More than ever before, the ranks of hunters in the United States are being swelled by women. So it should come as little surprise that many of the ladies you may be familiar with both in Hollywood and Billboard Top 100 are already hunters themselves.
Surveys have shown that the number of women hunters has climbed steadily since the 1980s, but truly began to boom over in just the last few years. Below are seven female celebrities you may not have known were hunters. Some of them have been quite vocal about their support for the activity, while others have taken a vow of silence over the “controversy” that their hunting has caused.
1. Eva Longoria
Raised on a ranch in Corpus Christi, Texas, it was only natural for Longoria to learn how to hunt and fish. According to People Magazine, this actress began handling firearms as young as age four and was soon after chasing after deer, turkey, quail, wild pigs, and just about anything else that can be hunted in Texas. For her love of hunting, Longoria was put on PETA’s “Worst-dressed” celebrities list of 2008 and sharply criticized for her knowledge of how to field-dress game.
“We didn’t do it for cruelty,” she later told Digital Spy. “That’s how we had dinner! We skinned our dinner.”
Longoria is now a successful actress, producer, activist, and businesswoman. She is perhaps best known for her role on the TV show Desperate Housewives and films such as The Sentinel.
2. Madonna (Madonna Louise Ciccone)
The Queen of Pop needs no introduction. Guinness World Records currently recognizes the singer-songwriter as the best-selling female recording artist of all time, yet few may know that Madonna spends some of her free time hunting pheasants. In fact, the Michigan native once held pheasant hunts near her estate when she was married to Guy Ritchie, who was also known for being an avid sportsman. That quickly stopped after an outcry from animal rights groups.
3. Eliza Dushku
You may recognize this actress from her roles in Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Dollhouse, or True Lies. Dushku may be most notable for her activism, especially when it comes to helping former child soldiers readjust to a normal life, but she is also an avid elk hunter. However, she has vowed to never speak about the activity again after animal rights activists reportedly compared her to Jeffrey Dahmer and called her a “serial killer” of animals.
4. Avril Lavigne
This singer-songwriter was raised near the small town of Napanee in Ontario, and may owe her fame in part to hunting. According to Entertainment Weekly, the fact that she hunted and loved to do so—at 14—is part of why her first manager decided to take a chance on her.
”When I first saw her, I liked her voice, and obviously the looks,” Cliff Fabri told EW. “But it was the attitude. She goes hunting all the time with her brother and dad.”
5. Jennifer Lawrence
After the release of The Hunger Games, you must have wondered if this actress ever did a little bit of hunting on her own. As it turned out, she does. In fact, Lawrence was trained by none other than five-time US Olympic archer Khatuna Lorig and her favorite game is actually squirrel. While she may not have the pinpoint aim of Katness Everdeen, her character in The Hunger Games, Lorig said that Lawrence was an easy student to teach and has a good eye.
You can see a video of Lawrence hunting deer on the big screen below:
6. Kate Middleton (Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge)
As part of the British Royal Family, Middleton is certainly expected to hunt. The Duchess of Cambridge broke her teeth on the royal hunting traditions when she accompanied members of the family for a hunt in the Scottish Highlands several years ago. The British press quickly pounced on the news and organizations like PETA were as equally quick to criticize her participation.
“Kate is obviously trying to endear herself to the Royal Family, which is absolutely appalling,” PETA’s Yvonne Taylor told the Daily Mail.
That did not stop Middleton from attending more hunts, especially for pheasants.
7. Miranda Lambert
This country music star has hardly made a secret of her hunting, especially when her husband Blake Shelton is involved. Lambert has appeared in both outdoors television and print, and even served venison that she harvested herself at her wedding.
Have we missed anybody? Let us know in the comments.