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Federal Subsistence Board and Northwest Arctic Native Communities propose WSA21-01

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  • Federal Subsistence Board and Northwest Arctic Native Communities propose WSA21-01

    I'm saying NO to this closure proposal because it is another blatant, arbitrary misuse of the federal system by Northwest Arctic Native communities to propose closing federal lands for hunting to all non-local people.

    This illegitimate proposal has no scientific merit, no biological necessity, nor is it supported by ADFG.

    It is long time to challenge these repetitive actions of non sensical self-derived claims to all the caribou and moose in GMU 23 and 26A by native communities when unsupported by state wildlife management agencies and the science that drives effective state management. Access to public lands for hunting has been granted by the state of Alaska and the federal government since statehood was adopted in 1959, and for 60 years the state has observed and managed wildlife (at great financial expense) to make sound decisions concerning subsistence allocations, hunting bag limits and open seasons . These closures refute state wildlife management decisions, thereby discounting scientific data, resource allocations set by the BOG, and equal access to state wildlife resources. Hunters need to stay informed and take action by going on record against federal management of wild game in Alaska, specifically these types of arbitrary attempts to close public lands to hunting by non-locals. NO! If they want conflict resolution, the will get the opposite from me with this decision. I Ive been an Alaska resident for over half of my life span. I eat wild game from these regions and I vow to continue despite this attempt to block me from public lands in this region until ADFG and the BOG agrees to a closure..

    Until closures are supported by the State of Alaska, I will continue to hunt below the centurion mean high water mark on lands closed by this proposal and all like it on federal public lands..

    If you're an organization leader or member, get your hunters and political sympathizers involved to stop this closure BEFORE user conflict with defensive resolution becomes a tangible news event where non-local hunters clash with locals in these proposed closed landscapes...not over rights to hunt caribou but for the right to access public lands below mean high water. Everything below mean high water mark on navigable streams in Alaska are claimed by the state of Alaska, not the federal government,

    Enforcement of this closure is impossible due to man power and political grayness. The best action is to dissolve this proposal and defer to ADFG and the BOG as well as the Alaska State Hunting Regulations for legal hunting seasons and bag limits. WSA or not, I'm hunting GMU 23/26A this year now for sure!


  • #2
    Excuse my ignorance but is there a place that we can comment on this proposal?<br/><br/>Sent from my SM-G892A using Tapatalk<br/><br/>
    I will never be a "Prostaffer" its not that I am not good enough
    but its because I refuse to pimp products for free.


    • #3
      You'll have to do it during this period and date:

      Friday, April 23, 2021 from 5:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m. (or until the end of public participation) Teleconference: Toll Free: (877) 918-3011 Passcode: 8147177

      That's Alaska time!!


      • #4


        • #5
          yeah read from pages 84-95 of the transcripts from the NW Arctic AC meeting on proposals. Lisa Haas should be ashamed of herself. The same members Kramer and Enoch are constantly involved in these closure proposals, and they will use any language necessary (BUT no proof) from COVID to beavers for their lack of opportunities.

          Kramer even cited "all over Kotz" offenses of caribou being dropped off into trash cans around town by non-local hunters and a big white they want to cite "conservation" reasons for closing this region again. No pictures from anyone or any caribou in trash cans. No Trooper reports. Just fictitious hearsay, and the FSB should have a means to filter these absurdly creative and harmful proposals for the sake of good faith.


          • #6
            Well said Larry. This non Sense has to end. Federal land is public land and all Alaskans have the same right to it. They already receive more liberal seasons and bag limits


            • #7
              Originally posted by GrantKopplin View Post
              Well said Larry. This non Sense has to end. Federal land is public land and all Alaskans have the same right to it. They already receive more liberal seasons and bag limits
              And they blast Woods Bison when they are reintroduced. Hose entire herds of caribou. And the mother of them all, bring the whole village out to lay waste to a lost whale. But our rules are 'different'.
              Hunt Ethically. Respect the Environment.


              • #8
                Since this is a Federal issue why not ask Don, Dan, or Lisa for help? If you do, please post their response. It should be hilarious!


                • #9
                  Originally posted by SmokeRoss View Post

                  And they blast Woods Bison when they are reintroduced. Hose entire herds of caribou. And the mother of them all, bring the whole village out to lay waste to a lost whale. But our rules are 'different'.
                  Blast wood bison? To my knowledge, only one wood bison has been illegally poached, and the action was roundly criticized by the residents of nearby villages. Pretty broad brush to paint with when it's only happened once. That in no way reflects on the people who live in the area.


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by whiskeyjack View Post
                    Since this is a Federal issue why not ask Don, Dan, or Lisa for help? If you do, please post their response. It should be hilarious!
                    The first time this was tried I contacted those three and only Dan responded back with a "sorry nothing I can do" and now sends me campaign emails.
                    Last edited by AKducks; 4 weeks ago. Reason: I mistakenly said that Lisa responded that was incorrect it was Dan


                    • #11
                      Everyone on this board needs to write comments and send the to the link in this announcement. You have 5 days starting today.

                      You should also prepare concise statements and call into the public hearing. Information for that is also in this notice.


                      • #12
                        For those who could use an example of public testimony...Here's a 4min 10sec testimony (580 words) that I will deliver via tele-testimony next friday. The OSM usuaully allows 3-5 min testimonies, but I have been told that and prepared 5 min and then only given 3 min when i reached the podium. Catag84 is right, keep it short. I submitted written comments this morning. Four days left to submit.

                        Oppose WSA21-01

                        I’m Larry Bartlett, a 26-year resident of Alaska and 25-year harvester of WA Caribou. I’m also a 12-year Army Veteran, Disabled Veteran and father of two future hunters who rely on this state resource for non-local subsistence.

                        I served for 3 years as a member of the WA Caribou Herd Working Group starting in 2010 alongside the current chairman of the NWRAC. I left the group because of their misguided intentions to thwart non-local hunters and transporters.

                        In 2016 and 2017 I testified at public meetings against WSA 16-01 and 17-03/-04, during which seasons I also produced a 2.5-hour hunting documentary for community awareness, titled WSA 16-01: Hunt for Western Arctic Caribou. This film took place in the heart of GMU 23 and 26A from Kotzebue, where NWRAC members claim non-local hunting and transporter presence continue to negatively impact caribou migration and interrupt the continuation of subsistence use. The evidence within this film documented unbiased, factual field-based observations that contradicted all native hunches that formed the basis for closing federal lands under ANILCA Title 8.

                        In winter of 2017 a dozen copies of this film were provided to the NW RAC for review and a request to collaborate on ideas to reduce perceived user conflicts between local and non-local hunters. One hour after their meeting ended, I returned to their room and removed 12 copies of this project from the trash can by the door.

                        This is a valid reference because the same RAC members (1st and 2nd chairman) are perpetuating those same invalid claims with scintilla, not evidence.

                        WSA21-01 is an invalid proposal lacking the qualities of being factually sound and having substantial evidence-based support proving non-local hunters and transporter activity are threats to:
                        • Continuation of subsistence use
                        • Conservation of the caribou and moose population
                        If non-local hunters and transporters are responsible for those two concerns, then you must reference substantial evidence to support WSA21-01, but you must not pursue this special action request without it. Title 36 CFR 242.19 (b) 1 The proposed change is an unnecessary restriction on non-subsistence users because there is no data or evidence supporting this special action.

                        Furthermore, non-local hunters have planned and financed their 2021 hunt for WAH caribou and will be forced to pursue hunting below mean high water line on federal lands within GMU 23 and 26A but also on state land closest to huntable caribou. WSA21-01 will create unjustified displacement of hunting pressure on Teshekpuk Lake caribou within 26A. This non-migratory caribou population has one of the highest numbers of harvest of all herds (proportionate to its size) and a single community that relies heavily on harvest sustainability. Consideration of the plausible negative impact on Teshekpuk caribou and tangible user conflict that will be created by this proposal must be weighed against the disputable hunches of a few active RAC members in Kotzebue.

                        Lastly, WSA21-01 has no factual, scientific, biological or evidence-based grounds for closing federal public lands to hunting by non-locals. If this proposal passes, I will challenge the authority of the FSB and respectfully encourage federal LEOs to search for my camp in these closed areas. Until the state of Alaska wildlife management and the BOG agrees with imposing hunting restrictions on non-subsistence users, or until such time that the proponent presents sufficient evidence to support their distaste for non-local hunters, I will pursue my right to hunt in GMU 23 and 26 despite the OSM decision on this matter.

                        WSA21-01 is a commanding NO.


                        • #13
                          Here is a link to our RHAK LETTER opposing WSA 21-01. New call in time period for this friday, now 3-7pm (and continuing after 7 if more on the line).

                          I think the Unit 13 closure last year was the tipping point, at least I hope so...there is a boatload of interest in this one and I hope it makes the difference.

                          Edit: forgot to add, I've gotten some questions like 'why would the Federal Subsistence Board even propose this?" or "why would the board even hear this?" This didn't come from the FSB, and by law they have to hear the proposal and vote on it.
                          Mark Richards


                          • #14
                            Thanks for the update Mark. I see these proposals to close federal lands to hunting on the basis of ANILCA as a joint venture between the 1) the power of a RAC to propose whatever they want and 2) the OSM staff and its purpose to facilitate the RACs to empower subsistence agendas, The RACs submit a proposal, the OSM works with them to wordsmith a proposal, and the proposal gets reviewed by the FSB for "analysis" before a decision is made.

                            Seems to me the FSB needs the Secretary of the Interior's approval that "substantial evidence" supports restricting non-locals, especially when a biological necessity is lacking.

                            Have you knowledge of the specific individuals responsible for "concluding the analysis" of the FSB proposals?


                            • #15
                              This is disheartening to me because I feel there is no chance of winning the position. I've given written and oral public testimony against it before, but I feel like it went unheard because the decision was already made. My efforts included dozens of letters and phone calls to government officials and groups that could/did support my opposition to it. Even if it ended up in court, can you overcome a new societal bias for cultural sensitivity, especially because they have repeatedly ignored science and the State's position?

                              This appears to be another situation where the cultural and social sensitivities narrative supersedes science, reason, and advocation for the good of the many vs. the few. Its following the same unfortunate path of the rest of the our country's business- pandering to the few as long as they are the right race, color, origin, orientation, etc. We're only as free as they let us be now is how I feel.

                              I applaud those of you who are opposing it and actively fighting against it. Keep up your good work.


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