My high school science teacher was confident that years down the road, humans would no longer have an outer ear. He reasoned that evolution would eliminate the outer ear as the need for them is slowly but surely
going away.

I guess when you think about it, it is possible. The outer ear serves as a trap to catch sound and funnel it to the inner ear. With the
distance between you and your neighbor shrinking, it is not hard to catch the sound, so theoretically, you would not have to have an outer

Eye site could do the same I suppose. We certainly do not have to use our eyes for survival like our ancestors did.

In fact, individuals without the benefit of sight, have become an integral part of our society, not without battles, mind you. However,as
recently as a couple hundred years ago, they would have been considered outcast and maybe even eliminated.

The point is that vision is not mandatory for survival and limited short distance vision is used more often than not.

As I sit glued in front of this screen, it becomes obvious that I seldom look at distant objects and therefore have a harder time doing

A buddy of mine told me once that he works at focusing on things at a distance. His thinking was he could save his eyesight this way. I
laughed it off, he wears glasses now. We can not stop the inevitable, but his idea I think was a good one. Practicing with our focus on
distant objects can enhance our hunting trips.

I don't think my lifestyle is that much different than most. Sure there are some who hunt a lot more, maybe live out of town or whatever, but
most of us seldom look very far or have to focus on distant objects on a daily basis. This presents a challenge for us when we walk into a
hunting area. We have to forget how we go through our daily lives and play a whole different ball game.

How many times have you sat in the timber and felt confident that you were being watched, or at least that something was there in the woods
with you? No matter how hard you tried, you could not spot anything. I catch myself scanning the hunting area, and not really focusing on
anything. Then I have to stop and take the time to really look hard and focus.

As a coyote hunter, I become the hunted as soon as I blow on a call. I have no doubt in my mind that the eyes looking for me are much better
than my own. If you think of how detailed for instance, this text appears in front of you, surely a game animal must see the woods in a
similar way. They must see more detail in order to survive.

In the late 80's I killed a nice doe, but spotting her about killed me. I watched her walk into the timber 75 yards away from me and quartering
my direction. She closed the gap to about 60 yards and stopped. That reads vanished ! Peering through my 3x9 (set on 4x), I could find
nothing. I was certain she was right there, so I kept working at it. Finally, I spotted her nose and then her chest. She had turned directly toward me and stopped. My heart was in my throat, my arms were tired of
holding the rifle as the cross hairs settled on her chest. I squeezed the trigger and she vanished, again. I froze, watching for her to bolt,
but feeling confident that I had hit her. Dead silence and 20 minutes waiting, I walked to where she had been standing; there she laid. When
she fell, she dropped just behind a little rise in the ground and I simply could not see her from my angle, not even with binoculars.

That deer taught me a valuable lesson or two. First and foremost, if you feel you are being watched, you probably are. She knew I was there
but I did not move enough for her to spook as I raised my rifle. Second, when we think of hunting, we picture our target game animal.
Unfortunately, we seldom see the entire animal all at once. Since that experience, I have worked harder at looking for different parts of the
animal and it works.

Scanning your hunting area with the naked eye, you can watch for horizontal lines, color variations, eyes and noses. A twitch of an ear
or tail may be your only clue that you have company. Just because you do not see any further movement does not mean your alone.

Bill Wade

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Last Modified: Tuesday, January 3, 2012 7:29 AM