Contributors to this thread:
Hunting ethics, legal or not!?!?
When it comes to hunting a bighorn ram, many of us dream have the opportunity to hold one of these tags and have the chance of harvesting one of these magnificent creatures. Hunters pull out the tool box and use every piece of equipment and tactic they can come up with. One particular method that is legal but questionable, the use of 2 way radios or cell phones to stalk animals. I just watched a hunter this season drop into a rocky circe with out knowing where the rams are bedded, he didn't need to because he has a spotter across the drainage taking him in step by step. The hunter still ended up spooking the rams and the rams jump down hill and stand and look up at the hunter. The hunter draws his bow to attempt a long shot 100+ yds, fires, misses, and then the rams run around the corner from the hunter. The hunter walks across the top to find the rams again, he cant see them, but he doesn't need to. This is where a experienced hunter would be looking around looking down the cliffs trying the to relocate the rams again before making a move. With the spotter, the hunter drops into the rocks and stops above a rock outcropping, as the rams bening very sneaky are stopped back up next to the rock overhang completely hiding from any visibility above. The hunter stops, waits, 20 min, without moving until the rams start moving around and then the hunter moves into position to get a couple more archery shots. This scenario would not happen to the best instinctual hunter on the mountain, it was his spotter telling him with a radio when and where to move to get a shot. This is legal in Colorado, as I recently became aware of, but this did rub me the wrong way, this is not how I was taught to hunt, and is not how I hunt, and will not be teaching my kids how to hunt. Just because this technique is legal should it be used? I greatly distest the practice but as more and more hunters are hunting this way, it starts to put hunters who dont at a great disadvantage. :(
I was basically with you until your last sentence where you say it greatly detests you because people that don't do that are at a great disadvantage? How do you figure that it does that?
Because you can have a hunter climb the mountain in the dark wait till light and their spotter and then locate animals and guide the hunter into animal without the hunter having to see the animal until they are within shooting distance. Normally you would have to see the animals before finalizing your stalk, which mean a little more time glassing from a distance before making a move while the guy with the radio now has time and distance advantage on other hunters.
how is this much different than paying someone to haul you in on a horse, set up camp for you, cook for you, ride their horses up in the canyons and then the guides do all the calling etc ... and all you do it draw and shoot the elk ?
sure, it takes less work for the hunter .... I just don't know that its unethical
I ran into guys last year that would hike the trails at night listening for elk and finding them in the moonlight .... target where they were, hike out, get bows, get back at first light .... illegal? no. Unethical? not really ..... advantageous though over anyone who doesn't scout at night
I'm not a sheep hunter, but it's my understanding that sheep tags are hard to come by. If this is true, then a guy or guys hunting unethically would have an advantage and would possibly have an impact on future tags if the advantage makes them more successful. But..........if it's legal, there's nothing that can be done about it. Legal and ethical are not always the same thing. Raise hell with the Colorado DNR or whatever they call themselves, maybe it can be changed.
Both P&Y and B&C won't accept big game animals into their record books that aren't taken "fair-chase." Both mention that they won't accept big game animals into their program if hunters use electronic communication devices (2-way radios, cell phones, etc.) to guide hunters to game. Hunters must sign an affidavit that they have abided by the rules of fair chase to enter their animal in the 2 record books.
Here is the link to B&C: http://www.boone-crockett.org/huntingEthics/ethics_fairchase.asp?area=huntingEthics
Link to P&Y: http://www.pope-young.org/pdfs/fair_chase_affidavit.pdf
Although it may be "legal" to use communication divises in Colo is it ethical and fair chase? According to P&Y and B&C it is not! I've always thought that ethic rules provided by P&Y and B&C are valuable references for all hunters to abide by?
Is it legal? Yes. Do I like it? No. Just like I find it pathetic that someone takes a 100yd bowshot, even though it’s legal. Unfortunately, there isn’t a damn thing I can do about either, so I just worry about what I can control...and that’s my actions.
The entire B&C rule states this: "Use of electronic communication devices (2-way radios, cell phones, etc.) to guide hunters to game, artificial lighting, electronic light intensifying devices (night vision optics), sights with built-in electronic range-finding capabilities (including smart scopes), drones/unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), thermal imaging equipment, electronic game calls or cameras/timers/motion tracking devices that transmit images and other information to the hunter."
All but the communication devices in this rule is illegal in Colo. Maybe it's time for hunters in Colorado to step up to the plate and request that the CPW make it illegal to use communication devices while stalking game?
I never have and never will submit an animal to B&C or P&Y so their stance is meaningless to me. I follow the regulations of the state where I am hunting. I also think nets are for fishing so what do I know about measuring horns and antlers anyway.
Wyobullshooter well said!
Ethics. I think at least a fifth of any good whiskey, before u can discuss it ... from traditional to compound.. food plot to natural. Handsignals to radios... from driving animals to open stalk.. from drawing a tag to buying a tag. From natural rack to store bought.. lol one more drink..
From the Pope and Young Club "Simply defined, fair chase is the ethical, sportsmanlike, and lawful pursuit of free-ranging wild game animals in a manner which does not give the hunter an improper or unfair advantage over the animal." It's pretty basic... I use this definition when evaluating weather an animal was taken under P&Y rules of Fair Chase. Arguably there are many pieces of equipment and hunting methods that push the boundary...
I'll comment on the use of radios and leave the long shots alone. The use of radios, cell phones... to guide a hunter in on game clearly fall under the rules of Fair Chase and give the hunter an unfair advantage. If you disagree with this there's probably nobody on this planet that can convince you otherwise. If radios are used to take an animal and it's legal, all this means is that P&Y and B&C will not accept it into their Records Program, that's all...
Personally, I feel that using radios to guide a hunter in on an animal is 100% an unfair advantage. I'd go out on a limb and say that with the use of radios a good hunter can be guided into bow range of a bedded Mule deer 90+% of the time. Killing the deer is a different story. There is a very successful Mule deer bowhunter who has killed a trophy room full of giant Mule deer with the use of radios. None of them are in the record books and he is a P&Y member in good standing. To each his own... There's bigger fires to put out. Ed F
Its unethical plain and simple. Whether it’s legal or not.
There are 15 states that do not allow it. Colorado is not one of them but personally, I wish they were. When I questioned the old DOW staff, about use of "radios" to direct a hunter to an animal, I was told it was too hard to enforce and prove in court.
Jims, your position would make sense if hunters fully disclosed the means by which they take game when signing fair chase affidavits. Whether by lie or through ignorance of state hunting regulations, there are lots of animals in the books that were not taken under the definition of fair chase.
Legal and ethics are two seperate issues and terms.
Until practiced methodology increases harvest numbers enough to decrease tag allotment, I don't get the "disadvantage" angle. Of course, that could be happening as far as I know.
Tag allotment is the result of technology.
It certainly isn't for me but many do it, flagging or radio's or phones when service is available.
Good luck, Robb
Tag allotment is the results of plan objectives and where the population of the animal is at concerning the long term objective. Technology has zero to do with setting those objectives. Harvest quotas are set with only objectives in mind. Not Technology. Might it influence percentages of take? Yes it has that potential. But, in areas that require a lottery limited system to hunt, like ram hunts, current population and goal objectives are the variables that effects tag allotment's. Not two way radios, GPS's, trail cams, Crossbows, weapons choice, etc.....
How did a sheep hunt turn into politics?Ronald Rump!!!
If I'm not mistaken, the CPW recently made it to illegal to use drones for scouting or hunting:
“The bottom line is, if it’s related to a hunt in any way, you can’t do it,” Dugan says, “for scouting, locating, anything. If they fly before they take an animal, they’re illegal. If they use the drone to locate an animal they may have shot and wounded, they’re illegal.”
This comes directly from the mouth of Dugan who works for the CPW. How is this any different than communication devices?
I was excited to see this is now law in Colorado. I'm not exactly sure how radios and other communication devices are any different than drones or chute planes? I would actually consider communication devices even worse than drones or planes because hunters are given "real time" and current directions while stalking game! Drones and chute planes were also recently classified as illegal for the same reason in Wyoming. Doesn't seem like fair chase to me! It certainly gives hunters an unfair advantage over game.
If chute plane and drones can be written into CPW regulations....why not communication devices? CPW officials not being able to enforce the law is a very poor excuse! What happens when animal rights activist find out that it is legal for hunters to use radios and phones to stalk game?
An even worse case scenario is....what happens when non-hunters or animal activists run into hunters that are using radios to give direction while stalking game? Do you think it possibly could give hunters a bad rap and even possibly end up on 9 news?
Is this really any different then having a spotter giving hand signals?
Historical harvest numbers and quotas are for sure effected by technology. For example if you have a unit that your targeted quota was 4 animals and historic Archery success rates were 25% over a long period of time, it would be safe with a steady population to issue 16 tags reflecting the harvest goal and success rate to take approximately 4 animal. If a technological advance allowed that success rate to climb to 50% over a significant sample size the total tag allotment would need to be reduced 8 tags providing you wanted to the maintain the same harvest of 4 animals in the unit.
“See/seen” etc., etc. = usage = grammar.
“Acorns/akerns” etc., etc. = pronunciation = dialect.
Bad grammar is bad grammar no matter whose mouth it comes out of/who writes it.
As we get more and more down the rabbit hole, I think we go deeper and deeper down the ethics black hole. Example: It is considered legal, and ethical to do a "drive" where one set of hunters walk thought the woods and attempt to move game past other hunters. So should it then be OK for someone with a drone to push animals to a waiting hunter? Of course not.
As we get more advanced devices, cameras, etc, we move farther and farther away from what we go hunting for. If someone hunts only to have a head on the wall, then those options become "ethical" to them, but will never be so to me. For those who say, it is legal so get off my back, I say: I will try to change the policy so that it is not legal, and I have every right to talk about it and act on it.
I don't even think trail cameras are fair chase, what do you think about that,,,,,,,, technology in the end, will screw up hunting as we have known it for a long time,,,, my opinion, just stating what I think is a fact,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,
God forbid you hunt without a smart phone, oh my, how do I stay in touch, while in the field? When I hunt, the idea is not to stay in touch,,,,,,, a lot of whiners, have had a lot of rules changed,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,
Hey it's no different than someone using a spotter that guides a person to a spot with hand signals. Thats been taught in books and magazines for a long time.
The "drive" to kill trophy or record book animals leads less than ethical hunters to do stupid crap. These extreme fee and or once in a lifetime tags bring out the worst in hunters. It seems sheep hunters are often guilty of these tactics. Getting a dozen friends with spotting scopes to blanket a drainage or hillside....use radio communication etc. What`s next....shooting a trophy ram with a GPS chip in the preseason....lol. BTW the analogy of using horses and a guide to a backwoods camp was ridiculous at best.
GH I agree when will it end.
Ethics, morals, principals....that's pretty much what my parents taught me growing up! I may not be perfect but that's what I strive for! It is spooky to think what's going to happen to the young generations growing up today and the generations to come! It's important that we instill in our children the same principles we had growing up. I hope every one of you dads out there sit down and reflect on the past, what's currently going on, and where hunting is headed in the future! It's totally up to you to teach your kids that ethics, morals, and principles are super important! Harvesting an animal is only a small part of the game!
I just hunted with a guy that thinks all trail cameras should be banned. Two days later he hands me a 2 way radio. he tells me to guide the hunters in to a caribou that we were watching. I turned it off. Couple days after that he was discussing how you hunt wolves on snowmobiles, lets just say its not what I would call fair chase. But this individual felt very strongly about trail cameras. Its the Mentality that all your BS is ruining the world but my BS is ok.....
So true beemann, what might be good for the goose, might not be for the gander! JIms, that is where things start and should still be taught, otherwise we will loose it forever. Ethic courses should be a greater part of hunter education, I think its touched on a little, maybe more emphasis on ethics should be offered. All of these things are why this thread can go on forever. Here is a real life question this poses and why this sheep thread is appropriate. When hunting a once and life time opportunity like sheep/goat or a high profile hunt like dropping 15pts on a elk or deer tag. You hire a guide to increase your opportunity chances, and the guide says to you; We use radios when stalking because it gets you in the best position for a shot, and your best chance to harvest your once in a life time opportunity. What do you do? Its legal! Your not breaking any laws! Talking in a forum is easy to say what you would and would not do, but the question goes deep into what you really believe is right or wrong! Also on the flip side as a guide, a hunter shows up and says "you use radios right? I think that is the advantage I need to harvest my animal! Everyone else is using them!" You can substitute "radio" with anything, cameras, snowmobiles, bait, scents, compound bows, long range shooting, etc. Tough calls and it will be very interesting to see how better technology will further take us away from the simple and basic pursuit of those gods great creatures "Man vs. WIld". If it is all about killing, then our future generations might just loose the opportunity to hunt with so much pressure against guns and hunting in today's society. If people just hunt to kill, thats an easier battle for those who would like to see it go away. So is where ethics are important?
Personally, I don't see a problem with it. The guy still has to use the terrain to get close enough, still has to beat the nose, still has to make the shot so on and so forth. Hunters have been doing the same thing, albeit with different materials for years and years.
Ethics are a funny thing!! My Dad always said Ethics are what you do when no one is watching!! Think about that for a minute!! I myself feel a lot of things that are totally legal and allow animals to qualify for the record books and are allowed by state game laws are not right!!! When it comes to what folks feel is ethical, who am I to decide that?? Shawn
There are lots of things which are legal, but not at all ethical.
If you have to ask yourself if something is ethical, it's likely because you already know it's not ethical and are simply trying to rationalize it.
It is illegal in Colorado to use radios and or phones to guide hunters to game. Unless there is some exception that I don't know about. From the Colorado 2018 Big Game Brochure "22. For two or more people on the ground, in a vehicle or vessel to use electronic devices to communicate information that violates any wildlife law or regulation."
Your not interpreting that brochure statement correctly SlipShot. It is not illegal to use radios or phones while hunting game. It is illegal to use them while violating a game law. Semantics, sure.
Paul is correct in his earlier post- they changed the Statute due to cellular technology and satellite phones which most people use now rather than radios. Most Wardens and LEA's have scanners and can listen in to open frequency conversations-
MathewsMan, thanks for clarifying. It should be illegal!
OP has good points and I have wrestled with this. A really good practiced set of flags with spotter and hunter carrying a small sheet with signals to prevent errors can work 90% as good and most consider that ok - so is there a really big difference? I say yes but cannot really explain why..............
I think it should be illegal everywhere. That said here in Ohio when gun hunting and I hear my buddy shoot I can't help but text and ask what happened!
The latest issue of Fair chase had an article about “if there’s no chase is the hunt still fair?” It’s about using tree stands to hunt. These arguments go on for ever. All it seems to accomplish is someone try’s to prove I’m better than everyone else because I don’t do this. It’s just being legalistic.
OP, that is not legal here in Idaho. We do, in fact, discuss over radios animals we've heard or seen, but do not guide someone in on an animal using radios.
Just because something is legal... dosnt mean you should
But don’t malign fellow hunters that follow the law and do legal things that you don’t. This is like arguing religion and politics.
"Technology" can indeed have affect on tag allotments. If a unit has a goal of eliminating 50 animals in a region and only 15% of the 50 tag holders harvest a animal then the next year they would have to increase the total number of tags to reach their objectives. If "technology" increases the harvest to 75% of hunters scoring, the tag allotment would most certainly go down. Just look at harvest % of gun vs. bow. If you want 10 animals to be killed each year with a bow you probably have to issue 80 tags.
You lost me as soon as you called taking life "harvest".