This guide will help you reduce your impact on the environment, but will not make the game any less fun. My first instructable, so constructive criticism will be welcomed. Please note that most ( maybe all ) of these pictures do not belong to me, and I take absolutely no credit for them. I just use them for instructional purposes.
Edit: thanks to shortyusa.com, airosft man and motorbreath for pictures.
Step 1: BB's and Guns
go to www.shortyusa.com and go to the bb's section. type in biodegradable and it should bring up .2 and .25 biodegradable bb's.
$17.99 will get you 4,000 .2's or 3,000 .25's
also, if you really want to minimize your impact, stop using gas guns. I konw that CO2 is a greenhouse gas, but I'm not sure about green gas, TOP gas, propane, or any of the other ones. I had previously done all the calculations, but then I hit the spellcheck button. For some reason, when I end one internet window, it ends all of them. So ending the spellcheck ended the page without saving it. Because of this, I will skip the calculation and just give you the end result. If 4,000 people use CO2 guns, and on average they use 2 cartridges per week, that ends up being about 1650 pounds of CO2 a year. Not too much on a large scale, but worth worrying about to some people. However, this is only CO2, and is probably underestimated as to the number of people who own CO2 guns.
Step 2: Your Playing Field
Many people want to have barricades and artificial cover. THere is a green way to do this, and is often very effective. If you play in the woods, there are sometimes beer kegs and other human remains (EDIT: it has been brought to my attention that this could sound a lot like human body parts. I mean to say things that people have left in the woods) laying around. My friends and I have found a beer keg, an old house ( more like a room ), part of a roof, along with other things on his horse ranch ( we play in the woods away from the horses ). You can use this as cover. Also, use green materials if you want to create some of your own. Wood works very well, and will stop a BB almost 100% of the time. the exception to the rule is that very high powered guns may pierce thin plywood. Also, if you want to create a bunker, you have two main options. You can build a "shed". this will stop BB's much more effectively than option two. If you want to insulate it for free, dig it a foot or two in the ground. otherwise, there is a type of insulation ( don't remember what it is called ) that is made of recycled denim and completely biodegradable. It is apparently also more effective at insulation, but slightly more expensive. You could also put food, weapons and ammo in there and make it either a race to the shed, or an attack and defend. If you want your food to stay cold, make sure you have a cooler that is completely sealed. then bury put it in a pit in the ground. then put a piece of wood over it. Attach a handle to the wood and cover the wood in dirt. This may sound crazy, but dirt is a natrual insulator.
Option two is like a shed, but has no roof and lower walls. It works in both a square shape and a ring/octagon shape. You can build one or two foot high walls all the way around, then dig a trench behind it to give you more to hide behind. Uses less material, and is easier to build. However, provides slightly less protection.
If you want to make it extremely natural, you can do the following to create some protection in the middle of the field instead of the "forts" listed above. Take four somewhat long sticks ( the length should be however high you want the cover to be. )
Then put them in the ground in a rectangle formation, like this
The space in between the short side of the rectangle should fit more sticks. Then simply put more sticks inside fo the rectangle lengthwise. Needs no ropes to hod it, but you may need to put something in the ground to support the sticks that are standing upright. If you do not understand the way I worded this, then message me and I will explain it to you.
Step 3: Other Small Hints.
When you reload, do not drop your clip into the ground. There are two reasons for this: A. it can damage the clip and break the spring, so it can not load anymore. and B. you can say that you will pick it up later, but in woods, that is not always a possibility. not only is it a waste of money, but you will leave the clip lying there, and they're not exactly biodegradable.
For targets, you can use soda cans and two liter bottles, along with milk jugs and other things. no matter how much they've been destroyed, these can be recycled. for guns with 300-400 FPS ( with .2g BB's ), try putting different size cardboard boxes inside of each other. This will hopefully stop the BB's for 380 FPS and up, you might want to put something of thick wood or metal inside so it completely covers the entire target. Not only will you be recycling old materials, you will be able to catch the bb's as well. A notice to my first step: while these BB's are technically biodegradable, they are only 50% so. the first 50% will degrade in a few years. the other will take a while. Even so, it does still help. This is because they are made in Japan. In Japan, anything even 50% biodegradable can be labeled as so.
Try putting pine needles, leaves, and soil on top of the wood if you have a shed on top of you bunker. This will encourage bacteria to break down the wood if you stop treating it. As long as you treat it or cover it with certain types of finish, you will be fine. But if you stop airsofting, or move a way for whatever reason, it will break down sooner. It also helps camouflage it from a distance.
If you need some cover for a sniper, dig a hole a foot or two down. Sit, crouch, or kneel in the hole, and cover yourself with dead foliage. Make sure you wear stuff over your entire body, as you will get ticks on you. This is the case no matter, how much you wear, but you can minimize this. Also, you may get the occassional spider on you, so you should carry some kind of antivenin or spider bite treatment with you. If you get bit by something, let your team know so whoever has the kit can treat you or help you with it.
Please comment, and keep in mind its my first instructable. pictures soon to come.