Author Topic: Federation Prez Raps Chaifetz  (Read 4619 times)


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Federation Prez Raps Chaifetz
« on: October 25, 2007, 06:03:59 AM »

10/25/07 - Posted from the Daily Record newsroom
Get facts straight on pheasant hunting
I respond to the Oct. 2 column by Stu Chaifetz. I'm glad he never lets the facts get in the way of a great story line.

First, let's address the pheasant-stocking program that he discussed. The game farm raises 60,000 birds every year and this year is no exception. The program is paid for by the sale of pheasant and quail stamps, and requires no tax dollars to operate. Pheasant is the most popular small-game species recreationally hunted. It is important to note that the total small-game hunting revenue, in which pheasant hunting plays a leading roll, results in nearly $13 million in economic benefits to the state of New Jersey each year.

I have to also ask the question: Is shooting a pheasant for food any different then killing a chicken in a processing plant for food? The method may be different, but the result is the same.

I understand that Chaifetz has been to the pheasant farm on at least one occasion and attempted to get Assemblymen Mike Panter, D-Middlesex, involved. If I remember correctly, the accusations he made at that time were found to be baseless. Did he actually inspect the pens, review the mortality statistics and compare New Jersey's figures with those of other pheasant farms? Fish and Wildlife Director Dave Chanda has always run a tight ship and both the pheasant- and quail-stocking programs are "pay-their-own-way programs," not funded by taxpayer support.

Now I would like to address the bow hunter he referenced. The one who talked about the "gaping, bleeding wound." Several sportsmen have attempted to contact this "hunter," but he is not willing or able to respond. Could this have been written by and placed on an open site by one of Chaifetz' supporters? I have dealt with hunters for the last 30 years and have been a hunter myself for more than 50 years, and this sounds like no responsible hunter I have ever interacted with.

The facts this "hunter" relays seem unusually graphic to me. I happen to be a hunter who has not lost a single animal over the last 10 years. However, in more than 50 years, I have lost animals, but I have never given up without an exhaustive search.

Let's address the Fish and Game Council issue. This council has had a hand in managing wildlife in New Jersey for 60 years. It has always managed the state's resources based on the public trust doctrine -- what is best for all of the people in the state and what is best for the wildlife populations. It was the council that closed the bear season in 1972 to benefit the bear population. It was the council that restored the wild turkey population, our eagle population, the osprey and the peregrine falcon.

In closing, let me say that hunters, saltwater fishermen, freshwater anglers and trappers put more than $4 billion back into the state's economy each year and have between 850,000 and 1,300,000 participating members. This does not include the federal excise taxes we pay on our equipment that goes to support nationwide conservation programs. When Chaifetz and the organizations that support him are capable of this kind of financial support, then they will have a genuine voice rather than a finger-pointing, armchair position. Until that time comes, be thankful that the wildlife of New Jersey is in good hands and is being managed for all of the people of the state, for both present and future generations.

I also would like to thank Chaifetz for his continued interest and support of our organization. I see by our records that he has been a Federation member for several years.

I hope he enjoys his monthly edition of our state federation newspaper and all of the great articles about outdoor activities contained within.

He may want to refer to it when looking for facts in his future publications
« Last Edit: October 27, 2007, 03:38:29 PM by Meadowmucker »