Hunters Remorse After the hunt

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posted on Jun, 17 2013 @ 10:36 AM
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This weekend I went up to the family retreat for father’s day. We did a lot of target shooting and had a really fun time. At the retreat we have 140 cattle that graze in an open field. In that field are ground squirrels that burrow holes in the ground. The problem with this is the cows could take a miss step and break a leg in these holes the squeals dig. They also burrow under the house and can lead to poor integrity of the foundation. So they need to be eliminated.

So yesterday, we were packing up and getting ready to head home when a ground squirrels came out of a hole under the house and jumped on a rail and started to head to the backyard. I pulled out my .22 leaver action browning with iron sights and ran to the back yard to take him out. I was about 40 feet from him and shot him in the upper body. He fell into the dry creek, I lost him, found him after about 15 seconds and pulled one last shot to put him out for good, shooting him in his upper spine/neck.

I’ve target practiced my whole life. I’m a great shot but have never hunted before. At that moment I’ve felt the most dread I’ve ever felt in my life. I got tunnel vision and wanted to throw up but all my buddies were yelling and giving me high fives for my great shot. I could not sleep last night and all I could think about was the emptiness of death. I feel so bad, I can see the squirrels now, looking at me right before I took the shoot. I can’t justify the kill in my own head, even if they are ruining the foundation of the house and killing livestock indirectly because of their holes they dig and the cows break their legs in them. The only way I can rationalize it is, it’s better than dying from you guts melting from the poison they eat that’s out there right? And I know he did not go to waste because there is a family of coyotes out there that will eat him.

Anyways, this leads to a larger question. How the heck am I going to take down a deer in a survival situation when I can’t even shot a ground squirrels? Have you ever had hunters’ remorse? How do you get over it?

God forbid if you had to make the call to end another person’s life that’s trying to kill you or a loved one in a survival situation. I don’t know how I would deal this that after. I want to throw up thinking about it.
edit on 17-6-2013 by camaro68ss because: (no reason given)
edit on 17-6-2013 by camaro68ss because: (no reason given)




posted on Jun, 17 2013 @ 10:46 AM
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I wouldn't call you shooting the varmint, hunting. I understand your feelings. I have gotten that way about shooting big game. I eat the meat. That is the reason I hunt. I think you would feel differently if you depended on the food for your family's survival. I don't kill animals unnecessarily however there are times when you should protect your property.

I would have to put it into context.... have you tried putting moth balls or something else down the holes? I don't know how to discourage them from digging .. a dog perhaps?



posted on Jun, 17 2013 @ 10:46 AM
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Just as with watching death and destruction in movies and on tv....you will eventually become less sensitive to it. If you are doing it for survival it will be easier to justify as well. You have to eat so it's either you or them...

I was the same way the first time I hunted....I still feel for the animals I have killed but I do eat them.



posted on Jun, 17 2013 @ 10:47 AM
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reply to post by camaro68ss
 


Time, just like anything else.

When I first went hunting (I mean day one)...I had a 20 gauge shotgun. I saw a rabbit. I wanted to impress my dad. I didn't ask permission (a major no-no), and I shot that rabbit. Well, you can imagine what the shotgun did to the rabbit.

I was in 4th grade, like I knew any better. I learned how to safely handle a gun, etc. My big mistake was in not telling my dad I was going to shoot. (and of course, for using the wrong weapon for the wrong target).

I felt terrible. It was months before I'd go hunting again. Then, with a bow. (with my dad usually putting in the kill shot). Where I was (Alaska), it wasn't like we could always just go to the store and get some steaks. Sure, we had a commissary, but meat wasn't in great supply, so we actually hunted for a reason. (and everyone in the compound did, so it was normal).

Now, it has been YEARS since I hunted. But, I'm sure I could do so if need be. I'm a great cold shot (i.e. no aiming), despite my need for glasses.

I'd suggest fishing first...as it is hunting of a sort. Same idea. You do the kill, you actually prepare the dead animal into food, etc. It's a bit more light than hunting, but really, when you get down to it, no big difference.



posted on Jun, 17 2013 @ 10:47 AM
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reply to post by camaro68ss
 


Big difference as this is for survival and you recognize ridding of rodents from survival...I could not and would not shoot an animal for the purpose of recreation and I don't hold it against those that do....in a survival situation it would be as natural as breathing....having livestock is no different from hunting animals...other than hunting gets a bit trickier....thanks for posting that...misread your post the first time so I had to come back to this...

Don't feel bad as I would kill a rat or other animal that was invading my space just as they would kill some animal invading their space..
edit on 17-6-2013 by chrismarco because: (no reason given)



posted on Jun, 17 2013 @ 10:48 AM
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reply to post by fnpmitchreturns
 



a dog perhaps?


Or cats. Seems like a better solution too, as they can always be there, unlike you with a gun.

As an aside, I never hunted for sport...only for something where I plan to eat the animal, and preferably do something with other parts (fur, etc.)

About the only real shooting I do these days is to frighten off buzzards, and even then, I don't shoot to hit, just to scare them off.
edit on 17-6-2013 by Gazrok because: (no reason given)



posted on Jun, 17 2013 @ 10:49 AM
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What made you decide to take the shot? You explained the damage they could do, but it seems that you were out there to target practice, not get rid of the critters. Was it to impress your friends?

In a survival situation, I do believe you would be able to shoot a deer to survive. People have done far worse to survive.



posted on Jun, 17 2013 @ 10:50 AM
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You'll get used to it, it is very necessary to know that if needed you can kill something. I don't hunt much anymore but have killed my share of animals in the past. For the last twenty years or more I have only killed what I eat or maybe a problematic animal if I have to. I tell raccoons to leave and don't come back because I don't want to kill them. They listen and don't come back usually, I had a couple of ones that wouldn't listen and had to shoot them. One of the coons I shot was hauling the live trap I borrowed from the police department into the woods, he couldn't even fit his head in the live trap cage
I wasn't about to buy the police a new trap because a coon stole it.
That coon weighed over thirty five pounds.



posted on Jun, 17 2013 @ 10:50 AM
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I haven't actually ever "gotten over it".
I deal with it in my own way when actually hunting for food, by thanking the animal spirit and making a small offering.

I cry when other people shoot "pest" animals that are doing damage. I know perfectly well that it is necessary, but I still do it.



posted on Jun, 17 2013 @ 10:52 AM
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look how much damage they do now look at a wood chuck their only value is food for other animals if there isn't preditators then yopu need to become one



posted on Jun, 17 2013 @ 10:58 AM
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Originally posted by jam321
What made you decide to take the shot? You explained the damage they could do, but it seems that you were out there to target practice, not get rid of the critters. Was it to impress your friends?

In a survival situation, I do believe you would be able to shoot a deer to survive. People have done far worse to survive.


I took the shot because I was told by my father to kill them on site. I had the .22 in the back of my truck and we were not shooting that day. I just pulled it out and went after it. yes I had my friends there with me. I dont know, i guess i was not thinking and i did not know i would feel this way. It was my first kill
edit on 17-6-2013 by camaro68ss because: (no reason given)



posted on Jun, 17 2013 @ 10:59 AM
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Originally posted by Gazrok
reply to post by fnpmitchreturns
 



a dog perhaps?


Or cats. Seems like a better solution too, as they can always be there, unlike you with a gun.

As an aside, I never hunted for sport...only for something where I plan to eat the animal, and preferably do something with other parts (fur, etc.)

About the only real shooting I do these days is to frighten off buzzards, and even then, I don't shoot to hit, just to scare them off.
edit on 17-6-2013 by Gazrok because: (no reason given)


can cats even kill ground squirrels?
edit on 17-6-2013 by camaro68ss because: (no reason given)



posted on Jun, 17 2013 @ 11:04 AM
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I've been killing and eating things for years...i only see food and maybe the possibility of a nice pair of Mittens....



posted on Jun, 17 2013 @ 11:06 AM
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This is why I despise hunting as a "sport".
It's not a sport, nor was it ever intended to be.
But our own addiction to sports turned it into one.

For survival there's no remorse, if it's to save your life.
But for hunting there is thanks, I'd imagine most of us don't hunt for survival.
For the most part, we can all go to the store and get food. Not all but most.
Which is why I give thanks to the animals I hunt because they're ensuring my survival. I do not hunt for total survival but as a supplement to my food stores. Which is also why I garden.

As for pests or varmints, it depends.
If my life or livelyhood is threatened, I have no remorse.
But if it's just to get rid of a nuisance, there is still some.
Don't know why it's there, but I feel it.
Which is why I only dispatch when necessary.
A life is a life.






posted on Jun, 17 2013 @ 11:08 AM
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We have remorse when we do things without purpose, reason or intent. Regretting an action done without thinking makes you understand your own motives and understand yourself.

It does not make you weak or less of a man. In fact it is one of the things that makes different from animals. Rarely do animals kill for sport or fun most out of necessity. There is no sport in killing a hunter does so out of need and sportsman can hone skills without taking a life.

Being able to kill with a weapon does not make a man, being brave enough to share how you felt about it does!

edit on 17-6-2013 by abeverage because: (no reason given)



posted on Jun, 17 2013 @ 11:10 AM
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Originally posted by camaro68ss


Anyways, this leads to a larger question. How the heck am I going to take down a deer in a survival situation when I can’t even shot a ground squeal? Have you ever had hunters’ remorse? How do you get over it?


Perhaps something within is telling you not to be a game hunter..



posted on Jun, 17 2013 @ 11:11 AM
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It is hard to deal with. Each "hunter" deals with it in their own way. My father taught me when I was very young to take only mature animals (I really only hunt whitetail deer) and only take the shot if it is clearly a kill shot. I think that is how I justify it in my mind, an older deer with a quick death. We do eat the meat, of course, but I need that extra nudge to get me over it.

JT



posted on Jun, 17 2013 @ 11:12 AM
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I would be more worried about you if you felt nothing.

I am a big proponent of hunting; I love venison, and like about any kind of critter we have around here: rabbit, squirrel, turtle, snake, even possum and raccoon. But I don't think I have ever killed an animal without some part of me wishing it hadn't had to be. That doesn't stop me from killing it, if it must be killed, but even putting down a rogue dog that is attacking makes me somewhat sorrowful for the animal.

Your feelings are natural. You only need time to learn to handle them, as has been said. Never lose them, only learn to handle them. They do you proud.

Strangely enough, I have had to pull a gun once and only once on another human. I was ready to pull the trigger: safety off, hammer back, finger firmly on the trigger, and the barrel beside his temple. He ran... I didn't have to shoot. But thinking back, I felt less upset over that at the time than I do over shooting a deer for food. Maybe it was because I was defending myself... maybe because I have more respect for animals than I do for people... never really figured that one out...

Still happy I didn't have to shoot.

TheRedneck



posted on Jun, 17 2013 @ 11:15 AM
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Originally posted by Ophiuchus 13

Originally posted by camaro68ss



Perhaps something within is telling you not to be a game hunter..


I think your right. I'll be sticking to the paper targets.
edit on 17-6-2013 by camaro68ss because: (no reason given)



posted on Jun, 17 2013 @ 11:27 AM
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reply to post by camaro68ss
 


I'm curious, what is a "squeal" that you speak of?
I have hunted quite a few things and when first read, I ignored it as maybe a typo.
But on more than one occasion you have typed "squeal" is this a software glitch?





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