: The Piping Plover Sticker and Fisherman's Logic
07-31-2001, 09:02 AM
This isn't a flame and I didn't want to start "thread creep" in Juro's sticker thread so I'm starting a new thread in reaction to a post about the "Piping Plover tastes like Chicken" bumper sticker.
I'm not some PETA weeny. I hunt and eat the birds I shoot, and I fish and sometimes kill and eat
what I catch. But we gotta stop beating up on the plovers. I fish where beach access is severely restricted by plover nesting closures and I've been inconvenienced no end by the restrictions.
But there are only about 1,300 nesting pairs of those birds from the Carolinas to Maine. And their annual breeding success is on the order of about 1.5 chicks per year--closer to 1 in Massachusetts. Compare that to the bass population. If you're a catch and release fisherman, given stripers' relative abundance, how can you be down on plovers? The older I get, the more fun it is just to be "out there." Lots of fish or huge fish aren't as important as the company (or the solitude) and the surroundings. And believe me, the call of those plovers is beautiful and a scarce part of a nice day on the water.
I hope everyone will take this in a constructive spirit, but there's an inconsistency between catch and release and working for restrictions to save and expand the bass fishery and then coming down on the plovers and least terns, even in fun. We're all in this together, us, the fish and the birds. Soapbox rant over. Usual disclaimers about my opinion only and multiple smily insertions imputed.
Very well said, and I agree completely. Of course the other thread was made totally in jest without an iota of seriousness or conscience for that matter, probably the best word being "frivolous". Yet in retrospect it never hurts to be serious for a moment and think about the dangers of acting on frivolous thinking, as the masses so often do.
If we stick to laughing at frivolous thoughts and acting on serious ones, we're good humans. If we act on frivolous thoughts and don't take important things seriously, we are a street mob.
It's assuring to know we are good humans, besides I'd never judge a woman by a picture of her boat and motor! }>
07-31-2001, 02:00 PM
Relax, I was joking. You got to run with the thread. I'm first in line when it comes to protecting endagered species. But you took the joke as if I were out stomping on plover nests. My thinking was more in line with teasing the folks who ban bear hunting, not one of the activities I partake in, then complain that the that the bears are in their feeders and snacking on little foo-foo. LIGHTEN UP!
It’s ironic that the National Audubon society by going Overboard trying to protect this species has created a great deal of animosity toward the little critters. I think the Piping plover are kinda cool but I take great exception with the organizations that impose restrictions and take extreme actions to protect them. Closing beaches to OSV, I can see that being necessary given the variety of beach users we’ve got out there. Caging the birds and shooting the predators, that’s going overboard. When one special interest group has some much more power than all the others, we are in trouble.
We’ve been in trouble for a while now.
07-31-2001, 02:38 PM
I think plovers are cool too and would hate to see them dissappear. I go out of my way to give them space and get pissed when punks destroy nests, which happens time and again up here. I have no real concerns that protection groups do what they do. We can all get along out there. I hate more that you can't park anywhere for shore access then having to walk a little out of my way for wildlife to get to a good rip. Bottom line on the line is I SAW IT ON A STICKER ON ANOTHER GUYS TRUCK AT THE RHODY THIS SPRING AND THOUGHT IT WAS A GOOF. I think we are all pretty much in agreement on plovers. I'm done defending a joke that was meant to get a rise out of plover lovers not someone I probably would offer a cup of coffee to up country partridge hunting. THE END!
"This is not an easy time for humorists because the government is far funnier than we are."
-- Art Buchwald, speech, 1987
07-31-2001, 07:43 PM
Hey Juro.... where are the pictures of Mike and Ike... our seal skull Rip Trip buddies?
First off, I believe in protecting the Piping Plovers. I see them a lot where I fish in RI. They love to setup house on a deserted beach, Which is an area I fish. Club members, myself included have always given them the right of way, and stayed away from their nesting sites. The club I belong to has about 12 acres of barrier beach, We have a sand trail which is an old trail dating back to when they had a Coast Guard station at the westside Quonochotaug. This trail accesses the club area where we park beach buggys overnite while fishing. This year, as the Piping Plovers increase, expand, the USFW has decided we cannot access our own property, during the after dark or predawn hours. One cannot get in, or get out. During the daylight hours they now have observers to walk in front of your 4 wheel drive vehicle when passing the nesting area, which is about a 1/4 mile long. The whole area is fenced off on the beach side of the trail, right up past where we park the beach buggys, with two walkways for beach access.
I am hoping that they ease the restrictions soon, as I think the second hatching is about ready to fly away. I expect that next year the USFW will pose additional restrictions as there will be more birds. I still wonder what would happen if a pair decided to nest on a beach like Westerly Town Beach? I have pictures taken of the fencing in front of the club property, if anyone wants to see them drop me an e-mail, as I don't know how to post them. They were taken on July13,2001.
07-31-2001, 11:23 PM
Art.. I don't know about your club but at mine we wear fez's and fake teeth... If you want we can show up and atleast scare away the observers.
08-01-2001, 09:30 AM
I took this offline with Chris to clear the air, but I feel like I've gotta come back one time.
Art, like you, I think the enforcement and protection is way too strict. Do I think more government is the solution? No, in about 99 percent of the cases. I cursed the state and the Department of the Interior every step of a long death march from the Galls to Great Point because of plovers. I've been shut out of good parts of the west end of Nantucket by the plovers.
But extinct is forever. I'd like to flush and shoot a heath hen on the Vineyard. Can't do it. They're gone. I'd like to decoy a Labrador Duck and grill the the breasts. No such luck; the bird is extinct.
What I was trying to say was that if plovers were abundant and there were just 1,300 breeding pairs of striped bass up and down this seaboard, ask yourself what the fishing community would do. We'd be turning ourselves inside out to stave off extinction. We'd be writing letters, showing up at hearings, camping of the steps of statehouses and the Department of Marine Fisheries. We'd be calling for a moratorium, appropriations for increased enforcement, etc., etc.. Everyone from the Phnom Penh Anglers Club in Lowell, to the CCA, to the Chatham Anglers Club (nice fez, John) would be up in arms. The plovers are only peripherally a fisherman's issue, but to the extent that its all interrelated, I was asking that we step back and think about a bigger picture and the quality of the experience out on the beach-presumably a big reason, especially for the folks on this board, to go out there.
The Internet is great for a lot of things but discussions like this are probably better held around a table with a couple of bottles on it after a day, of fishing--when you can look one another in the eye and smile. Let's save Juro's bandwith for more useful fishing information and discussion. I'm at Broadbill7@aol.com or firstname.lastname@example.org if anyone wants to continue offline.