Friday, October 12, 2012

Dear Mr. Hunter: Don't Shoot My Horse!

photo by David Chancellor

Blaze orange is very "in" right now, and not just for hunters-- you should be wearing it too, every time you're out on a trail ride. Deer hunting season has already started (see dates here).

Yep, sorry, we're not talking about the sleek English discipline today, but the blood-and-guts kind of hunting. I bring it up because a hunter just got my dander up by parking a tree stand right on the edge of my property. Now, I think he is technically on his property, in his tree, but he's overlooking my fields. As in, planning to shoot critters on my fields.

I should take a moment here and state that I am not anti-hunting. No, I fully respect a skilled outdoorsman's right to appreciate nature in his own way. Tracking, survival, putting food on the table, the knowledge that you killed cleanly with a good shot... Yep, hunting is fine. But being a fuckwad with a gun is not. What I hate is some asshole sitting up in a tree, chugging a sixpack, scattering used-up casings everywhere, taking pot shots at everything that moves. I hate guys whose sole goal is a big rack, who don't eat what they shoot and don't donate it either.  I hate guys who shoot and hit badly-- and never bother to track down the poor wounded critter that's going to suffer from their lack of marksmanship. I hate bait feeders and poachers and night-shiners. I especially hate trespassers.

"Vests" like the one above shouldn't have to exist, and you shouldn't have to wear blaze orange everywhere this fall. But they do, and you should, because of hunters that are either trespassing or incredibly careless... or trespassing and incredibly careless. Every year, dozens of horses in America are shot by hunters who weren't where they were supposed to be, thought a horse was a deer, or let a bullet fly without being able to see where it might travel. To share the pictures below, right click on them and save them to your computer. Then upload them to Facebook or whatever you want.
Back to my own little dilemma. My trespassing neighbor has pulled this kind of crap before-- just not quite this stupidly. I know he's a gun hunter, and his tree stand is located at the bottom of a rather steep rise. Here's why these two things are relevant:

So, what to do? I could be a civil, reasonable adult, and go and talk to him. Or I could cover every inch of his tree stand with concentrated scented laundry detergent. I just happen to know that it's sticky, extremely hard to wash it all out, and that no deer in its right mind will go within fifty miles of anything that smells potently like Tropical Paradise. Choices, choices....

While I plot my revenge mature response, check out these stories:

Dr. Wolcott and his horse, Gunpowder, were famous Wisconsin hunters. Gunpowder would allow the doctor to balance a rifle on his head, not moving an inch when it blasted off close to his ear. Of course, it might have helped that the horse was so ancient, he was probably deaf. Their statue stands in Lake Park park in Milwaukee.

Remember how I hate bait feeders? Well I especially hate bait feeders that use horses to attract wolves.

Speaking of assholes killing horses...

I recently learned that Mr. Strut was used in Field Trials by his previous owners. I hadn't even known it was an organized sport!

On a lighter note: "Why We Don't Rope Deer." One cowboy wonders why we don't raise a deer like a steer. Well, he finds out! Yep, a deer will attack you if you piss it off. Sweet video here. Oh mighty redneck, where are you without your gun?

Finally, if there's a hunter in your neighborhood doing something sketchy, you can read the WI DNR deer hunting regulations and/or call the poaching hotline for your state-- here's a list of the hotlines and emails in every state. Wisconsin's is 1-800-TIP-WDNR (1-800-847-9367). You can also text them: text TIP 411 (847411) then leave a space, then type the situation you're seeing. You can also email Remember, hunters can't be shooting from vehicles, they can only shoot during daylight hours, and they should be wearing 50% blaze orange.

If you've made it this far, past all the boring stuff, I know you're a dedicated reader. I need your help. I've discovered a Mexican rodeo operation right in my own backyard, run by a convicted horse abuser named Larry D Heiman. Regardless of what their official addresses may be, they operate out of a dilapidated place on County Hwy T, just after Oak Park Rd, in Marshall, WI. If you have any information about Larry's activities, email me at I'm hoping to get on the property within the next month or so, and would appreciate backup on that.

1 comment:

  1. don't rope a deer ..... made me laugh out loud at work. Thanks :-)