My Local Foodsource Includes Select Hunting… Here’s what’s coming (and what’s not)

Greetings all!

Regular readers may recognize a gap between my announcement that I was hunting back to the woods for the annual moose hunt, my return and the lack of update around what happened.  Those who have been around these parts for longer know what’s coming but I wanted to invite the rest of you to join in the journey.

In the next 9 days I will be posting my complete diary from 9 days in the forest as I participated in the Ontario Moose Hunt.  The posts will be as sensitive as possible as I understand this is a divisive topic.  My initial posting on hunting (aptly called ‘Confessions of a one-time vegetarian‘) provides a lot more detail on the topic and my difficulties in writing about it.  In short, it’s an activity that I am immensely proud of yet sometimes struggle to participate in at the same time.  It’s also something I was taught not to discuss in public from the time I was a child.

I hope you’ll consider coming along with the journey and that you’ll share your comments, ideas and thoughts.  I’ll expect we all treat each other with civility when we disagree but also challenge each other to consider new concepts and ideas – this, of course, applies to me as well.

Many may wonder why I have such a dramatic pretext – it is only tied into personal experience and the consistent experience of my youth that speaking of hunting in public generally went poorly.  I remember a Science Teacher who once publicly berated me for skipping a day of school for the harvest and then explained that she fished and often killed fish without eating them.  That was wrong in my world but it didn’t escape me that what I was doing was just as wrong in hers.  I understand that the topic is sensitive and divisive. 

The topic of hunting is largely misunderstood – often because of the portrayal of some members of the hunting community at large.  Our cabin is a food camp; we eat everything that we kill and have done so on the same land for longer than I have been alive.  We apply for licenses and are able to harvest very selectively (our cabin of 14 men can kill 1 adult female moose and several calves during the 6-days of Moose Hunting in our area this year). 

In the next 8 days I will post daily journal entries exactly one-week after they are written.  You’ll be able to follow along with our daily challenges and successes and hopefully experience a bit about what the hunt is about.  I will not expose you to shock-value or gory pictures – the intent is to open dialogue and not throw it in the face of an unsuspecting group of curious people  and friends.

It is my hope that by sharing a lot more of what happens that we will demystify what happens and open conversation to discuss the role of wild game as part of the food chain.  It’s difficult to argue that hunting will ever be kinder than a vegetarian lifestyle but compared to some practices mass agriculture, birth control for deer or the lack of sustainable fishing practices I am hoping to discuss alternatives.


  1. You mentioned dialogue and discussion in your message above, but, this is not something I have seen much of on your site. I know I have made comments that might have generated some comment / dialogue but, never received a response. Is there aome avenue for this that I am not aware of?

    • Hi Ben,

      Thank you for your comment – and appologies if I’ve missed your comments in the past. WHile I do my best to stay on top, I definately miss some (and many more in the past). I’ve done a search though and haven’t found any comments under your name on the entire site – I’m wondering if there’s a technical problem of some sort?

      I love your point about the site and the amount of dialogue/discussion. I’d love any input/ideas on how to increase that – it’s been a mystery to us on how to get more discussion going although I know that I am primarilly to blame when we miss comments like above. THe hunting posts of last year did open more dialogue – and there is a lot more fluid conversation in the facebook group (both with us and between members) although I know not everyone is over there either: The group is generally updated a few times a day and there’s a lot more discussion going on there.

      Certainly open to ideas and will up our efforts on encouraging it! Thanks for the input. J

      • Hi Joel,

        Thanks very much for your reply and welcome back from hunting! Here is a link to one of my comments :

        As for enticing more dialogue, you might consider simply asking for inputs on a particular aspect of your site or your newsletters? Another idea, would be to have some sort of contest to submit recipes or something and give the winner one of the t-shirts that your wife designed. Yet another idea would be a once a month guest article / newsletter. This would encoureage site participation and give you a break from providing one on that day?

        Anyway just some ideas. Thanks again for your reply and for all of your hard work maintaining Well Preserved……………….

        • Ben, thanks again for the comment – will definately try to stay on top. :) I`m going to investigate the back end of the site tomorrow – I still don`t see your comment at that link, curious if I`m missing something. :)

          Great ideas and will move towards more interactivity here as well. If you are looking for more of that sooner, it`s definately happening in the FB Group – they helped us pick our recipe for todays preserving class (it was for 8-12 year olds :)) and bounce a lot more ideas and comments back and forth there. We will definatley get some contest going in the next few months as well – really appreciate the comments, open to ideas at all times and am so appreciative that you took time to write.


          • Joel,
            Thanks for the reply. My comment is one of two following the article Update on the Brickworks Picnic, September 24, 2011 by Joel. Unfortunately I am not a big fan of FB. In MHO, FB stifles’ creativity and forces constraints that make web surfing/browsing more cumbersome / tedious while providing very little value added. Everyone becomes the same and individual creativity goes by the wayside. Instead, I like / appreciate the uniqueness of an individual’s site and the flexibility typically afforded versus the structured, rule based environment of FB. Lastly, the whole “like” process can get out of hand and is for the most part completely out of your hands to control.

            Anyway, I fully intend to continue receiving your letters and I read every one of them. And, I certainly hope that you don’t get rid of your web site and turn to FB as the only way anyone can interact with you.

            Please know that I fully realize how much work you have to put into your site. Further, I commend you for putting forth such a noble effort. I am guessing that there are many other WP followers who feel the same. Thanks…………………

  2. I appreciate that you take the time and energy to let us into your world with such sensitivity and thoughtfulness. I look forward to your posts!

  3. Very much looking forward to your series…

  4. I have a facebook account, but only to keep up to what the family and kids are doing. It doesn’t seem to be a good place for serious or in-depth discussion. Individual websites are far more creative and interesting to me. I know how much time you must put into this site and it really is appreciated, and read.

    As an old bird and deer hunter I’m looking forward to reading your moose journal.

    Your comment about people who approve of fishing, but don’t eat the fish, really strikes home. I often tell my non-hunting fishing friends that fish do not enjoy getting hooked, maimed, and then released injured. Then there’s the issue of live bait. Hunting and fishing should be a responsible harvesting of food, not portrayed as a ‘sport’.

    • Thanks Al,

      I always get a little excited when I hear from you; think of your past comments when I`m out there sometimes. It will be the duty of my generation to make sure there`s another behind us who will carry the tradition on long past any of us. :)


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