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Shooting Industry November 2010 - Page 31

Howard Communications Dealers, you already have varmint-hunting customers — some hunt locally, while others travel thousands of miles to take critters. TRIGGER TIME By Greg Staunton Lots Of T he million-plus hunters who go afield in search of varmints are an enthusiastic lot who tend to spend lots of money on guns, ammo and gear. A dealer’s bottom line can be enhanced by catering to this often-overlooked market — even if varmint hunting isn’t “big” in his area. Many dealers have customers who travel thousands of miles to hunt varmints and predators — everything from woodchucks and prairie dogs to foxes, coyotes, mountain lions and more. With the economy still uncertain, some customers may “discover” varmint hunting, as it can be a less-expensive option if they hunt native critters on their home turf. That, along with the ability to hunt in closed seasons, is one of the reasons varmint hunting is edging up in popularity. In a July 2010 survey from Southwick Associates, 27 percent of hunters said they hunted varmints, while nearly 21 percent sought coyotes and close to 11 percent hunted other predators. To stay current on the latest varmint and predator gear, listen to your customers. Also, read a few of the popular varminthunting online forums, where hunters share tall tales and exchange ideas about rifle calibers, ammo loads and the best calls in Advice From A Pro Remington Model 597 VTR (Varmint Target Rifle) has a digitized A-TACS camo finish and collapsible stock. Visit www.shootingindustry. com/remington.html. NOVEMBER 2010 31

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