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In an online server, Hunting animals is not a reliable food source because of the following reasons:

  1. Hunting animals requires ammunition, killing them may take several headshots and animals tend to move a lot when they get shot at. In an online survival server, ammunition is typically limited and difficult to come by when there are survivors and hostile players looking for them.
  2. Animal spawn points are often guarded by Survivor Group Bases. Some player groups tend to build their base near or at animal spawn points due to the potential food supply and flat open area. When the base inhabitants see you hunting an animal or hear your gunshots, they won’t think twice about shooting you and looting your corpse.
  3. It may take a while to track down an animal that has run away from you. If you can, try to chase it as long as possible. Take note that animals can't run forever and stop after a few seconds.

However, in Singleplayer hunting animals is not a bad option and some NPC quests require ingredients from an animal.

Tips and Tricks:

When hunting animals, the following weapons/methods are good choices:

  • Rifle – The Makeshift Rifle only uses Civilian Ammunition which is very easy to find or you can craft its ammo case with 6 Metal Scrap. Its Magazine holds up to 5 rounds, slightly higher recoil than Hawkhound. Range varies with the type of rifle. 225m for Pine, 200m for Maple, and 175m for Birch. Makeshift Rifle degrades faster than most weapons but can take out any animal with a single headshot.
  • Hawkhound – Like the Makeshift Rifle, it also uses Civilian Ammunition but its ammo can’t be crafted unlike the Makeshift Rifle, though it holds up to 8 rounds in every magazine. The Hawkhound has a good range up to 200 meters and is accurate, which is good in taking out animals

over longer ranges.

  • Bows and CrossbowsAmmo can be crafted with nails and sticks, can inflict high damage but needs to reload every shot and its ammo takes up a lot of space, is silent, has a good range of 200m and its ammo can be retrieved. Interestingly, even though bow weapons are silent nearby animals still flee when an animal in their close vicinity is killed.
  • Vehicles— it only needs Gas, Battery, Tires, and a driver. They can be found throughout the map with the Gas, Battery, and Tires on. Accuracy depends on its driver, but can one-hit kill any animal.
  • BluntforceAmmo can be found at police locations, it has a decent capacity for a shotgun, fires 12 pellets, and commonly spawns. However it has a relatively short range and takes up a lot of space in your inventory, which may make it hard to fill your inventory with Leather, Raw Venison or other animal produce.
  • MasterkeyAmmo can be found at campgrounds and farms, and can inflict a massive amount of damage towards the target if all or most of the pellets hit. It is chambered in 20 Gauge Shells which can be found at the same locations as the Masterkey. While its high damage, fast fire rate, and fast reload do sound appealing, it has some downsides, such as having a very short range, low ammo capacity, being very loud and only accepting tactical attachments.
  • Sawed-off — Ammo is the same as the Masterkey as this is just the Masterkey but sawed-off, however it’s range is smaller.
  • Sneak attacks with melee weapons — If the player has invested in melee and stealth skills, you can rather easily sneak up on passive animals and kill them with one power attack to the head, provided that you have a decent melee weapon and/or sufficient perk investment.

Tips & Tricks for Hunting:

Find an area in which animals spawn:

Optionally, you can place traps around the animal spawns, although placing too many traps will reduce the spawn chance of the animals. This means that fleeing animals may run over the trap, aiding in hunting groups of animals. Another possibility is to get the animals to run into corners, making them easy pickings.

You can also fence the spawn area, making hunting considerably easier.