The Croc Hunter Stepped in it...

Shane

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My kids were watching the "Croc Hunter" today, when he and his wife start talking about personally removing this large steel bear trap from the woods of Oregon. I said WHAT!!!!! No shiznit! There they were, talking about how a trapper will (today) watch for bear tracks and place this large (the big Victors and such with teeth) trap on the trail to catch bears. They went on about how they just couldn't believe people were still using them and how it must be stopped..... I about fell over.

It's all around us folks. Watch 'em.

Whatever it's worth, I sent letters to the following addresses:

   letters@discovery.com

   viewer_relations@discovery.com

(Edited by Shane at 4:41 pm on Mar. 18, 2002)
 

paulc

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shane i agree with everything you said.. there was a wolf special on animal planet that i watched the other night that was so slanted it drove me crazy.... they did give some ranchers a little bit of time on the show but even the music in the background was different when it came to the "do gooders" talking about their wolves like family members..

by the way i tried to send emails to both of those email addresses and they were not accepting any mail???
 

Shane

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Hey Paulc - the links must have gotten hosed. Try copy/pasting them directly into your email application "To:" line.

What pisses me off the most is that there is no truth to anything the @$$*%%@@#R$  say or do! For one, you can't legally touch a trapper's traps, and I believe bear trapping has been illegal in the U.S. for damned near 100 years!. I mean, of all the crap to dig up, they chose a bad one.

Like that "Animal Precinct" Come on! Cops for critters? It's like watching a PETA Bonnie and Clyde.

When will our government/State agencies spend the money on public awareness - truth? We need advertising campaigns with growth and comparison statistics. Showing the building blocks and success of our very own management agencies charged with the responsibilities that the activists seem to think belongs to them.
Just the few times I've attempted to educate (starts off as an argument) folks I work with (Seattle corporate office setting) on the true meaning of wildlife management, it actually opens many eyes. They many times feel like they've been lied to all of these years. And they have. The truth isn't that damned blood and guts. We shouldn't be ashamed of our hunting practices. It's a management tool. A very successful one. But there are so many additional benefits to wildlife and habitat conservation that hunting would be overshadowed and seen in it's true form - in perspective.

Hunters feed hundreds of thousands of people each year, wildlife populations are higher than they were (in many cases) when Europeans first settled here,  but we need to ban Bear trapping in Oregon and stop cutting down the trees (on private property mind you) that the yellow peckered barn owl lives in? Assqueeze me!

Thanks for allowing me to vent a little. But we as a community are getting our asses kicked by morons. Managing natural resources is like ranching and farming. And they are (no disrespect meant) by nature, very blue collar academics. As such, they are often times conducted in the shadows with little or no marketing and advertising presence. I feel that this is one of the primary reasons activism is allowed to spawn and thrive. Sure they are idiots, but left untreated (un-challenged) they grow into a nasty fungus. With no one to set the following public straight, they are willing to walk right off the cliff with the enemy. And we get to play by their rules because we lost the vote. That hurts.

Teach those kids. Pass it on.
 

Kickaha

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I must have missed something.  Bear trapping is illegal.  They removed an illegal bear trap.  What's the problem?
 

alanscott

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Not that I am a skeptic or anything, but was the trap planted ahead of time strictly for the sake of the camera?


alanscott
 

Shane

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alanscott - It was an apparent plant. If someone had found a trap, it would have been remove by ODFW long before Croc and his little woman got wind of it.

Kickaha - that is the point. Bear trapping IS illegal. They planted and "removed" a large, steel, ILLEGAL, bear trap. Then pissed and moaned about how this senseless bear trapping needs to be stopped. How it's going on today and how those big nasty teeth dig deep into the animal's flesh.....you get the idea.  This is what I mentioned previously. They don't bother to know the other side (rules and regulations) before they spout off. They just count on the ignorance of the viewing public. As well, under state law, if "Steve-o" (Croc Hunter) removed this trap, he would be cited for tampering with someone elses traps.... He didn't "find" a bear trap. He couldn't find his ass with both hands, in Oregon. His wife has been campaining on the activism front for many years - in Oregon no less. She's been big into trap banning. The apple don't fall too far from the tree.

If I wasn't clear in the primary point of this thread, go to the Animalplanet.com site and look up the show schedule from yesterday and find out when that episode will run again.
Let's not get bogged down in symantics. Their point was clear.
 

Kickaha

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Please, I don't want to start a flame war here, but I just don't see the big deal.  Bear trapping is illegal.  No question there.  They either planted the trap or they didn't.  Either way, it sounds as if they're simply saying people should help stop bear trapping.  Just because bear trapping is illegal doesn't mean it doesn't occur.  If that's all they're saying, I don't see the problem.  I'd even let them slide on planting the trap.  Where's the harm?

Now I expect someone may come back and say that the harm is that they're REALLY trying to get ALL trapping banned.  They're just being sneaky about it.  I have no idea on what the trapping laws are in Oregon or any other part of the US, but I assume some form of trapping is legal somewhere in the US.  Personally I think trapping should be banned -- except for nuisance animals.  It's certainly in nowhere near humane.  

I may have just alienated everyone on this board to the point that they won't tell me the secret hunting spot they were just about to, but I don't care.  This is the 21st century.  It's time the trappers got with the times and figured out another way to accomplish their goals.  
 

spectr17

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Kickaha,

careful what you wish for. The bunny huggers helped get the California yote leg trap ban and now the same bunny huggers are howling that the coyotes are venturing into their neigbhorhoods to grab Muffy and Pookie. Just last week I watched one of these fools on the evening news crying about his family pet. Why they can't get the connection is beyond me. I was hoping the reporter would point out the idiocy of the leg trap ban or ask the whiner why he just didn't get the ban overturned, but it was just a piece of typical emotional fluff.

If you'll let them slide on planting the trap, where do you draw the line on objective reporting? Remember CBS faking the truck gas tank explosions? They were sued over that planting of evidence to further their agenda. Sorry, you lose all credibility when you slant your reporting and resort to planting evidence to fit in with your agenda. Ever hear of the great lynx hair scandal?

You really should educate yourself on trapping , the laws regarding trapping and how trapping effects the environment before trying to debate any trapping issues. To just say flat out trapping is bad and should be banned shows a total lack of understanding  of the issues regarding trapping.
 

paulc

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kickaha, they have been working on us a long time trying to humanize animals.. whether it is disney films, animal planet, discovery channel, animal precint etc etc... where do you think it will end.. with trapping?? end hunting??? end fishing??? maybe an animal rights advocate in the form of an ombudsman in each state, maybe people being prosecuted for killing and eating an animal, go into the peta website some time they dont want you keeping an aquarium with fish in it for crying out loud..  

if the ecosystem will stand it trapping should be allowed.. conservation is crucial and we must give back to the outdoors.

you are not alienating yourself to the rest of the folks on this board, because that is not what this site is all about. you will most likely get alot of folks that want to change your mind and make some better points..  i assume you enjoy the outdoors and fishing/hunting if you are on this board.. all of us wont agree on everything, but, there are some things that sacred to our cause.
 

Bishop

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Hey Kick,
The animal rights movement uses the strategy of divide and conquer.  

They go after mountain lion hunting.  So a lot of hunters say "I don't hunt mountain lions, so what do I care if their protected".
Then they go after trapping.  Again some hunters take the attitude, "so what I don't trap".  
Then they go after bear hunting with dogs, and again some hunters say "I don't hunt with dogs anyway, in fact I think it's not sporting".  
Hunters are not a huge group to start with, but if you divide us into smaller groups like trappers, houndsmen, archers, gun hunters, trophy hunters, the groups get smaller and smaller.  The same people who want to stop trappers from killing animals are the people who want to stop you from shooting animals.    
 

Kickaha

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I’m more than willing to be educated in any aspect of life.  If someone can give specifics of where I’m incorrect and why, I’ll readily admit that I’m wrong and be glad for the correction.  However, I do think my reasoning is sound.  On issues such as this, however, it’s difficult to see another side because we all have a tendency to skip past intermediate points and jump to the conclusion we think another is making.  My post above had very few intermediate points and mostly just the conclusion and so it made that much easier.  My fault.  I’ll try to explain better here.  Please don’t jump ahead.

Point #1: A trapped animal suffers enormously.  I don’t believe anyone can argue against this.

Point #2: There are reasons that certain animal populations, in certain places, need to be controlled.  Setting aside the reasons why the control is needed, I think you could get most people to agree to this.  If they wouldn’t agree to this, they’d likely agree that no control would possibly result in serious imbalances to the eco-system (such people may desire the imbalance and believe nature will correct itself).  

Point #3: If you’re a hunter, you’ve probably been trained or read about not making an animal suffer needlessly.  You’ve read about making clean shots.  A quick kill.  If you’re a decent hunter, you believe this (IMHO).  Please make note of the term needlessly.  I doubt that anyone reading this would think very highly of someone who took a 300-yard shot when they’re only a 100-yard hunter.  I seriously doubt that anyone reading this would approve of anyone doing anything for the sole purpose of making an animal suffer.

Point #4: To the extent that it’s possible when controlling animal populations, the people doing the controlling have the same duties as hunters.  To make sure the animals do not suffer needlessly.  

Point #5: Hunters are often part of the controlling mechanism for animal populations.  Assuming that most hunters follow point #3, this part of the controlling mechanism is already working properly.

Point #6: If there were a method of control that was equal to trapping in all aspects but cause the animal to suffer less than with trapping, people would have a moral duty to use that other method.  I’m not talking about questionable methods or new theories that haven’t been tested.  One such "questionable" method (being nice) is getting all the hogs on a certain island to take birth-control pills so that they can live out a full and happy life.  Again, I’m not talking about this but about a tried-and-true method that everyone agrees would work as well as trapping.  If there was such a method and it was not used, it would cause the animal to suffer needlessly.  

Point #7: Humans have a moral duty to seek out such methods.  

Note that I never said that all trapping should be stopped.  I recognize there are reasons for trapping that cannot currently be solved by other means.  However, I think those doing the trapping have a duty to seek out (or at least be willing to try) the other means.

As to the PETA people and their ilk, I have never bought into the type of argument that says we can’t give an inch lest they take a mile.  I believe that the best course of action is complete honesty.  When a PETA member is interviewed and states that the barbecuing of chickens is the moral equivalent of the gassing of Jews in WWII, nearly everyone thinks they’re nuts (because they are).  Even when they don’t go quite that far but still make outlandish claims, most people can at least sense that they’re probably stretching the truth to help their cause.  The classic counter to this is to do the opposite.  Don’t admit when your side is wrong, support every hunter no matter what brain-dead stunt they pulled, support every trapper no matter what he has done because he’s closer to our side than to their side, make claims that stretch the truth to our favor to counter the stretched claims in the other direction.  I think these tactics are a mistake and do more harm than they do good.  The average person can smell the truth-stretching from both sides.
 

Kickaha

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I've rethought my statement about letting them slide on the planted trap.  That was a stupid statement.  Jessie's points are good ones and I can think of quite a few more times when people have stretched the truth because their ends justifies their means.
 

Kickaha

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Bishop,

I know they use the divide-and conquer method to further their means.  It kind of bothered me to say anything at all because of it.  However, I personally can’t be swayed by such methods and I have hopes that others can’t either.  But I have to be honest with myself first.

Hopefully my post above explains my thoughts a little better.  I’m not saying don’t hunt mountain lions or any other critter.  I’m not saying don’t hunt with dogs.  I’m not saying don’t hunt with rifles from 100 yards because hunting with bows from 20 yards is more sporting (to those who make this argument, I usually come back with, "well, why not hunt that 400 pound boar with a knife from 1 yard if you’re so concerned about fair chase?" )  I’m not even saying don’t trap.  I’m just saying that when you do any of the above, you are taking a life and that you have a responsibility to that life.  
 

Shane

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I find it amazing that (for whatever reason) it is impossible for so many people to grasp the fact that their is a paid group of many thousands of professional scientists and biologists that are supposed to be fully charged with the management of this nations natural resources. Yet Joe public can vote on weather or not to allow certain aspects of this process to take place.

To many of the points made previously, hunting and trapping are means of carrying out the programs set forth by these resource agencies. The harvesting of these resources has also become a sort of world-wide religion. A brotherhood of natualists - Hunters.
I say this because it isn't just about executing to a carfully planned wildlife management agenda. We are born and raised on these natural activities. They are (in most cases) as much a part of us as anything in our lives.

Kickaha -  You've taken a strong stand on this one. Please consider other's positions.
When you start talking about "Humane," you have to open the pandora's box and ask weather you feel slaughter houses, rabbit farms, etc are humane. But, I guess attacking the guy that helps to bring you your Big Mac and Nike sneeks doesn't sound quite as romantic.

Best
 

RIFLEMAN

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As to the "humanity" argument against modern trapping, please note the following regulations intended to mandate humanity:
1.  Steel traps with teeth are banned across the country.
2.  Most states require the jaws of their steel traps to be padded with specially-made rubber pads.
3.  Trapping for species prone to "twist-offs" such as muskrats and beavers must consist of drowning sets.
4.  Most states require checking the sets every 24 hours.
5.  The use of conibear (lethal) traps are legal in many states.

    Trapping is not any less inherently humane when practiced responsibly and legally.
 

Swiss Lad

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I understand the suffering part of the argument.  Being responsible in the field should involve a quick clean dispatch.  Anything less needs addressing.  But whenever killing something is an issue, humane usually takes a back seat.  Some suffering is inevitable that's part and parcel of this way of life.  Yet, I believe there is more honor knowing what it is to pursue and dispatch your prey, rather than go to the store clueless about how that neatly wrapped meat got there (talk about suffering).  Don't you think trappers would want the most efficient methods possible?  Do you think that pain is their goal?  Leg hold traps for some species are the most effective method.  They are the absolute best for coyotes.  The alternative is poison and no one wants to have to resort to that.  Lastly you mentioned reasons for control.  That's what seasons are all about.  Trappers take an enormous load off a area by controlling the preditors.  When was the last time anyone went skunk hunting?  And don't fall into the Professional vs Sport trapper argument either.  A hired gun will kill and dispose but the sport trapper will try to use the fur, urine, glands, and occasionally the meat.  Speaking of, I hope I've given some food for thought.                  
 

Dakota

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Kick,

Don't miss the real point.  The show created an imaginary problem to promote an agenda.  I am certain that bear trapping is not a problem in OR or any other state.  Bear trapping was not common place even when it was legal.  Bear traps are extremely heavy, cumbersome, and an absolute bitch to set one and finally dangerous to humans.  I find this no less underhanded than the lynx hoax.
 

dazco

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Please don't take this the wrong way........i sure don't want to make enemies of anyone here, as i love this forum and am a hunter myself. I don't trap however. First of all, this post is under the assumption that steel jaw type traps are still used for other animals that are legal to take this way. If thats not the case, no need to read any further.

If it IS the case, please take the following question as myself playing devils advocate, as i am really just curious. So here goes.......In just about every forum i've been to i've seen numerous posts where hunters seem very concerned with taking game in a very humane manner. When various calibers and loads are discussed as possible wepons for taking certain game, i see guys getting hot when someone mentions taking an animal with a gun that isn't reliable for putting the animal away quickly. Guys actually get mad at others for even considering for example a .22 for yotes because the animal will likely die a slow death.

Yet if a steel jaw trap is used, isn't that about as inhumane as it gets? It seems very contradictory. Again, i'm just trying to understand something that doesn't make sense to me. I don't like seeing animals suffer myself, but it's none of my business what anyone else does if it's legal. I hold nothing against those who would trap animals this way even tho i personally don't like it. I just want to understand this seemingly contradiction.

Thanks,-Dale
 

Kickaha

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Shane - I apologize for not stating my case clearly.  Our viewpoints are really pretty close.  I've even used some of the same arguments you have to alienate several anti-hunting family members into not talking to me anymore, to get several others to admit to having hypocritical views, and even more into changing their views on hunting.  And they weren't just giving me lip service.  Dazco said it better than I.  And I realize that many think that we need "solidarity" with this issue.  I certainly understand that others feel the need to counter the untruthful tactics of the other side.  Personally, I need to know that my own house is in order and that me (first and foremost) and my side aren't engaging in the same tactics.  To help with that, I imagine that there is no other side to the issue, just my side.  If PETA weren't knocking on my door, would I take the same stand?  If not, I will take a long hard look at my position and the reason I keep it.  But that's just me.  

Rifleman - "Trapping is not any less inherently humane when practiced responsibly and legally."  I agree.  When I say "humane", I'm not stating an absolute but a relative position.  And that is, do it as humanely as practical.  This seems to me to be an entirely reasonable viewpoint.

Dakota - I agree with your post.

Dazco - Thanks for stating it better than I.
 

Swiss Lad

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I apologize maybe I wasn't clear.  I have trapped and have a lot of family that still does.  I'll start off with the basics.  Traps work because other methods are inferior or worthless.  Most of the animals trapped are nocturnal and all are very wary.  You can't use predator calls for opossum.  Can't track a muskrat to it's den.  Your dogs got one heck of a nose to track a beaver under water.  Second, trappers also are supposed to have a code of ethics.  Traps are to be checked every day.  With the newer offset trap jaws the crushing and breaking of legs is mostly a thing of the past.  By the time the trapper checks his sets the next morning the critter is usually laying there confused, just being held by the jaws.  If the animal is unwanted or out of season it can usually be released with brusing and some missing fur being the worst.  Conibears, snares, and box traps also have their place.  Determined of course by the animal, location, season, etc. Lastly, if a better method were available everyone would eventually be using it.  Traps do become more modern but with the first affordable laser guided species identifying tranquilizar catcher that comes along, mine are history.
 

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