November 28, 2023

Atlatl Hunting in Pennsylvania A Possibility

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The atlatl is a primitive, pre-historic weapon that Pennsylvania hunters want to use for deer hunting. It predates the bow and arrow and many historians believe that the atlatl was used for a long period of time before the bow and arrow evolved. Both weapons are similar but engineers say that the reason for the evolution into the bow and arrow was due to better accuracy and velocity of the arrow.

Members of the Pennsylvania Game Commission’s staff had recommended to the board that they not approve the weapon for deer hunting because they were not convinced the weapon was lethal enough to use on deer but in January, the commission unanimously gave it a preliminary approval.

The Humane Society of the United States spoke out in opposition to the weapon saying it was inhumane and would lead to too many wounded and suffering animals. There has been similar responses from individuals and groups during the debate period. Equally, there has been support and most remain neutral in the use of the primitive weapon.

The game commission is in the middle of their April meetings when they will accept or reject many proposals for the upcoming hunting seasons. Approving the atlatl is one item they will either give final approval or reject.

Tom Remington