President's December Message
The season has arrived and hopefully you are off to a good start.
I'd like to clarify both my viewpoint and the Association's position on a terminology issue. We often hear people refer to trappers as either "recreational" or "hobby" trappers. The fact is, we are neither of the above. Trapping is meant to provide money, food or garments. There is no such thing as a "sport" trapping license. It is a trapping license, period. All too often, anti-trappers or misinformed citizens slip in these titles, whether it be a newspaper interview or testifying at the Board of Game. Using these terms gives them the opportunity to convince the public that trapping is not a necessity, but merely a pastime that should not be given any priority or merit. Do not fall into this habit. Never refer to your trapline as a "hobby" 'line or a "recreational" trapline. Insist that others do likewise. If we don't take the time to correct this now and people hear it enough, somehow it becomes a fact that could end up hurting us all in the end.
Once again, the Alaska Board of Game has put out its tentative meeting dates and proposals. Here is the agenda:
January 11-15, 2013 Southeast Region
Meeting in Sitka
Comment deadline December 28, 2012
February 8-15, 2013 Central/Southwest Region
Meeting in Wasilla
Comment deadline January 25, 2013
March 15-19, 2013 South Central Region
Meeting in Kenai/Soldotna
Comment deadline March 1, 2013
Listed below are the trapping-oriented proposals for the Southeast Region.
Proposal 7: Allow the incidental take of fisher in Unit 1C.
Proposal 15: Prohibit use of motorized terrestrial vehicles by marten trappers in Unit 3.
Proposal 18 & 19: Prohibit snaring bears in Southeast Alaska.
Proposal 20: Prohibit taking of wolves March - November in the Southeast Region.
Proposal 21: Align the trapping season dates for the Southeast Region.
Proposal 22: Lengthen coyote trapping seasons in Unit 1-5.
Proposal 37: Extend the otter trapping season in Unit 4.
Proposal 38: Lengthen the trapping season for marten and mink in Unit 4.
Proposal 39: Lengthen the furbearer trapping season on Chichagof Island, Unit 4.
You can view the entire proposal at Alaska Board of Game. Please become involved in the system! Send your comments prior to December 28, 2012.
Several of these proposals deal with the alignment of start or stop dates for the trapping seasons. We have the same situation here in the Interior. Opening and closing dates for certain species extend beyond the traditional dates. This situation is leading to some confusion. One solution that has been talked about is to have the general trapping seasons for marten, mink, fox, lynx, weasel, wolverine and coyote run November 1 to February 28 or November 15 to March 15 in an attempt to align the seasons more uniformly. Beaver, otter and muskrat would stay at the longer season dates we now have. Wolf would run the same as it is now to April 30th. If you have any comments or concerns about the realignment of the trapping seasons please give me your thoughts. firstname.lastname@example.org 907-488-7517.
Good luck on the 'line. Take a kid trapping!