Poachers Out in the Bush
Probably Contribute to Moose Decline
Letters to the Editor / Anchorage Daily News / November 11, 2003
I have yet to see anyone use the word "poaching" as a reason that moose counts have declined in McGrath or in any of the other areas of the state. Instead, the claim is that the bears and wolves are to blame. Why is that? You can't tell me that Alaskans are not opportunistic and wouldn't for a second think of shooting a moose from their back porch in order to not actually have to get out there and "hunt" for one.
I grew up on a farm in Missouri. We ran many a poacher from our property where they used spotlights to blind the deer and then shoot them. Now, is there anyone out there who can convince me that someone living out in the Bush, without a neighbor for miles and miles, would pass on shooting a moose out of season if he knew that he was not going to get caught? I don't think so.
Bears and wolves are just as opportunistic as those hunters out there, but they don't have a grocery store to back them up if they come up empty on a hunt. If the hunters had to put as much effort into their hunts as the predators do, they would give up long before they got started.
-- Andy Boedefeld / Anchorage
Wolf Song of Alaska, P.O. Box 671670, Chugiak, Alaska 99567-1670