Pheasant hunting is a fun activity, but a very serious level of responsibility comes with taking to the field. Pheasant hunting, like most forms of hunting, is not inherently dangerous, but it can become dangerous, or worse, when firearm safety guidelines are compromised.
taking Safety precautions in the field
It is important for all hunters to go through a Firearm Safety and/or Hunter Education course no matter how old you are or if your state requires it. While pheasants are a great game bird, the thrill of harvesting a rooster should never sacrafice safe handling of a firearm.
When going afield, it's important to refresh the basics of gun safety before each hunting season as taught by the National Shooting Sports Foundation:
- Always keep the muzzle pointed in a safe direction.
- Firearms should be unloaded when not actually in use.
- Don't rely on your gun's safety.
- Be sure of your target and what's beyond it.
- Use proper ammunition.
- If your gun fails to fire when the trigger is pulled, handle with care.
- Always wear eye and ear protection when shooting.
- Be sure the barrel is clear of obstructions before shooting.
- Don't alter or modify your gun and have it serviced regularly.
- Learn the mechanical and handling characteristics of the firearm you are using.
Practicing Hunter Ethics in the field
Equally as important as following firearm safety is being an ethical hunter. Though it differs for each and every one of us, all hunters in the field should have a personal code of ethics. Sometimes hunters are faced with situations that may be well within the hunting regulations, but may push the boundaries of ethical hunting. Remember, the actions of one hunter can affect how others view the traditional sport of hunting.
UPHOLD THE PHEASANTS FOREVER CODE
As a member of Pheasants Forever, I believe in conserving wildlife and protecting the environment. I promise to leave the outdoors a little better than I found it. I will hunt safely and treat hunting on public and private land as a privilege. I will always ask permission before hunting private land.