Deer Hunting Safety

When it comes to hunter safety, learn it, preach it, and – most of all – practice it yourself, because it’s easy to get overconfident and become careless. Always remain conscious of safety when you head to the woods.

Gun safety:
1. Become familiar with your firearm. Know how to carry it, load it, unload it, and know what to expect when you pull the trigger.
2. Always assume every gun is loaded and always point the muzzle in a safe direction. Never point your gun at another person.
3. Never put your finger on the trigger unless you intend to shoot.
4. Your firearm has a safety. Keep it in the ‘On’ position until you intend to shoot.
5. Be sure of your target and what is behind it before pulling the trigger.

There are so many different ways for a hunter to get injured or worse during the deer season, but more injuries and deaths are caused by falls from treestands during the deer season than any other type of accident.

Treestand safety:
1. Always carry a cell phone and keep it on yourself. Don’t put it in a pack that you may take off and hang in the tree because if you fall you want your phone readily available to call for help.
2. Always install and maintain treestands with at least one other person.
3. Check all your steps and straps and replace anything that is worn or weathered.
4. Always wear a full body harness when in a treestand. Wear it properly.
5. Always use a rope to pull up your gun or bow.
6. Be aware of your surroundings and never shoot towards another hunter.

Wear Blaze Orange!

The visible portion of a cap and outer clothing above the waist, excluding sleeves and gloves, must be blaze orange when hunting or trapping during any open season where deer may be taken by firearms (including special hunts, early antlerless, youth seasons and muzzleloader). Blaze orange includes a camouflage pattern of at least 50 percent blaze orange within each square foot.

Some safety tips for nonhunters:

  • Wear bright clothing. Choose colors that stand out, like red, orange or green, and avoid white, blacks, browns, earth-toned greens and animal-colored clothing. Blaze orange vests and hats are advisable.
  • Don’t forget to protect pets. Get an orange vest for an accompanying dog.
  • Make noise. Whistle, sing or carry on a conversation when walking to alert hunters that someone is in the area. Sound carries well across woods and forests, and hunters should listen for any sounds of animal movement.
  • Be courteous. Don’t make unnecessary noise to disturb wildlife. Avoid confrontations.
  • Make presence known. If a nonhunter hears shooting, the person should raise their voice and let hunters know they’re in vicinity.
  • Know the dates of hunting seasons. Learn about where and when hunting is taking place.
  • If hunting makes a nonhunter uneasy, the nonhunter should choose a hike in a location where hunting is not allowed.
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