With hunting season in full swing, the woods are full of anxious hunters who are watching and waiting for the perfect chance to take a shot at their prey. Although hunting season is an exciting time for the outdoor enthusiast, it is imperative that safety be top priority. In terms of safety, it is always true that an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.
- Firearms should be unloaded when not be used.
- Always keep your firearm’s barrel of pointed in a safe direction.
- Don’t rely on the safety of your gun. Treat any firearm as if they are loaded and ready to fire.
- Use proper ammunition.
- Set your target and what is beyond it.
- Handle your gun with care if it fails to fire when the trigger is pulled.
- Don’t shoot without wearing eye and ear protection.
- Confirm that the barrel is clear of obstructions before you shoot.
- Have your gun serviced regularly and don’t alter or modify it any way.
- Learn clearly the mechanical and handling characteristics of the firearm that you are using.
- Make sure the gun is unloaded before you clean it.
- Treat a misfire as if the gun could fire at any moment.
- Don’t smoke in the proximity of a muzzleloader.
- Avoid using alcohol or drugs while handling a firearm.
- Always keep your finger out of the trigger guard and off the trigger until you are ready to shoot.
- Never hoist a loaded firearm into a stand.
- Never climb a tree, cross a fence, or stand or jump a ditch while handling a loaded gun.
- Don’t load a firearm until ready to use it.
- Watch your muzzle so the other hunter doesn’t have to.
- Remember to unload firearms before riding in any vehicle like ATVs.
- Wear hunter orange so you can be seen easily. If you take a dog with you, it also needs to wear bright colors.
During the spring turkey hunting season of this year, hunters killed a total of 77 wild turkeys in Concord, the capital city of the U.S. state of New Hampshire, part of 5,719 birds that were taken in the whole state, a 12 percent increase over last year and the most since the state has been keeping track.
Some increases were startling: Youth hunt weekend, as people of all ages can hunt turkeys if they are accompanied by a licensed hunter, caused a total harvest of 500 turkeys, a big increase from the 76 birds that were taken during that same period of time in 2019.
The season occupied most of May and the increase might reflect the eagerness of the hunters to get into the woods as stay-at-home regulations due to the Covid-19 pandemic reduced the variety of options for them to choose to do.
Large gobblers were abundant this spring, according to New Hampshire Fish and Game. The heaviest birds recorded this season were about from 24 to 29 pounds and totally 61 gobblers weighing 24 or 25 pounds were checked at one of the check-in stations around the state.
Turkeys were wiped out of New Hampshire by hunting for more than a century till a couple dozen were reintroduced in 1976. Since then, their population has increased to 40,000 people, making this become one of the most successful wild species re-introductions in the United States.
Towns with big numbers of turkeys taken during the spring season consisted of 84 in Weare, 77 in Concord, 75 each in Claremont and Gilmanton, and 73 in Belmont. A total of 24 towns recorded at least 50 birds harvested.
Most turkey eggs typically hatch from late May to mid of June. New Hampshire Fish and Game is again asking for the help of the public in monitoring observations of turkey broods through its annual turkey brood survey, which runs through August 31.