Did you know?
Suburban deer hunting is growing now more than it has in the past twenty years. Many factors are contributing to this growth like the Locavore movement, the organic movement, and a better education on the positive impact of hunting. Yet what we are seeing hunter numbers decline in rural areas and an increase in suburban hunting.
Most of the experts agree that hunting in rural America has declined due to a change in work ethics and a difficult recession. There was a time when camp life and traveling for deer hunting were common practice. These days, few have the ability to get the necessary time off or the financial means to own a camp. As a result, families that have hunted for a generations are having a hard time passing on their hunting traditions.
A negative view of suburban deer hunting has hurt the hunting community. Mainstream media outlets like Outdoor Life write articles with titles like “Why I’ll Never be an Urban Hunter.” In some cases, the tradition is failing because people refuse to adapt to new hunting environments. This stubbornness leaves an older generation behind and the future of hunting with people who did not grow up with it.
Deer populations in rural areas have dropped.
Hard winters are to blame in areas like northern New England, as are questionable logging practices. In the west, a number of diseases have taken their toll. All this adds up to unappealing odds for hunting in big woods and farms. In doing a little research, we found that suburban states had hunter-to-harvest ratios over double that of rural areas. Suddenly a walk just beyond the borders of our backyard looks quite a bit more appealing than an expensive and time consuming trip.
Suburban deer hunting offers another desirable factor. Hunting in your local area means that you can use your spare time to scout, set up treestands, and put in the leg work necessary to be a successful hunter. You simply cannot do this at a camp hours away from work and home.
The boom in suburban deer populations is a blessing for so many Americans. An increase in population numbers has allowed a new culture to take root in places like the northeast. All these movements expand the knowledge and culture of hunting in places unthinkable twenty years ago.
Human development is the final factor that makes suburban deer hunting so important for the future of hunting. We are expanding. As we build cities, pave roads, and tear down forests, we increase the suburban paradise for both human and whitetail. Suburban deer hunting is the future of whitetail culture in the United States whether we like it or not.