We all enjoy the change of seasons differently. I appreciate winter birds moving in, especially colorful ducks using the area to rest after a long flight, exhausted, needing nourishment.

Some people celebrate their arrival by hunting them. Fees are paid, areas set aside, even enhanced and protected to be able to shoot them. Using guns is part of the fun. I own a gun, and understand the excitement of firing one. But I admit I enjoy seeing ducks alive.

I am told to go somewhere else, out of the way of hunters. I wonder why I have to go somewhere else, and accept this cruelty, because shooting migrating ducks is fun for some. Yes, fees paid, licenses granted, as if that makes it OK.

I am aware of the history around hunting. The traditional killer attitude goes way back. Davy Crockett killed 105 bears in one season, then got elected to the Tennessee Legislature. Buffalo Bill is known for killing buffalo, yet didn’t know anything about them, other than they made good targets. The connection between stupidity and cruelty is a close one.

Some of us go outside to be restored by observing wildlife living, when lucky enough to see it. Now I hear gunfire in the distance from my home, as ducks scatter, frightened, gone in an instant.

Bang … poof … gone … mallards, pintail, wigeon … and we’re left with nothing, so the fun can go on. Isn’t it more fun playing with the grandkids?



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