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Hunting Safety Tips

When hunting, put safety in your sights

deer hunting safety tips image

Before you head outdoors on your next nature adventure, know what types of hunters or trappers you may encounter. Both hunters and non-hunters who live near hunting land have a responsibility to protect themselves, their pets, their livestock and their property.

Hunter safety steps

Many states require new hunters to complete a hunter-safety course. These courses provide important information about proper safety precautions.

Additionally, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) suggests the following tips.

  • Wear blaze orange or another highly visible color. If you take a dog with you, make sure it also wears bright colors.

  • Tell someone where you will be hunting and when you will return.

  • Be familiar with the area you want to hunt.

  • Check hunting equipment before and after each outing and maintain it properly.

  • Carry a first aid kit.

  • Clearly identify your target before shooting.

Safety tips for non-hunters

  • Wear bright clothing to make yourself more visible. Avoid animal-colored clothing. Protect pets with bright-colored clothing.

  • Make noise. Whistle, sing or carry on a conversation as you walk to alert hunters to your presence.

  • If you hear shooting, yell to alert hunters that you are in the area.

Protect your livestock

Even landowners who never pull a trigger or set traps must take precautions to protect their land and animals during hunting season.

Because pets and livestock are sometimes mistaken for deer or get caught in traps, it’s wise to lock up animals that usually have free reign of your land. Many farmers spray paint an "X" on the flanks of grazing livestock to help avoid confusion. Pen livestock near farm buildings to further distinguish them from deer, and check your animals and gates daily.

Protect your property

Property owners should be aware that when they allow hunters on their land they expose themselves to accidental losses, liability and potential litigation.

If you don't want hunters on your property, post signs around the perimeter of your property that read "No Trespassing" or "No Hunting." If you do permit access, require the hunters to check-in each time they enter your property, and get the names of each person in the hunting party.

Additional hunting safety resources

For more information about hunting safety, visit this site:

  • Hunter-ed – Safety courses and handbooks for each state.


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