To the editor:
In regards to Tim Mowry's article referring to the "bellowing" of several Fairbanks moose hunters causing the Alaska Board of Game to "reluctantly" approve a scaled-down version of the anterless hunt.
Tim Mowry is a well known supporter of biologist Don Young and his articles reflect his bias. Credit needs to be given to Healy Advisory Committee member Wayne Walters for starting an anti-cow hunt petition drive that mushroomed into a major movement against Fish and Game's management policy.
A public coup occurred replacing many of the Fairbanks and Healy Advisory Committee members that were in favor of continued cow hunts. Majority public opinion has spoken in this matter!
There are serious flaws in Fish and Game's management strategy. The study area is in an area of Unit 20A inaccessible to hunters. When the cow hunt was started the amount of hunters tripled along limited access trails. Healthy resident moose were slaughtered and hunting opportunities have greatly diminished in the accessible areas. Until Fish and Game joins with the Department of Natural Resources to create a winter access trail to the problem area for hunters the issues of nutritional deficit and twinning rates will not be resolved. Also, upon questioning Don Young concerning the accuracy of the population surveys he mentioned a "fudge factor" of 2,000 animals above or below current estimates.
Taking into consideration the fact that a survey was not conducted last year and the admitted fudge factor, how can Young possibly be confident that allowing only 200 cows harvested will allow the herd to continue to grow?
Ron Samash, Nenana