The mouse that roared!
Minnesota officials are claiming to have nabbed two old men, 70 and 68 years of age, illegally running traps lines. Officials state they confiscated 638 illegally-set snares. It appears officials have had these two duffers under investigation since 2014.
According to one media report, a northern Minnesota trapper, said these men were not trappers, they were “butchers.” That may be an accurate description…or not, when you consider what 638 traps yielded. If you want to call them trappers, they were extremely poor at what appears to be an illegal enterprise.
Minnesota is claiming this to be the biggest trapping bust in the state’s history. I’m guessing finding 638 traps is big for two men, but for that effort, the state officials report only confiscating one wolf, “17 foxes, five snowshoe hares, two fisher, and one deer that the poachers had illegally taken.” And I repeat all taken, I don’t think the deer was, by at least 638 traps. Astounding!
Charges ranged from not tending traps as required by regulation, unmarked traps, loops in snares sized improperly, unreported or untagged game, etc. Are we to think these two clowns intended to obey the laws after putting out 638 traps? *Note* – According to the trapping rules and regulations of Minnesota, there is no limit on the number of traps one trapper can put out. A trapper is supposed to check traps daily. I doubt two old men could tend a dozen traps each a day.
One person who left a comment at the site of the media report asked, “You spent two years and how many tax dollars following and collecting evidence on these guys and the worst they can get is a 3K fine and a year in jail? Seriously?”
One does wonder why it took 3 years to shut these two guys down.
However, never fear because the idiot wolf lovers, along with their lackeys at the newspaper, are using the event to promote the banning of all trapping to protect wolves, stating how inhumane snaring is. I always have wondered how something to do with animals is called “inHUMANe” when animals aren’t HUMAN…well, at least not in the minds of sane people.
Press Release from the U.S. Sportsman’s Alliance:
Take Action Today! Sportsmen’s Alliance members should contact their Congressman or Congresswoman today and ask them to vote NO on HR 1438. HR 1438 has been assigned to the House Committee on Natural Resources. Members can contact their legislator by using the Sportsmen’s Alliance’s Legislative Action Center.
New York Congresswoman Nita Lowey, a longtime opponent of hunting rights, has introduced legislation that would ban trapping on national wildlife refuge lands. House Resolution 1438 known as the Refuge from Cruel Trapping Act, would ban body gripping, foothold and snare traps on more than 150 million acres of federal land.
In a statement released on her website, Lowey writes: “We must restore the true meaning of ‘refuge’ to the National Wildlife Refuge System.” Additionally, Lowey also quotes Born Free USA, a long-time anti-trapping organization. Their quote incorrectly states that “The mission of the National Wildlife Refuge System is clear: to be an inviolate sanctuary for our native wildlife.”
Despite the lofty rhetoric and misleading statements, the National Wildlife Refuge System was not designed to be sanctuary for animals; instead, it was specifically designed to include hunting, fishing and trapping. Moreover, in 1997 Congress approved the National Wildlife Refuge Improvement Act, which identified hunting, which includes trapping, as a priority use of refuge land. The law was signed by President Bill Clinton. In addition, trapping is an effective tool for controlling predators, which can negatively impact other wildlife on refuge lands.
“It’s clear from her statements that Representative Lowey does not have a firm handle on the purpose of these lands, or how the funds used to manage them for the benefit of all species are derived, ” said Evan Heusinkveld, president and CEO of the Sportsmen’s Alliance. “It’s not surprising that such a distorted view would lead to legislation like this. And it’s no surprise that Representative Lowey is rated a ‘Humane Champion’ by the Humane Society of America’s Legislative Fund.”
Trapping is utilized across the United States, by both federal and state wildlife managers. Refuge land is managed in cooperation with state fish and wildlife agencies. HR 1438 would put a one-size-fits-all federal ban in place for refuges rather than allow state biologists do what is best for individual refuge properties. The traps that would be banned by HR 1438 are the most common and effective devices used by trappers. HR 1438 is a first step to ban hunting on all federal land and should be rejected.
Press Release from the Sportsmen’s Alliance:
On Wednesday, Feb. 15, U.S. District Judge Jon Levy issued his ruling in a lawsuit that sought to revoke the state of Maine’s Incidental Take Permit (ITP), which would open individual trappers to Endangered Species Act (ESA) violations. Judge Levy ruled the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s use and application of ITPs were lawful and in keeping with the requirements of the ESA.
The ruling is a clear victory for the Sportsmen’s Alliance Foundation, trappers in Maine and the Maine Department of Inland Fish and Wildlife. In his ruling, Judge Levy found that the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s “actions were in keeping with the requirements of the Endangered Species Act…the National Environmental Policy Act…and the Administrative Procedure Act…”
“We are extremely pleased that District Court Judge Levy has sided with reasonable and responsible management,” said Evan Heusinkveld, Sportsmen’s Alliance president and CEO. “Today’s clear ruling is nothing short of a full victory for trappers, but also hunters and anglers, too. This case had far-reaching implications for how Endangered Species Act policies would be implemented. If anti-hunting organizations can ban all trapping in the areas where protected lynx are found, what[sic] would stop them from banning fishing in streams or rivers that contain[sic] endangered fish species?”
The case, filed by the anti-hunting and anti-trapping groups Center for Biological Diversity, the Wildlife Alliance of Maine, the Animal Welfare Institute and Friends of Animals, was essentially a backdoor attempt to use the Endangered Species Act to stop trapping in the state. At the heart of the legal battle were Incidental Take Permits, which are granted under the ESA and provide for limited, incidental taking of federally protected species. Without such protection, individual trappers and state wildlife agencies could be held liable for ESA violations every time a lynx was accidentally caught in a legal trap.
“Today is a great day for Maine trappers, and this judgment vindicates the great work of the Maine Department of Inland Fish and Wildlife,” said James Cote, director of government affairs for the Maine Trappers Association. “We are so pleased with this outcome, which is positive for trappers and Canada[sic] lynx alike, and that wouldn’t have been possible without our partnership with the Sportsmen’s Alliance.”
Canada lynx, which are listed as a threatened species in the U.S. due to fragmented populations at the southernmost range of their habitat, are abundant north of the border in Canada. In fact, there are many who believe that the lynx populations should be removed from the ESA altogether.
This is not the first time that the Sportsmen’s Alliance and Maine trappers have prevailed in trapping litigation. In 2010, we successfully defended against a similar lawsuit that also tried to use the Endangered Species Act to stop trapping. That case paved the way for trapping to continue.
Joining the Sportsmen’s Alliance Foundation in the most recent case was the Maine Trappers Association and the National Trappers Association.
“The state of Alaska has filed a lawsuit challenging the legality of a federal agency’s restrictions on predator harvests on wildlife refuges and national parks there.
State attorneys filed the lawsuit Jan. 13 in the U.S. District Court of Alaska, claiming new rules adopted by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) violate a 1980s law authorizing the state to manage wildlife, impairs indigenous peoples’ ability to harvest food for sustenance, and sets a precedence to restrict future fish and game harvests, intended to be under state control.
The new rules prohibit taking black or brown bear cubs or sows with cubs, taking brown bears over bait, taking bears using traps or snares, taking wolves and coyotes from May 1 to Aug. 9, and taking bears from an aircraft or on the same day as air travel has occurred.
In 2015 the National Park Service (NPS), also under the Department of the Interior, placed similar restrictions on national park lands there.”<<<Read More>>>
It has always amazed me the amount of, not only ignorance (a case of failure to learn), but stupidity (it just cannot be corrected) that exists in the world today. One of the most revealing events in the revelation of ignorance and stupidity, all too often comes to us in the form of blind hypocrisy. Blind hypocrisy is the act of saying one thing, when it conveniently fits the present narrative, only moments later saying the opposite or disproving the original statement, and not having a clue as to what you have done. This clueless behavior is, most often, driven by willful ignorance and/or incurable stupidity.
When convenient, environmentalists and their associated animal perverts, in an attempt to extol their own self-proclaimed righteousness in everything to do with predators, heartily, and often from a position of mental instability, point a finger of blame at the hunter/trapper for what they believe to have been the “extirpation” of the gray wolf, grizzly bear, coyote, mountain lion, and any other animal that stands to pad their corrupt bank accounts all in the name of saving the world (wink, wink).
A brief lesson in history shows us that as settlers moved West, what existed for large predators at the time (not nearly so large as environmentalists want us to believe), often stood in the way of the settlers’ God-given right to Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness. And so, with the help of governments, the value of meat and furs, trappers and hunters set out to, at least, limit the extensive terror these large predators wielded. I cannot say, nor is there historic evidence, that the intent was to extirpate or cause extinction of any of the large and small prey that existed in many places.
This need to control and limit the damages of animals, and in particular, large prey, was not relegated to the West. Historic documents show us of the constant conflict between man’s desire for Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness and the existence of these animals in every part of the United States.
The need for all of this history and human behavior lecture is to make a point. I have said repeatedly, and did the same above, that when convenient, the environmentalists will point a finger of blame at the hunter/trapper for the serious reduction in large predators that took place nearly 200 years ago. When there appears to be – or probably more accurately stated – when pseudo-science, that is the science of convenience, is used to convince the American people of a wild animal “shortage,” that shortage is caused, in their small minds, by man and in particular, by hunters/trappers.
Let’s turn the table just for a moment. It is very common to read about serious problems that are presented due to too many of one or more wild animal species. Just recently, one tiny town in Downeast Maine, that is overrun with deer, had to create some sort of a means to rid the town of a reasonable number of deer in order to alleviate public safety concerns and property damage. The event is odd because overall Maine is void of an overabundant deer herd.
We are all subject to hearing about problems with coyotes. Coyotes present all kinds of problems from spreading disease, to killing pets and destroying game herds like deer, and livestock. We now witness abundant coyote populations living in our major cities. Presently, I live in a city of near 100,000 and within a metropolis of between 1 and 2 million people, depending on the time of year. People who live in my neighborhood, have been repeatedly warned that for several years a pack of coyotes has lived in the park next door and that those coyotes come into our area preying on dogs, cats and rabbits. The coyotes recently killed a dog when the owner broke the neighborhood rules and let their dog outside, without the restraint and control of a leash. This is but one example.
When the discussion comes up in all the “Fake News” media platforms about such problems, the image becomes one of emotional, ignorant and stupid people with head tossed back, back of hand on forehead, exclaiming, “What are we going to do?”
Brainwashing, propaganda, mind control and purposely-programmed education institution instruction, results in severe ignorance and the inability to think and/or reason. In other words, people have become insane.
Today I am reading about the State of South Carolina that has a coyote problem. The article I have linked to states that deer hunters alone kill 30,000 coyotes a year and still there is a problem. So the state implemented a contest in which they tagged 16 coyotes and released them throughout the state. Anyone killing one of these coyotes can bring the animal to an official station and win a prize of a life-time hunting license.
An official with the South Carolina Department of Natural Resources (DNR) is quoted as saying, “The legislators are trying to respond to the question of, ‘What are you going to do about these coyotes?’ ” said S.C. DNR’s Jay Butfiloski. “But there are no quick fixes. You could say you want less coyotes but how are you going to get there? The only real viable way is to convince people who are doing outdoor activities to take more coyotes.”
SHUCKS! What are they going to do? Either they(?) want less coyotes or they don’t want less coyotes. If they really want less coyotes, the answer to the problem already exists. The state seems to think the solution to the problem is to convince hunters and trappers to kill more coyotes. Hint: tagging 16 coyotes and offering a free license, isn’t going to do the trick.
If it is true that South Carolina deer hunters alone kill 30,000 coyotes a year, then the question should be asked, why do they kill that many coyotes. Surely it’s not for the value of the fur because coyotes’ pelts have very little value – at least most consistently the pelts are worthless. There are spikes when furs will jump up some but overall…worthless and very little incentive to expend the effort to kill them for profit.
I’m going to guess that hunters kill coyotes to help protect other game species, such as deer and turkey. I’m also going to guess that if deer hunters alone kill 30,000 coyotes a year and there is still a problem, there must be in excess of 250,000 in the State of South Carolina. Hint: tagging 16 coyotes and offering prizes of free licenses isn’t going to do the trick.
It appears the State is looking to find out what kind of additional interest this tagged coyote contest will generate. I might suggest the DNR not hold their breath in great expectation.
If the State of South Carolina is serious about getting rid of coyotes, the state needs to make the effort to kill coyotes worth hunters’ while. Nearly 200 years ago, hunters and trappers were killing wolves and coyotes and the government paid them more for the effort then than is done today.
The short of all of this is that these environmentalist-trained officials like to blame hunters and trappers when species go extinct, but when there are so many of a species it presents problems that even environmentalists are willing to acknowledge, suddenly they become ignorant and stupid – “What are we going to do?”
But the problems of dealing with predators go deeper than willful ignorance and the actions that cause it. Even hunters, trappers and outdoor people are often clueless.
Frank Miniter, writing in the American Hunter for the NRA, says, “Coyotes, after all, are an awesome part of the ecosystem.” With all of the lop-sided troubles that coyotes cause, with disease, destruction of species, public safety, attacks on pets and children, how can anyone with a straight face, who knows anything about this animal, call it “an awesome part of the ecosystem?”
I understand the perceived need of the National Rifle Association (NRA) to be as politically correct as possible, but how does such ridiculous political correctness benefit anyone? It doesn’t if and when you understand the true dynamics of predator behavior and the need for control to mitigate human conflict. People remain ignorant because they are taught that Nature balances itself. Even though that false claim has been disproved for several decades now, the convenience of perpetuating the lie remains alive in order to help fulfill the need to promote agendas and for environmental groups to make money.
Unfortunately for all of us, Frank Miniter’s article is nearly completely void of any links to the outdated claims he has made about coyotes. Calling coyotes awesome and making incomplete claims that coyotes, for the most part, have no impact on deer herds, and that it takes at least a 75% reduction in coyotes each year to have any impact, only provides disinformation to the animal rights perverts and environmentalists who want YOU, not them, to be just slightly inconvenienced by over-protected coyotes, killing your game animals, attacking your children and killing your livestock and pets.
What an AWESOME part of our ecosystems!
Blind ignorance refuses to allow anyone to see that after wolves and coyotes were seriously reduced in this country, for good reason, we got along just fine without this “awesome part of our ecosystem” for at least one century. Now, all of a sudden, we can’t live without them. We will all die without nasty, wild dogs.
Miniter’s information is outdated and useless.
A friend of mine, when commenting about South Carolina’s minuscule effort to reduce coyote populations and the American Hunter article about coyotes affecting deer herds, says, “Sometimes when you care you at least attempt to do something instead of spout outdated and useless stats and reasons why you do nothing.”
For a brief time a while ago, Maine attempted to limit coyote populations and targeted them in and around winter yarding areas. The effort showed signs of improvement, but that program soon died. At least they tried.
*Editor’s Note* – After posting this article and rereading it the following day, I realized that when I made the statement that the reason Maine has to have a “new” 15-year plan for deer, moose, bear, turkeys, etc. was because the Legislature makes them do it. This is true but it is also a necessary evil if Maine intends to receive any Federal funding or support. In essence, the main driving factor for the 15-year plan is Federal money. (Updated 12/24/2016 10:53 a.m.)
Before getting your undies in a bunch, understand that the reason Maine formulates 15-year management plans for big game species is because the Legislature, an author and purveyor of bureaucratic nonsense, tells them they must do this. Why? Well, your guess is as good as mine.
While for most individuals and small businesses, it is important to devise plans that help to lay a path toward success, seldom are they followed – at least to the letter. If you had taken the time to read fully the existing 15-year-plan for deer management, compare it to the realities of what has taken place during that 15 years, and it makes sense that having the plan, with any detail, is a waste of time. Much of it is “copy and pasted” from the previous and then an addendum here and an addendum there. Anyone taking the time to read the plans discover that they either like it or dislike it.
According to what George Smith writes on his website, the proposed goal of the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife (MDIFW) in the new deer plan is to: “Maintain the deer population below biological carrying capacity while providing hunting and viewing opportunity.” As I see it, this should be about good enough for MDIFW’s 15-year deer management plan. It says it all and provides the best loop hole and excuse, other than Global Warming of course, when they say they intend to maintain the deer population “below biological carrying capacity.” This they have been extremely successful at doing for a couple of decades now. Why should we expect anything different? Now, they will have a written excuse to fall back on when convenient.
Some hunters get all excited when they hear that their fish and game department is going to “provide hunting opportunity,” even if it is written into a constitutional amendment. They have no idea just what that means. Here’s an example of what “opportunity” might look like if and when the MDIFW is further successful in maintaining a deer population “below biological carrying capacity.” November is approaching and MDIFW announces the winners of the 75 doe-only permits that will be issued to lottery winners of the Maine Deer Lottery that will “provide the opportunity” for winners to go onto Maine’s 110-acres of designated public land and hunt deer – with an atlatl, – void of any sharp tip in order to keep the animal rights people happy. Pretty lousy prospects wouldn’t you say, especially when you realize this is the entire “opportunity” the MDIFW is or feels obligated to provide. In short, they are fulfilling their Plan and Mission Statement.
Which now brings us to the new legislation everyone thinks is so wonderful – that added language to the “Mission Statement” of the MDIFW. Here’s what the mission statement says, with the added legislative language in bold letters. “The Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife is established to preserve, protect and enhance the inland fisheries and wildlife resources of the State; to encourage the wise use of these resources; to ensure coordinated planning for the future use and preservation of these resources; to provide for effective management of these resources; and to use regulated hunting, fishing and trapping as the basis for the management of these resources whenever feasible.”
I mean seriously! This has no teeth – for the hunter, fisherman and trapper that is! It has lots of “gumability” for the heavily dominated environmentalists who now run fish and wildlife departments across the nation…Maine is no exception. Basically it’s worthless text taking up time and space. Oh, yes, it sound really good. Some even think it guarantees a Maine citizen’s right to hunt, fish and trap. It doesn’t! All it says is that MDFIW will do the exact same things it has done for several decades and if the need exists for hunting, fishing and trapping to control numbers, then so be it. They don’t have to.
This is a mission statement – a worthless paragraph fit for anyone who gets off on feel-good crap sandwiches. There is no binding legislation that mandates that MDFIW and/or the Maine Legislature manages OUR games species for surplus harvest. No more than the new plan will guarantee enough game to harvest, especially if the social demands disagree with the pseudo-scientific management currently in place.
What is on display here is government at it routine, worthless, bureaucratic nonsensical self, wasting time, drafting documents nobody reads and, more importantly, nobody abides by or even makes an attempt to closely resemble. Again, I ask what’s the point?
Remember Maine’s Plan for Deer? A work of utter brilliance wasn’t it? Everyone sat around and sang Kumbaya…repeatedly…feeling real good that Maine was FINALLY going to do something about our lack of deer in the state. How did that work out? Oh, you forgot all about it? Maybe that was the real plan. Did that Plan for Deer include a part that when Maine had one non severe winter, everything would be coming up roses? Perhaps a better plan than the waste of time plan that was drafted.
In effect, isn’t this what the 15-year-plan is all about? The Legislature, in order to keep the microscopic number of people who actually read such a plan happy, require the Department to copy and paste, wave a magic wand, repeat “hocus-pocus” six times, release a draft, pretend anybody cares, print a final copy, file it away, and it’s forgotten, as the Department will just do as it damn well pleases and has done for like forever. When a wheel squeaks, a little oil (lies) is applied and the squeak stops until the next round.
The bottom line is that the MDIFW is going to do all that is necessary, first to ensure that salaries and retirement are fully considered and then somehow try to please the few people who want to hunt, fish and trap, the lazy slobs who want to ride around in plush SUV’s “viewing” wildlife, those who fear Lyme disease, and those who get angry because the deer are eating their shrubs, while never actually considering what was written in a Management Plan or what their mission statement is.
MDIFW has their bases covered and we the taxpayers and license buyers pay to have somebody copy and paste a plan together. But, worst of all, some of us actually believe the intent of the plan and the mission statement is real and will be used as a guideline.
There’s little point in giving the plan or the effort much attention unless you plan to read the draft, offer suggestions, changes, deletions, etc. and then spend every waking moment of your life after it passes making sure the Department adheres 100% to the Plan (ROFLMAO). But don’t forget to read the part that gives the Department the authority to change pretty much whatever they want.
Yup! Bureaucratic Nonsense…and, oh yeah –