November 2015
Our Outdoor Heritage

A Better Hunter

Alabama Hunting & Fishing Almanac moonrise/moonset times can improve your hunting experience.

The Hunting Heritage Foundation is happy to announce the publication and distribution of the 2015-2016 4th Edition Alabama Hunting & Fishing Almanac with 26,000 copies published in partnership with the Alabama State Chapter of the National Wild Turkey Federation and Alabama Farmers Cooperative. AFC and H. T. Hackney Co. have distributed the Almanac to over 500 retail outlets across the state for free giveaway to customers.

The Almanac is now also available electronically at and through a major partner,, an innovative Internet-based shopping venue for hunters. The publication may be downloaded for free at either site. Another major partner, Great Days Outdoors Magazine, has sent the Almanac electronically to subscribers as a free bonus issue.

The Alabama State Chapter of NWTF provided major funding for the Almanac as a part of NWTF’s "Save the Habitat. Save the Hunt." initiative. This initiative recognizes that all the good habitat work undertaken by NWTF and others is for naught unless we also work to sustain the broad base of hunters.

Hunters Pay for Wildlife

As NWTF CEO George Thornton put it, "The past has proven we won’t have sustainable wildlife habitat unless hunters are involved. Hunters pay for 80 percent of the budgets for state wildlife agencies that drive the research and work to restore essential habitat for game and nongame species."

To learn more about this two-pronged initiative, go to This laudable direction on the part of NWTF helps to move the entire hunting community out of the single-focus approach so prevalent in the past.

Also of note is that NWTF has reached across species-specific lines at the national level, signing a memorandum of understanding with Ducks Unlimited, Pheasants Forever and Quail Forever, all organizations that share a common vision.

This is the kind of synergistic leadership that is needed if hunting is to remain strong. Only by casting aside the parochial, competitive ways of the past and adopting the collaborative, cooperative way can we overcome the obstacles that confront us.

Partnership at Work

The Hunting & Fishing Almanac is made possible through just such collaboration. With the help of NWTF, AFC and H. T. Hackney Co., we are pleased to be able to provide this ready-reference guide on hunting and fishing for retailers to give to their customers free. This partnership results in getting the Almanac in the hands of rank and file hunters and fishermen through hundreds of stores at the local level. and Great Days Outdoors have greatly expanded the reach of the Almanac by making it available electronically.


How to Use the Almanac

The moonrise/moonset times in the Almanac can be used to determine the best times to hunt deer. According to Tom Hayes, who wrote "How to Hunt the Whitetail Deer," "Except for a brief early-morning and late-evening feeding period, the whitetail normally gets up with the moon and lies down with the moon.

"Though hunting is generally poorest at the time of the full moon and is generally best when the night is totally dark, at all times – during favorable weather – when the moon rises during the daylight hours the days will be above average for hunting while at those times when the moon rises during the hours of darkness hunting will produce below average results."

For example, the special Youth Deer Season is open Nov. 13-16 this year. Looking at the Almanac, these dates fall during a period of the new moon and, most significantly, on days when the moon rises during daylight hours and is up all day. Youth Deer Days this year should offer excellent hunting opportunity – if the weather cooperates. Take advantage of this special opportunity to introduce a kid to hunting at a prime time.

The Almanac is a 32-page, calendar-based guide to hunting and fishing seasons and regulations. The user-friendly text has proven popular with all kinds of hunters, the avid and not-so-avid. Every hunter counts the same in paying for management and protection of wildlife resources enjoyed by all of society. This is why it is so important to keep the base of hunters broad.

An additional 1,000 copies of the Almanac have been custom-printed for other businesses, such as Finchburg Grocery and Gettin’ Outdoors Radio with Big Daddy Lawler.

The corporate citizenship displayed by H. T. Hackney Co., AFC and other partners is a real asset. Keeping people hunting and fishing not only pays for putting conservation enforcement officers and biologists on the ground and in the water but it drives a huge economic engine.

Hunting amounts to a $1.8 billion economic impact annually in Alabama. Freshwater fishing adds another $780 million. The two activities are responsible for $1.7 billion in direct retail expenditures, spinning off $155 million in state and local taxes every year in Alabama.


To learn more about the role hunters play, go to

Corky Pugh is the executive director of the Hunting Heritage Foundation.

The Hunting Heritage Foundation is an Alabama non-profit organization established in 2011. To see what HHF stands for, go to the website at You can write to us at P. O. Box 242064, Montgomery, AL 36124, or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..