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Hunting is the pursuit and killing of animals for food, clothing, sport, or other purposes.

The term usually is not used to refer to the pursuit of fish, which is known as fishing, the capture of animals using a trap, which is known as trapping, nor the raising and killing of animals on farms.

Modern hunting is usually either bowhunting with a bow and arrow, or gun hunting with a rifle or shotgun. Primitive hunters used such tools as slings and spears, or a simple longbow. Modern bowhunters use technically advanced equipment such as the compound bow.

Animals hunted for sport are often referred to as 'game animals' or 'game'. In modern times hunting is regulated including the licensing of hunters, specified hunting seasons for each species, and strict limits on the number of animals one is permitted to take per season or per day. Often special stamps or tags are required for some species in addition to the regular hunting license. In addition, at least in the United States, certain animals are specifically forbidden from being hunted, such as any nursing does or any fawns. Poaching is the illegal act of hunting in violation of these laws, such as hunting out of season or more than the legal limit, or in some cases hunting specific animals that are explicitly forbidden from being hunted in account of them being young or otherwise nursing. The legal limit is often called the 'bag limit'. Some people on the leftist side of the political spectrum feel that hunting for sport should be regulated far more than it is, or possibly banned entirely on the grounds that it damages wildlife. It has been pointed out before though, that large amounts of money made in the game industry go to environmental conservation, and without hunting, they would have very little money to fund their efforts. Hunting is also a multimillion-dollar business that puts money in the hands of many purveyors of hunting supplies.

Different types of hunting can refer to the different types of species hunted. These include big game such as elk, bear, moose, and deer; small game such as rabbits and squirrels; game birds such as grouse and pheasant; and waterfowl such as ducks and geese. There also exist different methods of hunting, such as hunting in place from a tree stand, or hunting on foot which involves the skills of tracking and stalking.

Hunting has also been proven genetic in humans as well as dogs, predatory mammals, and birds of prey.

See also