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Two hunters use their GPS.

Hunting can be a great experience to share with friends and companions. There are four key ways to maintain friendships on a hunt.

  • Shared Values: Hunting companions must respect wildlife, landowner relations, game regulations, and other considerations. If your hunting companions do not share your respect for hunting, you would be wise to choose other partners.
  • Dependability: Hunting companions must be able to depend on one another and trust each other’s word. Agreements are important on such things as the time to meet for the hunt, the time to stop hunting, and what hunting areas are assigned to each hunter.
  • Courtesy: Be considerate and thoughtful of others. Avoid wandering around the hunting areas and walking up on your companions.
  • Communication: Thoroughly discuss all important aspects of the hunt. Maintaining good communication with companions should eliminate most problems.

The Unwritten Law

The “rule of first blood” establishes a fair way to determine who can claim an animal that has been shot by two hunters. Although it may not have legal grounds, its strength and enforcement lie directly with understanding and true sportsmanship by all responsible hunters. The first hunter to place an arrow in an animal’s vital area, which draws enough blood to leave a trackable trail and thus has a good chance of bringing the animal into his or her possession, may claim the animal. Conversely, if the first hunter feels that the wound was superficial in nature and recovery of the animal was not likely, that hunter should give up claim to the game if another hunter brings it to the ground.

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