December 22, 2014

Understanding Hunting Etiquette

Compassion

HuntingEttiquette

If I Owned the Woods

Suppose I bought all the woods and hills around a thriving valley where farms and ranches abounded and town families prospered from a mix of agricultural support and several small industrial businesses. Suppose further that all the former owners from whom I had bought the land had been considered part of the greater valley community for generations.

What if I:
– Went to court and closed every road through my property that I could?

– Vegetated every closed road so that travel through my property by anyone from hunters to firefighters was impossible?

– Eliminated all grazing and timber cutting on my property?

– Closed my property to hunting, fishing, and trapping and any access?

– Refused to clean up downed timber after a big storm?

– Refused to spray insect-infested trees, or to remove dead ones?

– Brought cougars, wolves, and grizzly bears onto my property and released them?

– Refused to accept any responsibility for human injuries or dead animals resulting from MY predators?

– Made firefighting access and water availability to fight fires that started on my property unavailable UNLESS the valley residents bought ME airplanes and hired many new employees to work FOR ME when they weren’t fighting MY FIRES that could spread to the valley?

– Went to court and obtained a judgment that because I was not commercial and was considered a charitable, scientific entity that Local and State governments not only could not tell me what to do on my property, they and my neighbors would have to accept any impacts my land use practices imposed on them?

Well, of course:
– Sawmills would close because timber harvests that had gone on for generations ceased.

– Sawyers, like ranch-hands, would become unemployed as timber cutting and grazing acreages disappeared.

– Ranches would steadily dwindle in herd size and then in numbers as forage availability dwindled.

– Farms would dwindle as part-time work in the valley and in The Woods disappeared.

– Businesses would dwindle and disappear as transportation into and out of the valley was constricted.

– Real estate values would plummet as farm land became unprofitable and town homes lacked for buyers since there was no work available and predator problems even in town became endemic. Insurance rates skyrocketed since predator damage was the sole responsibility of the unfortunate citizens damaged in any way.

– Hunting, fishing and trapping disappeared. Businesses for guiding, housing and feeding such folks also dried up as access disappeared and predators both reduced game and posed deadly threats to visitors, children, and others considering outdoor activities.

– Local government and State government revenue of all sorts fell precipitously while demands for government “help” skyrocketed. My land went untaxed since it was “devoted to a higher ideal”, businesses closed up, agriculture dwindled, families moved away or went on welfare, and vacant and “foreclosed” home sites proliferated.

As all this went on, I became more powerful. I bought up parcels all over the valley. While I closed them to any use by local people, I bought, or rented at a discount, properties that would further close roads and pinch off increasingly isolated private property of former ranchers and farmers and long-time residents of the valley. Local government did only what I ALLOWED and I stacked the State Legislature with the best politicians that MY MONEY COULD BUY!

QUESTION: Who am I?
No, I am not Henry Potter. You remember him don’t you? Lionel Barrymore played him in “It’s a Wonderful Life”. He was the evil old cuss that made everyone poor and created that gloomy town where James Stewart (George Bailey) contemplated suicide until the angel showed him how important he (and really EACH OF US is) was to his community.

No, I am not some media mogul or Hollywood gazillionaire buying up rural land and then imposing urban standards and fantasies or rural communities.

I AM UNCLE SAM!

I am the US Forest Service. I am the National Park Service. I am the Bureau of Land Management. I am the US Fish & Wildlife Service. I control over 40% of the United States.

I am steadily eliminating all sustainable uses and management of RENEWABLE natural resources on MY LAND. I am eliminating roads and access on MY LAND. I am ignoring enormous fire-fuel accumulations resulting from Wilderness, Parks, storm damage, Roadless Areas, insect damage. I am closing access and roads everywhere to impede firefighting and public access. I am demanding that already-impoverished taxpayers give me more firefighters and expensive equipment to appear to be fighting fires of increasing magnitude and frequency. I accept NO RESPONSIBILITY (exactly as I have established the legal precedence for damage from the wolves and grizzly bears THAT I INTRODUCED AND SPREAD) for fire damage to residences, towns, and businesses resulting from fires STARTED AS A RESULT OF MY ACTIONS AND INACTIONS ON MY PROPERTY! I have spent over 40 years establishing legal precedents that say State and Local governments cannot tell me what to do or not do on MY PROPERTY. I have financially and professionally seduced State bureaucrats and State politicians to become my secret mistresses for whatever I want to do. I put millions of rural employees and thousands of rural businesses out of work and then vow to “reduce unemployment” and “support small businesses”. I pay no taxes and renege on promises to “replace lost taxes and share revenue with State and Local government”. I breed and release wolves on MY PROPERTY to infest State and private “neighbors” and do likewise with even more deadly and destructive grizzly bears and, like Henry Potter, despise and ridicule the ignorant bumpkins he evicts into the snow.

Uncle Sam has exceeded the slumlord Henry Potter in arrogance and evil. I suggest that when they make the movie one day, they consider cutting and pasting Spencer Tracy from the movie “Dr. Jekyl and Mr. Hyde”. The 4 federal agencies cited above go about like Dr. Jekyl daily making scientific pronouncements and seeming good; while in truth killing and spreading evil nightly before reassuming the sweet appearance of a do-gooder.

Jim Beers
20 August 2012
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Jim Beers is a retired US Fish & Wildlife Service Wildlife Biologist, Special Agent, Refuge Manager, Wetlands Biologist, and Congressional Fellow. He was stationed in North Dakota, Minnesota, Nebraska, New York City, and Washington DC. He also served as a US Navy Line Officer in the western Pacific and on Adak, Alaska in the Aleutian Islands. He has worked for the Utah Fish & Game, Minneapolis Police Department, and as a Security Supervisor in Washington, DC. He testified three times before Congress; twice regarding the theft by the US Fish & Wildlife Service of $45 to 60 Million from State fish and wildlife funds and once in opposition to expanding Federal Invasive Species authority. He resides in Eagan, Minnesota with his wife of many decades.

Jim Beers is available to speak or for consulting. You can receive future articles by sending a request with your e-mail address to: jimbeers7@comcast.net

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?

Fair Chase For Thee But Not for Me

“A Maine hunter featured on Yes on 1 ads in support of the bear referendum has been accused of using non-fair chase tactics while hunting ruffed grouse.

Joel Gibbs, 56, of Lowell, was charged with shooting a firearm from a motor vehicle on Oct. 17 in Masardis, a small town in Aroostook County, after game wardens allegedly witnessed Gibbs shoot at a ruffed grouse through the open window of a vehicle, according to Lt. Dan Scott of the Maine Warden Service.”<<<Read More>>>

The Moose With the Crumpled Horn

It was reported to me, along with the enclosed photograph, that during this season’s moose hunt in Maine, Kenny Brackett of Rangeley bagged this young bull moose showing the crumpled right antler.

CrumpledHorn

The Myth of Compromise

CompromiseHave you ever noticed that both sides of an issue make the claim that the other side refuses to compromise? While remaining uncompromising, one claims the other is at fault because they will not offer a compromise on some emotional issue, like hunting.

However, the bottom of the barrel is revealed in such cases when the one screaming for compromise, while refusing to compromise, finds the other at fault, calling them names or at times, a faux intellectual will attempt to cast aspersions on individuals or groups because of their uncompromising nature.

Here’s a classic example. In an opinion piece, ie. propaganda nonsense, in the Maine Portland Press Herald, a writer, posing as being in support of Question One in the upcoming referendum to ban bear baiting, hounding and trapping, casts his censure onto the hunting community because they refuse to compromise and give this guy at least some of what he wants.

Through it all, I have often said the Achilles heel of the hunting lobby in Maine was the intransigent, no-compromise position they maintained while dismissing any criticism as the work of animal rights extremists.

The thought processes of a person of this nature is quite amazing to someone not so afflicted. This person believes that because he sees something differently than someone else does, it is their duty to at least give in some and let them have their way.

Do we ever see totalitarians, such as this person, compromising his beliefs? Of course not. He doesn’t have to. In his mind, he’s more intelligent than some dumb bear hunter.

Let’s understand this myth of compromise. Don’t get me wrong. There’s a time and a place for compromise and compromising the rock foundations of one’s beliefs, morals and heritage is not a time to implement compromise.

Let’s take one example that some people can understand. Those that can’t are of the thought process of the letter writer in question. Let’s take the Second Amendment as an example.

The Second Amendment, when written, was simple and direct: The right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed. From the very moment that Bill of Right was published, totalitarian socialists have demanded compromise in order to get rid of it. And guess what? They have gotten a lot through compromise because the people have been mind controlled to think that compromise is a good thing; it “gets something done.” Look at where the Second Amendment is today. It doesn’t even resemble “the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.” And when is the last time you saw anti gun lobbyists compromising to give American citizens back their full right to keep and bear arms?

So, here we have a man who thinks, no, he believes, that the “hunting lobby” should cede to him what he wants because he is right and the hunters are wrong?

This is one of the problems with democracy and a progressive lifestyle. Democracy is when the majority forces the minority to do something they don’t want to do. Obviously this letter writer doesn’t like democracy when it isn’t working well for him and therefore he demands compromise. And when democracy fails him, he resorts to all other means in order to get his way.

Hunters should never compromise on such issues because it tears at the heart of hunting’s entire existence. Unfortunately we live in a democracy, which actually more closely resembles totalitarian socialism and no more than hunters should seek to change their “intransigent” ways, neither should the letter writer. And herein, lies the real difference. Where I respect the rights and beliefs of this person but think he is a moron to believe that way, I certainly have no right to attempt to force him to not be able to be an animal rights activist.

Obviously, he and way too many others just like him, don’t feel the same way as I do. Therefore, compromise should never happen.

Maine’s Moose Hunt Opens September 22, 2014

Press Release from the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife:

AUGUSTA, Maine — On Monday, September 22, over a thousand moose hunters will enter the woods, embarking on what many call the hunt of a lifetime.

While Monday marks the first day of moose season in northern and eastern Maine, the moose season is divided into four segments and continues throughout the fall during the weeks of October 13-18, November 3-8 and November 3-29 in southern Maine. In all, 3,095 permits were issued to hunt moose in Maine this year.

Regulated hunting seasons is how the department controls Maine’s moose population, estimated at approximately 65,000 to 70,000 animals. Maine’s moose population is a valued resource, due to the high demands for both viewing and hunting.

The number of permits issued for each moose hunting district varies depending on moose population density in the district and publicly derived populations objectives, such as managing for recreational opportunity (hunting and viewing), road safety (reducing moose-vehicle collisions) or a combination of both.

“By adjusting the number and type of permits available to hunters, we can control the moose harvest and manage population growth,” said Lee Kantar, IFW’s moose biologist. “In the northern part of the state, the goal is to reduce the moose population, and in other areas, stabilize or increase the population.”

Last year, with over 4,000 permits issued, 2,971 moose hunters were successful, translating to nearly three out of every four moose hunters getting a moose. The 72 percent success rate is in stark contrast to bear or deer hunting, where success rates range historically from 18 to 25 percent. Moose hunting in Maine continues to be extremely popular, with over 53,577 hunters applying to the moose lottery for a chance to hunt moose.

This year, the number of moose permits issued to hunters was decreased. The department issued 3,095 permits statewide, down from the 4,110 that were available last year.

“Based upon our research, we felt this was necessary,” said Kantar. “Decreasing the amount of permits will help lessen the impact of winter tick on the state’s moose population.”

In particular, the department decreased the number of antlerless only or cow permits that are available to hunters. Antlerless-only permits were decreased in wildlife management Districts 1-5, 7-9 and 12-13. This is the northern and northwestern part of Maine, including the northern portions of Oxford, Franklin, Somerset, Piscataquis, Penobscot and Aroostook Counties.

Winter ticks have been documented in Maine since the 1930s. Periodically, there are peak years when the number of ticks increased substantially, and last year was a peak year. The number of moose permits were reduced to offset the impact of the high tick year.

All successful moose hunters are required to register their moose at an area tagging station. At these stations, IFW wildlife biologists collect data that provides insight into moose population health.

Biologists will measure antler beam width and diameter. A tooth is removed in order to determine the age of the moose. Ticks are counted on four different areas of the moose to compare numbers to years past. In later weeks, moose hunters who shoot a female moose are required to bring the ovaries, which are examined to determine reproductive success.

This biological data is combined with data from the ongoing moose radiocollar study, as well as the aerial moose population and composition surveys to give biologists a clearer picture of the health and status of Maine’s moose herd.

The Real State Fish and Game Agenda Revealed

*Editor’s Note* – The below article appears in The Outdoorsman, Bulletin #56, April-July 2014. It is republished on this website with permission from the editor of The Outdoorsman. Please help to support the continued publication of this valuable magazine by buying a subscription and/or making a donation. You can do this by clicking the link on the right side of this page, printing out an application and mailing to George Dovel. Thank you.

The few who are able to accept the truth when they read it, know that The Outdoorsman has kept them aware of the 1980 change in state Fish and Game priority from providing continued supplies of wildlife for hunting fishing and trapping, to making non-consumptive wildlife viewing (bird watching, etc.) its number one priority. We have also photocopied and repeatedly published and referred to Jim Unsworth’s 1991-1995 Elk Plan, which boldly stated it was a plan to manage the impacts of people upon wildlife and
wildlife habitat. It also encouraged and promoted non-consumptive use of elk and claimed a single use like harvest was not necessarily a good thing.

The Outdoorsman has presented undeniable proof that officials in IDFG and several hundred from other states’ F&G agencies were trained by FWS and The Nature Conservancy in their West Virginia Training Center to sell our governors on putting Fish and Game biologists in charge of all development on public and private lands. This included implementing the system of wilderness core areas and connecting wildlife corridors.

These biologists were taught, “Instead of being the decision maker on trivial decisions like deer seasons, our primary responsibility must be to be the trusted source to the people, media and political decision-makers on incredibly important decisions like land use, water quality, biodiversity and global climate change.”

We reported how IDFG Director Virgil Moore recently conducted a seminar in the East to teach others how to use the Public Trust Doctrine to replace hunters with non-hunters. We also reported Moore’s working with the MAT (the “Management Assistance Team with offices in the FWS/TNC Training Center in W. Va.) at IDFG Headquarters in Boise to accomplish the transition from managing wildlife to their new “business” of regulating activities on public and private land.

In the latter part of July an eight page document surfaced that was dated May 21, 2014 and titled “Idaho Fish and Game In-Service Training School, Confluence Café Summary.” It said that 500 IDFG employees had participated in its preparation and showed color photos of several large groups participating in the “Confluence Café.”

It contained multiple suggestions to de-emphasize the role of hunters and fishermen and increase the programs available for those who don’t buy licenses. It suggested Nature Walks and Auction Wildlife Viewing trips but admitted that wildlife viewers were not willing to pay for the programs.

There was strong approval for dropping “Fish” and “Game” from the name of the Department and adding something about habitat. There were also numerous suggestions to utilize public funding for the programs they said they wanted to provide, including the lottery and sales tax.

I was privy to the angry reaction from several license buyers, one angry legislator and read several pieces of written testimony. Administrative Chief Barton lied to Sen. Cameron about having surplus money to hire the first nongame biologists, Rita Dixon lied to the Commission about having sufficient donations to pay matching funds for their program, and now they have replaced game biologists so sportsmen can pay some of their cost.

Who are wolf hunters in Yakutia, Russia’s Siberia?

As you might remember, in the early January of 2013, the President of Russia’s Republic of Sakha (Yakutia) Yegor Borisov announced the state of emergency in the Siberian region with regard to the increased number of wolves. He ordered the goverment to take measures and decrease the populatation at amount of 3000 wolves in the following year.

Since that moment, I have started receiving many questions and even international calls about wolves in Yakutia from varies people, news agencies, TV production companies and documentalists, who wished to come and make a film.

Further, find answers to questions describing who wolf hunters are and why they hunt wolves.<<<Read More>>>

Related: Hundreds of wolves shot in east Siberia during hunting season

Wolves, Lead, Hunting & Animal Worship

By Jim Beers
August 21, 2014

I recently circulated an article describing the closure of the last lead smelter in the United States by the federal government based on recent, impossible-to-comply-with Federal environmental regulations. I had received this article from a brother-in-law who, as a retired commercial airline pilot, was primarily concerned about the necessary use of lead in every gallon of aviation gasoline and the effect of increasing prices on airline transportation costs.

As an American hunter and target shooter, I was concerned about not only inevitable increased costs for all manner of ammunition; but also about seeing another element, vital to American society, becoming something America must rely on others providing us through war and peace and political stress. In addition to airplane fuel and hunting, lead is necessary for radiology accessories; batteries; and National Defense weapons, ammunition and support necessities. Thus our future use of lead (a very heavy and therefore expensive item to transport in any manner) will reflect the price of that transportation plus the costs imposed by importers; manufacturer acquisition; customer price competition for products; AND government effects like taxes, import restrictions and quality requirements.

The article and my short note introducing it mentioned that this was also a back-door opportunity for the current federal anti-gun/2nd Amendment Administration in Washington to diminish gun control by making ammunition costs prohibitive. To my surprise, I have received a number of angry e-mails telling me there was no evidence of this being any sort of gun control move. What was most stunning to me was that three of those readers are hunters and shooters. That they would not connect, the attitude of a White House that concocted and covered-up the Fast and Furious scandal while clandestinely negotiating and drafting a UN Small Arms Treaty that would undercut the 2nd Amendment with this opportune elimination of any domestic lead supply set me to thinking.

As our federal government breeds, introduces, spreads and protects wolves over more and more of The Lower 48 States; as they increase and protect deadly and dangerous grizzly bears over increasing rural areas; and as State governments protect and spread mountain lions and coyotes by both total protection and restricting methods of take: the availability of reasonably priced ammunition takes on a surprising urgency:

1. As protected predators increase in numbers and densities, human encounters with children, dog walkers, recreationists, hunters, joggers, fishermen, ranchers, rural residents and others increase and guns are often the only and best final protection during such encounters.

2. As protected predators ravage livestock, guns are often the only or the best property protection tool for animal owners.

3. As protected predators decrease big game (moose, elk, and deer), big game hunting declines.

4. As protected predators kill hunting dogs (among others from watchdogs and pets to show dogs and service dogs) small game hunting declines because of a reluctance to expose the dog to a horrible death by wolves, the growing reluctance of adults to hunt in wolf country, and the reluctance of parents to let rural children and young adults to hunt or otherwise recreate outdoors alone or unsupervised.

5. As #’s 3 and 4 above evolve, current Federal Excise Taxes on ammunition sales (called Pittman Robertson funding) will decrease. These taxes are intended by law only for State Wildlife Programs for Wildlife Restoration. These funds that are hundreds of million annually and which require matching state funds from hunting license sales revenue are the backbone of State wildlife programs and protect these programs from the diversions, corruption and thefts that were once common in state wildlife bureaucracies.

Wolves are THE most destructive (to human safety, game animals, livestock, and dogs) and widespread of the predators spreading across the settled landscapes of The Lower 48 States today. Unavailable or prohibitively expensive ammunition makes personal and family protection less available to rural Americans and hunters. They are simultaneously more vulnerable to attack as livestock are ravaged, dogs are killed and game animals and hunting declines (as government attributes it to “evolving ideas about animals”, “video games”, “progressive thinking”, “”ecosystem awareness”, and fantasies about “apex predators” and “trophic cascades”, etc.)

Despite all this – government gun control; government closing the last lead smelter in the US; and the continuing spread of deadly and destructive predators by government – hunters and shooters, much less rural Americans neither mention nor oppose what government is doing. For some it is because they voted for these things or current politicians in the past; for others it is because their relatives and friends will think poorly of them; for yet others it is because they don’t want to rock the government boat that they depend on more and more; for some it is because they really accept the inevitability of a world without guns in the hands of the citizenry; or they fear a world where government is not fully empowered to “restore native ecosystems” no matter the cost to humans or human society. It is actually a toxic mix of animal worship and a movement by the most powerful among us to make citizens more and more subject to government authority and power.

Wolves, closing the last lead smelter, and hunting are like the racial riots surging in Ferguson, Missouri as I write this. “You are either on this side or that side.” “You either believe this account or that account.” “Either you support (hunting, reasonably priced ammunition and guns, wolves, law-based investigation and just resolution in court) or you oppose these things.” “Don’t try to confuse me with YOUR facts.” “That’s what you think, I know better.” Finally, “Get out of the way, we are in charge and we will protect and spread wolves; we will stop all American smelting of lead; we will make ammunition prohibitively expensive and we will confiscate all guns; and we will do whatever we must to prosecute and punish that policeman no matter what facts emerge in the investigation or in the judicial system.”

The American Constitutional Republic I once knew is devolving into a Darwinian ecosystem ruled by “The Laws of Nature” and described by Thomas Hobbes long ago as a society where life is “nasty, brutish and short.” The rule of law and the supremacy of human life and human values are being replaced by The Law of Survival of the Strongest.

Jim Beers
21 August 2014

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