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  • October 31, 2007

    Discussion Update: Prof. Teaches Concealed-Carry Class

    By Dave Hurteau & Chad Love

    Here’s the latest, from KSL Newsradio:
    Events on Tuesday will commemorate the six-month anniversary of an incident that shocked the nation. A student at Virginia Tech systematically gunned down students and teachers, killing 32.

    At one university in Utah that incident is being used to justify a push for more concealed weapons.
    Some professors are packing heat and maybe some students too. A class in Weber State University's Continuing Education Program is specifically aimed at getting people on and off campus to carry guns.

    Classroom instructions are given by a professor of anthropology, who doubles as a concealed weapons instructor. Ron Holt says, "I see carrying a concealed weapon as a kind of life insurance policy: 99.99 times you'll never need it, but if you ever do need it, you'll probably really need it."

  • October 31, 2007

    Is This Thing A Sasquatch?

    By Dave Hurteau & Chad Love

    From Yahoo News:

    ... about the only thing certain about the critter photographed by a hunter's camera is that some people have gotten the notion it could be a Sasquatch, or bigfoot. Others say it's just a bear with a bad skin infection.

    Capt76f68acf986b804a0396fc80d63e75Rick Jacobs says he got the pictures from a camera with an automatic trigger that he fastened to a tree in the Allegheny National Forest, about 115 miles northeast of Pittsburgh, hoping to photograph deer.

    What do you think? (You can click the photo to enlarge it).

  • October 30, 2007

    Discussion Topic: Bilingual Posted Signs

    By Dave Hurteau & Chad Love

    From WBAY 2 News:
    Racial tensions and communication barriers between white and Hmong hunters have led to seven hunter deaths in Wisconsin over the past three years.

    [Now], state officials, conservation groups, and Hmong leaders are working to bring harmony to the woods this fall. A Waupaca County man is also joining in those efforts. . . . His solution was to make No Trespassing and Private Property signs in both English and Hmong. A Hmong coworker helped Humbert with the translation.

    "People are understanding that I'm not out to make a quick buck, I'm not out to be racist or discriminative toward any race. I'm out there to help bridge the communication barrier or that gap," [Eric Humbert] says.

    Check out the full story and tell us your reaction.

  • October 30, 2007

    Oregon Archer Bags Second-Chance Record Muley

    By Dave Hurteau & Chad Love

    As this Statesman Journal article puts it, a hunter might go a lifetime without getting a shot at a such a buck. But this hunter got two. Chris Dunlap missed this giant on August 27th. On September 8th, though, he made his second chance count, dropping what after a 60-day drying period may well be the new state record nontypical velvet muley.

  • October 26, 2007

    F&S Exclusive: John Edwards Interview

    By Dave Hurteau & Chad Love

    Yesterday’s heavy and heated response to Presidential Candidate John Edwards’ proposed “Hunting and Fishing Bill of Rights and Responsibilities” prompted us to call the North Carolina Senator and discuss the details. F&S Associate Editor, Brian McClintock, asked Edwards about some of his policy points, how he enjoys the outdoors, and what he thinks about gun ownership.

    Field & Stream: Why is the “Hunting and Fishing Bill of Rights and Responsibilities” is important to you and to American hunters and anglers?

    John Edwards: I grew up in rural America, and it’s a huge part of who I am. I want to ensure that hunters and fishermen’s rights are being watched over and protected. I think it’s important for the country because we have a lot of outdoorsmen who care about having access to land, being able to hunt and fish, having clean water, and to just be able to enjoy the outdoors. I think it’s important for America, and I think it’s important for people who hunt and fish.

    F&S: What do you think is the single largest threat to hunting and fishing?

    JE: I think there are two. One is having access to lands to hunt and fish on, and ensuring that those lands are available. Secondly, to protect and preserve the land and water so that it continues to be available for generations to come

    F&S: You say you hunted as a boy, what outdoor activities do you currently participate in?

    JE: Oh, I still love to fish. I don’t hunt anymore, but I haven’t hunted since I was a young boy. I’ve basically fished all my life -- both saltwater and freshwater, but I probably do more freshwater fishing. I love spending time in the woods. I live on a big piece of land, and we have a great opportunity to spend time out in the woods, myself, my wife, my kids. We enjoy the outdoors, we love them.

    F&S: How do you plan on protecting gun rights and promoting gun safety?

    JE: I think, first and foremost, that we need a president who actually believes in the Second Amendment and in the individual right to own firearms. And, the importance in that, both for hunting and for protection, and I do. I think part of it is the way of life that I grew up with, and the culture of which I grew up in. It’s been with me my entire life.

    I think there are some reasonable things that we can do to make sure we keep guns out of the hands of people like that young man who did the killings at Virginia Tech. I think we can fill in some holes that exist in the system today. I haven’t met a hunter yet who needed an AK-47 to hunt, but I think we need to be very careful to make sure that the second amendment rights are protected.

    F&S: What are some of those holes?

    JE: I think we can use the Virginia Tech shootings as instructions. It was a young man who had obvious and identified mental and emotional problems. It was well documented in court records, but because we haven’t done an effective job of filling the gaps in our national system, he didn’t get identified when he went to buy a gun. That’s exactly the kind of thing I’m talking about. Making sure the public’s protected from people who have serious criminal records and people who have serious emotional and mental problems from having guns.

    F&S: How do you hope to preserve Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) land with many farmers looking to take advantage of the high corn prices by turning their CRP fields into cornfields?

    JE: Well, first of all, I don’t want to get too far out there because this is largely done through the Farm Bill, and I want to see what actually comes out of that. My position is pretty simple. I support the CRP to make sure that farmers and land owners make the steps necessary to preserve their land. My experience with farmers in North Carolina and in Iowa and in other places in the country is that most family farmers are both responsive and responsible to conservation efforts because their land has been in their families for years. They care about ensuring that the land is, in fact, preserved and that conservation efforts are undertaken.

    I think the role of public policy in this is to make sure that, through the Farm Bill, this program receives the support it deserves.

    F&S: How do you plan to balance the Roadless Rule with maintaining access to land?

    JE: President Clinton was a big supporter of the Roadless Rule, and George Bush reversed it. Basically, what I want to go back to is the form in which the rule existed when the Clinton Administration went out of office. The idea is to preserve these lands and meet our environmental responsibility.

    F&S: How are you hoping the Hunting and Fishing Bill of Rights and Responsibilities is used in the future?

    JE: Some of these things are very specific, and will require laws to be changed or be passed. For example, the Open Fields Program provides federal funding to encourage private landowners to allow people to hunt and fish on their lands. The public access camps give people more voice in local land management. For those things that require changes to the law, I will make proposals to congress to make changes.

    Taking steps to necessary to enforce the Clean Water Act (CWA) is more administrative because the CWA already exits. It’s just a matter of making sure we cut down on mercury pollution based on what science says can be done. The Second Amendment exists. We just need a president who recognizes that it exists. And we need a president that will make sure that the Bureau of Land Management is actually looking out for the public’s interest in public land. Some of these points have to do with the way you administer responsibilities that the president and administration already have, and some have to do with changes in the law and funding.

  • October 26, 2007

    Another Elk Hunter Kills Charging Grizzly

    By Dave Hurteau & Chad Love

    As some western sportsmen eagerly await a hunting season for recently delisted grizzly bears, others are getting their opportunity early—but not in a way anyone would want. Late Tuesday morning, yet another elk hunter had to protect himself against a charging griz, with deadly results.

    From Montana’s Great Falls Tribune:

    Carl Haggar of East Glacier was hunting elk [in Lewis and Clark National Forest] when he encountered the 350-pound female and a cub-of-the-year . . . . The [sow] charged Haggar at 20 feet. At eight feet, Haggar fired one shot which struck the bear in the head and killed it instantly.

  • October 26, 2007

    You Tube Video Uncovers Dumbest Poachers Ever

    By Dave Hurteau & Chad Love

    This link comes from reader Joseph Ballmer, who writes: “Here’s this week's nominee for ‘Dumbest Poachers Ever.’ Not only did they poach, they filmed themselves poaching, AND posted it on the internet.”

    From the Toledo Blade:

    Two men have been convicted for poaching steelhead trout after they decided to post a video of their illegal activities on the popular YouTube Web site.

    Thanks, Joseph.

  • October 25, 2007

    Discussion Topic: Edwards Proposes “Hunting and Fishing Bill of Rights”

    By Dave Hurteau & Chad Love

    Yesterday, with support from the 350-member Iowa Sportsmen and Sportswomen for Edwards Committee, Democratic presidential candidate John Edwards proposed a federal "Hunting and Fishing Bill of Rights and Responsibilities” he says is designed to improve access, protect gun ownership, preserve clean water for fishing, secure our public-land national heritage, and empower citizens to be better stewards.

    From IowaPolitics.com:

    “Growing up in small, rural towns, I learned early that America has been blessed with a wealth of natural resources,” said Edwards. “Just as it is our right to enjoy America’s forests, mountains, fields and streams, it is also our responsibility to protect them for generations to come. But the Bush Administration has waged war on the environment, putting corporate interests ahead of our natural heritage at every turn. It’s time to reverse this destruction and renew our commitment to protecting our natural treasures.”

    Check out the full press release and tell us your reaction.

  • October 24, 2007

    Discussion Topic: Students Launch Empty Holster Protest

    By Dave Hurteau & Chad Love

    Evanpeck01From The Columbus Dispatch:

    It's what Evan Peck didn't carry around the Ohio State campus that he wanted people to notice yesterday.

    Peck, 21, walked to his classes wearing an empty gun holster on his waist.

    "You can carry (a gun) in several places, but Ohio prohibits you from carrying at a university or college. . . . But this campus is the one place where I spend the most of my time, and I should be able to protect myself."

    This week, students across the country . . . are wearing empty holsters to spark conversations about concealed-carry rules. . . . About 5,000 people are expected to have joined the protest by the end of the week. . . .

    Check out the full story and tell us your reaction.

  • October 24, 2007

    Maryland Governor Backs Bear Hunt

    By Dave Hurteau & Chad Love

    Anyone who’s been following this blog—or any other outdoor news outlet—knows all the gory details surrounding the demise of New Jersey’s black bear season. More recently, anti-hunting interests had set their sights on Maryland’s bruin hunt. But to no avail. Despite heavy pressure from The Humane Society of the United States—including a full-page ad in The Baltimore Sun—Gov. Martin O’Malley, a democrat, has told the antis, in the words of Cumberland Times-News columnist Michael A. Sawyers, to pound sand.

    “So, thank you Governor O’Malley,” writes Sawyers, “for being a stand-up guy, for not dealing with the bear hunt in a political way, but in a scientific way.”

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