You wake up at 4am, it is pitch black outside as you put on your gear and head out to the woods on this crisp 37-degree November morning. The excitement is high, and adrenaline is rolling. As you climb into your blind, you are sharp and daydreaming the multiple ways you’re going to score your first 8-point of the season. Hot coffee in hand, you settle in, rest your rifle, and listen for your prize. Will today be the day?
Hunting season is very special to hundreds of thousands of people across Michigan. For many, a deer means feeding friends and family through the winter. Hunting also helps to fund a large portion of wildlife conservation, which supports more than 135,000 jobs in the state.
While hunting certainly is a contributing factor to Michigan’s economy, hunters are still injured and sometimes killed as a result of preventable accidents. In order to purchase a hunting license in Michigan, hunters are required to successfully complete an approved hunter education course. Take it online here: https://www.hunter-ed.com/michigan/.
Whether you are in your rookie hunting season or are an experienced veteran hunter, here are a few safety tips to get you and other hunters through the season safely:
- Have a check-in contact. Let someone know when and where you will be, in the event of an emergency, and schedule check-in times.
- Wear blaze orange clothing so you are always visible to other hunters. Hunter orange garments must be at least 50% hunter orange to meet the legal requirements.
- Treat each firearm as if it were loaded, and always point the muzzle in a safe direction.
- Be aware of your surroundings – know your target and what is beyond it.
- Keep your finger outside of the trigger guard and away from the trigger until you’re ready to shoot.
- Do not use alcohol or use mind-altering substances when hunting – including medications.
To find more information about hunting, visit your local DNR website.
Good luck this season!