For those in states that have early hunting seasons you may already have a whitetail deer at the game processors, or in your freezer.
But for most of us deer season may still be a couple of months away. The first day of my hunting season starts tomorrow! I love dove season.
Most of ya’ll are familiar with a lot of the available game species, but there are other not-so-popular game animals that preppers should be familiar with.
I’m only familiar with the game animals in Texas and you’ll need to get specific information from the state you live in. Learn what game is available and what the seasons, rules and limits are for harvesting that game.
Here are some common game animals many hunters in Texas enjoy:
- Whitetail Deer and Mule Deer (limited seasons)
- Feral Hogs (No restricted season)
- Dove (specific seasons and species)
- Quail (limited seasons)
- Duck (specific seasons and species)
- Turkey (specific areas, seasons and species)
- Pheasant (specific areas and seasons)
Those are just some of the common game animals from the top of my head, but there are other game animals many hunters ignore:
- Squirrel (tasty and has a season in Texas)
- Javelina (resembles the feral hog but is unrelated
- Aligator (never seen one but we have a season for it in N.Tx)
- Goose (limited season)
- Rabbits and Hares (no closed season)
- Sandhill Crane (limited season)
- Woodcocks, Snipe, Sora, Moorhens, and Rails are other game birds commonly overlooked by Texas hunters.
In a post SHTF scenario you may need to rely on your hunting skills to help feed your family. Plus, I believe it’s an integral part to becoming self-sufficient. But should you rely on hunting solely as a way to provide meat and protein? Probably not.
Just like our ancestors a mix of hunting and raising livestock is the best plan, but I’m getting off topic here!
Getting back to hunting, it seems a major objection that I hear from preppers and survivalist to not go hunting is the expense and lack of experience.
Hunting licenses can be costly depending on the state and area you plan to hunt. In Texas the fees for a license are reasonable and not a big dent on the pocket-book.
The real problem lies with finding somewhere to hunt that is affordable. According to Farmland.org Texas is 84% private property. This means that to find a good spot to hunt you usually have to either own land, lease hunting land or make really good friends with a landowner.
If you can’t find a place to hunt on private land there is still ample opportunity to hunt public lands. Some states have more public land to hunt than others and your parks and wildlife department should have their programs outlined on their websites.
In Texas you can sign up for hunts on TPWD (Texas Parks and Wildlife Department) managed lands that include exotic hunts for species such as Audad (sheep) and Axis Deer.
Planning and executing a hunting trip can be a big commitment but I recommend starting small. Find a public hunting land near you and start with smaller game. Another way to get into hunting is to book a guided hunt. Many ranches offer very affordable wild hog hunts since you’re helping control the population. These hunts are usually offered year round since there is no season on feral hog in most states that allow hunting them.
Another great way to practice your hunting skills is by just getting out in nature and learning the woods. During off season I’ll commonly go “hunting” with my digital camera. It can be more difficult to get a good picture of a wild animal then to shoot one!
Here’s a picture I took in the Ozark Mountains a couple of days ago of a shy ground hog:
Whether you decide to start hunting today or not, it’s important to develop the skill and know-how incase you need it someday. Plus you get to enjoy the great outdoors!
What are your hunting plans for this hunting season? Jump to the comments below and share your hunting passion!