You may question why a special day is set aside to acknowledge Alberta’s hunting community. To me the answer is pretty straightforward. The role hunters have played and continue to play in working towards habitat conservation and wild game management should not be ignored. For the last several years the province has made a point to recognize these contributions, through the proclamation of Provincial Hunting Day.
I think an argument can be made that hunting was a much bigger part of the way of life leading up to the 20th century, for many, it was the only way to ensure they could feed their families on a day-to-day basis.
Today, It would seem hunting would be classified as a recreation activity, while some native groups still rely on a substance hunt most of us participate for many other reasons apart for the requirement of having to feed our families. While the “have to” may not be as relevant today, hunting in the modern age still carries with it plenty of significance for those of us who lace up the boots and hike out into the woods every fall.
In today's modern society, it seems people are much further removed from the source of the food on their table, and many are completely detached from the reality of where their protein comes from. A trip to the local grocery store and a walk through the meat section is as close many of us get to appreciate where our food comes from, now I’m not suggesting to enjoy the bread you eat that you should have a grain farm in the backyard. Growing and harvesting this kind of food doesn’t carry with it the sometimes-visceral reaction you get from folks who simply don’t or won’t understand hunting.
Hunting today provides individuals an opportunity to be in control of the food they eat and to determine how that food will be harvested. The wild game provides a protein source that meets all the advertising claims made by modern processed foods: wild game is low in fat, high in protein, no added hormones, no antibiotics, free range, sustainably harvested, and best of all, great tasting. And when you also take into account the amount of work that goes into field dressing and packing out an animal the connection you have to your next wild game meal takes on special significance.
Add to this the fact that hunting offers a great opportunity for family and friends to participate in an outdoors activity, and there is no reason why everybody shouldn't be looking for an opportunity to try hunting this fall.
To better understand why we have a Provincial Hunting Day I went to the president of the Alberta Fish and Game Association Wayne Lowry. Here is my interview.
Podcast Interview with Wayne Lowry
- Need some ideas for cooking wild game, check out some of Brad Fenson’s recipes
- Also check out my Dutch oven cooking video, as I cook up a moose and venison stew.
- For information on the Youth Hunting Initiative click here.