Is It Sporting?

A Reader Poses a Question

Reader, Bill Tidwell sent us this e-mail. What do you think?

On opening day of the spring turkey season, my son and I were hunting the Bear Creek area of New Hogan Lake. On the top of one hill, you could hear a turkey gobbling where I, and at least one other group of hunters, had roosted him the night before. At approximately 5:26 a.m. by my watch, we heard a shotgun blast and then someone yelled "You shot him out of the roost!" About a minute later, the same voice yelled "Yeah, you better run."

If my watch was correct, I believe this "sport hunter" (and I use the term loosely) shot five minutes before legal hunting time. Even if it was legal, there was not enough light to determine if the bird had a visible beard as required by the Fish and Game code. Whether it was legal or not, I definitely believe that it was unethical and not within the rules of "fair chase."

I know of at least eight other hunters, including a father and his two children, that were denied a chance at harvesting this wild turkey because of the action of this one selfish hunter.

I do not necessarily believe that we need more game laws. However, this situation brings up the question, "To help eliminate unethical hunting, should the shooting of roosting wild turkey be declared illegal?"

You may want to open that question for discussion among your readers.

So, what do you think? Send us your comments:

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