Hunting Accident File > Safe Hunting

IL: Many hunting accidents...

November 21, 2009

The first weekend of the 2009 Illinois Firearm Deer Season began Friday morning 30 minutes before sunrise and will conclude today a half-hour after sunset. The second Illinois Firearm Deer Season will be Dec. 3-6.

All successful hunters are required to call in or go online to report their harvest by 10 p.m. the day they harvested their deer. Harvest figure will be tallied in the next few days with results available later.

In 2008, Illinois hunters harvested 106,018 deer during the seven-day firearm deer season. The Illinois Department of Natural Resources has issued more than 360,000 deer tags for the 2009 firearm season. There are more hunters in the Illinois fields and timbers this weekend than at any other time. For safety reasons all hunters (with the exception of waterfowl hunters) are required to wear “Blaze Orange” during firearm deer weekends. Blaze Orange is a STOP sign for hunters targeting game.

Last year there were 38 reported hunting accidents in Illinois. Thirty were the result of tree stand falls and five of those resulted in fatalities. So far during 2009, there have been 13 reported accidents in Illinois, of which six have involved falls from tree stands.

Agricultural reports indicate about 50 percent of the state’s corn crops are still in the field. This will have an impact on this first deer season’s harvest figures. Deer use corn fields for shelter and food. Areas with standing corn can make deer hunting very difficult.

Oller makes use of time Kids learn good and bad things from their parents. With a day off work some adults will lie around the house watching TV and become the classic couch potato. With idle time kids will lie around watching TV or playing computer games. No exercise and nothing accomplished — and they wonder why folks are overweight in America. Other adults are active with their free time and their kids pick-up on that, too.

Veteran’s Day is a national holiday for government employees. Schools are closed and kids have that free time to do nothing — or something.

Thirteen-year-old Nathan Oller from rural Victoria had some free time this last Veterans Day. That afternoon he decided to take his bow to a deer stand on his folks’ property to try and harvest a deer. He was by himself but Nathan has been brought up in the countryside and is comfortable with wild surroundings. He had never taken a deer with his bow — but one never will until he tries.

And if you don’t succeed you try again. Daylight was waning and a doe came by. Nathan tried a shot but the arrow missed its mark. He nocked another arrow in anticipation of another deer coming along and here it came — a buck this time. His heart raced as he drew his bow — he released the arrow and made a perfect shot.

A trophy is a prize awarded for achievement. A trophy is evidence of hunting prowess. A trophy is your first deer with a bow!

And it was a nine-point buck!

Congratulations, Nathan — and to other young hunters who experience their first harvest of wild game this year.

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