Labor Day arrives this month, along with the onset of the first major wing-shooting opportunity, dove hunting. Dove season brings out anybody and almost everybody with a shotgun. The first major wave of doves arrives just in time for the thousands of acres of cut corn and tons of standing sunflowers planted in their name. The level of excitement may not rival the killing of a trophy buck, but the opportunity to shoot at winged targets dancing in the wind is on the annual bucket list for just about every hunter out there. 

Dove hunts are typically held on agriculture lands with permission granted by generous landowners. While there are sometimes fees paid for usage, it sure doesn’t give hunters the right to leave their manners at home either. Hunters should always treat a landowner’s property with the utmost respect by packing out all trash and keeping road/field wear to a minimum. Hunters should clean up everything, including spent shotgun hulls and any trash that is found in the fields if it is theirs or not. 

Respectful usage goes well beyond dove hunting fields too. Deer, duck and other hunters should always reduce their impact on the properties they hunt by staying off wet roads, picking up trash and keeping the land in its preseason state. 

Every year, there are fewer and fewer acres available for hunting due to mistreatment of unsavory hunter groups. If hunters would take better care of leased lands, more land would be available to hunt in the future.