No Deer for Young Guns: Pennsylvania’s mentored-youth hunting program may leave out state’s top game animal

In January, Pennsylvania made big news in the outdoor world by becoming the first state to pass Families Afield legislation, thus empowering the state Game Commission to create a new mentored-youth hunting program allowing kids under 12 to hunt with licensed adults. Authorities now say they could have the program in place by this fall. But here’s the kicker: It may not include deer hunting.

In other words, say critics, it may be a hugely disappointing flop. ''Deer was always the centerpiece of this, and I think [leaving them out] will tremendously hamstring the effectiveness of this program,'' Rob Sexton of the U.S. Sportsmen's Alliance told a reporter with The Morning Call.