How Your Gun Store in Ottawa Works with You to Preserve the Ecosystem
As any hunting store in Ottawa knows all too well, hunting and conservation efforts need to go hand-in-hand. With appropriate conservation regulations, hunters play an important role in preventing overpopulation and maintaining a balanced ecosystem. Before such regulations came into place, hunters frequently hunted species to extinction—or very close to it. Look at the dodo or the American buffalo. It must have been easy back then to look at the wild as an inexhaustible source of wild game, or else to not understand how the loss of a single creature could impact an entire ecosystem.
In today’s gun stores, Ottawa hunters and outdoors enthusiasts learn as much about how to use hunting weapons as they do about how to hunt responsibly. The national capital region rests at the intersection of several zones—called wildlife management units, or WMUs—and knowing which unit or sub-unit you’re in is just as important as understanding the differences between each one, according to hunting stores in Ottawa.
What’s the Difference?
Ontario isn’t all just one big, homogenous ecosystem. It’s full of little pockets where things can change radically over just a few kilometres, and this is why the regulatory bodies have divided it into 95 main units. In each unit, there are minor differences in terms of what game you can hunt, when open seasons begin and end, and what hunting methods (bow, rifle, crossbow, etc.) are allowed. The purpose of this is to make sure each region is properly conserved on a local scale. As a hunter, your responsibility is to know the regulations of the unit or sub-unit where you intend to hunt.
What’s My WMU?
You can find information regarding different WMUs online through the provincial government, or you can talk to the professionals at your gun store in Ottawa. Our region includes zones 64, 65, and 66, with the boundary between zones 64B and 65 actually cutting right through the city of Ottawa. Zone 64 includes Ottawa west, stretching from Perth and Smiths Falls in the south, to Arnprior in the northwest. Zone 65 includes Ottawa east, and runs from Morrisburg to Hawkesbury. Zone 66 includes Kemptville and Merrickville, and falls just shy of Brockville in the south. Any Hunting store in Ottawa recommends that you plan in advance which WMU you intend to hunt in, to familiarize yourself with its boundaries and regulations, and to print out a map that you can use to ensure you stay in the proper zone.
Between the efforts of the Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry (who spends 100% of what they make from hunting licenses on conservation), gun stores in Ottawa, and you, the hunter, conservation and hunting can go hand in hand, ensuring a balances ecosystem for years to come.