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Location: Montana
Joined: 02/13/2005
Posts: 409
White Moose

it has been illegal to hunt bear over any bait,intentional or nonintentional here in Montana for over 50- years so your story dosnt wash,it would have been illegal for any hunter to kill a bear over that spill and for your info the F&G ended up shooting a bunch of those bears because they lost thier fear of humans and developed a taste for human food and then some were killed by passing trains,maybe you and your petitioners should have went out and cleaned up the mess,if you wanted to protect the bears...,now if there is a spill of grain ect in an area with bears they have to clean it up imediatly to prevent it from happening again.Yet another example of people not thinking about the long term effect on wildlife when they go on thier mini crusades.

expatriate's picture
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Location: Arizona
Joined: 10/26/2002
Posts: 3206
White Moose

You know, NONYA, you really ought to tone down the rage.

I know it's illegal to hunt over bait in Montana. That's precisely why I was concerned. We were told in 1985 was that residual grain left over from a rail car spill wasn't considered bait. I've been a hunter for 30 years; do you honestly think I didn't make an effort to check with F&G? The railroad cleaned up most of it, but there was a lot left over. I was out there -- I saw it. There were five bears on the scene at the time and they weren't too concerned about people. So it doesn't surprise me to hear they became a problem. Maybe you don't believe it, but that's the story. If you don't want to believe it, blame them F&G. Or blame the railroad for doing a sloppy job with cleanup. I didn't control the railroad, and I didn't control F&G. Do you think I wanted to be out collecting signatures if I didn't think it was a last resort?

As I said, I've hunted in five states over the past 30 years. And by the way, I'm originally from Montana. Don't go making assumptions about me, my motivations, or my intellect. And turn down the venom. I've been on this site for two and a half years. It's a friendly place with friendly discussion. We've got everyone from people who hunt for a living all the way to teens new to the sport. You're coming across as abusive and hostile for no other reason than someone voicing an opinion.

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Location: Montana
Joined: 02/13/2005
Posts: 409
White Moose

abusive and hostile?I take that accusation very personally,as a matter of fact i find your accusation abusive and hostile....LOLLOLOL jk...anyways im just stating the facts and my opinion since when is that abusive?You have way too thin a skin to have a diuscusion with me,i am a 6th generation Montanan and my family has always been involved in hunting and wildlife managment,I have faimily in the outfitting buisness and an uncle that just wrapped up a 8 year stay as a F&G commisioner.I stay informed of the facts and I base my opinions from fact not others opinions.My opinion about the bears is that the railroad should have been required to clean up the mess but since they didnt protecting those bears and allowing them to stay in the area and eat the spill was a bad idea,anyone who knows bears knows that allowing them to eat anything out of thier normal diet is going to cause problems.Allowing them to stay there ended up costing many of them thier lives(wich you probably already know if you were here but failed to mention in you post)and is a good example of what i have been talking about throughout this thread about misguided efforts of people trying to protect wildlife that ended up causing them more harm than good.I am very thankful that you brought up this topic it is a greaqt example!!Thanx NONYA

Location: Foleyet / Ottawa
Joined: 02/12/2005
Posts: 20
thoughts ...

You two are really going at it ... very interesting ...

Real Quick - No moral problems with baiting bears in an area with lots of bears ... so if there were lots of bears in the area of the spill, why not let hunters take them?

Second - Feeding bears food outside their normal diet does not cause problems ... I would only know this of course because my family has been running bear hunts for over 50 years ...

" don't agree with NONYA. I'm not so quick to automatically assume that someone who wants to preserve a resource is anti-hunting. "
- If you look back at the history of fishing and hunting regs, it has always been the most active sportsmen to bring in regulations ... Hunters and Anglers have the biggest stake in maintaining the herd, and so when someone throws out opinions that those trying to regulate hunting are anti-hunting, I have to agree with Expatriate ...

Joel

Location: Foleyet / Ottawa
Joined: 02/12/2005
Posts: 20
White Moose

From: Joel T.
Sent: Wednesday, March 23, 2005 11:50 PM
Subject: White Moose - Recent News & Pic's...

Mr. Bob Johnston,

I would like to begin by stating that I've been highly impressed by the efforts of your staff and yourself to help me establish a walleye hatchery on Nemegosenda lake. It is my sincere hope that your team will perform with the same excellence in regards to the white moose projects. Fortunately for your team, the first task requested by my group will require little "work" other than a pen stroke with your signature. The document should indicate that as the individual with express authority from the Minister of Natural Resources to protect the White Moose in WMU 30 and 31, you authorize removal of moose (which are more than 50% white)

from the hunting roster for 2005.

You had indicated that such an act would require consultation with a team of biologists and no protection could be afforded without determining these animals to be a new species. However, this requirement was not needed to afford protection to the kermode (spirit) bears of BC. Nor was it needed to protect white moose in such jurisdictions as Alaska or Labrador. The apparent view of those responsible for implementing hunting regulations in these areas (and others) is that such rare animals are more valuable to the public alive, as the best viewing and photography opportunities come to an abrupt halt if the animal perishes. I, and thousands of others, see no valid reason why the same type of legislation would not be enacted to help protect these extremely rare animals. In fact, Resolution 05-66 was passed by City of Timmins on March 7, 2005 to formally request of the Minister of Natural Resources to regulate the hunting of White Moose and afford them a protected status as a unique symbol of Northern Ontario.

I should note that by no means am I asking for a permanent removal of moose, which are more than 50% white, from the hunting roster in Ontario. When the Armstrong strain of white moose is no longer such a rarity, the hunt should be re-opened and regulated. There should be permits issued specifically for White Moose. I'm proposing that Ontario begin to finally make use of its resources to their fullest potential and place these animals under tempory protection, similar to putting money in a bank to allow it to grow.

My research has indicated that no such legislation has been enacted because the MNR would prefer these animals removed from the general population, seemingly out of fear that they will spread faulty genes to the general herd. Personally, I don't think that evolution has simply stopped because humans have become so technologically advanced. These genes may actually be a blessing. A white moose would seem to have a distinct advantage over a brown moose during the winter months. Furthermore, if it is true that wolves hunt with their noses in the summer, white moose would seem to suffer no great disadvantage to brown moose. More interestingly, this strain appears to have an odd variation involving grey guard hairs (even on the calves) which i've not seen on other strains of white moose. Is it really that far fetched that this strain may have the genetic ability (with a little luck) to produce moose which can molt from brown to white seasonally, similar to a snow shoe rabbit? Due to the uniqueness of these animals, it would seem that the best way to protect them is a live capture and relocation into a large, mixed composition, fenced in, park. Given the fact that trains, automobiles, natural hazards (like falling through the ice), and natural predators are factors beyond our control, a fence is seemingly a temporary necessity.

If it is the case that these animals are merely genetic defects as the MNR apparently believes to be the case, separation from the herd would seem to be the most sensible solution. However, given the immense value in terms of creation and diversification of employment opportunities that could be created by these animals (in an area largely devoid of industry), a live capture and relocation into a large fenced in, mixed habitat, park would seem to be the most logical solution. Interestingly, both of our opinions lead to the same conclusion regarding the best course of action.

So, the second request that I am making of you is that you have your staff start the paper work process (which I and others will gladly assist) to issue the permits for a live capture and relocation of the White Moose in WMU 30 and WMU 31. Ordinarily, I would believe that only the Minister of Natural Resources would be capable to authorize such a live capture, but given my reciept of a recent letter from the Honorable David Ramsay (the current Minister of Natural Resources), it would seem that this authority has been delegated to your person. I will be providing more details very shortly regarding the proposed transfer location for captured white moose.

Thank you for your time and I am eager to continue working with you for the betterment of Northern Ontario.

Sincerely yours,

Joel Theriault

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Joined: 12/29/2004
Posts: 12
White Moose
expatriate wrote:
.As hunters we are, by nature, conservationists -- or at least we should be.

I fully agree with you expatriate, but there is a difference between conservation and regulation, and the protection of an entire species. Outlawing the hunting of a white moose would not help preserve the species. They are a moose with a recessive trait. To say that they should not be hunted is to essentially say that you should not hunt a brown moose. I'm sure that that are many folks on this website who would not be pleased with that regulation. So all that I am saying is that white moose are moose, and should be hunted according to the hunting regulations for moose. Hope that wasn't too venomous.

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Location: Montana
Joined: 02/13/2005
Posts: 409
White Moose

thats right on the monkey pigman,and feeding bears human food is dangerous because once they get a taste for it the end up raiding garbage cans and campsites wich can lead to a bear on human attack and almost always gets the bear shot for being a nuisance bear,anyone who will disagree with that fact has no exsperience living in an area inhabited by black bears.

expatriate's picture
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Location: Arizona
Joined: 10/26/2002
Posts: 3206
White Moose

Now THAT I'll agree with. And I don't necessarily think white moose are a new species. Rare, yes. But for it to be a new species it ought to be a dominant trait that continues consistently across generations -- not a fluke that shows up occasionally.

I also don't think we as sportsmen ought to manage wildlife to develop new strains like someone might try to develop new breeds of dogs or cats. Wild animals ought to be wild, IMO. Managed, but wild. If nature decides to develop a new genetic trait, that trait ought to compete for Darwinian dominance as such things have done throughout history.

Sorry, Joel -- I think I understand your motive but I disagree with the goal.

Location: Foleyet / Ottawa
Joined: 02/12/2005
Posts: 20
thoughts ....

"But for it to be a new species it ought to be a dominant trait that continues consistently across generations -- not a fluke that shows up occasionally. "

- This strain, unlike other strains, has been consistently producing white offspring for over 40 years ... Since the first white cow was born from a brown cow, there has not been a sighting of a white calf with a brown cow ... i've seen lots of video of 3 generations of white moose hanging together (multiple groups), and i'd wager that the cow with the calf on the side of the highway is preganant with another white moose ...
When one looks at the difference between a black duck and a mallard (both considered separate species), the distinction based on species is muddled due to the fact that they can sucessfully interbreed and also because the black is visually just a dark mallard ... So i'm not so sure that this strain of white moose couldn't be classified as a species ...

Furthermore, i'm not trying to develop a new strain, and the situtation is not the same as creating dogs or cats .... these animals occurred naturally, and i'm looking to ensure we don't loose the strain due to its unique characteristics ...

" feeding bears human food is dangerous because once they get a taste for it the end up raiding garbage cans and campsites wich can lead to a bear on human attack and almost always gets the bear shot for being a nuisance bear,anyone who will disagree with that fact has no exsperience living in an area inhabited by black bears. "
- Once again, would have to disagree ... maybe the situation is different where you're at, but in N.Ontario, we experience none of these problems ... maybe you should qualify the statement by saying that if someone is baiting in very close proximity to housing then the bears may become a problem if natural food sources run low ... but otherwise, your statement is not applicable in my area of the world ... My experience has actually been that baiting can draw bears away from people...

In the early 20th century, the city of Timmins used to shoot the old horses (from horse logging) and bring them out of town limits 10 miles to draw the bears away from town. We use the same technique on our remote tourism lakes in that we ask our guests to put their food scraps / fish guts in designated bear baiting areas on the opposite side of the lake to draw the bears away from the camp (because they love to rip up my screens)...

Baiting for bears and deer has some beneficial effects like adding nutrients to the animals system that it would otherwise not recieve ... i'd like to think that i've helped out a lot of bears and deer make it through the winter from the bait piles in the fall ... bait piles are a concentrated food source, and that means the animals have a good chance at fattening up to survive the winter...

Pigman,
Your convienently forgetting just one important aspect of the issue regarding the number of brown moose and the number of white moose ... I think i've stated on multiple occassions that when the herd is healthy, the hunt should be opened, but still regulated.

What aspects of the letter to Bob Johnston do you guys find troubling?

Joel

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Location: Montana
Joined: 02/13/2005
Posts: 409
White Moose

I have come to the conclusion that your neck of the woods is actualy a parallel universe where the common sense rules of wildlife managment do not exist and therefore you are forced to rewrite them as you see fit....j/k I hope your plans work out for you up there but be sure they would not work down here!!

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