Caribou Gear

MT Governor inspecting the shoulder season landscape

RobG

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Dec 10, 2010
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Bozeman, MT
Man, I hate it when the batteries to my Jet helicopter go out.

I wonder if hunters will just wind up being be a cheap tool to haze elk off the property. We'll see how it all shakes out...
 

Nameless Range

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Western Montana
In the FWP Season meeting last week, one hunter mentioned that this specific landowner would not grant him access to hunt his land during this year's Shoulder Season.

Bullock is grasping for any success story he can right now. It's just too bad the success story he's grabbing at is a war on elk in Montana.
 

TRS_Montana

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Helena
Thanks for the article, Fin. Care to provide any thoughts? I am always anxious to hear more from people who have a lot more knowledge about the legislative process and inner workings of game management.

Here are my first thoughts:

I understand that Galt (and other landowner participants) should be able to voice their opinions and be heard like any other U.S. citizen, but it sure seems like they get special treatment. And maybe that's just the way of the world.

It does seem like Bullock might be getting input from someone with half a brain:

“Seriously, I think biology ought to determine what we open up, how we manage the resource, not politics. We shouldn’t be setting the parameters for harvest numbers by fiat. We need to let the experts do what they can do.”

To me, this statement indicates that there is some realization that the elk objectives have been determined primarily through politics and money, rather than science.

Obviously there is a higher agenda here than just taking care of the overabundance of elk on (in this case) the Galt land, but how can anyone take him seriously when he talks about being "weary of decades fighting the overpopulation of elk on his ground", then later remarks that he only had 17% of his land in block management.

I am sure that I am not seeing the entire picture, and I am willing to admit that I might think differently if I were a major land owner, but obviously the "overpopulation" of elk is not his number one concern.

Hopefully Bullock, and others who have more direct influence on the direction of this stuff, will weight the input they get from small landowners and non-landowner hunters fairly.
 

Straight Arrow

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Gallatin Gateway, MT
Man, I hate it when the batteries to my Jet helicopter go out.
That's funny!

If you can afford a Bell Jet Ranger, you can afford the fuel and flight time to haze the thousands of elk off your grass.

Thanks for the human interest story, Fin. It just goes to show that a high powered Dem can cozy up to a high powered Rep rancher.

But the real winner and highlight of this story is Cam Bullock.
 
Joined
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Helena, MT
Governor Bullock gets told what he wants to hear from FWP. Doesn't matter what kind of public comment was received or if negative comment was falsely labeled as positive. The shoulder seasons will expand next year, period. Maybe his hand was forced by SB42, maybe not. The last line of the article really rubbed me the wrong way and had me thinking there are motives here way beyond management of the elk herd:

After an impromptu lunch for Bullock, hosted by the Meagher County Sheriff’s Office, the governor and the rancher shook hands once more -- this time with considerably more warmth.

“Thanks for what you’re doing on this,” Galt said.

“Sure,” said the governor. “So that means I’ll have your endorsement?”

That produced a mutual belly laugh.

And this gem:

“This hunt has made them start acting like elk instead of barnyard animals,” Galt said. “They’ve split up and headed into the timber.”
No jackass, elk leave the timber for lower elevation when there is too much snow. As they have done so on the land you claim for thousands of years.
 
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swmt

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Dec 15, 2012
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I teach a class on wildlife biology and just last week we had the discussion about the unholy alliance between politics and science in wildlife management. Having this article on the front page of several papers this morning made the point more effectively than any thing I could have possibly said.
 

TRS_Montana

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Governor Bullock gets told what he wants to hear from FWP. The last line of the article really rubbed me the wrong way and had me thinking there are motives here way beyond management of the elk herd:

That's politics. There's always an agenda. You don't get elected unless you have an agenda, which I don't think is always a bad thing. It's unfortunate, however, that most agendas are prioritized by money, giving a disproportionate degree of importance to those with the most money, rather than the most widely-accepted ideology.
 

Oak

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Herding elk? Pshaw...I've heard that before. Probably just out looking for stray cattle. :)
 

HighWildFree

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Aug 18, 2013
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Missoula, MT
I just don't see how some one can complain about elk at all when they makes a quarter of a million dollars every year by simply leasing elk hunting rights during the general season.
 

Oak

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Believing the comments section of a newspaper is how we got Trump as the frontrunner for the GOP nomination.

Believing landowners who say that the elk don't show up until after the general season is how we got shoulder seasons.
 

double_a85

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Apr 30, 2014
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Roundup, MT

Ironically this website left out the cost to hunt on his ranch. I was in that area ice fishing last weekend and talked to a local that basically said the shoulder season is a bunch of b.s politics. Elk aren't stupid animals and quickly found the new havens during this shoulder season... which includes some of the Galt Ranch that he won't open up.
 

JMG

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Jul 1, 2011
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Location
Billings, MT
IMO - The only real way to handle this delicate situation is through a Constitutional Amendment (CA) or a Citizens Initiative (CI) that comes from the citizens of Montana. Someone or some "group" has to write a "law", get it on the ballot, and then have the citizens vote in favor of it.

For example. A CA or CI that states the wildlife of Montana can only be managed based on scientific facts and biology by biologist and/or wildlife managers with the State of Montana. Something to this affect (I think). Otherwise, you might as well accept that politics is going to be the way this topic is handled.
 
AMK Sportsman

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