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Thread: Thermal optics, legal/ethical

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    Default Thermal optics, legal/ethical

    I recently purchased a hand held FLIR which is a thermal detection device. It can be used during daylight hours for locating game up to 1200 yards away. Obviously a great asset hunting bears in brush hill sides. I cannot seem to locate any regulations that prohibit it's use. It's not rifle mounted and although it could be used at night it would be of little benefit unless you had a spotlight to illuminate the target. Is it ethical? I'm curious to read posts. Tks

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    Member ak_cowboy's Avatar
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    it's legal for now. Keep an eye on the BOG meetings coming up.

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    Have you used one? The outfitter I use doesn't want one in camp and I will honor his request. He is a good man and a friend but I think his reluctance is based as much on confusion with the regs as to any personal resistance to this technology.

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    The ethical side probably depends on what you intend to do with it. If it's game recovery then I could kinda buy it, if it's for before the shot then definitely not. Since the road to hell is paved with good intentions, I would imagine they will be regulated soon.

    This discussion could easily blow the archery range finder ethics thread we had a few years ago out of the water.

    1200 yards.......seriously? That's Star Trek stuff.

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    At 1200 yards looking at a brushy hillside you may see little, a further examination with a spotting scope or a 1200 yard stalk would be necessary to positively identify the target. The advantage is knowing where to look. A brown game animal hidden by brush would be difficult if not impossible to detect.

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    Quote Originally Posted by gstocker View Post
    The advantage is knowing where to look. A brown game animal hidden by brush would be difficult if not impossible to detect.
    And that would be why they call it hunting.......

    And so it begins.

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    I have one, as well as a gen 3 night vision scope, although its Firedept type use, you can, indeed , across wide open areas get a heat signature from 1,000 yards.
    The NV Optics wont see that far, even on the clearest night
    If you can't Kill it with a 30-06, you should Hide.

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    Member Birdstrike's Avatar
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    I think regardless of what the regs say, you'll need to decide whether you want to be a hunter or a shooter.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Birdstrike View Post
    I think regardless of what the regs say, you'll need to decide whether you want to be a hunter or a shooter.
    Well said. Seems that such a tool would lessen much of what I love about the hunting experience.

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    And the slippery slope gets a fresh sheet of ice......
    “Life has become immeasurably better since I have been forced to stop taking it seriously.” ― H.S.T.
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    Supporting Member iofthetaiga's Avatar
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    It's only a matter of time... Can't wait to read the debate after some wingnut shoots a hunter because he detected a heat signature in the brush. First jerkwagon who suggests the victim should have been wearing blaze orange should get dope slapped.
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    Unfortunately, the more "modern advantages" that are allowed to boost the efficiency of hunters, the shorter and more restrictive our open/general seasons will become. For instance, if a game animal is being harvested at 100% of allowable mortality a technology that results in another 50% harvest puts the total harvest well over the threshold. The answer is either limit technology, or shorten and restrict opportunity.
    Lynx on the kenai are a perfect example. When predator hunters mouth called, the take during low cycles was pretty insignificant. Not that many hunters were good at it. With electronic calls everybody is able to call well. Even if the limit were one, it wouldn't matter, because the guy with the call can either loan it out or offer to take a friend once he's got his cat.
    This is no joke, I had a bio flat out tell me that if electronic predator calls were banned they might have been able to leave lynx open.
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    Quote Originally Posted by gstocker View Post
    Have you used one? The outfitter I use doesn't want one in camp and I will honor his request. He is a good man and a friend but I think his reluctance is based as much on confusion with the regs as to any personal resistance to this technology.
    Sounds like your outfitter is a fair chase kinda guy!.....althought I have used technology for hunting, better clothes, boots, packs etc. We have to draw a line at some point!......the sheep, moose, bear, etc. have been using the only technology they will ever have, and have been using it for tens of thousands of years, their eyes, nose, legs and ears!....
    "Mountains are not fair or unfair, they are just dangerous" ~ Reinhold Messner

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    Member ak_cowboy's Avatar
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    I think one would be great for blood tracking or finding a wounded bear in the pucker bush

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    Quote Originally Posted by iofthetaiga View Post
    It's only a matter of time... Can't wait to read the debate after some wingnut shoots a hunter because he detected a heat signature in the brush. First jerkwagon who suggests the victim should have been wearing blaze orange should get dope slapped.
    Dang straight!
    Great spirits have always found violent opposition from mediocre minds. The latter cannot understand it when a man does not thoughtlessly submit to hereditary prejudices but honestly and courageously uses his intelligence. Albert Einstein

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    Supporting Member Amigo Will's Avatar
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    I would think it would fit nicely into todays morals and ethics for hunting.
    Now left only to be a turd in the forrest and the circle will be complete.Use me as I have used you

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    Its not thermal tech that we are discussing. It's what you, him, and I perceive as fair chase. My fair chase if different than yours. whether it's a drone, radios, a thermal scope, or a guide. All aid what you, the individual want to do as in the way you want to hunt. I would never go for a guide because he knows where the animals are, patterns, and tactics. All i have to do is have deep pockets and be able to keep up with him and shoot straight. Using a thermal optic on my own two feet sounds more like fair chase than a guide to me. Again "MY" opinion is you have to think what is fair chase to you which is not to be confused with what you can justifiably afford such as a transport or guide. I if i had access to one i'd use it. Hunters have been using what they have access to for 1000's of years. And it has over time evolved with technology essentially making us more successful exponentially, while at the same time our absolute need for wild game for survival falls to the lowest level with a grocery store on every corner for most people(yes even in alaska most people live in a city with multiple stores). I see a lot of self justification on this site that turns in to bending reality into words that are more appealing. And that i know, is not "SOME" individuals intentions.

    Do i have to come up with some clever way to tell everyone to say i am giving my opinion and not telling all of you that your uneducated, unethical, dimwits who dont know how to hunt? I hope not!!!!
    Trying to play enough to make working for the money all worth it.

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    Don't like thermal scopes, scopes with built in rangefinders with trajectory programs built in, telescopic sights with night vision or any electronic device on a firearm for hunting. Maybe that is why I use a bow.

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    Well, I'm getting one of those night vision scopes for shooting rats at night with a pellet gun. I don't think I'll call it fair chase or even hunting but when it comes to rats, I'm going to call it ethical.

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    That's one reason I wear hunters orange and will always do so during the seasons. I have no issue if the scope is not mounted on a firearm. I would love to know where the bear is so I don't upset it.
    "Equipped with his five senses, man explores the universe around him and calls the adventure science"

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