Newsletter - Animal Writes sm
24 September 2000 Issue

By Jean & Mike Gonska - [email protected]

Hunting is NOT a sport or a game. The definition of sport includes 3 criteria:
1) All of the players have consented to participate;
2) All of the players are equally equipped;
3) All of the players know the rules.

Any TRUE sport like basketball or tennis would meet these criteria. However, the hunter uses a weapon to stalk, prey upon and injure or kill a defenseless, unsuspecting animal who is in his own home minding his own business. This scenario is no different than a person relaxing in the comfort of his living room and suddenly and unexpectedly being shot at by a stranger from a nearby rooftop.

Hunters often use the poor excuse that they are reducing deer populations, when in actuality they are a cause of overpopulation. Deer populations are manipulated by wildlife agencies paid for by hunters for the purpose of producing maximum targets and revenue. Make no mistake, a state's deer herd is a "cash crop" to the state. The deer herd is intentionally cultivated and harvested in the same way a farmer grows his crops. This is done by selectively killing the males, thereby skewing the natural 1:1 sex ratio. In some areas, hunting has caused the sex ratio to rise to as many as 25 females for each male. Deer are polygamous and a male will breed with as many females as are available. With this female to male imbalance, more breeding females are left available to increase the herd size. Fish and game reports show that even when female deer are killed, the remaining females compensated and had increased birth rates that not only replaced the ones killed, but increased the overall size of the herd. Despite all of the hunting and killing, deer populations increase, and that is exactly what hunting commissions planned.

When left alone, God and nature manage populations of every species via natural methods such as survival of the fittest. Instead, hunters usually target and kill the fittest, strongest animals, leaving the weak. Deer birth rates are also directly related to their environment and food supply. A herd that is stressed by overpopulation and a short food supply has a very low fecundity rate (successful pregnancy and births). When overall deer herds are reduced and there's plenty of food to go around, the successful pregnancy and birth rates increase and twin and triplet births often occur. Nature figured this out millions of years before hunters in orange coats showed up.

Hunters also use the excuse to kill that weak deer "might" starve, and that's a cruel way to die, so instead, hunters injure thousands of deer and leave them to suffer in agony; and kill others, dismember their bodies and eat their flesh in order to "save" the deer from cruelties. Hunters don't shoot scrawny starving deer anyway, they target big healthy ones.

Hunting actually can cause deer starvation. Deer build fat reserves during the spring, summer and fall that is meant to carry them through the winter. When the hunting season starts, deer are forced to flee and run from place to place which causes them to lose these fat reserves. If game commissions and hunters were really hunting because they were concerned about starving deer, then hunting seasons would be in the late winter and early spring when the food supply is at the lowest. Deer don't starve in the hunting months of November or December.

Animals are living creatures that breathe like we do, their hearts beat like ours, they suffer and feel pain, their blood appears identical to ours, and they have the same desire to live that we do. Rather than taking pride in a murdered animal strapped across a car or a decapitated head of a peaceful creature hung on a wall, show your appreciation for nature and animals and shoot only with your camera and preserve the beauty of all living beings. Choose a compassionate lifestyle and leave the animals alone!

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