Other views: Hunter Pressure Concept best compromise for all
The Jan. 29 letter from Connie Krapp is the latest installment of misinformation from those wishing to exploit North Dakota's hunting resources at all costs and expenses. Krapp, who operates an outfitter business catered towards nonresident h...
The Jan. 29 letter from Connie Krapp is the latest installment of misinformation from those wishing to exploit North Dakota's hunting resources at all costs and expenses. Krapp, who operates an outfitter business catered towards nonresident hunters, has greatly mischaracterized the Hunter Pressure Concept and the goals of sportspersons who support it as a compromise on the contentious waterfowl issue.
Conspiracy! The truth is that HPC was developed by the North Dakota Game and Fish in response to the Governor's (not sportspersons groups') request to develop some innovative, permanent solutions to this difficult issue. Of the concepts developed, sportspersons gravitated towards HPC, even though it produced nonresident numbers higher than some of the other concepts and higher than past sportspersons' poles have indicated as tolerable. HPC was favored because of its logic and fairness for all parties involved, and its true compromise quality.
How can you argue against a system that matches hunter numbers with anticipated hunting opportunities, so that all participants have an opportunity to experience a quality hunt? Further, it's a permanent solution, that self-adjusts based upon wetland conditions and resident use, which made it attractive so as to put behind us the political and emotional blood-letting this issue has spawned for the last several years.
Loopholes/manipulation! The HPC, in part, uses statistical sampling of resident and nonresident hunters to determine a cap for any particular year, and opponents would have you believe resident sportspersons will go out of their way to cook the books. Nonresidents, on their own or at the behest of outfitters, could also manipulate the HPC by under-reporting harvest. We're confident that all waterfowl hunters, regardless of their home zip code, will act like adults in the future just as they have in the past.
Anti-nonresident/anti-tourism! At the end of the day, the goal of North Dakotans should be to maximize all that a quality hunting resource means to all of North Dakota. This invaluable asset brings important seasonal dollars to rural North Dakota and keeps and attracts many thousand residents and their year-round dollars. The focus should be on balance and sustainability, so that North Dakota remains a desired tourism destination and a desired state of residency. This should be true for all types of hunting, but when it comes to waterfowl, balance and sustainability is what HPC is all about. The numbers of waterfowl only partly contribute to quality hunting.
A two-mile beach occupied by a million people is less enjoyable than a half-mile beach occupied by 50,000 people. Even in periods of high waterfowl numbers, over-crowding and excessive pressure greatly degrades quality hunting (as we're hearing from an increasing number of nonresidents who have hunted for many years) and prematurely pushes birds out of state, thereby reducing hunting opportunities for everyone.
Sportspersons hold no hatred towards nonresident hunters and fully appreciate their contribution to the North Dakota economy. We, however, also favor a resolution that recognizes our contribution to the North Dakota economy and encourages us (and others like us) to be North Dakota residents.
I also ask you to contact your senators at 1-888-635-3447, but urge a DO-PASS on 2048 (HPC). Let's sustain and maximize all the quality hunting asset means to all North Dakotans, today and for all future generations.
Bueide is a Fargo attorney.