Looking like coyote hunting contests are done for in MA

mbVT

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I say good. I think hunting needs to mold itself, a bit, to societal pressures to continue. When I think about what I learned as a kid- "eat (use) what you shoot", these contests, unless done with an emphasis on taking the pelt and utilizing that, don't fit the bill. They aren't going anywhere, can still hunt them, no need for a contest.

If coyotes were threatening a population somewhere, they would need intensive management. Otherwise, manage them.

VT banned contests, but has yet to give them a season, which I think is also a reasonable step. We only make ourselves look bad when we vilify a critter like the coyote and draw a line in the sand on it.

Recommended reading- Thinking Like a Mountain by Aldo Leopold: http://www.uky.edu/OtherOrgs/AppalFor/Readings/leopold.pdf
 

NH Hunter

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I say good. I think hunting needs to mold itself, a bit, to societal pressures to continue. When I think about what I learned as a kid- "eat (use) what you shoot", these contests, unless done with an emphasis on taking the pelt and utilizing that, don't fit the bill. They aren't going anywhere, can still hunt them, no need for a contest.

If coyotes were threatening a population somewhere, they would need intensive management. Otherwise, manage them.

VT banned contests, but has yet to give them a season, which I think is also a reasonable step. We only make ourselves look bad when we vilify a critter like the coyote and draw a line in the sand on it.

Recommended reading- Thinking Like a Mountain by Aldo Leopold: http://www.uky.edu/OtherOrgs/AppalFor/Readings/leopold.pdf

Well said Matt. We have an obligation to represent each other as intelligent stewards of the land.
 

Meatseeker

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I'm on the fence with this one. Matt I think you make a good point. I think it is important for hunter to promote a positive image in this day in age. However, I get very very nervous when we open up wildlife management to the court of public opinion. There is no biological/natural resource management reason to ban coyote hunting contests. If you look at the folks who were in favor of banning the contest it was primarily animal rights activist. Any time a state agency presents a wildlife management issue in the context whether or not we should allow this activity to continue, the anti-hunting crowd will come out loud and clear in favor banning the activity. Look at the NJ bear hunt for example. As such, I view this as a major loss of political capital for hunters in MA. The anti's got their foot firmly in the door...what next? Big buck contests? bear hunting, archery hunting?

I'd prefer to leave wildlife management in the hands of the professionals and not the general public or politicians.
 

Gwlambo

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I agree this is a slippery slope. I agree with Matt's view but I believe NY has now banned fishing contests too ( i may be wrong but there were several articles about it). What about Big Buck Contests. The contests do not create more hunters, i don't think, but builds a camaraderie amongst the local groups, with bragging rights. how about our own P&P contests, which i love, while not endangering any of you from stealing the trophy! Not disagreeing with the different views just thinking about them all. Also, I am open to critique on the topic as I frequently struggle with exactly why I love being in the woods so much. I know it is not the killing for killing sake.
 

AMT1379

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The anti's were able to effectively use the poor social media skills of hunters to make it look like a dog slaughter. The whole thing played out on Facebook. The shop on the Cape where this went down seems to be a long time supporter of hunting and fishing. That said, a majority of the posts by the shop were photos of frozen coyotes in contorted poses laying on pavement. No mention of saving pelts, no photos of the hunters in the field. And then a lot of the hunter comments to the anti's posts on the page were the kind of response you'd expect from twelve year-olds (petty name calling and insults, or saying stuff like "kill them all"). I think we shot ourselves in the foot because at best anybody that doesn't hunt gets no context about the hunt from those photos and comments and at worst they get the confirmation that all the worst falsehoods that anti's use against hunting are true. I didn't attend the hearings, but the summaries I read basically said hunters were saying contests are good and we are performing important management work. But, the anti's were citing well-regarded studies that said hunting isn't an effect management tool to reduce populations of coyotes. We probably would have been better off saying contests celebrate hunting and we can save and sell the pelts making good use of the resource.

Banning contests does hurt the hunting community but doesn't address what may be a reasonable argument to have about the management of coyotes in the state. Anti-hunting zealots aside, if there are concerns from some of the non-hunters that coyotes are being shot and wasted, then F&W should have put a tag fee on them. It shows the resource has a recognized value, and it raises funds for F&W that can go the study and management of predators in general or habitat or whatever. We are trying to reduce deer numbers too and I still have to pay $5 for every doe permit even in areas where they never sell out. Leave the contests out of it.

Hopefully it's a situation the hunting community can learn from because I am sure it will be coming up again soon.
 

NH Hunter

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The anti's were able to effectively use the poor social media skills of hunters to make it look like a dog slaughter. The whole thing played out on Facebook. The shop on the Cape where this went down seems to be a long time supporter of hunting and fishing. That said, a majority of the posts by the shop were photos of frozen coyotes in contorted poses laying on pavement. No mention of saving pelts, no photos of the hunters in the field. And then a lot of the hunter comments to the anti's posts on the page were the kind of response you'd expect from twelve year-olds (petty name calling and insults, or saying stuff like "kill them all"). I think we shot ourselves in the foot because at best anybody that doesn't hunt gets no context about the hunt from those photos and comments and at worst they get the confirmation that all the worst falsehoods that anti's use against hunting are true. I didn't attend the hearings, but the summaries I read basically said hunters were saying contests are good and we are performing important management work. But, the anti's were citing well-regarded studies that said hunting isn't an effect management tool to reduce populations of coyotes. We probably would have been better off saying contests celebrate hunting and we can save and sell the pelts making good use of the resource.

Banning contests does hurt the hunting community but doesn't address what may be a reasonable argument to have about the management of coyotes in the state. Anti-hunting zealots aside, if there are concerns from some of the non-hunters that coyotes are being shot and wasted, then F&W should have put a tag fee on them. It shows the resource has a recognized value, and it raises funds for F&W that can go the study and management of predators in general or habitat or whatever. We are trying to reduce deer numbers too and I still have to pay $5 for every doe permit even in areas where they never sell out. Leave the contests out of it.

Hopefully it's a situation the hunting community can learn from because I am sure it will be coming up again soon.

I was in agreement with you right up until your last sentence. Unfortunately the problem with stupid people is , they aren't aware they're stupid. They open their mouth to make sure everyone KNOWS they are. Hunters need to learn how to intelligently educate people. I spent 45 minutes at a Conservation committee meeting in my town back in April. I was upset that our town attached themselves to a anti hunting bill without a public meeting or a vote. They also couldn't provide minutes of the discussion. I did my homework, made the calls I needed to, spoke to my selectmen. What I didn't do is get a bunch of people wound up on social media with half facts running their suck holes. I left the meeting feeling as though I had educated the board members, succeed in making sure our commission will NEVER vote their opinions when representing a township. There's a right way and a wrong way. Sadly the wrong way is the means used most of the time.
 

outdoorsman

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The anti's were able to effectively use the poor social media skills of hunters to make it look like a dog slaughter. The whole thing played out on Facebook. The shop on the Cape where this went down seems to be a long time supporter of hunting and fishing. That said, a majority of the posts by the shop were photos of frozen coyotes in contorted poses laying on pavement. No mention of saving pelts, no photos of the hunters in the field. And then a lot of the hunter comments to the anti's posts on the page were the kind of response you'd expect from twelve year-olds (petty name calling and insults, or saying stuff like "kill them all"). I think we shot ourselves in the foot because at best anybody that doesn't hunt gets no context about the hunt from those photos and comments and at worst they get the confirmation that all the worst falsehoods that anti's use against hunting are true. I didn't attend the hearings, but the summaries I read basically said hunters were saying contests are good and we are performing important management work. But, the anti's were citing well-regarded studies that said hunting isn't an effect management tool to reduce populations of coyotes. We probably would have been better off saying contests celebrate hunting and we can save and sell the pelts making good use of the resource.

Banning contests does hurt the hunting community but doesn't address what may be a reasonable argument to have about the management of coyotes in the state. Anti-hunting zealots aside, if there are concerns from some of the non-hunters that coyotes are being shot and wasted, then F&W should have put a tag fee on them. It shows the resource has a recognized value, and it raises funds for F&W that can go the study and management of predators in general or habitat or whatever. We are trying to reduce deer numbers too and I still have to pay $5 for every doe permit even in areas where they never sell out. Leave the contests out of it.

Hopefully it's a situation the hunting community can learn from because I am sure it will be coming up again soon.
There are a number of studies reporting the need for removing coyotes by hunting and trapping. Unfortunately the hunting trapping community on average doesn’t use their computer to educate themselves. Search engines easily pick up studies and from there more studies can be found.

What is starting out as “coyote hunting contest” is already being morphed into “Wildlife killing contest”. In my opinion the heart of the issue is Wanton Waste not contest.
 

JDK

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I understand wanton waste and actually agree with most of the regulations against this. I might have missed it but where did it say that most of the coyotes killed end up in the dump? If I did miss it I apologize. Si, what is next? Woodchuck hunting? Crow hunting?

“Hunters” openly opposed are a bigger enemy than the antis
 

outdoorsman

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I understand wanton waste and actually agree with most of the regulations against this. I might have missed it but where did it say that most of the coyotes killed end up in the dump? If I did miss it I apologize. Si, what is next? Woodchuck hunting? Crow hunting?

“Hunters” openly opposed are a bigger enemy than the antis
I can’t write to specifics on the Mass situation however the consensus among those against coyote contest and hunting coyotes widely claim animals taken are discarded without any type of use.
 
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trackah

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Speak Up Now

Bob Durand, the newest member of the Mass Fish and wildlife board, spoke at our bi-monthly club meeting last night. Bob was the lone opposition to passing the coyote contest and wanton waste bill currently before the board. As a result of his lone opposition the decision was made to open this subject up to public comment. If you have an opinion regarding these topics your time to comment is now as they will be meeting shortly.

Bob made some really good points regarding these subjects, I would suggest you read up on the issue and share your feelings. Realize that the board is being heavily influenced by peta type, well organized anti hunting groups. You can write the board at:

MassWildlife Field Headquarters
1 Rabbit Hill Road
Westborough, MA 01581

I usually keep to myself regarding these subjects write my letters without spreading the word of my opinions but we must keep in mind our way of life is under attack on many many fronts. we all bitched and moaned when Mass voters were hoodwinked into banning leg hold traps due to pictures on the tv of poor little poodles whining in a trap. next will be coyote contest, then deer pools, trout contest, etc, etc.

Speak now or you will be telling your grand kids hunting stories instead of being with them while they make their own.

sorry being so long winded. best of luck to everyone in the coming season
Trackah
 

AMT1379

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Bob Durand, the newest member of the Mass Fish and wildlife board, spoke at our bi-monthly club meeting last night. Bob was the lone opposition to passing the coyote contest and wanton waste bill currently before the board. As a result of his lone opposition the decision was made to open this subject up to public comment. If you have an opinion regarding these topics your time to comment is now as they will be meeting shortly.

Bob made some really good points regarding these subjects, I would suggest you read up on the issue and share your feelings. Realize that the board is being heavily influenced by peta type, well organized anti hunting groups. You can write the board at:

MassWildlife Field Headquarters
1 Rabbit Hill Road
Westborough, MA 01581

I usually keep to myself regarding these subjects write my letters without spreading the word of my opinions but we must keep in mind our way of life is under attack on many many fronts. we all bitched and moaned when Mass voters were hoodwinked into banning leg hold traps due to pictures on the tv of poor little poodles whining in a trap. next will be coyote contest, then deer pools, trout contest, etc, etc.

Speak now or you will be telling your grand kids hunting stories instead of being with them while they make their own.

sorry being so long winded. best of luck to everyone in the coming season
Trackah
Thanks for the update!
 


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