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    To Travel or Not to Travel: The Bow Hunter’s Question

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    Well everyone, spring is in the air. The flowers are in bloom, grass is starting to slowly turn green, the air is heavily scented with lilacs and apple blossoms and all of that means one thing here at Pro-Tracker: it’s time to go hunt us some delicious turkeys. Normally this is an exciting time of the year, but this year will be especially awesome because we get to take a few bowhunting newbies with us. To us, there is nothing more fun that teaching what we know to someone new and watching the excitement of their first hunt, be it turkey or otherwise, bloom across their face. We’ve been going over various trip possibilities, but one we kept coming back to was the idea of hunting out of state. We know many hunters that have licenses and tags in multiple states, and it seems as the years go by the numbers of inter-state hunting are rapidly increasing; as it well should. For those of you who haven’t gone to hunt in a different state, you should most definitely give it a try.

    Pros of Hunting Out of State

    There are several pros to hunting out of state. One of the largest pros (in our humble opinion) is the ability to take advantage of the different states hunting seasons. By hunting in different states, we’ve been able to elongate our hunting season by at minimum one month and at most three; depending on the type of animal we are looking for. A perfect example of this is turkey season. Here in Idaho, turkey season begins in mid-April, however if we decided to get a permit in say Florida the season would have already been underway in March.

    Another reason we love to hunt in different states is we love to see the variations in scenery and also partake in the challenge of hunting in the different terrain. Not only does the ability of tracking and hunting in a variety of terrains and locations make you a overall a more well rounded hunter, the challenges you will face in different areas will make the hunt that much more exciting; and your prize that much more worthwhile when you catch it. In addition to the increased knowledge travel can give you, the different terrains and plants also mean a larger variety in your animals. Since an animal’s taste is largely influenced by its diet, but widening the areas in which you hunt you are opening your palette to some new (sometimes amazing, sometimes gamey) flavors.

    Cons of Hunting Out of State

    Now, looking at those pros, we’re sure many of you are thinking, “Well heck yeah, that sounds awesome! So, why don’t more people do it?” The answer is as many things, both simple and complicated, all at the same time. The main reason people opt to not travel across state lines to hunt is the inherent cost. While we love hunting in different states, it can get to be a pretty pricey experience. Not only do you need to cover travel costs, you also have to take into account the cost of whatever tag you have a desire to hunt. In some states, the prices for those are very reasonable for out of state hunters, but in many states being a hunter from out of state is going to make your wallet flinch. The second issue is the availability of tags for out of staters in the state you desire to hunt in. With some animals (like turkey) getting an out of state tag is generally pretty easy; however with other animals (like bear) getting a tag for an out of state person is a difficult process.

    Looking at both the pros and cons, we are firmly in the camp of traveling to hunt when we can. Not only does the traveling help cure us all of our insatiable wanderlust, but it acts as a mini-vacation as well. There is something about hunting away from home that is instantly soothing and allows us to let all of the stress just ease away that we adore. We don’t always get to hunt out of state, as with all things in life sometimes we can’t afford to go, but when we can we jump at the chance. Fortunately, it seems that many of you bowhunters are agreeing with us. In recent years more and more bowhunters are beginning to cross state lines and taking the opportunity to test their skills across the country. We, for one, couldn’t be more excited. Just don’t forget to bring your Pro-Tracker along with you; sometimes those new environments can throw you for a loop and we want to be with you to help make sure you don’t lose your quarry.

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TRANSMITTERS & CARRIERS

Transmitter

The Pro-Tracker® Transmitter is a rechargeable, lightweight, water resistant transmitter that disengages from the arrow upon impact; allowing for pass-throughs. The transmitter hooks into the animal’s hide and begins sending Radio Frequency (RF) signals every three seconds for the duration of the battery life (10-12 hours). You will need the Pro-Tracker® Receiver to read and track the signal.

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Carrier

The Carrier is what screws into your arrow and holds the transmitter. It is aerodynamically designed to compensate for the weight and shape of the transmitter. Meaning minimal adjustments to your equipment for the same precision. This item comes in a pack of four.

 
 

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RADIO FREQUENCY RECEIVER

ReceiverYAGI Antenna

The Pro-Tracker® Radio Frequency (RF) Receiver is a compact system with an easy to attach antenna. This state of the art receiver can track up to 6 different transmitter signals at the same time. Displaying signal strength, transmitter number, current time, time spent tracking, and current battery life, all on a easy to read LED screen. Available only in the Pro-Tracker© System

VIEW SYSTEM

DUAL CHARGER & CARRYING CASE

Carrying Case

The Pro-Tracker® custom metal carrying case helps you keep track of your Pro-Tracker system and ensures everything stays together. Its lightweight and durable design ensures your equipment is protected while being as easy as possible to carry during your hunting trip and recovering your trophy.

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Carrier

This dual-charging station allows you to charge up to two transmitters at a time. It includes both a USB and outlet adapter. The outlet adapter allows you to charge your transmitters at home while the USB adapters allow you to charge your transmiters in your truck for extended hunting trips.

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STATE-OF-THE-ART TECHNOLOGY

The patented Pro-Tracker® Recovery System will help you locate your kill with durable, state of the art technology. The compact system can track 6 different transmitters while using the same RF receiver with an easy to read LED screen. Best of all, our transmitters don’t require the purchase of batteries and can be recharged both at home and out in the field.

 

UNRIVALED PERFORMANCE

The Pro-Tracker® System has been field tested by top experts in the archery industry. With the Pro-Tracker® Archery System you’ll see virtually no difference in the trajectory of your arrow because of the aerodynamic carrier. Tests have shown the Pro-Tracker® Recovery System will give you many hours of use and the precision to recovery your trophy.

 

ETHICS

deer hunt
As a bow hunter, we appreciate the skill required to take an animal. We enjoy the smell of fresh air and the morning chill that seeps into your bones as you sit quietly and wait for an animal to wander into view. We understand the importance of a steady hand and careful aim; there is no feeling better than letting that arrow fly and hitting your mark. As bow hunters, we also understand the frustration when your perfectly aimed shot seems to go awry (i.e. hitting a branch or an unexpected object). If you miss, you go find your arrow and try again. If you wound your animal you can spend hours or days tracking the blood trail, hoping the weather holds until you find your kill. The sad fact though, is that while many times you will find your quarry, there are just as many times that an animal is unrecovered.
Looking back, you will find studies related to deer loss rates in bow hunting dating back to 1989. When the studies first began, the amount of animals wounded and lost is astounding, but as bow hunting equipment has improved, the number of animal losses has decreased substantially. Unfortunately, even with these decreases, the ratio of unrecovered animals is still causing concern within the bow hunting community and general public. We wanted to look deeper into deer loss rates, and focused on information obtained in two of the better known studies done by Stephen S. Ditchkoff et al and M. Andy Pedersen at al. One study found that of 104 bow hunters, there was an 18% wounding rate. Within a normal hunting season these hunters hit a total of 908 white tail deer, recovering only 746 (Pedersen et al 2008). In another study, it was determined that there was a 50% wounding rate and of that number 14% weren’t recovered. Of these deer 4% died annually from these wounds, while the rest survived (Ditchkoff et al. 1998).

pro-tracker bow huntIn the reports, we found that while many of the deer either die (Ditchkoff) or are recovered within 24 hours (Pedersen), that some can survive 5-7 days with wounds before they perish. When looking at these numbers and percentages for any individual state, the number of animals that are not recovered seems miniscule. However once you look at the entire population of bow hunters within the United States alone, the amount becomes much more significant (Ditchkoff). This more significant number of unrecovered animals has been causing animal rights and anti-hunting activists to state that bow hunting is both cruel and inhumane. It is because of this that the Pro-Tracker was invented. Our goal is to eliminate the possibility of losing even one animal while maintaining the integrity of the hunt. Pro-Tracker has been in use since 2010 and thus far we have a 100% accuracy rate in animal recovery. The Pro-Tracker system, while not ideal for every hunter, is thus far supporting the goal of striving to ensure bow hunting is appreciated for the skill it requires and given the support it deserves, rather than seen in a negative light. With technology and advancement in the archery industry, we can help in recovering the animals wounded and work to improve the loss rate. We all have a responsibility to the natural resources we are given; no one is perfect every time. Accidents do happen, and we need to be prepared for those occasions.

Literature Cited:
1. Ditchkoff, Stephen S., Edgar R. Welch Jr., Robert L. Lochmiller, Ronald E. Masters, William R. Starry, William C. Dinkines. 1998. Wounding of White-tailed Deer with Traditional Archery Equipment. Proc. Annu. Conf. Southeast. Assoc. Fish and Wildl. Agencies 52:244-248. Website: https://www.researchgate.net/profile/Ronald_Masters/publication/237609363_Wounding_Rates_of_Whitetailed_Deer_

with_Traditional_Archery_Equipment/links/54c63cdf0cf256ed5a9d4dfe.pdf
2. Pedersen, Andy M., Seth Berry, Jeffrey C. Bossart. 2008. Wounding Rates of White –tailed Deer with Modern Archery Equipment. Proc. Annu. Conf. Southeast. Assoc. Fish and Wildl. Agencies 62:31–34
Website: http://www.marylandqdma.com/files/Download/Pedersen-31-34.pdf