The trick to keeping these new hunters, anglers, and campers in the fold

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A group of trout anglers pause as a mentor points out an eagle nest to a new angler. (Photo by Jerry Davis)

We got, last year, what a number of hunters and trout anglers seemed to want: more individuals in the fields, woods, campsites, lakes, and duck blinds.

But will these newbies remain, purchase a license if necessary, and continue hunting and likely help us in pushing agencies to offer more opportunities, re-examine rules and regulations, and help protect public use area for outdoors pleasures?

One might imagine, should the pandemic subside, some temporary users will go back to their old ways and find other activities to fill their weekends, day vacations and holidays.

If present hunters are thrilled to have more folks on their side, it could be paramount to welcome them into the brotherhood over and again.

This doesn’t have to mean giving up a treestand, ice shanty or having them over for a wild foods feast. It could be as simple as answering a question, even saying hello in a parking lot or boat landing.  Informally advising someone on what bird feed, binoculars or shot size to consider if the occasion presents itself.

Many new-to-the-outdoors types are likely to be open for suggestions, more so than a longtime turkey hunter who already knows it all, or at least believes he or she does.

Some of these bikers, fly anglers, wild food eaters, and forest botanists may already be as interested in preserving some part of nature that a long-time hunter is.

They may also be excited about taking a deer we have no immediate use for because the freezer is full.

Categories: Wisconsin – Jerry Davis

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