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NO FIREARMS FATALITIES THIS DEER SEASON
February 13, 2007
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE CONTACT: Ray Metzler, 1-800-245-2740
For the first time since records began in 1973, the Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (ADCNR) Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries (WFF) Division reports this past deer season, which ended on January 31, 2007, there were no firearms or tree stand related fatal incidents.
Nine non-fatal firearms incidents have been reported since the opening of dove season in September and only four of the nine occurred as a result of deer hunting activities. Eight non-fatal tree stand incidents have been reported since the opening of the archery deer season on October 15, 2006.
Statistics from the National Safety Council indicate hunting is one of the safest outdoor recreational activities. In fact, nationwide there are fewer than 10 firearms related incidents requiring emergency room treatment per 100,000 participants. Although hunting is a very safe activity, Pugh reminds all hunters to continue to use good judgment and exercise all safety precautions during the remainder of this hunting season.
Pugh also strongly urges all hunters to properly identify their target and what is beyond prior to squeezing the trigger. In addition, he recommends that all hunters take additional steps to protect themselves.
Abiding by these safety tips offers hunters additional protection from the actions of other hunters.
· Wear at least 144 square inches of blaze orange above the waist, visible from any angle or a solid blaze orange cap. This is required by regulation during gun deer season.
· Turn on a small flashlight while traveling to and from your stand during low light conditions.
The small beam of light identifies you as a human while you are walking around in low light conditions which sometimes make it difficult for another hunter to properly identify his target.
Hunting season for small game species including quail, squirrels, rabbits, raccoons, and opossums runs through Feb. 28, 2007.
Hunter education provides participants with basic information regarding wildlife laws, management, firearms safety, tree stand safety, hunter ethics, and other subjects related to becoming a safe, responsible hunter. Hunter education courses are offered in two formats, a traditional style classroom setting and there is now an online course that is completed by attending a field day for three to five hours. This formal education process is enhanced when coupled with learning experiences provided by adult mentors such as parents, grandparents, or other hunting partners.
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The Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources promotes wise stewardship, management and enjoyment of