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You often hear people say things like "humans are natural born hunters, predators at birth". Yet we hear also that we must take our kids out hunting early to insure they become hunters. That they follow in our footsteps and become hunters for life.
Maybe we are not born hunters, maybe we are as the "anti's" say just teaching are children this. Maybe it's like other very enjoyable activities...you name them...that once experienced and especially experienced at a young impressionable age we continue seeking this enjoyment for a lifetime.
Abandon on a island at birth with a plentiful food supply, would we naturally start hunting? Are we just perpetuating an addiction? People that have never used a drug do not crave it. Is hunting just another "high" that our brain craves?
At the most base level, why do we hunt?
 

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You often hear people say things like "humans are natural born hunters, predators at birth". Yet we hear also that we must take our kids out hunting early to insure they become hunters. That they follow in our footsteps and become hunters for life.
Maybe we are not born hunters, maybe we are as the "anti's" say just teaching are children this. Maybe it's like other very enjoyable activities...you name them...that once experienced and especially experienced at a young impressionable age we continue seeking this enjoyment for a lifetime.
Abandon on a island at birth with a plentiful food supply, would we naturally start hunting? Are we just perpetuating an addiction? People that have never used a drug do not crave it. Is hunting just another "high" that our brain craves?
At the most base level, why do we hunt?
At the most basic, primitive level... I believe we are hunters. Why do we take kids out? Because now that primitive instinct goes dormant to fast food and grocery delivery services, video games, and political BS.

At the core, if you drop someone off in a remote location with nothing at all.... I believe in most cases the instinct to hunt will kick in. That or they will die of starvation because they tried to survive off plants alone, or they get killed by an animal. This is what I would argue to the island with food... you have to be somewhere on the food chain. I think that most core hunters were trying not to be killed, they just realized red meat tastes better than plants and gives you energy and muscle easier. One major argument against it is that we don't need to have this instinct anymore... bunch of privileged spoiled people we have become. The logic ends if you follow that thought process very far.
 

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I think it is learned. It is not necessary for survival, and hasn't been in this country since our ancestors started plowing fields and raising chickens/cows/pigs. Hunting today is a hobby. Plain and simple. It is a hobby. For some, that hobby transcends into a lifestyle, but it is still a hobby. And like anything, it is a learned hobby. Many may learn it from their father, grandfather, uncle, or the guy up the street that takes a kid out. But it is learned.

My Dad hunted. Growing up, I couldn't wait to go, because I loved time with my Dad. My older brother didn't enjoy hunting, and he chose not to go. I took to it, and so I got to spend time with my Dad. And he kept hunting, because it was good father/son time. As I took to other interests - like scouting and sports - My Dad supported me with those, and would volunteer to lead or coach. Dad loved to fish more than hunt - so I learned to fish - again - for the time together.

So I guess in my view, we are more naturally inclined as children, to desire time with our parents, and vice versa. (unless parents are abusive @$$holes). But if Dad/Mom hunt, then kid will hunt. If Dad/Mom fish, then kid will fish. And if kid decides they'd rather play soccer, basketball, football, or become a fashion designer, I'd hope that as parents we'd support our kids in their pursuits as well. I think that where we are at this point, any innate birthright towards hunting is far lower on the list of influence than the desire for quality parent time.
 

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I believe there is something engrained in us. Just hand an 8 year old a BB gun. He will come back 30 minutes later with a dead bird. Natural selection would have favored those that were good at it, and we are usually good at things we enjoy doing. With that logic I believe there is something instinctive about wanting to hunt. Most people that have pulled the trigger on an animal and felt the resulting adrenalin/endorphin response coupled with the sense of relief and reverence when walking up on a pile of meat would agree. Our current lifestyle in modern America does not justify those type of responses. We are not starving to death. Our families will not starve if we fail, but we still have the physiological responses as if our lives depended on it. That has to come from somewhere deep down. We have canine teeth, forward facing vision, and we eat meat. Every other species I know of that fits those characteristics does not pass up opportunities to secure meat when given the opportunity.

With that said, it is also a skill. Bears, mountain lions, and coyotes all teach their young how to hunt. If they don't, the young starve to death. Our young, when not taught to hunt still get chicken nuggets and are just fine. Some people get the hunting bug, and some don't, even within the same family, but there is little or no evolutionary advantage to it anymore. Maybe its a vestigial gene. Either way, I hope there is always a place in our society for it.
 

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GaryFish - BP:

There is no way it is a learned behavior; only additional skills are learned as with any instinctive behavior such as with a mother suckling her newborn as the new born searches for the food; and the mother makes minor adjustments till the offspring learns how to nurse; and how to push away the other siblings.

It is definitely instinctive, deeply bedded in our DNA and our wiring. You cannot turn off hundreds of thousands of years of chemical wiring. It is deeply instinctive. Eating, drinking, reproduction etc... and hunting. And they are all related...

The arguments as to why we go or went hunting such as "...to be with my dad" or "..because I went as a kid" etc. etc.. etc... are aspects of the hunt just as it is to provide support and sustenance to clan, tribe or family. How can you describe that feeling of a successful hunt and vehicle full of game?? It is deep and fulfilling for the village is sustained yet again.

Here is the thing. The instinct being primordial needs an awakening; and once alive it is overpowering. Only the additional skills are learned and in learning the skills more of the instinct comes alive and becomes more intense. And yes there are some that try to learn but the instinct is just not there. We have seen this; however is the exception that proves the rule.

Most of you have likely had the experience of knowing game is in the area or you are about to get a shot....ahhhh there it is. The instinct alive. When I am hunting with good hunting partners, we call it "....getting birdy...". Just recently I said to my lady friend while driving, "There is a deer!" But I was looking to my right at her as we were talking, and the deer was over my left shoulder outside my peripheral. She said that freaked her out a bit and the hair was standing up on the back of her neck, "How did you know? You were looking at me?" I said thats OK; it only seems freaky the first few times.

Some people just do not have the instinct and have not the interest nor the aptitude in learning. The great paradox is that others proclaim they are anti-hunters and yet their primordial instincts are awake and alive only they ARE hunting - us.

No, it is instinctive to one degree or another; and say what you will, hunting IS necessary for survival; the exercise, the change of scenery, the camaraderie, the challenge, the learning, realism of participating in nature, being true to ones' inner self and the need for natures original health food (I have not bought meat the store for several decades).
 

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GaryFish - BP:

There is no way it is a learned behavior; only additional skills are learned as with any instinctive behavior such as with a mother suckling her newborn as the new born searches for the food; and the mother makes minor adjustments till the offspring learns how to nurse; and how to push away the other siblings.

It is definitely instinctive, deeply bedded in our DNA and our wiring. You cannot turn off hundreds of thousands of years of chemical wiring. It is deeply instinctive. Eating, drinking, reproduction etc... and hunting. And they are all related...

The arguments as to why we go or went hunting such as "...to be with my dad" or "..because I went as a kid" etc. etc.. etc... are aspects of the hunt just as it is to provide support and sustenance to clan, tribe or family. How can you describe that feeling of a successful hunt and vehicle full of game?? It is deep and fulfilling for the village is sustained yet again.

Here is the thing. The instinct being primordial needs an awakening; and once alive it is overpowering. Only the additional skills are learned and in learning the skills more of the instinct comes alive and becomes more intense. And yes there are some that try to learn but the instinct is just not there. We have seen this; however is the exception that proves the rule.

Most of you have likely had the experience of knowing game is in the area or you are about to get a shot....ahhhh there it is. The instinct alive. When I am hunting with good hunting partners, we call it "....getting birdy...". Just recently I said to my lady friend while driving, "There is a deer!" But I was looking to my right at her as we were talking, and the deer was over my left shoulder outside my peripheral. She said that freaked her out a bit and the hair was standing up on the back of her neck, "How did you know? You were looking at me?" I said thats OK; it only seems freaky the first few times.

Some people just do not have the instinct and have not the interest nor the aptitude in learning. The great paradox is that others proclaim they are anti-hunters and yet their primordial instincts are awake and alive only they ARE hunting - us.

No, it is instinctive to one degree or another; and say what you will, hunting IS necessary for survival; the exercise, the change of scenery, the camaraderie, the challenge, the learning, realism of participating in nature, being true to ones' inner self and the need for natures original health food (I have not bought meat the store for several decades).
+1 some of this went over my head (this is deep) but definitely agree with this take in general.
 
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