Doing one's part on family hunting property

Thread starter #1

BeerThirty

Senior Member
As you all know, hunting properties require a lot of work. There's always something needing to be done, I think you get the point...

I recently found out that my father-in-law no longer desires to allow my brother to hunt on his property because he has not been pulling his weight with helping out. You see, I asked my FIL several years ago for permission for my brother to hunt with us, and he has been a key member of our deer camp ever since.

However, the problem is that my FIL has asked my brother for help with certain things over the years, and he always seems to make up an excuse. I live 1,000 miles away from deer camp and I have done more than my brother who lives 10 minutes down the road. I digress...

My dilemma here is that I believe once my FIL makes his intentions known to my brother, it going to upset him. Knowing my brother, he's going to rationalize all the reasons why he couldn't be a bigger help and somehow play victim. The worst part is, it's going to indirectly cause a rift between he and I, despite the fact that it's not my property and I had nothing to do with the decision.

Since my brother has hunting rights on behalf of me, do you think I should speak to my brother about this to soften the blow and hopefully change his behavior? Or do you think I should play neutral and let him hear it from my FIL since it's his property and his decision?

Also, I know getting people to help on hunting property is a pretty common issue, so also curious how others deal with it.
 

Rich M

Senior Member
Sometimes folks need to be told upfront what is expected. This might not have been done clearly but you figured it out and your brother didn't.

Tough spot - he really must have irritated the old man.

Talk to your uncle and see if you can get him a second chance and then make it clear - no workee, no hunting.
 

krizia829

Senior Member
I'd say you should speak to your FIL first and see what his intentions are directly coming from him, AND THEN speak to your brother on his behalf. Since it involves family, it's better to avoid any sort of problem or confrontation if possible. If it was just some guy you guys know then I say forget it, let him figure it out but family is different. Just my .02.. Good luck!
 
My opinion is that you should allow the landowner, your FIL, to tell your brother. I Don't think your brother knowing ahead of the "announcement" is a plus for anyone. It could(?) cause him to "simmer" and say some things that might be regretful for all involved.

Please note that I do not mean to insinuate that your brother is anything but a fine man. But I do believe it might be human nature to allow that bad news, forewarned by you, to promote a response he might not make if he simply is told by your FIL, end of story.

Good luck.
 
Thread starter #6

BeerThirty

Senior Member
Sometimes folks need to be told upfront what is expected. This might not have been done clearly but you figured it out and your brother didn't.

Tough spot - he really must have irritated the old man.

Talk to your uncle and see if you can get him a second chance and then make it clear - no workee, no hunting.
That's kind of where I'm at. I feel like a grown man shouldn't have to be told to return the favor, so to speak. However, I don't want to risk creating drama between the family, especially around hunting season. And I really enjoy having my brother around at deer camp, so I don't want to jeopardize that.
 
Thread starter #8

BeerThirty

Senior Member
The other part here is that my brother has really complained a lot more to me (not my FIL) about his dissatisfaction with his hunting spot on the property. He's not the immediate family, so he's low man on the totem pole and gets last choice for hunting spot. So whether or not there's a connection here, perhaps my brother is not as inclined to help out because he doesn't feel like he's benefiting much anyway.. ?
 

Crakajak

Daily Driveler News Team
I would suggest to have a conversation with all parties involved for the future and address work days at the farm and any other issues that are involved. Communication is key before things get ugly and emotions run high and you are forced to chose between your brother and your wifes father.NOBODY will win.
It is the FIL land. He has to tell everyone what is expected in return for hunting his land.
 

4HAND

Senior Member
The other part here is that my brother has really complained a lot more to me (not my FIL) about his dissatisfaction with his hunting spot on the property. He's not the immediate family, so he's low man on the totem pole and gets last choice for hunting spot. So whether or not there's a connection here, perhaps my brother is not as inclined to help out because he doesn't feel like he's benefiting much anyway.. ?
Is he hunting for free?
 

JustUs4All

Sweeper Upper Mod
If he is hunting for free, you put yourself in the middle when you interceded on his behalf to bhave him included in the first place.

Since you are in the middle, you need to find out exactly what your FIL wants to happen. Then you need to find out exactly what your Bro wants to happen.

If FIL is fed up and wants your Bro out then tell Bro it is over. If FIL just wants Bro to work his share then tell Bro and let him know that failure to comply would loose the hunting spot.

IF Bro thinks he is getting the short end of the stick, reassure him that:
1. He is but he is still getting some of the stick.
2. If it weren't for your intercession he would not be getting any of the stick.
3. Will not allow this situation to interfere with your relationship with your FIL.
4. If he is not happy with things he should find another place.

This is written from the viewpoint of your FIL which, in my situation, I understand all too well.
 

Milkman

Retired Moderator
Let me make sure I read this correctly. He lives 10 minutes away and won’t help with work on the hunting land. Work that the owner asked him to do?

If I understand it correctly.....From my perspective I would not allow such a person to be a part anymore either.
I think if it were your son-in-laws brother you would probably do the same.
 

Crakajak

Daily Driveler News Team
The other part here is that my brother has really complained a lot more to me (not my FIL) about his dissatisfaction with his hunting spot on the property. He's not the immediate family, so he's low man on the totem pole and gets last choice for hunting spot. So whether or not there's a connection here, perhaps my brother is not as inclined to help out because he doesn't feel like he's benefiting much anyway.. ?
Unless it is a 10,000 acre or larger farm your brother is whining.
Free access to hunting a great area is a rarity these days and very hard to find.No one is forcing him to hunt there. Maybe he can find somewhere else to hunt.
 

MikeyD6

Senior Member
In your heart of hearts, who do you think is more in the wrong in this situation? I sense from your description of your brother that he may be slightly irresponsible. Just my impression, right or wrong. On the other hand, do you feel like he's truly being treated like a second class citizen out there? Is everyone else scoring good deer and he's getting nothing? Is your FIL asking him to do unreasonable things? If I were you I'd get it straight in my head before I spoke to either of them.
 
Sounds like you father in law is tired of giving to someone who expects the gift instead of being grateful.

I recommend you make it known to your father in law that you support his decision, and reiterate your appreciation for hunting there. You should feel comfortable in your own skin that if it weren't for you, your brother would not have gotten free hunting all these years. I don't see how he could possibly be mad at you. Hopefully this will be a life lesson to your brother.
 
Thread starter #18
If he is hunting for free, you put yourself in the middle when you interceded on his behalf to bhave him included in the first place.

Since you are in the middle, you need to find out exactly what your FIL wants to happen. Then you need to find out exactly what your Bro wants to happen.

If FIL is fed up and wants your Bro out then tell Bro it is over. If FIL just wants Bro to work his share then tell Bro and let him know that failure to comply would loose the hunting spot.

IF Bro thinks he is getting the short end of the stick, reassure him that:
1. He is but he is still getting some of the stick.
2. If it weren't for your intercession he would not be getting any of the stick.
3. Will not allow this situation to interfere with your relationship with your FIL.
4. If he is not happy with things he should find another place.

This is written from the viewpoint of your FIL which, in my situation, I understand all too well.
Yup, that is why I feel I need to do something here. I think your suggestions are all very reasonable for both parties. The only thing I fear is #4. If my bro decides to go somewhere else, I'm the one who loses out on hunting with my brother, and that would really disappoint me. However, I hope that feeling would be mutual and a good reason for him to comply.
 
Thread starter #19
Let me make sure I read this correctly. He lives 10 minutes away and won’t help with work on the hunting land. Work that the owner asked him to do?

If I understand it correctly.....From my perspective I would not allow such a person to be a part anymore either.
I think if it were your son-in-laws brother you would probably do the same.
You are correct. The main tasks he's been asked to help with are keeping trails and property mowed with the brush hog and chainsaw. Easy work. Hook up to ATV and be done in an hour. Keep entry way and garage landing clear of debris, leaves and sticks. Go inside cabin and just do a visual inspection to make sure everything is okay, mousetraps and fly strips disposed and refreshed. That's honestly about it.
 
Thread starter #20
In your heart of hearts, who do you think is more in the wrong in this situation? I sense from your description of your brother that he may be slightly irresponsible. Just my impression, right or wrong. On the other hand, do you feel like he's truly being treated like a second class citizen out there? Is everyone else scoring good deer and he's getting nothing? Is your FIL asking him to do unreasonable things? If I were you I'd get it straight in my head before I spoke to either of them.
I personally feel that it's all my brother. Yes, he is generally a lazy person, no sense of urgency and only likes to help if there's something in it for him. But I still love him and enjoy hunting with him.

Now, while he his low man on the totem pole and complains about his spot, it's not because he's not allowed to hunt elsewhere. My opinion is that he's lazy and doesn't want to put in the effort to find a better spot or utilize a section of the property that is a pain in the rear to get to...

I firmly believe that my FIL is being extremely generous and reasonable, but I think it's the compilation of a few years of getting no help from my bro that has boiled this one up...
 
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