Ammunition Shortages Impacting Hunters Across Louisiana
Louisiana residents have embraced a love of the outdoors since long before we bothered to build an indoors. Hunting, fishing, trapping, are all in our DNA and flow through our veins like swamp water in a rain-soaked bayou. However many of our state's residents who love to spend a cool crisp morning in the woods in a deer stand are finding they are lacking one key component of a successful hunt.
That's right unless you're going to throw your rifle at a deer or maybe hit him with your boot you could find your trips to the woods this winter limited not by personal obligations but because you don't have any bullets for your gun.
The ammunition crunch is not a new thing. In other words, it didn't just manifest as deer season began to open across the state. Hunters from across Louisiana and the nation have been buying up whatever boxes of shells and ammo they could lay their hands on for the past six months or so.
This has left many retailers with empty shelves and many hunters with empty chambers in their weapons. The blame for the ammo shortage has been placed squarely upon supply chain issues. One Slidell gunshop owner told a New Orleans TV station that "they've bought it all".
What's especially hard to come by is steel shot. Federal and statewide mandates on the use of non-toxic ammunition for waterfowl have really affected the supply in this regard. There are stiff penalties for not only hunting with lead-based ammunition but you can get into trouble with the law just for having it in your possession.
Many states do require non-toxic shots for deer hunting too but Louisiana is not one of those states. So, when you throw in state and federal regulations, a supply chain issue, and thousands of Louisiana residents who can't wait to get out into the woods it's pretty easy to see why the shelves at gun shops are looking empty and the deer are breathing a little easier in the woods.
Now, we don't want to offer you a picture of total doom and gloom when it comes to ammunition. The retailers that we've talked to over the past few days say their phones have been ringing with people looking for specific products. Many of the more popular products are either sold out or in short supply but ever-resourceful hunters are finding other methods and other ways to satisfy their itch for getting out into the woods.
Meanwhile, there appears to be no immediate end to the supply chain crisis, however, plans are in place to get some of those supply ships stuck off the West Coast of the United States into port sooner than later. Still, even if it all opened all the way up tomorrow it would still take several weeks, if not months for those supplies to make their way to retail shops across the country.
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