ANYONE hunt Lake Harbor WMA this year?

Discussion in 'Florida Flyway Forum' started by BigBullGator, Mar 5, 2003.

  1. Fyrestorm

    Fyrestorm Guest

    Was that creditable enough..............;)
     
  2. darkwing duck

    darkwing duck Senior Refuge Member

    Messages:
    169
    Joined:
    Sep 4, 2002
    Location:
    on my airboat in the marsh
    I will be short and sweet. We a group of concerned hunters have met with fwc and okelanta on many ocassions and the meetings have been useless. They have their own agenda and believe me lake harbor will be no longer before long. If you contact the correct people like wildcat stated and spoke to them you might get the same feeling. MISMANAGMENT is in my opinion the problem.
     
  3. Busta Drake

    Busta Drake Guest

    Wildcat said: I think the question is who did you speak to???
    If you spoke with someone in the WMS I'm guessing it was someone from Tallahasee.

    My reply: Wildcat – To answer your question, I spoke with Jamie at the T.M. Goodwin office, not somebody in Tallahassee. I guess you were wrong on that point.

    Wildcat said: Regardless, I know for a fact Darkwing and a group of his associates have volunteered their time and resources to help with Lake Harbor.

    My reply: He told me that no one has ever spoken to him about volunteering at Lake Harbor. So again I ask, whom did you folks talk to about volunteering? Someone at the regional office? Someone in TALLAHASSEE?

    Wildcat said: I have investigated the LH issue and have worked on trying to resolve some of the problems.

    My reply: Here’s where you begin to lose credibility. Jamie said he has never had a conversation with you about Lake Harbor. He suspects that you spoke with BJ Kattel (who no longer works for the Fish and Wildlife Commission anymore) in the South Regional Office. However, he (Jamie) is the one who oversees the management at Lake Harbor. BJ was in charge of administering the hunt program.

    Wildcat said: The problem with LH is that there are way too many groups involved with the property.

    My reply: FWC and Okeelanta Sugar? Too (or two) many groups involved? Neither the Board of Trustees nor DU are involved in the management. For that fact only FWC is involved in the management. Okeelanta is just a contractor that farms the land. More credibility loss.

    Wildcat said: The only good thing I can see from FWC's agreement with DU is that if FWC decides to cancel the LH project then FWC must pay back DU the money that was spent on the construction costs.

    My reply: That’s the only good thing about the agreement? How about a wetland to hunt in among all those sugar fields? How about a farming practice that’s a little more environmentally friendly? Without the involvement of FWC, Lake Harbor would be just another sugar field. Do you think DU solicited FWC to initiate that project? I hate to inform you but it doesn’t work like that. FWC approached DU about the project. I think you need to brush up on your knowledge of how the MARSH program works. How about the PRIVELEGE to hunt? Just because DU is involved, doesn’t automatically mean hunting is guaranteed. More credibility loss.

    Wildcat said: Now here is the kicker..... Okeelanta Sugar corp. is repsonible to leave a ratoon crop of rice each year before waterfowl season and they are also responsible for maintaining the water levels. FWC is supposed to coordinate the planting dates and water level management but like Darkwing has said its fairly hard for someone to do that from a couple hundred miles away.

    My reply: I guess you haven’t been working very hard at “investigated the LH issue and have worked on trying to resolve some of the problems” or else you would know that FWC and Okeelanta have modified the management scheme because of an invasive plant species. Their hands are kind of tied because Lake Harbor is an organic ag field; therefore, you can’t use chemicals and you can’t burn as a control of invasive plants. The ratoon crop idea has been partially abandoned and they try to plant millet now to compensate for the lost ratoon. Losing more credibility at a high rate of speed.

    Wildcat said: Here are the problems I see with LH right now:

    1. The Ratoon crop that is left over is not large enough to sustain a viable food source for waterfowl for the majority of the season.

    My reply: Well, see my previous point. Additionally, I was wondering about your credentials to opine on the nutritional requirements of migrating and wintering waterfowl? I do see that you are the State Chairman for Delta Waterfowl. What degrees do you hold and from which universities?

    Wildcat said: 2. The water levels are not managed well enough to allow maximum use for waterfowl. many times the water is extremely too deep.

    My reply: This may or may not be the case, I've never hunted there. I’m curious, what do you, as a waterfowl expert, consider “too deep” for waterfowl?

    Wildcat said: 3. The current hunt system is encouraging way too many sky busters and slob hunters, totally decreasing the hunting experience on the area.

    My reply: This comment really disappointed me. I can’t believe that you would even associate slob hunters with mismanagement. Slob hunters are a part of what we love, sad but true. But is that really mismanagement? Are you calling for elitist hunting? If so, then go join a duck hunting club. What about public opportunity? In your next point you talk about fairness. How is isolating a group of hunters fair? Sure, they may not be the greatest in the duckblind, but as long as they have the proper licenses, stamps, and permits, they still have the same amount of PRIVELEGE (hunting is not a right afforded by the Constitution) to hunt at LH than you. Tremendous loss of credibility.

    Wildcat said: 4. The call in system could be changed to a permit system that would IMHO the fairest way to administer the hunts.

    My reply: The call in system IS a permit system. You call in to secure your permit to hunt the area. If you don’t get through then you go hunt somewhere else. Too bad. Or do you have another type of permit system in mind?

    Wildcat said: BTW if you want to the low-down on Lake Harbor it would probably be in your best intrest to talk to one of the people that actually work on it instead of somebody from Tallahasee.

    My reply: I recommend the same for you.

    Hey Fyrestorm, to answer your question:

    Was that creditable enough..............

    I gather by the “winky guy” that your comment was meant to be tongue-in-cheek, but no it was not “creditable” enough. It definitely wasn’t even credible. Credibility isn’t something you get by being able to spout empty facts. There has to be some truth and substance behind those facts.


    Posted by darkwing duck:
    We a group of concerned hunters have met with fwc and okelanta on many ocassions and the meetings have been useless. They have their own agenda and believe me lake harbor will be no longer before long.

    My reply: Again what meetings do you refer to? When? Who was present? Of course they have their own agenda, trying to provide habitat to waterfowl in south Florida. If you think their agenda is to provide you with your own private duck club, then you are living in a dream world.


    Until they can prove it otherwise, Wildcat and Darkwing Duck don’t rank up in the list of “creditable” waterfowl people. IMHO.


    Busta
     
  4. Mehrenfl

    Mehrenfl Senior Refuge Member

    Messages:
    189
    Joined:
    Sep 5, 2002
    Location:
    South Florida
    Ok,now girls quite your fussing. Instead of arguing of whom did what in the past, how about looking to see what we can do in the future. I know I have got together numerous times with concerned hunters and we have tried to get something done, but I am willing to try it again. Any others?
     
  5. darkwing duck

    darkwing duck Senior Refuge Member

    Messages:
    169
    Joined:
    Sep 4, 2002
    Location:
    on my airboat in the marsh
    Busta why dont you become the NEW chairman of a committee to oversee the goings on of Lake Harbor? Show me some credibility on your end. I have yet to see nothing burt complaints and such. PUT UP or shut up......................
     
  6. Fyrestorm

    Fyrestorm Guest

    This is true............I know for a fact many people have tried to help out with LH. Jamie is great friend but it is tough for him to manage LH from Fellesmere.

    Busta............you seem like a guy that has alot of knowledge on issues. You also seem to have a chip on your sholder. Use your knowledge to help out instead of trying to prove people wrong or search for creditability issues. The Delta State Chapter has volunteered many hours to the state. We are a concerned group of hunters that are spreading the word and mission of Delta. We have some of the finest Waterfowl Biologists in the world in which we consult with on issues. It doesn't matter how many degrees our people hold. This is not a contest. Our organization has a great relationship with the FWC Waterfowl section. You need to focus some of your energy volunteering. You will not make a difference sitting on your puter searching for creditability.

    Are you ready to make a difference?????
     
  7. wildcat

    wildcat Senior Refuge Member

    Messages:
    332
    Joined:
    Apr 1, 2001
    Location:
    Treasure Coast, Fl
    Sorry, But I'm sure Jamie talks to alot of people and cant remember everyone. Myself and DuckanJR spoke with him about lake harbor at great length while buildling Mottled duck traps at T.M Goodwin.


    Sorry but your absolutely wrong again.

    Here is an Excerpt from The CMP (conceptual management plan) for the Lake Harbor Waterfowl Management Area:

    A. Water Level Management

    " It will be the responsibility of the Grantee (Okeelanta Sugar Corp.) to flood, maintain, and dewater the fields as needed for the culture of rice, crawfish and WILDLIFE HABITAT MANAGEMENT. "

    The Grantee (Okeelanta Sugar Corp.) is also repsonsible for:

    B: Rice Production
    C: Crawfish Production


    Obviously your didnt understand my statement. So I will disect it for you to comprehend.

    The only money DU has spent on LH is the 28,000 dollars used to build the water control structures in the begining of the project. What I meant about the agreement with DU and FWC is that if FWC ever decided to pull out of the lake harbor project they would think twice about it because of the agreement that stands with DU and the fact that FWC would have to pay the money back plus extra. That way we do not lose another public hunting area and wintering waterfowl habitat.

    I also fully understand how the MARSH project works and how hunting is not guaranteed on every DU project. That decision is usually left up to the owner or manager of the land.


    I am fully aware of the Thalia " Fire Flag " problem at Lake Harbor. And I'm currently aware of the new management technique they are usuing to correct it. basically all they are doing to correct it is to not flood the field so early and disk the area up until regualr season. Unfortunetly we lose the ability to hunt early teal, but we gain a little bit more quality field for regular season. They say they must do this because they dont have the manpower or the resources to have it controlled by early teal. Like Darkwing stated before people have volunteered to work on the problem but have been turned down.

    As far as the ratoon crop goes, You say you have never hunted lake harbor so how would you know what the field and food conditions look like on a yearly basis during waterfowl season. Anyone here that hunts it can tell you that the Ratoon crop doesnt hold up very long. As far as the millet goes. It didn't seem to make much significant improvement this year.

    Well. Anything that restricts the birds ability to feed seems to be tood deep for me. Puddle ducks can only feed down half the length of their body. For example I have seen the impoundments at LH get to be waist deep at times. Now anyone with common sense can tell you that puddle ducks cannot feed in that depth of water especially if the food source is at the bottom. I dont care how much Millet and rice is there.


    I can tell you that Rice and Millet are not as beneficial nutrionally to waterfowl than native vegetation like Smartweeds, Duckweeds, coontail or also aqautic invertabrates.

    If you factor in the low availibility of food plus the hunting pressure the area recieves it is quite obivious why the harvest rate there has been poor these last few years.

    The only one losing credibility here is you. And as far as empty facts go, the only person that has presented them is you. You basically came straight out and called me a liar, which I dont appreciate. Unfortunetly for you Im sitting in front of a stack of information about Lake Harbor that I have studied front to back. I have the Conceptual Management Plan for lake harbor along with the contract with DU and several user agreements between FWC and Okeelanta. Not to mention 15 or 20 pages of harvest data.

    Continued...........
     
  8. wildcat

    wildcat Senior Refuge Member

    Messages:
    332
    Joined:
    Apr 1, 2001
    Location:
    Treasure Coast, Fl
    Continued.......

    Since you obviously have never hunted there and do not understand how it works let me map it out for you.

    The current hunt system does encourage slob hunters and skybusters. (1) there is absolutely no cover out there except for the occasional maiden cane or thalia on the edges of the field. People stand out in the middle of the field like its a dove shoot. This usually means that birds will flare or not get close enough to decoy and then (guess what happens) people start to sky bust. The area is very small so the pressure pushes the birds out quick.


    Whats the solution to this?? Possibly leave some cover, make some permanent hunt stations that you had to hunt within a certain distance from (and enforce it), etc. Im sure if we sat down and thought about it a better situation would be thought of than the one currently out there. There also needs to be some public education. The FWC duck hunting workshops need to be promoted at these places. The LH brochure needs to cover hunter etiquette a little bit better. The overall hunting experience is directly affected by the conduct of many individuals. Especially since the area is so small.

    No one suggested it be a private duck club. In fact I only hunt it once a year and I know Darkwing and the guys who have volunteered to work on it dont really hunt it at all. Why do wee care then?? Because we know it was and could be a great place to hunt and want to see it be a great hunting spot for all the other hunters out there.

    Not everyone can call in at the current call in time. Apparently the call in system isnt that fair because many of the same people were getting in this whole year and I know a bunch that didnt get in at all.

    Why not go to a write in system. That way everyone will know what their hunt days are before the season even starts. Also it will leave the opportunity for the permits to be transferred ahead of time if someone doesnt want it or wants to trade with someone else.

    Everyone can put a stamp on a piece of paper and mail it in. Not everyone can dial a hundred times for two hours every week of the season trying to get in for one hunt.


    Your absolutely right. I have all the facts right in front of me. If you think these facts are incorrect and empty then you need to call up several FWC commissioners and call them liars because they have their signatures on all of these papers.

    Busta Drake...... Currently losing credibility at the speed of a Tomahawk Missle
     
  9. darkwing duck

    darkwing duck Senior Refuge Member

    Messages:
    169
    Joined:
    Sep 4, 2002
    Location:
    on my airboat in the marsh
    Busta if you feel so strongly about this, P.M. me with your phone # and lets you and all the guys that are concerned about this place meet and do something about it. This board is great for talk now lets see some action:)
     
  10. southFLjay

    southFLjay New Member

    Messages:
    17
    Joined:
    Sep 5, 2002
    Location:
    south florida
    i think the lake harbor issuse is a up hill battle at best
    if there is a meeting i will be there
    hope everyone else will too
    i know for a fact that the people comminting on this issue are some of the few that really do show up
    hope to see you there busta drake
     

Share This Page