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chucker34

So What Do You Think About High Fence Hunting?

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chucker34

Uncle Ted says get off your high horse in a recent Field and Stream interview published on his web site. He says hunting is hunting, fence or no fence. And that small-minded people or elitists, paraphrased, are against it. I'm against it so I must be elite. grin.gif

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Gissert

Personally, I am not as fan of it. Just not "my" cup of tea.

There are so many levels to this debate. How big is the enclosure - 10 acres, or several thousand? If you get into these huge ranches that are enclosed, it can probably get to be more of a fair chase situation.

If you start trading cervids and forth between hunting facilities, that could open up a whole new can of worms, ie CWD.

For handicapped folks, I could see where an enclosure hunt might be an only option for them to hunt.

I have hunted game preserve pheasants with my father when he was slowing down in his late 70's. It was about the only way he could get out anymore. It was a good experience to still be able to hunt with him. The true feel of the hunt was dulled somewhat by the fact that you knew the bird were there. It was also a nice way to get a young dog some good experience.

I have a lot of respect for Ted. He has written some good things, and done much for our gun rights. I do find his show entertaining for the most part. If that is how he chooses to hunt, so be it. For me, I just dont think deer running towards your stand when they hear the feeder motor spin would give me any satisfaction at all.

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maros91

Hunting in a high fence is a joke. My opinion.

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Wapiti

should the word "hunting" even be the verb that is used when speaking of enclosures or a pen situation...I personally think that is as far from "hunting" as you can get. In an enclosure situation, most of the time, it should just be called shooting or killing. Hunting is a word that means much more than harvesting or killing an animal! Save the high fence "shooting" for those people that can't "hunt" because of some illness, injury, age, or other misfortune...in that situation, I'm all for it!

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Powerstroke

I do agree that the line here has to be drawn based on the size of an operation. If I've got 5000acres and a fence on the outside, does it really matter? In general I don't hunt areas any bigger than 200acres. I wouldn't know whats happening in the other 160 anyway. Even if you own 40 acres and know it like the back of your hand isn't that the same?

I know there is a stigma with high fence hunting, but if it truly is fair chase, not shooting fish in a barrel, then I don't think it matters.

I think a bigger question is do they get put in the record books? Thats the sticky point of the arguement. Too much to prove and justify.

I say high fence hunts are fine say if over 640 acres (a square mile), but they are NOT allowed as registered trophies like B&C.

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chucker34

Great insight so far. I should clarify that I don't agree with it. But that doesn't mean if its legal and others choose to do it, that I'm going to blast them. That's when I do agree with Ted on being on a high horse, etc.

And I would agree with Ted that high fence hunting can be harder than open range hunting in many cases, especially when the high fence land in question is a huge acreage.

So I guess it comes back to what feels right to you. Fenced in doesn't seem wild or fair chase to me. Nor does "picking out" your trophy beforehand and spending $15,000 on a farm raised trophy.If I had that kind of money, I could go on several world class hunts with outfitters in Canada, etc., instead.

But its not black and gray. Some of these huge acreage places are in that gray area. Especially when there is no gaurantee or selection of trophy beforehand.

One such instance involved a large fenced in ranch I know of in Hawaii. They had a great write-up in Peterson's Bowhunting and I was fortunately in the neighborhood for work travel. I considered hunting sika bucks and does there as it was reasonable (compared to many whitetail hunts) and I was there but in the end decided against because of the fence.

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Powerstroke

I think the term "high-fence" has come to mean anything with an enclosure. Unfortunately as you mention, that includes everything from a large ranch who has a fence, to the guy who bought deer from a breeder, raises them, culls out the poor genetics and charges folks thousands of dollars in trophy fees to hunt the one deer they paid for after checking out its portfolio. That to me is like going to the meat market. I don't care if you shoot it and eat it etc, but just don't go around bragging that you shot a B&C buck.

If I got offered the chance of a lifetime to hunt on one of these great preserves (not the trophy blah blah blah type) I don't know that I would say no.

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chucker34

I hear you powerstroke. I think what turned me off was little things like they talked about how good their staff vet was on their web site in terms of ensuring the health of the herd. I was like, hmmmm, seems more like a pet when you put it that way. But I would definitiely consider a hunt on a huge place with a high fence. I'd just be open and honest about everyone with how I took it and if they didn't like it, well, to heck with em'.

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Boar

Interesting read, Size of the enclosure is a big factor, hundreds or thousands of acres you would'nt even know it's there so I dont' think that would be a problem for me. My family owns 80 acres of river bottom an if we fenced it off stocked it with deer an food plots an harvested only mature bucks an does thats another story. But on ther other hand letting only our elderly an under 16 years of age hunt in that way, I might be able to consider it. There is no way I'd pay money to do so though unless the acreage is big enough so it dosent have the fenced in feeling an a person can feel that sense of fair chase. I guesse if it dosent feel like your in a zoo to walking along with your guide an picking out the animal to shoot from a portfolio then whats the big deal, but I do agree with not allowing trophys into the the books that are harvested in high fenced hunts. The Pursute of Happiness, Freedom of Choice, as long as it's done humainly an by the law then have a good time. Later boar

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Powerstroke

I hear ya boar. My old boss goes Bison hunting every year and brags about riding on the back of a pickup, picking out an animal, discussing cost and then shooting it with a rifle from a fixed rest on the truck. Where's the fun in that? I'm sure its fun to him, but I think its wrong. Kinda like picking your lobster out of the fish tank.

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luckey

It's also not my cup of tea, however, I wouldn't condem anyone for partaking in this hunting style. My biggest concern is transporting animals (who knows where from) and escaping animals contaminating the natural herds. I don't think there is a 100% escape proof fence.

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JDM

Just one opinion, but to me it is "shooting," not hunting. Whatever you want to call it, it is not the same as fair chase hunting. Anyone who thinks it is is kidding themselves.

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BLACKJACK

I think it makes a difference if its 100 acres here in MN or 10,000 acres in Texas or Africa. If its 10,000 acres, you could consider it a free range hunt. The recent issue of Bowhunter talks highly about going to Africa, and those are fenced in hunts, and I'd go in a heartbeat to Africa if asked!!!!

As far as canned hunts go, I think its your freedom of choice if you want to go and hunt behind a fence, I probably won't do it unless the area is huge (+1000 acres). Same with people people who want to have game farms, its their freedom to try and make a living.

Two things aboout preserve hunting that I do disagree with is 1) releasing shooter bucks/elk. That just gives hunters a bad name. 2) There should be lots tighter retrictions on game farms because of the risk they impose on the wild herd, like spreading CWD. Double fences should be mandatory so no nose contact is allowed, and to prevent escapees - you hear about that all the time!!!! Also don't allow wild hogs into MN, almost unpennable and the havoc they can wreck on a landscape is incredible.

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BobT

For me, I would have no interest in going to a preserve where a guide takes me out to where the herd is known to be and lets me shoot the animal of my choice. I can do that at my neighbors pasture of steers when their ready.

On the other hand, no matter where you hunt there is likely some form of fence or other barrier that contains the animals to some degree. I guess I don't buy the CWD or other disease issues when the area is large enough. These problems aren't necessarily caused by the fencing but more by the feeding that preserves probably do to maintain the herd. After all, they want their customers to take home the prize so they'll do unnatural things to help acheive that goal.

Even in SD where pheasant hunting is king, I wonder how many of those birds are naturally hatched on the property. I have some knowledge to suggest that many of those birds aren't even SD hatched and certainly not from the wild. Those ranchers want the repeat business so don't we think they'll take measures to improve the hunt, if you call it that?

Of course, none of this has been substantiated by true evidence but people are people, aren't they?

Bob

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harvey lee

It doesnt bother me at all if someone wants to hunt within a fench of any size. that is there choice. I probably would not do it but thats my choice.

As far as the fence, it should be secure enough to hold all animals within the area to prevent disease.

Some people dont have the extra time or just want to shoot a trophy any way they can and have the money to do it.

I really see no difference in a fenced hunt or a guided open hunt where you know you will get a shot at a real trophy for an added fee.

How about trail timers being used to know exactly what time that buck walks past a certain area? I see no difference between any method making it easier to harvest a deer.

Everyone has to make thier own choice.

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