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By: Nathan Knightley
My husband told me that he was a hunter when I first met him. He loves hunting waterfowl, upland birds and other game. His dog was a Labrador retriever and he trained him a lot. As we started seeing more of each other I began to learn how to train dogs and noticed that I possess a natural skill to work with animals. He told me that he was going to go deer hunting only a few months after we have been dating. I questioned this since deer season was still two months away. He told me that he was into archery hunting and that the season began two months earlier than the gun season. I had heard of archery hunting, but I never knew a person that was practicing it. I now knom that this is a whole new world of hunting.

The year we were dating I did not see him get ready for hunting. I just noticed that I did not see him as much as I would have liked on the weekends since he was out hunting. Once we were married I discovered the preparation that goes into bow hunting. To begin with the clothing is entirely camouflage. My husband insists that the clothing be laundered without detergents and it needed to hang outdoor for many days so there would be no household smells on it. The need for this is that with archery hunting you must get very close to the animal being shot at. Also, he had to practice shooting arrows into a big target that was shaped like a deer. This was to improve his precision at different distances. Also he installed a portable bench in a tree so that he could quietly sit and hope for a deer to walk close enough so he can shoot it. He told me that there (exists|is} a method named still hunting in which the hunter is on the ground, but when there are still many leaves on the trees in the early season, the tree stand is a preferred technique of hunting.

I was very surprised at the amount of time to prepare and the energy that is necessary to pull back the strings on the bow. Through the years I have come to admire archery hunting and the people that do it. It is much more of a sport that utilising a gun to shoot a deer. The animal has to be close and the shot has to be very precise. My husband has shot many deer and two black bears with his bow. It is more work and more time consuming, but it is a sport that he enjoys.

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