Ethical Hunting

A new generation of hunters talk “ethical hunting.” Green hunting. Kill what you eat. They’re with us.

724-pound bull moose with an antler spread of 56 and 1/2 inches is inspected by a hunter at a weigh station in Kokadjo, Maine. Maine's two week moose hunting season ends on Saturday. (AP)

724-pound bull moose with an antler spread of 56 and 1/2 inches is inspected by a hunter at a weigh station in Kokadjo, Maine. Maine’s two week moose hunting season ends on Saturday. (AP)

Hunting tends to draw a bright line through American culture.  Guys in camo with their guns versus sandaled locavores down at the farmers market.  Now, some of the locavores are crossing that line.  Hunting for food.  Killing what they eat.  “Ethical hunting,” is the new tag.  Don’t just grab dinner from the factory farm.

Track it through the woods.  Look it in the face.  Pay the “full karmic price” for your meal.  Not elephants and rhinos.  Not the endangered.  But maybe deer.  Dinner.

This hour, On Point:  a new breed of American hunter, and one big conservation biologist’s view of their kill.

-Tom Ashbrook


Lily Raff McCaulou, author of the new book Call of the Mild: Learning to Hunt My Own Dinner. You can find an excerpt here. You can find her New York Times op-ed on hunting and the National Rifle Association here.

Steven Rinella, a lifelong hunter, he’s the author of the new book Meat Eater: Adventures from the Life of an American Hunter. You can read an excerpt of his book here.

Stuart Pimm, professor of conservation ecology at Duke University. He testified before Congress in June, talking about consevation and environmental stewardship.

From Tom’s Reading List

The New York Times “Who is the most famous hunter in America? If you’re over 30, the first names that come to mind are probably Sarah Palin, Ted Nugent or Dick Cheney. If you’re under 30, the answer is easier. The most famous hunter in America is Mark Zuckerberg, the billionaire founder of Facebook.”

Alaska Dispatch “As if no hunter owned an iPad before Mark Zuckerberg, the billionaire founder of Facebook who decided to take up hunting last year.  And as if ducking when people shoot does much good. Better to get a tree between yourself and the shooter. No telling who might be aiming low.”

The Daily Beast “If hunting is a sexual act, Rinella is a promiscuous man. He’s killed deer, squirrel, bear, Dall sheep, beaver, and muskrat, to name a few. In case you don’t believe he killed these animals, the book helpfully supplies photos of Rinella and his friends grinning beside various carcasses. To his credit, Rinella seems to realize that gory accounts of gutting and killing animals may be of limited interest.”

Excerpt: Call of the Mild

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