November 15, 2019

Pretty in Pink? Or, An Amish Meeting Has Begun?

*Editor’s Note* – I must apologize for the gross error that I made when I wrote this article. Whether it was old age or just laziness and stupidity, I referred to the group in Maine who lobbied for an exemption to wearing hunter orange clothing as the Quakers. I have written more than one article in the past year about this event and in those articles, I correctly referred to the group as the Amish, not the Quakers. I have gone through the below article and changed the name of Quaker to Amish. I apologize if I have offended some. It was not my intention. Thank you. (2/1/18 9:30 a.m.) Find previous articles here, here, here, here.

I knew it only a matter of time before a ridiculous law the State of Maine passed allowing a group of Amish, who say they can’t wear bright clothing, don’t have to wear Hunter Orange as is required by law, before other groups would jump in making demands of what kind and/or color clothing they prefer to wear while hunting.

Maine, even though it decided that the reason the state requires Hunter Orange clothing is for safety, got trumped by a stupid request from a tiny bunch of Amish seeking an exemption from wearing the “bright colored” clothing.

Now it appears that in Michigan a bill has been introduced that will allow anyone, not just women (after all it is difficult to tell the difference these days), to wear blaze pink when they go hunting, because as one person stated, “Women prefer to always look and feel attractive (even while hunting), having pink as an option can help with any insecurities over what they are wearing, pink is a color that can immediately identify a female, women don’t want to be mistaken for a man, even from a distance or in the woods.”

There is an argument that can be made that women don’t want to look like men. Everywhere I go today, I see what I think are women dressed up like men and vice-versa. Is it important that the few women who want to “feel attractive” while hunting, forego the hunting safety issue just as Maine did when it came to appeasing a group of Amish?

As someone so eloquently put it, “Nobody looks good wearing hunter orange!” Hunting isn’t a fashion statement and the last time I checked it wasn’t restricted to only one sex. Did lawmakers act in a sexist fashion to devise this safety law? If the laws were devised for public safety, and that safety issue is a time-proven event, then religious sects who think their god will send them to eternal damnation, should stop hunting. What god would condemn bright clothing but allow getting all bloody killing animals. And if women feel it necessary to “feel attractive” while hunting, take up modeling.

All of this is just completely insane and proves the world has gone insane. One man was quoted as saying, “This borders on the absurd.” No, it doesn’t border on the absurd. It is beyond that. There is no longer any sense or sensibility or the reasoning skills and mental prowess to even know the difference.

INSANITY!

 

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High-Tech Hunting? You Can Count Me Out

PrimitiveHuntingThe other day I was reading an article posted on the Maine Portland Press Herald website, written by Bob Humphrey, about how useful technology has become to hunting and hunters. Perhaps, but I have little interest in changing the bulk of what I grew up loving to do – deer hunting. Color me Crabby Smurf!

And, of course, my comments are sure to be taken the wrong way as some young whipper-snapper, breast fed on gadgets and gimmicks that serve to render one’s brain one-dimensional, robotic and generally dysfunctional, that I want to ban the use of electronics for hunting. Let me reiterate what I said above: I have little interest in changing the bulk of what I, ME, not you and everybody else, grew up loving to do.

What pleasure does one get from “hunting” when gadgetry tells the hunter where the game are? Can’t you do this sort of thing at home on a computer? The article, linked-to above, proclaims that life is ruled by technology, taking neutral ground refusing to clearly state whether that is good or bad, but begins to justify the use of technological gimmicks to prop up the outdoor business.

Imagine you’ve spent several thousand dollars on a caribou hunt and then go five to seven days without ever laying eyes on an animal. Knowing the location of migrating herds allows outfitters to move their hunters into areas where they at least have a chance.

Obviously, this is a legal act, or so I presume, and I will not seriously question the need to make adjustments to hunting techniques based on the scientific need to manage for healthy game populations. Personally, I would never spend “several thousand dollars” for any kind of hunt. And, I would not pretend to deny someone who wants to…, at least until said hunts, technology and all, begin to cut into my experiences and opportunities as a primitive hunter.

Carrying cellphones and other electronic gizmos, loaded with “apps” that become the hunters’ knowledge bank is, well, dishonest in a sense. One has to wonder if these same “hi-tech” hunters have an “app” to dispense toilet paper when nature calls? Or do you just use the phone, GPS, radio, tablet, “eye” pad, etc.? Rinse when you get home.

You decide whether technology of this form is good or bad for society. Personally, I see the cellphone, and similar instruments, as the number one destructive tool of humanity, and it’s getting worse. Go to the grocery store. People “grazing” about the store on their phones, texting and talking, even asking what aisle an item might be in. The shopper can’t function beyond the device. Where’s the shopping list? Why can’t you remember what aisle the coffee is in? Oh, that’s right. You have a devise that will do your thinking for you. How convenient! How inhuman!

I run into people often who might tell me they had been to a “really cool” place. I ask them where it is located. They shrug their shoulders. North or south? Their reply is they have it programmed into their GPS that’s how they get there. Brilliant isn’t it? And of course these instruments are always correct in the information they dispense. NOT!

I grew up knowing north, south, east and west, how to read a compass, look up in the sky, see the sun, see the moon and stars, recognizing items in the forest, learning about deer habits and habitat – and none of it ran off of battery. What happens when your batteries go dead? Did you program your device to remind you to bring spare batteries? What happens when you follow the instructions on your GPS that leads you into territory where there are no “bars” to connect to your brain center? What will you do?

The author begins his piece by saying: “Technology is pervasive in all aspects of our lives.” Of course it is, whether we like it or not. But isn’t there something sacred about you and the forest and leaving that electronic addiction at home?

Oh, wait. Let me Google that and see if I can find the answer to my own question. Where’s my SMART phone?

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Deer Hunting With Drones?

I was sent some information from a reader about the prospects of hunting deer or other animals with the use of a drone; a drone being a remote controlled flying contraption that provides video or photos of areas used to locate game for hunting purposes.

First of all we must bear in mind the Airborne Hunting Act:

This Act, Public Law 92-159, approved November 18, 1971 (85 Stat. 480) and subsequently amended by P.L. 92-502, approved October 28, 1972 (86 Stat. 905) added to the Fish and Wildlife Act of 1956 a new section 13 (16 U.S.C. 742j-l), which is commonly referred to as the Airborne Hunting Act or Shooting from Aircraft Act, prohibits shooting or attempting to shoot or harrassing any bird, fish, or other animal from aircraft except for certain specified reasons, including protection of wildlife, livestock, and human life as authorized by a Federal or State issued license or permit. States authorized to issue permits are required to file reports with the Secretary of the Interior containing information on any permits issued.

Also keep it in your mind that this act, having been through the rigors of the courts at differing times, has some degree of time restrictions. It is my understanding that a certain period of time must elapse from the time a prospective hunter spots game and when he is on the ground and can legally shoot.

I’m not sure that this law would pertain all that much to hunting with a personal drone. However, one must be sure of their own state statutes. In Maine, I believe the law is quite clear in that it states:

1. Prohibition on use of aircraft to hunt. A person on the ground or airborne may not use an aircraft to aid or assist in hunting:

I would suppose that once lawyers got involved, a debate might ensue as to the definition of “aircraft”. It is also my belief that when this statute was written, it was not written to deal with drones. Rather it was written to deal with a hunter on the ground by aided by a pilot in the plane as to the location of game.

What are the statutes in your state and if legal would you consider using a drone to assist you with hunting? With the ever increasing presence of technology in the sport of hunting one has to wonder what the limits are and whether or not each state is keeping up with regulations to ensure that such contraptions aren’t having negative effects on the sustainability of game populations.

This blog addresses hunting with a drone and questions the ethical ramifications of drone hunting. And the video below is sample video taken from a small remote controlled drone. If the quality and capabilities of affordable drones in general is represented in this video, I certainly wouldn’t fear the overuse of the devices.

I should also point out here that I had previously had conversations with a friend about another issue concerning the use of drones for business related items and with a bit of research it was determined that the federal government, i.e. the FAA, is beginning to crack down on the personal use of drones and is intending to regulate the activity. This should mean, licensing and all other means of pricing and regulating hobby users out of commission.

It may not be a matter of whether you would use a drone to hunt with but a matter of whether your government will permit it.

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Safe Sex For Deer

Perhaps not exactly that but I got your attention. T.M. Lindsey at Political Fallout, has a different take on Iowa’s idea to spend up to $1,000 a deer for contraception to help reduce a blossoming deer herd. Here’s a sample of his ideas.

Implement faith-based initiatives which promote abstinence over promiscuity. Deer should be raised with the notion that it’s okay to wait for their destined fill of buck shot or their fated front end collision with an urban assault vehicle – both of which will take them one step closer to their Creator.

Tom Remington

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Winter Supplemental Feeding Of Whitetail Deer

Some states prohibit winter supplemental feeding while others have no real objections to it. Some states do it but strictly on an emergency basis. This discussion can lead to other discussions about supplemental feeding year round, food plots for deer and forest management for the purpose of creating better habitat.

So who’s right? Even biologist will disagree as to whether supplemental feeding should or shouldn’t be allowed. There are some things biologists will agree on. One of them being that the wrong kinds of food being doled out to deer, can kill them.

Are we helping deer when we feed them? A visit to the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife website will get you a full page of disadvantages to feeding and suggested alternatives. Here are some of the highlights.

Feeding deer in late fall may disrupt deer migration to natural wintering areas
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Supplemental feeding may not reduce deer losses during winter.

Supplemental feeding may actually increase predation.

Deer feeding sites near homes also place deer at greater risk of death from free-roaming dogs.

Deer feeding sites may increase deer/vehicle collisions.

Deer may starve when fed supplemental foods during winter.

Deer require one or two weeks to adjust to new foods.

Some foods are not easily digested by deer during winter.

Deer compete aggressively for scarce, high-quality foods.

Deer reject grains or pelleted foods that have become spoiled or moldy

Supplementally-fed deer may die from eating too much feed at one time.

Supplemental feeding is expensive.

Attracting deer to feeding sites, while failing to provide adequate amounts of supplemental foods can actually cause malnutrition in normally healthy deer populations.

Deer concentrations at feeding sites may increase the vulnerability of deer to diseases.

Supplemental feeding may have long-term impacts on the behavior of both deer and the people who feed them.

Deer tend to lose their wariness after prolonged contact with people at feeders.

People’s attitudes toward deer change after initiation of supplemental feeding projects.

Supplemental feeding may increase browsing of landscape plants and gardens.

Supplemental feeding within a deer wintering area can reduce the forest’s ability to shelter deer.

Those were a list of the things MDIFW calls disadvantages to supplemental feeding. Please take note that many of the statements are not clearly definitive. They use words like may or can.

Below is a list of suggestions people can do as an alternative to winter supplemental feeding.

Taking an active role in managing their lands to improve deer habitat naturally.

Supporting MDIFW programs that protect and enhance deer wintering habitat.

Working cooperatively with MDIFW to control deer populations in residential areas.

Allowing deer hunters access to their huntable lands.

This shows the highlights of the disadvantages of feeding per the MDIFW and suggestions for alternative ways to enhance and protect whitetail deer. Visit the website and more in depth discussion is there explaining more of their reasoning.

Tom Remington

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Give 'Em An Inch And They'll Take A Mile

Greed and selfishness run rampant everywhere these days. Combine that with a society that believes lying, cheating and stealing are all very acceptable practices and what are we left with?

In the sometimes fantasy worlds where office dwellers live, they stare out the window envisioning the utopia of the lion laying beside the lamb. There’s probably a unicorn or two trotting around, while Gentle Ben, the massive grizzly cuddles up with mom in front of the log cabin’s fireplace and Bambi rules the forest. Time to get real.

Several years ago, many of these dreamers envisioned the lone and mysterious wolf once again dominating the landscape of the Rocky Mountains – the cry of the wild. So it was decided to bring in a species of wolf that was not indigenous to the area and see how it would go. Plans were made and goals were set. Was that a real problem?

Many thought so and even more knew that in time it would present an entire array of future problems. Welcome to the future. Here we are several years later and war has broken out. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service announced on Monday they plan to remove the gray wolf from the Endangered Species Act list and turn management over to Idaho, Montana and Wyoming. The move may be delayed in Wyoming because that state has yet to come up with a viable and suitable wolf management plan the Feds like.

This all sounds innocent enough but the opposing sides are bringing out bigger guns and the battle lines are being drawn. The posturing for position has the livestock growers, hunting groups and others using their facts and figures to show that the wolf is destroying everything in its path. On the other side you have preservationists, conservationists, animal rights groups and just plain old animal lovers, claiming that all of the information the other side is presenting is false. They provide their own biologists, list of talking points, rhetoric and data to show that the wolf is not harming anything and should be allowed to continue to populate all of the world.

This kind of bantering is expected and will go on probably forever. The debate will end up in court and the outcome really will depend on who the last judge or judges are that rule and where they stand on wolves’ rights, whatever that is.

Both sides use government statistics to support their positions. I think the wolf advocates have an advantage because typically the government will opt for the “politically correct” assessment on wolves. Governments incessantly state that the claims by hunting groups that the wolf is killing of game species is not supported by their data. The Government also says that livestock kills are not nearly as big as the livestock growers claim. The media prints this information without finding out all the facts and the public buys into it and it forms the basis for discussions at local coffee shops.

What isn’t being told is that the “official” data doesn’t really tell the truth. There is no way for either side in this debate to know what killed a calf elk for example. The same is often true with a sheep or a cow. Unless someone in a position of authority sees it happen, more times than not this is not listed as an official wolf kill. I’m sure someone can produce numbers that will show how many deaths of animals occur and how many are labeled official wolf kills and how many are not.

Often times when authorities show up to a kill scene, they will admit that they see evidence of wolves – i.e. tracks, scat, etc. but if there is no direct evidence proving the wolf killed the animal, the owner of the livestock is out of luck. The wolf, like a coyote, is a predator and they will eat whatever is available. They are not one of the kind of animals that will only eat what it kills. It will scavenge.

Defenders of Wildlife, one of the agencies that advocate for the wolf, reimburses ranchers for livestock loss but only for official wolf kills. Ask the ranchers how many animals they lose total and what percentage they get compensated for.

The same is true for wildlife killed by predators. Grizzly and black bears, along with the wolf and coyote will kill elk calves and deer calves as well as small or weakened adults. If hungry enough, they will kill any other animal they can. Wildlife biologists will “guess” as to what percentage of loss might be attributed to each predator species but they have no exact numbers on that, even though some would suggest they do.

It passes my mind at the moment who it was that made the statement that “statistic prove that statistics can prove anything”. This debate will rage on and both sides will continue to fling statistics they can get any so-called authority to claim to be fact and the bottom line will come down to whose statistics are proving what, what you want to believe and how it fits into your own personal beliefs.

The one key ingredient in this passioned debate is a very large fact that almost never makes it into the round table discussions. When it was decided that wolves would be released in these areas to prosper, federal wildlife biologists and just about every other Tom, Dick and Harry stated what would be the goals of considering the re-introduction a success. Success meaning a large enough and stable enough population of wolves so that the animal could be managed without realistic fears of it being eradicated again.

This information is readily available. The goal for Wyoming, Idaho and Montana regions, which include the Yellowstone National Park, was 300 wolves involved in at least 30 packs, which would include breeding pairs. At present, the estimated population of wolves in this same area is around 1,200 and at least 50 packs. I have read estimates much higher than this.

The question I have to ask is why is it that when the wolf was brought into this region 300 wolves and 30 packs was an acceptable goal? Many thought it wasn’t feasible and would never happen. Well, here we are in 2007 and the discussions have turned to an over population of wolves and those who fought to get the wolf here are saying 1,200 wolves aren’t enough. Why?

That answer is quite simple. It’s called greed and selfishness. The old cliche of “Give em an inch and they’ll take a mile”. It’s what turns people to not want to support these kinds of interests. There is nothing reasonable about their agendas. If hunters kept demanding more animals to hunt and kill without consideration of conserving for the future, soon the mass population of Americans would turn against hunting. Fortunately hunters don’t do that but almost never, do groups such as Defenders of Wildlife ever look to compromise or concede. For them some is ever enough.

Very few people want to completely kill off all the wolves. Most want them controlled better. Most sensible people, including the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, know there are now too many wolves. They are having too great a negative effect on livestock growers as well as the balance of wildlife. It’s time to act and do something about it.

I believe the vast majority of Americans believe that there is good enough science available to make sure that any species will not be allowed to go extinct if there is any way humanly possible. It’s time for the wolf lovers and animal rights groups to back off. They need to lose some of the greed and selfish attitudes and allow to take place what is necessary to control and maintain a population of wolves that is beneficial to everyone and everything.

Tom Remington

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Statements Made About The Impact Of Wolves On Elk

We all do it. We spin information to fit our theories and beliefs more times than not paying little regard to all the facts. Politics in Washington works the same way as it does in the tiniest of towns through this great land. In its most basic form, all parties have an objective. How to reach that goal is so diverse often it becomes insurmountable.

The majority of people want healthy wildlife. How to achieve that is debatable. In the inter-mountain west areas around Idaho, Montana and Wyoming, there are wolves, the animal Americans love to hate. Nearly all people, whether knowledgeable or not believe that wolves prey on other wildlife and domestic animals. When the debate turns toward how much effect the wolf has on certain species is where the road splits.

Today’s Casper Star-Tribune has a story that partially addresses the issues about the impact wolves have on elk populations. Whitney Royster’s article has comments made by influential people in this three-state area about wolves and elk. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service says that a state needs to prove that wolves are having a detrimental effect on big game herds in order for them to grant authority to kill wolves.

The difficulty comes because nobody knows exactly what kind of impact wolves eating elk are having. It’s not black and white science and because of that personal perspectives play an important role in reaching conclusions – from both sides.

With that in mind, here are a few statements made by some officials about the elk/wolf political and scientific issues. Mitch King, regional director of U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service –

“You can’t sort of offhand say, ‘I didn’t kill an elk this year, and therefore wolves are killing them,'” he said. There need to be population numbers for big game, objectives, knowledge of where wolf packs are, and public input. Proposals must also include analysis of other factors affecting big game herds, such as habitat loss, and methods to address those other problems as well.

Carolyn Sime, wolf coordinator for the Montana Department of Fish, Wildlife and Parks said this –

wolves are one part of a complicated ecological system.

Factors affecting the number of big game also include drought, severe winters, hunting, and other predators. Elk herds in Montana, where wolves were never extirpated in the northern area of the state, are at or above objectives, she said.

“At this time our data do not support a statement that wolves are wiping everything out,” she said.

Montana is not looking to kill wolves to protect elk, because data do not demonstrate that wolves are having a significant impact, Sime said.

That does not mean hunters are not concerned.

The Yellowstone northern elk herd has seen reduced hunting. That herd, Sime said, is a migrant herd, and fewer elk are migrating out of Yellowstone National Park due to influences from drought, weather and predation.

“That herd comedown is due to many things,” she said. “It’s not a wolf-elk system in a vacuum.”

Ed Bangs, federal wolf recovery coordinator –

wolves eat elk and reduce the number of elk, but mountain lions eat about twice as much big game as do wolves. He said wolves stir up emotions that other large predators do not.

And wolf numbers are tied to the number of prey available. Lots of prey means lots of wolves.

“Wolves adjust themselves to the level of vulnerable prey,” he said. Wolf populations spiked upon reintroduction because there was a large prey base. Numbers will begin to level as habitat is taken up, he said.

Pat Crank, attorney general for Wyoming –

with 26 packs and about 400 wolves in Wyoming, the state is far beyond recovery goals. Any impacts already seen to big game are going to continue and increase unless the state can manage wolves like it does other wildlife species.

Terry Cleveland, director of Wyoming Game and Fish Department

wolves are having an impact on calf survival, particularly in the Clarks Fork area, where there used to be about 40 calves for every 100 cows. Now the ratio is less than 20.

“Over the long term it certainly appears that less (calf) recruitment due to wolf predation means less opportunities for hunters in some of those herd units,” he said. “We can’t say what percentage is due to wolves. We believe wolf predation in some areas is having an impact.”

He said wolves are likely having more than a 1 percent impact on calf losses, but it is not known how much of an impact.

So there you have it. Five people and five different opinions or positions taken by their perspective governmental organizations. These are the differing elk and wolf perspectives from state and federal agencies that are bound and restricted by the confines of political correctness. When you add to the mix, biologists who will give you reasons to eradicate the wolf again and scientists representing wolf advocacy groups showing reasons no wolves should be killed, there’s no telling what the general public will hear once the media is done adding their spin. And we need not forget the average Joe Hunter and Sally Civilian who will contribute the anecdotal evidence that conclusively proves that either wolves are our friends or they all must die.

Tom Remington

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Do Deer Make Good Patients In A Hospital??

I got sent these photos from Rod Davis this morning and if I hadn’t seen them for myself I wouldn’t have believed it was possible. Check out this guy who supposedly broke his neck after getting tangled up in a fence I think in Texas somewhere.

Deer With Broken Neck

View more pictures here.

Tom Remington

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Rex Rammell's Elk Once Declared "Not Pure" Retests As Pure

Roy and Kristy Sternes, owners of the Black Canyon Elk Ranch in Emmett, Idaho purchased the cow elk that a Canadian laboratory declared “suspect” of red deer genes. They bought the critter for meat but before it was butchered, the Sternes with the assistance of a veterinarian and the Idaho State Department of Agriculture, took tissue samples and sent them to a world renowned DNA testing lab in New Zealand. Those test came back declaring the cow elk as pure.

The Sternes released this information.

PRESS RELEASE

1/25/07

CONTACT: Roy Sterns 208. 739.1362

Kristy Sternes 208. 866. 0927

Black Canyon Elk Ranch—Emmett, Idaho

The world’s most respected lab, located in New Zealand, concerning elk/red deer genetics has just released results from the one suspect domestic elk cow from Dr Rex Rammell’s herd regarding her genetics. The cow elk was not among the elk which escaped from Rammell’s elk ranch. The New Zealand lab ran a DNA test which uses thirteen markers determining that the cow elk is pure elk with no red deer genes.

Roy and Kristy Sterns of Black Canyon Elk Ranch near Emmett purchased the animal for meat from Dr Rammell after the Idaho State Dept of Agriculture (ISDA) required the animal be slaughtered. ISDA transported the animal to a slaughter facility in Idaho. At the plant, both a private practice veterinarian and ISDA took DNA samples from the animal.

The independent veterinarian airmailed the sample to the Genomnz Lab in New Zealand. The results came back last night that the cow elk is pure elk.

Ten years ago, when the animal was purchased by Dr Rammell, she was given a certification of genetic purity by a Colorado lab as having no red deer genes. All of her offspring born on Dr Rammell’s ranch have been tested as pure elk with no red deer genes.

ISDA sent the cow elk blood to a Canadian lab which uses a test with just four protein markers. This is not a DNA test and not as scientifically sensitive as the New Zealand G3 test. The Canadian lab ran the tests twice showing a possible suspect red deer gene. This test goes back two generations for the red deer gene. This required a DNA test by a premiere lab which goes back three or more generations.

All the genetic and disease results are now back regarding Dr Rammell’s entire domestic elk herd, both those that escaped and those who were placed under quarantine. Every animal was checked for brucellosis and tuberculosis and elk that were slaughtered had their brains tested for chronic wasting disease (CWD). All test results have come back negative, proving once again that the domestic elk industry in Idaho is not spreading any disease nor harming wild elk genetics.

Tom Remington

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Another Case Of "Do As I Say, Not As I Do"

The state of Washington is another that does not allow farming of elk or deer. As with most states that ban this industry, the reasons stem mostly from the fear of contracting and spreading disease. Scientists believe that diseases such as tuberculosis, brucellosis and chronic wasting disease are much more easily contracted and spread when these animals congregate in large numbers.

Washington state is also another state that defies their own laws and practices elk farming. Many states participate in “emergency” supplemental feeding of elk herds during severe winters. What does that mean? In general terms, when winters are harsher than normal, i.e. cold and heavy snows, officials will bring in food to herds in order to lesson the degree of starvation among animals. An example of this is the Mt. St. Helens herd where last year people complained that elk were starving to death. Officials claimed the rate of starvation was no higher than what is considered normal, yet this year they have already begun supplemental feeding for that herd.

Now, under pressure from animal rights groups, state biologists are feeding the herds even when winters aren’t severe in order to maintain herd numbers that are artificially high. Even when the same scientists preach that keeping wild animals in large groups for extended periods of time will spike the chances for disease, they still do the feeding.

Now, they have gone one step further. The Seattle Times this morning has a short article that says officials there want to erect fences to contain an elk herd in the Sequim area.

Instead of moving a herd of elk that has been hemmed in by development in Sequim, wildlife managers have decided to spend about $1 million to erect fences to keep the animals out of highways and farms.

An earlier idea to move the elk out of the area was panned by the public. The fence is intended to keep the elk on public land and out of urban areas. Now the tribal and state co-managers of the herd are looking for money to pay for the fence.

This practice has been going on for centuries. It’s called farming. When farmers couldn’t contain their herds and keep them out of crops and off neighbors lands, they erected fences. The state of Washington prohibits such acts for elk and deer, yet they believe they are above the reasons they gave to prohibit elk farming. I am also sure much of the public pressure to keep the herd there is so they can maintain their own private zoo for elk.

On the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife website, an article there on chronic wasting disease sampling, states that Washington is a low risk state.

Washington is a very low risk state. Washington law does not allow farming of deer and elk, so we don’t have live animals being shipped around that could pose a risk, and we are far enough removed from Colorado and Wyoming that there is little chance of the disease spreading naturally to Washington.

There is no viable scientific evidence to show that a well regulated elk industry poses any threat to the public but obviously Washington wildlife officials believe otherwise…..or do they? If they believe as is quoted on the website that farming of deer and elk poses a threat, then why are they now practicing elk farming?

No state wants to contract diseases, including CWD but states should not be regulating an industry while at the same time defying their own laws. Next thing you know, the state will be selling permits to their “shooter bull” operations to help fund their farming ventures across the state.

Tom Remington

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