Where do you draw the line ?


New member
Dec 23, 2000
The controversy of "is it hunting" has been raging as long as I've been on the Internet, but every different situation is different. So where do YOU draw the line.
The extremes;
It's -20% and Greenhorn hikes fifteen miles, on public land barefooted in the snow, climbs fifty feet up a tree and then jumps on the back of a 400 class bull and kills it with chopsticks. THATS HUNTING

I win the lotto, and go to a farm in a non-elk state, and pay 20K to shoot an identical bull in a fifty foot square pen while it's eating out of a metal feed bin. THAT AIN'T HUNTING ( I don't care what you say )

But in between, there's everything from fenced Indian reservations that cover thousands of square miles, guided and non-guided hunts on private ranches that range from a few hundred acers to a few hundred miles.
"Wild" animals that are so used to the farmers truck that they don't move a muscle when he drives up with a hunter each fall.
A friend of mine recently went on a guided elk hunt on a ranch that borders an Indian reservation. The reservation holds lots of bulls, but dosn't have much water so the ranch has several stock tanks within a half mile of the fence and plants the border fields with alpha. Hunters are placed on stands overlooking trails to the tanks. Needless to say, he tagged a nice bull. I shook his hand and said congratulations, but it didn't sound like that much fun to me.
How about you ?

<FONT COLOR="#800080" SIZE="1">[ 01-17-2004 02:05: Message edited by: Anaconda ]</font>
To me it's pretty simple...killing an animal that is "owned" by somebody, is HARVESTING, not hunting. A good clue would be the tag in that elk's ear with a number on it. It is hunting if the animal killed is WILD, doesn't make a bit of difference how easy or difficult the hunt was, that is hunting. Well...now that I think about it, in some instances, I believe there could be animals that are fenced in, although technically not "owned" by the landowner, I wouldn't consider these wild animals. I would think of these more as wildlife stolen from the public by a private individual. I'm not even sure if this is legal, or if it happens, probably depends on the state, and I would guess this would happen mostly with whitetail deer, and probably only in Texas. As far as elk go, I think the privately-owned elk = NOT HUNTING, wild elk = HUNTING rule is true.
Its not that simple to me. Hunting wild elk in Pennsylvania is not hunting. I would not do it and I could afford it if I was drawn. A big ranch could be hunting to me, I'd need all the details.
i have hunted hogs on pay hunts several times, choppers obviousley was free range, no fence the other 2 places were fenced. one of the fenced places had WILD hogs with a fear of humans and living in a natural type environment and even in 200 acres you had to hunt these hogs. the other place was easy access terrain most of which a wild hog wouldnt want to step foot in except that is where the food source was. my son shot at the same hog 3 times within 5 minutes and that wasnt hunting. then again for 150 bucks you cant buy the meat so i say it is.............. freezer filling.
To me hunting is a lifestyle. I beleive you have to be a hunter to enjoy hunting. Anyone can go to an enclosure have the "guide" show him which animal to shoot, have his picture taken with his "harvest" let the guide clean it up, have the butcher wrap it, write the checks and go home.
I can see the use of guides when your in a new area. When my sons and I went to Maine this year, we paid for a guide. We didn't know anything about the area. What our guide did was take us out, show us the area, drop us in what he "thought" would be a productive area, then he left. We didn't see him again until it was time to go back to the camp. We would tell him our stratigies, he would either agree or disagree. His main job was to make sure these flatlanders didn't get too lost. We helped carry wood back to the camp, haul water, etc. He was more like a hunting buddy than a guide. The only thing we didn't help with was the cooking and dishes (he insisted on that chore himself). We had a good time, seen Moose, partridge,a wolf, pine martens, and some doe. But nothing to shoot. We froze our asses off for 6 days. Didn't kill anything except a field mouse (story upon request)and had a great time. THATS HUNTING.

I hope this wasn't too rambling.
I took a 14 year old boy to a ranch hunt, this boy had cancer. This was his last opertunity. We hunted for 3 days and he never laid eyes on what we went there for. He never got to expieriance the one thing he craved. Sometimes I wish that hunt was a caned hunt so he could have acomplished his goal.

since that hunt, I have taken several others on hunts with about a 60% success rate. To me thats not good enough. If it was my son or daughter and that was their dream and they were limmited by physical ability I would want the deer tied to a tree if thats what it took. Where do we draw the line? Does it have to be your child, Wife, brother, cousin or best friends child for you to understand what I'm talking about?

I do feel that there needs to be guidlines around the amount of land the animals have to hide on ( say 500 acres ) and how many animals can be on that land ( per carring compasity ) and there has to be places where man can't get to for the animals to retreat.

To flat out say its not hunting without trying it is wrong any way you cut it.

Thats just my 2-cents nothing written in stone.

I understand your point Slydog, but that is the exception to the rule ( or lack of rules as the case may be )
If a kid with cancer wants to climb into a cardboard box and be pushed down the driveway and call it a trip to the moon, I'm all for it. They ARE exceptions for thoses with disabilitys everywhere in society.
But what about for the rest of us.
I don't have a hard opinion on this issue (yet) but I'm leaning towards the " it aint hunting if the animal is owned or fenced in" line of thought.
I will ask you only this, Have you gone and expierianced this kind of hunting?

If not please reserve your judgment, in all fairness to what we are talking about.

I think its only fair to say there are good operations as well as bad, but there are good guides as well as bad, good Doctors as well as bad and so on and so on. When we judge by hear say or by public opinion we become what we fight everyday in order to keep our God given rights.
After all aren't we, the hunter, responcible for where we hunt. Don't we all know right from wrong. Yes there are ranches that operate in the shade, if you will, but there are way more ranches who do it right and to lump all ranches into one pile is just unfair and un-American. Unfortunately it is becoming the normal way to act or react to things we have no knowlage of.

I understand how it sounds and how it looks put to you from a purist point of view. There are those who think only flintlocks are muzzel loaders and those who think only long bows are real archery equipment. This type of tunnel vision is what devides our nation and also the hunters who live in it.
The same type people want to stop you and I from hunting public lands and once they get that far will they want your guns and your freedoms. The question was where do we draw the line. I don't agree with hound hunting but I will defend your right to hunt that way if you so desire. I don't agree with the use of snairs in traping but I will defend your right to do so if you want. OK, so you don't agree with hunting behind a fence would you not defend my right to if I was so inclined, where do we draw the line and do we draw it only if it serves our wants and needs..

Just some food for thought


<FONT COLOR="#800080" SIZE="1">[ 01-18-2004 20:43: Message edited by: Slydog ]</font>
hey Oak, give it a rest. I mean come on now, this is a good LEGAL business to be in. And here is how sad our society is, people like you can dictate my business life. I am so glad that here in N.Y. our governor had the balls to put "you guys" in thier place. There is alot of people who don't base thier life around hunting and save all thier vacation to go hunting. should they be deprived of the right to shoot a "trophy" for some sort of experience. I will agree with you, it is not the same as driving out west and shooting a bull in the wild. but alot of people don't want to do that. it is thier right.

what are you so afriad of, you guys that hate it so much? have you guys ever enjoyed a beer with someone who has shot a 400 class bull? i bet most of you haven't. so, how does this hunting really affect your life to be so pissed off at it?

and you guys that don't see anything wrong with it, I LOVE YOU
Elkfarmer, I'll give it a rest on here. I think both sides have long ago made their points. But I'm not going to give it a rest here in CO until game farms are a thing of the past. There's a reason for game farms being banned in Wyoming, and it doesn't have anything to do with "people like me" wanting to dictate the life of "people like you."

You know, there was an elk/red deer hybrid with a tag in it's ear killed several years ago by a hunter, just a few miles from where you like to hunt elk in CO. That's probably pretty good for the wild population, eh? But I know, "people like me" shouldn't be dictating your life.

Ok, I'll drop the whole subject now, unless someone else replies to me.

<BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>so, how does this hunting really affect your life to be so pissed off at it?

Read the quote by Valerius Geist at the bottom of Colorado Oak's posts...that pretty much sums it up.
WH, I will agree that Dr. Giest is probably the leading authority on biological and habitual learning regarding ungulates, but I don't think that his opinion on the future state of world or national or state issues holds any more water than anyone elses. He does not take any part in forming the laws of the United States or any one of the individual states. Afterall, he is a Canadian citizen. I value his opinion, but do not consider it to be the last word on politics, and you can bet that politics is what will make the decision you hold in question.

I hope Idaho does go ahead with a potential banning on game farms like has been discussed, thats where I draw my line. If you "need" to kill something that bad and call it a trophy get in the cattle business. A nice texas longhorn would make a dandy "trophy" and be about as much fun to kill as a tame elk. If you can get your elk tame enough you won't even need to use a gun you could just thump them in the head with a hammer when they come to the grain bucket in your other hand.
I do not have to try something to know that it is wrong. I was blessed with a brain, logic, and the ability to use them to make judgements. That is what separates me from the Apes. Apperantly some of us must not have evolved as far...

I can not imagine how much Hate and Anger must be wrapped up in these 14 year old Cancer kids, if they want to kill a deer tied to a tree. That is truly sad if that horrible disease strips all levels of decency from these kids.
Slydog, you crack me up!

Your poor helpless hunter whose last dying wish is to blow away a tame elk stories are making me want to puke.

I guess the real question is what kind of hunting is the most satisfying to a guy, which is obviously going to depend on the individual. But I would hope that a sure thing captive elk shoot wouldn't be that great of an experience to most human beings.

For me personally, being driven out to assasinate a domestic bull elk would rank right up there with knitting. The trophy itself would be about as meaningful as a really lumpy turd full of corn and peanuts. I mean, "Hey cool, come look at this.... FLUSH."

But Slydog, if that's what makes your pee-pee hard, then by all means...


<FONT COLOR="#800080" SIZE="1">[ 01-19-2004 07:40: Message edited by: Greenhorn ]</font>
<BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>I think its only fair to say there are good operations as well as bad... <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>Nope, elk don't belong behind a fence, period. It has nothing to do with which way they're being exploited.

OK lets see if I got this right. The big time western hunters and part time guides say it's a hunt if I pay a rancher in Wyoming and he takes me out in the field behind his house and I shoot a big elk thats munching on a hay bale. Since the fields not fenced in, it doesn't matter that I shot an elk from 30 yards away out the pickup window......it's a trophy and I should be proud of myself for shooting a free ranging elk.
I don't think you quite have the idea Doug. The scenerio you mentioned would be like finding a big fat drunk chick in the bar and laying your favorite line on her. Hey, Fat drunk chicks need loving too. To some guys, that fat drunk chick might be something to brag about. She is still a free ranger and there is the possibility that you could still screw it up and get shot down, or another guy might put his tag on her first.
On the other hand, at the Chicken Ranch, you walk in, pick out the one you want, lay down the cash, and BANG BANG FART BANG!!!

<FONT COLOR="#800080" SIZE="1">[ 01-19-2004 16:19: Message edited by: Silent But Deadly ]</font>
So if I am reading this right, the bear I got last spring was all bullshit. It was a free range bear and I hunted long and hard last year in search of a bear. I was lucky enough to fire up the grill, have a nice steak dinner on my deck and two hours later shoot and skin my first bear. It was just as exciting for me to get the bear off my friggin deck as it would have been if I got it 10 miles back in the mountains. No different than the scenereo that Doug pointed out, just a different animal. BTW, I also have deer, elk and moose in the yard on a regular basis and no fence. You can say this was not hunting if you want and that you would not take it or anything else you want, but it was my first bear and I feel I was pretty friggin lucky.
now here is a rip off, Ranching For Wildlife. what a croc, but i bet the guys here that oppose fence hunting don't see anything wrong with that. "free ranging"..
I forgot. my first trip to CO. we went to the local butcher shop and on his wall was this huge 360 bull, other wall a 380, on top of the cooler was his dads 370. wow, i was impressed. then he told me about his freind that gets all these tags for RFW, drove his truck around this guys land and picked out the biggest bull, 2 years in a row., he got skill..what about the bear shot over a bait pile or treed by dogs, how about caribou hunting, i think that goes like this.... GUIDE:nope,nope,nope,nope,nope,nope,nope,
nope, theres a big one...
now, just for the record. i do plan on sitting over a bait and shooting a bear, and i would love to watch 100 caribou go by waiting for the guide to tell me to shoot that one.

i consider myself a very ethical person, I don't shoot everything that walks by me, cause i enjoy watching them. i enjoy spending times with my kidds hunting and we all enjoy the elk.

enough said for now, i think...

<FONT COLOR="#800080" SIZE="1">[ 01-19-2004 18:13: Message edited by: elkfarmer ]</font>