Another benefit for hunters is if they do draw and harvest an animal, it doesn’t count against their annual bag limit. Participating in the Oklahoma Dept. of Wildlife’s controlled hunts is an inexpensive way to further the hunting experience, which is why I looked forward to this lotto every year.
Brent Elliott has been hunting his entire life. For him, hunting is a hobby, activity, and endeavor that enriches the seasons he looks forward to. As a landowner, Elliott practices his own conservation efforts and manages a quality deer herd, yet he still looks forward to drawing in on the controlled hunts. He believes these hunts benefit both adults and youth hunters due to their high percentage of harvest success.
Elliott believes the best benefits of controlled hunts are for youth because they provide so much education and opportunity. This year, several of Brent’s nine children drew in for the Foss Lake, Atoka, and USDA Grazing areas. Unfortunately, these were postponed due to the government shutdown. Elliott encourages all youth hunters to participate in controlled hunts because of the quality youth programs the ODWC has to offer.
“Hunting starts with education,” Elliott said. “Hunting areas offered through the hunts provide the high numbers of game kids need to encounter to become active hunters.
“Spending time with family while teaching safe practices and simply enjoying God’s creation is what hunting is all about. Hunting also teaches the sober reality that dead is dead, and there is no reset button in life. I spend a lot of time hunting with my kids on my own place, but really look forward to the youth controlled hunts because of the high number of wildlife my kids will see. My son, Becker, started going on the controlled hunts when he was eight, and I think the target rich environment contributed to his abilities as hunter,” he said.