Florida Black Bear Update: Ammoland! Safari Club! Wildlife conservation is really hunting. GOGETUM!

 From the you can’t make this stuff up file.

http://www.ammoland.com/
“Tucson, AZ -(AmmoLand.com)- Safari Club International was pleased to be the only hunting group to assist the State of Florida in protecting the state’s black bear season against a challenge from anti-hunters.

On Thursday, October 1, 2015, after a five hour hearing, a Florida state court denied a request filed by Florida group, Speak Up Wekiva, to shut down Florida’s first black bear hunt in decades. As a result of the ruling, the hunt is set to commence as planned on October 24th.

Deserving most of the credit for the victory are Florida’s state attorneys and biologists, who aggressively defended the hunt in court. SCI assisted in defending the hunt by submitting a powerful amicus brief that explained to the court how stopping the hunt would harm SCI members and the general Florida hunting community.”

Let me repeat this: SCI assisted in defending the hunt by submitting a powerful amicus brief that explained to the court how stopping the hunt would harm SCI members and the general Florida hunting community.

SCI’s brief also provided concrete data from SCI’s past involvement with black bear litigation in New Jersey. The data refuted the Plaintiffs’ claims that the hunt would harm Florida’s black bear population. An SCI attorney appeared at the hearing to offer assistance as needed. SCI’s local counsel in Florida, attorney Ethan Way – a member of SCI’s Tallahassee Chapter – assisted SCI’s in-house litigation attorneys in filing our brief and appearing in court.

SCI is proud to be a part of this latest victory. SCI has a long history of conserving Florida black bears through sustainable use. Almost ten years ago, SCI helped the federal government defend a lawsuit seeking to force a listing of the Florida black bear under the Endangered Species Act, which would have prevented Florida’s current hunt.

If anti-hunting groups decide to continue to try to stop the hunt, SCI will continue to help Florida defend against any challenge.

About Safari Club International:

Safari Club International – First For Hunters is the leader in protecting the freedom to hunt and in promoting wildlife conservation worldwide. SCI’s approximately 200 Chapters represent all 50 of the United States as well as 106 other countries. SCI’s proactive leadership in a host of cooperative wildlife conservation, outdoor education and humanitarian programs, with the SCI Foundation and other conservation groups, research institutions and government agencies, empowers sportsmen to be contributing community members and participants in sound wildlife management and conservation.”

http://beforeitsnews.com/survival/2015/10/hunters-win-in-florida-judge-denies-motion-to-stop-black-bear-hunt-2587750.html?utm_source=dlvr.it&utm_medium=twitter

This hunt is not about dealing with the issues. This is the kinda crap we have to deal with the water. Big business coming in and taking away our Florida.

Where we’re at at this point and some history. I’m pretty sure this is from Chuck O’Neal

This might be a good time to review where we are in the legal process. In June of 2015, the FWC Commissioners passed a rule authorizing a bear hunt to begin Oct 24th. Legally, their rule could not be challenged until it be effective on July 29th. Two days later we filed our complaint (lawsuit) challenging the constitutionality of the FWC’s bear hunt rule on the basis that it was in contravention to the intent of the voters and intent of the framers of the 1998 constitutional amendment that created the FWC.

The Florida Supreme Court has consistently ruled from 1960 (Gray vs Bryant) forward that: “The fundamental object to be sought in construing a constitutional provision is to ascertain the intent of the framers and the provision must be construed or interpreted in such manner as to fulfill the intent of the people, never to defeat it. Such a provision must never be construed in such manner as to make it possible for the will of the people to be frustrated or denied.”

The FWC filed their answer to our complaint on September 30. Now that they have filed their answer we move into the discovery phase where we can depose potential witnesses under oath. Just like any other investigation, we must start at the bottom and work our way up the ladder. We have a statement under oath that the commissioners made the decision for the hunt to proceed this year. This statement was a completely new revelation because prior to this, the commissioners indicated they were acting upon the advice of Dr Eason. Now Dr Eason has said it was the commissioners who directed the hunt to proceed this year, not him.

Since the FWC took its time on answering the complaint and it was clear that the trial would not be held before the Oct 24 start of the proposed hunt, we filed an emergency motion for a temporary injunction to place a stay on the hunt until the case could be resolved. That motion for a temporary injunction was heard on October 1st. You can watch the replay on the Florida Channel link below.

There is a very high legal bar that must be cleared in order for the injunction to be granted. We felt we had a good chance to clear that bar because we argued that the unlimited two day beginning to the hunt did not protect their quota rule of 320.

During the hearing on Oct 1, long after their response to our motion, the FWC lawyers came up with an obscure rule about the power of their executive director during an emergency (like a natural catastrophe) that they did not even know about at the September FWC meeting. That was when Com Spottswood proposed the executive director be given the power to call the hunt after the first day. Com Priddy shot down that idea and won the vote 3-2.

Judge Reynolds had many concerns about the way the hunt was designed but ruled against our motion for a temporary injunction. In essence, he gave them a D but they still passed the course.

However, that ruling was just on our motion for a temporary injunction. That is an entirely different thing that the actual case which we filed on 7/31. The lawsuit proceeds and the investigation now begins with the ability to depose witnesses under oath.

We are committed to pursue justice for the bears by uncovering the truth behind this hunt. Was it a political decision or one based on sound science? The voters in 1998 created a commission that is independent of politics, one that makes decisions based on sound science. Are there other non-lethal ways to achieve the same goals as a hunt? Are these non-lethal means more representative of the intent of the voters? We intend to prove the answer to all three questions is yes.

Its important to remember that the bear hunt rule is for an annual hunt, meaning if we give up now, we will be fighting this fight every year until we win this lawsuit. So it is not just about the proposed hunt for Oct 24, its about keeping a species from being driven into extinction.

This motion was very expensive to pursue. It will cost even more to hold depositions of witnesses to get to the bottom of how this hunt came to be. We have been blessed to have the financial support of people and organizations from around the world. Please continue to do so, knowing that Oct 1 was just the first battle, not the war.

We are convinced that the Florida Supreme Court will in the end find that this hunt is contrary to the intent of the voters and contrary to the intent of the framers, but we have a long road ahead of us. Let’s stick together and arrive on that day as the name of this page implies, Floridians united to save our bears.

Click here to support the lawsuit.

https://www.gofundme.com/6y6k5vm8

Speaking of Guns, SNL did this hysterical skit on guns and it was just perfect. Because what else can you do? There is no talking, no discussion. What can you do but make something so absurd we all can laugh at the absurdity of it all. Who better to star in it than Amy Schumer.

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Good News Monday: Some Relief for Florida’s Bear Hunt

Good News Monday: Some Relief for Florida’s Bear Hunt

Judge to consider stopping Florida bear hunt

A judge agreed Friday morning to hear arguments Oct. 1 that could stop Florida’s bear hunt.

Speak Up Wekiva Inc. and Chuck O’Neal of Longwood, opponents of the state’s first bear hunt in more than two decades, want Circuit Judge George S. Reynolds III to impose a temporary injunction to prevent the hunt from taking place Oct. 24.

The lawsuit alleges the state Fish & Wildlife Conservation Commission has crafted rules that could unwittingly lead to the killing of more than 320 bears, the kill quota established by the wildlife agency.

More than 2,100 hunters have gotten a permit.

“The FWC is not above the law or common sense,” O’Neal said.

Mayo: Bear hunt too much too soon

Next month’s black bear hunt is a quintessential Florida event, blending our state’s love of guns with its disdain for reason and science.

Shoot first, get the data later.

“You should have all your science in place before you hold your first hunt in 21 years, especially when you’re dealing with an icon animal,” a hunt opponent told me Friday.

That quote didn’t come from some Sierra Club tree-hugger or PETA paint-thrower, but a Broward businessman, hunter and outdoorsman who answers his phone by saying, “Alligator Ron.” That would be Ron Bergeron, a Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation commissioner who voted against the hunt.

Alligator Ron was on the losing end of a 3-2 vote earlier this month. That’s bad news for bears.

Not long ago, Florida’s black bears were considered a threatened species, numbering only a few hundred. They have rebounded to an estimated population of 3,100.

Starting Oct. 24, roughly 10 percent could get wiped out in a week.

It’s refreshing to read about a hunter who actually believes this bear hunt is wrong. I guess I will have to take back my “the only good hunter is a dead hunter” viewpoint. The problem is not too many bears; it’s too many humans moving to Florida. Too many lazy humans who…

The commission decided to allow an unlimited number of hunters off up to 320 bears, a curious decision because Bergeron said they haven’t even gotten updated bear information in all the hunting zones.

“The state is divided into seven bear regions, with four allowing hunting [next month],” Bergeron said. “Two of those four regions’ stock assessments have not been finalized. We’re making assumptions based on the 2002 assessments…We don’t have all the data.”

Bergeron still hunts one deer, one turkey and one hog a year, but he won’t be taking aim at any bears next month.

“Until all of the science and stock assessments are in and show that we have a sustainable bear population and we have a population greater than the balance of the food chain, this seems premature,” Bergeron told me.

State Rep. Frank Artiles, R-Miami, has no qualms. He’s among the 2,100 (and counting) who’ve paid for bear-hunt permits.

“This is to sustain a population, not to eviscerate it,” Artiles said Friday.

Artiles said thinning some older aggressive male bears will allow younger bears to stay in their natural habitat.

Part of hunt supporters’ rationale: Bears have become a nuisance in some populated areas in central Florida, foraging through trash for food.

“One thing I hope this hunt will do is train bears to be afraid of humans again instead of there being no repercussions,” Artiles told my colleague Dan Sweeney last week.

Say what? How are we going to train bears since the ones who learn the lesson will be dead? And how does killing a bear in Collier County translate to reforming nuisance bears near Orlando? Will the bears who dodge bullets in the western Everglades go on Bear Facebook to alert their friends: “Those crazy humans are shooting at us! Stay away from trash cans and houses!”

“It’s not teaching like a circus animal, but I believe the hunting will pressure them,” Artiles, an avid hunter, told me. “It’s proven and documented that deer know to avoid humans during hunting season.”

“I don’t really believe this will change behavior,” Bergeron said. “Bears really want to avoid people. What brings them to town is garbage. It’s an easy meal.”

A better solution than a widespread hunt, Bergeron said, would be bringing bear-proof trash cans to the 14 counties where nuisance bears have been reported. And Bergeron led an effort to halt the harvesting of palmetto berries from state land, giving bears a better chance of finding meals in the wild. “We were taking away their natural food,” he said.

Next month, hunters will try to take away much more.

Come Oct. 24, I’ll be rooting for the bears.

mmayo@sunsentinel.com, 954-356-4508.

Here is MY letter to the editor at our Stuart News.

Letter: Those opposed to the bear hunt are not ‘animal-rights extremists’

Cyndi Lenz, Jensen Beach

Letter: Those opposed to the bear hunt are not ‘animal-rights extremists’

What is going on now in reaction to the Florida bear hunt is not a circus. It’s the reaction of most Floridians. Most of us are fine with hunting. We have many things in Florida you can hunt. In Florida, if it moves you can shoot it. Unless it is protected.

At last week’s hearing in Ft. Lauderdale I heard the hunters say they are for conservation and they know what they are doing. Well, they don’t. The hunters are being used to promote a bigger agenda, and that is deregulating everything so developers can develop and builders can build. Florida has the most protected species in the world — “developers.”

There will not be any land to hunt on because it going to be full of shopping centers and no-lot-line houses. There will be no hunting because there will be no place to hunt. When I spoke to a representative from the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission last year the plan was education. The issue was humans feeding the bears. There was no doubt about this. People needed to be educated.

There was a bill approved by the Senate that made it a third-degree felony to feed the bears. So instead of educating people we’re going to charge them with something that is as serious as possession of cocaine. Makes sense only because we live in Florida. We don’t fix things in Florida like normal people. Logic has no home here. The downlisting came after the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service was petitioned by Pacific Legal Foundation, a private property advocacy group in Sacramento, California. So let’s all settle down and do what needs to be done for our black bears. Stop the hunt. Educate.

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So all good!

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