May 27, 2018

What We Don’t Learn From The Natural World Around Us

Two appropriate quotes attributed to Mark Twain that might stay in context with the following information are:

“I have been studying the traits and dispositions of the “lower animals” (so-called) and contrasting them with the traits and dispositions of man. I find the results humiliating to me.”

“Each race determines for itself what indecencies are. Nature knows no indecencies; man invents them.”

At my summer camp in Maine, I have a fair amount of wildlife that comes and goes and a lot that comes and doesn’t leave. Some of those that don’t leave present a bit of a problem.

I put out a couple of bird feeders because my wife and I enjoy seeing a variety of birds, some regular visitors and others very occasional. I also understand that this contributes to some of that wildlife that seems to much emulate the welfare recipient that would prefer to get free food than work for their own.

Putting out bird feeders in Maine can also attract really unwanted visitors from the forest. Black bears being one of them. I’ve not had black bears messing with my feeders but I’ve found a few droppings of scat within just a few feet of camp. I bring my feeders in at night.

The animals that present the biggest potential of nuisance are the squirrels. Gray squirrels and red squirrels come and go depending on the level of hunger and bravery. Some have figured out I will chase them off, and others don’t much care what I do. They will be back when they are ready.

It’s the chipmunks and ground squirrels that seem to be taking over. Seemingly they are quite unafraid of people. They are constantly cleaning up under the bird feeders, which I guess could be a good thing, but even as “cute” as some may think these creatures to be, they are a rodent and when winter time comes I don’t want them getting so comfortable they decide to winter in my camp or associated outbuildings.

As minor as that might seem to some, I value my property and if you’ve never had the pleasure of experiencing the damage and destruction squirrels and chipmunks can do to your house, it may not be all that minor.

There are “created indecencies” that present more of a problem than there should be. To many, they would tell me to take down my bird feeders. I know that but it will not cure completely the problem. Others might offer that I move out of the forest where my camp is and let the animals be. The lame adage being, “They were here first and I’m encroaching on them.”

Hogwash! What sat on the land New York City sits on before it became a concrete jungle? Give it rest already.

Going along with those “created indecencies,” even if I suggest “getting rid of” the chipmunks, ground, red, and gray squirrels, I would probably be threatened with my life and warned of jail sentences.

So, I try to find some sort of mediocre sharing of time and space and hope for the best when it comes to sharing my quarters with them. But there are limits to what I will put up with.

But there is a lesson to be learned here if only people would pay attention. But they don’t. Yes, there is much disappointment when comparing the “traits and dispositions” of the rodents around my camp with the animals that walk on two legs and are supposed to have the larger brains and intellect to rightfully put into place the pecking order from the man on down.

Unfortunately, this present coagulation of mislead members of society, have created their own ideas of what constitutes and indecency. Therefore, they demand that I must acquiesce to animals because they are of equal or greater importance in their existence and to hell with my property and/or my health.

Whether the human race ever fully understood the concept of the role of the man and the role of the animals, is debatable. For certain they have failed at this present time. But nature has it figured out.

While debating what I should do about the overabundance of rodents taking over my property, mostly out of fear of retribution from the animal lovers (of which they are more overabundant than the squirrels) a very natural thing happened.

I noticed one day that the chipmunks and squirrels were essentially gone – a least from immediately around my camp and buildings. What happened to them I did not know. Until…

A few days later as I came around the corner of my pump house, sunning himself in the corner of the building and the deck was a big ole garter snake looking quite fat and happy.

He jumped me at first, as you might imagine, but then I approached the snake a bit closer and began to make a pact with him. I said, “I’ll make a deal with you. I won’t bother you from being around my camp so long as you keep up the good work and keep those rodents out of here.”

The snake hung around for most the rest of the summer and then disappeared, probably eating himself out of house and home.

I have an open invitation I’ve extended to the snake as I am in need of him again.

This is all very simple.

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Secretary Zinke Proposes Expansion of Hunting and Fishing Opportunities at 30 of America’s National Wildlife Refuges

Press Release from the Department of Interior:

WASHINGTON – Continuing his efforts to increase access to public lands, U.S. Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke today announced a proposal to open more than 248,000 acres to new or expanded hunting and fishing opportunities at 30 national wildlife refuges.

Opportunities include places like Hackmatack National Wildlife Refuge in Illinois and Wisconsin, and deer hunting in Philadelphia at John Heinz National Wildlife Refuge being proposed for the first time. The proposal also outlines expanded hunting and fishing opportunities at 136 national wildlife refuges. If finalized, this would bring the number of units of the National Wildlife Refuge System where the public may hunt to 377, and the number where fishing would be permitted to 312.

“As stewards of our public lands, Interior is committed to opening access wherever possible for hunting and fishing so that more families have the opportunity to pass down this American heritage,” Zinke said. “These 30 refuges will provide incredible opportunities for American sportsmen and women across the country to access the land and connect with wildlife.”

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s (Service) proposal would open more new acres to hunting and fishing than in the past and takes steps to simplify regulations to more closely match state hunting and fishing regulations. The changes would be implemented in time for the upcoming 2018-2019 hunting seasons.

Hunting, fishing and other outdoor activities contributed more than $156 billion in economic activity in communities across the United States in 2016 according to the Service’s National Survey of Fishing, Hunting and Wildlife-Associated Recreation, published every five years. More than 101 million Americans – 40 percent of the U.S. population 16 and older – pursue wildlife-related recreation – such as hunting, fishing and birding.

“Ensuring public lands are open for multiple uses supports local economies and provides important opportunities for recreation. Further, this proposal means that families and individuals across our nation will be better able to participate in our nation’s tradition of hunting and fishing. We appreciate Secretary Zinke and the Interior Department for advancing this priority, and we will continue to work to improve access to public lands for our sportsmen,” said Senator John Hoeven.

“Public lands should be open for the public to enjoy,” said Chairman Rob Bishop of Utah. “The Department of the Interior’s latest decision to expand acreage and access for hunting and fishing on wildlife refuges was the right move. Secretary Zinke’s decision will help our economy grow and enable those who hunt and fish to spend more time catching game and less time caught in red tape.”

“North Dakota is a sportsman’s paradise. The decision to expand access to public lands by opening more than 248,000 acres across the nation to hunting and fishing will provide new economic opportunities for local communities as well as open up new areas for anglers and hunters,” said Congressman Kevin Cramer. “For the first time, the J. Clark Salyer and Lostwood National Wildlife Refuges will be open to moose hunting. I commend the Secretary’s decision and look forward to working with the department.”

“Hunters, anglers and shooting sports enthusiasts play a crucial role in funding the management and conservation of North America’s wildlife,” said Service Principal Deputy Director Greg Sheehan. “We are providing sportsmen and women with more access to our national wildlife refuges and streamlining regulations to more closely align with our state partners. And that’s good news for our customers.”

The Service manages hunting and fishing programs to ensure sustainable wildlife populations while also offering other traditional wildlife-dependent recreation on public lands, such as wildlife watching and photography. The Refuge System is an unparalleled network of 566 national wildlife refuges and 38 wetland management districts. There is a national wildlife refuge within an hour’s drive of most major metropolitan areas.

“The proposed expansion of hunting and fishing opportunities through working partnership with the states is a demonstration of Secretary Zinke’s commitment to our nation’s outdoor heritage and the conservation community,” said Virgil Moore, President of the Association of the Fish and Wildlife Agencies and Director of the Idaho Department of Fish and Game. “These efforts reaffirm the tremendous value of quality wildlife habitat and outdoor recreational opportunities, including hunting and fishing, in connecting millions of Americans to the outdoors.”

“We applaud Secretary Zinke and the Fish and Wildlife Service for their continued commitment to increasing opportunities for hunting and fishing within the National Wildlife Refuge System,” said Congressional Sportsmen’s Foundation President Jeff Crane. “We look forward to continuing to work with the Department of Interior on increasing access for sportsmen and women.”

Hunting and/or fishing will expand or be opened on the following refuges:

Arkansas

California

Florida

Illinois

Illinois and Missouri

Illinois and Wisconsin

Indiana

Maine

Maine and New Hampshire

Maryland

Michigan

Minnesota

Montana

New Jersey

New Jersey and New York

New Mexico

North Dakota

Ohio

Oregon

Pennsylvania

Utah

Wisconsin

  • Trempealeau National Wildlife Refuge: Open hunting of certain gamebirds, small mammals and furbearers for the first time, and expand existing migratory game bird and big game hunting.

The Service will seek comments from the public on the proposed rule for 30 days, beginning with publication in the Federal Register in coming days. The notice will be available at www.regulations.gov, docket no. FWS-HQ-NWRS-2018-0020, and will include details on how to submit your comments. An interim copy of the proposed rule is now available at https://www.fws.gov/home/pdfs/Proposed_2018-2019_Hunt_Fish_Rule_signed.pdf.

More than 53 million Americans visit refuges every year. National wildlife refuges provide vital habitat for thousands of species and access to world-class recreation, from fishing, hunting and boating to nature watching, photography and environmental education. In doing so, they support regional economies to the tune of $2.4 billion dollars per year and support more than 35,000 jobs.

Under the National Wildlife Refuge System Improvement Act of 1997, the Service permits hunting and fishing along with four other types of wildlife-dependent recreation, including wildlife photography, environmental education, wildlife observation and interpretation, when they are compatible with an individual refuge’s purpose and mission. Hunting, within specified limits, is currently permitted on 337 wildlife refuges and 37 wetland management districts. Fishing is currently permitted on 277 wildlife refuges and 34 wetland management districts.

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RMEF Announces New President and CEO

Press Release from the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation:

MISSOULA, Mont.—The Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation Board of Directors this week announced Kyle Weaver as the new President and CEO, effective June 30, 2018.

“It is a tremendous honor to serve as the leader of the most respected wildlife conservation organization in the country, one that does so much for elk, elk habitat and America’s hunting tradition,” said Weaver. “Moving forward, as a team, we will elevate the delivery of RMEF’s mission, including our lands and access work as well as advocating for our hunting heritage.”

Weaver comes to RMEF from a long and successful career with the National Rifle Association, where he rose from an entry level position to ultimately serve as an NRA Officer and Executive Director of General Operations. His oversight included educational, safety and training programs, grassroots fundraising, as well as hunting and conservation programs. He brings extensive experience with board relations, volunteer management and fiscal responsibility and oversight, along with program building and implementation.

“My entire career has been dedicated to protecting, promoting and supporting our rights in the outdoors as hunters and conservationists. I am excited and welcome this opportunity. I look forward to using my full energy to serve our donors, members, volunteers, partners and sportsmen and women everywhere in furthering RMEF’s conservation mission,” added Weaver.

“We are excited to have Kyle join us and look forward to his leadership as we build on the success of RMEF,” said Philip Barrett, chairman of the RMEF Board of Directors. “We want to thank DBA Executive Search & Recruitment for leading this extensive nationwide search process that yielded an incredible field of candidates.”

Larry Potterfield, a long-time friend of Kyle, lifelong hunter, author, decorated business leader and founder and CEO of Midway USA, added, “The Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation plays a critical role in the conservation of one of America’s great wildlife resources.  Its long-term success is critical for the preservation of the species and the rights of hunters. Kyle Weaver is the perfect choice to lead this great organization into the future.”

A passionate and avid hunter, Weaver has supported RMEF for well over a decade and is a life member.

Currently, the RMEF president and CEO position is held by Nancy Holland, who stepped into the role in February from her board position to facilitate the transition to the new leadership.

“I am excited for Kyle and RMEF, he brings a strong business acumen and a commitment to conservation. A powerful combination to move RMEF forward and further establish its leadership role in the conservation community,” said Holland. Upon completion of this transition, Nancy will return to her role on RMEF’s Board of Directors.

Kyle is a graduate of Longwood University in Virginia, where he attended on a collegiate baseball scholarship. Weaver is a founding board member and current Chairman of the Fathers in the Field mentoring ministry.

He, wife Ashley and their family will be relocating to Missoula.

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CDC and Firearms–By Their Numbers

From the Outdoor Wire:

“In the very first paragraph this taxpayer funded report notes gun deaths in the US are declining. Here a federal agency admits what liberal mass media news outlets will not report. And for the 26,800 plus firearms related deaths reported and recoded in 2003, the numbers reveal 16,500 were suicides. Next, only about 10,000 firearms related deaths were homicides and about 700 of the recorded deaths were unintentional, equals accidents or other.”<<<Read More>>>

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Open Thread – 22 Day, 5th Month, 2018

Morally Straight? Condoms Mandatory at Jamboree?

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There Are Fewer School Shootings Now Than During the 1990s

But…But…But…We’re All Gonna Die!

No sense in looking at any of this information. Facts are always getting in the way of agendas. Regardless, I was surprised to read this stuff.

“And when it comes to things like homicides, there is no evidence that things are getting worse. It is indeed true that things aren’t like they were “when we were kids,” but that’s a good thing. There were far more homicides in the United States during the 1980s and 1990s than there are today. Things were even worse than that during the 1970s. In fact, the homicide rate in the US was cut in half between 1991 and 2014. And while the homicide rate has inched up over the past two years, it is nowhere near where it was “when we were kids.” 

“For anyone familiar with these trends, it should not be a shock to hear that a subset of those homicides — school shootings — have decreased over that period as well. “<<<Read More>>>

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One Man Killed One Injured In Mountain Lion Attack – He Failed to “Look Big”

The insanity is fully entrenched. We’ve been convinced that we MUST coexist with such man-eating predators like mountain lions, grizzly bears, wolves, etc. and that these animals rarely bother anybody.

In this report of a man, out mountain biking in Washington State when attacked and killed by the lion, it is stated that: “People who encounter a mountain lion should not run from it, Mountain Lion Foundation officials said. Instead maintain eye contact, stand tall, look bigger by raising your arms or opening your coat, wave your arms slowly, speak firmly and throw items at the animal if necessary.

“Most cougars will move on if given the room and opportunity, according to the foundation. A person who is attacked should fight back; most people succeed in driving the big cat away.”

Who are they trying to kid anyway? “Most cougars” will move on? Right! That’s because the cat is offended by the smell of human waste as the person, who has been instructed on how to fight a cougar, just shit himself and the cat doesn’t care much for the taste of the excrement.

It is rare that a person being attacked by a mountain lion, grizzly, or wolf has the collective wherewithal to follow the instructions of looking the cat in the eye, looking big, waving your arms – slowly of course – speaking firmly, and throwing things.

And all of this for what reason? To protect the damned cat? Why? That cat is in direct conflict with the existence of these two men who got attacked and one died. Don’t you get it? You’d rather DIE, mauled to death by a vicious predator, in order to protect it? Something wrong with your head if that’s what you think.

The advice suggests to “throw items at the animal if necessary.” What? Is that like an absolute last thing? God forbid somebody throws an “item” that injures the poor cat?

Sane people, choosing to go into the woods to recreate where there are large predators, historically known to attack and kill people, regardless of what the perverted animal rights people and environMENTALists say, should go prepared to “throw items if necessary” like 240-grains of lead out the muzzle of a .44 magnum pistol.

I like living. I’ll be damned if I’ll give up that life just to protect an animal.

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Open Thread – 21st Day, 5th Month, 2018

The New “Distracterm” and Few Know What the Real “Deep State” Is. But Don’t Go Look!

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Open Thread – 19th Day, 5th Month, 2018

Distraction/Destruction: We Just Don’t Get It. We Just Don’t WANT to Get It.

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Open Thread – 18th Day, 5th Month, 2018

$80 a Barrel – Just Part of Rigged System

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