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Should Suppressors Be Legal For Hunting?

Is it time for suppressors to become legal for hunting? As more and more states debate the benefits of suppressors the argument grows stronger to make them legal for hunting. Suppressors are already common across Europe for hunting. It makes sense to them to be quiet while hunting so why not here? There is a stringent and expensive federal process in place to own and use a suppressor. Is there really any reason not to allow their use?

One of the main debates against their use is it could make it easier to poach game. There’s no argument there. Sure it could make it easier to poach game. But the argument ends there. Just because you have a suppressor doesn’t mean you’ll be a poacher. If you’re that type of person a suppressor isn’t going to drive you to break the law.

Think of it this way. You own a car right? Just because you own a car doesn’t mean you’ll use it as a getaway vehicle in a heist. There’s always going to be a certain percentage of the population that breaks the law. All the laws in the world won’t change that fact. But the majority of you are law-abiding folks and for a few of you a suppressor could make a difference in hunting. How? Consider a couple of these reasons.

1. It saves your hearing: This is important for thousands of avid shooters. It’s a simple step to wear hearing protection at the range, but it’s quite another to wear it while hunting. Even the best hearing protectors that amplify natural sounds make it difficult to hear animals moving about your hunting location. A suppressor allows you to ditch the muffs and catch distant coyote howls, and not worry about trying to put ear plugs in while a coyote is bearing down on your calling stand.

2. It keeps the countryside quiet: Most of us don’t mind the “bang” of rifle now and then, but as urban America expands so do people not so crazy about rifle reports. This would allow you to shoot in rural areas with a higher population density and not irritate the neighbors. Plus, if you like to sight in or try different loads from your reloading bench the extra shots fired won’t stir the pot.

3. A suppressor helps you stay on target after the shot: Suppressors reduces recoil and muzzle rise so your sight picture stays relatively intact. This means you can see if you hit your target. It also increases your chance of getting off a second shot by actually witnessing a miss. It also tames a rifle for youth shooters or small-framed hunters like a hunting spouse.

4. Shoot multiple coyotes without them hearing you: This is a top consideration for avid predator hunters. You can call in a second coyote after a shot, especially inexperienced pups, but don’t always bet on it with a seasoned canine. The muffled report doesn’t put predators on as high alert and if it is a long shot they won’t be on alert at all, giving you a few extra seconds to put one, two or even three more pelts in the pickup bed.

Currently 39 states allow you to legally own a suppressor and 29 allow you to put those to use during hunting season.

Join in the conversation. Do you think it’s time to make suppressors legal for hunting in every state?

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