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Thread: Another good opinion piece

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    Member martentrapper's Avatar
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    Default Another good opinion piece

    This is a "compass" piece like the one written by bushrat. I enjoyed this one immensely. Hit's some important points.



    http://www.adn.com/opinion/compass/story/707314.html
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    Quote Originally Posted by martentrapper View Post
    This is a "compass" piece like the one written by bushrat. I enjoyed this one immensely. Hit's some important points.



    http://www.adn.com/opinion/compass/story/707314.html

    Agreed, but if we really want to manage for abundance does it make any sense at all to be giving away so much of our resources to nonresident hunters?

    I just don't see the 'truth' in advertising with this abundance management theory including all the energy that goes into constant annual tweaking of game regulations to sustain a commercial hunting guide industry?

    WHY would Fleenor leave that little bit of 'truth' out of his compass piece?


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    Forum Admin Brian M's Avatar
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    Thanks for sharing this, martentrapper. I'd agree that some good points were made.

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    Default With honest passion

    were both Mark Richardsons and Craig Fleener's articles written.

    As I read Craigs piece, I thought that it would be cool to have Ms. Ashley Judd sitting in the same room as Craig.
    She holding in her lap and petting her Cocker spaniel as Craig Fleener
    explained the true subsistance life to a quiet and attentive audience. With the honest and true validation of a Native Alaskan Elder talking with precise language and expression,... I would imagine it would be difficult for someone to attempt a debate of his plea.
    But then again...,, it could not happen, as those that oppose his opinions could care less of his heritage. because...
    You can't fix stupid.....

    Thanks for pointing them out for our reading pleasure.
    Max
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    Default Beware

    Subsistence hunters need to beware of getting involved with any plans trumpeted by the AOC and SFW and like minded organizations. #1 reason is, these organizations are against subsistence hunting and rural priority. After they flex their political muscle on the predator control issue, they are just as likely to flex it trying to get rid of rural preference. To these groups, subsistence hunters are just another predator who gets in the way of their members for hunting opportunity.

    Probably won't happen this year, but when the habitat gets destroyed from too many animals and a bad winter hits and game populations plummet, who are they going to have to blame when they've already gotten rid of the predators? Subsistence hunters, that's who.

    If game populations take off like they plan, there will be an even bigger industry grown around it than there already is. Everybody might be happy for a while, but I doubt subsistence hunters will be pleased with the influx of outsiders. But when the inevitable downturn in game populations occurs, do you think the big money making machine of a hunting industry will meekly say, "It's best this year if we leave what little game there is to subsistence hunters"? Not much chance of that. They have the money and the political influence.

    I can hear them now..... "There wouldn't have been any animals out there for those people if we hadn't gotten rid of all those pesky predators. We earned the right to be able to hunt by growing Alaska's game population. If they need food, too bad. They need to leave the villages and get a job!"

    Beware of making bargains with the devil.

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    Forum Admin Brian M's Avatar
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    What I think this piece and the one by Bob Bell miss are a discussion of the methods of predator control. I am in favor of managing for abundance, and I certainly agree with much of what they have to say with regards to food being a priority in our game management. This piece doesn't mention the means that are being suggested to achieve these goals, however. We need to have a discussion of whether engaging non-residents in predator contol, using helicopters, and snaring bears are the right direction to go in the pursuit to grow moose and caribou populations.

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    Member martentrapper's Avatar
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    Looks like Dux is just as confused about game management in Alaska as Goalie is over on the bowhunting forum.
    Dux, the state does not have a rural priority. Mr. Fleeners piece is about STATE pred control. State and private lands are the only places any kind of serious pred control can be done by the state.
    Rural pref. only applies under fed (ANILCA) law and only applies on fed land. The SFW, AOC only have proposals before the BoG and this has no effect on the federal rural pref.
    The state uses the Tier system to protect subsistence uses during times of pop. down turns and tho this system is not a "rural" preferance, it does account for where one lives. When the inevitable down turn comes, and pop's of a certain species fall below a certain level, it won't matter what the "big money hunting machine" wants. State law will send hunting into the Tier I or II system and locals will have a preferance.
    For the most part, dux, your crying wolf!
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    Default predator control

    For all you out there who think predator control is the great panacea that will solve all of Alaska's hunting problems, it might be a good idea to take a look at south central deer hunting to see what is likely to become of such a plan.

    Deer were transplanted to Kodiak and Prince William Sound in the early 1900's to fill a void in local hunting opportunities. The islands where these deer live have few predators. Kodiak has only brown bears which are poor deer hunters. Prince William Sound has Brownies and on a few islands black bears. There are no wolves. In the beginning, the great habitat and lack of predators allowed both populations to grow until bad winters and winter browse problems started a series of crashes. What happens is the herds out-breed their winter range. You send too many animals into a bad winter and before they die off, they strip and severely damage their winter range. This has a two fold effect. First you get the die off, then you are left with a winter range that won't support near the numbers it did in the past. It can take decades to recover. I've seen reports about the Prince William Sound winter range and the damage it received in the late 50's or early 60's. It took decades for the damage to be undone. I'll try to find something online and post a link.

    The thing about deer in these two areas, when the hunting is good, it's great. But then you pay for it with the bad years to follow.

    Is this what Alaskans want for the rest of their big game?

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    Default MT

    Quote Originally Posted by martentrapper View Post
    Looks like Dux is just as confused about game management in Alaska as Goalie is over on the bowhunting forum.
    Dux, the state does not have a rural priority. Mr. Fleeners piece is about STATE pred control. State and private lands are the only places any kind of serious pred control can be done by the state.
    Rural pref. only applies under fed (ANILCA) law and only applies on fed land. The SFW, AOC only have proposals before the BoG and this has no effect on the federal rural pref.
    The state uses the Tier system to protect subsistence uses during times of pop. down turns and tho this system is not a "rural" preferance, it does account for where one lives. When the inevitable down turn comes, and pop's of a certain species fall below a certain level, it won't matter what the "big money hunting machine" wants. State law will send hunting into the Tier I or II system and locals will have a preferance.
    For the most part, dux, your crying wolf!
    I'm not crying at all MT. But a lot of Alaskan hunters will be if this folly is carried out.

    You forgot to mention that the reason there is a federal rural preference is because the state refused to have a rural preference. That is because of the AOC and their supporters. THEY fought Alaskan rural preference, and the Feds stepped in. That right there should show rural users the intentions of the AOC and now the SFW. Seems the a lot of the same people are involved with both.

    Tier l and tier ll are a joke. It is a "who's the biggest liar" contest. It also gives people who have the means to hunt anywhere, a way to push aside local hunters who can't afford to travel for their hunting. I'll bet you'd just love it if some guy from Anchorage beat you out for a tier ll permit in your locale and you had to travel to the Mat-Su or Kenai to do your hunting.

    But you're protected by that Federal rural preference and you know it. So you can sit out there and be smug. But the State and the AOC and SFW don't care about a whit about you. As they grow in strength and power tho, don't be so sure they won't come after your preference on a Federal level. You'd better believe that with their connections, they are planting a bug in somebody's ear.

    At least you admit there will be an inevitable down turn.

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    Default MT

    And MT, when the inevitable crash comes, It's sad to think you will have to depend on hunting those federal lands that have no predator control to make your living. That might bring a tear to my eye.

  11. #11

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    Quote Originally Posted by martentrapper View Post
    Mr. Fleeners piece is about STATE pred control. State and private lands are the only places any kind of serious pred control can be done by the state.Rural pref. only applies under fed (ANILCA) law and only applies on fed land.
    Game don't know the difference between federal land and state land.

    When the feds decide that the states intensive management scheme is threatening the 'natural' system as defined in the enabling preserve legislation and ANILCA we will see changes on our opportunities to hunt federal lands.

    Quote Originally Posted by martentrapper View Post
    The SFW, AOC only have proposals before the BoG and this has no effect on the federal rural pref.
    Bull. What APHA-SFW-AOC consistently propose are measure that are moving the feds a step closer to take a different approach to 'human use' management in preserves. Non-local hunters should be very aware and very concerned about the blow back potential of APHA-SFW-AOC proposals.

    In fact just look at the Noatak....there is not even a shortage of game and the Feds are dreaming up ways to keep non-local hunters out.

    It is absolutely evident that APHA-SFW-AOC or even the State are not standing up to the Feds at the Noatak. They all just rolled over. WHY? Because the Noatak superintendent did NOTHING to address the exclusive use and joint use commercial hunt guide concessions contracts and that's just fine with APHA-SFW-AOC.

    So non-local hunters got the boot and locals and the commercial hunt guide industry skated.

    APHA-SFW-AOC or even the current administration gives nothing more than lip service to the non-local...non-guided hunters interests.

    Quote Originally Posted by martentrapper View Post
    The state uses the Tier system to protect subsistence uses during times of pop. down turns and tho this system is not a "rural" preferance, it does account for where one lives.
    APHA-SFW-AOC have and never will do anything to keep an area from going to the tier implementation stage. They just keep on taking till there is no alternative but to impose the tier scheme.

    Even though the NPS (Noatak) had the ability to stand down the commercial hunt guiding concessions contracts; cancel the contracts....they didn't.

    The problem is the state has no way, and clearly no intent of limiting the commercial hunt guiding industry BEFORE we get to the implementation of tier protocols and APHA-SFW-AOC is just fine with that.

    Obviously, Fleenor is riding for the brand.


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    I think I'm gonna let the BOG make their determinations, based on all the input from individuals and the different organizations. Some say the fix is in, if thats truely believed by those that think it, they probably won't go before the BOG, at least I would'nt, I wouldn't waste my money and time thinking I could go and change a corrupt group.
    As far as 'inevitable crashes' go, look at the history of Unit 13 Moose crashing. I blame only three 'things' that caused the crash, Tony Knowles, Friends of Animals and Defenders of wildlife. I testified these three things in front of the BOG in Juneau, while Knowles was still in office.
    My thinking is more along with what MT said.

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    Default Dedwuf

    Your opinion doesn't mesh with the biologists who were in the field during the decline.

    From 1997

    http://www.wildlife.alaska.gov/index....hntbul4#batin

    THE biggest problem in unit 13 was habitat. A few select quotes.

    "A large part of the Unit 13 moose range is sub-alpine, which is little affected by forest fires. This is generally good moose habitat. And while moose densities in these areas may now be fairly high, productivity is not as high as in the past, when moose were fewer and the population was growing.

    Which brings us to the double-edged sword in Unit 13 moose management.

    Testa explains: “Biologists don't want to increase the moose densities in 13 by very much because productivity—which at its best in the unit is only average for moose—would likely decline. For example, the twinning rate in unit 13A is only about 12%, one of the lowest reported in Alaska or Canada. This is why the department is not managing the entire unit to produce dramatically higher moose numbers, even though a few areas could possibly support a small increase.”

    In simplified, Unit 13 moose management terms, if 2+2 equals 4 moose, then 2+4 may still equal 4 moose. An increase in moose numbers will not necessarily lead to more moose to harvest.

    Because of declining moose habitat, wildlife viewers, hunters, and photographers should not expect to see the same numbers of moose in many areas of Unit 13 as they may have seen in the past. "

    Now I don't know about you, but to me that says the biologists didn't want to increase moose numbers because twinning rates showed that the unit was habitat stressed already. All increasing the numbers would have done is add to the problem. Also at the time numbers started down was a time when there was a large influx in the use of ATV's for hunting. PEOPLE were getting into areas they hadn't previously hunted. There were less safe areas for animals to get away from the crowds.

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    Member martentrapper's Avatar
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    No tears from me, dux. You base your statements on what has happened in your particular area. For the most part, those experiences aren't relevant to the rest of the state. The rural pref. currently doesn't do much for me. That is because animal pops where I live and hunt are decent, and no protection is needed. We are actually removing closures out here on moose and musk ox. Most places I choose to hunt these days are not federal land. Whatever downturns may or may not come here will likely not be such that we need to panic, or run to federal land, etc. etc.
    AV, I've been on the Fed RAC here for 4 years now. I just don't see the problems you warn of. There will always be some problems with managers, etc. Any major changes would have to come from congressional legislation, and that will be difficult. Other changes will have to come from the Fed board which will be available for public comment, just like the game board.
    The real problem with the fed-state thing is the failure of Tony Knowles to take the rural pref/subsistence issue to the high court and see if it really was constitutional.
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    Quote Originally Posted by martentrapper View Post
    I just don't see the problems you warn of. There will always be some problems with managers, etc. Any major changes would have to come from congressional legislation, and that will be difficult.
    not to hijack the thread...just using what is happening at the Noatak to illustrate a point.

    I agree that congressional legislation is not likely and the problem is managers.

    If the State does not even stand up to 'managers' and APHA-SFW-AOC lobby federal managers to do things like "managers" have done in the Noatak for instance then before you know it we have all federal manager independently establishing 'policy' outside of their authority.

    That's exactly how exclusive and joint use federal commercial hunting guide concessions came to pass. Now, as in the Noatak case, these commercial hunting concessions are viewed by the PS as some kind of 'partnership' and 'managers' are willing to shut out the non-guided interest to protect subsitence AND commercial hunting.

    Quote Originally Posted by martentrapper View Post
    Other changes will have to come from the Fed board which will be available for public comment, just like the game board.
    Yah...we know how that works.

    Quote Originally Posted by martentrapper View Post
    The real problem with the fed-state thing is the failure of Tony Knowles to take the rural pref/subsistence issue to the high court and see if it really was constitutional.
    Governorgirl is not even challenging 'managers' authority; let alone rasing a court challenge.

    Though gree that Knowles dropped the ball big time what governorgirl is doing by letting the Noatak manager get by with establishing policy outside of his authority is just as bad...if not worse.


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    Twodux, So you pulled a letter out of the mailbag.
    The main Biologist for Unit 13 is/was Bob Tobey. I think his opinion would differ from the 'letter writer'. His office is in Glennallen. Give him a call.
    Around 1989 Unit 13 had over 28,000 Moose, by 1997=98 there was over 7,500, during the period of declining Moose, wolf populations more than doubled. If you remember there was a 'push' for predator control in Unit 13, especially from 1995 thru 2000. However under the Knowles admin, it would have never happened. Fortunately (for the moose) we had a change of administration. There is no doubt the wolf predator program has worked.
    When the Ballard study was done around 1982, (when they netted grizzlies that were killing collared moose calves) close to 40 bears were moved approx. 100 air miles away, most returned within 2 weeks. One bear alone was responsible for killing 38 collared moose calves, and a unknown amount of uncollared calves. I was there, of and on for several days, and got to hold 2 bags of cubs on one occasion.
    In the past 10 years moose have been increasing, mostly the past 6 years. But that wasn't the way it went from 1989 thru 2000.
    Also during the 90's the bear population was severely under-estimated.
    Last edited by DEDWUF; 03-02-2009 at 22:48. Reason: Name change

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    Quote Originally Posted by DEDWUF View Post
    Twodux, So you pulled a letter out of the mailbag.
    The main Biologist for Unit 13 is/was Bob Tobey. I think his opinion would differ from the 'letter writer'. His office is in Glennallen. Give him a call.
    Around 1989 Unit 13 had over 28,000 Moose, by 1997=98 there was over 7,500, during the period of declining Moose, wolf populations more than doubled. If you remember there was a 'push' for predator control in Unit 13, especially from 1995 thru 2000. However under the Knowles admin, it would have never happened. Fortunately (for the moose) we had a change of administration. There is no doubt the wolf predator program has worked.
    When the Ballard study was done around 1982, (when they netted grizzlies that were killing collared moose calves) close to 40 bears were moved approx. 100 air miles away, most returned within 2 weeks. One bear alone was responsible for killing 38 collared moose calves, and a unknown amount of uncollared calves. I was there, of and on for several days, and got to hold 2 bags of cubs on one occasion.
    In the past 10 years moose have been increasing, mostly the past 6 years. But that wasn't the way it went from 1989 thru 2000.
    Also during the 90's the bear population was severely under-estimated.
    A letter out of the mailbag? Did you even go to the link and read the whole article? It was from the Dept of Fish and Game's website. The Alaska Hunting Bulletin. The person speaking for ADF&G was Dr. Ward Tetsa, he was a research biologist studying Unit 13A moose. It's a pretty in depth piece. It also mentions the bear transplant you talked about and said pretty much it was impractical.

    He also mentioned that bears rather than wolves were the main problem with calf predation.

    Another interesting quote....

    "Unit 13 has been managed for bulls-only hunting during the past decade. Faced with the low bull:cow ratio in GMU 13A in the late 1980s, managers restricted harvest to spike-fork only in that subunit, and quickly built up a surplus of large bulls. In 1993-94, hunters began harvesting those large bulls, and a lot of nice moose were taken the first two years. The take of large bulls from Unit 13A has since declined. Testa said the current ratio of 15 bulls per 100 cows is lower than what most managers are comfortable with, but still not at a crisis level. Hunting in the entire unit is now limited to spike- or fork-antlered moose or those with 3 brow tines or at least 50" antler spread."

    So it appears that in the late 80's that you were talking about, biologists were concerned with bull/cow ratios enough to go to a spike/fork rule to protect large bulls. Usually, when the bull/cow ratio gets out of whack, the culprit is hunting. Then they reopened mature bull hunting and they had a couple good years because of the build up during the spike/fork years. After a few years of hunting the big bulls, they again had a bull/cow ratio problem.

    What this appears to say is hunting was affecting the bull numbers, but management managed to create more big bulls by managing the hunters, then hunting again knocked the bull numbers down. I don't know any other predator that concentrates on taking mature bulls.

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    Default Moose #'s are up in 13.

    Moose number in 13 are good enought that ADF&G will open up 4 new areas to "ANY BULL". Bio also mentioned the bull to cow ratio is around 35 to 100.

    He also mentioned that these numbers have increased since predator control started in 2000.

    Make sure all you that are against predator control don't put in for these tags!

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    Quote Originally Posted by tv321 View Post
    Moose number in 13 are good enought that ADF&G will open up 4 new areas to "ANY BULL".
    Wouldn't the BOG have to open these hunts, rather than ADF&G?

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    Smile

    Well the good thing about Unit 13 is that its easily accessible so it can be intensely managed for steady and high productivity. There is no reason the biologists would let the population overbrowse and crash. They could easily have a cow hunt to keep populations steady like in Unit 20 if needed. And spike/fork 50 will assure good numbers of breeding bulls. Just remember twodux that without predator control the populations can peak and crash or turn into predator sinks with very low numbers of moose as unmanaged populations do. Ideally with predator control the predators return at manageable levels after the prey population grows sufficiently to support them so its win/win. With more active management like this in Unit 13 more hunting opportunities can be created in this easily accessable unit.
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