Archery vs Rifle Hunting
Archery vs Rifle Hunting
When it comes to hunting, people are divided into two camps: bow hunters and rifle hunters. Each side tends to stick to their guns (pun intended) about their chosen weapon. That said, is there actually a difference between the two, and is one better than the other?
When it comes to cost, mid-range bows and mid-range guns are roughly the same investment. You could expect to spend about $500-600 for a reliable, trusty weapon to hunt with. While lower-priced options are available, their accessories tend to be less trustworthy. On the other hand, the maintenance costs vary. Guns require constant ammunition purchases, while arrows can be retrieved and reused. Bows need to have their strings replaced after heavy wear, while guns can take abuse for years without worry.
However, choosing between a bow and a rifle can be very important depending on the type of quarry you’re after. Certain types of animals are illegal to hunt with a bow, or vice versa. Other animals are impractical to hunt with a certain type of weapon. Take a quail, for instance; while you could shoot it with an arrow, you would destroy most of the meat. A small-caliber bullet or shotgun is a better choice. Deer are the most common targets for hunters, but using a bow to take down a deer takes a massive amount of skill and experience; something new hunters don’t have.
Rifles have an advantage over bows. While bows may be silent, rifles have scopes. While bow scopes exist, they’re ineffective because of the adjustments you have to make in order to hit your target. Gun Gods reviews a number of rifle scopes that allow you to hit your prey from a distance, long before they can detect that you’re there.
Hunting regulations can be a headache to navigate through. Some areas will be designated as archery only, which means you can’t hunt with a rifle in the area. Season dates can also vary depending upon the type of weapon used.
Bows are quieter than a rifle. While a missed rifle shot will send any quarry around you running for cover, a missed bow shot will rarely attract attention. If you’re not sure of your accuracy, a bow may be a better choice. However, bows may not take down a creature in a single shot as quickly as a rifle would. Either way, you’ll need to track your quarry after you’ve wounded it.
Whether you want to hunt with a rifle or a bow is usually a personal choice. The only times it will be required is if the landowner or state regulations restrict hunting with a certain type of weapon. Before making your choice, take the time to evaluate the pros and cons of both types of weapons and pick the one that is best for you. After you’ve built up some experience hunting with one type of weapon, you can purchase the other and give it a try. It keeps the experience fresh.