There is a strong undercurrent of protectionism among those who post on this forum. That is no surprise (IMO). One might expect that people who post on an Alaskan hunting forum would be pro-Alaska.
It is also no surprise that people who post here think Alaska is the "be-all, end-all" of states in the union. While I do enjoy hunting & fishing in Alaska, I have absolutely no desire to live in Alaska. Not only that but I know several who have lived in Alaska for varying amounts of time who have chosen to move on.
Every state practices protectionism in some form. Even some countries (New Zealand & Australia come tomind) practice it to some degree. I suspect some states practice protectionism in retribution but other states practice it because they have unique species or areas they want to protect.
One question that comes to mind is - How much is appropriate? Should reciprocity be the quideline? 10%? 20%? I have no great answers. Where a species is truely unique, some states have gone to a "once-in-a-lifetime" for everyone.
It should come as no great surprise to most that changes have & are occuring - especially as populations increase. What remains to be seen is how we deal with these changes.
BTW, I happen to think that I have just as much right to hunt Federal land as anyone - resident or not. State or private land is another situation. And, yes, it does irritate me that I have no way to circumvent the guide requirements for some species in Alaska (since I have no relatives living there).
Is it fair that Alaska is over 60 percent federal land??? Please name another state with a similar ratio? I am glad many outsiders believe Alaska should be a federal park for their own uninhibited use...you say protectionism, I say secession.
Phil, I agree with you in that I think it is bogus that you are required to have a guide to hunt sheep, goats, and brown bears up here. I also think it is bogus that non-residents of Colorado have a similar restriction for hunting certain species in certain areas.
Originally Posted by Phil
However, I have to disagree about Alaska not being the "end all and be all" for most hunters. Why? Well I'm willing to bet that if you took a poll of hunters nation wide and asked them if they had a chance to have a dream hunt in any state of the union which state would you choose I'm willing to bet that New York would fall VASTLY behind Alaska as would just about any other state. So is it the end all be all for everyone, well no. But it is for LOTS of people. And if everyone one of these folks that wish to have a dream hunt in Alaska do it once or twice in their life time that is still a TON of people coming up to AK to go hunting. Again it comes down to supply and demand whether if just coming to Alaska for the animals for the whole "hunting in Alaska" experience but make no mistake the demand for the number of non-residents to hunt in Alaska is VERY high in relation to the actual supply of some of these species to hunt. Thus the permits and Alaskans have a vested interest also to not wish for overharvesting as well as they hunt the same areas year after year whereas some of those non-residents that come up for their dream once or twice in a lifetime hunt don't have the vested interest or concern in an over harvest as long as they are allowed to get their animals on their one hunt to AK. Not saying anyone that is a non-resident thinks this way, or that all residents are concerned about over harvest I'm just showing the point that the concern among residents is higher than non-residents.
Last edited by Alaska_Lanche; 10-19-2009 at 14:54.
J in AK'
I might remind you that it was a New Yorker who pushed to buy Alaska from Russia.
As to other states with large percentages of Federal land? Pick any western state. Since you asked for specifics - Wyoming is over 50% federal.
It's equally bogus that Wyoming requires a guide to hunt Wilderness Tracts (but not if you are fishing). That's just "the way it is".
I'm amused that people who move to Alaska expect it to remain "as it was" in spite of their arrival. I would suspect that, given the same chance at drawing a tag, many people (including myself) would just as soon hunt goats, sheep, or brown bears in most any western state as in Alaska. In fact, I would rather hunt any of them in Wyoming if for no other reason that it is a much easier (and cheaper) destination.
One thing is for sure - IF the human population continues to increase - there will be LOTS of changes to hunting in Alaska. In that realm, I am less a part of the problem than people who settle in Alaska.
Yes any law that REQUIRES you to hunt an animal with a guide in order to do so I think is absurd.
Originally Posted by Phil
Yes I bet some would choose to hunt sheep/goats/ and brown bear in other states if given the chance over Alaska, but the reality the opportunity to do is so MUCH less there thus the majority of folks looking to do these dream hunts end up in Canada and Alaska. Also I still think many would choose AK over western states due to the fact that unlike yourself who has hunted up here in AK numerous times the novelity of a chance to hunt in Alaska is MUCH higher than say Colorado. Especially if the guide requirement for these species was removed in Alaska.
I'm not aware of this restriction. Can you enlighten me?
Originally Posted by Alaska_Lanche
There isn't Phil had it right. It was Wyoming I was thinking of that had this restriciton.
Originally Posted by Oak
Phil - One reason that I have a bit of a "protectionist" streak in me is that a far larger percentage of Alaskans rely on wild food sources for a significant portion of their diet compared to other states. We eat wild protein six out of seven days (at least), and often as parts of many meals per day. Should that give me some sort of preference compared to non-residents? Yeah, I think it should. I know there are people in the lower 48 that eat a lot of venison, etc, but I am certain that the overall reliance on wild food sources is far greater in Alaska.
And yes, you do have a way to circumvent the guide requirement in Alaska for certain species. Move here.
While I am not "totally" against non-resident hunting, I do get upset when non-residents have the "same" opportunity as residents when the resource is limited. I don't view my hunts as "trophy" hunts. My hunts are "supplying" my meat source for the winter first, trophy second. I feel when resources as limited, non-residents should either be eliminated or reduced to no more than 10% of the available tags.
I see NO reason to limit Alaskan's to "once in a lifetime" permits when non-residents have no limit if they have the money.
And yes, I do feel just fine that non-residents must have a guide for the species required. If there wasn't a guide requirement, there would be a SERIOUS amount of non-residents hunting those species.
I feel that my job as an Alaskan is the protect Alaskan interests first. If there is a problem with the resource, those that live furthest away and that will be the least likely affected by not being able to hunt should be the first to be taken out of the equation.
As for federal land up here, it might be "federal" but with ANILCA, it is "special" federal land that protects the subsistence rights of those that qualify. There is simply no reason to be upset about it, as it is set in stone and nothing is going to change that.
Some would like to see oil dry up and tour ships go away.Some say how the heck can they sell what ain't theirs. Some say they and their families lived just fine and better before statehood.Some like out of state hunters and some don't.Some think the SE should be a state on its own.Problem is in todays world it no longer matters what folks think.
Some just find it a lot easier to write a game proposal that will eliminate or restrict completion rather than put forth either the physical effort and/or take the necessary time to develop skills that will enhance their chances of success.
Originally Posted by Phil
Simply not true
Originally Posted by wantj43
That statement is simply not true. Not one to toot my own horn, but I will do whatever is needed to go the extra distance or learn more skills to be a better hunter. When I see "local" people (Alaskan's) having a hard time putting food on the table, I see no other choice but the take out the non-resident factor. I not only put in the time and effort, but do "more" than my fair share of predator control. Am I selfish??? Maybe, but so be it. I would much rather protect the resource now, than see everything go to hell in a hand basket and see all hunts become limited for everyone.
Some good points already made by others.
I've already seen incredible changes to hunting in Alaska since I first got here in 1980. Yes, change is inevitable, but we can also direct that change so the impacts aren't as harsh, and don't completely change hunting in Alaska.
Re fed lands, I hear you on that, the notion that any American citizen should be allowed equal opportunity to hunt on lands owned by all, but federal law disagrees with you and allows states to discriminate against non-residents, even when it involves fed lands. I don't see that changing, and don't have a problem with it being that way, to a degree.
In the end, it's about achieving some kind of acceptable parity between states. Recognizing that states like Alaska are entirely unique from the other 49, and that Alaskan resident hunters don't hunt in other states even close to what lower-48 residents do, and depend more on wild game for sustenance. Each state by law gets to decide what kind of caps or limits are placed on non-res hunters, what their license/tag fees are. Economics is a large part of it, how we fund our wildlife agencies, what kind of guide industry each state wants to see, how it impacts local economies too.
When money alone is the driver, what that typically does is decrease resident opportunity and increase user-group conflicts in the field, and it can also have negative effects on wildlife populations. When resident opportunity alone is the driver, that impacts funding for management, as well as individual guides and local economies, and can also negatively impact wildlife populations. We need to find an acceptable balance, to include imo (higher) license/tag fee prices and parity between states, better regulations that promote sustainability of wildlife populations and curb user-group conflicts in the field, while recognizing the inherent value of the guide industry to individuals (and clients) and local economies etc.
The protectionism you're seeing Phil is mostly because we have not yet adequately addressed everything in the above paragraph. Always appreciate your posts and respectful discussion, btw.
Well, I asked for comments - and I got them. I thank everyone who took the time to post something - whether or not I agree.
One thing we can probably all agree on is that "there are no easy answers to complex problems".
Thanks again to everyone.
Nevada, Alakska, Utah
Thats the order. Nevada actually is 85% Federal. Alaska and Utah are similar 60ish but I think Utah has more State Land that is controlled by the Feds. Unlike Alaska, the state owns most of the Military areas in Utah but the Military leases its use. Almost 10% of the state... and no hunting at all on those lands. Tons of pronghorn, deer, elk, and the most prized big game animal in north america the desert big horn sheep are off limits to resident hunters on state land. Yes other states have issues with management as well.
Originally Posted by J in AK
It is protectionism. Evryone on here is too quick to point the finger at the nonresident. Right now there are several threads on the board debating the 40mile caribou herd. One of the suggestions (real popular I might add) to alleviate the crowding is to not allow non-residents. Non-residents make up 9% of the harvest on that hunt. Reducing 80 caribou from the harvest is insignificant and not a viable solution. But its easy blame the non-residents.
Secession, please. The state couldn't afford it.
No one is "blaming" the non-residents for the 40 mile herd, we just feel they should have the same opportunity as residents. This is a herd traditionally has been used by local people for a meat source. 80 caribou might seem insignificant to you, but that is 80 more "local" families that would have meat in their freezer. That is not insignificant to those of us who live in the area.
Just to follow up on what Northway said (you left out the "not," Mike, in first sentence <grin>), I want to clarify further, yaifw. The reason the hunt will be changed isn't about the crowding, it's about exceeding the harvest quota. Since non-residents are part of that, it only makes sense they would be the first to get the axe. In all likelihood though, they will still be allowed some opportunity, we'll see.
Originally Posted by yaifw
I don't have my management report with me now but I believe the "Local Harvest" from that hunt is very small. Single digits I think, 6 animals taken by Eagle residents this fall. Don't blast too hard if thats wrong, like I said I don't have my data but I do remember reading it and thinking "Wow thats small". And in the early part of last the century it was a huge herd and the traditional use was by market hunters. I don't hear a lot of people clamoring to get back to those good old days.
Originally Posted by northway
As far as the semantics of exceeding the harvest quoto and crowding. I chose one word you chose the the more correct word. That doesn't change the fact that your suggestion was to disqualify non-residents to alleviate the problem. My point is they aren't the problem.
"It only makes sense that they should get the axe first" Why?
Simply because they are NOT residents. This is a HIGH interest hunt for AK residents and is a source of sustenance. This should be treated as so.
yaifw, I realize this is a controversial subject, with a lot of emotion attached to it.
Originally Posted by yaifw
If your answer is "protectionism" as to why non-residents should get the axe first, before residents, when an Alaska caribou herd is being overharvested, and non-residents are a part of it (8-11% of harvest is by non-residents)...I really don't understand that.
Who should get the axe first? If someone needs to have their opportunity limited, should it be residents only? Mix of both? How is limiting non-resident hunters first wrong? Even if it was true Eagle residents only harvested six caribou, why should non-residents have an equal opportunity that could take away from Eagle resident harvest?