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Alternative Ways of Hunting in Ontario

So in Ontario you can hunt using the following methods:

  • Firearm
  • Bowhunting
  • Crossbow
  • Spearhunting

But there are other ways of hunting that are, shall we say, a little unusual.

For example there is the Stone Crossbow (or Pellet Crossbow) which shoots a marble sized pebble (traditional made of ceramic so they were an uniform size and weight). That still falls into the category of being a crossbow.

Likewise there is also the Stone Bow (or Pellet Bow), which works on the same principle. Shown below is a traditional Paraguayan Pellet Bow.

It is basically a giant slingshot.

Another option is slingshots, which I personally find to be silly, but whatever.

There is also the sling, which is an ancient weapon that can be incredible powerful and accurate in the hands of a person who regular trains with it. (Goliath actually didn't stand a chance against David, as the sling is actually a very powerful weapon. It doesn't look like much, but the amount of kinetic energy it can release is actually pretty impressive.)

Ballista and Windlass Crossbows...

So check out the video below of a man shooting a 1,250 lb windlass crossbow. Like you, I also went "1250 lbs? What?!" but then I saw how thick the steel bow on that crossbow was and I realized, wow. I had no clue they could be that powerful.

Ontario Hunting Laws and Legal Grey Zones

So there are specific laws in Ontario governing what you can hunt with and what you cannot.

For example, if hunting with a crossbow, you must use a crossbow with a minimum of 150 lbs of force.

So that 1,250 lb windlass crossbow definitely is strong enough, but it also means there is no limit on how powerful the crossbow could be.

You could technically hunt in Ontario with 2,500+ lb ballista that shoots giant spears, and it would be totally legal.

And that is what I mean by "legal grey zones". There is no law expressly forbidding the use of ballista.

Just like there is no laws forbidding the use of Stone Crossbows, Stone Bows and various other types of unusual weapons that fall into the classification of an approved type of hunting tool. For example a slingshot can be modified to shoot arrows like a bow, thus it is basically classified as a bow.

Even though I am not a fan of slingshots, whatever, it counts.

Spearhunting, harpoons, atlatl throwers for throwing spears or darts, blowguns, spear-guns, gas-powered crossbows, harpoon guns, and more.

So for example...

You could go bowhunting, but instead of a regular arrow be shooting a giant arrow roughly the size of a spear. Does it count as an arrow or as a spear?

Upsetting the Vegans with "Primitive" Hunting Tools

Now the problem within all this is the animal lovers who hate everything to do with hunting, and if it were up to them they would ban bowhunting, spearhunting and indeed ban all forms of hunting and fishing. There is no pleasing people who are diametrically opposed to something.

So to the anti-hunters, the idea that someone could build their own ballista and go hunting with it really sticks in their craw. To them that is a reason to write angry letters to the government, to protest, to harass people via email and twitter, etc.

In various parts of the USA vegans have been trying to ban bowhunting for example, arguing that it is less accurate than firearms, and arguing that guns are more humane. (I would argue the opposite honestly. I have seen some people shoot and firearms are actually horribly inaccurate, or at least the people shooting them are horribly inaccurate.)

Mankind has been hunting with bows and spears for tens of thousands of years. It was perfectly adequate and accurate back then, and it is perfectly accurate and adequate now - more so in fact, thanks to modern materials and designs that increase both accuracy and penetrating power.

More so, traditional or "primitive" archery actually surprises researchers who study the effectiveness of such weapons.

Flint for example is actually harder than steel, and flint arrowheads are sharper than any razor honed steel arrowheads you can find. In tests flint arrowheads actually cut deeper than any steel arrowheads you can purchase. (Don't believe me, go browse YouTube.)

Fun Trivia Fact - The reason why flint and steel make a spark is because the flint is taking off tiny pieces of the steel, thus forming a hot spark that can be used for starting a fire.

So-called "primitive" weapons are far more powerful and accurate than people give them credit for.

So when vegans see someone hunting with a longbow with flint arrowheads, they look at that and think "Oh we need to ban that!" But their reasoning isn't sound because they are ignorant of the fact that flint arrowheads are actually very efficient for killing deer.

Anthropologist Comment - So my wife, the anthropologist/lawyer, would probably also want me to point out that using the word "primitive" is actually racist, because it implies that other cultures are more savage and lack technology. This is why I have been using the word "primitive" with quotations around it, because I wanted to bring up this topic of how people should stop using that word primitive in a derogatory way.

So when a vegan says that a certain hunting tool is "primitive", they are actually being derogatory and racist.

Ever noticed how most vegans are white? Well, I have.

Sure, a lot of them are also liberal-minded and would deny being racist, but I do believe that racists come in all kinds.

Vegans often believe they have a moral superiority and think that gives them the right to be elitist snobs. This then results in a horrible habit of them looking down on other cultures, people who prefer other kinds of food, and claiming to have some superior vision of how people should eat.

Except it is all nonsense.

They don't have any moral superiority. Half of them are wearing leather clothing and shoes. They're hypocrites.

Not all vegans are crazy people flouting their assumed superiority. I have met a few who are actually very nice people. Sure, they try to introduce me to new veggie dishes, but they don't push their beliefs on me.

Sadly those vegans are few and far between.

So here is the thing. If you find a new way to hunt using a hunting tool that is within a legal grey zone. Keep it to yourself! Don't go blabbing about it on the internet. You are only going to upset vegans and get them protesting outside the Ontario Legislature.

Personally I like the Ontario hunting laws just fine. Just the right amount of vagueness so that people can interpret what counts as a bow or crossbow or spear.

I see nothing wrong with an individual wanting to hunt with a ballista. Nobody is going to claim that deer or moose didn't die quickly and humanely when hit by a ballista bolt. A ballista would kill the moose AND the moose standing behind it with ease. A 2-for-1.

So lets not advertise that Joe Smith is hunting with his ballista. I think it is awesome, but the vegans will get their panties in a knot.


Yes, there are alternative ways to hunt in Ontario. Don't think of what is allowed as restrictions. Just use some imagination and you can see how the vagueness is actually an indication of what is allowed.

For example nobody said you can't hunt using a portable cannon or a "Punt Gun". Are Punt Guns ridiculous? Sure, they are. But good luck claiming that the ducks being shot weren't killed humanely. (Punt Guns were traditionally used for hunting flocks of ducks, killing a whole flock of ducks at once. But they could in theory be used for bear hunting or moose.)

This is actually a small Punt Gun.

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