Bow hunting on base

Hunters at the Marine Corps Logistics Base are only allowed to use a bow and arrow. / Romney Smith

Hunters at the Marine Corps Logistics Base are only allowed to use a bow and arrow.

The base offers a safety class and MCLB Natural Resource Manager Julie Robbins says they cover a lot of ground. "We teach them how to find game. So the hunters have to learn how to track, they have to learn about stand placement, where to put their stands on the game trail, how to play the winds so the deer don't smell them. We teach them about recovering their animals, once they've harvested or shot an animal, then we teach them how to follow signs and trails and make a successful recovery" says Robbins.

Chief Warant Officer Three Stephen Sutton says after hunters learn how to clean the animal and prepare the meat, they're ready to hit the 1100 acres of forest on base and wait patiently for a deer to come within range. "I've been hunting for years and years and years and just took this bow hunter safety class for the first time this year and picked up skills that I hadn't really known about before and also refreshed my memory on things that are real important" says Sutton.

When hunting on base the reason Marines aim for the vital areas of an animal is to achieve a quick humane harvest which prevents animal suffering. "Typically when you hit a lung or heart shot the animal travels a very short distance and you're able to recover it quite quickly" says Robbins.

Marines say target practice from an elevated position and 3-D targets makes deer and small game hunting easier. "Perfect practice makes perfect so when you practice here on the range and you can hit the vitals every time it's much more likely that you're going to be successful when it's time to hunt" says Sutton.