November 18, 2018

Watch Out For Them Moose!

It is that time of year for northern New Englanders to be on the lookout for moose in the roadways. The arrival of spring brings luscious green vegetation to the sides of the road earlier than in the woods and this is great foraging for the big animals looking for an easy meal.

New Hampshire alone averages around 200 moose deaths each year from vehicle collisions. These animals are big and when run into by a vehicle causes extensive damage and personal injury. They are dark colored and very difficult to see at night, often happening only when it’s too late.

So, drive carefully and be aware that these critters are out there and moving about freely or this might happen.

moose car collision

Tom Remington

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Animal Rights Group Out to Ban Trapping in Maine and Minnesota

The Animal Protection Institute, an animal rights group, based in California, is attempting to further their agenda to end trapping everywhere by hiding behind the Endangered Species Act. API is threatening a lawsuit against Maine and Minnesota if they don’t stop trapping in habitat areas used by the Canada lynx and bald eagles.

According to figures they got from their own sources, Maine has incidentally caught just over two dozen lynx and eagles in traps over the past dozen or so years. Those figures are debatable. It is clear their intention is only to stop trapping and they are using the Endangered Species Act to further their agenda.

Skip Trask, lobbyist for the Maine Trappers Association, says he disagrees with API’s interpretation of the Endangered Species Act. Using the ESA was successful in 2003 in stopping the coyote snaring program in Maine.

Both Maine and Minnesota allow trapping in habitat where endangered animals live. In Minnesota, it is the bald eagle. The official statement from Maine wildlife officials puts the eagle population at 385 nesting pairs and the lynx numbers at anywhere between 200 and 500 animals. Nobody knows for certain about the lynx because they are so reclusive and difficult to track. According to Skip Trask, he says his experiences and that of fellow trappers, put the population of the alusive cat into the thousands.

It is a shame when a group such as the Animal Protection Institute and many of the other animal rights groups have to abuse a law like the Endangered Species Act, to promote their personal agendas. Some of these groups are so far out in left field, they have been known to kill animals and blame it on hunters and trappers.

The intent of the Endangered Species Act isn’t to force people to cease living and normal activities. Taking away the means for many to make a living when any incidental deaths of protected animals is minimal and has no real negative affect of the species, is plain wrong.

The Wildlife Alliance of Maine, formed after the battle about bear hunting in 2004, said the Maine DIF&W has turned a blind eye in dealing with this issue. WAM has provided API with data they have on trapping and the lynx and bald eagle. Although they are not involved in any lawsuit threatened by API, WAM thinks what they are doing is a good thing.

We’ll continue to follow this story and keep you posted.

Tom Remington

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Maine Hunting Rule Change Proposals

Below is a list of some of the rule changes proposed by the MDIF&W as well as the proposed number of antlerless deer permits to be allocated in each of the Wildlife Management Districts. There is comment period on these items listed below until May 12, 2006

NOTICE OF AGENCY RULEMAKING PROPOSAL

ADVERTISE: April 12, 2006

AGENCY: Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife

RULE TITLE OR SUBJECT: Migratory Bird Hunting – North and South Waterfowl Zone Line

CONCISE SUMMARY: The Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife is proposing rules redefining the north and south waterfowl zone line. This rule change is necessary to bring the zone line into compliance with the newly established Wildlife Management Districts. The new line will be as follows:
The NORTHERN waterfowl zone will consist of Wildlife Management Districts 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, and 19.
The SOUTHERN waterfowl zone will consist of Wildlife Management Districts 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, and 29.

THIS RULE WILL__ WILL NOT__ HAVE A FISCAL IMPACT ON MUNICIPALITIES.

STATUTORY AUTHORITY: 12 MRSA, Section 10104 and 11855

PUBLIC HEARING: None scheduled – one may be requested.

DEADLINE FOR COMMENTS: May 12, 2006

AGENCY CONTACT PERSON: Andrea L. Erskine

AGENCY NAME: Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife

ADDRESS: 284 State Street – #41 SHS, Augusta, ME 04333-0041

E-MAIL: andrea.erskine@maine.gov

TELEPHONE: 287-5201

NOTICE OF AGENCY RULEMAKING PROPOSAL

ADVERTISE: April 12, 2006

AGENCY: Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife

RULE TITLE OR SUBJECT: Restrictions on the Use of Crossbows

CONCISE SUMMARY: In accordance with Title 12, Section 10953, the Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife is proposing rules regulating the use of crossbows for hunting including, but not limited to, restrictions on size, bolts, broadheads, sighting devices and safety mechanisms. These rules will prohibit the use of hand held, or pistol-type crossbows and crossbows with a draw weight of less than 100 pounds or more than 200 pounds. Legislation enacted by the 122nd Legislature authorizes the use of crossbows during the open season on bear as provided in Title 12, Section 11251 and the open firearms season on deer as provided in Title 12, Section 11401. Use of crossbows is prohibited during the expanded archery season and in an expanded archery zone as well as during the muzzleloading-only deer hunting season established under Title 12, Section 11404.

THIS RULE WILL__ WILL NOT__ HAVE A FISCAL IMPACT ON MUNICIPALITIES.

STATUTORY AUTHORITY: 12 MRSA, Section 10953

PUBLIC HEARING: None scheduled – one may be requested.

DEADLINE FOR COMMENTS: May 12, 2006

AGENCY CONTACT PERSON: Andrea L. Erskine

AGENCY NAME: Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife

ADDRESS: 284 State Street – #41 SHS, Augusta, ME 04333-0041

E-MAIL: andrea.erskine@maine.gov

NOTICE OF AGENCY RULEMAKING PROPOSAL

ADVERTISE: April 12, 2006

AGENCY: Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife

RULE TITLE OR SUBJECT: Antlerless Deer Hunting Restrictions

CONCISE SUMMARY: In accordance with Title 12, MRSA, Section 7457, subsection 1 (H), the Commissioner of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife proposes to adopt Antlerless Deer Hunting Restrictions for the 2006 regular and special muzzleloading deer hunting seasons. This proposal will establish specific permit allocations for the 29 Wildlife Management Districts (WMD) as follows:

WMD 1 – 0 permits
WMD 2 – 25 permits
WMD 3 – 0 permits
WMD 4 – 250 permits
WMD 5 – 450 permits
WMD 6 – 200 permits
WMD 7 – 425 permits
WMD 8 – 1,125 permits
WMD 9 – 450 permits
WMD 10 – 100 permits
WMD 11 – 125 permits
WMD 12 – 1,400 permits
WMD 13 – 1,750 permits
WMD 14 – 750 permits
WMD 15 – 4,200 permits
WMD 16 – 5,600 permits
WMD 17 – 13,725 permits
WMD 18 – 300 permits
WMD 19 – 0 permits
WMD 20 – 5,050 permits
WMD 21 – 5,050 permits
WMD 22 – 5,750 permits
WMD 23 – 11,250 permits
WMD 24 – 3,425 permits
WMD 25 – 3,000 permits
WMD 26 – 3,000 permits
WMD 27 – 0 permits
WMD 28 – 0 permits
WMD 29 – 600 permits

TOTAL – 68,000

NOTE: Boundaries in WMDs 18, 23, 25, 26, 27, 28, and 29 were realigned in 2006. WMD 30 was eliminated. Coastal islands are now part of the new WMD 29, except coastal islands in Washington County and those located in Franklin, Sullivan, Sorrento, Gouldsboro and Winter Harbor in Hancock County, which are located in WMD 27.

STATUTORY AUTHORITY: 12 M.R.S.A Sections 11152

PUBLIC HEARING: None scheduled – one may be requested.

DEADLINE FOR COMMENTS: May 12, 2006

AGENCY CONTACT PERSON: Andrea L. Erskine

AGENCY NAME: Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife

ADDRESS: 284 State Street – #41 SHS, Augusta, ME 04333-0041

E-MAIL: andrea.erskine@maine.gov

TELEPHONE: 287-5201

Tom Remington

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Maine DIF&W Advisory Council Meeting

This Thursday, April 20, 2006, there will be an advisory board meeting in Bangor that might interest a lot of Maine readers. The agenda looks busy.

DEPARTMENT OF INLAND FISHERIES AND WILDLIFE
ADVISORY COUNCIL MEETING

Bangor Regional Headquarters
Large Conference Room
Bangor, Maine
April 20, 2006 – 9:30 AM

AGENDA

AMENDED

I. Call to Order 9:30 A.M.
II. Introductions 9:35 A.M.
III. Acceptance of Minutes of Previous Council Meeting 9:40 A.M.
IV. Rule Making 9:45 A.M.

A. Step 3
1. Wells Archery Hunt Dates…………………………………….Mark Stadler
2. WMD 24 Expanded Archery…………………………………Mark Stadler
3. Significant Wildlife Habitat…………………………………..Mark Stadler

B. Step 2
1. Any-deer Permit Allocations…………………………………..Mark Stadler
2. Crossbow Rules Re: Equipment……………………………..Andrea Erskine
3. North and South Waterfowl Zones (re-defined)……………….Mark Stadler

C. Step 1
1. Furbearer Seasons……………………………………………..Mark Stadler
2. 2006 Fall Turkey Season………………………………………Mark Stadler
3. WMD 24 Pheasant Season……………………………………Mark Stadler

V. Other Business 10:45 A.M.

A. New Business
1. Deeryards/Forest Harvesting Presentation – DOC, LURC, Forestry, BPL & IFW
2. Bear Harvesting Methods Report to Legislature…………………Ken Elowe
3. Southern Maine Moose Hunt…………………………………..Mark Stadler
4. Northern Maine Turkey…………………………………………Mark Stadler
5. Endangered & Threatened Species Listing………………………Ken Elowe

B. Old Business

VI. Councilor Reports 12:40 P.M.
VII. Public Comments & Questions 12:50 P.M.
VIII. Agenda Items & Schedule Date for Next Meeting 12:55 P.M.
IX. Adjournment

Tom Remington

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Former SAM President Endorses Candidate

Past President of the Sportsman’s Alliance of Maine, Matthew Scott, is endorsing candidate Penelope Morrell for the vacant Legislative seat for District 83 in Maine. Below are the reasons he gives as found in a letter to the editor of the Morning Sentinel.

She supports the Maine tradition of hunting, fishing and trapping, which is our Maine heritage.

She is concerned about the environment and our economy and that we cannot have one without the other.

She saw to it her children had a college education and knows how important that is to our younger generation.

She is concerned about taxes, how government costs have increased, and wants to address tax issues with an open mind, not with a “meat ax approach.”

Maine’s economy is more resource-dependent than ever, and she continues to support the small-business base of our outdoor economy, wanting that sustainability continued.

Being from Belgrade does make a difference in my support of her candidacy. Belgraders stick together.

Tom Remington

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Maine Warden of the Year Named

Maine announced the recipient of this year’s Warden of the Year award. It goes to Dave Simmons. Simmons has been a warden since 1997. He received his award at the annual Maine Warden Service Awards Banquet. This year the banquet was held in Winslow.

Read the story here and learn about other wardens awards that were handed out.

Tom Remington

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Turkeys On The Menu For Aroostook County

Don’t look for a Hannaford’s truck delivering turkeys but soon Inland Fisheries and Wildlife personnel will be scouting out suitable areas in southern Aroostook County in northern Maine looking for wild turkey habitat.

A coalition comprised of several representatives of different groups ranging from farmers to scientists, have been meeting regularly in order to figure out a way to continue bringing more wild turkeys into this region. After several meetings, consensus was reached and a plan developed that all parties feel is workable and realistic.

The plan still follows the same guidelines and goals as established in 1999 when a 15-year turkey reintroduction plan was devised.

The plan calls for ways to deal with potential nuisance turkeys. This has been a concern with farmers having turkeys around eating their grain and destroying crops. The plan puts into play a system of dealing with these issues. It involves education, help lines, quick response and damage control teams.

Built into the plan are means by which issues can be revisited and the plan amended to address changing or unforeseen problems.

Tom Remington

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No Evidence of CWD in Maine Deer

Once again, Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife experts have found no evidence of the fatal chronic wasting disease in any of the deer tested. Brain tissues were sent to a federal lab in Connecticut for testing and all results came back negative.

Maine wildlife biologists spend many hours in the field observing deer and they also report they have seen no visible indications either. All licensed deer and elk farms in Maine are tested all the time and there remains no cases.

This is good news for Maine, its wildlife, and economy, as sometimes reports of the disease can have a very negative affect on hunting related businesses.

You can read the whole report release from MDIF&W in the Maine Hunting Today news section.

Tom Remington

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What's Love Got to Do, Got to Do, Got to Do With It?

I don’t think Tina Turner was singing about wild turkeys when she sang that song a few years ago but love is in the air in Maine and the tom turkeys are doing dumb things – like the males of every species seem to do when they get a bit twitterpated.

Maine’s wild turkey population is estimated at around 20,000 birds. That’s double the population from just 6 years ago and to go along with it, turkey permits issued to hunters last year jumped up to 23,951 compared to 4,000 issued five years prior.

With the growing population of the wild turkeys and the fact that now we are headed into the mating season, watch out for them gobblers on the highways and byways of Maine and other states. In Maine there has already been 3 turkey-vehicle collisions this week and I don’t mean the turkeys from Massachussets either.

It’s not always easy to get a turkey to fly but they will and when they have hens on the brain, no telling when, where, and how they’ll fly. One report on the Maine Turnpike said that a driver ran into an in-flight turkey that went through his windshield, landed on the front seat and got up and waddled out the back door of the car – no doubt still looking for that hen.

There’s always good in everything and this is a sign that when the turkey season opens in May, them tomfoolery masters will being trying to convince one big tom it’s time to tango – if the mating season doesn’t come and go by then.

So keep your eyes out for turkeys in love and get practiced up on those turkey calls. You may need them in a few weeks.

Tom Remington

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Maine Warden Promoted

Eleven-year veteran of the Maine Warden Service was promoted to Captain recently. Joel Wilkinson of Greenville had just recently been promoted to Sergeant. Congratulations to Mr. Wilkinson.

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