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Editor's Note: Lily Raff McCaulou is an award-winning journalist, Knight-Wallace Fellowship recipient and a columnist for The Bulletin in Bend, Oregon. Her first book, "Call of the Mild: Learning to Hunt My Own Dinner" was published in June.
Growing up, I didn’t know anyone who hunted. Hunters, I figured, were probably just barbaric gun nuts. Then, eight years ago, I moved from Manhattan to rural Oregon, to write for a small newspaper. My perspective shifted when I began interviewing hunters for my articles and realized that although I had long considered myself an environmentalist, these hunters – most of whom scoffed at the “E” word – were more knowledgeable and thoughtful about animals and nature than I was.
Eventually, I decided to buy a gun and join them. But don’t worry, I’m still an environmentalist, loud and proud.
Five Reasons Why Hunting a Wild Animal Makes an Ethical Dinner: Lily Raff McCaulou
1. Hunting has a light environmental footprint
2. Wild animals aren’t subject to the misery of factory farming
3. None of the meat is wasted
4. Hunting pays for conservation
With approximately 12.5 million hunters nationwide, we’re talking about real money. Proceeds from the Federal Duck Stamp – a required $15 annual purchase for migratory waterfowl hunters – have added more than five million acres to the national wildlife refuge system. And federal excise taxes on hunting equipment and ammunition garner more than $200 million a year for wildlife management and the purchase of public lands.
5. Hunting promotes conservation
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