Sunday, September 07, 2008

More Women in British Columbia owning guns

© By Othmar Vohringer

“Annie Get Your Gun” has become an appropriate theme for British Columbia women. According to a recently published article in the “Times Colonist” gun sales have gone up throughout the province of British Columbia. Gun storeowners say that firearm sales to women have drastically increased. One of the reasons for this new surge may have to do with the provinces recent hunter recruitment program directed specifically at women and children.

Gun clubs throughout the province and the B.C. Wildlife Federation were quick to respond to the hunter recruitment program by introducing special family and women in the outdoors programs. It is in part because of these and similar programs, targeted specifically at women and children, that the access for women to hunting and the shooting sport has become easier. In addition hunting clubs began to offer family shooting programs and introduced family memberships. Such benefits make it financially lees straining, especially for families with young children.

Over the course of the last two years I have seen the number of women on shooting ranges rise sharply. Not so long ago a women or an entire family was rare site at a firearm range. Not anymore, it is quite common now to see couples and families enjoying the shooting sport together. Even in the field the presence of women is noticed. Each year I seem to encounter more women or couples dressed in camouflage hunting as a team. Here in British Columbia hunting and the shooting sport have truly become a family activity and I couldn’t be more pleased about the current trend.

As hunter education instructor and dedicated in the recruitment of new and young hunters I welcome the BC governments move to make hunting more accessible for beginners by waiving the mandatory hunter education course for the first year. I always believed that the mandatory hunter education course is one of the biggest obstacles in the recruitment of new hunters. With the new law young and new hunters are permitted to purchase a hunting license and go hunting with a veteran hunter in procession of the mandatory hunter number. This gives new and young hunters the opportunity to try hunting out for one year and if they like it they can enroll in the mandatory hunter education course to obtain their own hunter number and can purchase their own hunting license.

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SimplyOutdoors said...

I think it is great that more of the ladies are owning guns. There is absolutely nothing wrong with that.

I know that shooting sports are definite a family affair in my family. My dad, uncles, brother, sisters, and everyone get in on the act.

I love it, and I am going to make it a point to get my soon to arrive daughter in the mix as soon as I can as well.

It's a great trend that I am glad to see happening.

Othmar Vohringer said...

I agree on all points with you Arthur. The more the better, is what I say.

Anonymous said...

I think, as more states and provinces encourage women to hunt, more women are feeling inclined to do so. You can now take women only shooting classes if you want to do so. We are also seeing an increase in female role models for women hunters. I think all that stuff adds up.

Anonymous said...

I think it is great also that more women are getting involved in hunting. They have the same rights as we do so why not.

Hunting is not just a man sport it is a family sport in my opinion.

Bonneville Mariner said...

I never realized just how many women hunting enthusiasts were out there until I made that request for help with my hunting article a couple weeks ago. The response from lady hunters was incredible. I started reading those blogs and was pleased to discover hunting's inclusive nature.

On another note, I wonder if the addition of Sarah Palin to the GOP presidential ticket might inspire more American women consider guns and hunting.

Othmar Vohringer said...

Thanks everybody for your comments and opinions. I am glad to see that more women hunters are joining us and are by large readily accepted in a once male dominated field.

In answer to Bonneville Mariner I don’t think that Sarah Palin recent push from oblivion to the center ring of the media circus had an influence yet on more women joining our ranks or become sport shooters. This is a trend that started quite a few years ago but is really noticeable this year here in Canada. At least here in Canada I think it the direct result of the Harper government and his stance on pro gun, pro outdoors activity that has made a difference.

It is quite possible that Palin perhaps in the future will have an influence on women and guns, provided she and Mc Cain can win the elections, which still is very much up in the air.


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