Deer hunting has been in steady decline for decades, as older hunters die off and fewer and fewer young people take up hunting. And this morning, a widely-covered story is likely to sour countless more people on hunting. A study has just shown that lead bullets fragment far more than previously thought, with lead turning up far from the site of the wound. The study’s co-author says:
These fragments really go a long way. The take-home is if you shoot lead bullets, there’s going to be lead in the venison and there’s not much you can do about it.
And it gets worse. The AP article reports that:
The study also found that rinsing carcasses didn’t eliminate lead. Instead, it may simply spread the lead to other areas of the meat.
I’ve got to think the incentive to go hunting drops dramatically when you’ve got to worry about ingesting lead from the deer you’ve shot. While I suppose there is a relatively easy fix, in terms of making bullets from different material, this issue is still certain to drive hunting further to the fringes. Link.