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Thread: Introduce deer and Elk to South Central Alaska

  1. #1

    Default Introduce deer and Elk to South Central Alaska

    As we all know the winters are much more mellow then they were twenty five years ago. As a matter of fact much of New England now have worse winter weather then we do. With that being said i am looking at opinions on the pros and cons of introducing deer in huntable numbers to the South Central valley, penninsula, Fairbanks area. They live with moose in the lower 48 states, why not try it here. The South central area could probaly controll the population of them through liberal hunting as this area is where the most people live. I think if they could find a way to do it it would be great to have another big game species avalibale for harvest. But you never know when you mess with mother nature. Opinions? Thanks Viktor

  2. #2
    Member RANGER RICK's Avatar
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    That sounds like a fine idea for sure .
    I would like to see Mule deer introduced to Kodiak !!! and Elk planted her on the penninsula !!!!
    Let the hunting season begain !!!!!!!

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    Default game introduction

    Victor, While it would be fun to have even more hunting oportunities, I doubt fish and game is interested in introducing more species to southcentral.

    The main reason would be containment. They don't want an introduced species taking over habitat that a native animal occupies. If you'll notice, the introductions that have been done over the years are on the islands of Southeast, Prince William Sound, Kodiak, the Aleutians, and I believe Nunivak. The herds can be contained (sort of). The introductions have also been done where no Native species will be disturbed. (hopefully) On Kodiak there were no large land animals except bear before deer, elk, caribou, and goats were introduced there. But there was plenty of habitat available. The elk were supposed to stay on Afognak, but have spread to Raspberry and now Kodiak Island. They're trying to beat down the Kodiak herds with very liberal seasons, but so far they seem to be spreading. And I've heard of deer being spotted swimming way out in Shelikoff Straights so it's possible some have made it to the Alaska Penninsula, tho I haven't heard of any documented sightings.

    And we all know how the deer from the islands of Prince William Sound have made their way to Anchorage. The elk planted on Etolin Island in southeast are spreading to other islands too.

    So this is a worry if new species were introduced to the mainland.

  4. #4

    Default Outdated Arguement

    Quote Originally Posted by twodux
    Victor, While it would be fun to have even more hunting oportunities, I doubt fish and game is interested in introducing more species to southcentral.

    The main reason would be containment. They don't want an introduced species taking over habitat that a native animal occupies. If you'll notice, the introductions that have been done over the years are on the islands of Southeast, Prince William Sound, Kodiak, the Aleutians, and I believe Nunivak. The herds can be contained (sort of). The introductions have also been done where no Native species will be disturbed. (hopefully) On Kodiak there were no large land animals except bear before deer, elk, caribou, and goats were introduced there. But there was plenty of habitat available. The elk were supposed to stay on Afognak, but have spread to Raspberry and now Kodiak Island. They're trying to beat down the Kodiak herds with very liberal seasons, but so far they seem to be spreading. And I've heard of deer being spotted swimming way out in Shelikoff Straights so it's possible some have made it to the Alaska Penninsula, tho I haven't heard of any documented sightings.

    And we all know how the deer from the islands of Prince William Sound have made their way to Anchorage. The elk planted on Etolin Island in southeast are spreading to other islands too.

    So this is a worry if new species were introduced to the mainland.
    This arguement is dated. The ecology of the mainland has changed so dramatically over the past hundred years, that is only makes sense to responsibly introduce species that can now prosper. There are changes that have taken place, that native species can no longer sustain population levels that meet Alaskans needs. As these ecological changes occur, we must change as well. There are miles and miles, of nothing but miles and miles in Alaska, this could be turned around, if open minded individuals were in positions to effect change. Not much hope of that happening soon though.

  5. #5
    Member BRWNBR's Avatar
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    I'm thinkin' i'd leave things the way they are right now, a non-native species to south central would probably screw a few things up...first off we'd have people shooting elk thinking they were moose, just cause we live in AK don't mean we don't have stupid people. Then the numbers issue would play into it...moose would go down or dispearse more an so would the elk, then it would all become drawing and we'd all complain about no tags and we'd have to pay fish and game more money to study more animals we can't hunt cause we can't draw tags.
    mule deer on kodiak i dont' think i'd want to see...i think the blacktails offered there is a unique hunt, granted mule deer would be as well, but for elk and mulies, if thats whats important i've got no problem taking my money somewhere else and sharing it with another community in the lower 48, so many of them come up here and share with us every year, seems only just.
    i'd much rather see better moose numbers and hunt them than the elk or deer. feel free to drop them on all the island in PWS though....but the mainland would interfer with alot of issue we don't see on the surface...

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    Default Another consequence

    Another consequence no one wants is if a native species is threatened because of habitat loss, the feds will swoop in and put them on an endangered list and then sit back and see what that does to your hunting opportunities.

    But the main thing is..... Alaska is unique because of what it already offers. Why try to make it like some place in the lower 48? If that's what you want, move back there. I like it just the way it is now.

  7. #7

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    I like the idea of keeping Alaska the way it it, thats why people come here to hunt moose, grizzlies and sheep. You can't hunt them in the lower 48 without a limited draw permit. The moose have enough to do to survive up here without the added burden of competing with elk and deer.

  8. #8

    Default non-native species not good

    I am kind of surprised that after all that has happened in other areas when non-native species are introduced and altered the habitats, sometimes overwhelming at worst and making life always more difficult for native species that people still want to continue doing it. It seems to me that the natural course of events has been the best and wisest plan, except perhaps for our own. I don't think that wanting to undertake such a dynamic "project" basically for our own entertainment makes much sense. I agree that we have a nice enough variety of game here now, purposeful for an incredibly long time. By the way, I am a hunter myself, though I have talked to a few trees, especially when they have fallen across my trail and require removal to continue forward progress. Thanks

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