Bow Hunting Contradictions
Sent to Philadelphia Inquirer 10/29/03
In his op-ed “In defense of bow hunting,” Scott Benek
contradicts himself when talking about how animals are killed with arrows.
Mr. Benek wrote "Most animals succumb within seconds. Rapid loss of blood
decreases oxygen flow to the brain, causing blackout and quick death."
Several lines later, he wrote "How else can one explain the times I have
shot a deer, only to have it jump a few steps, then start feeding again?"
Mr. Benek - which one is it? Do animals succumb within seconds, or do they
jump up and start feeding again, unaware that they were hit? Contradictions
such as these make one believe that hunters will say anything to justify
Mr. Benek states that "tree stands offer the safest way to
shoot..." If tree stands work so well for archers why do so many shooters
fail to use them? If shooting from tree stands is safer than other forms of
hunting, rifle hunters should be required to use them, especially since
bullets travel so much farther than arrows and therefore have a greater
capacity to cause an accident.
Mr. Benek was correct when he said "Many studies have been
done on the number of deer that archers shoot but fail to recover." One such
study was made public by the New Jersey Division of Fish and Game. In their
report An Assessment of Deer Hunting in New Jersey, the NJ Division of Fish
and Game documented the percentage of deer that bow hunters are unable to
track down: "Langenau (1986) found that archery deer hunters were estimated
to have retrieved 43% of the deer hit by arrows..." This article implies
that 57% of deer hit with arrows are not collected by experienced hunters.
Reality is that these animals will either bleed to death or slowly die after
the arrow wound becomes infected. At least Mr. Benek comes clean about many
hunters hitting and not recovering the animals, and he sheds some light on
the fact that hunters will not admit this.
Mr. Benek also states that the deer herd in Pennsylvania
is increasing. Yes, the deer herd continues to grow because the Pennsylvania
Game Commission, in their quest for increased revenue earned through the
sale of hunting licenses, puts hunting opportunities before wildlife and is
enlarging the herd.
When the truth is told, hunting is exposed to be a violent
practice that destroys wildlife and has no place in a modern, ethical
society. For information on how state wildlife “management” agencies
manipulate wild animal populations to benefit hunters, please visit our
website at http://www.all-creatures.org/cash/
Joe Miele, Vice President
The Committee to Abolish Sport Hunting
New Paltz, NY 12561