December 17, 2017

So, Just What Exactly is Maine IFW Trying to Communicate?

First thing this morning I opened a link to a news story about how a major land owner in Maine, J.D. Irving, has been awarded a conservation award from Sustainable Forest Initiative. In gleaning the report, I read this: “JDI is supporting a large study of white-tailed deer through collaboration with six scientists as well as partners in government across New Brunswick and Maine. The deer research is using GPS tracking and extremely accurate forest inventory mapping to look at how deer are using different forest types during summer and winter months. This long-term study will monitor 140 deer and the habitats they choose over the next four years.”

Did I know this? Did you know this? Without knowing what exactly “supporting a large study” means, one might think that activity deserving of recognition might be worthy information to openly and eagerly share with the Maine people. Evidently it’s not.

In my work with this website, part of that includes a pretty close monitoring of the things that the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife (MDIFW) does….or doesn’t do. I am signed up to receive press notices, email notifications and Twitter Updates, although I suspect strongly that I don’t receive all that go out…for whatever the reasons.

It wasn’t until long after MDIFW had begun their deer study, that I and the rest of the public learned of it. It wasn’t until today, that I learned that J.D. Irving was “supporting a large study” with Maine and New Brunswick. If I, as someone who spends probably more time and effort than the majority of Maine residents keeping track of such things, don’t know these things, one has to suspect the general population isn’t either.

To date, MDIFW has been very stingy with any information about the study. Other than an occasional “release” to a “safe zone” propaganda outlet, the public would know nothing about the study or that it even existed.

However, this really doesn’t come as a surprise to me, as MDIFW does a very poor job of “communicating” with the public and and even worse job “communicating” with the license-buying sportsmen who pay their salaries. One example of terrible communicating is the department’s relentless tardiness in making available deer, bear, moose and turkey harvest reports and data. Seriously, I wonder why that is?

I also wonder why it is that a better effort can’t be made to share information about the ongoing studies of deer and moose in the state? Is it that the department really hasn’t the time or the money?

Following the revelation that J.D. Irving was awarded for “supporting a large study” of deer, I found out that the MDIFW has decided that the T.V. show, North Woods Law wasn’t embarrassing enough for them and the Governor’s office, so as part of what is being expressed as a campaign to “better communicate their mission with the general public,” they have teamed up with a professional actor to make “funny” videos.

The article I just finished reading says these videos are to share with the public and to “get our message out.” It appears to me that the message MDIFW wants to get out is void of deer and moose studies, or anything to do with hunting, trapping or fishing, even though, as I have repeatedly stated, it is these sportsmen who fund a great part of MDIFW’s budget…a budget that evidently allows them to hire a professional actor and spend their time recording “funny” videos for the “new” website and to publish on YouTube.

I also learned that: “The videos, produced by a professional ad agency [how much did this cost license holders?], are quick hits on three outdoorsy topics: hiking preparedness, birding and invasive species. (emboldening added)

If J.D. Irving’s “supporting a large study” is great enough that it actually made the study possible (and I don’t know what “supporting” means – maybe MDIFW should tell us?) maybe it would make a whole lot of sense to get J.D. Irving into one of those videos, if they are all that important to “getting the message out.” But maybe this is more telling than we realize. Perhaps the “message” is more about hiking, birding and invasive species, than deer, moose, trout or roughed grouse because the department has changed their focus to side dishes while disregarding the meat and potatoes.

But here I am again saying, this shouldn’t come as any surprise. Maine’s fish and game department – even fisheries and wildlife is an inaccurate title for the message it appears they want to send – is no different than all the rest of this country’s environmentalism-driven departments based on Scientism and the relationships of people and animals, far exceeding the relationships between person and person, as is obvious in our violent, angry and hate-filled society.

What I want to know is what plans the State of Maine, and the MDIFW, have in place to fund the future department of natural resources, animal rights and protectionism, when hunting, trapping, and fishing, along with the closing down of access to forests, effectively stopping ATV riding and snowmobiling, are eliminated in about 10 years?

The MDIFW evidently doesn’t have the time or resources to get game harvests reported online until the start of the following hunting seasons, or later, but they have time to make “funny” videos and resources to hire an ad agency, with a professional actor, to send out the message that hiking, birding, and invasive species are far more important than hunting, fishing and trapping.

I think the message is very clear and that MDIFW has been advertising that message loud and clear for several years now. MDIFW is NOT about getting the message out that hunting, trapping and fishing are the very backbone of this entire industry that has brought Maine and the rest of this nation to a point were responsible wildlife management has become the norm. Because we live in a post-normal age, all that has proven to work and has been successful and effective, must be destroyed and replaced with Romance Biology and VooDoo Scientism.

Maine, and the rest of the nation should say goodbye to our traditions of hunting, fishing and trapping and prepare for the “message” MDIFW and others are trying to get out.

From my perspective, it’s a real shame. I also feel bad for J.D. Irving that MDIFW cannot even take the time to acknowledge their support for their ongoing deer study. It is terrible public relations like this that next time MDIFW wants to have a study, they will be left on their own to figure it out.

Good work people!

As I see it, the choice now becomes mine. I can either hope that hunting and fishing are around until I drop dead, or I can become part of the “New Science” Scientism that is driving it all. Answer? I will NOT be signing up for “Keeper of the Maine Outdoors.”

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Wildlife Management Communication by Keeping Your Mouth Shut?

Maine is in the midst of what could be described as the throes of drafting 15-year management plans for deer, bear, moose and turkey. There are no draft plans yet available, so all I have been able to get are a minuscule sampling of what is being discussed for plan consideration.

In what I have read about many of the four plans, it seems that at least one of the goals is calling for increased communication and education of the public about each species. It seems that for the duration of time that I have been writing about game management efforts in Maine, I have heard that drumbeat incessantly. Has there been improved communication and education with the public on what the Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife (MDIFW) is doing to responsibly manage the game species they are mandated by the Legislature to do? I guess that is difficult to answer because the perceived result is individually value-weighted. Also consider, that the Maine taxpayer laid out a sizeable amount of coin so that MDIFW could pay an “outside” entity to devise a survey that would give MDIFW favorable results for their work- wink, wink. All of Maine loves MDIFW. Odd, I might say.

So, let’s consider.

I had written earlier how that it seems everyone loves Bullwinkle, but nobody wants to discuss winter ticks but as something bugging (sorry) the life out of moose. It therefore seemed understandable that when MDIFW undertook a moose study, there was not a lack of media coverage – very little as far as preliminary findings, but photos of all the Bullwinkles to impress the public. So let me give credit where credit is do, as far as exposing to the public its effort to study moose.

I wonder how many people know that as part of the moose study, aerial counts of moose populations were done, as well as counts of deer? And deer have also been collared and are being studied, I guess. Who might suspect? Perhaps Bullwinkle is just that much bigger an icon and photographs more easily than a deer. I dunno. Is there more money and job security in looking out for Bullwinkle?

The public is quickly notified about piping plovers, bats, loons, bald eagles, cormorants, puffins and ruby-throated-croople-poops but isn’t it a disproportionate media coverage (press releases, Tweets, etc.) between these critters and deer? Or it’s my imagination. However, when one considers the trillions of dollars over the many decades that Maine has enjoyed in direct and indirect revenue from exploiting the whitetail deer, what the MDIFW is doing to ensure its sustainability, we hear very little about. Odd, I would say.

It takes MDIFW months to even get around to publishing information about game harvests – deer are no exception. No, not everyone is as anal as I am, wanting every last detail of data collected from the harvest, but the general public wants to be told what the number of deer, bear, and moose taken without waiting until the following Summer, or later, to get it. An “unofficial” number within 2 weeks of the end of general rifle season on deer would go a long, long way toward improving PR with the people, in particular the hunters. Perhaps MDIFW doesn’t care about who pays their wages? Odd, I would say.

I have been reading about some of the proposed plans for bear management, where it is being suggested that there needs to be a way to increase the number of bear hunters and to improve education of the public about bears, bear management and the need for the implementation of hunting and trapping as a viable means of population control. All of this, and yet, the latest bear hunting season commenced before MDIFW had released to the public the previous year’s harvest information. Odd, I would say.

Maybe the employees at MDIFW are that much more important than those of us coughing up the big bucks (dollars) so they can keep their jobs. I learned at a very young age that if you wanted to keep your job, you had to make sure you kept those in power over you happy. I suppose that has been lost along with most everything else that was once considered normal. Odd, I would say.

So, some might be asking, what prompted this rant? Well, let me tell you. This morning I received information from a colleague from New Brunswick, Canada. He sent a link to a news article about how New Brunswick, along with Maine, the University of Maine and JD Irving Co. were undertaking a deer study in which deer are being collared in locations in New Brunswick and Maine. If you’re interested in the purpose of the study, click on the link above.

Otherwise, this is the kind of stuff that drives me crazy. We read about how MDIFW and the “committee” working on game plans want to improve communication and education, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah and I have to find out through a member of the public in Canada about Maine’s involvement with another deer study. WHAT THE HELL IS THE BIG SECRET? And, odd, I would say.

Once again today, in reading George Smith’s latest article about the plans and proposals for turkey management in Maine, the head of the Maine Professional Guides Association said, “…need for fact sheets on turkeys and other big game animals, and improved communications about them with hunters, landowners, and the public.” Hasn’t this become a very common theme? Odd, I’d say…especially when you consider that there appears to be nothing accomplished to resolve this problem. Why is that? Maybe it’s perceived by MDIFW as not a problem for them at all. Odd, I would say.

Which brings me back to my original comments about how these 15-year game management plans are a bunch of bureaucratic nonsense being carried out for the single purpose of being eligible for federal money – i.e. blackmail.

I feel badly for the members of the committees working on these plans, that if they don’t know it now, will someday discover, they wasted their time – used, abused and cast aside for personal and financial gain.

There is one thing for certain. Anytime you hear that another committee has been created to study this or study that, it is a definite indication nothing will ever be done or will get resolved from the work. That’s what government is all about. And that ain’t “ODD” at all. Just fact.

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The Right Hand is Blind to the Left Hand – With an Attitude to Boot

Have you often wondered why the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife (MDIFW) even exists and functions at all? I have. But let me be honest. The job is a huge one and MDIFW does many things well. Others? Not so good. I think public relations and communications needs some improvement. What do you think?

In a story and video published at WAGM, Channel 8, Presque Isle, Maine, an MDIFW biologist states: “This [mild winter] is tremendous, not only for deer but all wild life. We know the weather regime is quite rigorous. And winter is a tremendous limiting factor in survivor-ship for all wild life. I guess it boils down to, I’ve never seen anything like it.”

Happy days are here again… and blue skies, nothing but blue skies will I see.

But hang on a minute. Not quite so fast with the jubilation of instant deer management.

WABI TV’s website has another video about the mild winter weather in Maine.

Another MDIFW biologist told the Bangor, Maine television audience that: “Severe weather in any direction is going to have some mild impact on all critters, but people like to make a big deal out of nothing.”

And so, there you have it. You decide if MDIFW needs a bit of help with getting their excuses stories straight.

The mild weather, according to one biologist, is the answer to all things wildlife – all wild life is prosperous. Shhh! Don’t say a word about how that mild winter weather grows winter ticks and slaughters moose by the dozens or more. All wild life benefits.

Because people “like to make a big deal out of nothing,” we should stop being concerned for whether or not Maine’s deer, bear, moose, grouse, turkeys and yes, even, piping plovers are effected by “climate change.” MDIFW seems to have taken on that attitude…or at least some. It must be about keeping the stockholders happy to increase profits.

But you know what pisses me off the most about all of this? I really don’t care that much that MDIFW sends out contradictory information all on the same day, because I know the truth. What angers me most is that last comment shown above: “…but people like to make a big deal out of nothing.” Doesn’t that just stink to high heavens of an elitist biologist, the same ones that never listen to what the sportsmen who actually spend time afield have to say because I’M A BIOLOJEST and I know it all. Maybe if these people changed their attitudes about us low-life commoners, who, by the way, pay their salaries and retirement benefits, are nothing more than an inconvenience, people like me wouldn’t have to keep reminding them that their attitudes suck.

With a $50 million budget, plus lots more money to spend, isn’t it time for that department to have a common public relations person and press secretary where all communications come from?

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A Generation of Idiots? Zombies for Certain

I received an email today, one that has been around the Internet for at least a couple of years. In that email it quotes Albert Einstein as saying, “I fear the day that technology will surpass our human interaction. The world will have a generation of idiots.” Along with this quote are pictures of young people, the majority of whom are engaged with their cellphones and not the people they are with. The photos are below.

It is doubtful that Albert Einstein ever made such a quote, although some believe that he may have made something resembling this and as is the case in today’s Internet circus, someone(s) have taken it upon themselves to edit quotes, or simply make them up in order to stir the emotions of people.

Regardless of if or what Albert Einstein might have said, I’ll steal the quote, change it a bit and present it as an observed fact and my own perception of things, rather than some bit of social prophecy. The day is now hear that technology has surpassed our human interaction. The world has a generation of non thinking, technology-absorbed zombies whose entire lives are controlled by a small piece of electronic gadgetry. It has become the god of choice.

For those that know me well, know that I despise cellphones and basically all mobile devices. Not for what they can do in positive ways, which is very little, but how it has destroyed us as a society. Where once valued, the ability to successfully interact with other humans, to understand their personalities and characters, is a lost and seemingly unimportant and unnecessary part of existence. I pity the person who believes this technology is an equal or better replacement for natural human interaction and interpersonal communication.

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A Day at the Beach

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Cheering on Your Team

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Dinner Out with Friends

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An Intimate Date

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Having Conversation with Best Friend

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A Visit to the Museum

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Enjoying the Sights

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