad didn't have the confidence in you at as young of an age as I did with my son.Anyways I don't think you have any place at all second guessing what someone else does with their kid.
I'll second that! My boy shot his first deer this year at 10 years old. He helped me load it up on the atv, held its legs apart while I gutted it, helped me load it into the truck and was right there next to me while processing it until it was his bedtime (school night). I showed him how it was done and he wanted to be there the whole time. Just cause he wasn't the one with the knife don't mean he shouldn't be able to hunt. When it was time to wash up he had just about as much blood on his hands as I did.

Yes I want him to be able to gut and process his own deer and I'm sure he will very soon but I will always be more than happy to help my kids no matter how old they are.
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Old 11-21-2011, 09:26 AM
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Location: Pa
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I love this one!!!

First of all as far as Im concerned... Were I hunt a 6 7 0r 8 year old prob would not be able to pull off a hunt... I dont hunt from heated shooting houses...

I watch gey gregory from the wild outdoors let his son kill deer when he was like 5 years old... All that told me was this guy is shooting deer like ducks on a pond on his 1000 plus acre petting zoo...

My son didnt kill his first deer until he was 14 years old... Out of a tree stand 20 plus feet in the air with a safty harness on... Not out of a confy ground blind with coloring books and snacks... He wasent sleeping and i woke him up to shoot a his deer...

I hear all these stories about guys on these forum with kids that are 5-10 years old shooting deer and turkey... this is not hunting!!! this is just plain killing deer nothing more...

if these people's private land went away there kids wouldnt be killing anymore lol

Sorry people... My grandmother always told me the truth hurts

Last edited by Mr. Longbeard; 11-21-2011 at 09:29 AM.
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