More and more mature adults are taking to the field each year to hunt for the first time in their lives. You’ll find 30-year old hipsters swinging crossbows and 40-year old account managers raising a rifle on public lands across the country for the first time each fall.
One of the fastest-growing demographics of new hunters is rumored to be adult women. And Florence Teeters of Price County, Wisconsin certainly fits into this category. She killed her first deer this year, with her son, at age 104.
In an interesting 2016 report from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife and the U.S. Census Bureau, it was found that hunters over the age of 65 made up just 14% of hunters nationwide. Hunters age 55 to 64 made up the largest 10-year segment at 24%, while 52% was made up of adults age 25 to 54.
Women made up just 10% of total hunters nationwide, but the report didn’t discuss the age of the sexes individually. I’m really curious about how many women hunters are over age 99.
Not only did Mrs. Teeters kill her first deer this year, but the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources reports that she also goes ziplining, attends Mardi Gras each year, and tends her garden in her bare feet. She’s clearly got the kind of zest for life we all hope to maintain. And taking on new adventures is a great way to keep life interesting.
“Yes, it was her idea to get the license. And, yes, that was her first license,” Florence’s son, Bill Teeters said.
After she bought her license, she posed with a couple of DNR conservation wardens, Joe Paul and Nick Hefter. “I thought it was fantastic,” Warden Paul said.
Word of the new licensee made it to the top of the DNR, and Secretary-designee Preston D. Cole commented on the situation.
“This speaks to the adage that you should never underestimate the power of our senior citizens. After raising a family of hunters, this young lady chose this opportunity to partake in Wisconsin’s long-established tradition of deer hunting. We join the rest of Wisconsinites in celebrating her outstanding accomplishment,” Cole said, “On behalf of the DNR, we thank Mrs. Teeters for her participation in this year’s annual gun deer hunt and for helping keep Wisconsin’s hunting heritage alive. This proves that Wisconsin’s gun deer hunting season is for every generation.”
Wisconsin’s gun season is just nine days long, but Florence ended up killing her buck on opening day. She hunted her property in Price County from a blind with her son, Bill. The blind had a comfortable chair and the two of them only waited about two hours before her whitetail buck arrived.
“I tapped her on her knee, and I pointed,” Bill said. Florence waited for her shot and then took it. “She was so excited and saying, ‘I got a buck! I got a buck!'” Bill said.
It turns out that Florence Teeters is the oldest person to purchase a license and kill a deer in the state’s recorded history. They could probably add “first-time licensee” to that record, as well.
There was a lot of news last year about 105-year old Virginian Clyde Roberts who was still hunting. But he’s been doing it for about 40 years. Both he and Florence Teeters should be encouraging examples to those adults who think they may be a little too old to start hunting.
Who’s the oldest hunter you know?