[Tweeters] hunting of Emperor Geese
stevechampton at gmail.com
Mon Dec 6 22:28:47 PST 2021
Just a quick note on hunter Facebook groups-- last year in California a few
birders started looking at these groups and discovered a Bean Goose and a
Baikal Teal shot by hunters and posted online the same week (!) , which
illustrated how many birds are out there that birders might be missing.
In that instance, I think both birds were shot legally and the posts were
to assist in identification, as they thought they might be a weird hybrid.
Other hunters knew better and were quite excited about them.
On Mon, Dec 6, 2021 at 10:09 PM Kevin Lucas <vikingcove at gmail.com> wrote:
> Gary, and other Tweeters whose posts on this thread I've read so far,
> Thank you all for a thoughtful discussion. Your different perspectives,
> and genuine concerns expressed are inspirational to me. That you've spoken
> out is brave.
> I've met many hunters who know me as a bird watcher, some of whom have
> invited me bird watch on their private and hunt club properties, who are
> quite partial to any duck or goose that's not one of the ordinary ones.
> I've been shown many pictures of hybrids and back crosses and leucistic and
> melanistic ducks, and told many stories about them. To "get" an unusual
> duck is highly prized and sought after. Some very skilled shooters have
> told me how they've not shot in order to preserve their bag limit chance at
> a hoped-for rarity. For hunters, seeking a rarity is a powerful force. I'm
> sure that some hunters shoot rarities, even when prohibited or past their
> bag limit, in order to "get" a rarity. I'm a hunter, though I've not hunted
> in many years. I've been told stories by respected guides of them poaching
> -- yes the guides themselves poaching. I've been shot while hunting --
> accidentally by a U.S. Army Colonel. I'm also a bird watcher, and I briefly
> enjoyed the competitive aspects of bird watching -- until I saw illegal,
> dishonest, and unethical behaviour here in the local scene, heard more
> stories of such,,had my rare bird finds poached by the perpetrators, and read
> their dishonest allegations about me; respected competitive bird listers
> trespass and use playback and spotlighting and falsify checklists despite
> laws and tribal sovereignty and bird watchers' concerns about rare and
> sensitive species. As to Gary's, " I would say that a closed goose season
> is a closed goose season", I'd agree. I also agree with Gary's, "a lawyer
> or a reluctant WDFW officer might argue differently", adding (to lawyer &
> reluctant WDFW officer) the possibly inferred red-handed hunter, naive
> bird watcher, and competitive lister who is protective of the tally of
> birds they "got" -- to the list of those who would argue "differently." Please
> don't fall into the simple trap of lumping all hunters with those who
> purposefully hunt illegally, but please don't fall into the
> corresponding trap of letting those who purposefully and repeatedly violate
> laws and codes of ethics get away with it -- by falling for their excuses
> or lumping them with those well intentioned and always ethical birders that
> make up the vast majority of bird watchers.
> It's a touch late for a Thanksgiving note I suppose, but I'm *constantly*
> thankful that I had phenomenally good role models and training for my
> hunting, so that I became a safe, ethical, and responsible hunter --
> despite seeing poaching and dangerous behavior in the field that yielded
> the perpetrators impressive takes. I'm also thankful that as I became
> entranced with bird watching a decade ago I became able to distinguish
> which role models to steer clear of and which to emulate, celebrate, and
> learn from.
> Please report unethical and dangerous and illegal behavior when you
> observe it, to stop the behavior, and to dissuade others from choosing to
> adopt it, whether it's by a hunter, bird watcher or lister, motor vehicle
> driver, or anyone else. Celebrate the gems. Call out the bad apples, so
> they might be stopped from spoiling the barrels.
> Perhaps the hunter was shooting what (s)he thought was a rare plumaged
> bird, and thought it was in season. Perhaps the hunter knew better on both
> Please try to help discourage the practice, regardless of any argument,
> genuine or disingenuous, by the hunter or the hunter's supporters.
> If the hunter's identity has still not been determined, a search of
> Facebook and other social meddling sites could nail it. Perpetrators often
> brag post about what they "got".
> Good Birding,
> Kevin Lucas
> Yakima County, Washington
> *Qui tacet consentire videtur*
> On Mon, Dec 6, 2021 at 8:22 PM Gary Bletsch <garybletsch at yahoo.com> wrote:
>> Dear Tweeters,
>> Thanks to all of the Tweeters out there who have written to me personally
>> about this event, as well as to those who have been continuing the
>> discussion amongst the group.
>> On the *Birds of the World *website, under "Conservation and Management"
>> of Emperor Geese, there is this information (link pasted below the quoted
>> Measures Proposed And Taken
>> Guidelines for management of Emperor Geese are presented in the Pacific
>> Flyway management plan for Emperor Geese (Pacific Flyway Council 2002b
>> Measures recommended to manage harvest include: (1) Closure of all hunting
>> when numbers fall below a 3-yr running average of 60,000, based on the
>> spring survey. Hunting allowed only after population levels rise above
>> 80,000; (2) Enforce harvest restrictions; and (3) Continue support of the
>> Yukon Delta Goose Management Plan. (The plan is an agreement for
>> voluntarily reduction in subsistence harvest of several species including
>> Emperor Geese).
>> Following amendment of the Migratory Bird Treaty, a system of
>> co-management exists in which federal, state, and the collective indigenous
>> community each have a vote for how harvest regulations are established.
>> Under this current system, Emperor Geese remain one of the few species with
>> no allowable harvest.
>> The Emperor Goose management plan also recommends management and research
>> activities. The highest priorities include: (1) Continue spring aerial
>> surveys; (2) Continue nesting habitat aerial and ground surveys on the Y-K
>> Delta; (3) Continue autumn production estimates as derived from air photo
>> analysis of age composition from flocks along the north side of the Alaska
>> Peninsula; (4) (4) Initiate study on winter ecology; and (5) Continue and
>> expand cooperative educational and volunteer programs.
>> Conservation and Management - Emperor Goose - Anser canagicus - Birds of
>> the World
>> The article states that there is "no allowable harvest" of Emperor Geese
>> at the moment. One might conclude that this species can't be hunted in the
>> However, the Alaska Department of Fish and Game website tells a different
>> story. Here is a link.
>> 2021-2022 Migratory Game Bird Hunting Regulations (alaska.gov)
>> The website states that there is hunting of Emperor Geese in Alaska.
>> Residents can apply for a special Emperor Goose hunt; non-residents must
>> win such permission through a lottery. The bag limit is ONE (1) Emperor
>> Goose per season.
>> Of course, this has no bearing on the taking of Emperor Geese in
>> Washington. I wish that our state would have language in the hunting
>> regulations, such that the only migratory birds that can be hunted be the
>> ones specifically listed in the regulations. That way, if a wayward species
>> makes its way here, the bird does not get killed. I would guess that most
>> responsible hunters would find that reasonable. I don't see why a hunter in
>> the year 2021 would find it necessary or desirable to shoot, for example, a
>> Baikal Teal or an Tundra Bean Goose, when there are hundreds of thousands
>> of Mallard, Wigeon, and Snow Geese for the taking.
>> In the present case, goose season was closed. I would say that a closed
>> goose season is a closed goose season, meaning that it would be unlawful to
>> shoot any species of goose during this time; a lawyer or a reluctant WDFW
>> officer might argue differently.
>> Yours truly,
>> Gary Bletsch
>> Tweeters mailing list
>> Tweeters at u.washington.edu
> Tweeters mailing list
> Tweeters at u.washington.edu
Port Townsend (Qatay), WA
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