You may have bought your Thanksgiving turkey from the supermarket, but there are a bunch of women out there who hunted down their own.
That's right, the number of women hunters is on the rise, the AP reported last month. While the overall number of hunters dropped 11 percent from 1991 to 2006, the number of females blasting Bambis increased 72 percent between 2001 and 2005. Hunting is most common in the west-north-central region of the country, and more hunters hunt big game (like deer) rather than smaller game (like rabbit), according to the 2006 National Survey of Fishing, Hunting, and Wildlife-Associated Recreation
With more women staying or becoming single, many are using their new-found free time to pursue hobbies like hunting, experts say
. Some women see the sport as a stress reliever, while others enjoy the beauty of the landscape where they stalk their prey. And they may be better at it than their male counterparts, too.
"Women tend to be a little easier to teach," says
Tyler Baskfield, a spokesman for the Colorado Division of Wildlife. "There's not that need to show the bravado that men have, and we've had great success with teaching some of these women to be wonderful shots."
The hunting and shooting industries have responded to the demand. The National Rifle Association
offers the program "Women on Target" to create more opportunities for women hunters. There's a magazine geared toward female hunters, Woman Hunter, and several Web sites, like WomenHunters.com
. Tell us:
Do you hunt your own dinner?