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Thread: Trophy Managed Game Management Area”

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    Default Trophy Managed Game Management Area”

    Trophy Managed Game Management Area” in the Chugach Mountains


    I saw this phrase on a web site. Has anyone heard of this area. Is this an "official" designation? It's not ringing a bell with with me.

    thanks,

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    Forum Admin Brian M's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jeffin AK View Post
    Trophy Managed Game Management Area” in the Chugach Mountains


    I saw this phrase on a web site. Has anyone heard of this area. Is this an "official" designation? It's not ringing a bell with with me.

    thanks,
    Was the web site advertising guided sheep hunts in 14C? If so, that would explain it. It's not an official designation (that I'm aware of), but since 14C is restricted to drawing permits for sheep, it is generally considered a trophy sheep area. Sounds like a sales pitch, but one that is loosely based in reality.

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    Default Moose

    Brian,

    Oops -should have mentioned that. It was for moose hunting. That's what i thought was strange.


    And yes it was a guide's site that I looked at.

    thanks

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    Quote Originally Posted by jeffin AK View Post

    Oops -should have mentioned that. It was for moose hunting.
    Hmmm...that is strange. The only thing I can think of is that he is referring to the 50"/3-4 brow tine restriction. By those standards, though, most of the state would be considered a "trophy managed area".

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    Default Sales Pitch

    Must be a sales pitch,

    thanks,

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    I believe F&G refers to the draw areas around Skilak as "Trophy" areas because you can't take spikes & forks in that area.
    Vance in AK.

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    Forum Admin Brian M's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vance in AK View Post
    I believe F&G refers to the draw areas around Skilak as "Trophy" areas because you can't take spikes & forks in that area.
    I thought about that, but that hunt is in the Kenai Mountains, not the Chugach Mountains. Of course...it does come close to the Chugach National Forest.

    Are we confused yet?

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    I understand that Brian (Unit 15b vs 14c I think), I was just digging for where they might have borrowed the idea of a "Trophy" designation for their area from.
    As I understand you 14c is also a no spike/fork area.
    Vance in AK.

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    Forum Admin Brian M's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vance in AK View Post
    As I understand you 14c is also a no spike/fork area.
    Most of 14C is closed outright to moose hunting. The "Remainder 14C" area, Bird, Indian, and Peters Creeks are spike/fork/50", whereas the Ship Creek and Eklutna Lake registration hunts are any bull. Likewise, the bull hunts on the military bases are any bull as well.

    Yep, almost certainly a sales pitch.

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    Default Sheep trophy areas

    Heimer here with more (sheep) history.

    Historically, ADF&G stated several consumptive use management goals for sheep. These date from 1976 when Ron Sommerville was Director of the Game Division and instituted what has become the Division's planned management system. These goals were "trophy hunting," "aesthetic hunting conditions," and "maximum opportunity to hunt." When the dust settled (after ANICA) in the mid 1980s we had about 40% of Alaska's total sheep populations under "aesthetic hunting" goals, about 30% under "maximum opportunity to hunt," 30% under "viewing only" (primarily in National Parks), and 3% under "trophy hunting."

    Alaska has one designated "trophy management" area for sheep. It is the Tok Management Area. Heimer and Smith's (1975) report on horn growth didn't show the TMA as the area with the greatest trophy potential in Alaska, but "trophy management" for sheep was an idea whose "time had come" when we established it in 1974 (I was early in my career as a sheep biologist with ADF&G then). The Interior Region (Region III) was the only place where the idea could get serious consideration at the time, so we (being in Fairbanks) went with the TMA. It was not an easy "sell" even then, but it seems to have worked well. Among the earlier objectives for the TMA was maintaining 7 to 10% of the harvest above 39 inches in length. This, of course, required the limited permit system which is still in effect after 33 years. That horn length objective was typically met as long as I kept up with the harvest stats from the TMA. I don't know how it is working these days.

    Areas in the Chugach and Wrangells had greater trophy potential, but the regional leadership in that region (ADF&G's Region II for wildlife) was definitely NOT INTERESTED in trophy hunting at that time. When Tony Smith and I went to Region II with the suggestion of a trophy management area between Klutina Lake and the Matanuska Glaceir, we were told to "Keep your "expeletive deleted" trophy management ideas north of the Alaska Range." I can't say I've seen an obvious change in philosophy there over the last 30 years.

    Many think of 14C as a "trophy hunting" area because it has produced so well over the years. However, the extensive permit system there was never designed to make 14C a trophy management area. The area had been open to hunting prior to it becoming a state park. When the state parks advocates got it designated as Chugach State Park, their first reaction was to eliminate sheep hunting to "minimize user conflicts." Our late friend, Dave Harkness was the genius behind the 14C permit system. Dave liked the idea of trophy hunting for sheep, but conceived and designed the 14C permit system as a way to maintain as much hunting as possible in the new state park. Hence, even though the area looks rather like a trophy area because it has such fine potential to produce large sheep, the permit system there has always been designed to maintain "maximum opportunity to hunt" in the face of efforts to eliminate hunting there.

    Of course, the really great sheep country in the Wrangells ended up in a National Park. We lost hunting there. That left the north side of the Chugach as the only remaining habitat in the top tier of Alaskan sheep populations for trophy production. This would have been the 13D portion that has been the subject of controversy lately.

    Some of this history may have been included in the arguments over what would have been proper or desirable management for GMU 13D as an alternative to what ADF&G established there.

    The data still indicate 13D would be a terrific trophy management area.

    Just some ancient history. Regards to all.

    Wayne Heimer

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