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big drift

Denis Anderson and politics????

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big drift

just what in the heck is going on here, I have heard that Anderson is trying to close waterfowl hunting for at least one season, why?

the lack of birds is not based on hunting numbers, it is based on seasonal changes and local population decline which is caused by damaging wetland resources and lack of landowner education for alternative farming or land management practices.

yes we need to be heard and address issues but boycotting will lead to the removal of hunting practice control from the DNR hands and give it to uninformed or politically motivated private interest and poilitical appointees. Change season dates,limits, and times yes, give up for 1 year or 10 no,

what are our organizations saying in response to this issue. I want more discussion and clarification before this bites us in the (colorful metaphor).

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doser

Did you read his article in the Trib. yesterday? I think your getting the wrong rumor.

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big drift

No i did not read the article that is why I was asking. I am very leery of anything Anderson does. Do ya have a link?

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doser

I don't have the specific link to the article, but if you go to Star Trib.com you may be able to find it. If I get a chance I'll look and post it.

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big drift

My assumptions are all based on recorded clinical data from the US FWS, DU, Delta Waterfowl, Soil and water conservancy, Mn DNR harvest records.

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Ben1022

Step back for a minute and ask yourself if you think MN has a substantial problem w/the numbers of ducks coming thru. If you answer yes, that MN has a problem significant enough to require some drastic change...is sitting out one season too much to ask to begin to restore your passion? I'm not saying the numbers will turn around in one year but hitting retailers, manufacturers etc hard from one state could quite possibly get them on board and take on some of the burden we must bear to restore what MN has to offer. I don't think all the duckhunters and the kings men are going to be able to do it alone. We need big help from those retailers, mfgs. etc who need us, too. Perhaps closing the season isn't really necessary but what are you willing to sacrifice to restore MN's duck hunting? What is too much to ask to get MN back to what it once was?

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duckbill

I don't think closing a season is the answer at all. It is breeding grounds that are hurting.

I think that if you close it for one year a lot of the duck hunters will lose interest. I know that would not happen to the people on this site but there are a lot of duck hunters who only go opening weekend. If you close it they find other things to do. Then there money goes else where. Just my thoughts.

We need to buy up old swamps and low lands and start flooding as much as we can. water = ducks.

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big drift

If and it is a if this is a leverage tactic to use to affect changes in policy then i may be willing to pass on hunting. It still comes down to a united effort, have DU, MWA, Delta, MN DNR, Tribal DNR, special interest all join together to develop a set of goals and steps to accomplish this. Make it happen. lake reclamation, monitoring of minnow ponds, farm mgmt. education, wetland reclamation, tile removal, land practices reform, shoreline control reform,season changes to protect local breeding population and focus on migratory populations, all i see in this rally is a bunch of us yelling and hollering at politicians who are going to say yeah ya got my attention now what do you want? Go ahead and rally but have a plan and remain focus on the goal of building duck populations in our state.

later big drift

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jblabsnduck

I thought I would post this here also.

The MWA BOD has announced the MWA will be taking the role as the lead group to support the Dennis Anderson Duck Rally at the capital and the upcoming meetings to map out a plan of action to improve duck hunting in Minnesota.

For now, the MWA Board has asked the staff to contact all chapter officers and committee members across MN to begin the planning of contacting of MWA members and duck hunters to get ready for the rally.

Begin talking to local elected officials and let thm know the local chapter is behind the rally and will take part.

Future meetings will be hosted by the MWA to lay out a plan of action with all the concerned groups and agencies to start the process of restoring duck hunting in Minnesota.

More to come, info will also be posted on the MWA web site.

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jblabsnduck

Also,

Non MWA members and members that would like to enroll on the MWA "Save MN Duck Hunting" e mail notices should sign up their e mails at the MWA website www.mnwaterfowlassociation.org or e mail directly to:info@mnwaterfowlassociation.org

We will keep you posted on the Rally as well as scheduled up coming meetings with all the groups involved to map out the plan of action.

Please let others know.......Thanks,!!

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Guest

Closing the season would have absolutely ZERO affect on fall flight numbers. The birds that pass through here are not raised here, they only stop here on their way South.

Our problem lies in 1) the lack or depleation of wetlands, and 2) the lack or depletion of food, namely freshwater shrimp, wild celery and others.

Placing areators in lakes that were never meant to have certain species of fish in them, invasive species such as carp and minnow farmers are just a few of the many reasons why the ducks have bypassed this state in growing numbers.

This last season, like the few before has been a product of strange weather patterns rather than lack of birds. If any of you got the chance to see the flight pass through here a week or so after the season closed, you would realize that there is not really a lack of birds.

I'm not sure what Anderson's problem is or his real agenda, but it seems he bases most of his stuff on emotion and false science than actual fact and reasonable occurances. Is he just out to make a name for himself as "The Man Who Saved Waterfowling"? Sometimes I think this is the actual case, and so many people see what is written in the paper as gospel that they buy into his gloom-and-doom schtick.

Is there a real problem? Of course there is, but it needs to start with changing things we have let go on for decades that have ruined our wetlands, not by closing the season.

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doser

I guess I don't recall reading about closing the season in those last two articles. He mentioned that was something Bud Grant wanted to do. I don't think closing the season would do much either. His main point seemed to be exactly what your saying Tom. Changing things that have gone on to long to our wetlands over the years. I know some people aren't big fans of his, but I don't think you can argue he hasn't done some outstanding things for wildlife/conservation in Minnesota. I do believe he is one of the founding fathers of "Pheasants Forever." Correct me if I'm wrong.

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PikeTipper

I think some people are getting the wrong idea about closing the season for a year. The point is not to save a few more ducks but to get the big companies that sell hunting equipment to contribute more money to the cause. If everyone doesn't hunt for a year so they don't buy new equipment then it would really hurt the manufacturers and they would almost be forced to help out.

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swampman

I am not sure what Dennis Andersons motives are either, he may be sincere I dont know, I will agree that he tends to have a sky is falling mentality about him. While I believe it is a wide range of reasons why the duck flight through here has been pretty bad the simplist explanation is the ducks have just continued to migrate farther west where they have it better. All that new water that was created in the dakotas 10 yrs or so ago is going to be hard to compete with. Do we have wetland problems of course but I dont think it as bleak as andersons news article implied. also Tom can you explain to me how the bait industry is at fault its been around for quite awhile.

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Henbanger

As far as I can tell......Nothing will ever be enough for Denniss Anderson. The rally seems ok......but I hate to jump on board with the enemy!

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Guest

Swamp,

The biggest problem with bait farmers is that they are using sloughs and potholes for raising minnows.

The minnows eat all of the shrimp and other insects that ducks use as food. Fathead minnows are THE worst for this. The DNR is also to blame, using sloughs as rearing ponds for gamefish. They have the same affect on the food supply as do minnows.

These are not THE causes of the problem, but only a part of it.

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big drift

Swampman,

The reason there is problems with bair dealers is they stock just about every pond with minnows for fishing, these minnows in turn eat up the fresh water shrimp or scuds which is a main staple for ducks primarily bluebills and divers, it further over oxygenates the water causing a weed growth and rough fish left overs which choke out native duck feeds such as wild celery etc., hope that explains it.

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doser

Henbanger,

Please explain why Dennis is the enemy?

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Guest

Yea, not sure why he'd be the "enemy", I mean, he has done a few good things. Curious to know the answer to that question.....

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LABS4ME

a couple of points... maybe I'm totally crocked but this is the way I see it, and I've been mulling these same points over for years.

1. "The birds that pass here are not raised here..." Yes and No. I've been hunting ducks in this state for 27 years and this is by far the worst I've seen! It's been sliding for at least 10 years now and we just keeping saying "wait till next year", but the truth is it's not just waiting for "the perfect storm" to get birds in this state. When I started hunting at 14 all the way through college we actually had more "local" birds to hunt. It wasn't a 2 day hunt and wait till the migration. We NO LONGER raise enough local birds to support the pressure this state puts on birds. North and South dakota don't sit a round waiting for the migration, they may experience a lull in birds mid-season, but they get plenty of shooting the 1st couple weeks and always a migration. Starting with 'calander migrators' all the way through "the big push".

2. Denis Anderson has a 'sky is falling mentality about him'. Guess what guys the sky is falling. We aren't even remotely close to a harvest in birds in this state compared to even 5 years ago.

3. "all that water created in the Dakotas 10 years ago is going to be hard to compete with..." I have many friends who live in SoDak and another year like the last 2 will equal out a lot of the excess water in that state... yet they WILL continue to see a great migration due to the fact they have TRUE wetlands. The potholes we have are nothing more than stopping points for birds. I quit hunting NoDak, but I've heard from friends that still go there that a lot of the smaller sloughs they have are also drying up... yet they remain the waterfowl mecca.

4. I agree the bait industry carries some of the blame for the state of our remaining wetlands... (so do we fisherman) I also agree that the DNR carries a large portion of that blame... not only in the licensing of the bait dealers to use public waters for the rearing of minnows, but also the use of these same wetlands to rear game fish for stocking. This shows how the money interest will work... Fishing license sales, products, boat industry and resort lobbiests will insure the continuation of rearing game fish for stocking...

5. we have to hit em' where it hurts... if it means giving up a season (especially as poor as this last one) I'm in. If the DNR lost the license revenue, the feds the stamp revenue, the retailers the product and ammo sales, etc etc. you can bet our voices will be heard... I doubt that it will ever happen, but you can be rest assured the dollar will be louder than all our collective voices on the capitol steps!

6. The continued development of our lakes. As all the 'good' lake property has been eaten up over the last century, developers and land owners are all to happy to give those seeking 'their own place up north' a parcel on a marginal shallow water lake. The Dead Lake debacle is a perfect example. But how are you going to tell a land owner that he can not develop his property? No law passed will stand up in court. Do you think the courts will take into account that these are the places where ducks rest on their journey south? Nope... as long as the development fits local zoning ordinances and they are not 'damaging' the lake it will be allowed to proceed.... we plain and simple need areas for these birds to rest and feed unmolested. I've noticed over the last decade the amount of fishing traffic continue to increase in October and November. This traffic has a direct affect on resting birds. As boats and gear continue to improve, guys will stay out pursuing their passion longer, be it hunting or fishing. Only the heartiest of duck hunters were out in November a decade ago, but with the advent of modern clothing and reliable boats the drop off in late season hunters is a fraction of what it used to be.

7. There is no way we will force the wetlands back onto the farm through legislation... I agree education is important to keep the remaining ones intact, but going back to a previous point, the dollar speaks! Make it viable for a farmer to keep or create a wetland and they will do so. with subsidies and crop insurance there is little reason right now not to take the chance on tilling and planting a low area... also drain tiling of a field should not be allowed unless you have a private wetland to 'dump' the surplus water. No more county ditches! Home developments are no longer able to release their excess storm water directly into a lake or river, they now must first go into a series of sediment ponds to reduce the sediment and nutrient load before reaching "public waters". This should hold true for field tiles too.

8. I just recently read at the rate the wetlands are being created/preserved in this state it will take 150 years to get to the point needed to reach the DNR's goals. That is sad... how about a seperate orginization to use 100% of it's proceeds to not aquire wetlands, but to restore private wetlands. I think most of the orginizations out there are busy cost sharing, purchasing the remaining ones, we need to start creating new ones. Maybe this should be the "new" MWA's philosophy?

9. The population models may be accurate as to the quantity of ducks on the flyway, but it means little if they have no reason to come through the state, and as stated previously, we need to not solely rely on migrants, we need to start producing them again.

10. Bag limits are way to liberal. We have no problem chasing all over this state and other states for 2-3 pheasants, but talk off dropping the limit and guys start pissing and moaning saying they are gonna give up the sport. hat is what it is a sport, don't worry about the big piles of dead ducks for photos for posterity, let's get a LONG TERM limit we can live with in place. Something like a daily of 3 ducks, only 1 sallie, one woodie, one pinnie, one can or red head. I think even on the "good" days we will be more selective and choose our shots and birds as to not limit to early.

Enough of my rantings, maybe I'm way off base, but it's how I see the current state of H20fowl in this state. Lock and Load both barrels and refute them.... let's band together and bring back the glory to fowling in this state!

Good Luck!

Ken

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swampman

Lots of ideas and opinions here. My familily was in the bait buis and commercial fishing buis for over 50 yrs it ended with me and it kind of bugs me,got out for personnel reasons but eventually it would have been for financial reasons. If you want someone to point a finger at and it appears some of you do, here I am. I will do my own finger pointing a little later. Big drift you said bait dealers stock just about everypond with minnows,come on you really cant believe that do you. First off to be able to stock a pond you need a hatchery license which the majority of bait dealers dont have. Most bait dealers trap wild native bait. the ponds that are stocked with minnows are done so with sucker minnows and a handful of guys have had luck raising shiners. Fathead minnows arent stocked by the bait guys its not cost effective in relation to catching them wild. I saw the interview awhile back where it was mentioned that the fathead minnow is part of the blame.everyone can agee there used to be more ducks well there used to be a whole lot more water that used to have minnows in them than now. I would like to have someone explain that to me, there used to be way more minnow ponds and lakes and the ducks were thicker too, that is not just a statement but a fact. In the area where I live my dad and I sat down one day and figured 75% of the lakes he trapped over 40 yrs. had been lost as bait producers. The main reasons being illegal fish stocking in marginal waters. This has been going on for quite sometime by that i mean lakes being built on that arent fish lakes. somebody throws a pail of crappies or sunfish in "there" lake and it can change the whole lake system in a short time. Also the dnr's walleye stocking program. bait dealers are not allowed to stock waters for rearing ponds that have public accesses the dnr does. I can think of 3 lakes within 10 minutes of my house that they have done this {they were bait lakes before that}. Ok I know this is turning into a rant . As far as suggestions I think the dnr could cut back on the walleye fingerling operation and go more to a fry stocking operation way more cost effective and no ponds needed.It wont work everywhere but some lakes dont really need to to have a fishable walleye population anyway. The tiling system in the state is a problem not just because of the loss of wetlands but because it alows the migration of fish to some ponds and lakes that wouldnt be otherwise possible.This has also hurt bait populations. Some of the ponds used for raising suckers may have been detrimental to ducks in some ponds but not to the extent many of you seem to believe. The bait guys arent doing anything much different than they have for along time. Except being pushed togeter into less water with bait populations in them.I hope the ducks do come back I used to live for it I still buy my duck stamps everyear. got 2 bags full of blubill decoys that I bought 3 yrs ago that havent seen the water. the there is alot of factors in this all and I dont know how it will all turn out. I think we can all agree that we would like to see the birds again for ourselves and kids. hope everyone has a good holiday season. ps I apolagize for the lack of proper punctuation havent spent much of my life in front of a computer.

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big drift

Swampman,

Yes i do believe the bait fishing industry has gotten way out of hand, with both retail bait shops and out of state export. Especially in the last 10 years lakes that were dead now are minnow or leech harvest areas, this is from my own personal observations, talking with dealers and bait shop owners and DNR. I am trying to agrivate you and that may be not have been the case in your instance however the areas are being utilized for this effort. bait has become big buisness and not just mom and pop operations. the reasoning for focusing on selected minnow rearing areas is just that. an ecosystem that has an unbalancing effect of an introduced species will cause a counter effect the loss of scuds. thereby the loss of ducks etc. i know of at least 11 locations in the last 6 years that have been stocked by bait dealers and the clarity has decreased. this is from rice county to beltrami county. I have friends who have small panfish ponds on their property that have been approached for stocking and also have caught people dumping minnnows in the ponds. I am not advocating the repeal of bait dealers licensing just monitoring and enforcement of existing ones and not rubber stamping permits.

And yes you are correct in that people are stocking ponds with gamefish this also changes the balance of the existing ecosystem. There is no easy answers or one specific cause but we need to all get together and try to fix what we screwed up. I do not want to have to tell my kids what the flights used to look like I want them to see them, just my opinion.

later

big drift

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swampman

As I just wrote on another thread I didnt come on here to start a fight I just thought that maybe I had something valuble to add, when most of your life has been spent on the water. while bait might be big buisness it would for the most part have to be labeled so on a whole. the vast majority are one or two man operations, ours was. in the county where I live there used to be two bait operations for the better part of 30 yrs it went to 5 and is back at 2.I dont know what the statewide number is at now it has fluctuated alot over the years. usually what happens is somebody gets in it doesnt make it and folds after a few years. I know there are more guys operating in the north and west part of the state. Even if you could wave a wand and make the minnows dissapere it doesnt meen your going to have scuds in a pond. there is alot more dissapeering from our waters than just the ducks, frogs for the most part are a thing of the past , in the areas we used to trap salamanders and crayfish are a mere handful of what once lived in the waters. I will agree that it is a large combination of things , I just took exception to some of the statement that were made were very genaric and not very specific. ps unless something has changed drastically the dnr does not rubber stamp pond stocking.

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FOOT

Anyone that thinks closing the waterfowl season for one year is going to help is seriously mistaken. All it will accomplish is to drive more hunters away from waterfowl hunting.

The "damage or pain" a closed season would cause the DNR would be minimal at best and would hurt the resource more then the DNR. Talk about cutting off your nose to spite your face!

When I mentioned the idea to closing the MN season for one year to a couple of friends from Louisana their comments were, go ahead we'd love to have MN close the season, means more ducks for us to shoot.

Plain and simple we are fighting better habitat and water in the Dakota's right now, if it gets dry out there the ducks will come back. They (the Dakota's) have the habitat MN doesn't so the ducks go to the better location. Much the same as you and I would/do when we choose a different home.

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