Changes coming to Utah Mule Deer?

robby denning

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Just got this in an email from Big Game Forever. If you comment, please don't bash, just present your case for agree/disagree:

Folks,

We are very pleased to announce that important legislation to speed Mule Deer Recovery in the state of Utah were signed into law on Saturday, March 17, 2012. I was asked to represent the supporters of Big Game Forever at the signing ceremony. Just before both bills were signed, Representative McIff talked about the sharp decline in mule deer harvest in Utah over the last 30 years. In 1983, 85,000 mule deer were harvested in Utah. Last year, just 19,000 mule deer were harvested.


Now is the time to fix Utah's mule deer herd. Coyotes are a major problem. Sportsmen are the answer. These two bills provide big dollars to incentivize sportsmen to spend more time in the field doing coyote control work. At $1 Million dollars, through targeted control efforts, 20,000 coyotes can be removed at $50 per coyote. This is enough to do control efforts in every part of the state. Over the next couple of weeks, recommendations on how this program may be implemented will be distributed. To sportsmen in Utah, please provide feedback on recommendations as the state of Utah goes through the process of developing this program to control coyotes. The goal is to utilize these dollars in a manner to most effectively increase fawn survival and mule deer recovery statewide. This program should also help predation on livestock across the state.


Below is an article from Sportsmen for Fish and Wildlife on the signing of both SB 87 and SB 245.
--
Ryan Benson
http://biggameforever.org/
[email protected]
 

evan williams

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Well....

I also think that the new units in Utah will help a lot as well. Tag allocation will be critical. I am interested to see what ideas the local Utah Sportsmen have about program development. I am not convinced that coyotes are the main issue though.

This will be interesting.
 
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robby denning

robby denning

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Me either, Evan. I voluntered on a coyote study in Idaho from about 97 though 2001 in Idaho units 56/73A. We learned that coyotes have some effect, but killing them down to a level that makes a difference was very expensive! Money might be better spent on habitat.
Tough issue for sure
 

evan williams

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It really is. Especially when you are looking at allocating $1 million towards a project like this. I have definitely seen a coyote kill a fawn right from under its mother in KS and unfortunately I didn't have my rifle to stop him from getting the little one but I can't see the thought process that has lead to that kind of money being thrown at a project like this.
 
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robby denning

robby denning

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A million dollars would protect a fair bit of winter range in some parts of Idaho from development. That pays back mule deer for years to come. A dead coyote is replaced pretty fast by bigger litters from other coyotes not competing for food with the dead coyote.
 

sreekers

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I don't want to stir the pot, but I have a hard time supporting anything that has ties to Sportsmen for Fish and Wildlife. Its very easy to get people very fired up about predators, and therefore easy to get them to send in money.

Robby, I agree with you, killing coyotes who replenish very quickly isn't THE answer, but is part of the puzzle. A million dead coyotes means nothing if there isn't sustainable land for the fawns to grow up on.
 
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robby denning

robby denning

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sreekers, you're not stirring the pot, just opinion and that's what these forums are for. If you don't support SFW, that is fine and we welcome those opinions backed up with fact or examples.

I tend to agree with you and sometimes don't support SFW, but can't deny they have done some good things for wildlife. Anyone who fights for hunting in this day in age usually helps our cause. They can make strange bedfellows on some issues, though.

thanks for chiming in
 

sreekers

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Robby,
HB2072 in Arizona to me is an example of why I can't support SFW. Unfortunately Utah is simply the model for their success in other places. My struggle with SFW is the propensity for the highest bidder to be the only hunters that you can see coming to Wildlife management. Auction tags do that, no matter how we try to slice it. For me with a limited income who wants my kids to be able to hunt someday this is not something I can sign on to.

Do we have access to the accounting information on what is given to where? How much of the money made from the expo in Utah actually goes to wildlife? How much goes to administration costs, or essentially the pockets of UTSFW? If someone can provide me that information, in a real spreadsheet and not a press release I will stand corrected.

Information in the link below supports the multi-issue portion of what we have talked about. Its from a forum, but links are provided to the Utah DNR.

http://onyourownadventures.com/hunttalk/showthread.php?t=250297

The next link I have is from Chris Denham, someone who has supported HB2072 and based on his letter has now changed his tune. Again, another forum, but it takes guts to go into the opposition's territory and do a write up on your views and change of view.

http://onyourownadventures.com/hunttalk/showthread.php?t=250104&highlight=HB2072

There is more out there, but unfortunately I have to get some work accomplished today as well.

Thank you for a civil response. That is why Rokslide has become my favorite forum.
 
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robby denning

robby denning

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Sreekers,thanks for the links. I did read them, and was swayed by Chris's argument agains the sale of governer type tags.
I assume HB2072 is law as there are still governers' tags in AZ?

I can also see why states bow to the pressure of offerring these tags- quick money! The accounting process you reference in Utah must not be very public I assume?
 

sreekers

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HB2072 has not passed YET, as many hunters have given a huge push to make sure it doesn't pass, both residents and non-residents. There have been several attempts to get it tagged on as a rider to other bills, and a few other backdoor deals. It has been messy. That process has been well documented in other places as well. I can dig up more links with press releases if need be including some from RMEF and several others.

Governors tags are already in existence there, so this bill calls for more tags to be taken from the NR pool, to be given up for auction, or dollar per entry lottery at said expo. The potential for money to be made under a system with zero accountability with the guise of a non-profit is unbelievable!

The biggest issue there is simply that power to do what is best for management of game has been given to organizations outside of the qualified people. We are legislating game and fish practices to organizations that don't give any accounting of where the money came from!

I haven't been able to find any dollar for dollar accounting that shows where/how the money made in Utah was spent. If this bill is passed in Arizona we will see the same type of thing happening there. Lots of room for shady processes under the guise of raising money for wildlife.

http://onyourownadventures.com/hunttalk/showthread.php?t=249451&highlight=HB2072 is a link to kind of separate some of the supporters of what. You will notice one of the mags editors comes out and says his staff is steering clear of SFW. I see that Aron is a writer for that magazine.


Here is a link to the search I did for HB2072:

http://onyourownadventures.com/hunttalk/search.php?searchid=138906



I might be reinventing the wheel enough when this information is already out there.
 

sneek-ee

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Utah needs to let the plan stay in place for a while. The deer herd in the general units is not going to change over night. Dont give it two or three years and say well hey this isn't working, lets try something new. They've done that before. Give the deer some time to come back. As Evan said, tag allocation will be crucial in the deer population! The deer population will NEVER be what is was here though. The deer have lost a lot of crucial habitat that they will never get back. The wasatch front is extremely crowded and crucial winter range is now homes and cities! Also, as stated earlier, this money could be better spent elsewhere, HABITAT. I dont feel coyotes are the main issue at all. It may be an "easy fix" or an "easy answer" for the DWR to throw out to the public to make them think that it will help and get their mind off of the lacking deer numbers. It feels like they are throwing the "fix" solution of the deer herd back on the hunters. hey, our management plans havent quite worked out and have been pretty poor, so go shoot a coyote and we'll give ya 50 bucks. Utah needs to stick with something. Yes, we do have good deer here!! Every year if you put in a little footwork and effort you will have the chance to shoot a mature buck!! Cut the number of tags for a while. Hopefully people wont get so ancy and shoot the first thing that moves!

Yes, sportsman for fish and wildlfe has done good for wildlife. But i dont support them or agree with them. as sreekers said, for the people like me and the average hunter out there, our opportunities are being taken away, no matter what SFW wants to say. I'm not for the high dollar tags, and the same people being able to afford and buy governor type tags each year at auction. This is NOT what hunting is about. Hunting nowdays is more about bigger and better. sponsorships, being on this killin crew, doing this or that. Thats not how i was raised and brought up to hunting. No one here on rokslide was. that's why this website was made. this is for the people who DIY, enjoy being with family and friends and have the dedication and motivation to bring others into hunting and seeing the joy and fun in it. Not just the sport and killing the biggest and the best. The mentality of hunting now days is not good. Thats why i am happy rokslide has its own site and forum. Its for those who appreciate what they got, down to earth, real life everyday people!
 
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bearguide

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how ever you look at it habitat is the real answer. dogs and other predators need to be kept in ck but the limiting factor is still food. we need better winter range habitat for deer. utah is throwing money at coyote's b/c it is an easy popular place to show you are trying to do something. but it is not super productive
 

sreekers

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I completely agree, habitat is far and away the best way to keep big game numbers high. Winter range is the most important and I will support organizations that are the most active in preservation of such.
 
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