I work at a high school, and for the past week and a half, I've been hearing stories from the younger students (freshman) about their deer hunting efforts. There seem to be two strikingly different scenarios.
Scenario 1) Kids come in to school excited about weekend or previous day. They tell about the nice deer they got. I ask about the hunt and where they went (I'm not going to steal anyone's spot, I just want them to know I take an interest) and who they went with. The successful kids typically went hunting with their dads. One specific example is a 14-year old (who looks more like 12) who shot a 10-point buck that he said they figured was about 200 pounds. He had brought a picture, and, posing with the very nice deer, were the kid and his dad, both looking very excited.
Scenario 2) Kids come into school and tell about the nice deer they shot but couldn't find. In one case, the kid took a long shot with a 22-250 at a big buck. He thought he hit it but never found it. Another kid thought he shot a doe. It turned out to be a spike buck that he didn't have a tag for. Worst was a kid who told me his hunting partner went up to downed deer and kicked it in the head before finishing it off with a knife. When I ask about the details of these kids' outings, they tend to be out hunting with peers rather than parents or other experienced hunters.
I don't mean to imply that young hunters can't go out and enjoy hunting with other young hunters. Also, I'm sure some older hunter aren't always good role models either. But overall, there seems to be very obvious trend that those kids who get their start under the tutelage of their dad or some other experienced hunter not only tend to be more successful, but will generally grow up to be more responsible and ethical sportsman down the road.
I realize this is no big news bulletin, but I just had to rant a little.