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Author Topic: We just lost the most productive, public duck hunting spot on the Westside  (Read 2247 times)

Offline DOUBLELUNG

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It used to be a common joke among WDFW's wildlife minority that FISH is the real 4-letter F word.
As long as we have the habitat, we can argue forever about who gets to kill what and when.  No habitat = no game.

Offline Man Tracker

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If there is a definitive study that shows restoration works or is working please post it.  I have seen the 1st year studies which do show an increase in use, not an increase in total fish (to my understanding).  DFW has been asked how they will determine success from restoration.  What is the timeframe?  DFW has refused to answer.  It would be much easier to accept restoration and the loss of lands used to produce food for migratory birds as well as hunter opportunity if these questions were answered. 

Part of the anger towards DFW and restoration is the process used.  DFW went thru a long process to learn the pubic's desire on both Leque and the Farmed Island (in the 80's and this year) and then disregard. 


Offline Tbar

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If there is a definitive study that shows restoration works or is working please post it.  I have seen the 1st year studies which do show an increase in use, not an increase in total fish (to my understanding).  DFW has been asked how they will determine success from restoration.  What is the timeframe?  DFW has refused to answer.  It would be much easier to accept restoration and the loss of lands used to produce food for migratory birds as well as hunter opportunity if these questions were answered. 

Part of the anger towards DFW and restoration is the process used.  DFW went thru a long process to learn the pubic's desire on both Leque and the Farmed Island (in the 80's and this year) and then disregard.
Great question! I think you and I know there are few answers. The loss of one of the most iconic and successful waterfowl spots is going to be a tough pill to public lands guys including myself. First question, give me another 2k plus acres as stated in the plan and we can assess efficacy. This was also a clash of titans in terms of legislative mandates, agricultural influence, tribal support, federal agency guidance, interagency support vs waterfowl hunting. Going beyond to your fish numbers comment, again more moving parts that are out of our control, very specifically pinniped management as well as mbta and protection of predatory birds. Restoration as well as augmentation and production of fish create a false carrying capacity for  biologically maxed out predators. This is little more than the tip of the iceberg in this conversation. I will say I still refuse to give up on restoration. Restoration, development and ag are always going to be an extremely difficult mix that waterfowl hunting will not rank high in. Add to this the absolute commercialization of the waterfowl industry and the public land hunter is squeezed to a point of near submission.

Offline Special T

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If there is a definitive study that shows restoration works or is working please post it.  I have seen the 1st year studies which do show an increase in use, not an increase in total fish (to my understanding).  DFW has been asked how they will determine success from restoration.  What is the timeframe?  DFW has refused to answer.  It would be much easier to accept restoration and the loss of lands used to produce food for migratory birds as well as hunter opportunity if these questions were answered. 

Part of the anger towards DFW and restoration is the process used.  DFW went thru a long process to learn the pubic's desire on both Leque and the Farmed Island (in the 80's and this year) and then disregard.
Great question! I think you and I know there are few answers. The loss of one of the most iconic and successful waterfowl spots is going to be a tough pill to public lands guys including myself. First question, give me another 2k plus acres as stated in the plan and we can assess efficacy. This was also a clash of titans in terms of legislative mandates, agricultural influence, tribal support, federal agency guidance, interagency support vs waterfowl hunting. Going beyond to your fish numbers comment, again more moving parts that are out of our control, very specifically pinniped management as well as mbta and protection of predatory birds. Restoration as well as augmentation and production of fish create a false carrying capacity for  biologically maxed out predators. This is little more than the tip of the iceberg in this conversation. I will say I still refuse to give up on restoration. Restoration, development and ag are always going to be an extremely difficult mix that waterfowl hunting will not rank high in. Add to this the absolute commercialization of the waterfowl industry and the public land hunter is squeezed to a point of near submission.

First off I appreciate the fact that you address species that de-predate on salmon. I think many waterfowlers like me want more salmon but are very upset that this state will not address predators. The Washington Waterfowl association has been pushing for returning to a separate bag limit for Mergansers but has been blown off by the department. This state had a separate bag limit in the past (80's) but no longer does. Ive been told that the reason they have not pursued this is because we have high bag limits and the maximum number of hunting days.  The Pacific flyway is THE ONLY flyway without a separate bag bag limit.  I personally feel that sportsmen should pursue this with as many stake holders as possible to change this. I know that a return to separate bag limits can be had, but it will take the efforts of Sportsmen, Tribes, Commercial fisherman and others to make it happen. Pressure has to be brought to bear on Kyle Spragens, to push other states  in the flyway to accept this change. I know that "Concern" for hooded mergansers is the main defense against separate bag limits but if you look at other flyways they separate  red breasted/ common Mergansers from hooded. WDFW paid for a salmon smolt prediation study that showed common/ red breasted affected smolt. cant remember but it was Grant or Chelan country PUD that did it. It showed that late in the season rafts of mergansers had high predation rates on smolts. or  Currently "nobody" shoots mergansers because they don't want to interfere with their bag limit. I personally shoot a bunch of them and if those I take out don't shoot them are never invited back out hunting again.

I think part of what Man Tracker was trying to say is that the Farmed Island working group requested the science of the restoration and how effective it is  and was denied.  Since I was not on that working group I personally cannot speak intelligently  about it. It was however relayed at WWA meetings that the information was requested but not provided.
In archery we have something like the way of the superior man. When the archer misses the center of the target, he turns round and seeks for the cause of his failure in himself. 

Confucius

Online Stein

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WDFWs goal isn’t to recover salmon, it is to get enough acres “restored” to comply with the court decision.  Big difference.


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Offline Tbar

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WDFWs goal isn’t to recover salmon, it is to get enough acres “restored” to comply with the court decision.  Big difference.


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Which court decision? Can you also explain the  "big difference"?
« Last Edit: April 10, 2021, 11:22:56 AM by Tbar »

Offline Bullkllr

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They're trying to do the minimum to stay out of court again. Actually recovering salmon would create endless work.
 :twocents:
"yoogle that on your google"

Offline Special T

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 Highlights.
                                   2016-17, 2017-18

Hooded Merganser  38,316 33,061
Other Mergansers   15,715 15,801

Mississippi Flyway
Hooded Merganser   50,207 47,789
Other Mergansers     12,613 11,140

Central Flyway        2016-17   2017-18
Hooded Merganser 10,474    8,268
Other Mergansers     1,446     3,515

Pacific Flyway
Hooded Merganser  3,740    5,218
Other Merganser     6,111    4,403

USA total 
Hooded Merganser 102,737 94,336
 Other Merganser      35,886 34,859

https://www.fws.gov/birds/surveys-and-data/reports-and-publications/hunting-activity-and-harvest.php

I totaled this summery up a  in Jan 2019. newer data is available but at the time it shows how the pacific flyway harvests significantly less mergansers. I need to look at the newer reports to see if the trend is similar but I will guess it is the same.
In archery we have something like the way of the superior man. When the archer misses the center of the target, he turns round and seeks for the cause of his failure in himself. 

Confucius

Offline Special T

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This is a scanned digitally remade document from a paper copy. I acquired it from the Washington Waterfowl association. It is an interesting read and details many of the facts.

As a side note, as a young hunter I was checked by John Garret once at the headquarters unit. I ran into to him several times after that and he apparently remembered me and in a good lite because he never checked me after the first time. Folks Ive run into either hated him or loved him. I didnt know him but he never gave me any troubles.
In archery we have something like the way of the superior man. When the archer misses the center of the target, he turns round and seeks for the cause of his failure in himself. 

Confucius

Offline LDennis24

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Ducks are everywhere and salmon have a very limited number of areas with suitable habitat. I kind of feel like you guys will do fine finding a new spot to hunt ducks. The salmon don't have that choice. Don't get me wrong, I am 100% with you guys on WDFW being a bunch of dummy's and not having any real method or plan in what they are doing but I for one would like to see more salmon habitat put away and preserved for the future.

 


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