Deer season to open, bring businessPublished 10:44pm Monday, September 24, 2012
Big bucks will be coming to the Black Belt soon — in deer form and in green form.
As hunting season approaches, area stores have been stocking their shelves with ammunition and camouflage garb, preparing for an influx of customers.
“People travel from all over the United States to come to this little area to hunt,” said Chet Chappelle, owner of Roundtree Outdoors.
And with a boost of customers comes a boost in the economy. Chappelle said he sees a definite increase in spending in the Black Belt during hunting season because people are coming in from out of town, buying groceries and hunting materials in Selma.
“Local taxes, hotel rooms, gas, people going out to eat, people picking up little odds and ends for their camp—all these things factor in to the economy and help Selma,” Chappelle said.
Bow hunting is the first hunting season, which begins Oct. 15 and ends Jan. 31. Chappelle said he’s had a lot of customers come in to purchase new bows, gearing up for the season.
Following bow-hunting season is deer hunting, which begins Nov. 17 and ends Jan. 15.
“I see a pretty good boost in the economy when deer season comes through,” Chappelle said. “Just people preparing their land for the season, buying seeds, fertilizer, diesel fuel—it’s a pretty big impact on the economy when people get prepared for the hunting season.”
According to Alabama Black Belt Adventures, this region of Alabama that we call home—the Black Belt—provides a high-quality habitat for popular game like deer, dove and quail, because of its rich loamy soil that’s high in nutrients.
Bobby Nance, sporting goods manager for the Alabama Farmers Co-op, said he and other employees have been anticipating the season and making sure their shelves are full.
“Since we’re in the Black Belt, there’s a lot of out of town people who come in to Selma, not only just the local hunters,” Nance said.
In preparing for the season, both Chappelle and Nance recommend that hunters make sure all their weapons are working properly, and hunting licenses are updated.
“You’re in the heart of the Black Belt here in Selma,” Chappelle said. “This is the place to hunt.”