For a hunting M1A, especially if you are going to be humping it a lot and/or hunting in thick brushy areas you might consider the shorter and lighter SOCOM 16 or Scout Rifle.
I had a SOCOM 16 (16" ported bbl) and it was very quick and light - - and probably would have made an ideal rifle for hunting Florida's swamps and tree farms. The Springfield Armory "scout rifle" has an 18" bbl topped with a combo brake and flash hider. These shorter bbl's make for lighter, quicker handling rifles that should make great hunters, but it is a trade off, because it make those long range shots that much more difficult.
America is at that awkward stage. It's too late to work within the system, but too early to shoot the bastards. Claire Wolfe