August 8, 2020

Profound? Maine Moose Biologist Theorizes Fewer Moose Means Fewer Deadly Winter Ticks

For at least a decade I have been beating a drum that Global Warming is NOT the cause of Maine’s – and other state’s – increase in the winter tick which is killing off the moose population – a natural occurrence. My proclamation has been that if the state would reduce the moose population to a sensible level, one that actually meets the real “carrying capacity” of the habitat, we would, in turn, see the tick population decrease and result in a healthier bunch of moose.

After all these years, according to the Portland Press Herald, Maine’s lead moose biologist is suggesting a “study” to prove or disprove his thesis that fewer moose would make for fewer ticks and a healthier moose population.

WOW! PROFOUND!

Here are some issues of which I have concerns about. First, the proposal is to conduct the study within half a hunting zone…District 4. Is this a large enough study area to achieve viable data to prove or disprove anything?

Second, can ANY study be legitimate if those conducting the study are still so deeply mired in the nonsense that ticks have increased due to a warming planet? I know the answer to that question…NO!

Third, it is getting to the point that moose study after moose study has resulted in conclusions that we have already known. Collaring of moose in two general regions of Maine has shown mortality rates for the animals. The data seem to indicate that the moose population is continuing to decline and it is believed that declination is due to the winter tick…mainly that tick mortality on moose is destroying the moose calf survivability rate.

Terrific! So, why doesn’t somebody begin conducting some real studies of the winter tick? It is terrible science to continue with more moose studies about ticks when nobody knows, or refuses to understand, about the winter tick. Any real tick studies are old. All new tick “studies” are nothing more than offering lip service about the tick based on cherry picked pieces of data from ancient tick studies that conveniently fit the modern narrative of Global Warming. This kind of work is either criminal or just plain lazy ignorance.

The senseless beating of a dead horse about global warming just isn’t getting the job done because it is promoting a false thesis, unprovable and extremely political. Every study that I have read about the winter tick disproves any theory about its growth due to “Global Warming.” Ticks grow and proliferate in regions of cold much farther north than Maine and much farther south. The winter tick, Dermacentor albipictus, is prolific all over the world, seemingly viable in most any climate…hot, dry, wet, etc. Calling for “old fashioned” winters in Maine will do nothing to mitigate the tick problem. Without real knowledge about the tick, how can an honest study be conducted on the effects of the tick on moose by only examining and tracking the moose?

I would suppose that after six years of moose studies, to finally reach a point where one biologist proposes a theory about the relationship between moose numbers and ticks should be examined, is a good thing. My concerns I have just listed, which are substantial, leaves us, before any study has begun, wondering of what value any data collected would have.

One has to even wonder if these new studies are simply just another way to promote the man-controlled thesis of Global Warming?

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Maine Has Black Bears…And a Few Fools

When I was a very young boy, I recall one time going to the grocery store with my mother. While there, I witnessed another young boy, perhaps a year or two younger than me (4 or 6), throw himself to the floor of the store, screaming, crying and eventually banging his head against the floor, in a fit of uncontrolled rage, simply because he wanted something on the shelf his mother would not let him have.

Quietly, the mom pushed her cart to the front of the store, spoke briefly with the cashier, left her partially-filled cart for when she intended to return, and dragged the boy outside and then…I don’t know what happened. I’m guessing what happened might have been pretty close to what my mother said to me when I asked her what the mom was going to do. Her response went something like: If you ever do that, you may not ever live long enough to see your next birthday.

Things have changed, and depending on one’s perspective, not for the better.

Let’s shift up gears for a moment and examine the acts of adults – perhaps those that didn’t fully grow up from the days of temper tantrums. These days some adults mostly resemble the actions of the 4-year-old screaming, banging his head, and demanding his own way.

Most adults love to extol the wonders of what they call democracy…but only when it is beneficial to prop up an ideology and the narrative that goes along with it. Most really cannot comprehend what a democracy is but love it when it works for them. What a selfish society we have crafted.

The American Governments, federal and state, misrepresent to the citizen slaves that they have certain “rights” (actually privileges of which can be taken away as easily as given out), among them the “right to petition the state.”

This can work well in a civilized society that isn’t manipulated into little locust totalitarians, the likes of which are as the 4-year-old banging his head and demanding his way. Regardless, the spoiled totalitarian, brought up under the banner of repetitive petitioning, goes about his or her demonstrations with the belief that regardless of what the majority have spoken in their “democratic” society, they will get what they want one way or another.

So what’s wrong with that you might ask? Well, nothing, actually. It is the system that has been created and we are subjected to all of its bad points and very few good ones. For me, it’s all about the approach and methodology used in demanding one’s way.

Maine has weathered two anti-hunting bear referendums within the past 16 years. Both times, the voters of Maine have said they don’t want little spoiled totalitarians telling those that are paid to manage the state’s wildlife, how to do it. But that doesn’t stop the little spoiled totalitarians.

Many of those spoiled totalitarians simply do not approve of hunting, fishing, trapping…basically any kind of what they might call consumptive use of wildlife and natural resources. That’s fine. It’s their uncontrolled desire to force all others to accept and abide by their political ideals, etc. Regardless as to whether years of wildlife science and management has proven that consumptive use of natural resources, when done responsibly, is a major benefit to the people and to the wildlife, spoiled totalitarian anti hunters, incapable of mounting an actual provable scientific basis for demanding an end to hunting, fishing, and trapping, have no other alternative than to resort of lying and playing on the emotions of ignorant people.

In the second of the two bear hunting referendums that Maine residents and the Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife (MDIFW) endured, the MDIFW did a very respectable job of hitting the pavement to educate voters that due to the very large bear population in the state, the department needs every tool and resource it can to try to keep the population at a safe and healthy level. One of those tools that still remains a necessity in that effort, is placing baits for hunters to hunt over. It’s not how I would personally choose to bear hunt, but I understand the need to reduce the number of bears and I would never attempt to prevent anyone from participating in a legal hunting activity simply to force them to accept my ideology. That is selfish, childish, and actions of a fool.

The overwhelming majority of bears taken during the hunting and trapping seasons are done so with the use of bait. Baiting bears may not be the weapon of choice in controlling bear numbers, but until such time as the MDIFW is able to find another way of controlling bears, the managers in Augusta have continued to promote the need for this harvest tool.

Without baiting bears, harvest numbers, more than likely, would be reduced by at least half, adding even more and more bears to forests and fields that would indeed increase the already troublesome bear and human encounters that pose a threat to human safety.

Recently I read yet another Letter to the Editor in a Maine newspaper from one of those loud-mouthed, spoiled totalitarians who hates anything he doesn’t agree with…including hunting, fishing, and trapping.

If this man had his way, all hunting, fishing, and trapping would end and he would import wolves, mountain lions, and probably saber-toothed tigers.

He is one of those totalitarians who can’t seem to find real science to support his agenda and so he relies on the echo-chambers of the scientismist’s to promote false, outcome-based, bought and paid for, unprovable theories to promote his agenda to put an end to bear hunting and other pet projects.

His latest “petition” to the State of Maine, to change the rules of bear hunting, would, over a 10-year period of time, outlaw what he has now chosen to call bear “feeding” instead of calling it what it really is…which is bear baiting as part of the necessary process to reduce bear populations.

It appears the reason for petitioner’s upside down and backwards approach to lying to the public about bears and wildlife science, surrounds around the false, outcome-based, over-simplified, study, done in extremely general terms with no specificity in the study that is used as a broad, sweeping, brush stroke across all species, that when there is ample “food” available for wildlife, it causes those species to reproduce at higher than “normal” rates. Even to the effect that such dynamics might exist, there is no science that indicates, because it is near impossible to do, what, if any, the rate of increase in reproduction would be.

Evidently, the author of the petition now believes that if he calls bear baiting, bear feeding, it somehow has a different affect on the bears and their population, but more importantly it probably will have a false affect on public opinion and I’m sure that is what he is hoping to achieve.

In his Letter to the Editor, the author claims that bears in Maine now exceed the “natural carrying capacity” by 10,000 bears, but offers no information as to what this claim is based on. Carrying capacity, a complex algorithm to determine how many of any species of wildlife is desired by wildlife managers to live within any given habitat and/or ecosystem, cannot be implemented in shear numbers. It’s far to sophisticated which can become extremely troublesome.

No matter the complexity of carrying capacities, the petitioner blames the fact that his claim of 10,000 too many bears is the fault of MDIFW, bear hunters, and guides who use “food” for attracting bears for hunting.

The fact that actual bear baiting involves a very small comparative geographic region, including lots of bear habitat, that any “feeding” of bears for hunting purposes is so negligible it is not thought to have any real effect on the state’s bear population. To even suggest placing baits within strategic hunting locations would “feed” enough of the estimated 50,000 bears to effect bear reproduction is actually quite a silly supposition and certainly any such suggestion is not, and cannot be supported by actual science.

This totalitarian, in his insistent ignorance, states matter of factly: “Feeding bears produces more bears. This is the science.” He then demands an end to the state’s “bear feeding program.”

Only a fool, and there are too many of them, would claim that feeding bears produces more bears and that it is proven science. It is not. It is not as simple as that. One of the most difficult aspects of managing wildlife is the fact that everything about what we like to call an ecosystem is constantly changing with almost none of the changing things something that we, as managers, can control. All we really have at our disposal are well-planned, science-based hunting seasons to control populations. Even those proved problematic at times.

At best, our wildlife managers try to figure out how many of any game species there are and then to go about doing what is needed to keep those populations under control for the health of the species and for public safety. I don’t very often let the MDIFW off without having my say, but right now, I agree with them that they NEED to be able to use baiting bears to control the population. I also think that if the MDIFW believed baiting bears was causing the population to grow, they would end the practice. They have repeatedly stated the need to kill more bears. I think they have other methods available to them but refuse to use them due to social demands…which is wrong on many counts. One might think a large group of biologists and wildlife managers have more collective knowledge about how bears reproduce than one disgruntled man.

If the bear population in Maine was so low, the managers would put an end to hunting and trapping them. They do this with any game species. I would support that move providing the MDIFW has the data to show the need. Right now, the MDIFW has the data to show more bears need to be harvested each season and “feeding” bears (use of bait) is not what is causing the bears to grow in numbers.

Give it rest already and let’s encourage the MDIFW to provide more bear hunting opportunities…the ONLY way to reduce those “10,000” bears.

Below is a copy of the suggested rule changes for bear baiting and bear hunting. I would encourage as many as possible to contact the MDIFW, as there is a comment period, and share your thoughts and ideas about this petition. Thanks!

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Maine Biologists Concerned About Ticks on Deer But Not on Moose

The more I watch the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife (MDIFW) biologists operate, the more I just simply wonder what it is these people are learning, from whom are they learning it, and then I ask myself why I should have any confidence at all that any wildlife management plan is worth more than a pile of moose dung.

It doesn’t take a lot of brains to come to the conclusion that the deer population in Maine is mostly concentrated in the southern half of the state, and that southern sector could be pared down to a concentration of deer in the center of the state. It is understandable then that should the state wish to reduce the deer population, claiming it is now approaching 300,000 (I seriously doubt that), it needs to be done in areas where there are too many deer. That chore is impossible to achieve because there’s not enough open-to-hunting land in these high deer population areas – that’s why there’s too many deer. Increasing “Any-Deer Permits” (ADP) is kind of like what happens when a feller decides to relieve himself while facing a brisk wind.

But, that doesn’t stop the biologists from trying.

I was reading an article in the Portland Press Herald this morning about how MDIFW intends to allot 109,890 ADPs. In 2018, the MDIFW set a new record in ADP allotments shelling out 84,745 ADPs. That year was the ONLY time in MDIFW history of utilizing ADPs to manage the deer population (since the mid-80s), that MDIFW actual met their objective of doe kills.

But is this really the issue here?

Let’s look at MDIFW’s previous statements about how it intends to manage wildlife now that we live in an environmentalist’s post-normal idiotic wildlife management era.

Not that long ago, MDIFW let the public know they no longer intend to count wildlife and use that knowledge as part of their wildlife management plans. Instead, their belief is that if they concentrate on a Kumbaya approach toward sensing the overall health of the herd, that will be good enough. No, really! That’s what they told us.

And yet, in the Portland Press Herald article, the head deer biologist said that the statewide deer population in Maine is close to 300,000. Evidently guessing at the deer population is good enough to justify to the citizens of Maine why the MDIFW intends to issue nearly 110,000 ADPs. Can’t they confirm their deer management goals and what needs to be done to control the population in places where you can’t hunt, by gaining a sense of the overall health of the deer herd? BALDERDASH!!!!!!!!

In the same news report, the same head deer biologist says that in 2018 when the MDIFW decided to issue 85,000 ADPs one of the reasons was because of concerns about “tick-borne diseases in southern and central Maine” in which biologists attribute to too many deer that can carry ticks that spread Lyme disease.

And yet, Maine’s moose population is being systematically decimated due to too many winter ticks. Now granted, I do have enough brains to understand that the ticks the deer carry, can spread a disease that is harmful to people and that, as far as we know, winter ticks on moose are not harmful to people but…but…but…what about the health of the herd? Who cares how many moose there are, even though moose populations are directly proportional to the number of winter ticks, just as biologists believe the number of deer is directly proportional to the spread of Lyme disease? And we have a wildlife management department that doesn’t think counting animals has much benefit?

Does it make any sense at all that wildlife managers are telling us one thing and seemingly doing something else, while at the same time can’t seem to figure out the correlation between deer and moose populations and ticks?

Why should we believe or trust to believe anything these people are doing and saying? Maybe it’s all driven by money? Maybe. Maybe not. Is there money to be made is caving in to the demands of environmentalists, telling the public one thing and doing another? Last time I checked, there are no licenses and fees required to become an environmentalist.

It’s all frustrating as hell.

Evidently a member of Maine’s IFW Advisory Council asked why the state didn’t return to an either sex hunting season, where any licensed hunter can shoot either sex of deer…like we used to and the way other states have done in attempts to reduce their deer numbers (evidently other states are still counting deer?). The answer was put this way. The head deer biologist said that if allotting 110,000 ADPs doesn’t take care of meeting the goal of doe kills, “other methods of thinning the herd will be considered.” This was followed by this highly scientific explanation (rolling the eyes here), “I think it would be hard to take a step back from that once you go in that direction.”

Please correct me if I’m wrong here as I’m not a certified deer biologist or a wildlife manager. I believe what the deer biologist/manager is saying is that should efforts taken in adjusting the issuing of ADPs doesn’t meet management goals, the choices would be better to sit on their asses and do nothing rather than “take a step back” to try something else. Who decided that trying another management strategy was taking a step back?” And why was this person hired as a head deer biologist? And why are any of them paid money for what they do?

If portions of southern and central Maine have too many deer (of course I still don’t know how the MDIFW knows this because they told us they don’t count wildlife anymore) then something ought to be done to reduce numbers. There is no reason that any of us should have much faith in deer manager’s decisions and the stupid excuses they use to justify their actions. Then when it’s all over, they can make up any story they want to cover their butts.

Is the MDIFW using this issuing of a ridiculous number of ADPs, hoping more hunters will apply for a permit, simply a money making scheme? One has to ask.

Some day, my dream will be that even though winter ticks don’t make humans sick, that we know of yet, biologists will figure out that reducing the number of moose will directly result in fewer ticks, just like with deer. So, instead of the woods littered with dead moose that suffered and died needlessly, why not let hunters take a few extra moose for meat in the freezer rather than feeding coyotes? I’m still trying to make sense out what these people do.

All of this reminds me of the time I took my car to the garage to remedy the skip in the engine. I checked back with the mechanic a few days later and he began to tell me all the parts and pieces he had replaced and still the motor had a skip.

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Maine’s Proposed Transmission Line: Lying, Cheating, Stealing, Fraud and Hypocrisy

All governments and those criminal agencies who support and perpetuate fraud and deception in their common practices, sometimes get caught with horse manure on their hands. With dirty hands dripping with juicy dung, then the criminal politicians go to work to change existing laws that will, somehow, run in their favor – whether financially or garnering votes. Some things never change.

Central Maine Power (CMP) company wants to destroy a great deal of forest in Maine, some of which will be on Maine Public Land, to run a transmission line from a hydro project in Canada to supply electricity in Massachusetts, a state that irresponsibly neglects their own needs choosing instead to satisfy their wants via the destruction of others -typical of today.

I was reading this article in a Maine newspaper about a recent revelation that CMP seems to have already received permits to “lease” Maine Public Land, those permits, depending on whose lie is being perpetuated to get what they want, were issued as the perhaps the cart ahead of the horse scenario.

Who to believe?

The former director of the Bureau of Parks and Lands, says that nobody told him about the Public Lands being used for a transmission line before he issued permits. But read what he was quoted as saying: “When I was working on it, I believed that it was for renewable energy and possibly windmills to be built in that region.” We’ll come back to this in a moment.

The former director also claims that by the time any application for land lease reached his office, it should have met all approvals by the Department of Agriculture, Conservation, and Forestry. Did the director assume and didn’t bother to check? Aren’t there any checks and balances? Or does any of this matter anymore?

Any lease, according to this news report, is “…conditioned upon the project receiving a Certificate of Public Convenience and Necessity,” which CMP already has. Who issues this certificate and what was the criteria to get it?

Like with anything in this age of totalitarian head-bangers (spoiled brats) those opposing the transmission line, decided to craft a bill that would nullify the lease and require that any changes of use of the Public Lands be handled through the Legislature by a two-thirds majority vote. Is this how things are now done? Just make a new law voiding an older one without due process? Does CMP have a legal permit? Can a government simply nullify such a permit simply because they disagree with the proposed project? If so, what kind of trouble are Maine residents going to face with no assurance that any laws are any good anymore?

I don’t want the corridor either but I also place some kind of value on law and order which should give us slaves some sense of where they can go and how they can get there. This looks like a mess and that it got that way from a combination of greasy hands and typical criminal politics.

But, let’s return to the statement made by the former director of the Bureau of Parks and Lands, where he said, “When I was working on it, I believed that it was for renewable energy and possibly windmills to be built in that region.” From this statement, are we to believe that a lease was signed by the director of the Bureau of Parks and Lands (we don’t even know if this lease was issued legally or not) for Maine Public Lands to be used to erect windmills and that a lease wouldn’t have been issued for a transmission line? Shouldn’t the consideration for a lease on public land be considered for the amount of change of use and destruction any project would bring? Evidently, this lease decision was based on one’s belief about Climate Change and their personal perspectives on what is, or isn’t, “renewable energy.”

Below are a couple of pictures. One shows the destruction from the construction of windmills, the other an electrical transmission line. Is one of these less destructive than the other?

This is a clearcut which is but one small portion of the entire site where windmills were erected. What kind of forest destruction is there here? Is this how Mainers want their public lands used?
A typical Maine transmission line.

Are we then to assume that because a lease was granted to a company for one type of use over another, that one is more or less destructive than the other? It would seem to me that before any further nonsense with wind power and transmission line permits are granted, Maine residents need to ask a few more questions and get a few more honest answers.

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And Right on Cue, Out Come the “Balance of Nature” Scorpions

I knew that yesterday when I published a short piece about one Maine town planning on spending $27,000 to kill a handful of rabies-infected animals causing safety problems within the town, that the misguided and ill-informed masses would begin speaking out in protest of killing any animal. And here they come.

I apologize that I cannot give you a link because the story I read this morning was from a copy of the newsprint version.

Aside from the lies about nature being in balance and the need to protect rabies-infected animals, like foxes, skunks, and raccoons, nothing ever seems to change as people refuse to correct their ignorance and make decisions based on something other than emotional clap trap.

When you read foolish drivel like, “Everything is connected. When you take something out, you disrupt the whole balance,” one can only ask where do people get this terrible information from. And then I remember, it is the babble that is taught in our schools and perpetuated by the media.

I’ve been trying to educate the public for years about the intellectual rubbish of “Balance of Nature.” “Nature,” as most have grown to believe is some magical mystery tour, is a vicious and continuous cycle of positive and negative feedback loops. What that means to us simple folks is that it is always changing and most often is replete with wild fluctuations.

But, I digress in order to attempt to make some sort of sense out of who would, out of their self-acclaimed love affair with Nature, consider protecting the likely perpetuation of rabies, not only on the animals but the people who come in contact with them, in order to achieve a “balance” that does not exist? Do we exchange one disease for another based on preferred animal affections?

Rabies is a cyclical disease, as a reflection of the truth of the positive and negative feedback loops; some years there’s rabies, some years there’s not. It is basic information to understand that diseases are most often spread when there are too many of one group of animals – in this case the canines that carry the disease. This is a clear indication that there is no balance, otherwise there wouldn’t be any issues with numerous encounters between people and wild animals and the threat of disease. This is not a difficult concept to handle when observed away from an emotional attachment to animals, coupled with having been taught false information.

Believing that if left alone, the foxes, raccoons, and skunks, diseased or not, would solve the rodent problem that carries other ticks and diseases that transmit Lyme and other diseases, then believers of such rubbish surely should then believe that there is some magic formula that will take care of the foxes, raccoons, and skunks. So, why is there a problem of too many wild canines that are carrying rabies and threatening people, if nature was in balance?

And why do we pay good money to have fish and wildlife departments and federal departments to handle such threats from diseases that pose public safety issues? If “Nature” balanced itself, think of the money we could save.

If people understood the realities of “leaving nature alone,” they would know that, at times, it requires man to step in and responsibly take care of public health and safety issues…even if it means checking a population of animals to facilitate the resolve to an important problem.

It’s always easy to speak up for the protection of animals when these diseased animals aren’t in your backyard threatening you and your family. Have some sense. Ridding the community of a few rodent-eating varmints isn’t the end of their world. As is obvious, these animals will reproduce and come back, probably to threaten the neighborhoods again.

Take a Xanax and call me in the morning.

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$27,000 To Euthanize Possible Rabies-Infected Wildlife

A small city and area in the mid-coast region of Maine has announced plans to set out traps to catch animals that might be infected with rabies. Evidently, there have been several encounters between people and foxes and other critters that can carry rabies, and concerns are growing to the point town managers and the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) think something needs to be done.

Before I make my statement that is sure to piss off a great number of people, let me say that dealing with rabies in wild animals is a difficult task. There is no way of knowing whether any animal is rabid. The town feels they are at a point where they must kill off a percentage of the animals that can contract and spread rabies in order to reduce encounters with people. Even the USDA says this action has no guarantee to stop the spread of rabies.

So, here’s the insane part. It’s going to cost the town nearly $27,000 to put out 20 traps and check them for a period of 10 days. So what costs so much? That’s easy. Let me paste here exactly what one news report printed: “The traps will not be lethal or harm the animal, but every wild animal caught in the traps will be euthanized.”

This is insanity! Is there a reason, other than the trapping “will not be lethal or harm the animal,” that lethal traps can’t be used? The animals are going to be killed…period. Kill them, properly dispose of them, and be done with it. The bulk of the cost of “euthanizing” the captured animals is putting the animals down “humanely.”

I know, I know. But seriously. Think about it. $27,000 is going to be spent to kill how many animals?

I’m sorry. I just can’t help myself. I wasn’t raised that way.

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Is What We Are Being Told About Habitat Really True?

One has to wonder. I was reading this morning about issues with feeding whitetail deer in Maine. George Smith, outdoor writer, shares with his readers that: “A SAM [Sportsman’s Alliance of Maine] survey of our members in 2018 revealed that 26% had fed deer sometime during the previous 3 winters. That equates to about 2,000 feeding sites, just among SAM members!” This information, as I understand it, does not include data from food plots, i.e. those places around where people plant crops specifically to feed deer.

So, let’s say there are about 2,000 feeding sites across Maine each winter season. We don’t know the location of all these feeding stations and/or the ones that aren’t included in the SAM survey report. (Is it reasonable to think that there are more deer feeding sites from people who are NOT members of SAM?) Consider that there is a possibility that if there are feeding stations near each other, some feed lots are sharing the feeding of the same deer.

Regardless, can you guess what the average number of deer that are being fed per feed site? If I were to take a wild guess, I’ve seen some where at peak feeding time, it appears as many as 100 deer are chowing down. Back yard feed sites, might get around a dozen, maybe more and maybe less.

For argument sake, let’s say each of the 2,000 + deer feeding sites nourishes 30 deer (I think that might be conservative so bear with me). That would mean, excluding some deer that might move between two or more feeding sites, perhaps 60,000 deer are receiving supplemental nourishment they wouldn’t get if they were on their own.

If the 60,000+ deer receiving supplemental nourishment (and once again, this does not include summer food plots and those feed stations that SAM isn’t aware of) comprise at least one quarter, and perhaps one half, of the statewide deer population, and not having any scientific data on geographic locations, what is this activity doing to the survival and promotion of healthier deer throughout the state?

We are repeatedly told that during the harshest parts of the winter months, deer browse on stuff that is of little or no value as far as nutrition goes. The fiber ingested more or less fills an empty stomach. So, ask yourself whether or not the deer that are being fed are better nourished. If so, what does that mean for the long term for deer?

If you’ve ever watched deer interact at a feed station, you will notice that the bigger deer bully the smaller deer, such that the smaller, and less aggressive deer, get what’s left over. Biologists and others have stated that feed plots aren’t “fair” because of this natural dynamic. Shouldn’t we consider that whatever “scraps” the runts get is certainly more than they would get without food sites?

Have you ever been to a deer wintering area and observed the realities taking place there? One quite obvious dynamic is the neat trimming that takes place of the bows of trees in the lowest parts of the canopy. As winter progresses and the snow level rises, so too does the trim line at the lower parts of the trees. When the trees have all been trimmed that can more or less easily be reached, deer begin to stand up on the hind legs in order to reach the tree bows. This means the bigger (taller) deer get food and the runts don’t. According to the misguided thinking of some, this natural event wouldn’t be “fair” either.

What does happen then with a quarter, or more, of the total deer population in Maine getting “unnatural” food? Do these deer receive the necessary energy to help them survive those long harsh winters better? If so, to what extent is the increased survival affecting the mortality rate of the deer herd? Does this increased nutrition cause the fawn survival rate to go up? If so, how much? Is it skewing natural dynamics? Does this event send those biological triggers, often conveniently talked up by animal rights groups and predator advocates, that “cause” deer to produce more as part of their reproductive rates?

There are many things to be considered with this extent of deer feeding. Probably we are left with more questions than answer. However, when we consider what we are being told about habitat and deer mortality rates etc., we might be looking at two different consequences of deer feeding. One consequence might be that we are seeing more deer added each year to the total deer population, or perhaps at least in those areas where deer feeding is more concentrated. Are we? Have we received any word from the biologists in charge of deer management that the population is actually growing? Maybe word from observations from those who feed deer can tell us if they are feeding more deer each year. I would think they ought to know. Don’t they count them? Does the harvest data indicate that the population of deer might be going up?

If none of this is actually happening, then it would be sensible to ask just what the condition of the deer herd would be without any supplemental feeding.

If you think about all these things, then one has to wonder if law makers and game managers are making too big a deal out of feeding deer. Is it really hurting in any way? Yes, there are concerns over spreading of disease, but is there an equitable concern for disease and virus spread throughout the landscape of all wildlife? If Chronic Wasting Disease was found in Maine, I’m positive the state would immediately implement all necessary actions to curb the spread. Supplemental feeding isn’t going to cause CWD, but it might contribute to spreading the disease.

We should probably ask ourselves how significant changes in feed and habitat, quality and quantity, are to the management of our wildlife. Is it like we are being told?

I think supplemental feeding of at least one quarter of the total deer herd is significant. I also believe this activity has contributed to the survival and reproduction of more deer. With that said, what would the state of the deer herd be today without the years of supplemental feeding?

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Trickle-Down Nonsense of Moose Tick Infestations

This morning I was rereading a Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife (MDIFW) blog post about the department’s ongoing moose survival study. There is little hope that ever in my lifetime we will rid ourselves of the ignorant brainwashing that has caused a new religion of Climate Change Worship. I am left with the firm understanding that, beyond politics, the science of climate change, has been replaced with the Scientism of utter nonsense. There is no hope. Regardless of whatever reality is, whether natural or man-made, the inability to understand simple concepts has been bred out of this post-normal society. Such is the case within our wildlife management departments worldwide. All that is known is we’re all gonna die from Climate Change.

There’s nothing I can say or do that is going to have any influence on the epidemic that has overtaken this dystopian totalitarian existence.

But maybe there is hope to some degree…or not. The blog post of which I linked to above reads: “This increase in winter tick is a consequence of the changing climate, resulting in milder winters and creating a greater opportunity for tick survival.”

One of the problems with making this statement is that there are not enough studies done on winter ticks to be able to fully understand the survival rates and conditions. While fish and wildlife biologists, along with millions of climate change religious fanatics, are nothing more than echo chambers of what he said-she said, hand selected information, most of which is based on scientism (outcome based) and void of real science (truth), is used to prop up narratives and is rooted in unprovable propaganda.

Currently, there are just as many, perhaps even more, pieces of scholarship that tell us that “climate” really is not a strong enough factor to consider in tick survival. (But, as I say, Don’t go look!)

The echo chambers constantly repeat the tale that harsh winters (this from the standpoint of we don’t have harsh winters anymore, which is bunkum) will kill off ticks that cause mortality in moose. Harsh winters have come and gone and returned again, the same way they always have. Those who choose to believe false data about temperature changes, wrongly believe that normal cold winters (if we still had them, wink-wink) would take care of the tick problem. They fail to understand tick mortality and the relationship to temperatures and climate, even suggesting they don’t really understand the life cycle of the moose tick.

Consider the following…if at all possible. If Climate Change is a real factor (There is natural climate change. There is NOT man-caused climate change…at least not in the way it is being sold to the public.) and if Maine is indicative of the rest of the world, it has seen a minuscule increase in average year round temperature (perhaps a half a degree) in the past few decades, then which scenario do you think would have the most influence on tick proliferation and mortality – a temperature change of half a degree over several decades, or an increase in moose populations, directly proportional to the increase in ticks, of say 50% or more over the same period of time?

Because the political persuasion of Climate Change Religion has so poisoned the minds of good men, perhaps then the only hope will be some changes made to moose management that is secondary, or worse, to counter the invasion of Scientism.

If we read further on at the MDIFW blog, we can read the following: “With parasites and disease, higher moose population leads to greater chance of transfer, ultimately causing more death. Since calves have two critical periods in their lives to ensure survival, it is of high priority for MDIFW to find ways to help improve moose health. For this reason, the agency is considering methods of selectively lowering the moose population in certain parts of the state to decrease the chance for parasite and disease transfer, eventually leading to a healthier and higher quality population.”

What is extremely interesting in this approach is that this is something I have been harping at for years now, i.e. that we should recognize those factors that influence wildlife that we have no ability to control and focus on those things that we can. DUH!

As much as anyone wants to harp on Climate Change, there’s nothing we can do about it, short of an all out war on the worlds’ human population. Some believe a tax on carbon will do the job. I might suggest that first we take a look at the historic raping of the public of taxes for such things as the War on Drugs, the War on Poverty, the War on Education, etc. and do an honest assessment as to the status of those billion dollar (in taxes) programs and the yield on investment. Yeah, I thought so.

So, we can’t change the climate…no, really, we CANNOT change the climate. We don’t even understand it or what influences it. How are we ever going to change it? Or do we want to?

A warming climate has historically always been followed by periods of prosperity, growth, ample food supplies, etc. Carbon dioxide is an important and necessary component to our own health and prosperity.

If the climate in Maine is changing so much, as we are led to believe, that moose ticks are growing by the trillions as a result, then it only makes sense, as we are also told, that the southern fringe of natural moose habitat would be migrating north, and along with it the northern fringe of the whitetail deer population would be expanding north along with the retreating moose.

We know that the opposite is true. Maine’s deer population is struggling to survive north of say the East and West highway of U.S. Route 2. We also know that moose are expanding into southern regions of Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont and Massachusetts. This is all opposing the theories of Climate Change and the false claim that moose ticks are increasing due to Climate Change.

It is of some relief to see that at least in Maine, moose biologists are willing to attempt something beyond crying over Climate Change to improve the health of the moose herd. With open minds and a return to real wildlife science, biologists will soon learn, as others have before them, that the ONLY way to mitigate moose ticks is to reduce the population.

Let’s get on with it and put an end to this needless suffering.

Photo by Albert Ladd

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Deer Yards and Recreational Trails

Note: The below article has been submitted to the Bethel Citizen, a local newsprint publication and subsidiary of the Lewiston Sun Journal (Sun Media Group). It is intended as an open letter to the State of Maine, the Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife, the Legislature, and any and all groups that develop land and in particular recreational trails.

Maine’s Trails Need Consideration for Wildlife

Open Air with Tom Remington

The Bethel, Maine area has become one of the fastest growing areas when it comes to the use and development of recreational trails. With little or no guidelines to develop, expand, or limit use, perhaps now is a better time than later to closely examine the effects of increased use by people and pets on trails throughout the year.

Trails for recreation are a great thing. As cultural demands change, I have watched as old logging roads, railroad beds, footpaths, hiking trails, snowmobile and ATV trails, etc., have been upgraded and are maintained for increased traffic far beyond foot traffic alone. The Western Maine area, which includes Bethel, at present has the most recreational trails available than at any other time in history.

With the development of paths, capable of moving more and different forms of recreation to greater distances, in less time, with manual and motorized transportation devices, with this come direct threats to our wildlife. We don’t always think about how our presence and activities can negatively effect habitat.

If we take a look at the whitetail deer population and how their biological cycles go allowing them to survive long winters in Maine, then perhaps we can see a definite need for considerations in locating trails, size of trails, and intended uses.

During the winter months, the whitetail deer in Maine, move into what our biologists at the Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife (DIFW) call Deer Wintering Areas (DWA). Most don’t realize that the Bethel region is home to a few of these DWAs, with one that used to be one of the state’s largest located near the Bethel Airport and within land which is now part of the Bingham Forest Park.

When deer enter Deer Wintering Areas (typically at the end of November into mid-December depending on weather conditions), their metabolism begins to slow. This is a necessary and natural adaptation that allows deer to conserve energy needed to stay warm and survive. This approximate 100-day period, where deer eat very little and what they do consume is more to fill a void than provide nutrition, is an extremely critical time.

It is during these mid-winter days, that deer are at their most vulnerable stage of existence. Any disturbances within these DWAs can result in near immediate death.

I have written in the past about concerns that I have with DIFW offering late season deer hunting opportunities for concern that deer that have already begun to “yard up” will be unnecessarily stressed by the presence of hunters. I also have concerns about when and where people can “shed hunt” (search of antlers) because efforts can stress deer and other wildlife during critical times.

Biologists at DIFW repeatedly echo that the biggest obstacle in efforts to maintain and manage healthy levels of whitetail deer is destruction/loss of habitat.

With all of this in mind, it would seem but only reasonable and responsible that all efforts to seek advice and guidelines be sought from professionals BEFORE construction or expansion of recreational trails. This is far better than waiting for the strong arm of the “law” to come down on all of us.

It’s not just a trail. Consideration must be taken as to the location of a trail and just as important, what types of use are intended. For example, a small walking path through the middle of a DWA, while I would strongly urge that no trail be built going through any DWA, would seem less stressful on deer than motorized recreational devices that would frighten and cause deer to run away, using up valuable energy to stay alive. Any and all activity penetrating a DWA is undue deadly stress and can be easily prevented.

As trails are developed, upgraded, and advertised for use, with it comes increased use. This use always includes those who want to go outside on trails with their pets. A combination of people, noise, and ambitious dogs looking to bark at and chase (they are dogs after all) yarded up deer, can be catastrophic.

I would implore all who are looking to create and/or expand new or existing trails anywhere, first seek help from the Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife. The DIFW has biologists who can help locate DWAs and advise on the best possible ways of getting where you would like your trials to go with the least chance of wildlife and ecosystem disturbances.

This is in no way intended to speak negatively against recreational trails, only to request that all trails be done in the best possible way for ALL.

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Hypocritical Ignorance and Public Lands

Lands supposedly bought and paid for with the money extorted from the public taxpayer, offering tribute in order to avoid imprisonment from the king and his men, we have been led to believe that when such actions happen, the lands should be widely left open and accessible to all those wishing to enjoy it. That is, after all, how socialism works?

Recently, the executive director of the Sportsman’s Alliance of Maine (SAM), wrote a column in a Maine newspaper explaining, in his opinion, that should the Maine Legislature, being strong-armed by environmentalists and animal rights groups to limit use and access to public lands by hunting, fishing, and trapping, could result in a reduction in support for the Land for Maine’s Future program designed to protect lands for everyone to enjoy.

While an honest and not necessarily bright person can understand that any leader of a special interest group would go to bat to protect the interests of those they might represent, in this case members of SAM, nowhere in the executive director’s article did I read that SAM intended to fight against environmentalists and animal rights groups who want to limit hunters, trappers, and fishermen, in order to limit use and access to any and all others.

As Maine has come to expect, such actions are typically followed by ignorant and hypocritical screeds by members of the environmental and animal rights groups.

In one such invective, we read how it is the hunters, trappers, and fishermen who are putting the Land for Maine’s Future in jeopardy because SAM wants to protect access and use to the same degree as all other extorted taxpayers. This isn’t the case in this rebuttal.

The author, who most of Maine realizes hates hunters, trappers, and fishermen and devotes much of his time to destroy any and all of that strong and important heritage, all in the name of promoting his agendas at the cost of limiting any and all others. This it totalitarian in nature and exemplifies the foundation of Environmentalism and Animal Rights.

The author writes: “Why should the people of Maine be forced to subsidize and accept life-endangering private activities that many do not approve of in order to preserve the land for the public?”

Perhaps this should be answered with another question. Why should the people of Maine be forced to subsidize and accept the agenda’s of those who want to limit use and access to public lands for the sole purpose of protecting and promoting their special interest agendas?

Taxpayers need to decide which approach is better: to leave public land open for all, or allow the richest, big-mouthed special interest groups to demand and get exclusive and/or limited access?

In general, most who participate in hunting, fishing, and trapping, particularly on public lands, do not have hidden or open agendas geared at stopping or limiting the activities of others and/or their special interest groups. Quite the contrary. Simply seeking to protect sportsman’s access to public land, fails the straight-face test of honesty when attempting to make SAM out to be exclusive users of public lands.

The author also asks: “Why should those who want to sell their land to the state for wildlife protection purposes be prohibited from doing so?” They shouldn’t and aren’t. If any landowners are considering gifting or selling land to The Land for Maine’s Future program, they should have understanding as to how the program works, as has been designed and amended by the voters of the state. If the land owner finds these designs unacceptable, there are other options available to any land owner that would like to lock up their land and exclude any and all special interest groups…including environmental and animal rights groups or hunting, trapping, and fishing.

In their own ignorance, many want to extol the benefits of living in what they believe is a democratic society, until such time as such democracy flies up their face. The system, as crooked as it is, is available for anyone to exploit and convince the voters to support their special interest. When that system won’t work for the totalitarian, their only other recourse is to turn to the media seeking publication of their hypocritical ignorance.

Proverbs 17:28 KJV – “Even a fool, when he holdeth his peace, is counted wise: and he that shutteth his lips is esteemed a man of understanding.”

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