North Dakota Program Helps Open Waterfowl Hunting to Youth

It's no secret that waterfowl hunting can be an expensive activity, particularly decoys. But a Ducks Unlimited program that allows hunters to use a trailer full of decoys for free if they take a child hunting is giving young would-be waterfowl hunters an introduction to the sport.

From this story on kfyrtv.com:
_Young hunters grow up to become adult hunters, and many adult hunters are big supporters of conservation groups like Ducks Unlimited. But there aren`t as many youth hunters in the state as there used to be. Ducks Unlimited has held a number of programs throughout the summer to introduce kids to waterfowl hunting. Now, those who want to try it out with their families can do so without buying a lot of the expensive gear up front. Fourteen-year-old Max Barta loves waterfowl hunting.

__"It

s just the experience of being in the field and watching the ducks and geese flying around the decoys," said Barta. He

s been going out with his dad for about four years and tries to bring friends along each time. "I just tell them come out with me, I`ll show them. They love it," added Barta.

But not every kid has someone to go with or the gear they need. That

s where this trailer comes in. "At least for waterfowl, equipment can be a challenge," said Scott Stephens, Ducks Unlimited director of conservation planning. "You can use trailers full of decoys and equipment, and that can be expensive." But this trailer is free. "We wanted to offer some of that so people could get a taste of that before they invested a lot of money and see if it

s something the kids are engaged in and want to try," explained Stephens.

The trailer is available to anyone who is taking a child under 16 years old to try waterfowl hunting. Stephens said, "They`re really set up to take it, drive it out, get permission to hunt the field, set out the decoys and go." All a hunter needs to bring are guns, ammunition, maybe a pair of waders and a lot of enthusiasm._