Characteristics of Deer Hunting Lessees in South Carolina and Mississippi

Characteristics and activities of hunters leasing white-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus) hunting rights in South Carolina and Mississippi during 1984 were assessed by mail survey. Of 520 questionnaires delivered, 66% were returned. Safety (81 %), fellowship (76%), and higher quality hunting (70%) were ranked as the most important reasons for leasing hunting rights by respondents in both states. The majority of hunters in both states felt that the right to post leased lands was very important, with about 50% indicating they would discontinue leasing if posting rights were taken away. Over 30% of the respondents in both states reported they would stop deer hunting if they could not lease hunting rights. In South Carolina, 41% of the hunters were primarily still hunters, and 59% hunted deer primarily with dogs; while in Mississippi 59% still hunted, and 41% hunted with dogs. Differences (P ≤ 0.05) in socioeconomic, attitudinal, and club-land utilization responses were detected by state and method of hunting.

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