Yeti

Missed Opportunities: Hunters and Environmentalists

Dougfirtree

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The idea that environmentalism is good for hunting is laughable. Most of the game we hunt thrives on early growth conditions that are generated by human impacts like logging. Since most environmentalists are also preservationists there is no reconciling with them.
On one side you have the environmental lobby which views humans as alien creatures on the land scape. On the other nature is viewed by what it can provide humans. IE nature is our garden to be used for our benifit. I side with the latter.
And FWIW the pebble mine thing is a catastrophe. It should have happened and now that it is dead a mine will be built in a third world country with very little respect for the environment. Because poor people don't give a shit about the luxury of environmentalism and the environment isn't bound by national borders. The Pebble thing was straight up NIMBY'ism.
I couldn't disagree with this more.

First off, while logging and ag may create better habitat for some species of game animals, they do just fine in less impacted environments and I think most hunters do care about species that they can't shoot as well, which sometimes thrive in habitats that are not so modified by humans. And for Pete's sake, this forum is full of people who save and dream all year to hunt in wilderness areas where there's no logging, etc. Guess we're all just stupid for chasing the last few pitiful elk holdouts that didn't get the memo saying they'll be happier where all the roads are...In addition, this is not some either/or situation. We can manage for a mix of wildernessy land, as well as land that is used for activities like logging.

To say that all "environmentalists" (whatever the hell that really means) are strict preservationists is ridiculous. Most people who care deeply about the natural world are aware that there's a place for both the preservationist and conservationist philosophies. They may disagree with you about what that mix looks like, but that's hardly an irreconcilable difference in most cases. There are plenty of industries telling us it is though, as they do not like limits... They'd like to create the same level of polarization that we see in national politics because it benefits them.

And I utterly reject this argument that someone else is going to pillage their environment if we don't do it first. That's a fast road to nowhere good and a philosophy devoid of any morals. We can make good choices for the choices we can make.
 

wllm

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The surgeon told me I was exposed to more lead swimming in the local lake than what was in my body. That was mind boggling for me.
The pellets are essentially sitting in your muscle/ under the skin in an area with very little blood flow, and the pH of your body is essentially neutral. No reason for a hunk of lead to have any effect. There probably isn't any blood flowing around it, and nothing causing it to leach out.

Now if you ate a bunch of pellets and they were sitting in the acid bath of your stomach probably a different story.
 

SwaggyD

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The pellets are essentially sitting in your muscle/ under the skin in an area with very little blood flow, and the pH of your body is essentially neutral. No reason for a hunk of lead to have any effect. There probably isn't any blood flowing around it, and nothing causing it to leach out.

Now if you ate a bunch of pellets and they were sitting in the acid bath of your stomach probably a different story.
Right - so that goes back to another one of my questions. How can we say waterfowl/upland birds are dying from eating the pellets instead of drinking the water that also has lead in it? Because either way, they are ingesting lead.
 

wllm

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Right - so that goes back to another one of my questions. How can we say waterfowl/upland birds are dying from eating the pellets instead of drinking the water that also has lead in it? Because either way, they are ingesting lead.
Probably the levels.

Eg (this isn't accurate just an example of what it could be)

Lead levels with pellets in your arm = .000000001
Lead levels drinking lake water = .000001
Lead levels of ducks = .01
Lead levels of other critters that drink lake water =.0001

So the lake water is way worse than pellets in your arm, but when lots of animals in the area were tested they didn't have as elevated levels, so there was something different about the ducks, and the difference was lead pellets in their gizzard.


I'm assuming something like that..
 

SwaggyD

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Probably the levels.

Eg (this isn't accurate just an example of what it could be)

Lead levels with pellets in your arm = .000000001
Lead levels drinking lake water = .000001
Lead levels of ducks = .01
Lead levels of other critters that drink lake water =.0001

So the lake water is way worse than pellets in your arm, but when lots of animals in the area were tested they didn't have elevated levels, so there was something different about the ducks, and the difference was lead pellets in their gizzard.


I'm assuming something like that..
Gotcha! Thanks for dumbing it down for me. Idiots like me need guys like you around!
 

nastynate

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Right - so that goes back to another one of my questions. How can we say waterfowl/upland birds are dying from eating the pellets instead of drinking the water that also has lead in it? Because either way, they are ingesting lead.
I think most wetlands/rivers/lakes do not have much lead in it. The inference that ducks are dying from pellets is that dead ducks have high lead level in blood + pellets in digestive system. There are likely lots of other animals in those wetlands that do not like eating itty bitty rocks that survive just fine and have low blood level in their system.

There are of course exceptions where there are lakes with toxic chemicals that kill waterfowl quite quickly, but I think those are kind of wastelands anyways. I remember reading an article about some mine tailing where some guys job was to scare waterfowl off all day because of how quickly they die in that lake, but that might have been sulfur. I can't recall.
 

wllm

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I think most wetlands/rivers/lakes do not have much lead in it. The inference that ducks are dying from pellets is that dead ducks have high lead level in blood + pellets in digestive system. There are likely lots of other animals in those wetlands that do not like eating itty bitty rocks that survive just fine and have low blood level in their system.

There are of course exceptions where there are lakes with toxic chemicals that kill waterfowl quite quickly, but I think those are kind of wastelands anyways. I remember reading an article about some mine tailing where some guys job was to scare waterfowl off all day because of how quickly they die in that lake, but that might have been sulfur. I can't recall.
 

nastynate

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The idea that environmentalism is good for hunting is laughable. Most of the game we hunt thrives on early growth conditions that are generated by human impacts like logging.

I disagree. When the environments changes, there are winners and losers. Much of what we hunt is just simply what's left (and what's left usually does well with humans). Or we have to go further and further to find places less disturbed by humans. For example, in the Midwest there are lots of whitetail deer hunting opportunities. Whitetail happen to do well in "edge" habitats (think where a forest edge meets an ag field). We've fragmented a lot of the landscape and provided food in the way of agriculture. Whitetail do tend to thrive in many human environments. However.... there are many more game species that do not thrive in the conditions generated by human impacts. For example, there used to be tons of elk, bison, moose around here. They were way more common than deer. Not anymore.
 

antlerradar

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I disagree. When the environments changes, there are winners and losers. Much of what we hunt is just simply what's left (and what's left usually does well with humans). Or we have to go further and further to find places less disturbed by humans. For example, in the Midwest there are lots of whitetail deer hunting opportunities. Whitetail happen to do well in "edge" habitats (think where a forest edge meets an ag field). We've fragmented a lot of the landscape and provided food in the way of agriculture. Whitetail do tend to thrive in many human environments. However.... there are many more game species that do not thrive in the conditions generated by human impacts. For example, there used to be tons of elk, bison, moose around here. They were way more common than deer. Not anymore.
I don't have much experience with bison and moose, but elk love agriculture as much as whitetails.
 

nastynate

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I don't have much experience with bison and moose, but elk love agriculture as much as whitetails.
Yes, they do. I wasn't trying to say they didn't. My point is that there are many examples of human impacts hurting wildlife, even though some human impacts help some wildlife.
 

Sytes

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The Center for Biological Diversity is a guru at camouflaging flatulent "science" to deceive the urban masses. They continue to dial in their practice. One example of slanted environmental extremism concealed within "Biological Diversity".
 

BWALKER77

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I disagree. When the environments changes, there are winners and losers. Much of what we hunt is just simply what's left (and what's left usually does well with humans). Or we have to go further and further to find places less disturbed by humans. For example, in the Midwest there are lots of whitetail deer hunting opportunities. Whitetail happen to do well in "edge" habitats (think where a forest edge meets an ag field). We've fragmented a lot of the landscape and provided food in the way of agriculture. Whitetail do tend to thrive in many human environments. However.... there are many more game species that do not thrive in the conditions generated by human impacts. For example, there used to be tons of elk, bison, moose around here. They were way more common than deer. Not anymore.
Elk and especially moose thrive in early stage growth conditions caused by clear cut logging. Bison could thrive many places if not for politics.
We can and did change the environment to produce more ungulates and this isn't disputable. It's also not disputable that most of the wilderness areas in MT are nearly devoid of game.
 

BWALKER77

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The Center for Biological Diversity is a guru at camouflaging flatulent "science" to deceive the urban masses. They continue to dial in their practice. One example of slanted environmental extremism concealed within "Biological Diversity".
Probably funded by Putin too.
 

BWALKER77

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I think most wetlands/rivers/lakes do not have much lead in it. The inference that ducks are dying from pellets is that dead ducks have high lead level in blood + pellets in digestive system. There are likely lots of other animals in those wetlands that do not like eating itty bitty rocks that survive just fine and have low blood level in their system.

There are of course exceptions where there are lakes with toxic chemicals that kill waterfowl quite quickly, but I think those are kind of wastelands anyways. I remember reading an article about some mine tailing where some guys job was to scare waterfowl off all day because of how quickly they die in that lake, but that might have been sulfur. I can't recall.
The science in regards to waterfowl ingesting lead shot are pretty mature. You can argue what effect this has, but not the ingestion. I wonder how many game birds are wounded annually do to steel shot usage vs. lead. Although steel shot has gotten much better since when I first used it 33 years ago. So much so I sold my 10 gauge off when I was still hunting waterfowl on a regular basis a decade back.
 

nastynate

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Elk and especially moose thrive in early stage growth conditions caused by clear cut logging. Bison could thrive many places if not for politics.
We can and did change the environment to produce more ungulates and this isn't disputable. It's also not disputable that most of the wilderness areas in MT are nearly devoid of game.

I agree with a couple points- early stage growth provides good forage for some ungulates and our tolerance (or lack thereof) of some big game limit their range. We did change the environment to produce more ungulates, but only if you're counting domestic ungulates (e.g. cattle).

There were about ~30-60 million bison, ~30 million pronghorn, ~10 million elk pre-European* settlement. There are less now. Whitetail probably increased (as I suggested in my first post).

I completely agree that MT wilderness (or all wilderness) is devoid of game. NOBODY should apply for wilderness tags. I'll buy them out and report back if there was any good hunting.

*my answer is depending on who "we" is... (I don't know that particular history of how indigenous people managed our landscape for game, but they definitely did some of that and very likely enhanced some populations).
 

WYelker

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I think there is only a few areas where true environmentalist and hunters share some common ground. Simply put hunters are for conservation. Conservation means a wise use of resources. Under a conservation mind set we see the opportunity for human benefit through continued use. However true environmentalist are all about preservation, preservation is against any and all use...

As a hunter I simply can not ignore the constant attack from the environmentalist. This goes beyond hunting... I can not side with them on ranching and ag related issues, can not side with them on predator envy, can not side with them on forest management, etc. I can not side with them on being anti 4x4 and atv, anti camping (there is an entire push by the groups to close down camping), etc.

Sorry but there is no way I can trust the other side as much as we might think we have in common we do not. ELF, ALF, PETA, HSUS, Sierra Club, Earth Justice etc. Sorry they are in fact an enemy to freedom, enemy to conservation, and enemy to our way of life on a level that virtually no others are...
 

hossblur

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I think there is only a few areas where true environmentalist and hunters share some common ground. Simply put hunters are for conservation. Conservation means a wise use of resources. Under a conservation mind set we see the opportunity for human benefit through continued use. However true environmentalist are all about preservation, preservation is against any and all use...

As a hunter I simply can not ignore the constant attack from the environmentalist. This goes beyond hunting... I can not side with them on ranching and ag related issues, can not side with them on predator envy, can not side with them on forest management, etc. I can not side with them on being anti 4x4 and atv, anti camping (there is an entire push by the groups to close down camping), etc.

Sorry but there is no way I can trust the other side as much as we might think we have in common we do not. ELF, ALF, PETA, HSUS, Sierra Club, Earth Justice etc. Sorry they are in fact an enemy to freedom, enemy to conservation, and enemy to our way of life on a level that virtually no others are...


I feel your frustration. I've been members of the usuals, DU, RMEF, etc. I heard about the new cool kids, BHA, and really got excited about the idea of hunters joining with bush hippies and fighting for the land we all use and love.


Even after BHA went "green New Deal", and I left them, I still followed their calls to action, followed the local chapters local issues.

I drive a lot, so I would spend the time on the phone with my legislators, especially Utah ones. No matter what subject, at the end of the conversation, I'd ask what other groups were advocating. Not once, did I hear about "other" groups advocating on land issues that primarily affected hunters. While on other issues, hunters "crossed lines".

More and more it seems, that there isn't a "common ground", as long as hunters benefit, and more and more, we are just the target, land issues being secondary.
 
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