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Re: Deer

Trophy hunting does tend to reduce the healthy male population and leave
disproportionate numbers of does to reproduce.  (Also the fewer sets of
trophy antlers out there, the more someone will pay to take one home and put
it on their wall.)  Hunting for meat is more egalitarian as does are good
eating and licenses are issued for bucks or does specifically, not just for

As I've said before, we don't hunt or allow hunting on our property and that
is respected.  But I'm told that in more populated areas property lines tend
to be ignored.  Here the game and fish folks stay pretty well on top of it,
and generally are good at setting the hunt each year in relation to overall
population and habitat.  They also provide hunter safety courses, and much
of the hunting by novices is with guides.  I suspect that over population in
relation to available habitat is a major cause of disease among wildlife.

That said, a friend recently gave us a good supply of elk meat and we're
delighted to have it.  Game is much healthier to eat than fattened domestic
animals in terms of fat and cholesterol and hormones and antibiotics.  It
doesn't seem to me that a person should have to be starving in order to hunt
(if you're that poor, you can't afford the license and equipment anyway),
but I don't like the trophy hunting.  If you go out and kill an animal, you
ought to eat it, not just hang the head on the wall.

We have way more mule deer than white tailed deer around here.  The mulies
can do some damage in a yard, but not in comparison to white tails.  And
since there are wide open spaces for animals, they don't hang around yards
getting tame except in towns and we don't have many of those!  The big
problem you have in more populated areas is trying to squeeze too many
people and animals into the same space.  And I think you don't have the
right ingredients to manage harvests by hunters to keep a balance between
animals and habitat.  Out here there are always more people wanting hunting
licenses than there are licenses available.

Linda in Wyoming

> Well said, Marge, as always.  Skipping over my problem with hunting for
> "pleasure", my problem with hunting as a means of population control is
> the hunters do not cull the herd as a true predator would do.  Human
> take down the best and the strongest, not the weak and sick.  Perhaps if
> they had to run them down on foot it would be different.
> And maybe also if it were the controlled hunt you suggest.  Tough topic.
> think I like Jim's heeheehee's better!
> Libby

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