LOS LUNAS, N.M. (KRQE) - A controversial coyote hunt is back on.
Now a Los Lunas gun store is organizing the event after an Albuquerque gun store gave up , but are they prepared for the backlash?
Gunhawk Firearms says people who oppose coyote hunts like the one they're organizing just don't understand what it's like to live in a rural area and want to emphasize they are helping people and the coyotes.
"Coyotes are a predator, and if you're raising livestock, I don't have to fill in the gaps there that coyotes are hard on livestock," said Josh Waters who works at Gunhawk Firearms.
It's an argument that wildlife activists have been trying to shoot down, but the Los Lunas business is picking up where Calibers Gun Store of Albuqueque left off. Gunhawk launched a coyote hunt of their own.
The prize: an assault weapon for the person who brings in the most carcasses.
"If we can help some of the local farmers and ranchers that have seen some of the hardest times in decades, then we're going to do that," added Waters.
Employees and the owner of Gunhawk is very familiar with the ranching and farming community. He said he knows first-hand how destructive coyotes can be, and employees agree those opposed to the hunt don't understand their way of living.
Calibers' Gun Shop got a massive amount of negative comments from those opposing a similar hunt on its Facebook page . That is the reason why Calibers' hunt was called off. Gunhawk is read for the condemnation.
"The idea is a win-win for us," said Waters. "We have people coming into the store and have hunters going out and helping the farmers and ranchers."
The contest is open to anyone across the state. It runs Nov. 17-18. The entry fee is $50.
One of the biggest arguments against the hunt is coyotes are only killed for their fur, but Gunhawk plans to sell the pelts and give the money to a young farmer as a scholarship.
Hunting coyotes is legal in New Mexico; no permit is necessary.
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