Basically creating this thread to show what I have learned over the last 3 years (since I began) hunting. I wasn’t raised with a father that hunted and my grandfather who hunted passed away when I was young, so I’ve kind of just stumbled into it.
Also if you are fortunate to have a legitimate homestead, then you are probably aware “hunting” and “hunting for sustenance” are completely different and the state may recognize different regulations for you.
Anyway of course you will need to check your regulations for the area you live in, in USA/Canada hunting laws vary county to county… different times of the year etc. So if you live in the “New World” don’t be afraid to contact Fish and Wild Life for info, although the less contact with government organizations the better.
First off, some countries may require a hunting license which can be an in-person course or even 8hour course offered online. In my area this is not required and the course costs roughly $80-$100
After you hold a license or some form of identification that says you hunt/gather, this gives you the ability to buy tags and register for draws, the price for tags/draws varies depending on game I would set aside $150 for this every year, and as I said in the area you live this could be completely different.
Now comes equipment, you can hunt with “out dated” and shit equipment, I find most ethical shots on animals you stumble across are definitely inside of 200yds (180metres). And once again depending on the country you live in firearms licenses/restrictions will come into effect. So know your countries gun laws.
My recommended caliber for a first time hunter is the .308 or 7.62x51 NATO, in NATO countries it is cheap, plentiful and will kill everything from Deer to bears. If you live in Eastern Bloc, maybe 7.62x54r is your choice for a very cheap cartridge.
I have 2 methods when it comes to weapons, “Buy once cry once” or keep it as cheap as possible. In my area I can buy a used .308 with an old scope easily for under $600, as long as its safe and shoots straight you will be fine, and besides if you hunt without a scope its cheaper, using Irons is sigma.
More equipment would be proper boots, as well as camouflages and a decent backpack to carry your knives and food/water in. Of course this will change if you are planning day trips, or weekends away from home etc… $400 for clothes, boots and a cheap backpack.
So now you’ve got regulations figured out, and you’ve got a gun and a box of ammo. So far into it $1250
Next is processing the animal after its killed, you can honestly get a cheap knife set with a sharpener on amazon for $57, the one I use is maybe $80… And now you will need bags to pack it out (if quartered where killed), I find the cheapest thing to do is use FEED Bags that farmers use, go to any farmer supply store and they cost me $1 and hold around 70lbs of weight, but they will leak blood, also they can be cleaned and reused!
The final fees will be butchering fees, these vary a lot. Generally burger is the cheapest to make. HOWEVER, I’ve once paid $700 to have roughly 700lbs of meat butchered into Roasts,steaks,burger and even different sausage and I bet to purchase that in store would’ve been closer to $4000. It lasted me over a year.
I’ve kept this fairly general since we have members all across the planet. One thing I didn’t mention is different forms of hunting that may or may not be legal in your area and they will change the pricing a lot. Examples are Bow hunting and spear hunting while you can avoid firearms restrictions and save money on that end with bow hunting, it is a lot harder, and a good bow starts around $1000 in my opinion. Also to bow hunt you will need to purchase a variety of other equipment.
I would say a liberal estimate to upfront costs of hunting on a budget, and shooting something within the first year would be $1500, and as years go by it gets cheaper and cheaper…
I did not include the cost of butchering in the final $1500, but I can make another thread on “Butchering on a Budget” I just did it recently and saved myself probably $650.