“You that never done nothin’ but build to destroy/You play with my world like it’s your little toy. … Even Jesus would never forgive what you do. ~ “Masters of War,” Bob Dylan
Sept. 14 is day 12 of the 35-day bear hunt. Thousands of bears, vulnerable from baiting since April, and having been run by dogs since July 1, have been wounded or killed with guns or crossbows or dogs. Most of them were spring cubs, yearlings or mothers. The last four months before denning, when they need to feed every day, bears are run relentlessly. As a consequence, there is the real risk of bears and spring cubs starving in winter dens.
Hunters, having bagged their bear, will turn attention to add the smorgasbord of killing opportunities that began Saturday, Sept. 13. The deer kill used to be a nine-day ordeal for those of us who love our deer. Now it is 104 days.
Turkeys of either sex can be killed statewide for all but 10 days from Sept. 13 through Dec. 1.
The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR) added 20 days to the 70-day mourning dove kill that began Sept. 1. Fifteen birds is the daily bag limit. Each shooter can annually kill 1,350 birds. Think passenger pigeon.
Two years ago, the deadly “Conservation” Congress discussed partridge, quail and sharp-tailed grouse, concluding: “Their population is down. Bobwhite quail is all but gone. The decline is nationwide along with the habitat they need.” Thus the 2014 quail kill is stunningly reckless: Oct. 18–Dec. 10. The DNR did not stop killing sharp-tailed grouse until hunters could not find any birds to shoot.
When a species is killed out, the DNR just adds another kill. The agency stirred excitement with an extra teal hunt Sept. 1-7 in addition to those killed in the usual duck seasons. Teal are the smallest dabbling ducks, weighing an average three-quarter pound. They migrate the farthest of any ducks killed here in Wisconsin, wintering as far south as Peru.
Oct. 18–Dec. 31 is the stocked pheasant kill. Hundreds of thousands of pheasants, hand-raised through DNR funding, are thrown out, bewildered, to be killed the next day by shooters accustomed to private ranges with tossed live birds for targets.
There is never protection for coyotes, opossums, skunks, weasels and snowshoe hares.
Trapping starts as early as Oct. 18 for many “furbearers,” and continues through February, March or April depending on the species. The longest killing period is reserved for beavers, which Indians revered as the “sacred center of life” because they create habitat and clean water for half the rare and endangered species on earth.
For the first time, last year the DNR doubled trapping times, expanding to 24-hour killing. New trappers are recruited (over 1,000 a year, including many children) with $5 first-time fees for unlimited killing.
Scientist Lynn Rogers, who opened the Bear Education Center in Ely, Minn., championing peaceful black bears, wrote in his daily newsletter about hunters lining up as the bear season started to kill trusting radio-collared bears on the center’s boundary.
On Sept. 2 Rogers wrote: “A guide told us to stay away from the area that is adjacent to WRI (the bear education center) to the east and not to use the forest road there. He said hunting takes precedence over other activities in the forest during hunting season. … The community is getting fed up with not being able to walk their dogs on their familiar trails for fear of disturbing a hunter.”
Sept. 4 entry: “Bear-hunters shooting in low light by flashlight after legal shooting hours is a widespread problem.” Describing shots fired past 10 p.m., he added, “This happens nightly.” Wounding loss is one of the biggest problems in bear hunting (besides the deliberate killing of innocent natural beings).
Rogers describes a 5-year-old study bear named Ty: “Ty was a playful bear who had good rapport with many other bears. Ty was popular. Many bears knew and trusted him and frequently initiated play — or responded to his initiatives. His relationships extended to sharing food. … Part of Ty’s acceptance by other males may have been due to his calm, trusting demeanor that also extended to humans. We saw Ty’s picture posted as one of the bears killed on Sept. 1 — opening day.”
The Bear Center’s bears are being targeted. Rogers laments, “These are the bears we and the world can learn from. There is much more learning and sharing to be done.”
View a memorial to Hope, the first wild bear whose birth was videotaped for the world to see. She was killed by a hunter the following year.
Unlike Wisconsin’s bear baiting from mid-April through the hunt, Minnesota defers baiting until Aug. 15, allowing bears their natural diet. And Minnesota admits that their population has declined to 10,000-15,000 bears, so they dropped to 3,750 licenses this year. Wisconsin has issued over three times the number of licenses (10,460) against Wisconsin’s population, which DNR guesstimates at 22,000.
In an accelerating human-caused extinction that threatens our life support system, the DNR’s killing business is an outdated patriarchal catastrophe. Why do citizens tolerate this?
Please sign and network a petition to protect Wisconsin wildlife.
Also consider this petition against UW-Madison maternal deprivation studies on baby monkeys then killed by UW.
Read more: http://host.madison.com/news/opinion/column/patricia-randolph-s-madravenspeak-dnr-offers-smorgasbord-of-killing-opportunities/article_ac927475-a6b8-546b-bf79-4f8275a5e32f.html#ixzz3DWypS01m