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  • November 25, 2008

    Sportsmen Lose Advocate at House Committee Chair-0

    by

    Now that things have
    calmed down—relatively speaking, of course—on the national political scene
    since the November 4 elections, sportsmen may not be paying as close attention
    to the goings-on in Washington, D.C. as they were earlier in the year.

    However, a strategic move
    that unseated a longtime sportsmen’s advocate from a powerful House committee
    leadership position last week could have far-reaching ramifications in the
    approaching legislative session.

    By a slim margin of
    137-122 last Thursday, House Democrats voted to buck seniority and strip the
    longest-serving member of the U.S. House of Representatives, Michigan’s John
    Dingell, of the chairmanship of the Committee on Energy and Commerce.

    In his place will be Rep.
    Henry Waxman, whose constituents include residents of Beverly Hills, Malibu and
    Santa Monica, Calif.

    Why was this move
    significant for hunters and anglers, you ask?

    Waxman has a long history
    of supporting extreme environmental issues, animal rights causes and anti-gun
    legislation. He is a darling of the nation’s most vociferous anti-hunting
    organization, the Humane Society of the United States. Hunter-advocacy groups
    fear that in his influential position, Waxman may be poised to utilize the federal Endangered
    Species Act to curtail current scientific wildlife management practices by linking certain species and habitats to the wider issue of global climate change.

    Ec01jn91.183

    On the other hand, Rep. Dingell has been a tireless champion of sportsmen
    issues for decades. His namesake Dingell-Johnson Act, also known as the
    Sportfishing Restoration Act, annually provides millions of dollars to states
    for fisheries, boat ramps and fishing access.

    “Rep. Dingell
    understood and cared about sportsmen and their devotion to conservation,” said
    Rob Sexton, Vice President of Government Affairs of the U.S. Sportsmen’s Alliance. “(Waxman) has voted for nearly all anti-firearm bills in Congress going
    back to the so-called ‘Assault Weapon Ban’ and the ‘Brady Bill.’ Both of
    those bills were punitive and designed to prohibit law abiding citizens from
    engaging in their constitutional rights.”


    [ Read Full Post ]
  • November 25, 2008

    JR's Random Outdoor Quote-0

    by

    "Some people ask
    why men go hunting. They must be the kind of people who seldom get far from
    highways. What do they know of the tryst a hunting man keeps with the wind and
    the trees and the sky? Hunting? The means are greater than the end, and every
    hunter knows it."

    -Gordon MacQuarrie

    Field & Stream, 1939

    [ Read Full Post ]
  • November 19, 2008

    Former State Delegate (D) Attacked by Buck (R)-0

    by

    A lobbyist and former
    Maryland state lawmaker who was attacked and repeatedly gored by a whitetail
    buck as he walked his Labrador retriever last week is recovering from multiple
    puncture wounds inflicted in the melee.

    Gilbert Genn, a former
    state delegate from Montgomery County, said when the deer appeared on the front
    lawn of his Gaithersburg home, his chocolate Lab, Yuffie, ran to chase it off,
    but the buck didn’t budge.

    “It came right at me, from
    about 10 feet away. I tried to run at an angle, but it caught me flush in the
    back right leg, impaled me with its weight, knocked me to the ground. It
    started to come right at my face with its antlers,”
    Genn told Washington, DC’s
    WTOP radio
    .

    The attacking buck rammed
    the former delegate three times, inflicting wounds to his leg, chest and groin.

    Recovering from the attack
    after treatment in a local hospital emergency room, the lobbyist, who served as
    a Democrat in Maryland’s House of Representatives from 1987 until 1999, joked
    that the deer’s actions were possibly motivated by its political party
    affiliation. 

    “Not to get
    too partisan, but I’m convinced it was a Republican deer, because it happened
    right where we had our Obama sign,” said Genn. “And all the deer could do was
    attack, attack, attack. So it had to be a Republican deer.”

    Some
    politicians just don’t know when to quit, do they?

    [ Read Full Post ]
  • November 17, 2008

    S. Carolina’s 2nd Amendment Sales Tax Holiday-0

    by

    Gun owners and Second Amendment-rights watchers: here’s a great idea that we’d love to see catch on with state lawmakers across the country.  

    Holiday
    As a result of legislation passed this summer, South Carolina will have its first-ever Second Amendment Sales Tax Holiday on the two days after Thanksgiving this year.

    The Palmetto State’s
    48-hour reprieve from imposing its 6-percent state sales tax on firearms will begin at 12:01 a.m. on Nov. 28 and continue through 11:59 p.m. Nov. 29. The Second Amendment Sales Tax Holiday will apply to the purchase of “fixed-cartridge handguns, shotguns and rifles.”

    So-called sales tax holiday bills are nothing new for state legislatures. In 2008, a total of 13
    states either reduced or eliminated sales tax on the purchase of back-to-school clothing and supplies during the final weeks of August.

    But South Carolina
    proudly stands alone with its ambitious 2-day removal of the state’s sales tax on guns.

    And it didn’t come
    easily, either.

    In fact,the South Carolina House and Senate had to override Republican Gov. Mark
    Sanford’s initial veto
    of S1143 to finally pass the Second Amendment Recognition Act” in late June.

    The bill was introduced by State Representative Mike Pitts, a pro-gun stalwart and recipient of the
    NRA’s Rick Daniel Memorial Defender of Freedom Award.2ndammend

    Supporters hope the tax break will translate into increased sales for gun shops and sporting goods stores, coming as it does during what are traditionally two of the biggest shopping days of the calendar year.

    The South Carolina Department of Revenue clarified that sales of items such as ammunition, black powder, holsters, archery supplies, antique guns and collectible guns will continue have state sales tax applied during the two-day period. In addition, the South Carolina tax holiday does not affect federal excise tax, which is imposed on all firearms and ammunition under the Pittman-Robertson Act.

    [ Read Full Post ]
  • November 13, 2008

    Heartland Hunters: Watch for Meth By-Products-0

    by

    With the opening of firearms deer season this weekend, the Indiana State Police is warning hunters to avoid touching and moving items they find in the woods that may be
    associated with clandestine methamphetamine production.
    Meth lab


    It’s an unfortunate and disturbing sign of the times in middle America.

    Across portions of the nation’s heartland, illegal use of the highly addictive substance—and its production—is considered epidemic.

    In one Hoosier county alone, Noble, authorities have reportedly seized 62 meth labs so far in 2008—up from 34 last year and 24 the year before.

    Indiana State Police Trooper Rob Smith told the Ft. Wayne Journal-Gazette this week that meth production used to be a somewhat complicated endeavor that required the highly toxic farming fertilizer anhydrous ammonia, which often was stolen from farm supply stores.

    But beginning earlier this year, the trooper said a change started taking place, and more illegal cooking operators switched to what he called the “one-pot method,” which produces smaller quantities of the drug but doesn’t create the telltale fumes or require anhydrous ammonia.Methamphetamine4

    Trooper Smith told the Ft.Wayne paper that not only has the method led to an increase in production in urban areas, but it also makes it easier for producers to dump their garbage in the woods or on a roadside. Police recently arrested a man who had a one-pot lab in his backpack, he said.

    In a joint statement issued this week, the Indiana State Police and Department of Natural Resources offered the following advice for the estimated 250,000 Indianans heading out for deer hunting this weekend, as the firearms season opens November 15:

    -Methamphetamine “cooks” use a variety of containers to manufacture the drug, and small gas cans are popular. Don’t pick up a discarded gas can, even if it looks new.

    -Other trash that could indicate a meth lab: Battery casings, clear plastic bags, empty blister packs and containers such as pop bottles and jars.

    -Be careful of any discarded cylinder with a modified valve; it could have contained the volatile chemical anhydrous ammonia.

    [ Read Full Post ]
  • November 11, 2008

    Minnesota Hunters Track Deer, Find Cougars-0

    by
    After tracking a whitetail doe one of them shot yesterday
    morning, two hunters in northeastern Minnesota were not the first to find the
    expired deer.

    Ted
    Kline and hunting partner Ron Smith waited for a few minutes before heading out
    to retrieve the deer on Kline’s property along the Artichoke River, about 25
    miles northwest of Duluth. When they found the deer, they were surprised to
    discover a pair of mountain lions tearing flesh from the carcass. 
      

    “When we got there they had both been eating on it. We
    scared them off, but they kept circling us. They didn’t want to leave,”
    Kline
    told the Duluth News-Tribune
    .

    Doe


    Kline says he has no doubt the animals were puma
    concolor
    . He said they had long tails, were
    about three feet in length and definitely were not bobcats, wolves or coyotes.

    The hunters said they phoned a third friend for assistance
    so that two men could drag the deer while a third could watch for the mountain
    lions, with a ready rifle, just in case.

    “The chunks they tore off that doe were huge. The claw
    marks were huge,” Kline told the newspaper.

    He estimated the cougars ate about a third of the deer
    meat in the time span between shooting and recovery, around 30 minutes.

    Cougar sightings are not uncommon in far-northern
    Minnesota, though it is quite unusual to see two lions together in any natural
    setting, as they are mostly solitary hunters.

    John Erb, a forest wildlife biologist for the Minnesota
    Department of Natural Resources, said his department receives about 200 reports
    of cougar sightings each year, but confirmations—from photos, tracks or
    scat—are uncommon.

    “We
    had two confirmed last year, including one near Floodwood…but they are very,
    very rare,” Erb told the News-Tribune. “And for there to be two cougars
    together in one spot, that would be the first time in Minnesota probably in 75
    years.”

    [ Read Full Post ]
  • November 10, 2008

    Trailcam Photos Lead to Hunter Harassment Charge-5

    by

    Aren’t today’s modern
    digital trail cameras great? Other than their obvious use for identifying game
    and other animals in the field, we’ve heard of them being used for things like
    verifying the existence of mountain lions in Louisiana and Missouri and for
    fingering burglars and other nefarious characters.

    BUP630But this is the first
    time we’ve heard of a trailcam being used to provide evidence for charges in a
    hunter harassment case.

    The Northwest Florida
    Daily News reports today
    that an unnamed Bay County man has been charged with
    hunter harassment and trespassing after a strategically placed trailcam captured digital images of him spraying his
    neighbor’s deer feeder with a substance that turned out to be animal repellant.

    Can you
    say ‘caught in the act?’ 

    The owner of the feeder
    had complained to Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission officers
    that he suspected someone was interfering with his bait site because deer had
    stopped coming in to feed. So he placed a motion-activated camera at the
    location and, sure enough, snapped a shot of his no-good neighbor, with spray
    bottle in hand.

    A
    conservation officer investigating the case said that when confronted with the
    photo evidence, the neighbor admitted spraying the area with animal
    repellant.


    [ Read Full Post ]
  • November 3, 2008

    7-Year-Old to Conservation Officer: ‘Daddy Lied’-1

    by

    An Escambia
    County, Fla. boater stopped by a Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation
    Commission officer for a routine safety equipment inspection found himself
    in an awkward parental predicament this past weekend.

    Asked by the
    officer if he’d been fishing, the unnamed boater replied that he had not;
    instead he was just trying out a new watercraft he had recently purchased.

    FWClogo2007

    When the officer asked if he
    could look in the man’s cooler, the boater’s tale took a sharp twist, according
    to a story in the Northwest Florida News.

    “Oh, I was just kidding.
    Here are four red snapper,” the man allegedly told the officer, explaining that he and
    his accompanying daughter had each caught their two-fish limit.

    That’s when
    the man’s 7-year-old little girl—who obviously knew the difference between
    right and wrong—chimed in.

    “Daddy lied,”
    she politely informed the officer.

    The newspaper
    reports that the man was subsequently cited for two fish over the limit.

    Here
    at the Newshound, we can only assume that instead of having fish for dinner
    that night, Daddy dined on an adult portion of crow.
     

    [ Read Full Post ]
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