> Are there any shooters on this list? How do you feel about "varminting" in
> general (e.g. coyotes, prairie dogs)?
I'm not so much of a shooter as I am a hunter and there's a big difference
between the two. My cousin, for example, is a shooter. He goes to competitions
of shooting targets, shooting targets while being timed, etc. But he seldom
goes hunting and when he does, he doesn't understand the nature of what he
hunts nor their habitats to have much success. In my estimation, to be a
consistently successful hunter, one has to know the animal's habits as well as
habitat. I, on the other hand, only shoot a few practice times each year to ensure
I'm sighted-in as opposed to seeing if my gun is sighted in. Unless I dropped
a gun, I've never had my gun go out of being sighted in. Anyway, the
purpose of my gun is a tool to harvest red meat for myself and my family. I didn't
go elk hunting this past fall because we butchered a steer and did not need
anymore red meat for the year. I do plan to elk hunt this year.
This prior paragraph probably gives you a good idea where I'm going on the
varmint shooting question. I oppose killing anything that doesn't improve my
position in the circle of life, whether it be for self-protection or for
sustenance. It seems senseless to kill without utility. That said, I was raised on
a farm where we shot gophers as a way of regulating their populations from my
Dad's point of view, but as a sport from myself and my brothers' points of
On the other hand, I've never been one to shy away from swatting a bee to
keep from getting stung. And if I came across a rattlesnake in my yard, he'd
either take a little trip out into the desert or become chicken food. Just doing
my part to expedite adaptive behaviors in the aforementioned critters :).
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