What Fresh Hell Is This?

What do you call a war waged on unarmed opponents?  Considering the rate and frequency of shooting I’m hearing out there now, there’s a massacre going on. If the victims being slain were human, it would be called mass murder. A pre-dawn ambush. All-out insanity. Evil incarnate.

But to the hunters on opening day annihilating ducks and geese, it’s tradition; harvesting nature; business as usual.

Text and Wildlife Photography ©Jim Robertson

Text and Wildlife Photography ©Jim Robertson

Someone must have signaled “charge” to an entire platoon waiting to attack at dawn, and a mindless barrage of semi-automatic shotgun fire shattered the morning air. Now it’s 7:30 a.m. and only the random explosions break the stillness. The blitzkrieg has been going on steadily for over forty-five minutes—since before first light (sunrise today is officially at 7:35, according to the NOAA weather radio).

I wasn’t sure if the “enemy,” no, “opponent,” no, victims were the elk herd who occasionally visit the neighbor’s hayfield, the stray black-tail deer who keep themselves mostly out of sight around here for fear of poachers, or the ducks and geese who are starting to gather on their customary wintering grounds. Judging by the constant rapid gun fire, the victims must be the “waterfowl” whose “season” started today.

What fresh hell is this? Armageddon for avian kind? Or just another opening day for sport hunters?

Man killed by father in hunting accident in eastern Oregon


MEACHAM — Umatilla County Sheriff’s officials say a man has died after his father apparently shot him while the two were deer hunting.

The East Oregonian reported 47-year-old David Joseph Branze of Gresham was hunting with his father, Louis Neil Branze, and at least two others Wednesday when one of them called to report an accidental shooting.

Deputies say they responded and learned that 76-year-old Louis Branze of Seaside had fired a shot at a deer and apparently struck and killed David Branze. No other members of the hunting party witnessed the incident.

Search and rescue teams found the body, which was in a steep, rugged area. Sheriff Terry Rowan says the two had hunted in the area for about 40 years.

Deputies are investigating.


Oregon town seeks solutions to droves of fearless deer


Tue Sep 22, 2015 7:14pm EDT

PORTLAND, Ore. A town in southern Oregon will hold a public meeting to discuss how to deal with droves of fearless deer that wander the streets, occasionally acting aggressively toward residents, state wildlife officials said on Tuesday.

The “Deer Summit 2015” will be chaired on Wednesday by Ashland Mayor John Stromberg as part of efforts to address deer that have stalked people, pawed at them with their hooves and even stomped on small dogs.

“The deer have no fear of humans,” said Mark Vargas, District Wildlife Biologist for the382304_10150410245381489_1896442457_n Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife.

The confident deer are a product of a long tradition in the town of 21,000 people of feeding and befriending them, Vargas said.

For the last two or three decades, the black tailed deer have been known to roam into yards and stroll the downtown area of Ashland, which lies in the heavily forested foothills of the Siskiyou and Cascade Mountains.

“Deer just live there,” Vargas said. “They live amongst all the people and when that happens there’s going to be conflict.”

Stromberg said on the city’s website that he wants to hear from community members with ideas about what to do.

The mayor could not be reached for comment on Tuesday, but city officials have urged residents not to feed the deer, and to put up deer fencing or deer resistant plants.

In a statement, the officials said a recent attack on a homeowner by a deer protecting its fawn was a reminder that locals share their community with all manner of wildlife.

“No matter how cute and seemingly domesticated, these are wild creatures.  Their behaviors are unpredictable,” they said on the city’s website.

Vargas said there is no easy solution. Giving the does birth control would be costly and ineffective, he said, and one would have to kill between 40 and 50 deer a year to have an impact that way. Trapping and moving them would just transfer the problem to another community, as the deer have become acclimated to city life, he said.

Vargas encourages people to stop feeding the deer and to yell or make loud noises if they enter their yard.

“In reality we encourage folks, look don’t feed the deer,” he said. “They don’t need food. They don’t need water. If you can, don’t even be friends with them.”

Two Timely Retorts to Hunter Fallacies

Excerpt From: https://exposingthebiggame.wordpress.com/2013/05/02/top-10-retorts-to-hunters-fallacies/

5) If we don’t kill deer they’ll become a traffic hazard.
Two words: Slow the fuck Down. (Sorry, that was four words.)
More animals are hit by cars during hunting season than any other time of year, usually when fleeing from bloodthirsty sportsmen with guns.

4) Hunting teaches respect for wildlife and an appreciation for nature.
Ha! That’s like a serial killer claiming his crimes foster a respect for women. Tracking down and shooting something does not equal respect. Try using a camera or binoculars if you really want to respect them.


Avid bowhunter/serial killer Robert Hansen

Deer with arrow lodged in face is saved

Deer with arrow lodged in face is saved
“The New Jersey Division of Fish and Wildlife successfully removed
most of the arrow from the deer’s face after tranquilizing her Tuesday
morning at a private property off Suffolk Way. The doe, whom activists
have named Grace, was in good health and released back into the wild
with her fawn, wildlife officials said.”


Bear hunting quota to be set at Fort Lauderdale meeting


4 arrested, 50+ guns seized in illegal-hunting probe



Four men were arrested and more than 50 guns seized in an ongoing investigation of illegal hunting, police said Wednesday.

Anonymous tips months ago began the investigation, focused on illegal hunting by people prohibited from possessing deadly weapons, said Cpl. John McDerby of the state Division of Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police.

More than 250 pounds of venison, seven crossbows and many deer racks and mounts also were seized in the investigation, which was focused in New Castle County, McDerby said.

Those arrested were identified as Michael E. Dewey, 53, and Christopher A. Griffin, 24, both of Wilmington, Jeffrey D. Callahan, 53, of Newark, and Gary L. Grose, 50, of Townsend.

All were charged with possession of a firearm by a prohibited person, an offense McDerby said could carry substantial prison time.

Because the investigation is continuing, McDerby said he could not release details of the case, including where and when the arrests were made.

Police did not disclose what past offenses led to all four being prohibited from possessing guns and ammunition.

But McDerby said that state law bans those with prior felony convictions, misdemeanor convictions associated with violent crimes, drug convictions, mental conditions as defined under the law or court-issued protection from abuse orders from having deadly weapons and ammunition.

“This prohibition means they cannot be in possession of hunting weapons, including bows or crossbows, shotguns, muzzleloaders or any deadly weapon or ammunition used for hunting,” he said.

Each of those arrested faces a variety of other charges.

Dewey also was charged with six counts of possessing illegally taken antlerless deer, six counts of possessing illegally taken antlered deer and one count of possessing unlawfully taken game. He was released on $10,500 unsecured bail.

Eight firearms and ammunition, one crossbow and about 50 pounds of venison were seized as evidence against Dewey, along with a variety of antlered deer mounts and racks, and one mounted duck, McDerby said.

Griffin was charged with six counts of possessing illegally taken antlerless deer, four counts of possessing illegally taken antlered deer, three counts of failure to tag antlered deer, two counts of possessing unlawfully taken game birds, two counts of failure to tag antlerless deer, two counts of posessing unlawfully taken game birds and unlawful use of a quality buck tag. He was released on $4,500 unsecured bail.

Thirty-six firearms and ammunition were seized as evidence against Griffin, McDerby said. Also seized were four crossbows and about 100 pounds of venison and duck meat, along with a variety of antlered deer mounts and racks, he said.

Callahan also was charged with eight counts of possessing illegally taken antlerless deer, four counts of possessing illegally taken antlered deer, marijuana possession and drug paraphernalia possession. He was released on $3,750 unsecured bail.

Four firearms and ammunition, a crossbow, about 100 pounds of venison, a variety of antlered deer mounts and racks, about 11.1 grams of marijuana and drug paraphernalia were seized as evidence against Callahan, McDerby said.

Grose was charged with two counts of possessing illegally taken antlerless deer, marijuana possession and drug paraphernalia possession. He was released on $5,500 unsecured bail.

Two firearms and ammunition, a crossbow and compound bow, about 15 pounds of venison, a variety of antlered deer mounts and racks, about 7.5 grams of marijuana and drug paraphernalia were seized as evidence against Grose, McDerby said.

Although McDerby declined to give details about the tips that started the investigation, he said, “we’re always happy to get tips like that.”

He said illegal hunting may be reported to Fish & Wildlife Natural Resources Police at (302) 739-4580 or to Operation Game Theft at (800) 292-3030

cartoon-trophy-hunt. bizzarodotcom

A Fallen Tradition is “Suffering”: MN Hunters’ Deer “Harvest” too High

Lawmakers to DNR: We want more deer up north

A panel of Minnesota lawmakers Wednesday told state wildlife officials they wanted to see more deer in the woods, especially up north.

A House committee hearing room served as the setting for what amounted to a stern talking-to by lawmakers echoing a refrain among many of the state’s half a million deer hunters: Deer populations in many areas have fallen unacceptably low, and the quality of a fall tradition is suffering.

“The deer hunters out there understand,” said Rep. Tom Hackbarth, R-Cedar, who chairs the Mining and Outdoor Recreation Policy Committee and is one of a number of deer hunters on the panel. “They go out there year after year. We know what’s going on, and we’re not seeing the deer. … What’s the problem? How did we get here? … I sat in the stand for five days and didn’t see a doe in the woods. We’ve got huge problems.”

Officials from the Department of Natural Resources got the message.

“Certainly, what we’ve heard is the harvest levels are unacceptable,” Steve Merchant, wildlife and populations manager for the DNR, told the committee.

When viewed over a century of data, the roughly 140,000 deer killed by hunters in the fall isn’t a small number. As recently as 1972, the deer population was so low that no hunting was allowed. But populations rebounded dramatically, and between 1990 and 2010, many years saw more than 200,000 deer taken.

However, the total harvest has fallen steadily since 2010. To protect the declining population, the DNR enacted strict regulations this fall, and the 2014 harvest was the lowest in two decades.

The state’s largest deer hunting advocacy group, the Minnesota Deer Hunters Association, wants to see the harvest rebound to 225,000 by 2019, Craig Engwall, the group’s executive director, told lawmakers. “With conservative seasons and good weather, we think we can achieve that,” he said.

That number prompts unease among DNR officials, who for several years sought 200,000 as a “sweet spot” for the total harvest but say severe winters have suppressed the population. While DNR Commissioner Tom Landwehr has publicly stated deer numbers should be allowed to increase in much of the state, the agency has blamed the back-to-back severe winters of 2012-2013 and 2013-2014 for populations plummeting in northern parts of the state.

Brooks Johnson, president of Minnesota Bowhunters Inc. and one of the DNR’s loudest critics, told lawmakers that DNR officials have “manipulated” data to justify a “hidden agenda” of shrinking the deer population beyond what was called for a decade ago, when concerns over an overabundance of deer prompted the state to loosen hunter rules to allow more animals to be shot. “Allowing the DNR to constantly alter numbers destroys all credibility moving forward,” Johnson said.

His allegations drew sharp skepticism from several lawmakers. Merchant and DNR Wildlife Section Chief Paul Telander said indeed the agency had wanted to swiftly reduce numbers in northern forests, where deer numbers had grown to levels where they were over-browsing on young trees and threatening to prevent the state from receiving accreditation for sustainable forest management.

It’s unclear whether legislation with wide support will emerge. Several lawmakers said they would support requiring the DNR to draft a statewide deer plan similar to its plans for ducks, pheasants, ruffed grouse and other game. Others suggested a wider “audit” of the way the DNR models deer populations, similar to a process Wisconsin underwent several years ago.

Other lawmakers said putting the DNR on the hot seat was all that was needed.

“I don’t think legislators know enough about wildlife to come up with legislation,” said Rep. Tony Cornish, R-Vernon Center. “I think the whole point was to put a fire under the DNR to tell them to get something done, and we did that.”

Wildlife Photography ©Jim Robertson

Wildlife Photography ©Jim Robertson