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Go to www.mainehuntingtoday.com and click on the link about the Bear Referendum to get all the latest information concerning it.
 

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update

A citizens advisory panel has rejected the notion of a referendum to ban bear baiting or any other form of bear harvesting. Read the whole store at Maine Hunting Today.
 

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Bear Hunting Ban Update:

Campaign Email Newsletter Issue Number 2
April 2, 2004

A very busy week on the campaign trail, with the Maine Sportsmans Show in Augusta, Legislative Public Hearing, many speaking events and responding to the feedback to our first email newsletter.

We received many phone calls and emails after our first newsletter was emailed last Friday – if we haven’t gotten back to you, please be patient - - we will! Thank you to all of you for your feedback, encouragement and great ideas.

Public Events

Thank you to all our supporters who stopped by our campaign booth at the Augusta Sportsmans Show. Special thanks to the volunteers who manned the booth throughout the weekend. The booth was a huge success, with hundreds of new supporters signed up for our Coalition – and we raised over $5,000! The raffle was won by Tony Pasquale of Freeport. Thank you to the Maine Association of Taxidermists who donated the beautiful deer head mount (by Mark Russell) valued at $400.

Legislative Public Hearing: Skip Trask represented the Conservation Council and presented exceptional testimony before the Committee on Inland Fisheries and Wildlife. Skip is a member of the Campaign’s Advisory Committee, a veteran game warden and was Deputy Commissioner of DIF&W for 12 years.

We encourage you to read the full text of Skip’s testimony which is posted on our website: www.samcef.org, Click on “Bear Referendum Update”, then on “Campaign News”.

Skip’s testimony included legal analysis of the legislation, which we will discuss more in next week’s newsletter. LD 1938, “An Act Prohibiting Certain Bear Hunting Practices” is full of legal problems. Our job is to make sure all voters in Maine realize how poorly this bill is written and the legal consequences if this bill becomes law. We will have the full text of the legislation, which the problems highlighted, on our website soon.

Speakers Training Video

The Coalition is thankful to have dedicated volunteers who are spending many hours speaking to groups around Maine, spreading our messages.

We have more events than we do speakers however - we need more members of our Speakers Bureau to help the campaign. We receive invitations every day to speak around the state. If you would be willing to be a public spokesperson for us, please call the campaign office. We will send you our Speakers Training Video and get you ready to hit the road defending our hunting heritage!

There is no charge for the Video; we do ask that you watch it then mail it back to the campaign office as soon as possible.

Quote of the Week

Dick Goodie of Portland, who testified in favor of the referendum at the Legislative Public Hearing:

“Hunting bears over bait represents greed, profit

and cruelly using animals for entertainment”

Don’t Forget

Don’t forget to save the date of September 18 on your calendar. We hope you will attend, and bring your family, friends, neighbors and co-workers, to our largest fundraising event – it will be at the Augusta Civic Center Saturday evening, September 18. More information to follow. Invitations will be mailed out in the next few weeks.

&&&&&

Thank you for taking the time to read our email newsletter! For updated information, click on our link “Bear Referendum Information” on SAM’s website at www.samcef.org.

Please forward this email to your family, friends, neighbors, co-workers – help spread the word.

Contact us with questions and comments:
Maine’s Fish and Wildlife Conservation Council
205 Church Hill Road
Augusta, Maine 04330
1-888-837-4426 or 623-3749
Edie Leary, Campaign Manager [email protected]
Will Gardiner, Field Director [email protected]


William P. Gardiner
Eaton Peabody
77 Sewall Street, Suite 3000
Augusta, ME 04330-3000
Tel: 207-622-3747
Fax: 207-622-9732
Email: ([email protected])
Web address: (<http://www.eatonpeabody.com>
 

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Thanks for that update on the bear ref. I have been so busy I haven't had the time to update it.
Appreciate it.
 

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Campaign Email Newsletter Issue Number 3

April 9, 2004



This week’s newsletter outlines two legal problems with this referendum question.



William V. Ferdinand, an attorney with Eaton Peabody, researched the proposed referendum law and outlined two legal problems with the bill:



The proposed law is written in such a manner that if implemented, it would be a crime to hunt using even natural bait or agricultural crops to attract bears.


The definition of baiting in the law states: “Bait, including but not limited to, doughnuts and other pastries, grease, meat, fruits, vegetables, honey and any other food known to be attractive to bear, may not be used to hunt or attract bear.”



What’s missing from this definition are the exemptions which are in the deer baiting statute. The prohibition of baiting of deer has the following exemptions: hunting from an observation stand or blind overlooking (1) standing crops (2) foods that are left as a result of normal agricultural operations or as a result of a natural occurrence; or (3) bear bait that is placed at a bear hunting stand or blind.



Without those exemptions, the proposed bear baiting ban INCLUDES naturally occurring bait and agricultural crops. In essence what this means, is that this law would shut down all means to “hunt or attract bear.” Their true agenda is revealed.



In Skip Trask’s testimony at last week’s Legislative Public Hearing, he articulated that “we are currently allowed to hunt and/or trap for 13 species of predators, including bear, and are allowed to place bait to attract every one of them. Even so, some sportsmen and women don’t personally support the idea of hunting bear with the use of bait, yet these same people are not opposed to bear hunting at locations where the animals feed on natural foods. LD 1938 (the referendum question) would make both of these activities a crime.



The proposed law only allows state or federal officials to deal with nuisance bears.


The proposed law prohibits bear baiting, hunting with dogs and trapping with these exceptions only (1) state and federal employees acting in official capacity to attract a specific offending bear to protect livestock, domestic animals, threatened or endangered wildlife public or private property or public safety; (2) scientific or research purposes, without killing the bear (3) timberland owners using feeding stations to prevent damage to timberland without killing the bear.



Studies show that nuisance complaints and human/bear encounters will increase without our three traditional methods of hunting bear. We only have to look as far as New York, New Jersey and Massachusetts for that data.



With only state and federal employees allowed to deal with nuisance bears, how quickly will those calls be answered? Who will pay for the expense of dealing with the nuisance bears? Maine’s DIF&W does not have the manpower or resources. Crops, beehives, private property the list goes on -- who will be there to help? Local municipal animal control officers? Will the towns have to pick up that tab?





Quote of the Week



Bill Randall of Winthrop, lead spokesperson for the referendum proponents, in an interview with a Camden reporter:



As for the Humane Society (of the United States), Randall did have some concerns. “They want to abolish recreational hunting,” he said. “I didn’t think they would go that far.”





&&&&&





Thank you for taking the time to read our email newsletter! For updated information, click on our link “Bear Referendum Information” on SAM’s website at www.samcef.org.



Please forward this email to your family, friends, neighbors, co-workers – help spread the word.



Contact us with questions and comments:

Maine’s Fish and Wildlife Conservation Council

205 Church Hill Road

Augusta, Maine 04330

1-888-837-4426 or 623-3749

Edie Leary, Campaign Manager [email protected]

Will Gardiner, Field Director [email protected]
 

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Thanks again! Looks like some people are finding out they weren't completely informed about what they were supporting. Hmmm!
 

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Campaign Email Newsletter Issue Number 4
April 16, 2004

Momentum keeps building along the campaign trail. Thank you to all of you who are out in the trenches carrying the message of how bad this referendum question is.

PAC Reports Filed with State Ethics Commission

Let’s look at the latest financial filings of the two sides of the anti-hunting referendum:

Opponents – thanks to the outpouring of financial support, our two PAC reports (Conservation Council and SAM PAC) showed:

Donations received as of March 31: $472,973.33 63 percent in-state
Number of donors as of March 31: 4,733 65 percent in-state

Proponents – Maine Citizens for Fair Bear Hunting:

Donations received as of March 31: $330,788.00 91 percent out of state
Number of donors: 30 individual donors listed on this report

Proponents – Hunters for Fair Bear Hunting:

Donations received as of March 31: $3,433.30
Number of donors: 6 donors were listed on their report.

These reports clearly demonstrate:

1. The proponents have little financial support inside the state of Maine. 91 percent of their funding comes from out of state – either from HSUS or Fund for Animals. Their PAC report also showed that HSUS continues to send staff to Maine to consult on their campaign.

2. Despite their lack of support in Maine, the proponents can pick up the phone anytime and HSUS or Fund for Animals will cut them a huge check. In this past reporting period, HSUS donated another $93,000 (out of $103,000) to Maine Citizens for Fair Bear Hunting.

3. We must continue our fundraising efforts – and the majority of our monies are safely put aside to pay for our media campaign – as we must continue to combat the deep pockets of HSUS and Fund for Animals.

Facts on Bear Population Growth if this Referendum Passes

**A 1999 black bear assessment, written by bear biologist Craig McLaughlin, said the population in the absence of hunting would result in the doubling of the population in five years.

**Since bear hunting over bait and with dogs was banned in Massachusetts by way of ballot initiative in the mid-1990’s, the bear population has doubled.

**Since baiting has been banned in New York, the bear population has grown out of control. Bear have become serious problems in some neighborhoods; in one incident, a bear took a small child from a stroller and killed him, just 70 miles from New York City.

**New Jersey held its first bear hunt in 33 years last year in an attempt to deal with a bear population that has grown out of control. The New Jersey bear population has grown from 100 bears to around 2,500, and last summer three people were mauled by bears. New Jersey state officials reported 1,400 bear nuisance complaints last year and 58 of those complaints involved bears that had been inside peoples’ homes.

Further research is being conducted on this issue – we will keep you updated!

Quote of the Week

Article by Misty Edgecomb, reporter for the Bangor Daily News, April 16, 2004:

Members of the Maine Chapter of the Wildlife Society, a group composed primarily of professional scientists, voted Thursday to oppose the bear referendum this fall. Echoing similar arguments made by the Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife and the Audubon Society, the group found no biological reason to ban trapping bear and hunting bear over bait and with dogs.”

Special thanks to Skip Trask, who represented the Conservation Council at this meeting, with Will Gardiner attending from the campaign.

&&&&&

Thank you for taking the time to read our email newsletter! For updated information, click on our link “Bear Referendum Information” on SAM’s website at www.samcef.org.

Please forward this email to your family, friends, neighbors, co-workers – help spread the word.
Contact us with questions and comments:
Maine’s Fish and Wildlife Conservation Council
205 Church Hill Road
Augusta, Maine 04330
1-888-837-4426 or 623-3749
Edie Leary, Campaign Manager [email protected]
Will Gardiner, Field Director [email protected]
 

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Here is this weeks update.

From the woods of Maine,
Mark

Maine’s Fish and Wildlife Conservation Council

Fight for Maine’s Hunting Heritage

205 Church Hill Road Augusta, Maine 04330

1-888-837-4426





Campaign E-mail Newsletter Issue Number 5
April 23, 2004



A huge thank you this week to organizations which continue to raise money to help save Maine’s bear hunt.

Recent banquets of the Maine Professional Guides Association, Maine Bowhunters Association and the Aroostook County Chapter of MFWCC were amazing successes – wonderful attendance, successful raffles and auctions and a demonstration of true commitment to the campaign. Thank you to all who made those events such high points of the campaign!

If we are going to be able to fight against the deep pockets of the national animal rights groups (HSUS and Fund for Animals in particular), having the support of groups such as MPGA, MBA and the wonderful Aroostook County Coalition are critical to our success.

It’s Not the Bears Fault

No wonder New Jersey is having more and more problems with their bear population since baiting and trapping were banned -- we were sent this article from New Jersey, from The Trenton Times, on April 9, 2004:

“After a hungry bear awakening from hibernation killed five goats and a pet rabbit in Warren County, having scaled a five-foot fence to reach one of the goats, Lynda Smith of the Bear Education and Resource Group, which opposes state-sanctioned bear hunts, said the owners of the livestock were at fault. “If you are not going to protect your animals, you can’t blame a bear for being a bear”, she told The Star-Ledger. “The bears are just coming out of their dens now. They are very hungry. They need to put on weight.”

More Organizations Vote to Oppose the Anti-Hunting Referendum

Welcome to the latest groups who have joined our Coalition:

The Maine State Troopers Association
Millinocket Fin and Feather Club



Maine Chapter of The Wildlife Society Announces Opposition to the Bear Referendum

April 15: After hearing presentations from both sides of the referendum and from evidence presented by wildlife biologists from Maine, Massachusetts and New Hampshire, the Maine Chapter of The Wildlife Society voted to officially oppose the bear referendum.

“The Referendum subverts the species planning process that has been successfully used to balance scientific management and societal goals for 25 years,” the Society’s position statement reads.

Scientists agreed that while baiting does not harm the bear population, many feared that a lack of baiting could result in a booming population that the state would be ill equipped to manage.”

Quote of the Week

Letter to the Editor in last week’s Kennebec Journal, sent in by referendum supporter Ryan Fleury of Winthrop:

On the topic of bear baiting, Mr. Fleury writes, “Bears instinctively eat the food and are often ambushed by enthused hunters…

“When you vote on November 2, remember to consider the bears’ perspective. They deserve respect, just like all other animals.”

&&&&&

Thank you for taking the time to read our email newsletter! For updated information, click on our link “Bear Referendum Information” on SAM’s website at www.samcef.org.

Please forward this email to your family, friends, neighbors, co-workers – help spread the word.
Contact us with questions and comments:
Maine’s Fish and Wildlife Conservation Council
205 Church Hill Road
Augusta, Maine 04330
1-888-837-4426 or 623-3749
Edie Leary, Campaign Manager [email protected]
Will Gardiner, Field Director [email protected]
 

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Campaign Email Newsletter Issue Number 6
April 30, 2004

Television Ads Sending Out Important Messages

Prior to the campaign’s statewide fall television and radio campaign, we are solidifying our messages and our base of support within the outdoor community by showcasing factual and informational television ads produced by URSUS in Waterville.

Tenley Meara, a Maine Master Guide from Brunswick and Ron Cooper, a Maine Game Warden from York County are the spokespersons in our first ads. Tenley discusses the out of state influences pushing this referendum onto the people of the state of Maine; Ron points out what a good job DIF&W does in controlling our bear population at about a 23,000 bear level, and how Maine needs the traditional methods of hunting to maintain that control.

The ads are currently showing on Northeast Journal, Maine Outdoorsman and Wildfire.

Special thanks to Andy Collar of URSUS Productions for his talents in putting the ads together.

Shortly, the ads will also begin airing on Northwoods Sporting Journal and Woods n’ Waters. Special thanks to Paul Reynolds and Maynard Stanley for those efforts.

Volunteers Needed: First Organizational Meeting for our September 18 Banquet

We have told you about our Extraordinary Banquet which will be Maine’s largest fundraising event – September 18 at the Augusta Civic Center. This will be a HUGE event for our campaign and all monies raised will go directly to our statewide fall television advertising.

The evening will include a reception, silent and live auctions, a terrific dinner, raffle, comedians, celebrities and guest speakers. It will be a wonderful opportunity to celebrate Maine’s outdoor heritage.

Our first campaign meeting to begin working on the details of the Banquet will be on May 10th – anyone who would like to help work on this crucial event – please join us at our meeting!

Monday, May 10, 6:00 PM – 8:00 PM, Monmouth Fish and Game Club, Route 202 in Monmouth. Refreshments will be served.

There will be plenty of work for everyone – we will be forming special committees and working with all volunteers to make sure all tasks are appropriately assigned.

If you would like to attend the May 10th meeting, please call 1-888-837-4426 or email Edie Leary at [email protected] to RSVP. Thank you very much and we hope to see you on the 10th!

Quote of the Week

Remember last week we told you how one of the proponents, Ryan Fleury of Winthrop, stated “when you vote on November 2, remember to consider the bears’ perspective.” (That leads to the question of what will be on next year’s ballot – giving bears the right to vote??)

Now, this week, another anti-hunting referendum proponent, Cindy Lowry of Hallowell, “a long-time environmentalist and Humane Society activist”, according to the Portland Phoenix, stated her thoughts on baiting:

“…I find the Governor’s use of the wildlife department to oppose the referendum galling. This is not what a state agency should be doing…here’s a wildlife agency supporting feeding bears! It’s neanderthal management of wildlife.”

&&&&&

Thank you for taking the time to read our email newsletter! For updated information, click on our link “Bear Referendum Information” on SAM’s website at www.samcef.org.

Please forward this email to your family, friends, neighbors, co-workers – help spread the word.
Contact us with questions and comments:
Maine’s Fish and Wildlife Conservation Council
205 Church Hill Road
Augusta, Maine 04330
1-888-837-4426 or 623-3749
Edie Leary, Campaign Manager [email protected]
Will Gardiner, Field Director [email protected]
 

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Campaign Email Newsletter Issue Number 7
May 7, 2004

Tickets For September 18 Campaign Banquet Now Available on Line

We will be mailing out announcements and invitations to our fundraising banquet “Extravaganza!” in the next few weeks. For those of you who want to get ahead of the pack, you can order your tickets on line. Go to the SAM website www.samcef.org, click on “Bear Referendum Information”, then on the ticket order link. Reserve your tickets now – they will go fast!! September 18 – Augusta Civic Center – a wonderful evening celebrating Maine’s outdoor heritage.

Getting the Message Out During Election Season

Now that the Legislative session is over (well, kind of) more attention will be paid to what is coming up on the June and November ballots. It is critical that we all remind our Legislators and candidates for legislative office on the importance of the anti-hunting referendum and how we need their help as they go door-to-door to spread the message of how horrible this question is.

It is an issue that crosses party lines – it is an issue that has dire implications for our state – it is a question which must be defeated. Remind them of the strong opposition to the question from our Governor and our Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife. As Governor Baldacci has stated,

Governor John Baldacci’s Statement

“In November 2004, this state will also face a very unique referendum concerning bear hunting. Groups, funded by out of state organizations committed to ending hunting, are backing a referendum that would make it illegal to hunt bear with dogs, to hunt bears with bait or to trap bears. They believe they know better than the State’s biologists and animal management professionals how Maine should manage our wildlife resources. They have gotten out early to tell their story to Maine voters. We need to tell our story.

Here are the facts. The Department’s biologists have been studying Maine’s bear population for more than two decades, a research project unequaled by any other state in the country. We know that the bear population is increasing in Maine. These scientists know best how to care for and manage the bear population, and a limited hunting season for bear is one of those tools. Bear hunting has allowed us to control the growth of the bear population so the population pressure doesn’t force bears into areas with high human populations. I oppose the referendum in part because it would take away the tools these scientists need to do their jobs as resource managers.

IF&W and I are opposed to this referendum for an additional reason. The loss of these forms of bear hunting will economically impact not only the department, but also hundreds of guides and businesses throughout Maine that cater to all types of hunters from August through December. Many of these people and businesses are located in parts of the state where there isn’t as much economic activity as we would like to see. The jobs provided by bear hunting are important to the communities in these areas, and we need to do what we can to preserve them.”

Reminder: First Organizational Meeting for our September 18 Banquet

The response to our May 10th meeting, to get the ball rolling for our Sept. 18 Banquet, has been terrific – thank you! We still have room, however, if other volunteers would like to attend:

Monday, May 10, 6:00 PM – 8:00 PM, Monmouth Fish and Game Club, Route 202 in Monmouth. Refreshments will be served.

If you would like to attend the May 10th meeting, please call 1-888-837-4426 or email Edie Leary at [email protected] to RSVP.

Quote of the Week

91 percent of the funding for this referendum question comes from two sources – HSUS (Humane Society of the United States) and Fund for Animals. They are the two leading national animal rights groups pushing their anti-hunting agendas in states throughout the country.

HSUS Spokesperson Nicholas Braden stated to the Associated Press in Toronto just last month:

“The group (HSUS) is opposed to any hunting of wildlife for commercial purposes and also opposes hunting for sports and recreation.”

&&&&&

Thank you for taking the time to read our email newsletter! For updated information, click on our link “Bear Referendum Information” on SAM’s website at www.samcef.org.

Please forward this email to your family, friends, neighbors, co-workers – help spread the word.
Contact us with questions and comments:
Maine’s Fish and Wildlife Conservation Council
205 Church Hill Road
Augusta, Maine 04330
1-888-837-4426 or 623-3749
Edie Leary, Campaign Manager [email protected]
Will Gardiner, Field Director [email protected]

William P. Gardiner
Eaton Peabody
77 Sewall Street, Suite 3000
Augusta, ME 04330-3000
Tel: 207-622-3747
Fax: 207-622-9732
Email: ([email protected])
Web address: (<http://www.eatonpeabody.com>)
 

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Here is this weeks bear ban update. Thanks for all the support we have been receiving from across the country.

From the woods of Maine,
Mark Luce
www.hindsite-deer.com



Campaign Email Newsletter Issue Number 8
May 14, 2004

Bridgton Warned of Hungry Bears On The Prowl

…that was the headline last week in the Portland Press Herald. The article about marauding bears in downtown Bridgton also made other newspapers around the state. The story is also being considered by People Magazine, which contacted officials in Bridgton this week.

Bridgton Animal Control Officer Jack Knight states that his nuisance calls (over 400 last year) are starting to escalate again. Officer Knight shared his thoughts with our Campaign Manager Edie Leary and stated, “if they think this is bad, wait until they see what happens if this referendum passes.”

One bear in particular caused Stevens Brook Elementary School in Bridgton to hold recess indoors and the school canceled baseball practice “after a bear made its way up Main Street.”

Also reported in the article about bears in the Bridgton area: “In one incident last week, three people from Massachusetts were camping along the Saco River and decided to cook bacon at 10:30 PM. They ducked inside the tent and within minutes a bear had arrived, tipped over the pan of bacon and proceeded to eat everything in their cooler. It scared the daylights out of them…they ran up to Route 302 and called for help.”

This speaks to the issue of how this referendum will affect Maine’s tourism industry. How willing will tourists be to come to Maine if stories like these proliferate?

IAMS Company Breaks Ties with HSUS

HSUS, the chief financier for the referendum proponents, has shown its true agenda enough to make IAMS sever their business relationship. The IAMS Company has stopped donating to HSUS causes, based on feedback they received from dog owners.

In a press release, IAMS stated, “We appreciate all of the direct feedback we have received from the dog community…We are definitely pro-dog and clearly not anti-hunting. We look forward to continuing our long history of support of the sporting dog community and leadership in the industry with innovative research to improve the health and well being of athletic dogs.”

If you would like to contact IAMS and thank them for withdrawing their support based on HSUS’ anti-hunting record, you can leave a message of support at 1-800-525-4267.



Help Us Bring 212 More Donors On Board

Exciting news continues to flow in the campaign office. Our coalition opposing the anti-hunting referendum now totals 5,788 donors – THANKS TO ALL OF YOU. Our base of support grows every day.

We have set a goal of getting to 6,000 donors by the end of this month. The next PAC finance reports are due May 27. We need 212 new donors to reach our goal.

Please help us solicit donations from people who have not yet given. So many of you have contributed not just once, but many times and for that we are very grateful. Help us get 212 new names by May 27! Checks can be made payable to MFWCC and mailed to: Maine’s Fish and Wildlife Conservation Council 205 Church Hill Road Augusta, Maine 04330. Or click on the SAM website, www.samcef.org, and pay online using a credit card.

Please help us reach our goal by May 27.

Bear Meat Needed!

For the campaign’s September 18 Banquet, campaign supporter and volunteer Gerry Lavigne has offered to make bear salami for appetizers at each table. Thank you Gerry – yum!!

We will need 250 lbs. of bear meat around the first of September. If you have bear meat you can donate, please call Will Gardiner at the campaign office 1-888-837-4426 and Will can give you more details.

We all know that bear meat is DELICIOUS – let’s hope we can all share some at the Banquet.

Beware of Computer Virus

A campaign supporter contacted our campaign office to report that someone is sending around an email with the address of “[email protected]”. The email has a virus in it. Please be wary if you receive emails from that address.

Quote of the Week

In a recent letter to the editor in the Kennebec Journal, a referendum proponent wrote,

“In bear baiting, the guide seduces an innocent bear with the same junk food that makes us fat and lazy.”

&&&&&

Thank you for taking the time to read our email newsletter! For updated information, and to order tickets to the September 18 Banquet, click on our link “Bear Referendum Information” on SAM’s website at www.samcef.org.
Please forward this email to your family, friends, neighbors, co-workers – help spread the word.
Contact us with questions and comments:
Maine’s Fish and Wildlife Conservation Council
205 Church Hill Road
Augusta, Maine 04330
1-888-837-4426 or 623-3749
Edie Leary, Campaign Manager [email protected]
Will Gardiner, Field Director [email protected]
 

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Thanks again for the updates. I for one sure enjoy reading about what's going on with the commission.
 

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Campaign Email Newsletter Issue Number 9
May 21, 2004



Last week – bears in Bridgton. This week – a big bear in South Portland.

This one had to be shot, however. Early in the morning on May 17, South Portland police began receiving calls about a black bear roaming the streets, cutting across peoples’ back yards, climbing fences, and generally causing a lot of panic. A South Portland police officer finally had to shoot the bear due to concerns for public safety, as it was getting time for children to begin walking to school. The bear weighed 278 lbs and it took several shots to bring it down.

When a reporter asked Campaign Manager Edie Leary if this incident in South Portland demonstrated the need to maintain the current methods we have of controlling Maine’s bear population – baiting, trapping and hunting with hounds, Edie replied, “I couldn’t have said it better myself.”

Hopefully people in southern Maine will now begin to understand that there certainly are bears in Cumberland and York Counties, and these types of nuisance calls will increase if this referendum passes. The South Portland incident also speaks to the fact that Maine does not have the resources to respond to an increase in calls. Wardens could not get to the South Portland area in time before local police decided the bear caused a threat to the public.

While not wanting to politicize this incident, we do want to continue using it as an example of why Maine must keep the traditional methods of bear hunting. Bears are dangerous. And there will be more bear-human encounters if this referendum passes.

…but the story doesn’t end there. Reporters have been calling our campaign office after proponents of the referendum, Bob Fisk and Cecil Gray, have contacted the press alleging that there is a “distinct possibility” that this bear was drugged in the wild then planted in South Portland, in order to benefit the campaign.

Edie Leary told one reporter this morning that the South Portland incident is not an isolated one – look what has happened the past two weeks in Bridgton, South Berwick and all over York County. Edie directed reporters to DIF&W so “the experts who deal with bears every day can explain why bears are showing up in our urban areas.” Edie also added, “I don’t know of any one involved in this campaign or involved in Maine’s outdoor heritage who would put people in harms’ way for political purposes – to even hint at that is absolutely ridiculous. Bears are dangerous animals and the proponents need to stick to the facts about this referendum – not make up false rumors or innuendos.”



Message from URSUS Productions – thank you to Northeast Journal for featuring bear hunting issues

Next week’s Northeast Journal will feature Jennifer Vashon and Harry Vanderweide talking bear biology.

If you have internet, the link will be...
http://www.ursusproductions.com/bear_tv/northeastoutdoors.htm

The airtime schedule is below. This will be for the week beginning May 29th.

This will be seen throughout New England on NESN - Thanks in part to International Paper donating their paid airtime to our campaign.



Program Market Network/Channel Day Time
Northeast Journal Portland WGME Ch 13 Sat 7:30 AM
Bangor WBGR Ch 33 Sat 11:30 AM
Bangor-Mill-Hoult WABI Ch 5 Sun 8:00 AM
Statewide/Maritimes MPBN Sun 1:00 PM
Southern, NH Yankee Cable Tues 8:30PM
Southern, NH Yankee Cable Wed 11:30AM
Southern, NH Yankee Cable Wed 8:30PM
Southern, NH Yankee Cable Thurs 11:30AM
New England NESN Wed 4:00PM
New England NESN Fri 8:00PM
New England NESN Sun 9:00PM
Southern, NH Yankee Cable Thurs 8:30PM



Bear Meat Still Needed

We are still seeking donations of bear meat to make into bear salami for appetizers for the campaign’s Fall Banquet on September 18th. Thanks so far to Corrine & Dan Pert, Robby Nason, Fred Haverly, Doug Vander Ploeg and Dick Rogers for your offers to donate bear meat. Once we locate a convenient freezer in which to store the meat we will be collecting these donations.

As noted in last week's Newsletter, we will need 250 pounds of bear meat, so if you have bear meat you can donate, please contact Will Gardiner at the campaign office at 1-888-837-4426 or via e-mail at [email protected].

Quote of the Week

From referendum proponent Susan Cockrell, who teaches part time at the University of Maine:

“Placing tons of preservative-filled, hormone-added and antibiotic-laced animal fat and junk food at thousands of bait stations in the Maine woods for more than three months, while animals are ravenously eating to prepare for winter, is a corruption of the most basic principles of environmental and wildlife stewardship.”

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Thank you for taking the time to read our email newsletter. For updated information, and to order tickets to the September 18th Fall Banquet, click on our link “Bear Referendum Information” on SAM’s website at www.samcef.org.

Please forward this email to your family, friends, neighbors, co-workers – help spread the word.
Contact us with questions and comments:
Maine’s Fish and Wildlife Conservation Council
205 Church Hill Road
Augusta, Maine 04330
1-888-837-4426 or 623-3749
Edie Leary, Campaign Manager [email protected]
Will Gardiner, Field Director [email protected]
 

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Our last visit to Lake of the Woods, (Ontario side), was in 1998. The ban on bear hunting had been in effect a year or two by then. It was also a bad year for the blueberries. An over supply of bears and undersupply of natural food resulted. We had bears in camp 5 of the 6 days we stayed there.
Emptied trash cans and trash were stewn all around the cabins. On two mornings, we were awakened early by the sound of gunshots, dogs, and shouting - Wildlife officers & OPP gunning down problem bears.
We had been vacationing near Sioux Narrows for many years, my parents started going up there in 1956. Grandma & Grandpa since the 40's. It was almost like a second home, even though we were only there a couple weeks a year. But we had never seen a time when bears were a problem. The only time we saw bears was if we went to the dump at night - to watch them by car headlights.
We havOur last visit to Lake of the Woods, (Ontario side), was in 1998. The ban on bear hunting had been in effect a year or two by then. It was also a bad year for the blueberries. An over supply of bears and undersupply of natural food resulted. We had bears in camp 5 of the 6 days we stayed there.
Emptied trash cans and trash were stewn all around the cabins. On two mornings, we were awakened early by the sound of gunshots, dogs, and shouting - Wildlife officers & OPP gunning down problem bears.
We had been vacationing near Sioux Narrows for many years, my parents started going up there in 1956. Grandma & Grandpa since the 40's. It was almost like a second home, even though we were only there a couple weeks a year. But we had never seen a time when bears were a problem. The only time we saw bears was if we went to the dump at night - to watch them by car headlights.
We have not been back (for a number of reasons) - but it is clear that wildlife mis-management has ruined what once was.
Healthy bear populations must be hunted to be controlled. When hunted by the public, under management guidelines, revenue is generated. When by law enforcement, revenue is consumed and valuable human resources wasted. Of course this applies to many mis-management situations.
In the St.Louis County area, it is the deer - how can anyone hope to control an exploding deer population by 'darting' with birth control drugs??? They're not even sure if the drugs work!!! Relocation - approx. $4000 per animal.
Where does this insanity stop???
Jon....North American Hunting Club Member
 

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Campaign E-mail Newsletter Issue Number 10
May 28, 2004

The Maine Sportsman Opinion Poll Shows Strong Support for Traditional Hunting Methods

In the May edition of The Maine Sportsman, readers demonstrated their strong support for Maine’s outdoor heritage by answering the following questions:

Do you approve of hunting bears with dogs? Yes 81% No 19%
Do you approve of hunting bears over bait? Yes 86% No 14%
Do you approve of trapping bears? Yes 71% No 29%
Do you approve of hunting bears with dogs in
conjunction with baiting? Yes 52% No 47%
Do you believe hunting bears over bait is sporting? Yes 75% No 24%
Do you believe hunting bear with dogs is sporting? Yes 77% No 23%

These are strong, substantiated facts to quote when you hear proponents of the referendum state that years ago, SAM and/or The Maine Sportsman conducted a poll showing only 50% support for bear baiting. Not true. One of the chief spokespersons for the proponents, Bill Randall, actually states there was “some type” of SAM poll in the mid 1980’s showing weak support for baiting. Not true. Let’s look at recent data – the numbers speak for themselves.

HSUS is NOT your local kennel

We must continue to educate Maine voters that HSUS is a national, political machine, whose sole purpose is to stop hunting.

HSUS, in the words of The Center for Consumer Freedom, “is the single richest animal rights group in the world, with over $100 million in the bank. And it has absolutely no connection to your local humane society or ASPCA animal shelters.”

Worth magazine, in 2002, rated HSUS among the worst managed U.S. “charities.” “We’re not saying it’s crooked,” offers Worth writer Reshma Memom Yaqub, “but we do take issue with some business practices of charities, especially when they spend too much money on fundraising.” Worth notes that HSUS took in over $65 million in 2000, yet spent more than half of it to raise more money.

A watchdog website ActivistCash.com, states the following about HSUS:

“What comes to mind when you hear the words humane society? Likely your local animal shelter that takes in stray, neglected, and abused cats and dogs, promotes their adoption to new homes, and runs spay/neuter programs so that fewer unwanted animals will end up mistreated or euthanized.”

“That’s exactly what the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) is banking on. This intentional misdirection has made HSUS the richest animal rights organization on earth. It raises enough money to finance animal shelters in every single state, with money to spare. But it is not affiliated with any local humane societies, nor does it operate a single animal shelter.

We know where HSUS does spend its money – on ballot initiatives in states such as Maine.

Remember . . . HSUS and other national animal rights groups are funding 91 percent of the proponents’ campaign.

Addition to a previous email newsletter

We inadvertently missed listing Vic Morin of Northwoods Sporting Journal when we thanked NSJ for donating print space to get out our campaign messages. They are also donating air time to help publicize our campaign messages. Thank you to both Vic Morin and Paul Reynolds for their very important support!

Quote of the Week

From Bill Nemitz column in the Maine Sunday Telegram 05/23/04 concerning the bear in South Portland:

“We’re talking dirty tricks of the highest order…we’re talking about a bear-baiting zealot, armed with his motion detector, night-vision goggles and a box of Twinkies, trapping a bear somewhere out in the boonies, spiriting him south in the dead of night and dropping him off, dazed and more than a little confused, at the steps of South Portland High School.”

“Oh good Lord”, said Edie Leary, campaign manager for the pro-baiting Maine Fish and Wildlife Conservation Council, when told Friday about the intimation that the South Portland standoff might have been a set-up.

It’s downright offensive, she added, to suggest that anyone on her side “would put others in harm’s way to get their point across in a political campaign. I think what they are implying is horrendous.”

&&&&&

Thank you for taking the time to read our email newsletter. For updated information, and to order tickets to the September 18th Fall Banquet, click on our link “Bear Referendum Information” on SAM’s website at www.samcef.org.

Please forward this email to your family, friends, neighbors, co-workers – help spread the word.
Contact us with questions and comments:
Maine’s Fish and Wildlife Conservation Council
205 Church Hill Road
Augusta, Maine 04330
1-888-837-4426 or 623-3749
Edie Leary, Campaign Manager [email protected]
Will Gardiner, Field Director [email protected]
 

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When I first started posting the Bear referendum information I would never have guessed that I and my hunt preserve would be part of the story. Five days ago a large black showed up at our farm, he has raided deer feeders . fish food and yesterday I caught him in our hunt preserve chasing one of my stags........It was real obvious that he wanted to dine on my deer...I have called the warden service and they are suppose to help me out......I will keep you updated of the event.

From the woods of Maine,
Mark
www.hindsite-deer.
 

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Update:

I just got back from the preserve and I fired at a bear growling and chasing a pregnant female red deer. I believe I hit the bear , however it ran off and it was almost dark. I will go back tomorrow with the Game Warden Kevin Adams and hopefully find it. This was a smaller one than I saw last night but big enough to kill lambs and small adults....The plot thickens.


Mark
www.hindsite-deer.com
 

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Preserve bear update:

I just got back from the preserve and I fired at a bear growling and chasing a pregnant female red deer. I believe I hit the bear , however it ran off and it was almost dark. I will go back tomorrow with the game warden and hopefully find it. This was a smaller one than I saw last night but big enough to kill lambs and small adults....The plot thickens.


Preserve bear update:

We found the bear this afternoon :D . He was a 200 lb. male. Lean and mean....His paunch was full of lamb hair, my guess it was one of my red deer lambs.There is another bear still hanging arround and I will attempt to take him if I spot him in the preserve.....

From the woods of Maine,
Mark www.hindsite-deer.com
 

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Campaign Email Newsletter Issue Number 11
June 4, 2004

WE MADE OUR GOAL!!

Remember in the May 14 email newsletter, we challenged you to solicit 212 more donors so that we could reach our goal of 6,000 donors for the next PAC reporting period? Well – you did even better than that. We were flooded with envelopes and the campaign now has the strength of 6,050 donors. WOW. Thank you to all of you who helped with this terrific effort.

PAC Finance Reports Tell An Interesting Story

Campaign finance reports filed this week with the Maine State Ethics Commission show that proponents of the referendum have failed miserably at raising money inside the state of Maine.

“Maine Citizens for Fair Bear Hunting” (Bob Fisk) showed contributions of $6,050 for this reporting period and “Hunters for Fair Bear Hunting” (Cecil Gray and Bill Randall) showed donations of $245. This reporting period ran from April 1 to May 27.

In contrast, Maine’s Fish and Wildlife Conservation Council raised $264,656.69, thanks to the generosity of our wonderful supporters. 67 percent of that money came from inside the state of Maine.

Since the campaign began last year, we have 6,050 donations for a total of $737,157.48.

While we still have a long way to go to meet our budget and get our statewide tv ad campaign up and running, we are stunned by the support you have all shown to the cause. We can not thank you enough.

But – don’t be fooled. The proponents have unlimited money at their disposal. As we have reported previously, they have received early (and large!) amounts of money from HSUS, Fund for Animals and other national groups, and they are sitting on a huge bank account.

As Edie Leary stated in the press release accompanying our PAC report, “From previous PAC reports, we know that the proponents are still cash heavy due to early donations from the national groups, and we anticipate even more will come – all they have to do is pick up the phone and ask…We will continue to raise money because we know the potential for out of state donations from the other side. We must continue to try and match those donations – we are still fighting an uphill battle, especially on the money side.”

It is interesting to note that the proponent’s PAC report showed their first large in-state donation has come from Nancy Gray, owner of the Harraseeket Inn in Freeport. She donated $5,000 to “Maine Citizens for Fair Bear Hunting.” Nancy Gray was also a large donor to last year’s “Think About It’ campaign, in favor of building a casino in Southern Maine.

Another great reason to attend the Banquet on September 18 – bear meat hors d’oeuvres!

Thank you to all those who answered our plea for donated bear meat for the Banquet – we have more than enough now! Special thanks to John and Elaine Wardwell, Dana and Gail Allenson, Maynard Stanley, Fred Haverly, Doug Vander Ploeg, Dick Rogers, Corinne and Dan Pert and Robin Nelson.

Also, thank you to Kelly Cochara for offering the use of her big freezer to store all the meat.

What does “SWIM” mean???

Sink…or SWIM !! What is it??? Find out next week…be ready for very exciting news!

Airline Snack Bar holds fundraiser

With food galore, the owners of the Airline Snack Bar, Arthur Tenan and Dan Curtis, raised $1,000 for our campaign by holding a “Fight for Maine’s Hunting Heritage” benefit dinner May 22. People came from all around to Township 22 on Route 9 - the place was packed and everyone had a great time. Thank you so much. We heard the pies were a foot tall…!

Quote of the Week

From a letter to the editor in the Piscataquis Observer, written by Dr. Ogden Small of Caribou:

Sitting in a warm pickup truck, until radio-collared dogs have treed a Maine black bear, and then driving as close to that treed bear as possible, and getting out of that warm pickup, and shooting the bear out of the tree, is not hunting.

&&&&&

Thank you for taking the time to read our email newsletter. For updated information, and to order tickets to the September 18th Fall Banquet, click on our link “Bear Referendum Information” on SAM’s website at www.samcef.org.

Please forward this email to your family, friends, neighbors, co-workers – help spread the word.
Contact us with questions and comments:
Maine’s Fish and Wildlife Conservation Council
205 Church Hill Road
Augusta, Maine 04330
1-888-837-4426 or 623-3749
Edie Leary, Campaign Manager [email protected]
Will Gardiner, Field Director [email protected]

From the woods of Maine,
Mark Luce
www.hindsite-deer.com
 

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The Bear Hunting Ban gains support from non hunters and hunters alike.

White tail hunters take notice:, The #1 killer of white tail fawns in the spring is the black bear. So if you live in a bear rich area of Maine and like to deer hunt, think again. As the bear population grows the deer population will decline. In some areas of the state the deer numbers are low already and the bear population is strong. If the ban pass's the deer population will certainly suffer.........So before you vote in favor of the ban , ask yourself how much the deer herd means to you !

Bear management is crucial to a healthy deer herd !

The best management tools are baiting and hunting with dogs.

Until the mid 50's there was a bounty on black bear....They were hunted year round....Do you want the numbers to once again reach nescience levels ?

This will put livestock, crops and possibly humans in danger.

I had to shoot a bear last week that was after my farm raised deer.....I know first hand what a problem they can be!

I took no joy in killing the bear, however when it comes to protecting my property, I would do it all over again in a heart beat!

Mark Luce www.hindsite-deer.com
 
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