Joe Becomes a Hunter

Last year, I wrote about mentoring a new hunter.  It’s harder to bring new hunters into the gun culture now than when I was a child. When I started hunting at age 11, with an air rifle on the farm in northern Wisconsin I grabbed a gun, stepped out the door, and was hunting. My father had carefully told me what pests I could hunt. In a year, I was using a real rifle, a .22. My father taught me to shoot, but most of my early hunting was alone or in the company of one or both of my younger brothers, who at three and five years younger than I, were not yet allowed to carry a gun themselves. Every boy that I knew hunted, or wanted to. The idea that a 12 year old was not responsible enough to carry a gun around the woods . . .

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A Reader Warns: Do NOT Go Duck Hunting!

TTAG commentator Puyallup Devil_Doc writes:

As a duck hunting addict, let me just warn you away from it now. Don’t do it. Seriously. You’ll start off saying, “I’ll just go shoot some ducks, have a little fun… No big deal”. But it will become an obsession. Every time you see a lake, you’ll be looking for ducks. Every time you see a bird, you’ll be double checking to see if it’s a duck. Every time you see a duck, you’ll be checking to see where it lands, and bugging landowners for permission to hunt . . .

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First Time Duck Hunter: How I got a Duck Hunt and a Super Black Eagle II


It seems that the Axis deer herd my parents texted me about is here to stay as I’ve been getting nearly daily updates from the home front that the herd is seen every morning when they head out to work. Obviously, this is not helping alleviate the hunting itch. That’s why hunting buddies exist. So I texted my pal Will who lives down in Corpus Christi. Will and I grew up together, he’s the guy that introduced me to hunting, and has been present for basically every big hunting moment of my life. So I shot him a message to let him know that the Axis were back in force . . .

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In Search of . . . The Huntable Lion

Ms Bachman takes a lion (courtesy

“Science shows that hunting older male lions has no long-term effect on the sustainability of lion populations.” That’s the lead from the Dallas Safari Club’s press release Tanzania, Dallas Safari Club to Host Lion-Aging Seminar. [Full text after the jump.] I’m a little leery of any line of reasoning that relies on “science” that doesn’t link to the scientific study or studies upon which it depends. Especially when the reasoner has skin in the game. Or game to skin. But here’s hoping that shooting “older, non-pride lions” is a win – win: lion populations remain stable and more hunters get to hunt lions (bringing more money into Tanzania). Oh, and the six-year-old thing is not a legal cut-off; there’s a graduated penalty system for shooting younger lions. In other words, if you have the money, it’s chocks away. Good idea? . . .

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Question of the Day: Hunt Much?

NHF Day logo  72d

September 27 is National Hunting and Fishing Day (press release after the jump). Established in 1972, NH&F day’s not as old as National Doughnut Day or as energizing as National Petroleum Day. But it’s a good excuse to commune with nature, harvest some meat and enjoy a pursuit as old as humanity itself. Sure, A&M may be playing South Carolina on the 27th, but you can always DVR the game and keep the radio off in the car. So what will you do? Dip a line? Down a duck? Bag a buck? When was the last time you took your shooting irons hunting? When you going again? . . .

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How Do You Shoot a Blue Elephant?

With a blue elephant gun. How do you shoot a white elephant? You hold its nose until it turns blue and shoot it with a blue elephant gun. And how do you shoot an elephant with one of the most expensive guns ever made? You buy this piece from its owner (good luck with that) or commission a master rifle maker to make you something similar. Worth it? That depends on how you feel about elephant hunting and how much money you have to your name. Oh, and if you live in New York you may not be able to sell the gun, ever (regardless of the fact that the ivory is from a long-extinct Wooly Mammoth). Does that matter? [h/t TP]


Strolling Through Holland & Holland’s London Gun Room Collection


Oxford Circus has long been one of the premier shopping centers of London, but if you start walking southwest of that extremely busy crossroads the crowds slowly dissipate and the stores become increasingly expensive. This is the Mayfair area of London, one of the only places where I have seen a Bugatti dealership across the street from an Aston Martin dealership. It’s home to many of the world’s biggest luxury brands. Nestled in the middle of all that opulence is the London headquarters for Holland & Holland, makers of bespoke hunting rifles and shotguns since 1835. Behind the clothing-filled front rooms and down a back staircase of that shop lies one of London’s best kept secrets and the most fascinating assortment of objects I have ever seen: The Collection . . .

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Texts That Cause Me to Curse

Axis deer

I was at work, dialing into a conference bridge, gearing up to talk technology, whilst wearing khakis when my phone buzzed on my desk. I looked down to see a text from my dad that said, “Mom and I just saw 15 Axis by the back fence line.” I let out an audible four letter expletive right before my desk phone beeped to let me know that I was live on a conference bridge. A close call by any other name… Continue Reading


Question of the Day: Should America Ban Elephant Ivory Sales?

I got an email blast yesterday from John F. Calvelli of the Wildlife Conservation Society

Dear Robert,

First, the good news: On Tuesday, New Jersey Governor Chris Christie signed the first state ivory ban into law! [ED: click here for A3128]

It was a huge moment for elephants, but where state lawmakers are stepping up, Congress could be caving in.

Attacks on the proposed federal ivory ban are intensifying. Bills in both the House and Senate would kill the federal ban and could block states from passing their own bans, effectively repealing portions of the New Jersey State ban.

We need to make sure lawmakers get the message: Americans support banning ivory in overwhelming numbers. Stand behind the ban!

Yes, well, the way I see it . . .

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Gun Review: Ruger American Rimfire


I’m starting to feel like a real old timer with my endless rambling about the good old days of cheap and plentiful .22 LR. While some parts of the country are seeing the most popular rimfire cartridge back in stock, our brethren in other areas are more likely to find hen’s teeth than affordable .22 LR. But I’m an optimist, and given the long term traffic our gun reviews get, my hope is that years from now, someone will read this review and laugh about those dark days of short supply for .22LR. If you’re reading this in the future, and looking for an affordable, flexible bolt gun in .22 LR, you very well could have found it in the Ruger American Rimfire . . .

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Facebook Deletes Hunting Images from Kendall Jones’ Page But Leaves ‘Kill Kendall Jones’ Page Online

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You may have heard about the controversy surrounding teenage cheerleader Kendall Jones’ Facebook page. Ms. Jones likes to hunt exotic animals. When she published pictures of herself posing with her kills on Facebook, animal rights activists went batshit crazy (not to coin a phrase). Responding to the firearms-related furor, Facebook pulled some of her photos. The Zuckerbergians told they did so because they reckoned the pics broke the rule against “graphic images shared for sadistic effect or to celebrate or glorify violence,” as outlined in Facebook Community Standards.  Yes, well, what about the Facebook page Kill Kendall Jones, which contains the exact same images Facebook deleted? Enquiring minds want to know. [h/t MC and Twitchy] UPDATE: Facebook has finally removed the original Kill Kendall Jones page. Another one has popped up here.


CA Wild Pigs + Hunting Restrictions = Damnation

“Water destined for 3,000 thirsty farms burst through an irrigation canal just east of Sanger on Sunday,” reports. “The water flooded adjacent fields and forced the temporary evacuation of nearby homes. Repairs to the canal and cleanup are now underway. The Irrigation District is blaming wild pigs for this flooding. While the canal was dry, the animals apparently dug burrows into the canal bank. When water was put in for the first time Sunday, a section of the bank gave way — cutting water to more than 100,000 acres of farmland and giving one grower way too much.” How much? Anyway, TTAG reader GC notes “Too bad there are so many hunting restrictions, lead ammo restrictions and the requirement to buy a pig tag to take these things. Guess the idiots in Kommiefornia are happy to have the devastation caused by pigs.” /sarcasm.