January 18, 2022

MDIFW Commissioner Opposes SAM Bill LD 1593

Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife commissioner, Chandler Woodcock, submitted testimony in opposition to a Sportsman’s Alliance Bill proposed bill, LD 1593. His opposition appears based on restrictions he believes the bill will place on the Department under certain conditions that would be forced upon the MDIFW, when certain conditions exist.

While the intent of the bill is understandable, the bill does have its problems.

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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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Radical Maine Animal Rights Activist Seeks Investigation of MDIFW/Advisory Committee

John Glowa of South China, Maine, most noted for his off-the-wall advocacy for the protection of all animals (over people), even at the detriment of some animals, has asked Maine Senate President Michael Thibodeau, Maine House Speaker Mark Eves, and Senator Roger Katz, to launch an investigation into the actions of the Legislature’s Committee representing the Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife (MDIFW). Glowa claims, “the committee is unanimously stacked with consumptive users-hunters, trappers, fishermen or supporters of hunting, trapping and fishing.”

Glowa calls for representation on the Committee by non-consumptive users stating that, “There are NO committee members who advocate on behalf of non-consumptive users and on behalf of non-consumptive use of Maine’s fish and wildlife resources.” I think Mr. Glowa is confusing two distinct and separate issues. The MDIFW manages all wildlife, some of which happens to be game species of which Glowa seems to lose sleep over and the idea that some of Maine’s tax payers “consume” specific, designated game species, as part of a proven model of wildlife management. The only place that the advocacy of “non-consumptive” wildlife may have is when wildlife science calls for reductions or elimination of consumption of a species in order to maintain responsible management of the species in question.

Mr. Glowa, and far too many animal advocates, have lost sight of – or never had it in sight before – the fact that had it not been for the formulation of the North American Model of Wildlife Management, in combination with fish and game departments, funded mostly by sportsmen, some of whom happen to be consumptive users and some non-consumptive users, the complainant wouldn’t have anything to complain about.

Proper game and wildlife management sometimes calls for the reduction of specie populations in order to sustain a healthy proportion of animals in question. Non-consumption has no part in proper scientific management of wildlife. Non-consumptive use is a political term coined in order to promote the radical, post-normal, ideals of animal rights activists and carries with it not an ounce of actual wildlife science and responsible management.

If it so happens that MDIFW, or any fish and game department, goes about it’s management plans in a way that, without putting the species in question at risk, increases their revenue in order to improve upon their management goals, how can any such action be considered NOT in the best interest of Maine taxpayers AND the wildlife?

It should be for these reasons alone that no followers of political, animal rights idealism, should be permitted to participate in decision making about scientific hunting, fishing and trapping management.

Upon examination of the words contained in two letters sent by Glowa to Thibodeau, Eves and Katz, one can find that the author believes that consumptive use of natural resources is not advocating for the resource. On the contrary and it has been proven for several decades now in what is a model of wildlife management that is the envy of the world. Again, this is nothing more than a representation of an individual’s political idealism, and not scientific, views of how tax payers choose to make the best use of their natural resources. In this case, the small amount of “consumptive” use, is a windfall for everyone and should be promoted not destroyed as is being suggested.

In an addendum to the original request for an investigation, Glowa, empty-handed when it comes to wildlife science to support his political views, distorts facts in an attempt to sell others on the misrepresented claim that there are more wildlife watchers who spend more money than do hunters, trappers and fishermen. Glowa states, “wildlife watchers spend some $800 million annually in Maine, far more than is spent by hunters and fishermen combined.” Any use of these numbers is a dishonest representation of the actual data compiled in reference to the subject.

It should be understood by readers that the collective term “wildlife watcher” if formed into “Wildlife Watcher,” meaning an actual group or member(s) of a group who specifically and purposefully go “wildlife watching,” that is, in the exact same fashion as one goes hunting, trapping and/or fishing, then figures from that activity could be derived and used in comparison, i.e comparing apples to apples, etc.

When the surveys are done to compile the information referenced, anybody who said that on any outing in Maine, they saw a wildlife animal, that was registered as a wildlife watcher, not necessarily a Wildlife Watcher.

Of the claimed $800 million spent annually on “wildlife watching,” the dishonesty comes in that people did NOT spend $800 million specifically to go watch Maine wildlife. It’s easier to track hunters, trappers and fishermen because they buy licenses, the money of which is used to properly manage healthy game species – a benefit to all Maine people including those who enjoy catching a glimpse of a deer on the way to grandma’s house – of which that “glimpse” gets recorded as “wildlife watching.” Shame, shame.

Perhaps the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife and the Legislative Committee are guilty of some wrongdoing and, more than likely are guilty of corruption at some level – after all it is politics – I don’t see how refusing to place (if that is actually what has happened) non-consumptive users, real or fake, on this committee makes them crooks. In actuality, I would commend the committee for keeping the best interest of scientific wildlife management at the focus of their work and not oiling of some squeaky-wheel, politically-driven, advocate of non-consumptive (anti-hunting, trapping, fishing) resource use.

Normal life, calls for the responsible USE, U-S-E of natural resources. To deny anyone consumptive use of game animals, as part of a proven, scientific program, is advocating for scarcity, which is nothing more than advocating for the destruction life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.

It is the advocacy and promotion of death!

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Deer management study raises eyebrows, plenty of questions

The following is the very last paragraph in an article written by V. Paul Reynolds and published in the Sun Journal. After reading what this paragraph says, is it any wonder why Maine’s deer herd is going to hell in a hand basket?

I would suppose it’s more important to spend money and staff flying around in helicopters counting deer to verify the fact that deer managers stink at the task of actual deer management in order to further hunting opportunities (after all, it’s what pays their salaries).

Maybe if wildlife managers took a closer look at piping plovers and did a better job of counting bats and butterflies, somehow from that maybe they can figure out how better to grow deer. It seems that’s the method in play, along with waiting on that global warming.

How’s that all working out for you anyway?

As you might guess, this report — which has not had much media scrutiny that I know of — raises as many questions as it answers. When I asked wildlife managers in Augusta to react to this somewhat controversial study, I was told that other priorities have been in play, and so far there has not been the staff or the time to assess the study, or weigh its findings against contemporary deer management goals.

Source: Deer management study raises eyebrows, plenty of questions | Sun Journal

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MDIFW Will Resume Capture and Radio-Collaring Moose

Press Release from Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife:

AUGUSTA, Maine — Starting next week, The Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife will take to the air in year two of an intensive five-year moose study that will provide a greater understanding of the health of Maine’s moose population, particularly factors that impact their survival and reproductive rates.

A trained crew that specializes in capturing and collaring large animals is utilizing a helicopter and launched nets to capture and collar female moose and calves in an area located in and around Jackman and Greenville (centered in Wildlife Management District 8).

“By radio-collaring moose and actively monitoring their movements, we can further understand the factors that can impact Maine’s moose population,” said IFW moose biologist Lee Kantar.

The radio collar study is just one component of the research that IFW conducts on moose. IFW also utilizes aerial flights to assess population and the composition of the moose herd. During the moose hunting season, biologists also examine teeth to determine a moose’s age, measure antler spread, monitor the number of ticks a moose carries, and examine ovaries to determine reproductive rates.

Depending on the weather, the crew plans to start next week, and they plan to capture and then collar 3 adult female moose (cows) and 35 moose that were born this past spring (calves) with GPS collars that will track and broadcast their movements to IFW biologists.

This is the second year that the crew from Aero Tech, Inc. will work in Maine capturing and collaring moose. Aero Tech specializes in this type of capture and collaring, and is currently performing a similar job in New Hampshire. The crew, based out of New Mexico, consists of a team of four, with each having a specialized role in the process.

Prior to their arrival, Kantar and several other IFW biologists will fly and scout different areas of WMD 8 in order to locate cow-calf groups. This pre-capture scouting worked very well last year by providing GPS coordinates to Aero Tech pilots who were able to fly to these areas, and capture and collar moose with an increased efficiency that decreases their time in the air, and the number of days they fly.

Last year, the department collared 30 adult cows and 30 calves.

Once collared, the GPS-enabled collars transmit twice a day, providing biologists the ability to track moose movements. The GPS collars are expected to transmit movement signals for four years. If there is no movement for a certain period of time, the collar transmits a mortality signal, and biologists will then travel by foot to investigate the cause of death.

“Once we receive a mortality signal, we locate the dead moose within 24 hours,” said Kantar. Biologists conduct an extensive field necropsy on each moose, taking blood, tissue and fecal samples that will later be analyzed by the University of Maine-Animal Health Lab as well as other specialized diagnostic facilities,.

This is the second year of the monitoring study. Additional moose and calves will be captured and collared next year.

“This project is just one component of the Department’s multi-faceted moose management system. It provides us with another important tool to ensure we have the most relevant data needed to manage our moose population,” said Kantar.

Upon locating fresh footprints in the snow along the railroad tracks near Wilson Street, Penobscot County Deputy Ryan Allen deployed his K9, Dozer, on the track. Approximately 1.5 hours and nearly two miles later, Deputy Allen located Webb in a large piece of woods between Wilson Street and Bagaduce Road. Webb was very cold, disoriented and not dressed for the extreme cold weather. Maine Game Wardens responded with an ATV and 4-wheel drive trucks to remove Webb from the woods. Capital Ambulance transported him to St. Joseph’s Hospital to be treated for a substantially decreased core body temperature.

Lt. Dan Scott of the Maine Warden Service attributed the quick thinking and teamwork of the first responding units to saving the man’s life. Lt. Scott commented, “With temperatures hovering around zero and wind-chills near -15 below, the man would likely not have survived a night in the woods.” The Maine Warden Service reminds us that hypothermia can set in very rapidly in the extreme temperatures we have been experiencing. People should monitor themselves and especially young children for the signs of frostbite and hypothermia. Anyone recreating outdoors should dress accordingly, take a friend, and tell someone where they plan to go and when they plan to return.

MooseCollaring

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Maine Ethics Commission Wants Transparency to End Bear Baiting

In reading an article in the Bangor Daily News, the article attempts to report that the Maine Ethics Commission wants more “transparency” when it comes to efforts by any government agency in the state participating in political activities. At issue here is the backlash from a lawsuit filed by the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS), in the middle of a campaign to end bear hunting, to try to stop the Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife (MDIFW) from participating against the referendum.

The result of the lawsuit was that it was legal for MDIFW to do what they were doing. However, the Mainers for Fair Bear Hunting, a fake coalition that was comprised only of HSUS members, asked the Maine Ethics Commission to investigate. And so they did but didn’t have to.

The Ethics Commission is trying very hard here to paint themselves as investing the “ethics” of actions by the MDIFW because they did not disclose all associated costs of the campaign to the liking of the commission. But from what is written in this article, I have serious doubts that the Commission is all that interested in transparency as they are about ending the practice of allowing any government representative to participate in such future campaigns.

It seems really stupid to prohibit government departments, as a form and function of the greater administration, to silence their position on political events such as was the case with the bear referendum. Don’t the people want to know where an administration stands in such matters? One might understand the request that the MDIFW reveal all associated costs to participate in this campaign, under the laws of the state. The appearance of trying to hide something gets us into the function of an ethics panel. However, it seems to me the Ethics Commission is taking on the role of strong-arming the MDIFW by proposing legislation that would prohibit the practice of participation. This goes beyond any kind of transparency request about funding and delves into issues in which one would have to wonder if the Ethics Commission needs an ethics commission to investigate what they are doing.

It certainly appears to me that in a 4-1 vote, the commission is more interested in ending bear hunting during the next useless anti-human bear referendum that comes up, than anything much related to transparency.

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Maine IFW Hunting Report For November 21, 2014

This report is issued by the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife:

Southern Lakes Region – Region A

“Hunters are seeing plenty of deer. Some hunters are being selective right now and passing on does or smaller bucks,” said IFW Wildlife Scott Lindsay. “Usually around now, we will start to see more of these hunters taking deer.”

Lindsay said that while numbers may be down a bit from last year as expected, hunters are still seeing good numbers of deer and good size ones as well.

“While there haven’t been any huge deer, we are seeing plenty of deer in the 200-210 pound range throughout our region,” said Lindsay. “We are even seeing some of these large deer in some of our more developed coastal towns.”

Pheasant season is still ongoing, with more releases of pheasants planned for the Bragdon site in Wells and Blackberry Hill area in Berwick. Hunters are reminded that a pheasant stamp is needed to hunt pheasants. For more information on the pheasant hunting program, please visit: http://www.maine.gov/ifw/hunting_trapping/hunting/pheasant.htm.

Central and Midcoast Maine

In central Maine, many deer hunters continue to find success after some early season struggles with heavy snow.

“I know things are going well because I haven’t heard any complaints,” said IFW wildlife biologist Keel Kemper.

Kemper said that some tagging stations and meat cutters are up from last year, and other areas are down. It has been an odd deer season, as some areas had upwards of 16 inches of snow early in the deer season.

“We had a slow start to the season, but since the snow has melted, things are coming along,” said Kemper. While most hunters enjoy a tracking snow, 16 inches of it was too much of a good thing.

Kemper said that while he has seen good numbers of deer, he has only seen a “smidgeon” of deer over 200 pounds so far. He expects that to change “as the rut is starting, and the bucks are chasing does.”

Waterfowl hunters in the area are also having success, with good wild rice crops at the Ruffingham Meadow Wildlife Management Area in Searsmont as well as other places.

Downeast Region

Downeast, it seems like old times.

“Things are going well…Down along the coast, it’s like the old traditional deer season,” said IFW wildlife biologist Tom Schaeffer.

Schaeffer said there seems to be a noticeable difference this year with more people driving around dressed in orange, and the occasional deer hanging in a successful hunter’s yard.

“The effort is very noticeable this year, mostly in the central and western part of Washington county,” said Schaeffer.

Already Schaeffer said he has seen a good crop of yearling deer and younger bucks.

“The younger aged deer are well-represented. If we get a continuation of some decent winters, coastal Washington County could be better than it has been in a long time,” said Schaeffer.

For the first two weeks of the season, Schaeffer noted that it was the best deer hunting conditions he has seen since 1988. He said there has been tracking snow for much of the season, cool weather, and more importantly, there hasn’t been a lot of warmth, wind and rain.

“Last Saturday was a fantastic day with the tracking snow,” he added.

Of note, Schaeffer recently saw on 234 pound buck, as well as a hefty 257 pound buck. He figures he might see a couple more of them before the season ends.

Rangeley Lakes and Western Mountains Region

Seems to be business as usual in the western mountains regions of Maine.

“We’ve had good conditions as it is still cold, with snow through most of the region,” said IFW wildlife biologist Chuck Hulsey. “We’ve had some great days to hunt, with some soft snow at times.”

Hulsey has been gathering biological data from harvested deer throughout the region. This gives biologists insight into the health of the deer herd.

He’s gathered samples from private citizens with deer hanging on their property, meat cutters, taxidermists and others.

Hulsey will take note of the general condition of the deer, including fat content, and talk with hunters to find out more about what they are seeing, how hunters are faring, and other related info. In some cases, biologists will remove a gland to test for chronic wasting disease, and with freshly killed deer, may draw a blood sample to test for eastern equine encephalitis.

Checking harvested deer is invaluable as it provides both biological data with the deer, and anecdotal evidence concerning hunter effort and participation.

All this data is combined to give a clearer picture of the age structure and health of the deer herd, and gives the department the tools they need to manage the deer population.

Moosehead Region

Three-quarters of the way through deer season, there are some good signs in the Moosehead region.

“Things are pretty good. We are seeing more deer in the southern part of the region, and more deer in the northern part,” said IFW wildlife biologist Doug Kane. Oddly enough, there have been fewer deer registered this year right in the Greenville area.

“I think hunters are seeing deer throughout the region, so they are traveling outside of Greenville because they are optimistic,” said Kane.

Conditions are good throughout the region, as there was snow from Monson north earlier this week. Hunters have been using it to locate where deer are already congregating, or to track a buck. Kane did mention that with the cold weather, it was a bit noisy in the woods.

For the next two weekends, Kane and other IFW personnel will be setting up a check station at the Greenville rest area where they will check between 20 and 30 deer on both Saturday and Sunday.

The biological data gathered gives biologists insight into the health of the deer herd in the region. They also gather a lot of anecdotal data on what hunters are seeing not only for deer, but for moose and grouse as well.

Penobscot Region

“Deer season is going pretty well,” said IFW wildlife biologist Mark Caron in the Penobscot region. “We are getting a lot of good reports of hunters seeing deer, both does and bucks.”

Caron thinks that deer in his region may have fared through the past winter a little better than initially believed. “The deer got a break when we had the thaw midwinter, and even though winter hung on into April, they did not burn as much fat.”

Throughout the region, all of the tagging stations appear to be doing fairly well.

“We had all that snow, and that tracking was good, which helped many hunters,” said Caron.

Caron noted that there was on monster buck killed last weekend. It was a 19 point, 254-pound buck shot in Prentiss. He also got reports of another 200 pounder that was shot in Stacyville. The condition of the deer that Caron has seen are good, with plenty of fat, as it was a decent year for apples and acorns where they appear in the region.

If you have already tagged out with your deer, Caron says that the duck hunting has been very good this year, with whistlers coming in heavy over the Penobscot, and mallards still around big time. Some ponds are skimming over, congregating birds for a bit, but they usually are opened up again by evening.

Aroostook Region

A mid-week snowfall left two to three inches of snow on the ground in most of the Aroostook region, and deer hunters in the area are doing well.

“Registration stations are having one of their better years up here,” said IFW wildlife biologist Rich Hoppe. “We may not be seeing the number of hunters that we have seen in years past, but the deer hunters up here are quite content, and the deer population still seems to be on the upswing.”

Hoppe expects the good hunting to continue, with the recent snow, and the deer beginning to move with the onset of the rut this past week.

Hoppe says he has seen quite a few crotch-horns and spike horns from hunters who have been hunting along the edges of fields and roads. He’s checked larger deer, and those are coming from hunters who are getting off the roads and deeper into the woods.

Bird season goes till the end of December and bird hunters are still finding success along hedgerows in the woods. There’s still fruit on many trees, said Hoppe, and birds seem to be all over the place. “We’ve had a very good bird year as well,” said Hoppe.

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Anti-Hunting Group’s Actions Carry a High Cost for MEDIFW & Maine’s Economy

Press Release from Save Maine’s Bear Hunt:

Augusta, Maine- In a shocking move, Mainers for Fair Bear Hunting has decided to appeal a recent decision to deny a temporary restraining order that sought to muzzle the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife from informing the public about the risks behind Question 1.

“Justice Wheeler’s decision could not have been more definitive, noting that statutory language explicitly directs the Department to advocate its positions regarding bear management,” said James Cote, Campaign Manager for the Save Maine’s Bear Hunt/NO on 1 Campaign. “This is nothing more than frivolous court filing to generate headlines. They didn’t get their way last Friday in court, so they’ve decided to drag our incredibly experienced professionals at MEDIFW through the mud. I think Maine people will see right through that type of Beltway political strategy.”

The irony is that while the Washington DC -financed Mainers for Fair Bear Hunting objects to the use of any taxpayer dollars connected with Question 1, the endless lawsuits and motions and requests for information have cost the department tens of thousands of dollars and countless labor hours.

“The information that the proponents have requested consists of tens of thousands of files that is taking the Department well over 500 hours to sort through,” explained Cote. “And all of this is nothing more than a fishing expedition in a fading hope they will find useful information to attack Maine’s bear experts.”

If the public is concerned about the money being spent on this campaign, all eyes should be on Mainers for Fair Bear Hunting. More than 98 percent of their money is coming from the Humane Society of the United States in Washington DC, the organization that is trying to buy this election based on emotion, not facts, to further their national anti-hunting agenda.

“The money being spent by HSUS to buy this election is unprecedented and insulting. They are spending millions to eliminate the most effective methods of controlling our bear population and threatening hundreds of jobs and small businesses— almost $53 million in economic impact,” said Cote. “We don’t think Maine voters will let a Washington DC special interest group buy this election. Vote No on Question 1.”

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MDIFW Commissioner Opposes Question One

“You are not going to hunt them like deer. If you think you are going to walk in the woods and follow them you are wrong,” Woodcock said, as additional measures mentioned in the referendum question are needed to have a chance at getting a bear. “Hunting over bait is probably one of the best and most ethical ways to hunt. You have a choice of what you want to do.”<<<Read More>>>

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Threats Against IFW Employees Enough to Hire L.E. Protection?

It appears as though some employees of the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife (MDIFW), in particular those who have been in the forefront of addressing facts about bear management, have been receiving “troubling correspondence.” While details remain sketchy, one can only conclude that the threats are coming from those who support totalitarian socialistic governance, via gang warfare.

The sad part of this event is that public meetings, along with private ones, have been cancelled due to the threats which claims victory for the sad excuse for human beings that resort to such caveman tactics.

It is quite ironic that these morons probably also support the Humane Society of the United States’ lawsuit and demand for emergency injunction to stop MDIFW from using department resources to tell the truth about Maine’s bear management needs and the 40-year bear study they have been administering. And yet, because of this action, even more resources are having to be used to protect these people from the knuckle draggers who are sending “troubling correspondence.”

A bit more information on this event can be found here and here.

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