Hunters have a long list of concerns on which to focus when it comes to finding the right club. The wish-list depends on the individual hunter and the game being pursued.
A recent poll taken on hunters searching for a new club showed that most are concerned with finding good deer-hunting grounds. The No. 1 thing they’re looking for is a good ratio of hunters per acre. Good management practices were next, along with price and a family friendly atmosphere.
“There are several criteria by which I would personally analyze hunting clubs if I were actively looking: location, genetics, habitat, and deer density,” said Chris Jones, who hunts in Warren and Hinds counties. “I also value stability and a long-term approach to deer management.”
Before a hunter signs on the dotted line, some questions need to be asked to make sure it’s the right club:
• What types of game are available to hunt?
• What’s the cost of dues and everything that covers?
• How many turkey hunters?
• Are there any fishing or duck holes?
• What’s required for work days?
• Any limits on harvested game different from state limits?
• Are there antler restrictions on bucks?
• Does the club have a camp house or camper spaces available?
• Does the club have written rules? If it does, study them carefully.
This list could be much longer, and hunters should tweak questions to suit their needs. Sportsmen seeking to join a lease should surround themselves with like-minded folks.
Some clubs require applications and interviews. In the same spirit, hunters should also ask for names of current members as references. Search for former members that have left the club; they’re sure to provide the reasons why they left. Make sure it’s really the right club.