Ted Nugent: Hunting is Cool
Rising to stardom in the ‘70's within a rock and roll culture that promoted excess, drugs and alcohol, Ted Nugent remained an enigma amongst many of his peers and mentors by refusing to partake in substances that would destroy his body and mind.
Instead, when not touring the world with his band, Nugent would head to the woods and spend every free moment hunting-a passion that still exists today.
Love him or hate him, there's no denying the fact that Ted Nugent walks to the beat of his own drum (or sounds of his own guitar) and for decades has been a driving force behind the promotion of gun ownership, hunting and hunter's rights. Through his Spirit of the Wild television show, Kamp For Kids (an organization dedicated to introducing and promoting the outdoors to youth) and writing for more than forty publications, Nugent is continually working to ensure that hunting will remain a right for future generations.
Currently traveling across North America on a summer tour, Nugent took the time to talk to Ontario Monster Whitetails a few weeks before his show in London, Ontario to discuss hunting and whitetail deer.
As urban sprawl slowly eats away at property that once was full of wildlife, many hunters, especially those in southern Ontario, are having a difficult time finding available hunting land. Explaining how activism is the key to success, Nugent says that, "These are serious concerns for the hunting community and fortunately some activists have been addressing this pivotal issue for a while now." Apathy is a word not known to Nugent. "This isn't an easy task and much work is at hand, but as always, activism will force the hand of bureaucrats to implement upgraded policy in the name of logic as long as we, the hunters who care, keep up the pressure." As to obtaining permission to hunt on property, "A landowner properly approached will usually welcome a hunting family who are willing to take female animals for herd control. Communication is the key. "
Preferring to hunt whitetail deer with a bow, Nugent is perplexed by the division within the hunting community when it comes to discussing crossbows. "Fact: Hunting is cool. Fact: Crossbows are cool. Like longbows, recurves, compounds, black powder guns, shotguns, rifles and handguns, these simple tools of choice have irrefutably proven to be effective, desirable and legitimate weapons of choice for sporting families everywhere." Expressing severe distain for those who feel they should dictate what other hunters should use, Nugent doesn't mince words. "That any thinking person could possibly find fault with another's chosen method of hunting is clearly an indictment to the foolish, soulless selfishness of some small mind elitists who, for some bizarre mental derangement, could possibly think they have the right, power or authority to dictate how a hunter chooses to kill his or her game. It's pathetic, really."
Many homeowners across Ontario enjoy watching deer winter on their property when cold weather arrives in December. Although the Ministry of Natural Resources discourages feeding deer except in severe winter conditions when food is scarce, Nugent disagrees. "Feeding songbirds and other wildlife is a good thing and improves the overall enjoyment of increased animal encounters." When questioned about the possibility of the threat of Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) and the chance of it being spread via close contact at feeding stations, Nugent does not believe that it is as dangerous as it is made out to be. "I do not believe the hysteria over CWD by any stretch of the imagination. It appears to be disconnected bureaucrats knee-jerking to misinformation and junk science more than any real threat."
Though some parts of Ontario have a whitetail deer season lasting up to six weeks in length, many WMUs only have two weeks and the actual time spent in the field hunting by some hunters may only be a day or two.
When asked for his five top tips for hunting whitetail deer, Nugent offers this advice.
1) Go hunting at every possible opportunity.
2) Hunt as slow and stealthy as you possibly can and maintain extreme discipline.
3) Concentrate on achieving a level of intense awareness of everything around you to better understand and become one with the beast.
4) Diligently practice with your weapon of choice in order to be as knowledgeable, safe, aware, accurate, deadly and efficient as possible.
5) Study the habits and habitat of the animal as often as possible and consider hunting a year-round pursuit.
And once you've taken your whitetail? "Marinate it in olive oil, Vernors ginger ale, garlic, pepper and garlic salt overnight in a covered glass container. Drip, dry and grill for heaven on Earth. Of course that is as long as you have killed, cleaned, aged and processed it with tender loving care. Then...eat ‘em up!"