October 23, 2014

Lookin’ For Love in All the Wrong Places

MooseThreesome

Oh, Bull!

OhBull

Photo by Al Remington

Berryin’ in the “Hood”

MooseInHood

Photo by Al Remington

Loner: All By Hiz “SEF”

LonerMoose

Photo by Al Remington

Tres Hombres

The third amigo didn’t make it into the lens. It’s behind the camera on the other side of the road. Because you can’t see the third hombre, you can’t see that she is blonde. The blonde hombre asks, “How do I get to the other side?” The other, blonde hombre answers, “You are on the other side.”

Enjoy the photo at least.

TresHombres

Photo by Al Remington

Dos Amigos

DosAmigos

Photo by Al Remington

A Hungry Moose

MooseVelvetShed

Photo by Al Remington

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.

Fattening Up for the Long Winter

MooseFatteningWinter

Photo by Al Remington

Is IDFG Placating Idaho Sportsmen?

It’s disgusting that I even need to ask such a question, but how are sportsmen supposed to feel and react when they’ve been lied to, abused verbally, demonized, ignored, laughed at, had tax money stolen from them and basically treated like a piece of worm-infested porcupine scat?

The Idaho Department of Fish and Game (IDFG) is sending out “kits” to moose hunters and asking them to:

1. Take a blood sample,
2. Saw off a slab of moose liver, and
3. Pluck some hair.
BTW – In looking at this letter (posted below), I don’t see anywhere in that letter any instructions on safety precautions needed for when hunters do IDFG’s dirty work. Perhaps it is contained in the kit itself somewhere. If there are readers privy to this information, could you please let me and readers know? It is very important.)

Each hunter then must make a mandatory stop at an IDFG office where each hunter will complete a “MANDATORY” check of the moose. This in addition to the request sent out recently to Idaho sportsmen asking that they report wolf and grizzly bear activity. Really? Why not report polar bear movements or those of penguins? Why now? Why are fish and game officials all of a sudden interested, or seemingly so, in what sportsmen think, see or do?

According to what is written on a letter sent to moose hunters by IDFG, the reason for this action is to: “improve moose management through a better understanding of disease in wildlife populations.

Isn’t it just a little bit too late? Where were these concerned wildlife managers when the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) were lying to the American people telling them that wolves would have no significant impact on game herds or the spread of disease? (Please find this in the Final Environmental Impact Statement for the (re)introduction of wolves to the Northern Rockies.)

The wolf recovery team decided that it would not even bother to offer any kind of investigation into diseases that are carried and spread by wolves because any existing information was: “limited,” “poorly documented” and “can never be scientifically confirmed or denied.” These claims came at a time when there existed no fewer than 300 scientific studies worldwide just about the tapeworm Echinococcus granulosus.

And today the World Health Organization includes on the “Fact Page” that: “More than 1 million people are affected with echinococcosis at any one time.”

When an individual, at least one who has the capacity to think independently, considers how government officials lied to them, and then how they have been treated before, during and after this crime of wolf (re)introduction was forced down their throats, why would they be eager to help these isolated by choice from the global scientific community elites with their fake task of “improve[ing] moose management through a better understanding of disease in wildlife populations”? It sure stinks of mollification to me.

For years these clowns were offered technical and scientific evident to help them “better understand wildlife diseases” and they plugged their ears, closed their eyes and shouted out loud, like a small child.

For crying out loud, back in 1971 wildlife biologists in Minnesota didn’t “discover” that Echinococcus granulosus tapeworms existed. They were out LOOKING FOR IT in moose.

That 1971 study result showed some of us, but evidently nobody at IDFG or USFWS, two distinct things:
1. “The incidence of E. granulosus and Taenia spp. in the northeast is evidence of a higher timber wolf (Canis lupus) population in this part of the state.”
2. “Data from the aerial census and classification counts indicate a net productivity of 30-35% in the northwest and 9-15% in the northeast. This indicates a difference is occurring in the survival rate of calves in their first six months of life between the two areas. Area differences in nutrition, predation and parasitism may be responsible for these observed differences in net productivity.”

Patrick Karns, in 1971, had a “better understanding” of wildlife diseases. It’s 2014, time for some TRUTH for a change!

This and the 600-plus studies in existence in 2001, when the World Health Organization published their latest scientific data on Echinococcus granulosis and Echinococcus multilocularis, evidently isn’t good enough for Idaho wildlife officials, or any others in this here United States of America. But NOW they want to ask Idaho moose hunters for help in better understanding wildlife diseases.

I’m not a resident of Idaho, nor do I buy a hunting license there, but if I did, my inclination would be to tell IDFG to STICK IT! You didn’t listen then and you won’t listen now. You are just trying to pacify the hunters and cover your own asses. No thanks!
IdahoMooseLetter

A tip of the hat to reader “Chandie” for sending me a copy of the letter.