A photographer in Maine loves to take pictures of moose. I assume for profit, although his letter to the editor doesn’t exactly admit that. And that’s okay too. He has that right to exploit wildlife for profit – within the laws of course just as the rest of us do. And, I’ve seen some of his photography and it’s quite good. He also has a strange way of thanking the real conservationists – hunters – for assisting in his enjoyment of seeing a moose in the wild, as he writes: “It is a thrill unmatched to see a mature bull moose, amidst the brilliant colors of autumn in New England, up close, living life, chasing cows, battling rivals and splashing across a beautiful mountain pond into the mystical Katahdin woods.” Who could argue with that?
The author suggests that hunting is limiting the chances for people to be able to see moose, as he describes above, and that hunting of moose should be stopped so that he can make even more money by exploiting the resource for selfish gain. Why is it that the Left seems bent on propping up their selfish desires at the expense of destroying it for others?
The author also suggests that Mother Nature would aptly provide him and anyone else with such desires to moose watch, more so than employment of the North American Model of Wildlife Management – a scientific approach to wildlife management that has proven itself to be the envy of the planet AND providing photographers and others the opportunity to glimpse all wildlife in a mostly natural setting. Of course due to the author’s ignorance of things, he fails to understand the concept nor see the realities, while thinking only of himself.
Maine is probably experiencing a sample of what a “natural balance of nature” might look like as we witness thousands of moose dying each year due to the winter tick, an infestation that I believe, and can be supported by science, is caused by Maine’s attempt at growing too many moose. Part of that attempt to grow too many moose can be attributed to people, just like the author of this opinion piece, who want to view moose and take pictures and pressure the government to fulfill their wants.
I doubt the author understands that what makes his expressed love of seeing a bull moose in front of a backdrop of Autumn colors, doing what moose do, of value, is that it is not something everyone can do anytime they have a whim. Doesn’t the real value come from the total experience which includes a certain degree of rarity in finding such a treasure? What becomes of this value when moose are ignored and to grow as nature decides, the result being needlessly dying animals from disease and parasites? A lack of knowledge causes the author to believe hunting, as part of a scientific approach to moose management, is limiting his opportunity to view and photograph moose, i.e. to obtain his own trophy. He fails to understand that Mother Nature doesn’t manage for his desires either but provides periods of ups and downs, disease and suffering. Surely man doesn’t want to see this. We have brains to use to figure it out. Why can’t we manage for ample for everyone and their wants and desires?
Yes, moose hunters enjoy hunting moose as much as someone might enjoy taking a picture. The value of the moose hunt is increased by a greater effort to find success in the same way a photographer has to work harder to get that trophy photograph. Perhaps the difference in the two comparisons is that the hunter, while they might be disappointed, would approve and understand if survival of the moose required a stop to hunting. Would the photographer have the same understanding if the state had to stop causing moose to suffer by artificially growing too many moose and bring the population down to healthy and yet sustainable numbers?
My suggestion to this photographer is the next time he sees a hunter, thank them for the hundreds, perhaps thousands of dollars, they personally have spent, to ensure that he can still go to Baxter State Park in hopes of photographing a bull moose doing what bull moose do.
I wonder what the photographer has done to perpetuate the conservation of wildlife? Perhaps he could begin by first learning the truth of what the North American Model of Wildlife Management is all about.