Hunting the wild turkey is one of the safest sports there is – much safer than much safer than riding a bike to the corner store or playing a few sets of tennis. In fact, turkey hunting is four times safer than playing Ping-Pong, and you are 50 times more likely to take a trip to the emergency room if you play golf.
Why is turkey hunting so safe?
One of the reasons is the National Wild Turkey Federation’s commitment to making hunter safety a top priority. In 1991, the NWTF initiated the National Turkey Hunting Safety Task Force to complement the hunter safety efforts of state agencies, the International Hunters Education Association, the National Rifle Association and the National Shooting Sports Foundation. The task force –composed of hunting and shooting safety experts from around the country–met in 1992 to develop a comprehensive hunter safety program, and has since produced and distributed over one million pieces of hunting safety information.
The number of turkey hunting accidents continues to decrease even as turkey hunters flock to the woods in increasing numbers. Spring turkey hunting accidents have decreased from a high of 8.1 per 100,000 in 1991 to a low of 2.95 per 100,000 in 2002.
pa st e =”font-family: Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif;”>The number of reported turkey hunting injuries has fallen by an impressive 50 percent since 1992.
Compare turkey hunting to shooting hoops, for instance, and you’ll realize turkey hunting is much safer. Last year, The Wall Street Journal reported that in 1999:
- For every 100,000 people who played basketball, 880 were seriously injured.
- 860 soccer players out of 100,000 left the field limping or worse.
- 800 out of 100,000 people were wounded on the softball diamond.
- 410 bike riders out of 100,000 got hurt.
- And for every 100,000 who played tennis, 260 were treated for torn ligaments, damaged cartilage and more.
Even swimming – one of the safest sports to participate in – resulted in 70 injuries per 100,000 participants, making it significantly more dangerous than turkey hunting.
The NWTF is dedicated to the conservation of the wild turkey and the preservation of the North American hunting tradition. For more information about the NWTF or about wild turkeys, call 1-800-THE-NWTF or visit the website at www.nwtf.org.