Hunting
Overview
Hunting is the practice of pursuing any living thing, usually wildlife
Wildlife
Wildlife includes all non-domesticated plants, animals and other organisms. Domesticating wild plant and animal species for human benefit has occurred many times all over the planet, and has a major impact on the environment, both positive and negative....

, for food, recreation
Recreation
Recreation is an activity of leisure, leisure being discretionary time. The "need to do something for recreation" is an essential element of human biology and psychology. Recreational activities are often done for enjoyment, amusement, or pleasure and are considered to be "fun"...

, or trade. In present-day use, the term refers to lawful hunting, as distinguished from poaching
Poaching
Poaching is the illegal taking of wild plants or animals contrary to local and international conservation and wildlife management laws. Violations of hunting laws and regulations are normally punishable by law and, collectively, such violations are known as poaching.It may be illegal and in...

, which is the killing, trapping or capture of the hunted species contrary to applicable law. The species which are hunted are referred to as game
Game (food)
Game is any animal hunted for food or not normally domesticated. Game animals are also hunted for sport.The type and range of animals hunted for food varies in different parts of the world. This will be influenced by climate, animal diversity, local taste and locally accepted view about what can or...

, and are usually mammal
Mammal
Mammals are members of a class of air-breathing vertebrate animals characterised by the possession of endothermy, hair, three middle ear bones, and mammary glands functional in mothers with young...

s and migratory
Bird migration
Bird migration is the regular seasonal journey undertaken by many species of birds. Bird movements include those made in response to changes in food availability, habitat or weather. Sometimes, journeys are not termed "true migration" because they are irregular or in only one direction...

 or non-migratory gamebirds.

Hunting can also involve the elimination of vermin
Vermin
Vermin is a term applied to various animal species regarded by some as pests or nuisances and especially to those associated with the carrying of disease. Since the term is defined in relation to human activities, which species are included will vary from area to area and even person to person...

, as a means of pest control
Pest control
Pest control refers to the regulation or management of a species defined as a pest, usually because it is perceived to be detrimental to a person's health, the ecology or the economy.-History:...

 to prevent diseases caused by overpopulation
Overpopulation
Overpopulation is a condition where an organism's numbers exceed the carrying capacity of its habitat. The term often refers to the relationship between the human population and its environment, the Earth...

.
Discussions
Encyclopedia
Hunting is the practice of pursuing any living thing, usually wildlife
Wildlife
Wildlife includes all non-domesticated plants, animals and other organisms. Domesticating wild plant and animal species for human benefit has occurred many times all over the planet, and has a major impact on the environment, both positive and negative....

, for food, recreation
Recreation
Recreation is an activity of leisure, leisure being discretionary time. The "need to do something for recreation" is an essential element of human biology and psychology. Recreational activities are often done for enjoyment, amusement, or pleasure and are considered to be "fun"...

, or trade. In present-day use, the term refers to lawful hunting, as distinguished from poaching
Poaching
Poaching is the illegal taking of wild plants or animals contrary to local and international conservation and wildlife management laws. Violations of hunting laws and regulations are normally punishable by law and, collectively, such violations are known as poaching.It may be illegal and in...

, which is the killing, trapping or capture of the hunted species contrary to applicable law. The species which are hunted are referred to as game
Game (food)
Game is any animal hunted for food or not normally domesticated. Game animals are also hunted for sport.The type and range of animals hunted for food varies in different parts of the world. This will be influenced by climate, animal diversity, local taste and locally accepted view about what can or...

, and are usually mammal
Mammal
Mammals are members of a class of air-breathing vertebrate animals characterised by the possession of endothermy, hair, three middle ear bones, and mammary glands functional in mothers with young...

s and migratory
Bird migration
Bird migration is the regular seasonal journey undertaken by many species of birds. Bird movements include those made in response to changes in food availability, habitat or weather. Sometimes, journeys are not termed "true migration" because they are irregular or in only one direction...

 or non-migratory gamebirds.

Hunting can also involve the elimination of vermin
Vermin
Vermin is a term applied to various animal species regarded by some as pests or nuisances and especially to those associated with the carrying of disease. Since the term is defined in relation to human activities, which species are included will vary from area to area and even person to person...

, as a means of pest control
Pest control
Pest control refers to the regulation or management of a species defined as a pest, usually because it is perceived to be detrimental to a person's health, the ecology or the economy.-History:...

 to prevent diseases caused by overpopulation
Overpopulation
Overpopulation is a condition where an organism's numbers exceed the carrying capacity of its habitat. The term often refers to the relationship between the human population and its environment, the Earth...

. Hunting advocates state that hunting can be a necessary component of modern wildlife management
Wildlife management
Wildlife management attempts to balance the needs of wildlife with the needs of people using the best available science. Wildlife management can include game keeping, wildlife conservation and pest control...

, for example to help maintain a population of healthy animals within an environment's ecological carrying capacity
Carrying capacity
The carrying capacity of a biological species in an environment is the maximum population size of the species that the environment can sustain indefinitely, given the food, habitat, water and other necessities available in the environment...

 when natural checks such as predators are absent. In the United States, wildlife managers are frequently part of hunting regulatory and licensing bodies, where they help to set rules on the number, manner and conditions in which game may be hunted.

The pursuit, capture and release, or capture for food of fish is called fishing, which is not commonly categorised as a form of hunting. Trapping
Trapping (Animal)
Animal trapping, or simply trapping, is the use of a device to remotely catch an animal. Animals may be trapped for a variety of purposes, including food, wildlife management, hunting, and pest control...

 is also usually considered a separate activity. It is also not considered hunting to pursue animals without intent to kill them, as in wildlife
Wildlife
Wildlife includes all non-domesticated plants, animals and other organisms. Domesticating wild plant and animal species for human benefit has occurred many times all over the planet, and has a major impact on the environment, both positive and negative....

 photography or birdwatching
Birdwatching
Birdwatching or birding is the observation of birds as a recreational activity. It can be done with the naked eye, through a visual enhancement device like binoculars and telescopes, or by listening for bird sounds. Birding often involves a significant auditory component, as many bird species are...

. The practice of hunting for plants or mushrooms is a colloquial term for foraging
Foraging
- Definitions and significance of foraging behavior :Foraging is the act of searching for and exploiting food resources. It affects an animal's fitness because it plays an important role in an animal's ability to survive and reproduce...

 or gathering
Hunter-gatherer
A hunter-gatherer or forage society is one in which most or all food is obtained from wild plants and animals, in contrast to agricultural societies which rely mainly on domesticated species. Hunting and gathering was the ancestral subsistence mode of Homo, and all modern humans were...

.

Skilful tracking and acquisition of an elusive target has caused the word hunting to be used in the vernacular as a metaphor, as in "bargain hunting" or "hunting down corruption and waste".

Paleolithic

Hunting has a long history and may well pre-date the rise of the species Homo sapiens
Human evolution
Human evolution refers to the evolutionary history of the genus Homo, including the emergence of Homo sapiens as a distinct species and as a unique category of hominids and mammals...

. While our earliest Hominid
Hominidae
The Hominidae or include them .), as the term is used here, form a taxonomic family, including four extant genera: chimpanzees , gorillas , humans , and orangutans ....

 ancestors were probably frugivore
Frugivore
A frugivore is a fruit eater. It can be any type of herbivore or omnivore where fruit is a preferred food type. Because approximately 20% of all mammalian herbivores also eat fruit, frugivory is considered to be common among mammals. Since frugivores eat a lot of fruit they are highly dependent...

s or omnivore
Omnivore
Omnivores are species that eat both plants and animals as their primary food source...

s, there is evidence that earlier Homo species, and possibly also Australopithecine
Australopithecine
The term australopithecine refers generally to any species in the related genera Australopithecus or Paranthropus. These species occurred in the Plio-Pleistocene era, and were bipedal and dentally similar to humans, but with a brain size not much larger than modern apes, lacking the...

species utilised larger animals for subsistence.

Furthermore there is evidence that hunting may have been one of the multiple environmental factor
Environmental factor
Environmental factor or ecological factor or ecofactor is any factor, abiotic or biotic, that influences living organisms.- Environmental factors inducing diseases :...

s leading to extinction
Extinction
In biology and ecology, extinction is the end of an organism or of a group of organisms , normally a species. The moment of extinction is generally considered to be the death of the last individual of the species, although the capacity to breed and recover may have been lost before this point...

s of the holocene
Holocene
The Holocene is a geological epoch which began at the end of the Pleistocene and continues to the present. The Holocene is part of the Quaternary period. Its name comes from the Greek words and , meaning "entirely recent"...

 megafauna
Megafauna
In terrestrial zoology, megafauna are "giant", "very large" or "large" animals. The most common thresholds used are or...

, and their replacement by smaller herbivores. It has been found that the North American
North American
North American generally refers to an entity, people, group, or attribute of North America, especially of the United States and Canada together.-Culture:*North American English, a collective term used to describe American English and Canadian English...

 megafauna extinction was coincidental with the Younger Dryas impact event
Younger Dryas impact event
The Younger Dryas impact hypothesis or Clovis comet hypothesis was the hypothesized large air burst or earth impact of an object or objects from outer space that initiated the Younger Dryas cold period about 12,900 BP calibrated ....

, possibly making hunting a less critical factor in prehistoric species loss than had been previously thought. However, in other locations such as Australia, humans are thought to have played a very significant role in the extinction of the Australian megafauna
Australian megafauna
Australian megafauna are a number of large animal species in Australia, often defined as species with body mass estimates of greater than 30 kilograms, or equal to or greater than 30% greater body mass than their closest living relatives...

 that was widespread prior to human occupation.

Of the closest surviving relatives of the human species, Pan
Chimpanzee
Chimpanzee, sometimes colloquially chimp, is the common name for the two extant species of ape in the genus Pan. The Congo River forms the boundary between the native habitat of the two species:...

, the Common Chimpanzee
Common Chimpanzee
The common chimpanzee , also known as the robust chimpanzee, is a great ape. Colloquially, the common chimpanzee is often called the chimpanzee , though technically this term refers to both species in the genus Pan: the common chimpanzee and the closely related bonobo, formerly called the pygmy...

 has an omnivorous
Omnivore
Omnivores are species that eat both plants and animals as their primary food source...

 diet
Diet (nutrition)
In nutrition, diet is the sum of food consumed by a person or other organism. Dietary habits are the habitual decisions an individual or culture makes when choosing what foods to eat. With the word diet, it is often implied the use of specific intake of nutrition for health or weight-management...

, which includes troop hunting
Predation
In ecology, predation describes a biological interaction where a predator feeds on its prey . Predators may or may not kill their prey prior to feeding on them, but the act of predation always results in the death of its prey and the eventual absorption of the prey's tissue through consumption...

 behaviour based on beta males being led by an alpha male, however the less violent Bonobo
Bonobo
The bonobo , Pan paniscus, previously called the pygmy chimpanzee and less often, the dwarf or gracile chimpanzee, is a great ape and one of the two species making up the genus Pan. The other species in genus Pan is Pan troglodytes, or the common chimpanzee...

s, have a mostly frugivorous diet.

While it is undisputed that early humans were hunters, the importance of this for in the emergence of the Homo genus from the earlier Australopithecines, including the production of stone tool
Stone tool
A stone tool is, in the most general sense, any tool made either partially or entirely out of stone. Although stone tool-dependent societies and cultures still exist today, most stone tools are associated with prehistoric, particularly Stone Age cultures that have become extinct...

s and eventually the control of fire, are emphasised in the hunting hypothesis
Hunting hypothesis
In paleoanthropology, the hunting hypothesis is the hypothesis that human evolution was primarily influenced by the activity of hunting for relatively large and fast animals, and that the activity of hunting distinguished human ancestors from other primates....

, and de-emphasised in scenarios that stress omnivory and social interaction, including mating behaviour
Mating
In biology, mating is the pairing of opposite-sex or hermaphroditic organisms for copulation. In social animals, it also includes the raising of their offspring. Copulation is the union of the sex organs of two sexually reproducing animals for insemination and subsequent internal fertilization...

, as essential in the emergence of human behavioural modernity. With the establishment of language
Language
Language may refer either to the specifically human capacity for acquiring and using complex systems of communication, or to a specific instance of such a system of complex communication...

, culture, and religion, hunting became a theme
Theme (literature)
A theme is a broad, message, or moral of a story. The message may be about life, society, or human nature. Themes often explore timeless and universal ideas and are almost always implied rather than stated explicitly. Along with plot, character,...

 of stories
Storytelling
Storytelling is the conveying of events in words, images and sounds, often by improvisation or embellishment. Stories or narratives have been shared in every culture as a means of entertainment, education, cultural preservation and in order to instill moral values...

 and myths
Mythology
The term mythology can refer either to the study of myths, or to a body or collection of myths. As examples, comparative mythology is the study of connections between myths from different cultures, whereas Greek mythology is the body of myths from ancient Greece...

, as well as ritual
Ritual
A ritual is a set of actions, performed mainly for their symbolic value. It may be prescribed by a religion or by the traditions of a community. The term usually excludes actions which are arbitrarily chosen by the performers....

s such as dance and animal sacrifice
Animal sacrifice
Animal sacrifice is the ritual killing of an animal as part of a religion. It is practised by many religions as a means of appeasing a god or gods or changing the course of nature...

.

Hunting was a crucial component of hunter-gatherer
Hunter-gatherer
A hunter-gatherer or forage society is one in which most or all food is obtained from wild plants and animals, in contrast to agricultural societies which rely mainly on domesticated species. Hunting and gathering was the ancestral subsistence mode of Homo, and all modern humans were...

 societies before the domestication
Domestication
Domestication or taming is the process whereby a population of animals or plants, through a process of selection, becomes accustomed to human provision and control. In the Convention on Biological Diversity a domesticated species is defined as a 'species in which the evolutionary process has been...

 of livestock and the dawn of agriculture
Neolithic Revolution
The Neolithic Revolution was the first agricultural revolution. It was the transition from hunting and gathering to agriculture and settlement. Archaeological data indicates that various forms of plants and animal domestication evolved independently in 6 separate locations worldwide circa...

, beginning about 11,000 years ago. By the Mesolithic
Mesolithic
The Mesolithic is an archaeological concept used to refer to certain groups of archaeological cultures defined as falling between the Paleolithic and the Neolithic....

, hunting strategies
Hunting strategy
A hunting strategy, or hunting method, is for locating, targeting, and killing a targeted animal. Hunting methods have also been applied to situations such as the pursuit of fugitives by government agencies and the targeting of a small military unit by a larger one, especially during low intensity...

 had diversified with the development of the bow
Bow (weapon)
The bow and arrow is a projectile weapon system that predates recorded history and is common to most cultures.-Description:A bow is a flexible arc that shoots aerodynamic projectiles by means of elastic energy. Essentially, the bow is a form of spring powered by a string or cord...

 by 18,000 years ago and the domestication of the dog about 15,000 years ago. There is fossil evidence for spear
Spear
A spear is a pole weapon consisting of a shaft, usually of wood, with a pointed head.The head may be simply the sharpened end of the shaft itself, as is the case with bamboo spears, or it may be made of a more durable material fastened to the shaft, such as flint, obsidian, iron, steel or...

 use in Asian hunting dating from approximately 16,200 years ago.

Many species of animals have been hunted throughout history. It has been suggested that in North America and Eurasia
Eurasia
Eurasia is a continent or supercontinent comprising the traditional continents of Europe and Asia ; covering about 52,990,000 km2 or about 10.6% of the Earth's surface located primarily in the eastern and northern hemispheres...

 Caribou and wild reindeer
Reindeer
The reindeer , also known as the caribou in North America, is a deer from the Arctic and Subarctic, including both resident and migratory populations. While overall widespread and numerous, some of its subspecies are rare and one has already gone extinct.Reindeer vary considerably in color and size...

 "may well be the species of single greatest importance in the entire anthropological literature on hunting" (see also Reindeer Age), although the varying importance of different species would depend on the geographic location.

Hunter-gathering lifestyles remained prevalent in some parts of the New World
New World
The New World is one of the names used for the Western Hemisphere, specifically America and sometimes Oceania . The term originated in the late 15th century, when America had been recently discovered by European explorers, expanding the geographical horizon of the people of the European middle...

, Sub-Saharan Africa
Sub-Saharan Africa
Sub-Saharan Africa as a geographical term refers to the area of the African continent which lies south of the Sahara. A political definition of Sub-Saharan Africa, instead, covers all African countries which are fully or partially located south of the Sahara...

, and Siberia
Siberia
Siberia is an extensive region constituting almost all of Northern Asia. Comprising the central and eastern portion of the Russian Federation, it was part of the Soviet Union from its beginning, as its predecessor states, the Tsardom of Russia and the Russian Empire, conquered it during the 16th...

, as well as all of Australia, until the European Age of Discovery
Age of Discovery
The Age of Discovery, also known as the Age of Exploration and the Great Navigations , was a period in history starting in the early 15th century and continuing into the early 17th century during which Europeans engaged in intensive exploration of the world, establishing direct contacts with...

. They still persist in some tribal societies, albeit in rapid decline. Peoples that preserved paleolithic hunting-gathering until the recent past include some indigenous peoples of the Amazonas (Aché
Aché
The Aché Indians are a traditional hunter-gatherer tribe living in Paraguay. They are called "Guayakí" by Guaraní-speaking neighbors and in early anthropological accounts...

), some Central and Southern African Bushmen
Bushmen
The indigenous people of Southern Africa, whose territory spans most areas of South Africa, Zimbabwe, Lesotho, Mozambique, Swaziland, Botswana, Namibia, and Angola, are variously referred to as Bushmen, San, Sho, Barwa, Kung, or Khwe...

 (Hadza people, Khoisan
Khoisan
Khoisan is a unifying name for two ethnic groups of Southern Africa, who share physical and putative linguistic characteristics distinct from the Bantu majority of the region. Culturally, the Khoisan are divided into the foraging San and the pastoral Khoi...

), some peoples of New Guinea
New Guinea
New Guinea is the world's second largest island, after Greenland, covering a land area of 786,000 km2. Located in the southwest Pacific Ocean, it lies geographically to the east of the Malay Archipelago, with which it is sometimes included as part of a greater Indo-Australian Archipelago...

 (Fayu
Fayu
The Fayu are an ethnic group that live in an area of swampland in New Guinea. When first contacted by westerners they numbered about 400; a number reduced from about 2000 due to violence within the group. The Fayu generally live in single family groups with gatherings of several such groups once or...

), the Mlabri of Thailand
Thailand
Thailand , officially the Kingdom of Thailand , formerly known as Siam , is a country located at the centre of the Indochina peninsula and Southeast Asia. It is bordered to the north by Burma and Laos, to the east by Laos and Cambodia, to the south by the Gulf of Thailand and Malaysia, and to the...

 and Laos
Laos
Laos Lao: ສາທາລະນະລັດ ປະຊາທິປະໄຕ ປະຊາຊົນລາວ Sathalanalat Paxathipatai Paxaxon Lao, officially the Lao People's Democratic Republic, is a landlocked country in Southeast Asia, bordered by Burma and China to the northwest, Vietnam to the east, Cambodia to the south and Thailand to the west...

, the Vedda people of Sri Lanka
Sri Lanka
Sri Lanka, officially the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka is a country off the southern coast of the Indian subcontinent. Known until 1972 as Ceylon , Sri Lanka is an island surrounded by the Indian Ocean, the Gulf of Mannar and the Palk Strait, and lies in the vicinity of India and the...

, and a handful of uncontacted peoples
Uncontacted peoples
Uncontacted people, also referred to as isolated people or lost tribes, are communities who live, or have lived, either by choice or by circumstance, without significant contact with globalized civilisation....

.

Criticism

Archaeologist Louis Binford criticised the idea that early hominids and early humans were hunters. On the basis of the analysis of the skeletal remains of the consumed animals he concluded that hominids and early humans were mostly scavengers, not hunters, and this idea is popular among some archaeologists and paleoanthropologists. Robert Blumenschine proposed the idea of confrontational scavenging, which involves challenging and scaring off other predators after they have made a kill, which he suggests could have been the leading method of obtaining protein
Protein
Proteins are biochemical compounds consisting of one or more polypeptides typically folded into a globular or fibrous form, facilitating a biological function. A polypeptide is a single linear polymer chain of amino acids bonded together by peptide bonds between the carboxyl and amino groups of...

 rich meat by early humans.

Antiquity

Even as animal domestication became relatively widespread and after the development of agriculture, hunting was usually a significant contributor to the human food supply. The supplementary meat and materials from hunting included protein
Protein
Proteins are biochemical compounds consisting of one or more polypeptides typically folded into a globular or fibrous form, facilitating a biological function. A polypeptide is a single linear polymer chain of amino acids bonded together by peptide bonds between the carboxyl and amino groups of...

, bone
Bone
Bones are rigid organs that constitute part of the endoskeleton of vertebrates. They support, and protect the various organs of the body, produce red and white blood cells and store minerals. Bone tissue is a type of dense connective tissue...

 for implements, sinew for cordage, fur
Fur
Fur is a synonym for hair, used more in reference to non-human animals, usually mammals; particularly those with extensives body hair coverage. The term is sometimes used to refer to the body hair of an animal as a complete coat, also known as the "pelage". Fur is also used to refer to animal...

, feathers, rawhide and leather used in clothing. Man's earliest hunting weapons would have included rocks, spear
Spear
A spear is a pole weapon consisting of a shaft, usually of wood, with a pointed head.The head may be simply the sharpened end of the shaft itself, as is the case with bamboo spears, or it may be made of a more durable material fastened to the shaft, such as flint, obsidian, iron, steel or...

s, the atlatl
Atlatl
An atlatl or spear-thrower is a tool that uses leverage to achieve greater velocity in dart-throwing.It consists of a shaft with a cup or a spur at the end that supports and propels the butt of the dart. The atlatl is held in one hand, gripped near the end farthest from the cup...

, and bow
Bow (weapon)
The bow and arrow is a projectile weapon system that predates recorded history and is common to most cultures.-Description:A bow is a flexible arc that shoots aerodynamic projectiles by means of elastic energy. Essentially, the bow is a form of spring powered by a string or cord...

 and arrow
Arrow
An arrow is a shafted projectile that is shot with a bow. It predates recorded history and is common to most cultures.An arrow usually consists of a shaft with an arrowhead attached to the front end, with fletchings and a nock at the other.- History:...

s. Hunting is still vital in marginal climates, especially those unsuited for pastoral
Pastoral
The adjective pastoral refers to the lifestyle of pastoralists, such as shepherds herding livestock around open areas of land according to seasons and the changing availability of water and pasturage. It also refers to a genre in literature, art or music that depicts such shepherd life in an...

 uses or agriculture. For example, Inuit
Inuit
The Inuit are a group of culturally similar indigenous peoples inhabiting the Arctic regions of Canada , Denmark , Russia and the United States . Inuit means “the people” in the Inuktitut language...

 people in the Arctic
Arctic
The Arctic is a region located at the northern-most part of the Earth. The Arctic consists of the Arctic Ocean and parts of Canada, Russia, Greenland, the United States, Norway, Sweden, Finland, and Iceland. The Arctic region consists of a vast, ice-covered ocean, surrounded by treeless permafrost...

 trap and hunt animals for clothing, and use the skins of sea mammals
Marine mammal
Marine mammals, which include seals, whales, dolphins, and walruses, form a diverse group of 128 species that rely on the ocean for their existence. They do not represent a distinct biological grouping, but rather are unified by their reliance on the marine environment for feeding. The level of...

 to make kayak
Kayak
A kayak is a small, relatively narrow, human-powered boat primarily designed to be manually propelled by means of a double blade paddle.The traditional kayak has a covered deck and one or more cockpits, each seating one paddler...

s, clothing, and footwear.

On ancient reliefs, especially from Mesopotamia
Mesopotamia
Mesopotamia is a toponym for the area of the Tigris–Euphrates river system, largely corresponding to modern-day Iraq, northeastern Syria, southeastern Turkey and southwestern Iran.Widely considered to be the cradle of civilization, Bronze Age Mesopotamia included Sumer and the...

, kings are often depicted as hunters of big game such as lions, and are often portrayed hunting from a war chariot. The cultural and psychological importance of hunting in ancient societies is represented by deities such as the horned god
Horned God
The Horned God is one of the two primary deities found in some European pagan religions. He is often given various names and epithets, and represents the male part of the religion's duotheistic theological system, the other part being the female Triple Goddess. In common Wiccan belief, he is...

 Cernunnos
Cernunnos
Cernunnos is the conventional name given in Celtic studies to depictions of the horned god of Celtic polytheism. The name itself is only attested once, on the 1st-century Pillar of the Boatmen, but depictions of a horned or antlered figure, often seated in a "lotus position" and often associated...

, and lunar goddess
Lunar deity
In mythology, a lunar deity is a god or goddess associated with or symbolizing the moon. These deities can have a variety of functions and traditions depending upon the culture, but they are often related to or an enemy of the solar deity. Even though they may be related, they are distinct from the...

es of classical antiquity
Classical antiquity
Classical antiquity is a broad term for a long period of cultural history centered on the Mediterranean Sea, comprising the interlocking civilizations of ancient Greece and ancient Rome, collectively known as the Greco-Roman world...

, the Greek Artemis
Artemis
Artemis was one of the most widely venerated of the Ancient Greek deities. Her Roman equivalent is Diana. Some scholars believe that the name and indeed the goddess herself was originally pre-Greek. Homer refers to her as Artemis Agrotera, Potnia Theron: "Artemis of the wildland, Mistress of Animals"...

 or Roman Diana
Diana (mythology)
In Roman mythology, Diana was the goddess of the hunt and moon and birthing, being associated with wild animals and woodland, and having the power to talk to and control animals. She was equated with the Greek goddess Artemis, though she had an independent origin in Italy...

. Taboo
Taboo
A taboo is a strong social prohibition relating to any area of human activity or social custom that is sacred and or forbidden based on moral judgment, religious beliefs and or scientific consensus. Breaking the taboo is usually considered objectionable or abhorrent by society...

s are often related to hunting, and mythological association of prey species with a divinity
Divinity
Divinity and divine are broadly applied but loosely defined terms, used variously within different faiths and belief systems — and even by different individuals within a given faith — to refer to some transcendent or transcendental power or deity, or its attributes or manifestations in...

 could be reflected in hunting restrictions such as a reserve
Nature reserve
A nature reserve is a protected area of importance for wildlife, flora, fauna or features of geological or other special interest, which is reserved and managed for conservation and to provide special opportunities for study or research...

 surrounding a temple. Euripides
Euripides
Euripides was one of the three great tragedians of classical Athens, the other two being Aeschylus and Sophocles. Some ancient scholars attributed ninety-five plays to him but according to the Suda it was ninety-two at most...

' tale of Artemis and Actaeon
Actaeon
Actaeon , in Greek mythology, son of the priestly herdsman Aristaeus and Autonoe in Boeotia, was a famous Theban hero. Like Achilles in a later generation, he was trained by the centaur Chiron....

, for example, may be seen as a caution against disrespect of prey, or impudent boasting.

With the domestication of the dog, birds of prey
Bird of prey
Birds of prey are birds that hunt for food primarily on the wing, using their keen senses, especially vision. They are defined as birds that primarily hunt vertebrates, including other birds. Their talons and beaks tend to be relatively large, powerful and adapted for tearing and/or piercing flesh....

, and the ferret
Ferret
The ferret is a domesticated mammal of the type Mustela putorius furo. Ferrets are sexually dimorphic predators with males being substantially larger than females. They typically have brown, black, white, or mixed fur...

, various forms of animal-aided hunting developed including venery
Venery
Venery can refer to the following:*The practice or sport of hunting game animals, or the wild animals so hunted.*The practice or pursuit of sexual pleasure, or the indulgence of sexual desire.-See also:...

 (scent hound
Scent hound
Scent hounds are a type of hound that primarily hunts by scent rather than sight. The Scenthound breeds are generally regarded as having some of the most sensitive noses among canines....

 hunting, such as fox hunting
Fox hunting
Fox hunting is an activity involving the tracking, chase, and sometimes killing of a fox, traditionally a red fox, by trained foxhounds or other scent hounds, and a group of followers led by a master of foxhounds, who follow the hounds on foot or on horseback.Fox hunting originated in its current...

), coursing
Coursing
Coursing is the pursuit of game or other animals by dogs—chiefly greyhounds and other sighthounds—catching their prey by speed, running by sight and not by scent. Coursing was a common hunting technique, practised by the nobility, the landed and wealthy, and commoners with sighthounds and lurchers...

 (sight hound hunting), falconry
Falconry
Falconry is "the taking of wild quarry in its natural state and habitat by means of a trained raptor". There are two traditional terms used to describe a person involved in falconry: a falconer flies a falcon; an austringer flies a hawk or an eagle...

, and ferreting. While these are all associated with medieval hunting
Medieval hunting
Throughout Western Europe in the Middle Ages, men hunted wild animals. While game was at times an important source of food, it was rarely the principal source of nutrition. Hunting was engaged by all classes, but by the High Middle Ages, the necessity of hunting was transformed into a stylized...

, over time various dog breed
Dog breed
Dog breeds are groups of closely related and visibly similar domestic dogs, which are all of the subspecies Canis lupus familiaris, having characteristic traits that are selected and maintained by humans, bred from a known foundation stock....

s were selected for very precise tasks during the hunt, reflected in such names as pointer
Pointing breed
A pointing breed is a type of gundog typically used in finding game. Gundogs are traditionally divided into three classes: retrievers, flushing dogs, and pointing breeds. The name pointer comes from the dog's instinct to point, by stopping and aiming its muzzle towards game. This demonstrates to...

 and setter
Setter
The setter is a type of gundog used most often for hunting game such as quail, pheasant, and grouse. A setter silently searches for game by scent. When prey is encountered the dog freezes rather than chasing after the game. Setters get their name from their distinctive stance; a sort of crouch...

.

Pastoral and agricultural societies

Even as agriculture and animal husbandry
Animal husbandry
Animal husbandry is the agricultural practice of breeding and raising livestock.- History :Animal husbandry has been practiced for thousands of years, since the first domestication of animals....

 became more prevalent, hunting often remained as a part of human culture where the environment and social conditions allowed. Hunting may be used to kill animals which prey upon domestic animals, or to attempt to extirpate
Local extinction
Local extinction, also known as extirpation, is the condition of a species which ceases to exist in the chosen geographic area of study, though it still exists elsewhere...

 animals seen by humans as competition for resources such as water or forage.

As hunting moved from a subsistence activity to a social one, two trends emerged. One was that of the specialist hunter with special training and equipment. The other was the emergence of hunting as a 'sport' for those of an upper social class. The meaning of the word "game" in middle English
Middle English
Middle English is the stage in the history of the English language during the High and Late Middle Ages, or roughly during the four centuries between the late 11th and the late 15th century....

 evolved to include an animal which is hunted. As game
Game (food)
Game is any animal hunted for food or not normally domesticated. Game animals are also hunted for sport.The type and range of animals hunted for food varies in different parts of the world. This will be influenced by climate, animal diversity, local taste and locally accepted view about what can or...

 became more of a luxury than a necessity, the stylised pursuit of it also became a luxury. Dangerous hunting, such as for lions or wild boars, often done on horseback or from a chariot
Chariot
The chariot is a type of horse carriage used in both peace and war as the chief vehicle of many ancient peoples. Ox carts, proto-chariots, were built by the Proto-Indo-Europeans and also built in Mesopotamia as early as 3000 BC. The original horse chariot was a fast, light, open, two wheeled...

, had a function similar to tournaments
Tournament (medieval)
A tournament, or tourney is the name popularly given to chivalrous competitions or mock fights of the Middle Ages and Renaissance . It is one of various types of hastiludes....

 and manly sports. Hunting was considered to be an honourable, somewhat competitive pastime to help the aristocracy
Aristocracy
Aristocracy , is a form of government in which a few elite citizens rule. The term derives from the Greek aristokratia, meaning "rule of the best". In origin in Ancient Greece, it was conceived of as rule by the best qualified citizens, and contrasted with monarchy...

 practice skills of war in times of peace.

In most parts of medieval Europe, the upper class obtained the sole rights to hunt in certain areas of a feudal territory. Game in these areas was used as a source of food and furs, often provided via professional huntsmen, but it was also expected to provide a form of recreation for the aristocracy. The importance of this proprietary view of game can be seen in the Robin Hood
Robin Hood
Robin Hood was a heroic outlaw in English folklore. A highly skilled archer and swordsman, he is known for "robbing from the rich and giving to the poor", assisted by a group of fellow outlaws known as his "Merry Men". Traditionally, Robin Hood and his men are depicted wearing Lincoln green clothes....

 legends, in which one of the primary charges against the outlaws is that they "hunt the King's deer". In the European medieval period, hunting was considered part of the set of seven mechanical arts
Mechanic arts
Mechanic arts is an obsolete and archaic term. In the medieval period, the Seven Mechanical Arts were intended as a complement to the Seven Liberal Arts, and consisted of weaving, blacksmithing, war, navigation, agriculture, hunting, medicine, and the ars theatrica. In the 19th century it referred...

.

Use of dogs

Although various animals have been used to aid the hunter, none has been as important as the dog. The domestication of the dog has led to a symbiotic relationship
Symbiosis
Symbiosis is close and often long-term interaction between different biological species. In 1877 Bennett used the word symbiosis to describe the mutualistic relationship in lichens...

 in which the dog has lost its evolutionary independence from humans in exchange for support.

Dogs today are used to find, chase, and retrieve game, and sometimes to kill it. Hunting dog
Hunting dog
A hunting dog refers to any dog who assists humans in hunting. There are several types of hunting dogs developed for various tasks. The major categories of hunting dogs include hounds, terriers, dachshunds, cur type dogs, and gun dogs...

s allow humans to pursue and kill prey that would otherwise be very difficult or dangerous to hunt. Different breeds of dogs are used for different types of hunting. Waterfowl are commonly hunted using retrieving dogs such as the Labrador Retriever
Labrador Retriever
The Labrador Retriever is one of several kinds of retriever, a type of gun dog. A breed characteristic is webbed paws for swimming, useful for the breed's original purpose of retrieving fishing nets. The Labrador is the most popular breed of dog by registered ownership in Canada, the United...

, the Golden Retrievers, theChesapeake Bay Retriever
Chesapeake Bay Retriever
The Chesapeake Bay Retriever is a breed of dog belonging to the Retriever, Gundog, and Sporting breed groups. Members of the breed may also be referred to as a Chessie, CBR, or Chesapeake. The breed was developed in the United States Chesapeake Bay area during the 19th century...

, and others breeds similar.

Religion

Many prehistoric deities are either predators or prey of humans, often in a zoomorphic form, perhaps alluding to the importance of hunting for most Palaeolithic cultures.

In many pagan religions, specific rituals are conducted before or after a hunt; the rituals done may vary according to the species hunted or the season the hunt is taking place. Often a hunting ground, or the hunt for one or more species, was reserved or prohibited in the context of a temple cult.

Indian and Eastern religions

Hindu scripture
Hindu scripture
The Literature regarded as central to the Vedic and Hindu literary tradition was originally predominantly composed in Sanskrit. Indeed, much of the morphology inherent in the learning of Sanskrit is inextricably linked to study of the Vedas and other early texts....

s describe hunting as an acceptable occupation, as well as a sport of the kingly. Even figures considered godly are described to have engaged in hunting. One of the names of the god Shiva
Shiva
Shiva is a major Hindu deity, and is the destroyer god or transformer among the Trimurti, the Hindu Trinity of the primary aspects of the divine. God Shiva is a yogi who has notice of everything that happens in the world and is the main aspect of life. Yet one with great power lives a life of a...

 is Mrigavyadha, which translates as the deer hunter ("mriga" means deer, "vyadha" means hunter). In the epic Ramayana
Ramayana
The Ramayana is an ancient Sanskrit epic. It is ascribed to the Hindu sage Valmiki and forms an important part of the Hindu canon , considered to be itihāsa. The Ramayana is one of the two great epics of India and Nepal, the other being the Mahabharata...

, Dasharatha, the father of Rama
Rama
Rama or full name Ramachandra is considered to be the seventh avatar of Vishnu in Hinduism, and a king of Ayodhya in ancient Indian...

, is said to have the ability to hunt in the dark. During one of his hunting expedition he accidentally killed Shravana
Shravana
Shravana is the 22nd nakshatra or lunar mansion as used in Hindu astronomy and astrology. It belongs to the constellation Makara or Capricorn....

, mistaking him for game. During Rama's exile in the forest, Ravana
Ravana
' is the primary antagonist character of the Hindu legend, the Ramayana; who is the great king of Lanka. In the classic text, he is mainly depicted negatively, kidnapping Rama's wife Sita, to claim vengeance on Rama and his brother Lakshmana for having cut off the nose of his sister...

 kidnapped his wife Sita
SITA
SITA is a multinational information technology company specialising in providing IT and telecommunication services to the air transport industry...

 from their hut while Rama
Rama
Rama or full name Ramachandra is considered to be the seventh avatar of Vishnu in Hinduism, and a king of Ayodhya in ancient Indian...

 was hunting a golden deer, and his brother Lakshman went after him. According to the Mahabharat, Pandu
Pandu
In the Mahābhārata epic, King Pandu is the son of Ambalika and Rishi Ved Vyasa. He is more popularly known as the father of the Pandavas and ruled Hastinapur.-Birth:...

, the father of the Pandavas, accidentally killed the sage Kindama and his wife with an arrow mistaking them for a deer. Krishna
Krishna
Krishna is a central figure of Hinduism and is traditionally attributed the authorship of the Bhagavad Gita. He is the supreme Being and considered in some monotheistic traditions as an Avatar of Vishnu...

 is said to have died after being accidentally wounded by an arrow of a hunter.

Jainism
Jainism
Jainism is an Indian religion that prescribes a path of non-violence towards all living beings. Its philosophy and practice emphasize the necessity of self-effort to move the soul towards divine consciousness and liberation. Any soul that has conquered its own inner enemies and achieved the state...

 teaches followers to have tremendous respect for all of life. Prohibitions for hunting and meat eating are the fundamental conditions for being a Jain.

Buddhism's
Buddhism
Buddhism is a religion and philosophy encompassing a variety of traditions, beliefs and practices, largely based on teachings attributed to Siddhartha Gautama, commonly known as the Buddha . The Buddha lived and taught in the northeastern Indian subcontinent some time between the 6th and 4th...

 first precept
Precept
A precept is a commandment, instruction, or order intended as an authoritative rule of action.-Christianity:The term is encountered frequently in the Jewish and Christian Scriptures; e.g.:...

 is the respect for all sentient life. The general approach by all Buddhists is to avoid killing any living animals. Buddha
Gautama Buddha
Siddhārtha Gautama was a spiritual teacher from the Indian subcontinent, on whose teachings Buddhism was founded. In most Buddhist traditions, he is regarded as the Supreme Buddha Siddhārtha Gautama (Sanskrit: सिद्धार्थ गौतम; Pali: Siddhattha Gotama) was a spiritual teacher from the Indian...

 explained the issue by saying "all fear death; comparing others with oneself, one should neither kill nor cause to kill".

Christianity, Judaism, and Islam

From early Christian times, hunting has been forbidden to Roman Catholic Church clerics. Thus the Corpus Juris Canonici (C. ii, X, De cleric. venat.) says "We forbid to all servants of God hunting and expeditions through the woods with hounds; and we also forbid them to keep hawks or falcons". The Fourth Council of the Lateran
Fourth Council of the Lateran
The Fourth Council of the Lateran was convoked by Pope Innocent III with the papal bull of April 19, 1213, and the Council gathered at Rome's Lateran Palace beginning November 11, 1215. Due to the great length of time between the Council's convocation and meeting, many bishops had the opportunity...

, held under Pope Innocent III
Pope Innocent III
Pope Innocent III was Pope from 8 January 1198 until his death. His birth name was Lotario dei Conti di Segni, sometimes anglicised to Lothar of Segni....

, decreed (canon xv): "We interdict hunting or hawking to all clerics". The decree of the Council of Trent
Council of Trent
The Council of Trent was the 16th-century Ecumenical Council of the Roman Catholic Church. It is considered to be one of the Church's most important councils. It convened in Trent between December 13, 1545, and December 4, 1563 in twenty-five sessions for three periods...

 is worded more mildly: "Let clerics abstain from illicit hunting and hawking" (Sess. XXIV, De reform., c. xii), which seems to imply that not all hunting is illicit, and canonists generally make a distinction declaring noisy (clamorosa) hunting unlawful, but not quiet (quieta) hunting.

Ferraris (s.v. "Clericus", art. 6) gives it as the general sense of canonists that hunting is allowed to clerics if it be indulged in rarely and for sufficient cause, as necessity, utility or "honest" recreation, and with that moderation which is becoming to the ecclesiastical state. Ziegler, however (De episc., l. IV, c. xix), thinks that the interpretation of the canonists is not in accordance with the letter or spirit of the laws of the Church.

Nevertheless, although a distinction between lawful and unlawful hunting is undoubtedly permissible, it is certain that a bishop can absolutely prohibit all hunting to the clerics of his diocese, as was done by synod
Synod
A synod historically is a council of a church, usually convened to decide an issue of doctrine, administration or application. In modern usage, the word often refers to the governing body of a particular church, whether its members are meeting or not...

s at Milan
Milan
Milan is the second-largest city in Italy and the capital city of the region of Lombardy and of the province of Milan. The city proper has a population of about 1.3 million, while its urban area, roughly coinciding with its administrative province and the bordering Province of Monza and Brianza ,...

, Avignon
Avignon
Avignon is a French commune in southeastern France in the départment of the Vaucluse bordered by the left bank of the Rhône river. Of the 94,787 inhabitants of the city on 1 January 2010, 12 000 live in the ancient town centre surrounded by its medieval ramparts.Often referred to as the...

, Liège
Liège
Liège is a major city and municipality of Belgium located in the province of Liège, of which it is the economic capital, in Wallonia, the French-speaking region of Belgium....

, Cologne
Cologne
Cologne is Germany's fourth-largest city , and is the largest city both in the Germany Federal State of North Rhine-Westphalia and within the Rhine-Ruhr Metropolitan Area, one of the major European metropolitan areas with more than ten million inhabitants.Cologne is located on both sides of the...

, and elsewhere. Benedict XIV (De synodo diœces., l. II, c. x) declared that such synodal decrees are not too severe, as an absolute prohibition of hunting is more conformable to the ecclesiastical law
Canon law
Canon law is the body of laws & regulations made or adopted by ecclesiastical authority, for the government of the Christian organization and its members. It is the internal ecclesiastical law governing the Catholic Church , the Eastern and Oriental Orthodox churches, and the Anglican Communion of...

. In practice, therefore, the synodal statutes of various localities must be consulted to discover whether they allow quiet hunting or prohibit it altogether.

It is important to note that the Bible places no such restrictions on any Christian, as most do not observe kosher dietary laws. Hence Protestant
Protestantism
Protestantism is one of the three major groupings within Christianity. It is a movement that began in Germany in the early 16th century as a reaction against medieval Roman Catholic doctrines and practices, especially in regards to salvation, justification, and ecclesiology.The doctrines of the...

 clerics, Catholic lay parishioners, and Protestants have no religious restrictions on hunting. This is in accord with what is found in the book of Acts
Acts of the Apostles
The Acts of the Apostles , usually referred to simply as Acts, is the fifth book of the New Testament; Acts outlines the history of the Apostolic Age...

 15:28–29, and 1 Timothy 4:4.

Jewish hunting law
Game law
Game laws are statutes which regulate the right to pursue and take or kill certain kinds of fish and wild animal . Their scope can include the following: restricting the days to harvest fish or game, restricting the number of animals per person, restricting species harvested, and limiting weapons...

, based on the Torah
Torah
Torah- A scroll containing the first five books of the BibleThe Torah , is name given by Jews to the first five books of the bible—Genesis , Exodus , Leviticus , Numbers and Deuteronomy Torah- A scroll containing the first five books of the BibleThe Torah , is name given by Jews to the first five...

, is similar, permitting hunting of non-preying animals that are considered kosher for food, although hunting preying animals for food is strictly prohibited under Rabbinic law. Hence birds of prey are specifically prohibited and non-kosher. Hunting for sport, and not for food, is also forbidden in Rabbinical Law.

Islamic Sharia Law
Sharia
Sharia law, is the moral code and religious law of Islam. Sharia is derived from two primary sources of Islamic law: the precepts set forth in the Quran, and the example set by the Islamic prophet Muhammad in the Sunnah. Fiqh jurisprudence interprets and extends the application of sharia to...

 regarding hunting is the same as Jewish law, in that only non-preying animals that can be considered halal
Halal
Halal is a term designating any object or an action which is permissible to use or engage in, according to Islamic law. The term is used to designate food seen as permissible according to Islamic law...

 for food can be hunted, but only for food and not as blood-sport.

New Zealand

New Zealand has a strong hunting culture. The islands making up New Zealand originally had no land mammals apart from bat
Bat
Bats are mammals of the order Chiroptera "hand" and pteron "wing") whose forelimbs form webbed wings, making them the only mammals naturally capable of true and sustained flight. By contrast, other mammals said to fly, such as flying squirrels, gliding possums, and colugos, glide rather than fly,...

s. However, once Europeans arrived game animals were introduced by acclimatisation societies
Acclimatisation society
Acclimatisation societies were societies created in order to enrich the fauna of a region with animals and plants from around the world. The first such society was La Societé Zoologique d'Acclimatation founded in Paris in 1854 by Isidore Geoffroy Saint-Hilaire. Such societies spread quickly around...

 to provide New Zealanders with sport and a hunting resource. Deer, pigs, goats, rabbits, tahr
Tahr
Tahrs are three species of large Asian ungulates related to the wild goat. Until recently the three species were believed to be closely related and were placed in a single genus, Hemitragus. Genetic studies have proved that the three tahrs are not as closely related as thought earlier...

 and chamois
Chamois
The chamois, Rupicapra rupicapra, is a goat-antelope species native to mountains in Europe, including the Carpathian Mountains of Romania, the European Alps, the Tatra Mountains, the Balkans, parts of Turkey, and the Caucasus. The chamois has also been introduced to the South Island of New Zealand...

 all adapted well to the New Zealand terrain, and with no natural predators their population exploded. Government agencies view the animals as pests due to their effects on the natural environment
Natural environment
The natural environment encompasses all living and non-living things occurring naturally on Earth or some region thereof. It is an environment that encompasses the interaction of all living species....

 and on agricultural production, but hunters view them as a resource.

Shikar (India)

During the feudal and colonial
British Raj
British Raj was the British rule in the Indian subcontinent between 1858 and 1947; The term can also refer to the period of dominion...

 times in India
India
India , officially the Republic of India , is a country in South Asia. It is the seventh-largest country by geographical area, the second-most populous country with over 1.2 billion people, and the most populous democracy in the world...

 hunting was regarded as a wikt:regal sport in the numerous princely states, as many maharaja
Maharaja
Mahārāja is a Sanskrit title for a "great king" or "high king". The female equivalent title Maharani denotes either the wife of a Maharaja or, in states where that was customary, a woman ruling in her own right. The widow of a Maharaja is known as a Rajamata...

s, nawab
Nawab
A Nawab or Nawaab is an honorific title given to Muslim rulers of princely states in South Asia. It is the Muslim equivalent of the term "maharaja" that was granted to Hindu rulers....

s, as well as British officers maintained a whole corps of shikaris, who were native professional hunters. They would be headed by a master of the hunt, who might be styled mir-shikar. Often these were recruited from the normally low-ranking local tribes because of their traditional knowledge
Traditional knowledge
Traditional knowledge , indigenous knowledge , traditional environmental knowledge and local knowledge generally refer to the long-standing traditions and practices of certain regional, indigenous, or local communities. Traditional knowledge also encompasses the wisdom, knowledge, and teachings...

 of the environment and hunting techniques. Big game, such as Bengal tigers
Bengal Tiger
The Bengal tiger is a tiger subspecies native to the Indian subcontinent that in 2010 has been classified as endangered by IUCN...

, might be hunted from the back of an elephant.

Indian social norms
Norm (sociology)
Social norms are the accepted behaviors within a society or group. This sociological and social psychological term has been defined as "the rules that a group uses for appropriate and inappropriate values, beliefs, attitudes and behaviors. These rules may be explicit or implicit...

 are generally antagonistic to hunting, while a few sect
Sect
A sect is a group with distinctive religious, political or philosophical beliefs. Although in past it was mostly used to refer to religious groups, it has since expanded and in modern culture can refer to any organization that breaks away from a larger one to follow a different set of rules and...

s like the Bishnoi lay special emphasis on the conservation of particular species like the antelope
Antelope
Antelope is a term referring to many even-toed ungulate species indigenous to various regions in Africa and Eurasia. Antelopes comprise a miscellaneous group within the family Bovidae, encompassing those old-world species that are neither cattle, sheep, buffalo, bison, nor goats...

. India's Wildlife Protection Act of 1972
Wildlife Protection Act of 1972
The Wildlife Protection Act of 1972 refers to a sweeping package of legislation enacted in 1972 by the Government of India. Before 1972, India only had five designated national parks...

 bans the killing of all wild animals. However, the Chief Wildlife Warden may, if satisfied that any wild animal from a specified list has become dangerous to human life, or is so disabled or diseased as to be beyond recovery, permit any person to hunt such an animal. In this case the body of any wild animal killed or wounded becomes government property.

Safari

A safari, from a Swahili
Swahili language
Swahili or Kiswahili is a Bantu language spoken by various ethnic groups that inhabit several large stretches of the Mozambique Channel coastline from northern Kenya to northern Mozambique, including the Comoro Islands. It is also spoken by ethnic minority groups in Somalia...

 word meaning a long journey, especially in Africa is defined as an overland journey.

Safari as a distinctive way of hunting was popularised by the US author Ernest Hemingway
Ernest Hemingway
Ernest Miller Hemingway was an American author and journalist. His economic and understated style had a strong influence on 20th-century fiction, while his life of adventure and his public image influenced later generations. Hemingway produced most of his work between the mid-1920s and the...

 and President Theodore Roosevelt
Theodore Roosevelt
Theodore "Teddy" Roosevelt was the 26th President of the United States . He is noted for his exuberant personality, range of interests and achievements, and his leadership of the Progressive Movement, as well as his "cowboy" persona and robust masculinity...

. A safari may consist of several days or even weeks-long journey, with camping in the bush
The Bush
"The bush" is a term used for rural, undeveloped land or country areas in certain countries.-Australia:The term is iconic in Australia. In reference to the landscape, "bush" describes a wooded area, intermediate between a shrubland and a forest, generally of dry and nitrogen-poor soil, mostly...

 or jungle
Jungle
A Jungle is an area of land in the tropics overgrown with dense vegetation.The word jungle originates from the Sanskrit word jangala which referred to uncultivated land. Although the Sanskrit word refers to "dry land", it has been suggested that an Anglo-Indian interpretation led to its...

, while pursuing big game
Game (food)
Game is any animal hunted for food or not normally domesticated. Game animals are also hunted for sport.The type and range of animals hunted for food varies in different parts of the world. This will be influenced by climate, animal diversity, local taste and locally accepted view about what can or...

. Nowadays, it's often used to describe tours through African national parks to watch or hunt wildlife.

Hunters are usually tourists, accompanied by license
Hunting license
A hunting license is a regulatory or legal mechanism to control recreational and sports hunting.Hunting may be regulated informally by "unwritten law", "self restraint", or "morality" and by laws "enforced by government authority."...

d and highly regulated
Regulation
Regulation is administrative legislation that constitutes or constrains rights and allocates responsibilities. It can be distinguished from primary legislation on the one hand and judge-made law on the other...

 professional hunters, local guides, skinners
Skinner (profession)
A Skinner is a person who skins animals such as cattle, sheep, and pigs, part or whole. Historically, skinners engaged in the hide and fur trades.A "mule skinner", slang for muleteer, is a driver of mules....

, and porters
Porter (carrier)
A porter, also called a bearer, is a person who shifts objects for others.-Historical meaning:Human adaptability and flexibility early led to the use of humans for shifting gear...

 in more difficult terrains. A special safari type is the solo-safari, where all the license acquiring, stalking, preparation, and outfitting is done by the hunter himself.

Photo-safaris were popular even before the advent of ecotourism
Ecotourism
Ecotourism is a form of tourism visiting fragile, pristine, and usually protected areas, intended as a low impact and often small scale alternative to standard commercial tourism...

. The synonym "bloodless hunt" for hunting with the use of film and a still photographic camera was first used by the Polish photographer Włodzimierz Puchalski.

United Kingdom

Fox hunting
Fox hunting
Fox hunting is an activity involving the tracking, chase, and sometimes killing of a fox, traditionally a red fox, by trained foxhounds or other scent hounds, and a group of followers led by a master of foxhounds, who follow the hounds on foot or on horseback.Fox hunting originated in its current...

 is the type of hunting most closely associated with the United Kingdom. Originally a form of vermin
Vermin
Vermin is a term applied to various animal species regarded by some as pests or nuisances and especially to those associated with the carrying of disease. Since the term is defined in relation to human activities, which species are included will vary from area to area and even person to person...

 control to protect livestock, it became a popular social activity for newly wealthy upper classes in Victorian times
Victorian era
The Victorian era of British history was the period of Queen Victoria's reign from 20 June 1837 until her death on 22 January 1901. It was a long period of peace, prosperity, refined sensibilities and national self-confidence...

, and a traditional rural activity for riders and foot followers alike. Similar to fox hunting in many ways is the chasing of hare
Hare
Hares and jackrabbits are leporids belonging to the genus Lepus. Hares less than one year old are called leverets. Four species commonly known as types of hare are classified outside of Lepus: the hispid hare , and three species known as red rock hares .Hares are very fast-moving...

s with hound
Hound
A hound is a type of dog that assists hunters by tracking or chasing the animal being hunted. It can be contrasted with the gun dog, which assists hunters by identifying the location of prey, and with the retriever, which recovers shot quarry...

s. Sight hounds, such as greyhounds, may be used to run down hare in coursing
Coursing
Coursing is the pursuit of game or other animals by dogs—chiefly greyhounds and other sighthounds—catching their prey by speed, running by sight and not by scent. Coursing was a common hunting technique, practised by the nobility, the landed and wealthy, and commoners with sighthounds and lurchers...

, with scent hound
Scent hound
Scent hounds are a type of hound that primarily hunts by scent rather than sight. The Scenthound breeds are generally regarded as having some of the most sensitive noses among canines....

s such as beagle
Beagle
The Beagle is a breed of small to medium-sized dog. A member of the Hound Group, it is similar in appearance to the Foxhound, but smaller, with shorter legs and longer, softer ears. Beagles are scent hounds, developed primarily for tracking hare, rabbit, and other game...

s. Other sorts of foxhound
Foxhound
A foxhound is a type of large hunting hound. Foxhounds hunt in packs and, like all scent hounds, have a strong sense of smell. They are used in hunts for foxes, hence the name. When out hunting they are followed usually on horseback and will travel several miles to catch their target. These dogs...

s may also be used for hunting stags (deer)
STAG
STAG: A Test of Love is a reality TV show hosted by Tommy Habeeb. Each episode profiles an engaged couple a week or two before their wedding. The cameras then follow the groom on his bachelor party...

 or mink
American Mink
The American mink is a semi-aquatic species of Mustelid native to North America, though human intervention has expanded its range to many parts of Europe and South America. Because of this, it is classed as Least Concern by the IUCN. Since the extinction of the sea mink, the American mink is the...

. Hunting deer on foot using stealth without hounds or horses is called deer stalking
Deer stalking
Deer stalking is a British term for the stealthy pursuit of deer for sporting purposes, historically with dogs such as Scottish Deerhounds, or in modern times typically with a high powered rifle fitted with a telescopic sight to hunt them....

.

These forms of hunting have been controversial in the UK. Animal welfare
Animal welfare
Animal welfare is the physical and psychological well-being of animals.The term animal welfare can also mean human concern for animal welfare or a position in a debate on animal ethics and animal rights...

 supporters believe that hunting causes unnecessary suffering to foxes, horses, and hounds. Proponents argue that it is culturally and perhaps economically important. Using dogs to chase wild mammals was made illegal
Fox hunting legislation
Fox hunting legislation refers to various laws and legislative history related to fox hunting in the United Kingdom and elsewhere.-History:Hunting has been regulated for many centuries, most often for the benefit of the upper class. The word "paradise", for example, comes from a Greek word for...

 in February 2005 by the Hunting Act 2004
Hunting Act 2004
The Hunting Act 2004 is an Act of the Parliament of the United Kingdom. The effect of the Act is to outlaw hunting with dogs in England and Wales from 18 February 2005...

.

Shooting traditions
The shooting of game birds, especially pheasant
Pheasant
Pheasants refer to some members of the Phasianinae subfamily of Phasianidae in the order Galliformes.Pheasants are characterised by strong sexual dimorphism, males being highly ornate with bright colours and adornments such as wattles and long tails. Males are usually larger than females and have...

s, still exists in the UK, with the British Association for Shooting and Conservation
British Association for Shooting and Conservation
The British Association for Shooting and Conservation is a non-profit making Industrial and Provident Society, whose mission is to promote and protect sporting shooting and the well-being of the countryside throughout the United Kingdom and overseas. With around 130,000 members and 105 staff BASC...

 saying that over a million people per year participate in shooting, although this figure includes game shooting, clay pigeon shooting
Clay pigeon shooting
Clay pigeon shooting, also known as clay target shooting, and formally known as Inanimate Bird Shooting, is the art of shooting at special flying targets, known as clay pigeons or clay targets, with a shotgun or any type of firearm....

, and target shooting
Shooting sports
A shooting sport is a competitive sport involving tests of proficiency using various types of guns such as firearms and airguns . Hunting is also a shooting sport, and indeed shooting live pigeons was an Olympic event...

.

Shooting, as opposed to traditional hunting, requires little questing for game—around thirty-five million birds are released onto shooting estates every year, some having been factory farmed
Factory farming
Factory farming is a term referring to the process of raising livestock in confinement at high stocking density, where a farm operates as a factory — a practice typical in industrial farming by agribusinesses. The main products of this industry are meat, milk and eggs for human consumption...

. Shoots can be elaborate affairs with guns placed in assigned positions, and assistants to help load shotgun
Shotgun
A shotgun is a firearm that is usually designed to be fired from the shoulder, which uses the energy of a fixed shell to fire a number of small spherical pellets called shot, or a solid projectile called a slug...

s. When in position, "beaters" move through the areas of cover, swinging sticks or flags to drive the game out. Such events are often called "drives". The open season for grouse
Grouse
Grouse are a group of birds from the order Galliformes. They are sometimes considered a family Tetraonidae, though the American Ornithologists' Union and many others include grouse as a subfamily Tetraoninae in the family Phasianidae...

 in the UK begins on 12 August, the so-called Glorious Twelfth
Glorious Twelfth
The Glorious Twelfth is usually used to refer to 12 August, the start of the shooting season for Red Grouse and to a lesser extent the Ptarmigan in the United Kingdom. This is one of the busiest days in the shooting season, with large amounts of game being shot...

. The definition of game in the United Kingdom is governed by the Game Act 1831
Game Act 1831
The Game Act 1831 is an Act of Parliament in the United Kingdom which was passed to protect game birds by establishing a close season when they could not be legally taken. The act also established the need for game licences and the appointing of gamekeepers...

.

United States

North American hunting pre-dates the United States by thousands of years, and was an important part of many pre-Columbian
Pre-Columbian
The pre-Columbian era incorporates all period subdivisions in the history and prehistory of the Americas before the appearance of significant European influences on the American continents, spanning the time of the original settlement in the Upper Paleolithic period to European colonization during...

 Native American cultures. Native Americans retain some hunting rights, and are exempt from some laws as part of Indian treaties and otherwise under federal law
Federal law
Federal law is the body of law created by the federal government of a country. A federal government is formed when a group of political units, such as states or provinces join together in a federation, surrendering their individual sovereignty and many powers to the central government while...

—examples include eagle feather law
Eagle feather law
The eagle feather law provides many exceptions to federal wildlife laws regarding eagles and other migratory birds to enable Native Americans to continue their traditional practices....

s and exemptions in the Marine Mammal Protection Act
Marine Mammal Protection Act
The Marine Mammal Protection Act of 1972 was the first article of legislation to call specifically for an ecosystem approach to natural resource management and conservation. MMPA prohibits the taking of marine mammals, and enacts a moratorium on the import, export, and sale of any marine mammal,...

. This is considered particularly important in Alaskan native communities.

Hunting is primarily regulated by state law
State law
In the United States, state law is the law of each separate U.S. state, as passed by the state legislature and adjudicated by state courts. It exists in parallel, and sometimes in conflict with, United States federal law. These disputes are often resolved by the federal courts.-See also:*List of U.S...

; additional regulations are imposed through United States environmental law in the case of migratory birds and endangered species
Endangered species
An endangered species is a population of organisms which is at risk of becoming extinct because it is either few in numbers, or threatened by changing environmental or predation parameters...

. Regulations vary widely from state to state, and govern the areas, time periods, techniques and methods by which specific game animals may be hunted. Some states make a distinction between protected species and unprotected species (often vermin
Vermin
Vermin is a term applied to various animal species regarded by some as pests or nuisances and especially to those associated with the carrying of disease. Since the term is defined in relation to human activities, which species are included will vary from area to area and even person to person...

 or varmints for which there are no hunting regulations). Hunters of protected species require a hunting license
Hunting license
A hunting license is a regulatory or legal mechanism to control recreational and sports hunting.Hunting may be regulated informally by "unwritten law", "self restraint", or "morality" and by laws "enforced by government authority."...

 in all states, for which completion of a hunting safety course is sometimes a prerequisite.

Typically game animals are divided into several categories for regulatory purposes. Typical categories, along with example species, are as follows:
  • Big game: white-tailed deer
    White-tailed Deer
    The white-tailed deer , also known as the Virginia deer or simply as the whitetail, is a medium-sized deer native to the United States , Canada, Mexico, Central America, and South America as far south as Peru...

    , mule deer
    Mule Deer
    The mule deer is a deer indigenous to western North America. The Mule Deer gets its name from its large mule-like ears. There are believed to be several subspecies, including the black-tailed deer...

    , moose
    Moose
    The moose or Eurasian elk is the largest extant species in the deer family. Moose are distinguished by the palmate antlers of the males; other members of the family have antlers with a dendritic configuration...

    , elk
    Elk
    The Elk is the large deer, also called Cervus canadensis or wapiti, of North America and eastern Asia.Elk may also refer to:Other antlered mammals:...

    , caribou, bighorn sheep
    Bighorn Sheep
    The bighorn sheep is a species of sheep in North America named for its large horns. These horns can weigh up to , while the sheep themselves weigh up to . Recent genetic testing indicates that there are three distinct subspecies of Ovis canadensis, one of which is endangered: Ovis canadensis sierrae...

    , pronghorn
    Pronghorn
    The pronghorn is a species of artiodactyl mammal endemic to interior western and central North America. Though not an antelope, it is often known colloquially in North America as the prong buck, pronghorn antelope, or simply antelope, as it closely resembles the true antelopes of the Old World and...

    , boar
    Boar
    Wild boar, also wild pig, is a species of the pig genus Sus, part of the biological family Suidae. The species includes many subspecies. It is the wild ancestor of the domestic pig, an animal with which it freely hybridises...

    , javelina
  • Small game: rabbit
    Rabbit
    Rabbits are small mammals in the family Leporidae of the order Lagomorpha, found in several parts of the world...

    , hare
    Hare
    Hares and jackrabbits are leporids belonging to the genus Lepus. Hares less than one year old are called leverets. Four species commonly known as types of hare are classified outside of Lepus: the hispid hare , and three species known as red rock hares .Hares are very fast-moving...

    , squirrel
    Squirrel
    Squirrels belong to a large family of small or medium-sized rodents called the Sciuridae. The family includes tree squirrels, ground squirrels, chipmunks, marmots , flying squirrels, and prairie dogs. Squirrels are indigenous to the Americas, Eurasia, and Africa and have been introduced to Australia...

    , oppossum, raccoon
    Raccoon
    Procyon is a genus of nocturnal mammals, comprising three species commonly known as raccoons, in the family Procyonidae. The most familiar species, the common raccoon , is often known simply as "the" raccoon, as the two other raccoon species in the genus are native only to the tropics and are...

    , porcupine
    Porcupine
    Porcupines are rodents with a coat of sharp spines, or quills, that defend or camouflage them from predators. They are indigenous to the Americas, southern Asia, and Africa. Porcupines are the third largest of the rodents, behind the capybara and the beaver. Most porcupines are about long, with...

    , skunk
    Skunk
    Skunks are mammals best known for their ability to secrete a liquid with a strong, foul odor. General appearance varies from species to species, from black-and-white to brown or cream colored. Skunks belong to the family Mephitidae and to the order Carnivora...

    , ring-tailed cat
    Ring-tailed Cat
    The ringtail is a mammal of the raccoon family , native to arid regions of North America. It is also known as the ringtail cat, ring-tailed cat or miner's cat, and is also sometimes mistakenly called a "civet cat"...

    , armadillo
    Armadillo
    Armadillos are New World placental mammals, known for having a leathery armor shell. Dasypodidae is the only surviving family in the order Cingulata, part of the superorder Xenarthra along with the anteaters and sloths. The word armadillo is Spanish for "little armored one"...

  • Furbearers: beaver
    Beaver
    The beaver is a primarily nocturnal, large, semi-aquatic rodent. Castor includes two extant species, North American Beaver and Eurasian Beaver . Beavers are known for building dams, canals, and lodges . They are the second-largest rodent in the world...

    , red fox
    Red Fox
    The red fox is the largest of the true foxes, as well as being the most geographically spread member of the Carnivora, being distributed across the entire northern hemisphere from the Arctic Circle to North Africa, Central America, and the steppes of Asia...

    , mink
    Mink
    There are two living species referred to as "mink": the European Mink and the American Mink. The extinct Sea Mink is related to the American Mink, but was much larger. All three species are dark-colored, semi-aquatic, carnivorous mammals of the family Mustelidae, which also includes the weasels and...

    , pine martin, musk rat, otter
    Otter
    The Otters are twelve species of semi-aquatic mammals which feed on fish and shellfish, and also other invertebrates, amphibians, birds and small mammals....

    , bobcat
    Bobcat
    The bobcat is a North American mammal of the cat family Felidae, appearing during the Irvingtonian stage of around 1.8 million years ago . With twelve recognized subspecies, it ranges from southern Canada to northern Mexico, including most of the continental United States...

  • Predators: cougar (mountain lion and panther
    Panthera
    Panthera is a genus of the family Felidae , which contains four well-known living species: the tiger, the lion, the jaguar, and the leopard. The genus comprises about half of the Pantherinae subfamily, the big cats...

    ), bear, coyote
    Coyote
    The coyote , also known as the American jackal or the prairie wolf, is a species of canine found throughout North and Central America, ranging from Panama in the south, north through Mexico, the United States and Canada...

  • Upland game bird
    Upland game bird
    Upland game bird is an American term which refers to those non-water fowl game birds hunted with pointing breeds, flushing spaniels, and retrievers...

    : grouse
    Grouse
    Grouse are a group of birds from the order Galliformes. They are sometimes considered a family Tetraonidae, though the American Ornithologists' Union and many others include grouse as a subfamily Tetraoninae in the family Phasianidae...

    , turkey
    Turkey (bird)
    A turkey is a large bird in the genus Meleagris. One species, Meleagris gallopavo, commonly known as the Wild Turkey, is native to the forests of North America. The domestic turkey is a descendant of this species...

    , chukar
    Chukar
    The Chukar Partridge or Chukar is a Eurasian upland gamebird in the pheasant family Phasianidae. It has been considered to form a superspecies complex along with the Rock Partridge, Philby's Partridge and Przevalski's Partridge and treated in the past as conspecific particularly with the first...

    , pheasant
    Pheasant
    Pheasants refer to some members of the Phasianinae subfamily of Phasianidae in the order Galliformes.Pheasants are characterised by strong sexual dimorphism, males being highly ornate with bright colours and adornments such as wattles and long tails. Males are usually larger than females and have...

    , quail
    Quail
    Quail is a collective name for several genera of mid-sized birds generally considered in the order Galliformes. Old World quail are found in the family Phasianidae, while New World quail are found in the family Odontophoridae...

    , dove
    Dove
    Pigeons and doves constitute the bird family Columbidae within the order Columbiformes, which include some 300 species of near passerines. In general terms "dove" and "pigeon" are used somewhat interchangeably...

  • Waterfowl
    Waterfowl
    Waterfowl are certain wildfowl of the order Anseriformes, especially members of the family Anatidae, which includes ducks, geese, and swans....

    : duck, teal
    Teal
    Teal may mean:* Teal , a medium greenish-blue color* Various ducks:** Baikal Teal, Anas formosa** Black Teal, Aythya novaeseelandiae** Blue-winged Teal, Anas discors** Brown Teal, Anas aucklandica** Campbell Teal Anas nesiotis...

    , merganser, geese
    Goose
    The word goose is the English name for a group of waterfowl, belonging to the family Anatidae. This family also includes swans, most of which are larger than true geese, and ducks, which are smaller....

    , swan


Hunting big game typically requires a "tag" for each animal harvested. Tags must be purchased in addition to the hunting license, and the number of tags issued to an individual is typically limited. In cases where there are more prospective hunters than the quota for that species, tags are usually assigned by lottery. Tags may be further restricted to a specific area or wildlife management unit. Hunting migratory waterfowl requires a duck stamp from the Fish and Wildlife Service
United States Fish and Wildlife Service
The United States Fish and Wildlife Service is a federal government agency within the United States Department of the Interior dedicated to the management of fish, wildlife, and natural habitats...

.

Harvest of animals other than big game is typically restricted by a bag limit and a possession limit. A bag limit is a maximum number of a specific animal species that an individual can harvest in a single day. A possession limit is a maximum number of a specific animal species that can be in an individual's possession at any time.

Shooting

Gun usage in hunting is typically regulated by game category, area within the state, and time period. Regulations for big game hunting often specify a minimum calibre or muzzle energy
Muzzle energy
Muzzle energy is the kinetic energy of a bullet as it is expelled from the muzzle of a firearm. It is often used as a rough indication of the destructive potential of a given firearm or load...

 for firearm
Firearm
A firearm is a weapon that launches one, or many, projectile at high velocity through confined burning of a propellant. This subsonic burning process is technically known as deflagration, as opposed to supersonic combustion known as a detonation. In older firearms, the propellant was typically...

s. The use of rifle
Rifle
A rifle is a firearm designed to be fired from the shoulder, with a barrel that has a helical groove or pattern of grooves cut into the barrel walls. The raised areas of the rifling are called "lands," which make contact with the projectile , imparting spin around an axis corresponding to the...

s is often banned for safety reasons in areas with high population densities
Population density
Population density is a measurement of population per unit area or unit volume. It is frequently applied to living organisms, and particularly to humans...

 or limited topographic relief
Terrain
Terrain, or land relief, is the vertical and horizontal dimension of land surface. When relief is described underwater, the term bathymetry is used...

. Regulations may also limit or ban the use of lead
Lead
Lead is a main-group element in the carbon group with the symbol Pb and atomic number 82. Lead is a soft, malleable poor metal. It is also counted as one of the heavy metals. Metallic lead has a bluish-white color after being freshly cut, but it soon tarnishes to a dull grayish color when exposed...

 in ammunition
Ammunition
Ammunition is a generic term derived from the French language la munition which embraced all material used for war , but which in time came to refer specifically to gunpowder and artillery. The collective term for all types of ammunition is munitions...

 because of environmental concerns. Specific seasons for bow
Bow (weapon)
The bow and arrow is a projectile weapon system that predates recorded history and is common to most cultures.-Description:A bow is a flexible arc that shoots aerodynamic projectiles by means of elastic energy. Essentially, the bow is a form of spring powered by a string or cord...

 hunting or muzzle-loading
Muzzleloader
A muzzleloader is any firearm into which the projectile and usually the propellant charge is loaded from the muzzle of the gun . This is distinct from the more popular modern designs of breech-loading firearms...

 black powder guns are often established to limit competition with hunters using more effective weapons.

Hunting in the United States is not associated with any particular class or culture; a 2006 poll showed seventy-eight percent of Americans supported legal hunting, although relatively few Americans actually hunt. At the beginning of the 21st century, just six percent of Americans hunted. Southerners
Southern United States
The Southern United States—commonly referred to as the American South, Dixie, or simply the South—constitutes a large distinctive area in the southeastern and south-central United States...

 in states along the eastern seaboard hunted at a rate of five percent, slightly below the national average, and while hunting was more common in other parts of the South at nine percent, these rates did not surpass those of the Plains states, where twelve percent of Midwesterners hunted. Hunting in other areas of the country fell below the national average. Overall, in the 1996–2006 period, the number of hunters over the age of sixteen declined by ten percent, a drop attributable to a number of factors including habitat loss
Habitat destruction
Habitat destruction is the process in which natural habitat is rendered functionally unable to support the species present. In this process, the organisms that previously used the site are displaced or destroyed, reducing biodiversity. Habitat destruction by human activity mainly for the purpose of...

 and changes in recreation habits.

Regulation

Regulation of hunting within the United States dates from the 19th century. Some modern hunters see themselves as conservationists
Conservation movement
The conservation movement, also known as nature conservation, is a political, environmental and a social movement that seeks to protect natural resources including animal, fungus and plant species as well as their habitat for the future....

 and sportsmen in the mode of Theodore Roosevelt
Theodore Roosevelt
Theodore "Teddy" Roosevelt was the 26th President of the United States . He is noted for his exuberant personality, range of interests and achievements, and his leadership of the Progressive Movement, as well as his "cowboy" persona and robust masculinity...

 and the Boone and Crockett Club
Boone and Crockett Club
The Boone and Crockett Club conservationist organization, founded in the United States in 1887 by Theodore Roosevelt. The club was named in honor of Daniel Boone and Davy Crockett, whom the club's founders viewed as ethical hunters and honest men who loved the outdoors and earthly pursuits...

. Local hunting clubs and national organisations provide hunter education and help protect the future of the sport by buying land for future hunting use. Some groups represent a specific hunting interest, such as Ducks Unlimited
Ducks Unlimited
Ducks Unlimited is an international non-profit organization dedicated to the conservation of wetlands and associated upland habitats for waterfowl, other wildlife, and people. It currently has approximately 780,000 members, mostly in the United States and Canada.-Introduction:Ducks Unlimited was...

, Pheasants Forever
Pheasants Forever
Pheasants Forever, Inc. is a nonprofit conservation organization in the United States formed in response to the continuing decline of upland wildlife. Pheasants Forever have 700 chapters, including 74 in Minnesota, and about 110,000 members Nationwide, including 22,500 in Minnesota. Quail Forever,...

, or Delta Waterfowl Foundation
Delta Waterfowl Foundation
Delta Waterfowl Foundation is a non-profit organization operating in both Canada and in the United States whose mission is to provide knowledge, leaders and science-based solutions that efficiently conserve waterfowl and secure the future for waterfowl hunting...

. Many hunting groups also participate in lobbying the federal government and state government.

Each year, nearly $200 million in hunters' federal excise taxes are distributed to state agencies to support wildlife management programs, the purchase of lands open to hunters, and hunter education and safety classes. Since 1934 the sale of Federal Duck Stamp
Federal Duck Stamp
The federal duck stamp was created through a wetlands conservation program. President Herbert Hoover signed the Migratory Bird Conservation Act in 1929 to authorize the acquisition and preservation of wetlands as waterfowl habitat....

s, a required purchase for migratory waterfowl
Waterfowl
Waterfowl are certain wildfowl of the order Anseriformes, especially members of the family Anatidae, which includes ducks, geese, and swans....

 hunters over sixteen-years-old, has raised over $700 million to help purchase more than 5200000 acre (8,125 sq mi; 21,043.7 km²) of habitat for the National Wildlife Refuge System lands that support waterfowl and many other wildlife species, and are often open to hunting. States also collect monies from hunting licenses to assist with management of game animals, as designated by law. A key task of federal and state park ranger
Park ranger
A park ranger or forest ranger is a person entrusted with protecting and preserving parklands – national, state, provincial, or local parks. Different countries use different names for the position. Ranger is the favored term in the United States, Canada, and the United Kingdom. Within the United...

s and game warden
Game warden
A game warden is an employee who has the role of protecting wildlife. Game wardens may also be referred to as conservation officers or wildlife officers...

s is to enforce laws and regulations related to hunting, including species protection, hunting seasons, and hunting bans.

Varmint hunting

Varmint hunting is an American phrase for the selective killing of non-game animals seen as pests. While not always an efficient form of pest control
Pest control
Pest control refers to the regulation or management of a species defined as a pest, usually because it is perceived to be detrimental to a person's health, the ecology or the economy.-History:...

, varmint hunting achieves selective control of pests while providing recreation, and is much less regulated. Varmint species are often responsible for detrimental effects on crops, livestock, landscaping
Landscaping
Landscaping refers to any activity that modifies the visible features of an area of land, including:# living elements, such as flora or fauna; or what is commonly referred to as gardening, the art and craft of growing plants with a goal of creating a beautiful environment within the landscape.#...

, infrastructure
Infrastructure
Infrastructure is basic physical and organizational structures needed for the operation of a society or enterprise, or the services and facilities necessary for an economy to function...

, and pets. Some animals, such as wild rabbits or squirrels, may be utilised for fur or meat, but often no use is made of the carcass. Which species are "varmints" depends on the circumstance and area. Common varmints may include various rodent
Rodent
Rodentia is an order of mammals also known as rodents, characterised by two continuously growing incisors in the upper and lower jaws which must be kept short by gnawing....

s, coyotes, crow
Crow
Crows form the genus Corvus in the family Corvidae. Ranging in size from the relatively small pigeon-size jackdaws to the Common Raven of the Holarctic region and Thick-billed Raven of the highlands of Ethiopia, the 40 or so members of this genus occur on all temperate continents and several...

s, fox
Fox
Fox is a common name for many species of omnivorous mammals belonging to the Canidae family. Foxes are small to medium-sized canids , characterized by possessing a long narrow snout, and a bushy tail .Members of about 37 species are referred to as foxes, of which only 12 species actually belong to...

es, feral cats, and feral hog
Pig
A pig is any of the animals in the genus Sus, within the Suidae family of even-toed ungulates. Pigs include the domestic pig, its ancestor the wild boar, and several other wild relatives...

s. Some animals once considered varmints are now protected, such as wolves. In the US state of Louisiana
Louisiana
Louisiana is a state located in the southern region of the United States of America. Its capital is Baton Rouge and largest city is New Orleans. Louisiana is the only state in the U.S. with political subdivisions termed parishes, which are local governments equivalent to counties...

, a non-native rodent known as a nutria have become so destructive to the local ecosystem that the state has initiated a bounty
Bounty (reward)
A bounty is a payment or reward often offered by a group as an incentive for the accomplishment of a task by someone usually not associated with the group. Bounties are most commonly issued for the capture or retrieval of a person or object. They are typically in the form of money...

 program to help control the population. Feral dogs and cats, rats, starling
Starling
Starlings are small to medium-sized passerine birds in the family Sturnidae. The name "Sturnidae" comes from the Latin word for starling, sturnus. Many Asian species, particularly the larger ones, are called mynas, and many African species are known as glossy starlings because of their iridescent...

s, English sparrows, and pigeons may be hunted without a hunting license in the United States.

Fair chase

The principles of the fair chase have been a part of the American hunting tradition for over one-hundred years. The role of the hunter-conservationist, popularised by Theodore Roosevelt, has been central to the development of the modern fair chase tradition.

When internet hunting
Internet hunting
Internet hunting is the practice of hunting via remotely controlled firearms that can be aimed and shot using online webcams. The first internet hunting website, Live-Shot.com, was created in 2005 by John Lockwood, who saw it as a way to provide an authentic hunting experience for disabled persons...

 was introduced in 2005, allowing people to hunt over the internet using remotely controlled guns, the practice was widely criticised by hunters as violating the principles of fair chase. As a representative of the National Rifle Association (NRA)
National Rifle Association
The National Rifle Association of America is an American non-profit 501 civil rights organization which advocates for the protection of the Second Amendment of the United States Bill of Rights and the promotion of firearm ownership rights as well as marksmanship, firearm safety, and the protection...

 explained, "[t]he NRA has always maintained that fair chase, being in the field with your firearm or bow, is an important element of hunting tradition. Sitting at your desk in front of your computer, clicking at a mouse, has nothing to do with hunting".

Ranches

Indian blackbuck
Blackbuck
Blackbuck is a species of antelope native to the Indian subcontinent. Their range decreased sharply during the 20th century. Since 2003, the IUCN lists the species as near threatened....

, nilgai
Nilgai
The nilgai , sometimes called nilgau, is an antelope, and is one of the most commonly seen wild animals of central and northern India and eastern Pakistan; it is also present in parts of southern Nepal. The mature males appear ox-like and are also known as blue bulls...

, axis deer, fallow deer
Fallow Deer
The Fallow Deer is a ruminant mammal belonging to the family Cervidae. This common species is native to western Eurasia, but has been introduced widely elsewhere. It often includes the rarer Persian Fallow Deer as a subspecies , while others treat it as an entirely different species The Fallow...

 and barasingha
Barasingha
The Barasingha or Swamp deer is a deer species currently found in isolated localities in north and central India, and southwestern Nepal, and is extinct in Pakistan and Bangladesh....

 can now be found on hunting ranches in Texas, where they were introduced for sport hunting. Hunters can pay upwards of $4000 as fees for hunting a barasingha.

Russia

The Russia
Russia
Russia or , officially known as both Russia and the Russian Federation , is a country in northern Eurasia. It is a federal semi-presidential republic, comprising 83 federal subjects...

n imperial hunts evolved from hunting traditions of early Russian rulers—Grand Prince
Grand Prince
The title grand prince or great prince ranked in honour below emperor and tsar and above a sovereign prince .Grand duke is the usual and established, though not literal, translation of these terms in English and Romance languages, which do not normally use separate words for a "prince" who reigns...

s and Tsars—under the influence of hunting customs of European royal courts. The imperial hunts were organised mainly in Peterhof, Tsarskoye Selo
Tsarskoye Selo
Tsarskoye Selo is the town containing a former Russian residence of the imperial family and visiting nobility, located south from the center of St. Petersburg. It is now part of the town of Pushkin and of the World Heritage Site Saint Petersburg and Related Groups of Monuments.-History:In...

, and Gatchina
Gatchina
Gatchina is a town and the administrative center of Gatchinsky District of Leningrad Oblast, Russia, located south of St. Petersburg by the road leading to Pskov...

.

Wildlife management

Hunting gives resource managers
Wildlife management
Wildlife management attempts to balance the needs of wildlife with the needs of people using the best available science. Wildlife management can include game keeping, wildlife conservation and pest control...

 an important tool in managing populations that might exceed the carrying capacity
Carrying capacity
The carrying capacity of a biological species in an environment is the maximum population size of the species that the environment can sustain indefinitely, given the food, habitat, water and other necessities available in the environment...

 of their habitat
Habitat
* Habitat , a place where a species lives and grows*Human habitat, a place where humans live, work or play** Space habitat, a space station intended as a permanent settlement...

 and threaten the well-being of other species, or, in some instances, damage human health or safety. Hunting reduces intraspecific competition
Intraspecific competition
Intraspecific competition is a particular form of competition in which members of the same species vie for the same resource in an ecosystem...

 for food and shelter, reducing mortality among the remaining animals. Some environmentalist
Environmentalist
An environmentalist broadly supports the goals of the environmental movement, "a political and ethical movement that seeks to improve and protect the quality of the natural environment through changes to environmentally harmful human activities"...

s assert that (re)introducing predators would achieve the same end with greater efficiency and less negative effect, such as introducing significant amounts of free lead
Lead
Lead is a main-group element in the carbon group with the symbol Pb and atomic number 82. Lead is a soft, malleable poor metal. It is also counted as one of the heavy metals. Metallic lead has a bluish-white color after being freshly cut, but it soon tarnishes to a dull grayish color when exposed...

 into the environment and food chain
Food chain
A food web depicts feeding connections in an ecological community. Ecologists can broadly lump all life forms into one of two categories called trophic levels: 1) the autotrophs, and 2) the heterotrophs...

. Hunters often disagree, arguing that hunting is more selective, removing fewer old, sick, or young animals than natural predation. Aldo Leopold
Aldo Leopold
Aldo Leopold was an American author, scientist, ecologist, forester, and environmentalist. He was a professor at the University of Wisconsin and is best known for his book A Sand County Almanac , which has sold over two million copies...

, an early environmentalist and hunter, also believed hunting could be used to manage animal populations.

Management agencies sometimes rely on hunting to control specific animal populations, as has been the case with deer in North America. These hunts may sometimes be carried out by professional shooters although others may include amateur hunters. Many US city and local governments hire professional and amateur hunters each year to reduce populations of animals such as deer that are becoming hazardous in a restricted area, such as neighbourhood parks and metropolitan
Metropolitan area
The term metropolitan area refers to a region consisting of a densely populated urban core and its less-populated surrounding territories, sharing industry, infrastructure, and housing. A metropolitan area usually encompasses multiple jurisdictions and municipalities: neighborhoods, townships,...

 open spaces.

A large part of managing populations involves managing the number and, sometimes, the size or age of animals harvested so as to ensure the sustainability of the population. Tools which are frequently used to control harvest are bag limits and season closures, although gear restrictions such as archery-only seasons are becoming increasingly popular in an effort to reduce hunter success rates.

Bag limits

Bag limits are provisions under the law which control how many animals of a given species or group of species can be killed, although there are often species for which bag limits do not apply. There are also jurisdiction
Jurisdiction
Jurisdiction is the practical authority granted to a formally constituted legal body or to a political leader to deal with and make pronouncements on legal matters and, by implication, to administer justice within a defined area of responsibility...

s where bag limits are not applied at all, or are not applied under certain circumstances. The phrase "bag limits" comes from the custom among hunters of small game to carry successful kills in a small basket, similar to a fishing creel.

Where bag limits are used there can be daily or seasonal bag limits; for example, ducks can often be harvested at a rate of six per hunter per day. Big game, like moose
Moose
The moose or Eurasian elk is the largest extant species in the deer family. Moose are distinguished by the palmate antlers of the males; other members of the family have antlers with a dendritic configuration...

, most often have a seasonal bag limit of one animal per hunter. Bag limits may also regulate the size, sex, or age of animal that a hunter can kill. In many cases, bag limits are designed to more equitably allocate harvest among the hunting population rather than to protect animal populations.

Closed and open season

A closed season
Closed season
A closed season is a hunting term used to describe the time of the year during which hunting an animal of a given species is contrary to law. Typically, closed seasons are designed to protect a species when they are most vulnerable or, sometimes, to protect them during their breeding season.-...

 is a hunting term used to describe a time during which hunting an animal of a given species is contrary to law. Typically, closed seasons are designed to protect a species when they are most vulnerable, or to protect them during their breeding season
Breeding season
The breeding season is the most suitable season, usually with favourable conditions and abundant food and water, for breeding among some wild animals and birds . Species with a breeding season have naturally evolved to have sexual intercourse during a certain time of year in order to achieve the...

. By extension, the period that is not the closed season is known as the open season
Open season (hunting)
Open season is a hunting term used to describe the time of the year when a particular wildlife species is allowed to be hunted as per local wildlife conservation law...

.

Laws

Illegal hunting and harvesting of wild species contrary to local and international conservation and wildlife management
Wildlife management
Wildlife management attempts to balance the needs of wildlife with the needs of people using the best available science. Wildlife management can include game keeping, wildlife conservation and pest control...

 laws is termed poaching
Poaching
Poaching is the illegal taking of wild plants or animals contrary to local and international conservation and wildlife management laws. Violations of hunting laws and regulations are normally punishable by law and, collectively, such violations are known as poaching.It may be illegal and in...

. Violations of hunting laws and regulations involving poaching are normally punishable by law.

Methods

Historical, subsistence, and sport hunting techniques can differ radically, with modern hunting regulations often addressing issues of where, when, and how hunts are conducted. Techniques may vary depending on government regulations, a hunter's personal ethics, local custom, hunting-equipment, and the animal being hunted. Often a hunter will use a combination of more than one technique. Laws may forbid sport hunters from using some methods used primarily in poaching and wildlife management
Wildlife management
Wildlife management attempts to balance the needs of wildlife with the needs of people using the best available science. Wildlife management can include game keeping, wildlife conservation and pest control...

.
  • Baiting
    Bait (luring substance)
    Bait is any substance used to attract prey, e.g. in a mousetrap.-In Australia:Baiting in Australia refers to specific campaigns to control foxes, wild dogs and dingos by poisoning in areas where they are a problem...

    is the use of decoy
    Decoy
    A decoy is usually a person, device or event meant as a distraction, to conceal what an individual or a group might be looking for. Decoys have been used for centuries most notably in game hunting, but also in wartime and in the committing or resolving of crimes.-Duck decoy:The term duck decoy may...

    s, lures, scent, or food
  • Battue involves beating animals into a killing-zone or ambush
  • Beagling
    Beagling
    Beagling is the hunting of hares, rabbits, and occasionally foxes with beagles. A beagle pack is usually followed on foot. However, there is one pack of beagles in the U.S. which are distinguished as being the only hunting pack to hunt fox and be followed on horseback...

    is the use of beagle
    Beagle
    The Beagle is a breed of small to medium-sized dog. A member of the Hound Group, it is similar in appearance to the Foxhound, but smaller, with shorter legs and longer, softer ears. Beagles are scent hounds, developed primarily for tracking hare, rabbit, and other game...

    s in hunting rabbit
    Rabbit
    Rabbits are small mammals in the family Leporidae of the order Lagomorpha, found in several parts of the world...

    s, and sometimes in hunting fox
    Fox
    Fox is a common name for many species of omnivorous mammals belonging to the Canidae family. Foxes are small to medium-sized canids , characterized by possessing a long narrow snout, and a bushy tail .Members of about 37 species are referred to as foxes, of which only 12 species actually belong to...

    es
  • Beating uses beaters to flush out game and/or drive it into position
  • Blind hunting
    Hunting blind
    A hunting blind is a cover device for hunters, designed to reduce the chance of detection; ground blinds are an alternative to the traditional Treestand, movements in a well-designed ground blind can virtually be undetectable by the game....

    or stand hunting is waiting for animals from a concealed or elevated position
  • Calling is the use of animal noises to attract or drive animals
  • Camouflage
    Camouflage
    Camouflage is a method of concealment that allows an otherwise visible animal, military vehicle, or other object to remain unnoticed, by blending with its environment. Examples include a leopard's spotted coat, the battledress of a modern soldier and a leaf-mimic butterfly...

    is the use of visual or odour concealment to blend with the environment
  • Dogs
    Hunting dog
    A hunting dog refers to any dog who assists humans in hunting. There are several types of hunting dogs developed for various tasks. The major categories of hunting dogs include hounds, terriers, dachshunds, cur type dogs, and gun dogs...

    may be used to course
    Coursing
    Coursing is the pursuit of game or other animals by dogs—chiefly greyhounds and other sighthounds—catching their prey by speed, running by sight and not by scent. Coursing was a common hunting technique, practised by the nobility, the landed and wealthy, and commoners with sighthounds and lurchers...

     or to help flush, herd, drive, track, point at, pursue, or retrieve prey
  • Driving is the herding
    Herding
    Herding is the act of bringing individual animals together into a group , maintaining the group and moving the group from place to place—or any combination of those. While the layperson uses the term "herding", most individuals involved in the process term it mustering, "working stock" or...

     of animals in a particular direction, usually toward another hunter in the group
  • Flushing is the practice of scaring animals from concealed areas
  • Glassing is the use of optics,such as binoculars, to more easily locate animals
  • Glue is an indiscriminate passive form to kill birds
  • Internet hunting
    Internet hunting
    Internet hunting is the practice of hunting via remotely controlled firearms that can be aimed and shot using online webcams. The first internet hunting website, Live-Shot.com, was created in 2005 by John Lockwood, who saw it as a way to provide an authentic hunting experience for disabled persons...

    is a method of hunting over the internet using webcam
    Webcam
    A webcam is a video camera that feeds its images in real time to a computer or computer network, often via USB, ethernet, or Wi-Fi.Their most popular use is the establishment of video links, permitting computers to act as videophones or videoconference stations. This common use as a video camera...

    s and remotely controlled guns
  • Netting involves using net
    Net (device)
    A net, in its primary meaning, comprises fibers woven in a grid-like structure, and is very infrequently mentioned in discussions of philosophy. It blocks the passage of large items, while letting small items and fluids pass...

    s, including active netting with the use of cannon nets
    Cannon netting
    Cannon-netting is a method of catching large numbers of animals, often birds, usually to band them, or otherwise tag them, as well as acquiring biometric data , in order to find out about their movements, migration routes, survival rates and metabolism...

     and rocket net
    Rocket net
    A rocket net is a kind of animal trap used to trap a large number of live animals, usually birds. It consists of an accordion folded rectangular net with one edge attached to the ground. The corners of the opposite edge at the top of the folded heap are attached to heavy tubes with one closed end....

    s
  • Persistence hunting
    Persistence hunting
    Persistence hunting is a hunting technique in which hunters use a combination of running and tracking to pursue prey to the point of exhaustion. While humans can sweat to reduce body heat their quadruped prey would need to slow from a gallop to pant. Today, it is very rare and seen only in a few...

    is the use of running and tracking to pursue the prey to exhaustion.
  • Scouting includes a variety of tasks and techniques for finding animals to hunt
  • Solunar theory
    Solunar theory
    The solunar theory is the theory that animals and fish move according to the location of the moon in comparison to their bodies. The theory was laid out in 1926 by John Alden Knight, but was said to be used by hunters and fishermen long before the time it was published.- History :In May 1926, John...

    says that animals move according to the location of the moon in comparison to their bodies, and is said to have been used long before this by hunters to know this times that are best to hunt their desired game
  • Spotlighting
    Spotlighting
    Spotlighting or Lamping is a method of hunting nocturnal animals using off-road vehicles and high-powered lights, spotlights, lamps or flashlights, that makes special use of the eyeshine revealed by many animal species. A further important aspect is that many animals Spotlighting or Lamping (also...

    or shining is the use of artificial light to find or blind animals before killing
  • Stalking
    Game stalker
    Defined narrowly, a game stalker is a hunter who for sport, approaches close to its timid quarry before making a kill. The practice is commonly associated with the moors of Scotland where the principal quarry is red deer. However, the skill is found worldwide and is of extremely long standing...

    or still hunting is the practice of walking quietly in search of animals, or in pursuit of an individual animal
  • Tracking
    Tracking (hunting)
    Tracking in hunting and ecology is the science and art of observing animal tracks and other signs, with the goal of gaining understanding of the landscape and the animal being tracked...

    is the practice of reading physical evidence in pursuing animals
  • Trapping is the use of devices such as snares, pit
    Trapping pit
    Trapping pits are deep pits dug into the ground, or built from stone, in order to trap animals.European rock drawings and cave paintings reveal that the elk and moose have been hunted since the stone age using trapping pits. In Northern Scandinavia one can still find remains of trapping pits used...

    s, deadfalls to capture or kill an animal

Trophy hunting

Trophy hunting is the selective seeking of wild game. It may also include the controversial hunting of captive or semi-captive animals expressly bred and raised under controlled or semi-controlled conditions so as to attain trophy characteristics; this is sometimes known as canned hunts.

History

In the 19th century, southern and central European sport hunters often pursued game only for a trophy
Trophy
A trophy is a reward for a specific achievement, and serves as recognition or evidence of merit. Trophies are most often awarded for sporting events, from youth sports to professional level athletics...

, usually the head or pelt
Fur
Fur is a synonym for hair, used more in reference to non-human animals, usually mammals; particularly those with extensives body hair coverage. The term is sometimes used to refer to the body hair of an animal as a complete coat, also known as the "pelage". Fur is also used to refer to animal...

 of an animal, which was then displayed as a sign of prowess. The rest of the animal was typically discarded. Some cultures, however, disapprove of such waste. In Nordic countries
Nordic countries
The Nordic countries make up a region in Northern Europe and the North Atlantic which consists of Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden and their associated territories, the Faroe Islands, Greenland and Åland...

, hunting for trophies was—and still is—frowned upon. Hunting in North America in the 19th century was done primarily as a way to supplement food supplies, although it is now undertaken mainly for sport. The safari method of hunting was a development of sport hunting that saw elaborate travel in Africa, India and other places in pursuit of trophies. In modern times trophy hunting
Trophy hunting
Trophy hunting is the selective hunting of wild game animals. Although parts of the slain animal may be kept as a hunting trophy or memorial , the carcass itself is sometimes used as food....

 persists, and is a significant industry in some areas.

Controversy

Trophy hunting is most often criticised when it involves rare or endangered animals. Opponents may also see trophy hunting as an issue of morality
Morality
Morality is the differentiation among intentions, decisions, and actions between those that are good and bad . A moral code is a system of morality and a moral is any one practice or teaching within a moral code...

 or animal cruelty
Cruelty to animals
Cruelty to animals, also called animal abuse or animal neglect, is the infliction of suffering or harm upon non-human animals, for purposes other than self-defense. More narrowly, it can be harm for specific gain, such as killing animals for food or for their fur, although opinions differ with...

, criticising the killing of living creatures for recreation
Recreation
Recreation is an activity of leisure, leisure being discretionary time. The "need to do something for recreation" is an essential element of human biology and psychology. Recreational activities are often done for enjoyment, amusement, or pleasure and are considered to be "fun"...

. Victorian era
Victorian era
The Victorian era of British history was the period of Queen Victoria's reign from 20 June 1837 until her death on 22 January 1901. It was a long period of peace, prosperity, refined sensibilities and national self-confidence...

 dramatist W. S. Gilbert
W. S. Gilbert
Sir William Schwenck Gilbert was an English dramatist, librettist, poet and illustrator best known for his fourteen comic operas produced in collaboration with the composer Sir Arthur Sullivan, of which the most famous include H.M.S...

 remarked, "Deer-stalking would be a very fine sport if only the deer had guns".

There is also debate about the extent to which trophy hunting benefits the local economy. Hunters argue that fees paid contribute to the local economy and provide value to animals that would otherwise be seen as competition for grazing, livestock, and crops. This analysis is disputed by opponents of trophy hunting. Some argue that the animals are worth more to the community for ecotourism
Ecotourism
Ecotourism is a form of tourism visiting fragile, pristine, and usually protected areas, intended as a low impact and often small scale alternative to standard commercial tourism...

 than hunting.

Economics

A variety of industries benefit from hunting and support hunting on economic grounds. In Tanzania
Tanzania
The United Republic of Tanzania is a country in East Africa bordered by Kenya and Uganda to the north, Rwanda, Burundi, and the Democratic Republic of the Congo to the west, and Zambia, Malawi, and Mozambique to the south. The country's eastern borders lie on the Indian Ocean.Tanzania is a state...

, it is estimated that a safari hunter spends fifty to one-hundred times that of the average ecotourist. While the average photo tourist may seek luxury accommodation, the average safari hunter generally stays in tented camps. Safari hunters are also more likely to use remote areas, uninviting to the typical ecotourist. Advocates argue that these hunters allow for anti-poaching activities and revenue for local communities.

In the United Kingdom, the game hunting of birds as an industry is said to be extremely important to the rural economy. The Cobham Report of 1997 suggested it to be worth around £700 million, and hunting and shooting lobby groups claimed it to be worth over a billion pounds less than ten years later.

Hunting also has a significant financial impact in the United States, with many companies specialising in hunting equipment
Sports equipment
Sports equipment is a general term for any object used for sport or exercise. Examples of sports equipment include:-Exercise equipment:Examples for exercise include swiss balls, weights, equipment for the gym...

 or speciality tourism. Today's hunters come from a broad range of economic, social, and cultural backgrounds. In 2001, over thirteen million hunters averaged eighteen days hunting, and spent over $20.5 billion on their sport. In the US proceeds from hunting licenses contribute to state game management programs, including preservation of wildlife habitat.

Conservation

Hunters have been driving forces throughout history in the movement to ensure long-term sustainability of natural resource
Natural resource
Natural resources occur naturally within environments that exist relatively undisturbed by mankind, in a natural form. A natural resource is often characterized by amounts of biodiversity and geodiversity existent in various ecosystems....

s and wildlife habitats
Habitat (ecology)
A habitat is an ecological or environmental area that is inhabited by a particular species of animal, plant or other type of organism...

. Hunters established game parks in Medieval Europe, such as the New Forest
New Forest
The New Forest is an area of southern England which includes the largest remaining tracts of unenclosed pasture land, heathland and forest in the heavily-populated south east of England. It covers south-west Hampshire and extends into south-east Wiltshire....

, with often violent punishments for poaching. In modern times, hunters have founded some of the most significant wildlife conservation organisations, such as Ducks Unlimited
Ducks Unlimited
Ducks Unlimited is an international non-profit organization dedicated to the conservation of wetlands and associated upland habitats for waterfowl, other wildlife, and people. It currently has approximately 780,000 members, mostly in the United States and Canada.-Introduction:Ducks Unlimited was...

. Hunters in industrialised nations generally comply with bag limits
Bag limits
A bag limit is a law imposed on hunters and fishermen restricting the number of animals within a specific species or group of species they may kill and keep. Size limits and hunting seasons sometimes accompany bag limits which place restrictions on the size of those animals and the time of year...

 to ensure the sustainability
Sustainability
Sustainability is the capacity to endure. For humans, sustainability is the long-term maintenance of well being, which has environmental, economic, and social dimensions, and encompasses the concept of union, an interdependent relationship and mutual responsible position with all living and non...

 of wildlife populations. Many contribute actively to preserving and protecting wildlife habitats internationally, knowing from experience that uncontrolled hunting can result in population crashes, such as in the US in the 19th century when common wild species that had been staple foods—most famously the passenger pigeon
Passenger Pigeon
The Passenger Pigeon or Wild Pigeon was a bird, now extinct, that existed in North America and lived in enormous migratory flocks until the early 20th century...

—were unexpectedly hunted to extinction
Extinction
In biology and ecology, extinction is the end of an organism or of a group of organisms , normally a species. The moment of extinction is generally considered to be the death of the last individual of the species, although the capacity to breed and recover may have been lost before this point...

.

Hunters have at times worked closely with local and federal governments to enact legislation to protect wildlife habitats. For example, the Ontario Federation of Anglers and Hunters
Ontario Federation of Anglers and Hunters
The Ontario Federation of Anglers and Hunters was established in 1928, and is Canada's leading conservation organization, as well as a non-profit registered charity. The Federation lobbies for the protection of wildlife and Canadian outdoor traditions...

 successfully lobbied to prevent cuts in funding for the Community Fisheries and Wildlife Involvement Program by fifty percent.

Pittman-Robertson Wildlife Restoration Act of 1937

In 1937, hunters successfully lobbied Congress to pass the Pittman-Robertson Wildlife Restoration Act, which placed an eleven percent tax on all hunting equipment. This self-imposed tax now generates over $700 million each year, and is used exclusively to establish, restore and protect wildlife habitats. The act is named for Nevada Senator Key Pittman
Key Pittman
Key Denson Pittman was a United States Senator from Nevada. He was a Democrat.Pittman was born in Vicksburg, Mississippi, in 1872 and was educated by private tutors and at the Southwestern Presbyterian University in Clarksville, Tennessee. He studied law, then later became a lawyer...

 and Virginia Congressman Absalom Willis Robertson
Absalom Willis Robertson
Absalom Willis Robertson was an American lawyer and Democratic Party politician from Lexington, Virginia. Also known as A. Willis Robertson, he represented Virginia in both the U.S...

.

Federal Duck Stamp program

On 16 March 1934 President Franklin D. Roosevelt
Franklin D. Roosevelt
Franklin Delano Roosevelt , also known by his initials, FDR, was the 32nd President of the United States and a central figure in world events during the mid-20th century, leading the United States during a time of worldwide economic crisis and world war...

 signed the Migratory Bird Hunting Stamp Act
Federal Duck Stamp
The federal duck stamp was created through a wetlands conservation program. President Herbert Hoover signed the Migratory Bird Conservation Act in 1929 to authorize the acquisition and preservation of wetlands as waterfowl habitat....

, which requires an annual stamp purchase by all hunters over the age of sixteen. The stamps are created on behalf of the program by the US Postal Service and depict wildlife artwork chosen through an annual contest. They play an important role in habitat conservation
Habitat conservation
Habitat conservation is a land management practice that seeks to conserve, protect and restore, habitat areas for wild plants and animals, especially conservation reliant species, and prevent their extinction, fragmentation or reduction in range...

 because ninety-eight percent of all funds generated by their sale go directly toward the purchase or lease of wetland
Wetland
A wetland is an area of land whose soil is saturated with water either permanently or seasonally. Wetlands are categorised by their characteristic vegetation, which is adapted to these unique soil conditions....

 habitat for protection in the National Wildlife Refuge System
National Wildlife Refuge
National Wildlife Refuge is a designation for certain protected areas of the United States managed by the United States Fish and Wildlife Service. The National Wildlife Refuge System is the world's premiere system of public lands and waters set aside to conserve America's fish, wildlife and plants...

. In addition to waterfowl, it is estimated that one third of the nation's endangered species seek food and shelter in areas protected using Duck Stamp
Federal Duck Stamp
The federal duck stamp was created through a wetlands conservation program. President Herbert Hoover signed the Migratory Bird Conservation Act in 1929 to authorize the acquisition and preservation of wetlands as waterfowl habitat....

 funds.

Since 1934, the sale of Federal Duck Stamps has generated $670 million, and helped to purchase or lease 5200000 acre (8,125 sq mi; 21,043.7 km²) of habitat. The stamps serve as a license to hunt migratory birds, an entrance pass for all National Wildlife Refuge areas, and are also considered collectors items often purchased for aesthetic reasons outside of the hunting and birding communities. Although non-hunters buy a significant number of Duck Stamps, eighty-seven percent of their sales are contributed by hunters. Distribution of funds is managed by the Migratory Bird Conservation Commission (MBCC).

Conservation organisations

There are a number of organisations founded by hunters and by those interested in preserving wildlife populations and habitats. One of the oldest and most well-known organisations is Ducks Unlimited. Another internationally recognised hunters' conservation organisation is Safari Club International
Safari Club International
Safari Club International is an international organization composed of hunters. SCI has more than 50,000 members and 180 local chapters. SCI's website displays the bannertext "Safari Club International is the Leader in Protecting the Freedom to Hunt and Promoting Wildlife Conservation...

.

See also

  • Animal Conservation
  • Animal rights
    Animal rights
    Animal rights, also known as animal liberation, is the idea that the most basic interests of non-human animals should be afforded the same consideration as the similar interests of human beings...

  • Anti-Hunting
    Anti-hunting
    Anti-hunting is a term which is used to identify or describe persons or groups, generally in a political context, who stand in opposition to hunting. It is also used to describe efforts to prevent hunting through legislation and other means which can include acts of civil disobedience such as hunt...

  • Bambi effect
    Bambi Effect
    "The Bambi effect" is a term used anecdotally or in editorial media that refers to objections against the killing of animals that are perceived as "cute" or "adorable", such as deer or dolphins, while there may be little or no objection to the suffering of organisms that are perceived as somehow...

  • Big-game hunter
  • Blood sport
    Blood sport
    Bloodsport or blood sport is any sport or entertainment that involves violence against animals.Bloodsport includes coursing or beagling, combat sports such as cockfighting and dog fighting, or other activities...

  • Bowhunting
    Bowhunting
    Bowhunting is the practice of killing game animals by archery. It has been a normal use of archery in every culture that had bows.- Technique :...

  • Bushfood
    Bushfood
    Bushfood traditionally relates to any food native to Australia and used as sustenance by the original inhabitants, the Australian Aborigines, but it is a reference to any native fauna/flora that is used for culinary and/or medicinal purposes regardless of which continent or culture it originates...

  • Bushmeat
    Bushmeat
    Bushmeat initially referred to the hunting of wild animals in West and Central Africa and is a calque from the French viande de brousse. Today the term is commonly used for meat of terrestrial wild animals, killed for subsistence or commercial purposes throughout the humid tropics of the Americas,...

  • Chase
    Chase (land)
    In the United Kingdom a chase is a type of common land used for hunting to which there are no specifically designated officers and laws, but there are reserved hunting rights for one or more persons. Similarly, a Royal Chase is a type of Crown Estate by the same description, but where certain...

  • Eyeshine
    Tapetum lucidum
    The tapetum lucidum is a layer of tissue in the eye of many vertebrate animals....

  • Falconry
    Falconry
    Falconry is "the taking of wild quarry in its natural state and habitat by means of a trained raptor". There are two traditional terms used to describe a person involved in falconry: a falconer flies a falcon; an austringer flies a hawk or an eagle...

  • Federation of Associations for Hunting and Conservation of the EU
    Federation of Associations for Hunting and Conservation of the EU
    Federation of Associations for Hunting and Conservation of the EU is an advocacy group for hunters and for wildlife conservation and sustainable management in 36 European countries. It monitors legislation and developments that could affect the interests of its members...

  • Human hunting
    Human hunting
    Human hunting is a quasi-urban legend, where certain people hunt and kill humans for the purpose of pleasure, entertainment, or sustenance. Serial killer Robert Hansen would abduct and hunt his victims before killing them. The Beltway sniper attacks hunted their victims at gas stations and stores...

  • Hunt Saboteurs Association (HSA)
    Hunt Saboteurs Association
    The Hunt Saboteurs Association is a worldwide organization using direct action to stop the hunting of animals. HSA activists use a model of leaderless resistance and have been using the same basic tactics since their inception in 1963; the underlying principle being to directly intervene in a...

  • Hunting horn
  • Hunting season
    Hunting season
    A hunting season is the time when it is legal to hunt and kill a particular species.In the United States, each state has primary responsibility and authority over the hunting of wildlife that resides within state boundaries. State wildlife agencies that sell hunting licenses are the best source of...

  • National Rifle Association
    National Rifle Association
    The National Rifle Association of America is an American non-profit 501 civil rights organization which advocates for the protection of the Second Amendment of the United States Bill of Rights and the promotion of firearm ownership rights as well as marksmanship, firearm safety, and the protection...

  • Nimrod
    Nimrod
    Nimrod means "Hunter"; was a Biblical Mesopotamian king mentioned in the Table of Nations; an eponym for the city of Nimrud.Nimrod can also refer to any of the following:*Nimród Antal, a director...

  • Safari Club International
    Safari Club International
    Safari Club International is an international organization composed of hunters. SCI has more than 50,000 members and 180 local chapters. SCI's website displays the bannertext "Safari Club International is the Leader in Protecting the Freedom to Hunt and Promoting Wildlife Conservation...

  • Sir Gawain and the Green Knight
  • The Sound of His Horn
    The Sound of His Horn
    The Sound of His Horn is a 1952 dystopian time travel/alternate history novel by the senior British diplomat John William Wall, written with the pseudonym Sarban. It relates the story of a British naval lieutenant, Alan Querdillon who, after becoming a POW during the Battle of Crete awakens in a...



Further reading

  • Dickson D. Bruce, Jr., Mississippi Quarterly (Spring 1977).
  • Kenneth S. Greenberg, Honor and Slavery: Lies, Duels, Noses, Masks, Dressing as a Woman, Gifts, Strangers, Humanitarianism, Death, Slave Rebellions, the Pro-Slavery Argument, Baseball, Hunting, and Gambling in the Old South (1996).
  • Steven Hahn, Radical History Review (1982).
  • Charles H. Hudson, Jr., in Indians, Animals, and the Fur Trade, ed., Shephard Krech III (1981).
  • Stuart A. Marks, Southern Hunting in Black and White: Nature, History, and Ritual in a Carolina Community (1991).
  • Ted Ownby, Subduing Satan: Religion, Recreation, and Manhood in the Rural South, 1865–1920 (1990).
  • Wiley C. Prewitt, “The Best of All Breathing: Hunting and Environmental Change in Mississippi, 1900–1980” M.A. thesis, (1991).
  • Nicolas W. Proctor, Bathed in Blood: Hunting and Mastery in the Old South (2002).
  • Jacob F. Rivers III, Cultural Values in the Southern Sporting Narrative (2002).
  • Salem, D.J., and A.N. Rowan, eds. 2003. The State of the Animals II: 2003. Washington, D.C.: Humane Society Press. (ISBN 0-9658942-7-4)
  • Timothy Silver, A New Face on the Countryside: Indians, Colonists, and Slaves in South Atlantic Forests, 1500–1800 (1990).
  • Richard C. Stedman and Thomas A. Heberlein, Rural Sociology (2001).
  • Nancy L. Struna, People of Prowess: Sport, Leisure, and Labor in Early Anglo-America (1996).
  • Marek Żukow-Karczewski, Polowania w dawnej Polsce (Hunting in the old Poland), "AURA" (A Monthly for the protection and shaping of human environment) 12/90.
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