Hot pink in the forest? You bet.
Wisconsin became the first and so far only state to legalize fluorescent pink as an alternative to traditional blaze orange for hunters. Governor Scott Walker signed the law on February 4.
Blaze pink is growing in popularity as the number of female hunters increases nationwide.
Wisconsin – and many other states – are welcoming new female hunters to make up for shrinking overall sales of big game tags and hunting licenses. In 2014 Wisconsin sold the lowest number of deer licenses in 38 years.
No other state has legalized blaze pink for hunting, according to the National Assembly of Sportsmen’s Caucuses.
The move did not come without some controversy, however, as the Women’s Hunting and Sport Association called the bill sexist.
According to the Green Bay Press Gazette, while female hunters currently comprise only 10 percent of the Wisconsin’s adult deer hunters, almost a quarter of 10 to 12 year old beginning hunters are female.
The legislation leaned heavily on research done by University of Wisconsin-Madison professor Majid Sarmadi – a “color scientist” — suggesting that humans can see blaze pink as well or better than blaze orange. Sarmadi even said that blaze pink makes more effective camouflage because deer cannot see pink as well as orange.
Don’t expect men to rush out to buy pink camo, but pink outdoor apparel is already a major seller for women, with pink hunting lines available from virtually every producer of outdoor clothing.
“While time will tell if adding blaze pink to the allowable clothing for deer hunters will encourage increased interest in hunting among women, we hope that it will signal that we recognize and appreciate female involvement in the deer hunt,” said the legislation’s author, Representative Joel Kleefisch (R-Oconomowoc).
Photo credit: CBS58