Archive for the 'Hunting' Category

Tennessee Judges Declare Warrantless Searches on Private Land Unconstitutional

BY Herschel Smith
4 weeks, 1 day ago

Outdoor Life.

A recent court ruling in Tennessee restricts some of the powers that the state’s game wardens have traditionally held when policing hunters and anglers on private land. According to that ruling, which was handed down by a Court of Appeals on Thursday, wildlife officers can no longer enter private property to monitor, look for, or otherwise investigate wildlife crimes without a warrant.

[ … ]

These powers are summarized in a Tennessee law that allows officers with the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency “to go upon any property, outside of buildings, posted or otherwise” in order to enforce wildlife laws.

In its unanimous decision, a panel of three judges determined that the state’s game wardens were taking these powers too far, and that the current statute allowing for warrantless searches on posted private property is unconstitutional as applied by TWRA. The judges even drew comparisons between TWRA’s past actions and the tyrannies colonial Americans were subjected to under British rule.

“The TWRA searches, which it claims are reasonable, bear a marked resemblance to the arbitrary discretionary entries of customs officials more than two centuries ago in colonial Boston,” the judges wrote in their decision. “The TWRA’s contention is a disturbing assertion of power on behalf of the government that stands contrary to the foundations of the search protections against arbitrary governmental intrusions in the American legal tradition, generally, and in Tennessee, specifically.”

The decision stems from a lawsuit filed in Benton County Circuit Court by two Tennessee landowners, Terry Rainwaters and Hunter Hollingsworth …

The defense cites the so-called open fields doctrine, of course.

In defending the agency’s actions, attorneys representing TWRA argued that because so much hunting takes place on private land in Tennessee, officers would be unable to protect the state’s wildlife resources if they couldn’t patrol these lands. They also cited the “Open Fields Doctrine,” a federal precedent set during the Prohibition era …

That’s a great point. The open fields doctrine which comes from Hester v. The U.S., where it was held that these intrusions don’t violate the fourth or fifth amendments.

1. In a prosecution for concealing spirits, admission of testimony of revenue officers as to finding moonshine whiskey in a broken jug and other vessels near the house where the defendant resided and as to suspicious occurrences in that vicinity at the time of their visit, held not violative of the Fourth or Fifth Amendments, even though the witnesses held no warrant and were trespassers on the land, the matters attested being merely acts and disclosures of defendant and his associates outside the house. P. 265 U. S. 58.

2. The protection accorded by the Fourth Amendment to the people in their “persons, houses, papers, and effects,” does not extend to open fields.


This case occurred in the western district of South Carolina.

Isn’t that special? The revenuers wanted to collect money from untaxed liquor, so the Supreme Court held that they can go on a man’s private property.

That is now used as a pretext for game officers invading a man’s property and installing cameras, walking around, or doing essentially whatever they want to.

The main point here isn’t what’s happening to game on the land. The main point is that these powers have been given to game officers and tax collectors. The main question is this: do you want game officers with that much freedom and control over you or anyone else? If so, perhaps we should grant police the power to ignore the constitution in all other cases. After all, what’s the difference between untaxed liquor and game animals and any other thing? Just apply the open fields doctrine to everything, everywhere.

Because money. It belongs to the king. And only the king’s men can hunt the royal forests – or those who pay him. All lands are the royal forests.

Except now in Tennessee, apparently.


Best Backpacking Water Filters of 2024

BY Herschel Smith
2 months, 1 week ago

At Outdoor Life.

The one that caught my attention was the MSR Guardian, which they say is MilSpec (Meets NSF protocol P248 testing standard of the U.S. military), and is one of the larger ones they discuss (and therefore probably not suitable for the backpack).

I have three water filters, each of different sizes. The Guardian allegedly removes viruses, which none of my other filters claims to do.

It’s also not cheap.

You Mean Ammunition Manufacturers Would Lie To Us?

BY Herschel Smith
2 months, 1 week ago

Listen to the end. Concerning ballistics and muzzle velocity, ammunition manufacturers may be doing more truth telling for the precision shooters than hunters, whom they think are goobers and won’t notice.

Now to be clear, some of this would only affect long range hunting, much longer than I do.

However, I may have readers who live in the western states. You may be missing because of bad information from ammo manufacturers. And misses can lead to unethical shots. So, ammunition manufacturers may be enticing to unethical hunting with false advertising.

That’s not cool.

Know your dope. Practice those long shots before you take them on game.

Stop Buying Patagonia And North Face Gear

BY Herschel Smith
3 months ago

We recently covered the ideological downfall of Patagonia (with its Patagonia Holdfast Collective). Some of every dollar they make now goes to DEI efforts, the ridiculous and counterproductive rewilding effort, and other silly things unassociated with simply providing good outdoor gear. Besides, do you really want to support something called the “collective?”

North Face appears to have joined Patagonia, albeit a bit late.

To keep flourishing, retail brands need to invite new customers in, try their wares and build goodwill so that they keep coming back. Discount promotions are a proven way do that.

However, The North Face — a global leader in outdoor gear and ranked No. 1 in U.S. brand awareness in its class, according to Statista — has just launched a limited discount promotion that could knock it off its pedestal.

The North Face is offering a 20% discount certificate to U.K. customers who complete an online diversity, equity and inclusion course entitled “Allyship in the Outdoors.” The discount is redeemable through The North Face website and currently is not available to customers in North America, though they can still take the course.

The North Face designed the hour-long course “to foster a deeper understanding of the unique challenges people of colour face when accessing the outdoors,” it stated. The participation invitation promised to “provide training and resources to help you be a better ally and to make the outdoors a safer and more welcoming place for everyone.”

Some recent graduate of an Ivy League college hired as director of diversity, equity and inclusion dreamed up this genius idea. Hey, let’s not focus on making the very best outdoor apparel we can make, investing all of our dollars into research to stay better than the next company. Let’s focus on something completely different. It will help the company, I promise.

And company COOs, CFOs and CEOs are so stupid and gullible that they believe them. All of the time, in every instance.

I have a better option. When you need to purchase outdoor gear and apparel, go to the hunting companies. I have three suggestions: (1) Badlands, (2) Sitka, and (3) Kuiu.

In addition to being hypocrites (North Face just shut down their only store in downtown San Francisco – how’s that for helping the underprivileged?), they appear to be going the way of L.L. Bean, who once made good outdoor gear and switched over to making regular, ordinary apparel when they got big enough.

The hunting gear and apparel manufacturers, on the other hand, know what’s what. One bad review of a product can send it into the tank. There are so many hunter forums and discussion threads on various topics that you wouldn’t be able to read them all in a lifetime. But the well-visited sites have so much power over the hunting gear and apparel manufacturers that virtual instantaneous changes have been made because of complaints.

Their gear works, or it gets phased out very quickly in favor of something that does. They invest magnificent amounts of money into research of relevant topics. For example, how do we know that deer can’t distinguish between red and orange versus grey? And that they see blue very well, so that all blue threading and dyes must be removed from deer hunting apparel? We know it because Sitka sponsored a student doing a PhD at the University of Georgia to study that very thing.

Their GoreTex fabric works, and you can get one, two or three layer fabric (the three layer being just right for awful conditions). You know those hunting shirts that use silver to do built-in odor management for your hunts? I have several. They really work.

Do you want similar apparel without the camouflage patterns? They all have that too. Do you want backpacks? There are so many that it would take weeks to go through them all – or go to Mystery Ranch and get one, or one of the many makers of tactical packpacks (like TRU-SPEC, Condor, 5.11, etc., etc.). I have a TRU-SPEC and it works great.

You know one cold weather garment that you won’t find that much (if at all) at ordinary outdoor apparel makers? Neck gaiters. It literally changed my hunting when I found the right one.

Do you want really cold weather gear? They all have that sort of thing too. And it works. And they focus on one thing: making better gear than their competitors. That’s all.

Dump North Face and Patagonia. You don’t need them.

Full disclosure: I haven’t been paid a single penny by any hunting gear and apparel manufacturer for saying these things. I have to buy everything with my hard-earned money.



Wisconsin Deer Hunters Beware!

BY Herschel Smith
4 months, 2 weeks ago

They’re trying to take your hunting away from you.  Source.

Earlier this month, a group of Republican lawmakers introduced a bill that would prohibit the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources from allowing any doe hunts in the state’s “Northern Forest Zone,” an area encompassing all or part of 20 counties in the northern part of the Badger State. If passed, Senate Bill 965 would ban whitetail doe hunting in the Northwoods for the next four years.

The bill is a response to a disappointing hunting season in deer camps throughout northern Wisconsin last fall. According to the DNR, hunters tagged just over 28,000 whitetails in the Northern Forest Zone during the 2023 guns season. 10,305 of those were does—down a whopping 27.2 percent from the previous five seasons. The buck total also dropped, by nearly 15 percent, with hunters tagging 17,715 antlered deer.

In a Jan. 17 statement announcing the bill, co-sponsor Rep. Chaz Green, had this to say: “Deer hunting has been a tradition for generations in Northern Wisconsin. But those traditions have been thrown by the wayside because the population of deer has been decreasing for years. We want future generations to enjoy the tradition of hunting in Northern Wisconsin, and this bill is a good start to making that happen.”

Sen. Romaine Quinn, the bill primary co-sponsor, echoed Rep. Green’s thoughts. “This past month, we have heard from hundreds of constituents at multiple listening sessions about the poor deer season this year,” he said. “Although there are many issues we will continue to debate within the hunting community, there is a clear consensus that we must act now to save and improve our deer herd, and this bill is a critical first step.”

Well then. One would think that with this sort of proposed law, they knew a lot of stuff about how many hunters were in the bush, had testimony from DNR wildlife biologists, and on and on we could go.  Someone surely has researched this, right?

Lindsay Thomas Jr. is the Chief Communications Officer for the National Deer Association (NDA). He tells Field & Stream that it’s too early for NDA to take an official stance on the pending legislation.

“We have not had a chance to really dig into the biology side of the question or the nature of the problem in northern Wisconsin, but, in general, we prefer to see issues like this—deer management and deer biology—being handled by professional biologists at state wildlife agencies,” says Thomas. “If you ban doe hunting across an entire region, that removes any flexibility from a management standpoint whatsoever. What we want to know is: What does the [Wisconsin DNR] have to say about this. How would they manage it?”

Nobody knows the answers to those questions because the lawmakers want to “do something, now.” They always do, especially in election years.

Meanwhile, the wolf population is strong.  Hunting was so good that the rewilders managed to put a stop to wolf hunting after a three day season.

Yeah, so there’s that.

Deer Hunter Success Rates Vary By State

BY Herschel Smith
5 months ago


Hunters successfully harvesting at least one deer, 22-23 season.

  • South Carolina: 71 percent
  • Tennessee: 65 percent
  • Texas: 64 percent
  • Mississippi: 61 percent
  • Rhode Island: 61 percent
  • Kansas: 59 percent
  • Georgia: 57 percent
  • Virginia: 57 percent
  • Oklahoma: 56 percent
  • North Dakota: 53 percent
  • Louisiana: 51 percent
  • Michigan: 50 percent
  • West Virginia: 50 percent
  • North Carolina: 47 percent
  • Arkansas: 46 percent
  • Missouri: 44 percent
  • Iowa: 42 percent
  • South Dakota: 42 percent
  • Wyoming: 42 percent
  • Montana: 41 percent
  • Ohio: 41 percent
  • Utah: 41 percent
  • Florida: 40 percent
  • Indiana: 40 percent
  • Nebraska: 40 percent
  • Pennsylvania: 40 percent
  • Arizona: 36 percent
  • Idaho: 35 percent
  • Minnesota: 32 percent
  • Nevada: 31 percent
  • New York: 30 percent
  • Illinois: 29 percent
  • New Mexico: 29 percent
  • Kentucky: 28 percent
  • New Jersey: 28 percent
  • Wisconsin: 27 percent
  • Massachusetts: 24 percent
  • Washington: 23 percent
  • Vermont: 21 percent
  • Connecticut: 19 percent
  • Maine: 19 percent
  • New Hampshire: 18 percent

In case this helps you plan your next deer hunt.

An Anti-Hunting Group is Buying Up Millions of Dollars Worth of Commercial Hunting Permits in Canada

BY Herschel Smith
5 months ago


After two years of fundraising, a Canadian environmental group known as the Rainforest Conservation Coalition has purchased the exclusive rights to guide non-resident hunters in a huge swath of British Columbia’s Great Bear Rainforest. The group won’t be guiding any hunters any time soon though, at least not successfully. Instead, the Rainforest Conservation Coalition purchased the massive outfitting lease—known in Canada as a guiding tenure—as a way to lock non-resident hunters out of the area.

The outfitting lease, situated on the southern end of the Great Bear Rainforest, covers 18,000 square kilometers, or roughly 4.5 million acres. Raincoast purchased the tenure from the estate of a legitimate hunting outfitter who recently passed away …

It reportedly cost the organization $1.92 million to acquire the tenure, which comes with the infrastructure needed to run a successful guiding outfit—like cabins, base lodges, boats, planes, and ATVs. According to Raincoast’s website, they received 700 individual contributions from around the world that allowed them to make the acquisition, including substantial support from a U.S.-based outdoor apparel company.

Scott Ellis is the Executive Director of the Guide Outfitters Association of B.C. He tells F&S that Raincoast’s motives for buying up the hunting tenures is simple: They want to curtail legal hunting activities inside the Great Bear Raniforest. “Raincoast claims not to be an anti hunting organization. But they act like an anti-hunting organization, and they talk like an anti-hunting organization,” Ellis says. “They were behind the closure of the grizzly bear hunt throughout the province in 2017, and they’ve been buying guide territories for 20 years.”

With its recent purchase, Raincoast says it now owns exclusive non-resident guiding rights to six guide territories that comprise 87.5 percent of the 15-million acre Great Bear Rainforest. According to Ellis, B.C.’s 2017 ban on grizzly bear hunting greatly reduced the commercial value of those guide territories in southern B.C. because the area was a popular destination for non-resident grizzly bear hunters. And those foreign hunters made up a substation portion of the guide’s and outfitter’s revenue stream.

In the absence of grizzly hunting, the popularity of bear viewing has skyrocketed in the Great Bear Rainforest. And Raincoast is working to support local companies that run bear viewing outfits for tourists. “They were very strategic in how they showed First Nations communities how best to generate revenue by viewing bears,” Ellis says. “Whereas hunting bears may be difficult, the viewing is much easier. So they’ve built docs and given boats and given training and all that stuff. The money behind the environmental movement here that Raincoast has access to is overwhelming.”

Though Raincoast’s stated mission is to rid southern B.C. of what it calls “commercial trophy hunting”, the group still claims publicly that they are actively guiding hunters on the six large tenures they now own in the Great Bear Rainforest. This is likely because the B.C. government designed the tenure program with hunting in mind—and ostensibly requires that some form of hunting be carried out by the license holder. In fact the B.C. Wildlife Act, a body of laws that govern hunting and fishing activities throughout the province, says that habitat managers can revoke or cancel tenures that aren’t being used for hunting purposes.

When asked by John Streit of 980 CKNW if he’s worried about any of the Raincoast’s tenures being canceled due to non-hunting use, Falconer said: “We do hunt them. We’re not very successful. We have a very fussy clientele. But we do absolutely comply with the Wildlife Act.”

What do they do – carry folks out in boats to throw rocks at them?  This is called not abiding by the spirit of the law, and it’s immoral.

You know who that outdoor apparel company is?  Patagonia.  Specifically, it’s Patagonia Holdfast Collective, which is worth a post all on its own. Don’t buy Patagonia gear. If you want good apparel, buy from hunting outfitters Kuiu, Sitka or Badlands. Or buy from a fishing outfitter like Simms. There are very good outdoor apparel companies, even better, than Patagonia, and they cater to our likes.

As for this notion of “rewilding,” the father of this cult movement, Frans Vera devised his plan to make the Dutch Serengeti, the “New Wilderness.”  How is it going now?  The people hate him.  Thousands of animals have starved.

It follows growing anger in the Netherlands over the slaughter of more than half Oostvaardersplassen’s red deer, Konik horses and Heck cattle because they were starving. After a run of mild winters, the three species numbered 5,230 on the fenced 5,000-hectare reserve. Following a harsher winter, the population is now just 1,850. Around 90% of the dead animals were shot by the Dutch state forestry organisation, which manages the reserve, before they could die of starvation.

[ … ]

But in a drastic “reset”, a special committee convened by the provincial government this week called for a halt to the rewilding principle of allowing “natural processes” to determine herbivore populations. Instead, large herbivore numbers should be capped at 1,500 to stop winter fatalities, the committee said, with new forest and marsh areas created for additional “shelter” for the animals.

Or in other words, allowing trained, knowledgeable wildlife biologists to do their thing and manager herd size, ratios of prey to predator, and those sorts of things, is probably a very good idea.

Animal carcasses and dead trees litter the landscape of Oostvaardersplassen

Don’t be surprised when there are no longer any of the indigenous animals in the Canadian wilderness affected by this stupidity, be it Elk, Caribou, Moose or whatever. Bears are the only thing left. And maybe seeing them kill each other for food will be off-putting for the women, children and effete men visiting for “bear watching.”

In the mean time, hunting is under attack all over America as the eco-Fascists, enviro-kooks, ne’er-do-wells and other idiots take over DNR commissions. It’s this same stupidity which fights forest fires.  Allowing nature to burn from things like lightening strikes causes foliage to be born anew, and the animal kingdom to thrive. I recently hunted Groton Plantation, 20,000 acres. It’s one of the most lively, beautiful, thriving places I’ve ever seen. Of the 20,000 acres, they burn one quarter of it every year, or 5,000 acres. The large trees, or the old growth, isn’t much affected. But the undergrowth that chokes the trees and the dead fall is removed.

This same thing needs to happen to Pisgah National Forest. My hunting experience there was miserable. You can’t even walk there for the one to two feet deep deadfall and the brush, bushes, Rhododendron, vines, briars, and weeds. Old growth is being choked.  It simply needs to be burned, but all over America we keep fighting forest fires in our stupidity. Stop hunting, fight fires. It’s what the cultists do.

Make sure to fight back wherever and whenever you can.

And don’t buy Patagonia apparel.

South Carolina fears non-native tegu lizards could take root and wreak ecological havoc

BY Herschel Smith
5 months, 1 week ago


Wildlife officials are worried that an invasive lizard species causing problems in at least two neighboring states could now be taking root in South Carolina, with 100 reported sightings in less than four years.

The Argentine black and white tegu, already a problem in Florida and Georgia, has the “potential to be a big issue” if the reptile is able to establish itself in the region, Will Dillman, assistant chief of wildlife for the South Carolina Department of Natural Resources, told USA TODAY on Tuesday.

Easy. Turn hunters loose on them. Something else to shoot.

Kathy Hochul Love The Coyotes

BY Herschel Smith
5 months, 3 weeks ago


Although Gov. Kathy Hochul says a bill she signed into law this week won’t “ban hunting or fishing” in New York, it does prohibit what she deems “the wasteful taking of certain wildlife” in the state.

The law takes aim at hunting contests — competitions, tournaments or derbys — that are held for prize or entertainment purposes, making them unlawful. Only hunting contests organized for the targeted management of wildlife populations will be allowed in New York.

A release from the governor’s office notes that animals such as coyotes, crows, squirrels and rabbits are often killed in large numbers as part of these events.

“Protecting wildlife is critical to fostering the integrity and resilience of our environment and our outdoor recreation economy,” Hochul said. “This legislation establishes strong safeguards for our state’s precious wildlife species and protects our important fishing and hunting traditions.”

Precious, even!  Coyotes are precious and the environment won’t be resilient without them!

“Any wildlife killed during these activities become the property of the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation,” the release says.

Oh yes.  You can’t hunt the king’s forests, for they belong to the king. In this case, no one can hunt because the king says so.

Kathy may regret that decision when even more people move out of the state, hunters flee the area never to come back with their money, and Coyotes kill pets galore.

And for any sporting even like a tournament, as long as tags are unaffected, i.e., the culling of the herd remains unchanged because tags are held constant, why would it matter how or when they were harvested as long as it was in-season?

Nice job, dummy. If you still live in NY, I hope you love the Coyotes too! Around these parts we shoot them, but I hear that in New York they’re very sweet.

And if you still live in NY … why?

Scientists Warn American ‘Promotion of Hunting’ Is Ruining the Environment

BY Herschel Smith
6 months, 1 week ago


Scientists have warned that a strong focus on hunting—instead of rewilding key species—is “reinforcing” biodiversity loss.

Parts of the U.S. are currently facing a biodiversity crisis for a variety of reasons including habitat degradation, invasive species, and climate change.

A new study published in the journal BioScience reported that state agencies are taking “the provisioning of hunting opportunities as their top priority.”

“Among species of wildlife, relatively few are hunted. So the focus on hunted species can tend toward the homogenization of wildlife communities, reinforcing the loss of biodiversity,” John A. Vucetich, a distinguished professor of wildlife conservation at Michigan Technological University, who worked on the study, told Newsweek.

“For example, the species of wild mammal with the most biomass on the planet is white-tailed deer. Overabundant deer populations have a negative impact on biodiversity—manifest mainly through over-browsing. The overabundance of deer is importantly a result of efforts to maximize deer abundance for the sake of hunting. Also, for example, considerable effort is devoted to promoting pheasant populations in several states for the sake of hunting, even though pheasants are not even part of these states’ native biodiversity.”

[ … ]

This included the restoration of either extinct or imperiled species …

Let me translate this claptrap for you. Any time you hear the words “climate change” your antennae should go up.

Michael Mann is a shyster and a fake.  I do science and engineering every day of my life, and I don’t have to falsify data to build my models and perform my calculations.  Mann is a complete and total fraud, just like the so-called “science” he purports to support.  Their agenda is population control, and now their agenda is clearly being expanded from population control of mankind to population control of animals because of “biodiversity” and climate change.

Here’s the bottom line.  We all know that wildlife biologists are very good at knowing the population of white tail deer, knowing the proportion of does to bucks, and selling the number of tags necessary to keep the population right and the balance acceptable, or even increase the population just a bit, without creating such a large population that deer starve.

The climate change religionist freaks don’t like that.  Not only do they want you dead and for you to produce no more offspring, they also want white tail deer dead.  Their recipe for that?  Introduce predators such as wolves and shut down the hunters to help maintain a healthy population.

Now do you understand why they want to reintroduce wolves and why they have harassed hunters like they have?  Now do you understand why states have to have hunter harassment laws?  Now do you understand why they hate us?

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