North Dakota Ballot Measure 2


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52grain
October 17, 2010, 11:07 AM
Came across this article in the Wall Street Journal

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748704518104575546253717892686.html

The idea of hunting behind a fence doesn't seem very sporting. But I think that if the stock is purchased and raised by private individuals on private land, they should be able to do what they want. And if people are willing to pay $5,000 to $10,000 for a nice trophy, more power to them.

I was wondering what other people on here thought about this.

Mods, sorry if this is off topic or in the wrong forum.

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TexasRifleman
October 17, 2010, 12:51 PM
Yeah gonna move this to the Hunting forum, probably get more interest there.

Leverb66
October 19, 2010, 10:25 AM
TexasRifleman, might be interesed to hear your thoughts. A lot has been made by some individuals that they don't want ND to become TX, where there is very little hunting land that isn't run by high fence operations.

There is a property owners rights question here, but also a question of fair chase for the animal. My thoughts are that we don't need more gov't regulation and that most ND's won't support such operations, so they likely won't make it.

stork
October 19, 2010, 01:29 PM
As a native life long North Dakotan, an avid hunter in many states, and being a part owner in my family's farm, I see this from every single side of the coin. I am concerned about the landowner losing the right to direct the usage of his property, but in order for this post to be a bit shorter I won't address this portion.

I have several relatives who own "Fenced Hunt" ranches. One has creeks, trees and all kinds of cover and enclosed several sections of land. The other was relatively flat with little cover and enclosed less than a section (640 acres=1 square mile). The first actually gave the game a small chance, the later was basically drive out in the pasture and shoot your animal. The first had some similarity to a fair chase hunt, I didn't feel the later did.

I know there are very large ranches (over 10,000 acres) that offer hunts, and as long as feeders are not used, I don't have a problem with those. The area involved is larger than the animals home range and allows the animal multiple avenues of escape and enough cover to evade the hunter.

Would I ever chose a fenced hunt, no. If I ever get to a point where I am unable to put forth the necessary labor to hunt, I will resort to strictly competitive shooting. I don't think this it too far down the road as my knees, hips and 1 ankle have been giving me fits for years.

What really rankles me is knowing that some, not all, of the shooters then go home and brag about their "trophy" when it had all the excitement of shooting a steer for butchering. These are classified as shooters not hunters. I would rather be (and have been) skunked than have to resort to a fenced hunt.

I'm getting off my soapbox now.

wombat13
October 19, 2010, 02:39 PM
I'm definitely on the side of no ban. This is clearly a property-rights issue. If you don't think it is "fair" to hunt farm-raised animals inside a fence, you don't have to patronize the ranches. Furthermore, if people don't like what they're doing with their land, buy it from them. It's not right to ruin a man's livelihood just because you prefer to do something a different way. Show me the negative impact of fenced hunting on other people and I might change my mind.

The article points out the continued decrease in the number of hunters. Our hobby will likely face severe pressure and restriction within my lifetime if the number of hunters continues to decline as it has been. Hunters should be working together and should encourage any safe way of hunting that other find enjoyable.

52grain
October 23, 2010, 09:36 AM
I see this first in as a property rights issue. The romantic idea of the free hunt seems to me like it is someone trying to push their values on someone else. As long as the game is privately raised (meaning not public property), I don't see what business the government has trying to ban it. I am of the opinion that government regulation must serve a compelling public purpose and I just don't see that in this case.

I have seen some of the hunting ranches in Texas and I don't see it as very sporting to set up a feeder in a clearing 25 to 50 yards from a stand, but that's my opinion and it's not my place to force it on someone else.

Art Eatman
October 23, 2010, 10:26 AM
Some interesting bits and pieces sorta lost within all the talk of opinions.

Yes, hunter numbers have been in decline, but more as a percentage of the population rather than in raw numbers--if you look back to 1965.

"Many hunters found they had less time to go on traditional wilderness hunts. With land being eaten up by suburban sprawl, access to hunting lands grew more limited. Hunters also complained that trophies were harder to find on heavily hunted public lands. Private landowners started charging to hunt in their fields and woods."

So there is the impetus for both a decline in our numbers during these last twenty years, and for the rise of "game ranches".

As far as property rights, one thing I've seen--and was subject to--is that the ad valorem tax folks don't care if you turn a profit. For instance, my grandfather in 1939 bought 150 acres which were five miles outside the Austin city limits for $24 per acre. By 1980, the school taxes alone were $35 per acre per year. As an elderly retiree, he could not make over half his income from the land and could not qualify for an agricultural exemption. He therefore sold out to a residential developer--so no deer or turkeys anymore.

This proposed ban is a public statement: "You must make a lesser income because I do not like the way you don't harm me at all."

I don't like much of anything about these big "game ranches". I've hunted free-ranging critters for almost 70 years, and I far and away have preferred walking and stalking to just sitting. But if Sumdood can afford it, he's better off than sitting in his office, dreaming and wishing. If the landowner lives better, I say that's fine by me.

And just to throw out a nasty dig, folks who hunt free-ranging animals on public lands are welfare recipients, hunting on my tax dollars. :D:D:D

52grain
October 23, 2010, 10:45 AM
And just to throw out a nasty dig, folks who hunt free-ranging animals on public lands are welfare recipients, hunting on my tax dollars.

Not if they are buying hunting licenses and paying the associated fees.:)

In Iowa a non-resident antlerless only tag is $228. If they want one with antlers, the tag is $426.

Residents pay significantly less (especially if they hunt on their own land), but they likely pay state taxes one way or another.

FLAvalanche
October 23, 2010, 12:08 PM
Guy builds a high-fence hunting operation. People come from all over the U.S. to hunt his game. They pay outrageous non-resident hunting license fees along with outrageous amounts to the Guy who owns the operation. They also stop in at local stores to pick up last minute things.

Guy has to maintain and upkeep his operation. Guy goes into town spends profit money at local stores to buy feed, fencing material, toilet paper, food, etc.

We all talk about the "Circle of Life" when it comes to hunting and way too many of us forget about the "Circle of Money" said hunting generates for our individual states.

If the people of North Dakota are dumb enough to cut off their nose to spite their face, so be it...Those hunters will just go to Texas or Florida.

outerlimit
November 3, 2010, 01:26 PM
The idea of hunting behind a fence doesn't seem very sporting. But I think that if the stock is purchased and raised by private individuals on private land, they should be able to do what they want. And if people are willing to pay $5,000 to $10,000 for a nice trophy, more power to them.

Money is all that matters nowadays, might as well let people do whatever degenerate things they want to do with their property, as there is no longer ethics in hunting anymore anyways. Animals are slaughtered by the billions every year in factory farms, so what is the big deal.

Legionnaire
November 3, 2010, 04:19 PM
I'm torn on this one. I guess I'd tip in favor of property rights, even though I personally would not choose to hunt on fenced land.

countertop
November 3, 2010, 05:08 PM
It lost.


As far as the broader question of high fence hunting, I'm not sure. I saw a high fence place in NW Texas once. I had no idea what it was until it was explained to me. It certainly wasn't what I thought it was. For one thing, the place was huge - thousands of acres. While the HSUS talking points make it sound like your going out to hunt at the petting zoo, the animals there were very much wild animals. In fact, I didn't see any as we stood on a bluff overlooking most of it. And it included mountains and plains and valleys. You'd be hard pressed to hunt the whole thing - and I left with the feeling that its not unlike going to a state wildlife management area - only that the animals COULDN'T leave if they wanted to (not that they would ever have ranged that far normally).

I'm sure all aren't the same, or as well run, but this place was damn impressive (and apparently the fences went up initially as a means to protect people from hitting elk with their cars in the event that they did leave the property)

Zombiphobia
November 3, 2010, 05:23 PM
Just my opinion. It's a land-owner's right to fence their land and shoot their privately owned animals if they wish, and charge ppl ridiculous amounts of money to pretned to hunt giving them a false sense of accomplishment.

However, hunting isn't hunting unless you're HUNTING. "Hunting" on fenced land, shooting animals that have been basically farm-raised is no different, in my mind, than shooting any other farm animal. It just takes away the entire point of hunting, unless you're only in it for the trophy, which I think most people who would pay so much money are.
Besides, I see it as being unsportsman-like. Might as well just run them down on the highway.
That being said, if I wanted fresh venison and a big set of antlers to mount in my office, I'd pay a rancher to shoot his stock.
But since I enjoy the hunt, and care nothing for trophies as antlers are merely decoration and have practically no nutritional value, I'll just go to the local WMA and track my game the old fasioned way.

I have thought of owning a "Hunt Ranch", since I know they're gold mines, I'm not going to say nobody else can or should not be allowed to do so. After-all, w raise cattle, slaughter them, and ppl pay good money for it. Wy not make a killing on deer, too?

o yeah, as the previous poster stated, some of those places ARE large enough that you actually have to work to find them.

jbkebert
November 3, 2010, 06:14 PM
I once felt the way that many folks here do. I would not hunt a high fenced area. I recentyl went on a bowhunting trip to NW Texas after a few years of my buddies trying to get me to go. This place was far from a petting zoo. We hunted 2500 acres of a 10,000 acre ranch. No interior fences just outer perimeter. Now 10,000 acres is over 11 sq miles of ground. I had a great hunt that was very challenging no disapointment at all. In fact I have already booked next years trip.

These large high fenced ranches offer exotic game animals to hunt. Now south Texas has exotic game auctions like Kansas has cattle auctions. The going rate for a Fallow deer is $2500 bucks. This place I hunted sells a 4 day hunt meals and lodging included for $1100 dollars. These ranchers depend on these animals being able to reproduce on that ranch and yes they will do whatever they can to make conditions favorable. Don't kid yourself that these things are raised in a pen and then tied to a stake for you to shoot. This type of operation I have no problems hunting.

There is a Elk ranch here in NE Kansas that offers high dollar hunts. The whole operation consist of 320 acres most of which is grassland about 20" high. I am sorry but I can cover 320 acres with my .300 win mag without much effort. This type of high fenced hunting I do not agree with nor will I participate in such hunting practices.

The whole point is that yes hunter numbers are down. One reason why among many is that finding a viable place to hunt is becoming scarce. Kansas is 92% privatley owned and only 8% public ground. Out of the 8% public ground 63% is off limits to hunting. So roughly 3-4% of this state is public hunting areas. Farmers are relcutant to give permission not because they are anti's but because they are afraid of possible liability. Americans have become so sue happy with some get rich quick crap that I wouldn't let you hunt on my land either. So where are the die-hard hunters going to go. Well if you don't own ground a high fenced hunting area is a pretty attractive thing.

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