Hunting skills can be learned at any age. Teaching a young hunter how to safely and effectively harvest an animal will help create the next generation of hunters. Make sure you’re giving them the tools they need to succeed and remind them that staying safe is just as important as making the harvest. Below are five things to remember when you’re hunting with a youth hunter.
1. Teach Them That Safety is Key
A hunting mentor should teach youth hunters about hunting safety from the beginning. They should know gun and/or bowhunting safety, basic survival skills, and how to climb a ladder and wear a treestand harness. Always show them the safe way to do things so that they learn good safety habits early on in their hunting career. Our ‘Scout’ blinds are safe and easy to get in and out of on the ground and our accessories help make elevating Stump blinds safe as well. The Steel Ladder makes it easy for youth hunters to climb into the Stump blind. The steps are textured to avoid slipping and it comes with a handrail for added safety. Accufire is one of the accessories of the hunter; it helps them to have accuracy in range, and, during the night, they use a thermal optic, or night vision.
2. Teach Them Proper Form
Hunting with a youth hunter is a great opportunity to provide mentorship and help them perfect their shooting technique. Our Stump blinds have plenty of space, so you’ll be able to stand next to them and show them how to properly draw the bow and what angle they should be shooting at without crowding them.
3. Emphasize the Importance of Making Good Shots
Before you go on an actual hunt, practice shooting at 3D targets from your Stump blind. This will help the youth hunter become familiar with the shot process and make them more comfortable during the real hunt. You will be able to observe their shots and see where their areas for improvement might be. If their shots are inconsistent, give them constructive guidance and let them know what they can improve on. Let them know that you’re not just being picky, that in order to make an ethical harvest they have to be sure their shot is lethal and that they need to avoid a shot that will simply wound the animal. Teach them the importance of a good shot and how a lethal shot is humane and shows respect for the animal.
4. Let Them Have a Shot
Once they’ve gotten their technique down and have shown you that they are capable of making an ethical shot, let them have the next shot opportunity. You’ll be right there next to them to help, if needed, but let them take the shot on their own. Once they’re a confident hunter, you’ll be able to hunt alongside them, out of different windows in the Stump blind. Our Stump blinds are perfect for youth hunters because they can use them from childhood into adulthood.
5. Encourage Their Efforts
A young hunter might get frustrated or discouraged if they don’t see any deer or miss their shots. Let them know that sometimes a hunter goes all day without seeing a deer and that’s just the nature of hunting. Take the opportunity to teach them about scouting techniques for next time. Make a game out of trying to find rubs, scrapes, bedding areas, or other signs of deer. Getting the youth hunter actively involved in every aspect of the hunting process, including scouting, will help them feel like they’re truly a part of it, instead of just an observer.
Hunting with a young hunter is a great opportunity for mentorship and to encourage the next generation of hunters. Teach them the proper skills in all aspects of hunting: safety, shooting and scouting. These fundamentals will help them become successful hunters for years to come.
What tips do you have for hunting with a young hunter? Let us know in the comments below!