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HOW MANY TAGS ARE ENOUGH??
Posted: 11 December 2014 11:14 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 61 ]
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Well said Mattg. I assume we are worried about the whitetail deer more than others because it IS THE MONEY MAKING ANIMAL IN ILLINOIS AND AMERICA sad but true. Over ducks, quail, pheasants, geese, turkey, rabbits and trapping!. I love quail, pheasants and turkey. I sit in my ground blind and love to listen to a pheasant crow and watch a covey of quail move thru the timber. I personally do not hunt them.  Deer are our number 1 animal period!. Everyone is entitled to their opinion and I respect that , but the white tailed deer is the number one hunted animal in North America.

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Posted: 11 December 2014 12:50 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 62 ]
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The focus on deer is because it is the most popular form of hunting.  Obviously the most popular game is going to receive the most exposure.  I also believe it is receiving the focus it has because it is such an easy problem to solve compared to other game animals.  DNR management could make changes to replenish the deer herds to Joint Task Force agreed levels fairly easily with tag allocation changes.  Trying to reestablish pheasants and quail is a much harder problem to solve because their issue is lack of suitable habitat.

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Posted: 11 December 2014 08:23 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 63 ]
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Buckbull you nailed it, well said.  This isn’t rocket science.  If the new group that will soon be at the IDNR has a goal, they will achieve it.  The current staff’s goals were obvious, wipe out the whitetail deer herd.

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Posted: 12 December 2014 04:13 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 64 ]
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Rtt , i dont thiink anyone on here has said anything like to hell with everyone else . We are worried about the deer herd and fixing the problem we all have created . The whitetail alliance is trying to give DEER hunters a voice just like these other groups have .cutting tags , shortening seasons for deer wont have an impact on quail, pheasant,rabbit or duck hunting will it? Us as deer hunters also have a right to chime in and im sick of other groups putting the deer herd behind their agenda . Its about time deer hunters come together and if it gets others panties in a bunch i personally dont care . What the hell does this have to do with quail hunters anyway ?

Mattg, First there is nothing wrong with looking out for the whitetail population within our state. Second, yes deer hunters should have a voice in management practices. Matt, what other groups have opposed anything IWA has proposed yet ?? Nobody that I am aware of has their panties in a bunch, but a few deer hunters, so your dog is treed up the wrong tree my friend. Matt, maybe a short history lesson is need here, because in the past several years certain individuals affiliated with the IWA have had no problem chiming in on topics that effect other user groups, so I see no harm in all user groups has having a voice. We have been hearing so much, and things seem to be changing even as we speak, that we have no idea what real changes may take effect. We don’t want an Obama care package tossed in front of use again with someone saying we need to pass it to know what’s inside. 

Matt, I have been down the road on several wildlife issues over the years, and I have the skid marks upon my back from the DDT (Deer,Duck,Turkey) groups. I have seen for years these groups obtain considerations for many things, while other user groups have been put on the back burner. ......................RTT  

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Posted: 12 December 2014 11:44 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 65 ]
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RTT, that was a very UNCLEAR history lesson.  What exactly are you speaking of when you say IWA members have been chiming in on certain issues that affect other user groups?  I’m not trying to be an aggitator, I simply think that’s about as vague a statement as could be made after you promised a lesson.

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Posted: 12 December 2014 06:48 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 66 ]
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RTT, that was a very UNCLEAR history lesson.  What exactly are you speaking of when you say IWA members have been chiming in on certain issues that affect other user groups?  I’m not trying to be an aggitator, I simply think that’s about as vague a statement as could be made after you promised a lesson.

goodsoil, Certain individuals within the IWA have chimed in on other wildlife issues that I have worked on in the past, and these issues had nothing to do with whitetail deer hunting. This has happen on more than just one occasion goodsoil.  The lesson is we are all part of the big picture, and everyone should have a right to chime in, no matter how big, or how small the group. Part of the problem we are facing now might have very well be avoided if that tactic had been applied from the start, but here we are today. ......RTT

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Posted: 12 December 2014 10:38 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 67 ]
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Thanks, clear as mud!

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Posted: 13 December 2014 08:48 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 68 ]
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Rtt .I have no idea what the history lesson is you are refering to. Compairing our wants of deer management to obama care is just silly . I believe the iwa has been very transparent in their proposals. I also believe your the one who stated other groups would be chiming in as their proposals would affect these other groups. Heres a history lesson for you . Deer seasons ( controlled hunting ) was brought about because of the uncontrolled slaughter of our deer herd . We are back repeating that . When there are more tags sold than deer and are sold , it tells me too many tags are being sold which is the same as having no limits on harvest. The state has allowed a wholesale slaughter of our states greatest natural resource and its time to do something about it . It almost seems that you are upset at the iwa as a whole . your right , we as hunters are mostly responsible for this mess and we cant change the past (i think thats what you were saying) however when a gruop like the iwa steps up and tries to advocate for change we as hunters should do our research and make a choice and if you agree support them if not then do something about it not just adopt a wait and see attitude in case some other group may get offended .

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Posted: 14 December 2014 10:30 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 69 ]
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Matt, if there is any wait and seeing it will be waiting to see what the IWA actual proposes, and other groups as well. I think Kevin even said that this was a work in progress, and I think he said they were still looking into different proposals even still. Nothing set in stone for sure yet, and that has its good points, as well as it’s bad side.  look I am open to dialogue to make any of our resources better, and more available to our citizens, and that means all of them, not just one segment. Matt, I have herd all kinds of rumors about all different types of changes, and until they have something they are willing to take to the legislature in writing then everything is subject to interpretation. I just want to see what the IWA will take forward after they have discussed this with the powers at hand, and have a final resolution to take forward. I feel they might have a way to go before that happens, and if any changes may be in store due to the new political environment in Springfield. I will support the IWA as long as a dialogue exist between other groups, and the IWA, but if that line of communication falls apart, then The IWA will be upon its own. I hope that is not the case, and I don’t think it will be, but I have seen strange things happen over the years with issues like this, as I am sure others have as well.

On a side note I got out this morning to do a little muzzleloader hunting. I seen three nice bucks, but not the one I was looking for. I also seen seven doe’s, so I think we will be in fine shape for next season. I have plenty of meat in the freezer, and seen no need to add to it today. Still doing well in southern Illinois…..........RTT

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Posted: 15 December 2014 10:21 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 70 ]
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RTT, let me clear a few things up…

First off, IWA has a proposal.  We’ve had it since last February.  We tweaked one piece of it over the summer (after the IDNR survey on the one-buck limit), and we’re going to re-work the piece on NR permits.  The main part of the proposal is to get populations back up to agreed-upon levels.  The public was lied to over the JDTF objectives and DVA goals.  We’ve discussed this proposal with the “powers at hand” (IDNR) and they refused to listen.  Now that they’re not the “powers at hand” anymore, we’ll try again.  Not much needs tweaked… we need to kill fewer does, and the IDNR needs to manage to agreed-upon levels and objectives.

We have no plans to take the entire proposal to legislators, unless something in the proposal specifically needs addressed by statute.  Nobody wants deer management tied to politics and written into law.  We don’t need lawmakers telling us if there are to many deer, too few deer, or how to manage the deer.  That’s what got us into some of this mess to begin with.

I’m not sure what you expect from IWA.  As our name implies, we get involved with whitetail issues.  That’s what we know about.  I’m not up on trapping issues, waterfowl issues, bike trail issues, or anything else… and I don’t expect other user groups to know the deer issues like we do.  If other groups want our support… they can come to us, just like we’ve went to other groups (IFOR, WTU, IBS, etc.) for support.  At a recent Rauner event, I was ripped by a member of your group for NOT getting involved in other sportsmen’s issues… specifically for not going public and supporting the bobcat bill.  I personally mentioned the bill in a blog here on HO and supported it… and within a few weeks I was ripped for bringing it up and drawing attention to it and copying/pasting the contents of the bill because it mentioned the word “trapping” in it.  Guess we’re damned if we do and damned if we don’t.  IWA is less than a year old.  We recruited people who could help the cause, which includes people who have been involved in past issues on other topics.  I’m really not sure what your comments mean… that “certain individuals” have chimed in on other issues.  Maybe they have… on other issues… just not as an official spokesperson for IWA.  I would like to know more details about who/what you’re talking about, though.

IWA has been up front with other groups tied to deer hunting.  We got up in front of the IFOR exec. board to go over the entire thing.  Most groups we talk to won’t give 100% support because they oppose one little piece of it here and there… or they don’t like certain people on our board.  IFOR supported IWA’s “efforts” to help turn the deer herd around, but wouldn’t support the proposal itself.  And I still don’t know what piece they oppose.  But IWA still joined IFOR as an affiliate organization.  Are you implying that we need to get 100% support from every outdoor user group in the state for every single piece of the proposal before we proceed?  What “powers at hand” do we have to get to bless our individual proposal before we can proceed?

The fact of the matter is… we’ve been dealing with this situation for nearly 2 years now, since the EHD effect from 2012.  IWA is the only organized group to put forth a proposal of any kind… and we’ve only been a group for a few months.  What are all the other groups doing?  Waiting for another year?  We waited for 2013 DVA rates… then waited for the election… now we need to wait till a new director takes the helm… then we’ll have to wait to see what they do… and we’ll lose another year in the process.  I’ve heard groups ask to “let the biologists manage the herd.”  Do they understand that one of the problems is BECAUSE of the current biologists managing the herd?  I’ve heard groups say they WANT the deer herd to be decimated so they can get back to not having to share the woods with all the other hunters.  Is THAT how we should be managing our resource?

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Posted: 15 December 2014 01:44 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 71 ]
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Well said Kevin.  I for one, appreciate what the IWA is trying to accomplish.  Please keep up the good work and thanks for keeping us updated on this website and the email that came out recently.

I think when people say “let the biologists manage the herd”; what they are really saying is to let science and sound wildlife management take precedence over special interests.  The state really needs to start listening to their core management tool for deer control.  Its in IDNRs best interest to keep deer populations at levels that keeps hunter interest high.

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Posted: 15 December 2014 08:12 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 72 ]
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RTT   I’m starting a new group but I need a president/spokesperson to get the message out, that’s where you come in.  I call it The ISA.  Illinois Squirrel Alliance because we just can’t get enough nuts to nibble on. 

Give it a rest   Nobody cares

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Posted: 15 December 2014 09:07 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 73 ]
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Well guys, the last 2 years I’ve been telling you that your fine state needs to limit tags, in particular doe tags for every hunter and landowner. As a NR, and a conservative hunter, when myself & son, & son-n-law visited your state to hunt public land, we took only our buck and doe, and not every year. I have been advocating that unlimited doe tags was going to get your herd in trouble, and of course thats not the only thing that produced the problem. Glad to see that most on this web site now realize this and some are voluntarily taking only 1 to 3 deer for the freezer. As a NR, I certainly hope not all of you think we come in to take the horns and throw the meat for the coyotes to eat. Some of us are"ethical” hunters and conservationist by heart. Yes your state has a problem, and I certainly wish the best for you as residents that your DNR & politicians can see the problem you have, and the mistrust in their management of your natural resources ( deer ). By the way, we saw more deer this year than last year, just could not seal the deal on a buck, not that we didn’t see plenty, just couldn’t get them to stop for the bow shot due to chasing does.

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Posted: 16 December 2014 08:32 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 74 ]
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Kevin, first and from most the bobcat bill you mentioned when it was brought forward we were told that you wanted some changes made in order to allow the shooting of coyotes from deer stands. Right off the bat we had somebody wanting to change something with the language of legislation that for some people was a hot bed of emotions anyway, and to have that come from another sportsmen’s/women’s group was a little of surprise after you, and many others were informed this was going to move forward. We were not opposed to the move Kevin, but just wanted the bobcat issue to stand upon its own language and legislation, that was all. This has happen on two occasions, and each time with the bobcats language, so yes you as a IWA official have chimed in on non whitetail issues. 

Another thing Kevin I think if you want anything done with the deer herd you better try to make some legislative moves. Administrative rule has it good points, but it also has a bad side Kevin, and I think the deer hunters of Illinois are experiencing some of that now. It takes more effort by an agency Kevin to make changes to regulations that are established that way, but it also protects those regulations, or plans from getting just tossed out by maybe a future director that wants to rape the DNR again. Also it does not take that long to make changes legislative wise if all parties are on board, and something needs changed right away that is very important. I feel Kevin you need to give your works some bite, and the legislative angle is the only way that will happen. I laugh when people say that don’t want to get the legislature involved in these types of matters, well to late they have been for years, and the people that oppose some of your very actions don’t mind using it, so you better get familiar with the legislative process real quick.

As far as who confronted you at the Rauner event, well that was not me Kevin, but I have an idea whom it might have been.  Kevin refine your plan, and see what we end up with after the DNR gets done with it. You know the DNR will make changes, and it does not matter who is the director is unless you have an inside line on whitetail biologist job ? If so then I guess your in the cat birds seat, but if not you know that not all parts of your plan will be adopted. I would like to see what we have after all is said, and done from all parties. Yes Kevin I know not everyone is going to agree on every little point, just the nature of people that is a given. Common ground is not real hard to find if all parties are interested in doing what is right, and not derailing a process, that is why I said I will wait and see what is the final product is. I wish you the best Kevin….........................RTT


LOL..  Illinois squirrel alliance .......That is just funny….............RTT

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Posted: 16 December 2014 02:23 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 75 ]
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RTT, thanks for the reply.  Still a little confused, though…

First off, several years ago (maybe 2007?) there was a bill introduced to allow hunting/trapping of bobcats and river otters.  At the time, Illinois Bowhunters Society (IBS) was trying to remove the language from Wildlife Code that made it illegal to kill a coyote from a treestand.  IDNR “recommended” that since this all involved furbearers, that they add it all into one bill to make it easy.  I can’t remember who ran that bill (Senator Sieben, maybe?)... not really important, though.  The bill failed and we realized we should have just ran the coyote/treestand bill on its own instead of being talked into pushing it in the other bill that was already doomed to fail.

A few years later (2009 to be exact) we ran the coyote/treestand bill by itself with Rep. Kay Hatcher and got it passed with not a single bit of opposition.

In both of these cases, I was the legislative liaison for Illinois Bowhunters Society… as this SPECIFIC language we were talking about dealt with deer hunters, hunting for deer, out of a treestand, and not being able to shoot coyotes.

Now we’re in 2014, and the bobcat bill was introduced.  I warned Scotty Bryant about the way current statute was worded. It is still illegal to kill a furbearing mammal (except coyotes) from a treestand.  Bowhunters were already saying that they wanted this bill to pass so they could shoot bobcats while bowhunting.  I simply pointed out that this wouldn’t be the case, but IBS wasn’t interested in asking for ANY changes.  In fact, here’s what I specifically told Scotty and Bob Becker before the January IFOR board meeting… email is from January 21, 2014.

“IBS isn’t pushing for this treestand exemption to be added to the bill at all.  I just think it needs to be discussed further before a final decision is made.  I would hate to derail this bill… you know how long it’s been discussed.  There’s plenty of opposition to it as it stands… not to mention adding language to open it up to all deer hunters (including gun hunters during the open season) to shoot bobcats.  Coyotes were easy to exempt… they don’t climb trees and they aren’t as “respected” (for lack of a better word) as bobcats. Would also hate to lose the support of trappers… if we asked for the exemption.”

The response I got back from Scotty said…

“We will be asking that the bobcat be added too the coyote It like the coyote should be excluded “

Our concern (as a bowhunting organization) was that bowhunters were going to assume that they would be OK to shoot a bobcat from a treestand… just like coyotes.  I didn’t want unsuspecting bowhunters turned into game law violators.  I didn’t know the intent of the bill… but was just letting people know what the current law said.

There’s your history on this topic.  Not sure what you’ve been told.  Also… this was in early January.  I was representing IBS on an email where Scotty asked for opinions on this bill.  IWA hadn’t even met for the first time.  I (nor anyone else) was representing IWA at the time.

Now… just so everyone knows… If for some reason Quinn would sign this bobcat hunting bill that’s on his desk, it would STILL be illegal to shoot a bobcat from a treestand with any weapon.  Here’s the current language of the Wildlife Code… which isn’t modified in the current bill.

“(aa) It is unlawful to use or possess any device that may be used for tree climbing or cutting, while hunting fur-bearing mammals, excluding coyotes.”

Bobcats are furbearing mammals… and ALL treestands are classified by law enforcement as “tree climbing devices.”  The bill we ran in 2009 added the 2 words at the end of the sentence, and was required by IDNR law enforcement to be inserted to allow deer hunters to shoot coyotes from a treestand.

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