Bow hunting has grown into popular sport in East County

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Bow Hunting has developed into a popular sport and hobby for some East County residents. It’s not just for children who grew up playing traditional kids games such as “Cowboys and Indians”, it’s now an actual sport enjoyed by adults.

In addition, it is a livelihood and a sport for East County residents Eric Ueckert, 32, of El Cajon, and, Scott Jones, 27, of La Mesa. Both work at Performance Archery in San Diego. The men have bow hunted in East County as well as in other regions.

Bow Hunting has developed into a popular sport and hobby for some East County residents. It’s not just for children who grew up playing traditional kids games such as “Cowboys and Indians”, it’s now an actual sport enjoyed by adults.

In addition, it is a livelihood and a sport for East County residents Eric Ueckert, 32, of El Cajon, and, Scott Jones, 27, of La Mesa. Both work at Performance Archery in San Diego. The men have bow hunted in East County as well as in other regions.

Jones said that he took up-bow hunting when he was 15. His father, Steve, was a big influence, as he was also a bow hunter, but not “as much into it” as he is.

Jones explained that he was working at an archery store in Covina, when Performance Archery owner Bob Fromme approached him about working at his store. He said that the rest is history, and now he’s promoting the love of archery.

“There are guys out there that will try to hunt for the trophy animals,” Jones said. A trophy buck killed in East County, with a 147 non-typical and 143 typical antler rack, has been surrounded by controversy.” But he doesn’t necessarily go for the trophies or legends. “I just enjoy being out in the field by myself,” Jones said.

Co-worker Ueckert hunts turkeys and hogs. “One bow hunting season for a particular animal, like deer, ends and another season picks up. Hog season, considered a pest by some, is year round,” he explained.
“It’s an adrenaline rush.” Ueckert said about the actual bow hunting, He has bow hunted for over 8 years, but has only become “hard core” into the sport in the last two years.

When asked about his hunting strategies, Ueckert replied that he utilizes the ‘Western-style’ tactics known as ‘spot and stalk’ and ‘calling in’. Jones concurs that he uses these tactics as well.

Tierrasanta resident, John S., 38, (didn’t want to give his last name), stated, “I’m a hunter. I took up-bow hunting at 16. I’ve not only hunted in the Dakotas (and other states), but also in Mount Laguna.” He said that he has used Lyons & O’Haver Taxidermy in La Mesa for what he shoots, but he butchers his own animals for meat.
Ueckert and Jones explained that what could be lost on those who buy their meats at grocery stores, and object to any hunting, is that bow hunting can be used for animal population control (along with other techniques such as pens), both here and in other parts of the country. Slaughterhouses, actually come into play for meats sold at grocery stores.

Jones emphasized, “All the meat from hunting is organic with no hormones.”
Regarding previous controversy reported last year by the U-T San Diego regarding how a ‘trophy buck’ was allegedly shot and killed in Julian as a result of a bow hunter being too close to a structure, and alleged that an outsider (North County resident) got the buck, and not a local.

In response, both the two archers reported that they were aware of the feral pig problem in the county long before others. They explained that the wild pigs (boars) were considered out of control.
Animal population control aside, the two concurred that cooking what you bow hunt is also part of the art. To illustrate, Jones said, “I barbeque and use wild game cookbooks. I have some recipes using marinades too.”

To conclude archery has been used for self-protection and self-preservation throughout history. For example, for centuries, the Kumeyaay Indians of San Diego County have used bows and arrows for hunting food and for protection.

For further information visit, www.performancebowhunting.com or www.bownarrowshop.com.

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