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Thread: Grizzly management

  1. #1
    Member AlpineEarl's Avatar
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    Default Grizzly management

    Another article about Parnell's ridiculous policies towards game management, Rossi's complete and total lack of experience and education and the absolutely absurd actions from the BOG. Fools, complete and utter fools. Some will still read it and think that Sinnot is a lefty, fruity tree hugger. Others will read it and think science schmience, who needs it? Some will read none of it and still profess their OPINION that they have all the answers gained from a few days in the field and biologists who do the work day in and day out for years are wrong.

    http://www.alaskadispatch.com/articl...bears?page=0,0

    In these times of shrinking budgets where are all the penny pinchers complaining about the complete waste of money the predator control program is? Cashing their check from the BOG probably.

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    Member bushrat's Avatar
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    Well, I'd stop short of calling folks fools. Other than that, I think Sinnott's article was timely, and the JWM article referenced is sure worth the read if folks can get to it.

    I still can't believe the proposal for next spring's BOG meeting from our own F&G Department. Legalized public trapping of bears (including grizzlies), allowing nonresidents to participate under supervision of licensed guides, doing away with the provisions of the initial Unit 16 black bear snaring control program and allowing two-day checks, trappers don't have to stay in the field...all to ostensibly put more moose and caribou on the tables of Alaskans. It's more than depressing coming from the same agency that in 2008 said they did not and would not support the trapping/snaring of grizzly bears, even as part of a grizzly bear control program.

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    Supporting Member iofthetaiga's Avatar
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    Thanks for a great post Earl. Unfortunately the rep meter won't let me. With the utmost respect to Mark, I think "fools" is the completely appropriate descriptor. The state of wildlife management in Alaska is nothing short of embarrassing.
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    Member Matt's Avatar
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    I'd rather see baiting allowed for brown bears instead of trapping. That route would get quicker and easier results.

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    I agree Matt. They're coming to our baits anyway.
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    I read both the article from the dispatch, and the paper Mr. Sinnott referred to. In the paper referenced by Sinnott, there was a strong anti hunting bias expressed. The authors implied that there are no studies that show a correlation between brown bear numbers and moose calf survival; that's not true. Studies have been conducted which show this correlation. They also do not show where the increased harvest of brown bears statewide since 1980 has resulted in lower brown bear numbers statewide; why leave that out of the paper, unless that has not been the result?

    I will always take anything that the National Audobon Society, WWF, et al sponsor with a large grain of salt. Same goes for Mr. Sinnott. I was here when a flock of geese was the direct cause for the death of 24 airmen in the AWACS crash at Elmendorf. I assisted in the recovery effort. Management of geese on base and in the Anchorage bowl was the indirect cause of this crash; look who was at the helm of the ADF&G in Anchorage at the time. The goose population at that time was about 3 times the historic average for the Anchorage bowl, this overabundance resulted in the loss of 24 human lives, yet it took months of cutting red tape and resistance from local ADF&G to be able to take any lethal action against the geese. It was even difficult to be allowed to addle eggs or disrupt nests at all to lower reproduction...

    I see predator control as a pro-active management tool. I think all too many in management prefer to be reactive, or nonactive. "Maybe if we sit and wait long enough things will get better..." ("and fewer people will take potshots at us before we're able to retire")

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    Yeah, reading that supposed "research" article made my ears burn. And I think Sinnotts very short sighted. Obviously brown bears eat herbivors and we have all watched them chase and eat moose calves. They were wiping out the north slope muskoxen and aleutian caribou and exterminating the populations and you can watch it on you tube. But there is no evidence that controlling brown bears helps game populations? I will call Sinnott and the authors ignorant antihunters if no one else will..... Try coming to the Kenai if you want to see what lack of predator control and habitat will do to hunting opportunies. We have to drive to the predator control areas in the interior to hunt and fill our freezers.
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    I don't miss the Tony Knowles days ... at all ... and I sure don't miss Rick's attitude. I don't think your foil hat is helping one whit... I am one of those retired biologists that DON'T agree with him or the position statement/oppinion piece in the WS Bulletin.

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    Default another vehement first post...

    Quote Originally Posted by Disgusted View Post
    Comment from a member who decided he needed a new separate forum ID to post from, for when he gets disgusted.
    Fixed it for ya.

    Sorry to out ya, but that was kinda obvious.

  10. #10
    Member WingShooter's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Matt View Post
    I'd rather see baiting allowed for brown bears instead of trapping. That route would get quicker and easier results.
    Agree. The last 5 baiting seasons I've seen a marked increase of brown bear on my sites. This year I officially deemed them "infested".

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    Well at least we don't have to worry about overharvest of brown bears on the Kenai Peninsula... Ha. Sheesh seems like the best moose areas in AK right now have a one brown bear a year limit. The KP now has one of the unhealthiest moose herds in AK and has probably the most restricted brown bear hunting in the state and were only allowed 2 black bear a year until just this July. Doesn't seem hard to figure out to me.

    I don't really like the idea of bear snaring. If hunters are too lazy to get out there and harvest brown bear in their moose hunting areas then don't complain when you aren't seeing any calves or seeing less moose.

  12. #12
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    The various extreme predator measures that have arisen in the name of producing more ungulates is disturbing. Viewing the issue from a detached and the purely scientific objective of making dead bears then there would be no reason to object to whatever method or means available. But have we really come to that; do we really need to be snaring (or take your pick of method) bears?
    It seems that many of the areas where bears are in direct competition with hunters for ungulates that the season and bag limit has been fairly liberal. In spite of that there are evidently still too many bears. So my thought has always been, if there is competition and you have the option of dealing with that competition, then do so or take your lumps. I suspect that much of it has to do with what has already been brought up; resident hunters are not that excited about killing an animal that they are not going to eat and that is going to cost them a fortune in taxidermy fees to process. Allowing non-residents to hunt them without benefit of a guide does not seem like such a bad idea, unless of course you are a guide.
    But I don’t have direct experience with the bear/predator issues up north; rather, I have lived on and hunted the Kenai for 40 years. I have seen more brown bears in each of the past five years than I saw in the previous 35 years combined. Back in 70s and 80s there was a spring and fall season, one bear every four years. There were some bears taken but the Kenai was not considered a go-to spot for brown bears. There were about as many incidental (DLP) kills as there were deliberate, best as I can remember. But, there were plenty of bears and there was also a lot of black bears, wolves, moose and ….good moose habitat. Over the next couple of years the southern peninsula moose population where we had a couple of significant burns and especially with the moose antler restrictions in place, will probably rebound nicely.
    There are three things that have focused attention to brown bears on the Kenai. The incidents of them coming to black bear bait stations, the common presence of them inside peninsula communities and the presence of them along the Kenai/Russian River. I have not seen where there is an identified correlation between the bear baiting and the presence of brown bears amongst people. From 1971 until around 2004 there were perhaps a few bear sightings in communities and an occasional problem bear that was quickly dispatched.
    Now we have a lot of folks baiting and shooting black bears and feeding brown bears. With each feeding those bears encounter human scent, get a free meal and have no negative consequences. It stands to reason that they would migrate towards communities, with all of their delicious smells, once they figure out that no harm will come to them.
    I know I don’t have the great answer but I do know this. I cannot in my own mind grasp the need to disrespect one magnificent animal in favor of producing more of another. There is never going to be enough moose and caribou to go around. The population of the state has grown too much, the ability for people to access remote areas is much better then ever and even people who should know better still believe that Alaska is some big-game utopia. I’ve thought about what would happen if there were some sort of disaster and Alaska was shut off from the world and people went about feeding themselves with game, **** any regulations. Our accessible big game populations would last about a week.

  13. #13
    Thewolfwatching
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    “The bears that were hiding.” I didn’t know bears hide during moose season! The general report was in in 16B bears were rather scarce unlike previous years throughout the summer.. See, the reality is without a healthy game/fish/berry season we won’t have a healthy bear population either.. Make of it what you will but I got interior reports of hail storms eliminating the berries i.e. no bears.. Ha! The only place I’ve heard about a really healthy bear population was Anchorage or say 14C.. mmm.. wonder why that is? Giving non-residents rights to hunt grizzly independently is hysterical! Good luck to them!! Can’t wait to see how much $ that costs the state..
    BTW, I’ve never heard of a trapper literally considering a grizz as a “Fur Bearer” since you can’t make a profit from trapping them.. umm study what you preach.. I have the utmost respect for trappers that I know and.. well.. have some **** respect would ya.. They’d be the last people to agree with bear snaring..


    Quote Originally Posted by Disgusted View Post
    I don't like the idea of bear snaring, either, but I've never been a trapper, and I don't see the wisdom in ending the practice for any furbearer, which is precisely what a brown bear is. Who harvests them for meat?

    Hunters are too lazy to harvest them, so it's all their fault if bears infest an area? A friend saw a medium sized sow this month while moose hunting. Out of curiosity, he blew on a mouth blown predator call. It worked. The sow came at a run. He shot her. She measured out at about 7' squared. It's not what he really wants to put on his wall, so he skins her out and brings her to a taxidermist just to have her tanned. The cost? About $550. That's a pretty steep "tax" to accomplish predator control in one's hunt area, and any other "authority" to manage game in the area is zealously guarded by the state/feds (and environmentalists). Should he just trash the hide when he gets home? Is that legal? If he was able to sell that hide (even if it was just for the cost of tanning) he might be a bit more motivated to shoot more bears. Or if a non-resident hunt for brown bears without the guide requirement in intensively managed areas only was opened, and the season was only after moose/caribou season (so the non-residents wouldn't be competing with residents for meat), I believe more bears would be taken.

    And it appears that bear numbers would not be in trouble. No where in Sinnott's article or the Miller (et al) article is there any evidence cited or provided that bear numbers in, say, Unit 13 are in jeopardy, even after years of liberalized regs. Indeed, in the recent bear management report that I linked to above, there is every indication that brown bear numbers in Unit 13 are as healthy as ever. Indeed, biologist Bob Tobey even cited the evidence that Miller's previous bear population estimate and maximum sustained harvest numbers were incorrect. He openly states that a study of immigration is due, and anybody more interested in science over politics ought to agree, since such a study has never been conducted.

    The Sinnott article links to a "peer reviewed article" in the Journal of Wildlife Management. Former ADFG biologists Sterling Miller lists his association as with the National Wildlife Federation. You can visit their website here:

    http://www.nwf.org/

    It is the classic environmental organization, complete with not one, but three "Donate Here" buttons on their home page for your use. Note above where I mentioned "triple management" if you wish to include environmental organizations? Here's the proof. And if you knew Miller while he was at the department, you wouldn't be surprised.

    Have any of you been out to Unit 13 since the close of moose season? The bears that were hiding when thousands of hunters were riding around looking for moose have come out. Their sign is all over. It's the last chance to feed on the gutpiles before their nap. It's a real good time to be bear hunting. Any of you residents interested? From what I saw this past weekend, the answer is a resounding "no". So why not let non-residents do it without the burden of $20K payments to the Alaska Professional Hunters Association? In his article, even Sinnott openly stated that the coastal units are not included in the predator management scheme since they are the primary destination for guided non-residents.

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    Just had to add something, the predator control areas are relatively tiny areas of the state where either ungulate populations are threatened or they are important for food harvest. Compared to the entirety of the state population of 30000 brown bears where most bears are not hunted or lightly harvested its a drop in the bucket but I think this point is lost on these antihunters.
    “I come home with an honestly earned feeling that something good has taken place. It makes no difference whether I got anything, it has to do with how the day was spent. “ Fred Bear

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    Quote Originally Posted by Disgusted View Post
    ...
    Are you always disgusted?

  16. #16
    Thewolfwatching
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    ROFL!! man you just crack me up... very cute and totaly disgusted.. but.. it's sorta funny.. Hey, next time your at Fur Rendezvous perhaps you should make a bid..
    I dont nor have ever talked to any non-res hunters that would want to take grizz indep.. sorry but most of them are keen enough not to.. Yet, what do I know.. Yeah, I heard, I hear lots hee hee.. Truly, it's all hearsay ;-)
    Quote Originally Posted by Disgusted View Post
    “Study what you preach”? Perhaps you should follow your own advice. No where do you support any of your false claims or assumptions with anything approaching evidence. Sorry, but “I’ve heard” doesn’t count.

    Bears don’t necessarily hide during the legal moose season, but they tend to hide or leave an area saturated with moose hunters, gunfire, motorized vehicles roaring about all day, and large campfires roaring at night. You did know that the highest numbers of hunters in the field in Alaska is during moose season, right?

    Is the “general report” you cite the Miller, et al “article”? I read nothing in that article about bears being “rather scarce” in GMU 16B, and I know of no determination by ADFG to that end. In fact, in the brown bear management report I linked to previously in this thread, Area Biologist Herman Griese estimated Unit 16 brown bear numbers at 586-1156 in 1993, Gino Del Frate reported similar numbers in 2003, and the 2007 Quang and Becker aerial transect survey supported those estimates. Moreover, “staff observations during the past 20 years, and comments from unit residents and others who regularly visit the unit, indicate a growing brown bear population during the last several years.” Every indication, every estimate, and every study supports a large and growing brown bear population and density in GMU 16 (both subunits).

    You ask how much it would cost the state to allow non-residents to hunt brown bears in select units during select times without a guide? Nothing. Indeed, it would increase revenue, boost the state economy, and also give our fellow Americans an opportunity to hunt brown bear that they don’t have in the states. Increased license and tag fees bring revenue. Increased motorhome, snowmobile, atv, and vehicle rental as well as gear sales and lodging bring economic benefit to Alaskan businesses. This is all during spring and late fall when most tourists are not here yet or gone.

    The reason why you’ve never heard of a trapper considering a brown bear as a fur bearer is because the state has refused to acknowledge or classify them thusly (primarily because of the opposition from the environmental community and guides), but the vast majority of brown bear harvest is precisely for the acquisition of their fur/hide, not their meat. There is no profit in selling brown bear hides because it is illegal, however, when the state auctions brown bear hides at the Fur Rendezvous annually, they sell for four to eight thousand dollars each. And if you knew anything about trapping, you’d know that one can harvest under a trapping license without owning a trap. A number of “trappers” harvest through shooting alone. The furbearer classification allows the sale of the hide. It does not require the use of snares or traps.

    Study what you preach. Good advice. Try it.

  17. #17
    Thewolfwatching
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    "He said there, right there, and he heard 'BEAR' as he ran to camp with the wind at his heels! HAHAHA!! (sorry inside joke)

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    Member BRWNBR's Avatar
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    "You ask how much it would cost the state to allow non-residents to hunt brown bears in select units during select times without a guide? Nothing. Indeed, it would increase revenue, boost the state economy, and also give our fellow Americans an opportunity to hunt brown bear that they don’t have in the states. Increased license and tag fees bring revenue. Increased motorhome, snowmobile, atv, and vehicle rental as well as gear sales and lodging bring economic benefit to Alaskan businesses. This is all during spring and late fall when most tourists are not here yet or gone."

    I'm not real anxious to see how full we can really pack the denali why in sept...or how many sows and cubs get hammered cause guys just drop the hammer without checkin' the situation fully. talk about increase state revenue...up the fines!!

    I wish before they jumped to all this trapping and hubub, i wish they just legalize the sale of brown bear hides on the mainland. like a poster said 550 bucks to tan a hide...i know almost no moose hunters that wanna do that. bears are just time consuming when your out moose hunting unless your lookin' for one. lemme sell them!!!
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    oct-nov...two words...access.
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    Member Matt's Avatar
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    You need to go deep in valley drainages to find bears that would be out in November?

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