Since the stone ages, hunters of all kinds have been chasing down and catching prey for their dinner. So do you know what one of the most commonly hunted animals in the world has been for hundreds of years? That’s right, the rabbit. We see rabbits everywhere, and believe me they are all over the world. From the USA to Europe, rabbits have been feeding human beings for a long time. Naturally as a hunter, they are just another animal to master, that’s why we’re going to help you learn how to rabbit hunt.
Hunting rabbits is argued to be one of the most fun hunting sports, and now we are going to give you the low down on how to get your feet wet to enjoy this fantastic sport.
So how do we hunt rabbit?
First and foremost, get your hunting license! We don’t want to run out there and start blazing up the forest without legal documentation now do we? Check with your localities to see what kind of paperwork and certification you need for small game hunting, and apply. If you already are licensed, make sure your license is up to date before the next hunting season comes.
Where are rabbits to hunt?
As mentioned earlier, rabbits are all around the world, and I am sure you’ve seen at least one or two in your lifetime. The important thing is to know where they are usually hiding or hopping around. Let’s think about what they like to eat first. Rabbits’ favorite foods are grasses, clovers, weeds, wheat and crops including sometimes certain types of twigs. Also, of course the majority of rabbits live in the woods or forest, so anywhere that is a wooded area with these types of clearings is ideal.
The fact of the matter is rabbits can be found living quite close to civilization. What they really love is hiding out in brush and bushes, frequently coming out to feed or find food. Take a ride out into the nearby country and go scouting in these types of areas, and make a mental or written note at each spot you see a rabbit.
Wherever you look, make sure the land is not owned privately, and if you do find privately owned land, don’t hesitate to ask the landowner if it’s ok to hunt on his or her piece of land.
When can I hunt for rabbits?
Rabbit hunting season tends to run in the winter months. So if you are from a northern state, be ready to embrace the cold. Actually this works out much better for hunting, since rabbits love to be sneaky and hide under brush and bushes from other animals and human beings. With the winter season, you won’t have to deal with messy and bothersome vegetation. This type of environment is beneficial to rabbits. With the vegetation cleared you’ll have clear shots on these cottontails.
Also you’ll want to rise early in the morning, or at sunset. This seems to be a common theme among hunting different animals, and rabbits are no stranger to breakfast and dinner time. They’ll be looking to feed during these times, and so will you!
What do I bring on a rabbit hunt?
First thing you should consider isn’t even equipment. No it is not your gun. So what should you consider bringing on your rabbit hunt? Yes, correct, your trusty hunting dog! The fact of the matter is that your hunting dog will be your biggest asset on your rabbit hunts, if you so choose to bring one along.
So how do these pups help the hunting process? Well what happens is, your hunting dog (Gunner- or one of the other 41 best hunting dog names!) find the dwelling spot of the rabbit. When they spot it, they drive the rabbit out of its “hole” or really the small area which they live. Since rabbits don’t go too far from their homes, they will start hopping slowly once out of danger from the dogs. That’s your best chance to add to your rabbit bag!
Among other things to bring are the following:
License: Explained above
Rabbit bag: Different areas have different limits of how many rabbits you can take away in your rabbit bag for each hunt. Check with your local hunting regulations to see.
Snares: Snares are a great addition to your hunting repertoire if legal. Find out if they are allowed to use in your area
Gun: See below for the types of guns we will be using.
Bullets: Remember enough ammo when you hunt.
Hunter Orange: This is very important for safety purposes. Remember to wear your hunter orange hats and vest to let other hunters know
For any hunting sport, a common question is what the best weapon to bring on the hunt. What will give us the best chance to pile up rabbits in the shortest amount of time?
One option is an air rifle, a .22 rifle, or you can even use a hand gun for hunting rabbits. However, most hunters use shotguns to hunt rabbit. Shotguns offer the most spray and if you get the right type, you can be quick to shoot a rabbit scurrying past. Rabbits aren’t the fastest animals in the wild, but they can move pretty quickly, so we need to have a quick to shoot gun. Shotguns of any type will suffice, but its best to look into a 20-gauge shotgun for your cottontail hunting endeavors.
How do I shoot a rabbit?
Depending on how the rabbits are hopping, we will want to shoot these cottontails a certain way. If you are using a shotgun, you will want to aim for the front end of the rabbit, or the head. The spray on a shotgun makes it almost impossible not to kill the rabbit if it’s a well-aimed shot. With air rifles you’ll want to aim for the head as well, but you’ll have to be more precise. Get ready to shoot again because with air rifles not being as powerful, you may miss and hit the body, which is not necessarily a kill shot. Either way, always aim for the brain. When hitting the body, it damages the meat, and we all know we want the best quality rabbit meat we can afford.
So I’ve gunned down a few rabbits, what now?
Now it’s time for dinner! There are many ways to use rabbit meat to make good meals, especially for camping. Look online for some good rabbit meat recipes so that you can use your hunting day’s winnings to cook up the tastiest meal possible.
For centuries rabbits have made for some of the most convenient dinner meats, and times haven’t changed much in many parts of the world.
So there you have it. These are the essentials of rabbit hunting. Rabbits populate so many corners of this world we live in, and I’m sure you will have no trouble finding these furry creatures around your local area. If you hope to take up this hunting sport with a head start, read and re read this article. Find some local rabbit hunters and pick their brain. Go out hunting with a seasoned rabbit hunter. This hunting sport is simple and can be learned quickly if you put your mind to it. Don’t be afraid to ask questions. Enjoy your hunt!