COLUMN: If you're hunting, be safe, legal

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By Brooke Tindall

Ah, going outside on a cool morning just before daylight with your father, mother or other family member.

Watching carefully and being as quiet as you can as you listen closely to the rustle of leaves. Then getting an adrenaline rush as you see a deer come out of the woods.

While not everyone is a hunter, some of us are and it’s always exciting. I’m a hunter. My dad and I go during the season and we know the importance of being safe, legal and responsible.

If you’re a hunter it’s important to be familiar with whatever you’re using, gun or bow.

Bow season is currently in, but gun seasons aren’t far off. Taking a hunter safety course is an excellent idea. All hunters should take it and get their orange card.

If you’re hunting you should also wear your orange vest, cap or other clothing items to allow other hunter’s know that someone is out there.

Hunting accidents happen every year, and they can all be prevented. Knowing what you’re doing is so important and can’t be stressed enough. No one wants to hear about a situation where someone is hurt or even killed.

Keeping it legal also is very important. Hunters sometimes get a bad reputation due to being illegal or not being responsible. Being legal means getting your orange card, deer tags and licenses, getting confirmation numbers, telling the truth, using the right gun if it’s a certain season, and making sure you have permission to hunt if it’s not your land. When someone does something illegal it ruins it for everyone, and no one wants that.

Something that always bugs me around hunting season is irresponsible hunters. I’m talking about the kind of hunters that hunt for the size of the rack, and leave the rest sitting in a field somewhere. It isn’t a sport, just killing deer for bragging rights. Yes, it’s nice to get a big buck every now and then, but if you do don’t leave it in a field. Take it and give it to someone who does like deer meat or use it for yourself.

There are a million other things to do besides just leaving it, and don’t take the “leftovers” and toss them in a creek or in some abandoned lot somewhere.

People find it and get upset, which is very understandable — we’d all be upset if it happened.

I like to hunt, but I like knowing that all hunters will be safe and responsible. Things like this can turn so tragic so quick, knowing a little bit about what you’re doing and reminding yourself prevents a lot of it.

So, happy hunting and be careful. God bless!

Brooke Tindall is a teen columnist for The Anderson News. She is a freshman at Anderson County High School and can be reached at btindall95@gmail.com.