The Jedi Way and Hunting

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Tzall replied the topic: Re: The Jedi Way and Hunting

In most places around the world, in order to legally hunt you must buy a license and obey 'take' limitations. This is all part of a wildlife conservation program. Areas where hunting (as a sport) has decline, such as where I am in central Virginia there are an excessive number of deer that wind up in urban areas and are hurt far worse than the bullet from the hunter's gun would. Over the past decade I've seen too many reports about deer busting through windows of homes and stores and cut themselves up to leave massive trails of blood. I've seen reports of far too many people getting injured because of collisions with deer.

We've got to be mindful enough to look at the entire picture. Yes, perhaps it's mankind's fault because wolves have been driven out of the area hundred of years ago and big cats are few and far between putting the deer pretty much at the top of the food chain. That it is mankind's fault means more that it is our responsibility to properly manage the numbers - as for those that hunt for just sport, most of them donate their kills to programs to help feed the needy. While there are those that are irresponsible, they are few and far between and hunting generally does a service for the good of man and animal.

When it comes to survival, being lost in the wilderness, most experts will tell you that food is the lowest on your list of priorities. You can go for a month without food, though admittedly your mental and physical function will decline. Since rescue (depending on the situation) can generally arrive within three days, food ain't such a big deal - it, like a fire, is more of a morale booster in a survival situation than it is a necessity. You'd probably waste far more resources/energy hunting than you'd gain unless you know the quirks of the area. Foraging for wild edibles is a fun idea, but takes a lot of knowledge.

Your development of 'survival' skills, just like self defense, should be part of a life-long program. Both are associated with the idea of 'what-if' ... 'what-if I have to face a crisis?' You learn self defense to learn to face the potential crisis of being attacked physically. You learn first aid and cpr to face the potential crisis of having to care for an injured person. You learn urban and wilderness survival so that you know how to take care of yourself when you are lost or stranded in an unfamiliar area.

Most of us don't venture far enough out into the wilderness to truly need to learn wilderness survival skills. I do go on enough camping trips and hikes that it is prudent to learn the basics so that I know what to do in case I'm injured or a freak storm hits. But if you only drive through wilderness areas, you should focus more on Urban Survival.

For wilderness survival:

Get a three ring binder and some notebook paper. Always carry around pencil or pen and a camera, if possible. If you're interested in learning to forage for wild edibles, go take a walk through the woods and find a plant that interests you. Take a picture of it from a couple angles, then turn a leaf over and take a picture of how the underside of the leaf looks. Pull it from the ground and take a picture of it, including the roots. Now go home and do research on the internet to find out what it is and what it can be used for. Hopefully you weren't playing with poison ivy or other poisonous plant. SO you might want to wear gloves while doing things. Try to document how that plant looks in different seasons and store your pictures and notes in that three ring binder. Note things like it's smell, the type of soil that it grows in, whether it grows in open areas or deep in the woods.

Why? because if you purchase a book on wild edibles, it'll probably have a picture from one view and a drawing. Chances are you couldn't take that book out and readily identify the plant from the information that they provide. Different region, different time of year, different position of the sun, and the similarity of plants. And because of that, you could get killed because you thought you found a wild edible and wound up eating an extremely toxic plant.

Use similar ideas for tracks and animals. Even better, if you know where an animal that you'd like to study frequents - get some sand and build a 'sand trap'. Pour sand out on the ground so that as it passes its tracks are easily seen. Bait it, if you want and try to identify what the animal was doing when it made the track and document any differences that you see. Learn to identify it's spore -- poo, hair, tracks, lingering smell, and etc.
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Kol Drake replied the topic: Re: The Jedi Way and Hunting

And, as noted.. on the Internet, you can find listings for survival training camps and courses.  
They are not cheap by any means... but, for a goodly sum of money, and a week or two of your time, you can learn to 'make fire' and to pitch a camping tent or make an impromptu shelter, and other very basic 'survival skills'.

Again, as noted above, you can also go on 'walkabouts' in your own neighborhood/city/county/parks ,etc. and start seeing what is actually 'out there' and when something is in bloom or not.  Then grab the books from the local library (or from the Internet) of the local plants and critters and learn what is available during which seasons.  Also from the Internet, you can find tons of 'survival' books.... from the military handbooks, to boy scout handbooks, to hiker guides to... just about anything.

For introductory 'urban survival'...

Steampunk Survival Guide

A 'steampunk' survival pdf I've listed in other places.  Not only does it address various *easy* methods for treating water, it also speaks on shelters, solar cooking, weapons for protection, clothing/materials, and what makes sense to 'scrounge' if it came to that level of survival (car parts, steel from roadside railings, bronze and brass from decorative statuary... )   No, it does not tell you how to kill and skin a bear... but it does give you some common sense stuff about 'getting by' in a small town/urban 'survival scene'.

For skinning, cleaning, and cooking... best do some library/internet searching for books and/or training courses.
And, don't skip the day you get to pee on the skins to help process them for later use!

(( no, really.. pee!  For additional information on urine tanning, read Lotta Rahme's book, entitled "Leather: Preparation and Tanning by Traditional Methods". ))

***** added *****

Another webpage which speaks on various methods *and* critters you can skin and tan ... including fish!

http://www.kingsmerecrafts.com/page08.html
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Jax replied the topic: Re: The Jedi Way and Hunting

You never know, there may be local, affordable classes near you as well.  In Houston there's a man who teaches a local edible plants course every few months. the timing just hasn't worked out for me yet.  Check into things locally, the parks department, you may find something you had no idea existed (kind of like the plants!)
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Tzall replied the topic: Re: The Jedi Way and Hunting

Yes, certainly check your local parks and recreation or local adventure clubs. Edible plant 'hikes' are becoming popular as more and more people are getting interested in survival. I've seen such walks for as low as $35 and medicinal herbalism classes offered anywhere from $250 on up to several thousand, depending on the amount of times being spent. For the short survival classes on fire building, shelter building and etc. you should expect to pay between $75 (if you're really lucky) on up to $250 per day.
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Kol Drake replied the topic: Re: The Jedi Way and Hunting

About an hour or two south of where I live, there are a group of folks who teach the equivalent of a community college course... on how to make your own knives.  These guys have been doing it for years and years and cover selecting metals, working the metals, shaping the handle.. the whole kit and kaboodle.  Perhaps not as cool as rubbing two cheerleaders together to make fire but, having a good knife might save your life -- and knowing how to make one... might become a nice new hobby when folks want to buy your 'hand made crafty bits'.
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