Hunter Code of Ethics

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Hunter Code of Ethics

Postby duckmann » Mon Dec 13, 2004 8:09 am

Group,

Ok I have a tough one for you all. Was hunting this weekend and had a landowner ask me to move my spread to another location. (It took us about an hour to set-up AND we had no other place to go.) See we were hunting the intertidal flats (totally legal) in front of his million dollar house and apparently his wife was trying to sleep, blah, blah, blah. . .

So, my question is where, as a hunter, do you draw the line about trying to get along with the non-hunter and standing up for your rights to hunt? With more and more land being posted the intertidal seems to be becoming our only option in many hunting locations.

We didn't move and continued to hunt all morning BUT was this the right thing to do?

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Postby Fowler » Mon Dec 13, 2004 10:28 am

I would have done the same thing and stayed put. Where I live there are more and more million dollar homes cropping up all the time. Thats fine if people want to move here and enjoy the beauty we get to see every day. I have no problem with that. What I do have a problem with is people moving here and trying to change it to a prettier version of what they moved from.

Beals Island just had the same problem in regards to lobster fisherman. People that had moved in didn't like the sound of boats starting up at 4 am and they didn't like the smell of bait. The town stood behind the fisherman and actually started putting out pamplets for people to read if they are thinking about moving there. It tells them what downeast life is like in a fishing community.

I try to be considerate of others when I am hunting. Sounds like you were in the right. Obviously you were legal, hunting tidal and more than 100 yards from a dwelling. People have to understand that hunting is more than a passtime for us, it is a way of life and has been that way in Maine for years.

I also can't imagine the sound of shotguns being that loud inside a house when you were far enough away to be legal.

I probably wouldn't go back there and hunt if it was me, (well depends on how the ducks were flying) but I would have stayed put at least for that hunt.
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Postby Dogman » Mon Dec 13, 2004 11:52 am

As long as you are legal that pretty much settles it for me,stay put.
I grew up in Gloucester Mass and in the last 20 or more years people have moved in and built big houses on the water.They all want to live right on the water but don't want anything that might come with it that doesn't fit thier vision of how things should be.Those quaint fishing village images quickly get replaced when they realize that fishing doesn't smell so good.
Same goes for where I live now.There are hay fields all around and now there are more houses being built near them,its only a matter of time before someone wants to stop the farms from spreading thier manure in spring and fall because its doesn't belong in thier neighborhood.
If people don't want to put up with duck hunting and hunters they should move to the desert!
My lab is still the best hunting partner there is.
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Postby DUKHTR » Mon Dec 13, 2004 2:20 pm

I would have stayed too....but since you did not make comment that the landowner was nasty...and I'll assume he was polite....I would break away to chat with him and if he seemed OK, ask him to join me. If this is THE spot in that area, keeping a low profile and good rapport with the area residents is a good idea.

In Great and Little Bays there are areas closed to hunting due to the folks building homes in traditional strategic hunting spots....and then petitioning the state to set boundries.
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Postby redleg hunter » Mon Dec 13, 2004 6:10 pm

DM, THERE HAS BEEN ALOT OF BIG EXPENSIVE HOUSES BUILT OVER THE PAST FEW YEARS WHERE I HUNT ON CASCO BAY. THEY ONLY OWN TO THE HIGH WATER MARK, FROM THERE OUT IS OPEN TERRITORY. AS LONG AS YOUR NOT SHOOTING TOWARDS A HOUSE YOUR FINE. I TOO HAVE BEEN HARASSED BY HOME OWNERS OUT THERE. IF THEY ARE NICE ABOUT IT I MOVE A LITTLE, OR NOT SET UP THERE NEXT WEEK. IF THEY COME OUT WITH ATTITUDE, I MAKE DAMN SURE I SET THERE NEXT WEEK . DONT LIKE IT DONT BUY A HOUSE ON THE WATER. US HUNTERS HAVE RIGHTS TO.
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Postby duckmann » Tue Dec 14, 2004 12:01 pm

Thanks for the replys. . . makes me feel better that we are all basically on the same level.

FYI, We were hunting in the intertidal and as the tide continued to rise we eventually moved to the boat and anchored about 25 yards off shore. House was about 300 yards away minimum . . . well beyond what is considered "legal".

Hunting was so good that we area planning a return trip this weekend. . .even though the home owner said to me that he couldn't IMAGINE what we were shooting at he also said he hadn't seen a duck down there in years. . .

This weekend the tide will be low and we will be about 600 yards away. . . doubt he will walk across 300 yards of mudflats to make a complaint. Will make sure to have everything in order as I am SURE there will be a warden there this weekend!!
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Postby 98ramtough » Tue Dec 14, 2004 12:14 pm

we were in a similar situation one year hunting on the river from a boat. We pulled into this cover and some mallards came swimming right into our decoys, well one of them was a farm mallard but we coudlnt tell.. She came down yelling and screaming we shot her farm duck. Haha, it was HUGE! Game warden had a great laugha bout that one....


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Postby Fowler » Tue Dec 14, 2004 4:06 pm

duckman,

I hope for your sake if it is a federal warden that you have a better experience than I did on opening day of first season. I've never had a problem with a state warden but the federal one I dealt with left a real bad taste in my mouth.
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Do tell, Do tell!!

Postby duckmann » Wed Dec 15, 2004 12:14 pm

Fowler,

You can't just leave us hanging like that! Now you are committed to telling the story!! :)

I have been stopped several times by state wardens and have always been treated well. . . most of them have the personalities of a cold dead duck BUT it probably is how they have to operate. . .

Side note: We were stopped this past year by two state wardens and when we asked them for badges one of them had forgotten his!! I wouldn't let him look in my bag because he didn't show valid ID. . . other warden just laughed at him!! :)

Now, I have heard more stories then I can tell concerning the federal wardens. . . hear they are a bunch of hard asses.

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Postby redleg hunter » Wed Dec 15, 2004 7:27 pm

Hey Duckmann , was that at Merrymeeting you was checked by the wardens last year? And was it opening day?
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Warden Check

Postby duckmann » Thu Dec 16, 2004 7:04 am

RL,

Were stopped last year at Merrymeeting bay by two wardens in a canoe (by the wardens camp landing) but as they were in uniform we didn't bother to ask for badges.

We were stopped over by Sennebec Pond in Union by the two wardens I mentioned in the story. Both nice fellows but neiter were in uniform.

I didn't see one warden this season opener at Merrymeeting Bay. . . can't believe that IFW didn't have a warden posted at both primary landings all morning to check incoming hunters?!?!?

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Postby redleg hunter » Thu Dec 16, 2004 5:26 pm

DM, merrymeeting especially, you cant tell me you can tell the differance between black and mallard at first light on opening day. some of these fools are sky busting any thing.
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Postby Fowler » Mon Dec 20, 2004 5:43 pm

I'll try to keep the warden story brief. We had ckecked our blind 3 weeks prior to opening day. We were going to be hunting wood ducks. While fixinf the blind we founf some cracked corn on the ground. Still don't know to this day who put it there. We asked a state warden about it and he said as long as it is cleaned up 10 days proir to hunting then we would be all set. Needless to say it was cleaned up.

Well a federal warden found out about it and apparently he thought it was the crime of the century. Opening day, my brother and I set and shot our limit of wood ducks. We checked to make sure there wasn't any corn there before hunting. We picked up and started up the bank. Up on the blueberry field, three federal wardens ghosted up off the ground. They had on camo, gillie suits and 2 had AR-15s and the other had a shotgun.

They checked the ducks and our guns. They then proceeded to tell us that the ducks we had shot were illegal and we were hunted a closed pond. I asked about the ten day rule and the bait being cleaned up and one of the wardens went on this long speil about there being more that 10 days to wait yada yada. I asked him how much longer and he told me "well I'm not gonna tell you that" He never told us exactly why the hunt was illegal. The whole time he talked to us like we were 5 years old.

We didn't get any summons but it set wrong with me being told I was hunting illegally and then not being told why.

Anyway, his supervisor ended up coming up to meet with me from Boston because I wrote them telling about the incident. At least I got the satisfaction of knowing he was investigated for his behavior.
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Feds

Postby duckmann » Tue Dec 21, 2004 7:32 am

Fowler,

Thanks for feeding my curiosity! That is one heck of a story!

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