Claim the privilege of hunting according to the dictates of your own conscience, and allow all hunters the same privilege;
let them practice how, where, or what they may.








Saturday, September 19, 2009

Saturday Blog Rodeo 9/19/09

© 2009 Albert A Rasch and
The Rasch Outdoor Chronicles
$g&m f9bd 45kd q!?5.
The Best of Outdoor Blogging
Week of 9/12/09 thru 9/19/09

Another Saturday, another Rodeo! It's been three or four weeks now, and not one of you have sent me a post, even an old one that you wanted to brag about! Don't be shy, send the good ones to me, and I'll highlight it here.

The Mighty 2-Bore Muzzleloader
is one of several firearms highlighted by The Firearm Blog this week. Now to be honest, I have always wanted an 8-bore paradox style rifle. The 2-bore, which by the way throws out an impressive 8 ounce ball versus the 8-bore's 2 ounce, is probably a bit much even for my tastes. How Steve gets all the info he does is beyond me, but he does, and I am glad for it. Go check it out!

From my favorite update/security/computer guru, BorePatch, comes another tidbit of advise: Bore Patch: Recommended Security Tool - Secunia Personal Software Inspector This is another great little tool that Borepatch has dug up for us! Security it's not just a job, it's a way of life.

Phillip over at the Hog Blog, has reviewed a great scientific book on hogs, Hog Blog Book Review – Wild Pigs in the US. Written by one of the foremost wild pig researchers in this country, John Mayer, along with Lehr Brisbin, it was actually a very good and informative read. It has the Hog Blog seal of educational approval!

Wandering Owl has a fantastic post on the Kublai Kahn's game management edicts from way back in the day. In his post Hunting History: Kublai Khan's Game Management Orders, the Wandering Owl shares with us several of the Khan's rules and regulations for hunting on his turf. "The first clear record of a system of game management, and the first man-made laws to protect game, is found in the Mongol Empire, not Europe. According to the writings of Marco Polo, the Venetian traveler, recorded almost 700 years ago, Kublai, "The Great Khan" (1216-1294) was not only a great hunter but one who appreciated the fact that wildlife must have a place to live, with plenty of food, and that it must not be taken during the breeding season if it is to survive and increase."

We all have our moments, where we face deaths that transcend the normal (if there is such a thing) every day death that we know. Over at NorCalCazadora, Holly confronts one of those moments. The Unpleasant Task of Dressing Pear Jack reminds us that sometimes there are unpleasant unintended consequences to our actions. But as a wise man once said to me, "You don't git sumthin fo' nuthin." Another great one to think about.

From my number one Blogging Bud Rick at Whitetail Woods, comes After the Shot, What Should You do? Short and sweet, wait. But the truth is Rick tells it so much better than I just did. Don't forget to check out his archives, great stuff there too.

Good ol' Bore Patch has a great video for everyone to see. Take a look at the AA12, a drum fed assault shotgun in his post ZOMG! Lots of Zombies. The thing is awesome, and awe inspiring. I'm putting that on my Chronicles Wish List.

Good 'ol Doug over at Harris' Hawk Blog has put together a fine post, Sometimes it is Hard to See the Forest..., "Those damn trees get in the way. One of the problems with the conservation debate that you see so often is that people focus on one animal; this deer, that goose, instead of looking at species as a whole." Doug has been really giving a lot of thought to several issues lately, and I have seen his comments all over the blogosphere; I suggest everyone take a closer look at his work. It's good.

Best Regards,
Albert

Friday, September 18, 2009

Larry Heathington Found Alive!

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UPDATE_UPDATE_UPDATE
Larry Heathington Found Alive!

I don't have any details yet, but a phone call has been received by Don Martin a close friend of Larry. It appears that Larry was assaulted, knocked out, and dumped somewhere in New Mexico.

As soon as I get the details I'll fill everyone in.

Albert

Feeders, Feeding, Food Plots: Are they Fair?

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I was doing my daily readings of the bazillion blogs I follow, when an article on Extreme Outdoor caught my eye. To Feed, or Not to Feed? That is the Question... is as contentious a subject as there ever is. It's right up there with High Fence hunting if you ask me. And I am always looking for contentious!

I wrote Paul and asked him if he would mind if I reprinted it here on The Rasch Outdoor Chronicles. Paul graciously and enthusiastically agreed to the proposal. My hope is to get a good discussion going and once again learn new perspectives from my fellow hunters.



While doing my daily run-through of the blogs I follow, I came across an article written by Rick at Whitetail Woods. His article entitled Deer Feeders, Can be Worth Added Cost particularly caught my eye. Rick featured a tri-pod style feeder he encountered while at a friend's house. He did a great job giving specifications of the product. While the post was aesthetically flawless, I couldn't help but think about the implications of using a feeder, and perhaps the "ethical" dilemma that comes with it. Since I couldn't get the subject out of my mind, I decided to create a post to further explore this issue.

I'd like to start this off with a short story. When I started turkey hunting, I learned that a semi-distant relative hunted land very close to the land I was hunting. Every year, he harvested a large Eastern Turkey. After hunting hard and having little luck, I wondered how the heck he managed to do so well every year. I eventually found out his secret. Prior to and during the hunting season, he would take a bucket of corn and dump it in front of his favorite place to sit in the woods. Every day, equipped with a new bucket of corn, he took to the woods. He never had to wait long to pick the bird of his choice to harvest.

The BIG questions here: Is this cheating? Is baiting, in general, a dishonest way to hunt?

At the time, I'll admit I was furious at the idea of baiting or feeding. What he was doing took no skill. He never had to call or stalk the turkeys. He just had to sit there and wait. It wouldn't matter if he spooked the birds off--they would be back for more corn, and he would be waiting for them (another BIG question: Is this really hunting?)

My initial reaction is this:
Is this cheating? Yes. By placing a food source in an area and intentionally sitting over it for the purpose of harvesting animals gives the hunter an unfair advantage over the game they are after.

I wanted to push the issue a little further, and the first comment on Rick's post helps me do so. "Native" writes:

"Great thing that feeders are starting to lose their undeserved stigma Rick! It is so funny how (here in California) a person will disparage the use of a feeder, but will go right out the very next morning to hunt over a Barley Field. Same thing No? The other reality is the fact that we must supplement the food source for today's wild life. Just as with Factory Farming for people, so must it be with our wild life because there just ain't enough land to support us all anymore without doing so"

"Native" brings up a very good point. What is the difference between placing your stand in the corner of a cornfield and throwing out a bucket of corn every day? Either way, the hunter is taking advantage of the fact that animals have to eat. If placing the stand in the corner of a corn field is considered smart for understanding that game will travel to and from this location, then using a bucket corn or any food supplement should also make the hunter "smart" for doing so...not a cheater.

One might suggest that there is still a clear difference between using a feeder or food plot and sitting on the edge of a corn field: a feeder or food plot has one specific purpose--to attract animals. A corn or bean field might be considered a more "natural" food source for animals because they don't exist for wild game. The farmer who grows the field has an agenda for the crops, and that agenda doesn't include the feeding of wild animals. Because of this difference, one could also suggest the use of food plots or feeders should be rendered illegal because they are meant specifically for the attraction of wild game. While this solution seems logical for a "fair" hunt, it just can't happen for one simple reason: wildlife/habitat restoration. Every year, tons of money is spent to increase habitat for animals. This is exactly the same as creating a food plot or using a feeder. For example, a farmer patronizes the Conservation Reserve Program or CRP in a field on their land to increase habitat for pheasants. The farmer also plans to hunt the pheasants when a decent population exists in the CRP. Creating habitat, even in the name of hunting, is seen as a noble cause. No one has a problem with this. But what is the difference between giving animals a home and giving them food? Creating a CRP field and feeding game can both be done in the name of hunting, and both benefit the wild game and hunters. If we allow increased habitat for hunting, we must allow feeders, food plots, and salt blocks.

Another approach to the matter: Feeders, food plots, and salt blocks are all methods of attracting wild game to a hunting area. Hunters use many means of attracting animals all the time. Scents, calls, and decoys are used every season to attract game and get them within shooting range. If we removed the use of food sources to attract game, it seems only logical to remove all forms of attracting during the season.

One must also keep in mind that not all regions have good food sources to begin with. While Iowa has lush corn fields that keep animals well fed all year, locations in the southern United States don't have this rich vegetation. Feeders and food plots supplement the health of the animals, as well as create hunting opportunities.

Some hunting scenarios require a food source for a successful harvest of game. Bear hunting is often done by baiting. While this doesn't seem like "hunting," it is often the only way to even see a bear and make a clean shot.

While I don't think feeders and food plots can logically be taken out of the hunting scene, I will not use them in my own hunting. Hunting itself is determined by the individual. Personally, I like to make my hunts as challenging as possible. If someone else defines hunting by results and chooses to do whatever it takes to get results, so be it. The same debate can be placed on many aspects of hunting: using a blind vs. not using a blind...using a modern bow vs. a traditional bow...hunting with a bow vs. hunting with a gun...the list is endless. In the end, hunting is what you make of it.

What do you think? Leave a comment and let me know--I'm curious to hear various opinions on the subject.

Paul Steeve

Yes please, a good and bracing conversation is what we all need after this week's shenanigans!

Regards,
Albert A Rasch
Member: Hunting Sportsmen of the United States HSUS (Let 'em sue me.)
The Hunt Continues...


The Rasch Outdoor Chronicles


Related Posts:

Giving Conservation a Bad Name
Game Reserves, High Fence Hunting What are the Facts?
Sometimes it is Hard to See the Forest...
High Fence Hunting

Three Big Reasons...

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Release:NHFD
3 Reasons for Americans
to Respect Hunters and Anglers

National Hunting and Fishing Day is set for Sept. 26, 2009. Congress formalized the annual celebration 37 years ago but organizers say hunters and anglers deserve America's respect now more than ever.

"Recent-year surveys show nearly 8 in 10 Americans approve of hunting and more than 9 in 10 approve of fishing. That's strong support. But, when viewed in the context of a recession and other modern headlines, our sporting traditions look even better today," said Denise Wagner of Wonders of Wildlife museum in Springfield, Mo., the official home of NHF Day.

She added, "On NHF Day, I hope people will pause to reflect on hunter and angler contributions to society. And for those of us who've long understood and enjoyed these passions, share the pride by introducing someone new to hunting, fishing or shooting."

Here are three reasons for the American public to value hunting and fishing today:

Economic Impact
No bailouts needed here. Hunting and angling together are an economic force worth $76 billion a year. In 2010, America's economic stimulus package will generate its highest level of federal spending at $236 billion—but hunters and anglers will spend almost a third of that amount all by themselves. A Congressional Sportsmen's Foundation report shows if hunters and anglers were a nation, their Gross Domestic Product would rank 57 out of 181 countries. About 1.6 million jobs depend on hunters and anglers. Gas stations, stores, restaurants, hotels and other businesses benefit, especially in rural America. And these recreations are comparatively recession proof. In the first half of 2009, hunting and fishing license sales actually gained 7.6 and 5.4 percent, respectively, over 2008, say the National Shooting Sports Foundation and Recreational Boating and Fishing Foundation.

Wildlife Management
Rabies, crop damages, nuisances. Hunting helps control these wildlife issues and many others—none more dramatic than highway accidents involving deer. White-tailed deer once were on the verge of extinction but rebounded behind historic conservation efforts. Today, deer numbers are skyrocketing. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety estimates 1.5 million deer collisions occur each year. Over 200 people are killed annually. According to a Western Transportation Institute calculation that includes costs of emergency response, injuries to driver and passengers, damages to vehicle and more, the 2009 average cost of hitting a deer is $6,600. Total public cost: $9.9 billion a year. Now consider that, nationwide, for every deer hit by a motorist, hunters take six. Imagine the human casualties and costs if hunting ended.

Conservation Funding
What if Congress announced a tax increase to cover $2 billion in annual expenses for conservation programs? Don't worry. Hunters and anglers are already paying that tab. For the privilege of consuming surplus, renewable game and fish resources, hunters and anglers purchase licenses. They also pay special excise taxes on firearms, ammunition, bows, arrows, rods and reels. Combined, these fees generate $100,000 every 30 minutes, more than $1.75 billion per year, for wildlife, fisheries and habitat programs. Hunters and anglers also contribute another $300 million a year to nonprofit organizations that extend conservation benefits even further. Results have brought many species—turkey, elk pronghorn, Canada goose, wood duck and others—and their habitats from vanishing to flourishing. These efforts enabled restoration of other species such as wolves. America's living landscape is a precious asset for all citizens who enjoy wildlife and wild places.

Country music star Luke Bryan is serving as honorary chairman of National Hunting and Fishing Day 2009.

NHF Day sponsors include Wonders of Wildlife, National Shooting Sports Foundation, Bass Pro Shops, Sportsman Channel, Realtree, GunBroker.com, Hunting Heritage Trust, Cabela's, Boone and Crockett Club, Smith & Wesson, Field & Stream/Outdoor Life, Woolrich, Yamaha and Pope and Young Club.

For more information, visit www.nhfday.org.

Related posts on The National Hunting and Fishing Day:

National Hunting and Fishing Day
Three Big Reasons
Hunting Facts and Figures
Hunter's Contributions Exceed 5 Billion Dollars
Hunter and Angler Fact

Regards,
Albert A Rasch
Member: Hunting Sportsmen of the United States HSUS (Let 'em sue me.)
The Hunt Continues...


The Rasch Outdoor Chronicles

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Stop Mountain Top Removal Now!

© 2009 Albert A Rasch and
The Rasch Outdoor Chronicles
$g&m f9bd 45kd q!?5.

OK one more thing political.

The EPA finally put a temporary halt to Mountain Top Removal.

Quick details:

2000 miles of streams destroyed/obliterated/gone from the face of this earth.
500 mountains gone.

Do you need to know more?

And something most people don't know is that the coal removed is a very high grade, low sulpher coal that is used for steel making...

IN CHINA!

That's right, it's shipped off to China for the smelters.

Public comment period ends the 25th.

Send your note to the EPA commending it for taking a stand, it only takes a couple of minutes.

Thanks,
Albert

How Many Lives Saved With $31M

© 2009 Albert A Rasch and
The Rasch Outdoor Chronicles
$g&m f9bd 45kd q!?5.
Your Tax Dollars at Work!

Everyone knows that I pretty much stay out of politics here at TROC unless it as to do with hunting, fishing, or something substantially similar.

But every once in a while I bump into something so un-freakin-believable that even I have to ask,

WTF?

"The Department of Homeland Security had announced it was spending $31 million to enhance and upgrade two remote border crossings -- just 12 miles apart -- on the border between Montana and the Canadian province of Saskatchewan. The spending was lauded by Montana's two senators, even though only an average of 22 cars a day traveled through these border posts."
Here are the story highlights:
  • DHS planned to spend $31 million to upgrade remote border crossings
  • The crossings are only 12 miles apart and get little to no traffic
  • Laredo, Texas, by comparison, gets 66,000 crossings a day
  • Laredo will not receive any of the $400 million in DHS border stimulus funds

I don't know but... 22 crossings versus 66,000... hmmmm...

You don't have to be a Senator to figure that one out.

Literally.

Regards,
Albert A Rasch
Member: Hunting Sportsmen of the United States HSUS (Let 'em sue me.)
The Hunt Continues...


The Rasch Outdoor Chronicles

Larry Heathington of Sheep Limited, Missing

.

UPDATE_UPDATE_UPDATE
Larry Found Alive!

I don't have any details yet, but a phone call has been received by Don Martin a close friend of Larry. It appears that Larry was assaulted, knocked out, and dumped somewhere in New Mexico.

As soon as I get the details I'll fill everyone in.


This is a bad bit of news

I picked this up via Jesse's Turkey Scratchings

I hope that everyone follows suit and copies and posts this on their blogs. I don't know Larry personally, but he is one of us, and the more of us that post, the more likely some information surfaces.


I'm posting this on behalf of Don Martin, Ariizona Wildlife Outfitters.

For those of you that haven't heard, my friend Larry Heathington, the owner of Sheep Limited, who lives in Williams has been missing since Friday, September 11th.

Larry was suppose to meet two clients on Friday in New Mexico to go on a private lands antelope hunt, and when his cousin last spoke to him he was two hours from Secorro.

He hasn't been heard from since Thursday afternoon. Larry was in his gray Ford F-350 Super Duty, towing his Jeep.

A missing person's report has been made with the Holbrook, AZ Police Department as someone close to Larry said they had seen his truck/jeep on Monday in Holbrook.

Please, we are very concerned about this situation and fear for Larry's safety. If you know Larry, you know it is not like him to not show up where and when he is suppose to.

If you know ANYTHING about where Larry is, or have seen his vehicles please contact the Holbrook PD 928-524-3991 or call me at 928-681-4867.

Thank you,
Don Martin Arizona Wildlife Outfitters

Larry is on right



Here is the picture of his jeep note the custom plates....SHPLTD ARIZONA PLATES

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Hunting Facts and Figures

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National Hunting and Fishing Day
Saturday, September 26, 2009

With National Hunting and Fishing Day quickly approaching, I am posting tips and ideas that you can use to help celebrate our sporting heritage. This the third one and I will continue with them until the 26th.
$g&m f9bd 45kd q!?5.
Share this information at any opportunity you have, wherever you can. Become conversant in the facts, and be willing to share them. Remember, it is all up to us to do what we can, because even the smallest thing you do, pays off in huge dividends!



The contributions, in the form excise taxes paid on sporting firearms, ammunition and archery equipment, benefit every state and have generated approximately $5.6 billion for wildlife conservation since 1939. The contribution for 2009 is a record -- nearly $336 million, according to the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, which recently announced the Wildlife Restoration apportionment.

An average hunter spends $1,638 every year on the sport.

Teenage girls are the fastest growing market in sport shooting.

According to research, 72 percent more women are hunting with firearms today than just five years ago. And 50 percent more women are now target shooting.

Americans hunt 228 million days per year.

More than 38 million Americans hunt and fish.

Hunters and anglers support more jobs nationwide than the number of people employed by Wal-Mart.

Through license sales and excise taxes on equipment, hunters and anglers pay for most fish and wildlife conservation programs.

Hunters and shooters have paid more than $5 billion in excise taxes since 1939.

More Americans hunt and shoot than play golf.

Firearms are involved in less than 1% of all accidental fatalities. More Americans are killed in accidents involving vending machines than guns.

Hunting gear sales are growing faster than all other sporting goods categories.

Americans annually buy 1.1 billion shotshells.

Non-resident hunting license, tag, stamp and permit sales have risen 41.2 percent since 1993.

Top selling sporting goods: 1.) exercise equipment, 2.) golf gear, 3.) hunting gear.

Sources: US Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS); 2001 National Survey of Fishing, Hunting, and Wildlife-Associated Recreation; National Shooting Sports Foundation.



I urge everyone to do something along the way and especially on the 26th to further our mutual love for the outdoors. It can be something as simple as taking someone who has never fished out on a shoreline, lake, or pond, to perhaps giving a talk to school children on the conservation and preservation work that outdoor sportsmen do for the benefit of all. Do something to bring another ally into our ranks.

Related posts on The National Hunting and Fishing Day:

National Hunting and Fishing Day
Three Big Reasons
Hunting Facts and Figures
Hunter's Contributions Exceed 5 Billion Dollars


Best Regards,
Albert A Rasch
Member: Hunting Sportsmen of the United States HSUS (Let 'em sue me.)
The Hunt Continues...


The Rasch Outdoor Chronicles

The Weekly Rut Report with Larry Weishuhn 9/16

WEEKLY RUT REPORT



by Larry Weishuhn, "Mr. Whitetail"

Albert,

Several whitetail seasons have now started, primarily archery seasons. But in a few places gun season too is underway. In route to Saskatachewan via Maine and New Hampshire the latter part of this past week, as well as several points in between thanks to airport stops, I ran into a whole lot of hunters. Thank goodness it’s once again that time of the year.

While on the Hartland Ranch near Briarcrest, Saskatchewan this morning (15th) I had the chance to watch two bucks being taken by bowhunters, one was a non-typical and the other a basic typical with a couple of non-typical points. While I have not yet today had a chance to score them, there is no doubt in my mind both will gross over 200. One of the bucks looked like he had stripped his velvet two or three days ago, the other, the non-typical, still had velvet hanging from his massive antlers. As this was being written at noon on the 15th we had also just gotten a call from the taxidermist in Moosejaw that an archer had brought in a buck that he suspected would gross over 225 and net not a whole lot less. That buck too, according to him had just stripped his velvet.

A quick call to some friends in Tennessee, just outside of Nashville and Doug Henderson reported to me he saw several bucks late yesterday afternoon on his farm, “Most of them were clean, but one of the younger bucks still had velvet.” He continued, “I’ve seen some rubs, but mostly rubs to help clean the velvet off of their horns. I also saw a couple of scrapes that had been visited, but I would not call them active yet by any stretch of the imagination.”

While in Maine I visited early the morning of the 14th with Mike French who lives in north central Maine, “The bucks I saw this week were still in velvet, but by the looks of their antlers the velvet should start coming off any day now, most likely this coming week.” Eric Booker of southern New Hampshire essentially had the same thing to say about what few bucks he’d seen the afternoon before.

Dropping down to Georgia (slightly southeast of Atlanta) I talked, at the airport on the 13th, to several hunters who had just left their home state headed to Colorado to hunt elk. “Bucks in our area were just starting to shed their velvet when we left home. We’ve seen a few rubs, where they were rubbing the velvet, but there was no scaping activity.” One of the hunters said, “I’ve got some scrapes I’ve been watching. I’ve seen a couple of big tracks in them, but there had been no scraping activity thus far. But while I’m gone I suspect the bucks will start doing some scraping.”

While on the plane to Regina on the 14th I visited at length with Rob Highlander of Glen Allen, Virginia. “Some of the bucks in our area were just coming out of velvet when we left home. Saw several bucks in a crop field just out of Richmond the afternoon before we left home. Seven out of the eight bucks I saw were out of velvet.”

An email from Trey Moore with the Los Cazadores Deer Contest stated, “We’ve finally gotten a little bit of rain. That’s the good news. Bad news is in visiting with South Texas area ranches we’ve got a horrible fawn crop throughout much of the southern half of the state. That’s going to hurt our bucks in years to come. We’ll be missing that cohort for the next several years. As far as antler development is concerned, some parts of South Texas should have some really good antlered bucks. In other areas according to the landowners I’ve been visiting with throughout the Brush Country antler development is likely going to be off this year when compared to last year. But even so there where be some really good bucks taken once again in South Texas and northern Mexico.” He continued, “Probably about 75 of the bucks we’re hearing about have stripped the velvet. No reports yet of active scrapes.”

I did talk to a couple of hunters at noon on the 15th (in Canada hunting waterfowl) from Minnesota and Wisconsin. “Most of the bucks were stripped when we left home on the 13th. And by the time we get back home in a week, we should start seeing some scrape. Even though they have stripped the bucks we were seeing were still in bachelor herds of 2 to as many as 11 bucks. (This same thing was echoed by everyone I spoke with about bucks.)"

Stan Christiansen in Kansas and Denver McCormick in Oklahoma said essentially the same thing that bucks were still together in bachelor herds and what bucks they’ve see have been coming into food plots and feeding areas…”Bucks are pretty predictable right now as to where they’ll be and when they’ll be there.”

With each passing day now testosterone levels will continue to rise in whitetail bucks. Bucks that may well be “buddied” right now will in the next weeks hate each other. They are still fairly predictable in their movements, which can certainly play to an advantage for bowhunters where seasons or open or will soon open. THE best time to take a mature buck you know about is the first legal opportunity and to many hunters that means archery season.

I headed back outside to do some more scouting and hopefully can visit with a few more Canadian hunters…

Good hunting!
Larry

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Sport Hunting, the American Pastime

© 2009 Albert A Rasch and
The Rasch Outdoor Chronicles
.
Toe to Toe with Anti-Hunters,
Let's Get the Facts Straight
$g&m f9bd 45kd q!?5.
Delphina, aka "Dell the Sissy-Boy," a rude, obnoxious, and misinformed anti-hunting activist, decided to grace us with her presence at the OBS. Her first appearance didn't quite go her way, but through the gentle and persuasive ministrations of the members of the OBS we really straightened her out.

I challenged Delphina to visit here at the TROC, but she talked about peeing on Picasso, which I find to be rather weird, but to each his or her own I guess.

I am also going to ignore the fact that her response was completely and totally plagiarized from the "In Defense of Animals" website, the home of lots of animal rights extremists. But plagiarism is plagiarism and that's very naughty!

Her post on "Facts" follows:

Looks like none of you dare to address the “sport killing” called varmint hunting. So let me educate you with facts on what you do:

Hunting, the stalking and killing of animals, has been an American tradition most likely since the Ice Age when plant food became scarce.

If primate studies are indicative, then even pre-Homo Sapient hunted for flesh. And uhm, America didn't exist during the Ice Age... Just saying.

Today it exists as a “sport”; even when the animals’ flesh is eaten, there is no excuse or justification for stalking and killing an animal in his or her habitat.

That is an opinion on your part, not a fact.

Nevertheless, people not only engage in hunting but strongly defend it as their right to do so.

The same way we defend your right to say and do what you want. Unlike you...

With an arsenal of rifles, shotguns, muzzleloaders, handguns, bows and arrows, hunters kill more than 200 million animals yearly – crippling, orphaning, and harassing millions more. The annual death toll in the U.S. includes 42 million mourning doves, 30 million squirrels, 28 million quail, 25 million rabbits, 20 million pheasants, 14 million ducks, 6 million deer, and thousands of geese, bears, moose, elk, antelope, swans, cougars, turkeys, wolves, foxes, coyotes, bobcats, boars, and other woodland creatures. (Compiled by The Fund for Animals with data from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and state wildlife agencies.)


I found the same data... except they never mention anything about crippling, orphaning, and harassing. So I already see a pattern of misinformation. Anyway, at the rate you imply we are going, there shouldn't be anything left pretty soon... But wait, aren't the numbers of animals increasing every year?

Less than seven percent of the U.S. population hunts. Hunting is permitted on 60 percent of U.S. wildlife refuges and in many national forests and state parks. On federal land alone (more than half a billion acres), more than 200 million animals are killed every year.

Well, you're forgetting that there is even more private land that is hunted, so that 200 million number is actually substantially reduced. More misinformation on your part.

Hunting by humans operates perversely. The kill ratio at a couple hundred feet with a semi-automatic weapon and scope is virtually 100 percent.

At 70 yards I should hope so!

The animal, no matter how well-adapted to escape natural predation, has virtually no way to escape death once he/she is in the cross hairs of a scope mounted on a rifle. Nature’s adaptive structures and behaviors that have evolved during millions of years simply count for naught when a human is the hunter.

By your argument we must be very efficient in our killing, which explains why so many hunters go home empty handed.

Most deer, for example, would not perceive anything that is within the effective range of a big game rifle (up to 400 yards) as a predator or a source of danger. A wolf at that distance, even though detected, would be totally ignored. Even the much smaller range of bow-hunter (about 50-75 feet) is barely of concern to deer. Deer may start to keep an eye on a hunter at that distance, but the evasion instinct doesn’t kick in until it’s too late.

You don't get out in the woods much, do you. More misinformation. If what you say is true, hunters wouldn't spend the BILLIONS of dollars every year on camouflage, scent eliminators, blinds, and who knows what else to eliminate an animals ability to detect them.

The stress that hunting inflicts on animals–the noise, the fear, and the constant chase–severely restricts their ability to eat adequately and store the fat and energy they need to survive the winter. Hunting also disrupts migration and hibernation, and the campfires, recreational vehicles, trash, and other hunting side effects endanger both wildlife and the environment. For animals like wolves who mate for life and have close-knit family units, hunting can severely harm entire communities.

Some of that is true. There are always slobs and ruffians in every group including yours. We, as the true conservationists, try to keep our disruptions to a minimum. If you knew anything about hunting, you would also know that hunters try to minimize their disruptions, it makes for poor hunting when the animals leave. Wolves tend to vote with their feet and vacate an area. Curiously, through hunters tax dollars and support for wildlife restoration projects, wolf populations have increased sufficiently to allow a limited hunt for those that partake of such things.

Hunters and hunting organizations, including state and federally funded sponsors like Fish and Wildlife Services and departments of environmental conservation, promote supposed justifications as to why hunting is necessary. One of these justifications is that if certain animals were not hunted, they would slowly die of starvation and thus the lesser of the two evils is to humanely kill them. There are problems with this logic.

Nothing supposed about those management tools. And the only issues with the logic is your failure to understand that as conservationists, we believe that to "Conserve" nature's assets is the best use of them.

When hunters talk about shooting overpopulated animals, they are usually referring to white-tailed deer, representing only 3 percent of all the animals killed by hunters. Sport hunters shoot millions of mourning doves, squirrels, rabbits, and waterfowl, and thousands of predators, none of whom any wildlife biologist would claim are overpopulated or need to be hunted.

If Snow geese aren't managed by hunting they would definitely destroy their tundra homes. That's science, not opinion. Squirrels and rabbits go through boom and bust cycles, along with the predators that prey on them. Again science not opinion.

Even with deer, hunters do not search for starving animals. They either shoot animals at random, or they seek out the strongest and healthiest animals in order to bring home the biggest trophies or largest antlers. Hunters and wildlife agencies are not concerned about reducing deer herds, but rather with increasing the number of targets for hunters and the number of potential hunting license dollars. Thus, they use deer overpopulation as a smokescreen to justify their sport. The New Jersey Division of Fish, Game and Wildlife states that “the deer resource has been managed primarily for the purpose of sport hunting,” (New Jersey Division of Fish, Game and Wildlife, An Assessment of Deer Hunting in New Jersey, 1990).

Again what is your objection to this? Hunter's pay for conservation. Take out the hunters, and no one will fork over the billions of dollars needed to maintain the wild areas.

Hunters also shoot nonnative species such as ring-necked pheasants who are hand-fed and raised in pens and then released into the wild just before hunting season. Even if the pheasants – native to China – survive the hunters’ onslaught, they are certain to die of exposure or starvation in the nonnative environment. While hunters claim they save overpopulated animals from starvation, they intentionally breed some species and let them starve to death.

I've noticed that nature does the same thing too. Imagine that.

Hunters and hunting organizations also promote the idea that hunting is necessary for “wildlife management” and “conservation.” “Wildlife management” and “conservation” are euphemisms used to describe programs that ensure that there are always enough animals for hunters to hunt. Because they make their money primarily from the sale of hunting licenses, the major function of wildlife agencies is not to protect individual animals or biological diversity, but to propagate “game” species for hunters to shoot.

Obviously the market demands that hunters be catered to. You're not willing to pay for all the other conservation programs that are supported by hunters for your benefit. Habitat restoration, Wood Duck nesting boxes, reforestation projects, shoreline clean-up activities, and the myriad of other things that Sportsmen pay for.

State agencies build roads through our wild lands to facilitate hunter access, they pour millions of tax dollars into law enforcement of hunting regulations and hunter education, and into manipulating habitat by burning and clear-cutting forests to increase the food supply for “game” species such as deer.

We pay for it, so we earned it. The biggest chunk of change being spent though is on regular law enforcement, and battling drug traffickers, to say nothing of the Homeland Defense requirements. Yeah Delphina, we even pay to keep your rear end safe from the bad guys while you skip through the forest trails that we pay to maintain.

More food means a larger herd and more animals available as targets. Hunting programs also cause wildlife overpopulation by stimulating breeding by conducting “buck only” hunts, which can leave as many as six does per buck; pen-raising quail, grouse, and pheasants for use as hunters’ targets; transporting raccoons, antelopes, martens, wild turkeys, and other animals from one state to another to bolster populations for hunters; and exterminating predators like wolves and mountain lions in order to throw prey populations off balance, thereby “justifying” the killing of both “dangerous” and “surplus” animals.


Unless you can show me the data and proof for these allegations, then I all I see is more unfounded and spurious lies and misinformation.

Hunters claim that they pay for “conservation” by buying hunting licenses, duck stamps, etc. But the relatively small amount each hunter pays does not cover the cost of hunting programs or game warden salaries. The public lands many hunters use are supported by taxpayers. U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service programs, which benefit hunters, get most of their funds from general tax revenues, not hunting fees.

False. Hunter's only use the land for a very limited period of time each year, in some cases for less than a week. The rest of the time is subsidized by hunters for everyone else. Hunters pay for the lions share ( Over 75%) of all conservation dollars collected and used. In 2007 alone hunters paid $723,712,682.00. That's 3/4 of a BILLION dollars in license fees alone. ( US Fish And Wildlife Service National Hunting License Report) That doesn't include the tax dollars paid into the Pittman-Robertson Act which was approximately another $300,000,000.

Just in Florida, sportsmen contribute to and support many things:

• Total annual spending by Florida sportsmen is more than twice the revenues from Miami-based Burger King ($4.8 billion vs. $2.05 billion).
• Sportsmen support more jobs in Florida than Disney World (85,000 jobs vs. 61,000).
• Annual spending by Florida anglers is three times greater than the value of the state’s orange crop ($4.8 billion vs. 1.2 billion).
• State and local taxes generated annually by hunting and fishing funds the equivalent of 11,643 teachers’ salaries.
Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission

Funds benefiting “non-game” species are scarce.

Really? So all the preceding money that sportsmen contribute for the privilege of hunting or fishing during limited times, all that money does nothing for other animals during the off season?

Hunters kill more animals than recorded tallies indicate. It is estimated that, for every animal a hunter kills and recovers, at least two wounded but unrecovered animals die slowly and painfully of blood loss, infection, or starvation. Those who don’t die often suffer from disabling injuries.

Estimated by who? You? More misinformation, unsubstantiated, and spurious data. If what you lie about was true, shed hunters would find a heck of a lot more antlers than they manage to!

Because of carelessness or the effects of alcohol, scores of horses, cows, dogs, cats, hikers, and others are wounded or killed each year by hunters. In 1988, 177 people were killed and 1,719 injured by hunters while walking through the woods or on their own property.

Actually, your misrepresentation should also state that approximately 78% of those injuries and fatalities were accidentally self inflicted. And the statistics show that hunting continues to become safer year by year through education and mentoring programs. The latest statistics show that there where 93 fatalities for that year. At the same time there were over 800 pool drownings, 9600 poisonings, and 12800 fatal falls. Seems like hunting is actually pretty safe. Maybe you should dedicate your time and energy into the "National Fall Prevention Campaign." Oh, but I forgot, you really don't care what happens to humans.

Hunters say that they are “ethical” and follow the concept of “fair chase.” What is fair about a chase in which the hunter uses a powerful weapon from ambush and the victim has no defense except luck?

What do you think I should do, use my bare hands? Or maybe just a knife. Nope can't do that in many places. Legislatures think that knife use might be too challenging. Go figure.

Furthermore, despite the hunting community’s repeated rhetoric of “hunting ethics,” many hunting groups have refused to end repugnant practices that go above and beyond the cruelty inherent in all sport hunting.

There you go with opinion again, I thought you said this was about facts. There is nothing inherently cruel about hunting.

There is clearly no “fair chase” in many of the activities sanctioned by the hunting community, such as: “canned hunts,” in which tame, exotic animals – from African lions to European boars – are unfair game for fee-paying hunters at private fenced-in shooting preserves; “contest kills,” in which shooters use live animals as targets while competing for money and prizes in front of a cheering crowd; “wing shooting,” in which hunters lure gentle mourning doves to sunflower fields and blast the birds into pieces for nothing more than target practice, leaving more than 20 percent of the birds they shoot crippled and un-retrieved; “baiting,” in which trophy hunters litter public lands with piles of rotten food so they can attract unwitting bears or deer and shoot the feeding animals at point-blank range; ‘hounding,” in which trophy hunters unleash packs of radio-collared dogs to chase and tree bears, cougars, raccoons, foxes, bobcats, lynx, and other animals in a high-tech search and destroy mission, and then follow the radio signal on a handheld receptor and shoot the trapped animal off the tree branch.


This paragraph will require a completely different post to disassemble, refute, and set to rights. Suffice it to say that the amount of innuendo, half-truths and misinformation is enough to choke a horse on.

Some hunters say hunting with a bow and arrow avoids using high tech equipment that might make it an unfair chase. Bow hunting is one of the cruelest forms of hunting because primitive archery equipment wounds more animals than it kills. Dozens of scientific studies indicate that bow hunting yields more than a 50 percent crippling rate. For every animal dragged from the woods, at least one animal is left wounded to suffer – either to bleed to death or to become infested with parasites and diseases
.

Unsubstantiated data that came from one admittedly limited survey in a very limited locale in Texas. Again this is the classic attack by anti-hunters. Use faulty data, opinions, half-truths, and outright lies to attack and misinform.

Hunting is not the cure but the cause of overpopulation and starvation. Luke Dommer, the founder of the Committee to Abolish Sport Hunting, had proposed to several state wildlife agencies that if they are serious about using hunting as a population control tool in areas where the sex ratio is already badly distorted, they should institute a doe season (taking no bucks but only does until the ratio is again stabilized at 50:50). All agencies have rejected that proposal thereby giving up any pretense of ecologically motivated sound wildlife management. They quite consciously and openly state that they are in business to provide the maximum number of live targets to hunters each year.

Yet many states have adopted doe only seasons, antlerless seasons, and doe before buck programs. And don't forget all the other things Dommer said had to be done simultaneously, which is why his ideas were rejected.

Powerful hunting lobbies in 35 states have persuaded lawmakers to enact “hunter harassment” laws that make it illegal for non-hunters to interfere in behalf of animals targeted by hunters, but these laws are being challenged on constitutional grounds.

So only 7% of the US population actively hunts, but they are so powerful, that they can enact Hunter Harassment legislation? Maybe, people like you, that pretend to care for animals, shouldn't poison hunting dogs, try to stop lawful activities, and maybe, just maybe you should stop lying about things you know nothing about.

Connecticut’s law was found to impact on freedom of speech without a compelling state interest and was struck down by a U.S. appeals court.

Where, oh where, do you get your information from!

Not only did the State Supreme Court of Connecticut spank you silly anti-hunters out of the courthouse, but so did the New Jersey Appeals Court, and the Illinois Appeals Court. For the love of Pete, don't make it this easy for me to discredit you and show how full of hate and lies you anti-hunters are.

I'm done with Delphina for the time being, I'll have to find the time to answer a few more statements of misinformation left. But don't worry, I'll get to it soon enough.

I'm going to repeat one of the things that really bother me about all of this. Why is it that I have to defend the privilege of hunting, from people that have no respect for the Declaration of Independence, The Constitution, and the Bill of Rights? I go out and risk my life to protect their right to speak freely, and instead of the truth, most of what they say are half-truths and outright lies. Examples they use are aberrations, or isolated incidents. Information is frequently outdated, inaccurate, or just plain fabricated. They want to legislate against hunters and thereby coerce me and every other sportsman by force of arms. In other words, they want hunting outlawed, thereby allowing the use of law enforcement personnel to coerce and compel obedience to their belief system.

Sometimes I wonder what Thomas Jefferson would make of all this.

I have to thank Delphina for the opportunity to set things straight. I found quite a bit of supporting evidence that, as you saw, discredited Delphina. It also gave me an opportunity to find new material to support the hunter's rightful position in this great Nation of ours. I also hope Dell appreciates everything my fellow soldiers, patriots, and countrymen have done for him over the decades and centuries so that he can say what he wants without fear of retribution.

Aren't you lucky to live in this great Nation.

Regards,
Albert A Rasch
Member: Hunting Sportsmen of the United States HSUS (Let 'em sue me.)
The Hunt Continues...


The Rasch Outdoor Chronicles