LITTLE ROCK, Ark. – The Army Corps of Engineers, Little Rock District, urges all hunters to be safe this fall when hunting at the 12 lakes in Arkansas and southern Missouri and the Arkansas River.
Whether your hunting season started at the end of summer or you’re still awaiting your first opportunity to venture out, hunting safety is a must.
First let’s take a moment to think about your favorite hunting spot. This may be a short boat ride across a cove to a grove of flooded willows or a hike back to a small opening tucked into the trees that is sure to draw an early morning harvest opportunity.
Either way, before you put on your hunting gear, here are five safety musts to ensure many return visits to your favorite spot.
Follow firearms safety practices:
Treat every gun as if it were loaded. Never point a gun at everything you’re not willing to shoot, ever! Keep your finger off the trigger until you are ready to shoot. Be sure of your target and what is beyond it.
Knowing your surroundings:
Learn the location of the property boundaries, buildings, trails and any potential hazards where you are hunting. Know where to hunt and where other people and structures are located.
Wear your safety equipment:
State laws require specific equipment or attire to be worn while hunting. It is also important to remember to wear your life jacket while hunting from a boat or a safety harness when climbing and while hunting from a tree stand.
Respect other public land users:
Public land allows multiple different users; hikers, bikers and wildlife watchers have just as much privilege to use public land as hunters. Respect their use too.
Non-hunters near hunting areas:
Non-hunters and their pets should wear highly visible clothing and make enough noise for adjacent hunters to know your presence. To avoid hunters altogether, many public use area around the lakes are restricted from hunting.
The Army Corps of Engineers, Little Rock District wishes you a safe and successful hunting season. Little Rock District recreation information can be found on the Internet at www.swl.usace.army.mil, on Facebook at www.facebook.com/littlerockusace, and on Twitter at https://twitter.com/#!/usacelittlerock.