Game Wardens spend less than half their time policing hunting and fishing

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Earlier this year I asked the Maine Warden Service for the latest data on how they spend their time. Unfortunately, the most recent report was issued in 2013. Nothing since then. So that’s the report I obtained from them. The 53 page report is interesting and includes information about where their money comes from, trends in registrations and license sales, calls for service, and summaries of the work in each district.

But it’s how they spend their time that was of most interest to me. Here is that information:

 28.5%   Enforcement of hunting, trapping, and wildlife laws and rules

19.5%    Enforcement of fishing laws and rules

14.9%    Administration/Reports

10.9%   Training

8.4%      Enforcement of watercraft laws and rules

Can a Wolf and a Pig Be Friends?

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Good question! And no, this is not about politics!

Kevin McShane’s new book, Can a Wolf and a Pig Be Friends?, is very entertaining for both kids and adults who will enjoy discovering the many ‘hidden’ references in the background of illustrator Kristina Z. Young’s wonderful artwork. I chuckled when I saw “Wolf Blitzer” and the CNN news truck.

A Fairy Godmother intervenes to try to save the pig but, realistically, she says “You can’t blame the wolf… He’s just doing what wolves do. Wolves chase pigs in stories.” Well, in real life too!

You’ll have to get the book to find out if the Godmother is successful. I will say the ending is probably very realistic.

Legislative proposals for the 2017 session

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Here's a list of ideas I have for legislation in the upcoming session, I'd appreciate your thoughts on these, which can be emailed to be at georgesmithmaine@gmail.com. Thanks!

Exotic Animals: Require permits for all non-native animals and require notification of the Maine Warden Service and any neighbors within range of an exotic animal that escapes.

Feral Cats: Forbid the release of feral cats into the wild.

Hatcheries: Organize a Hatchery Commission to study all issues and make recommendations, before spending more than $100,000 to upgrade, expand, or repair existing hatcheries. This bill will include a list of issues and questions for the Commission to tackle.

Fall Fishing: Expand catch-and-release fall fishing statewide to the month of October. Include a program like Montana’s that automatically closes waters when temperatures reach a certain high level.

Woman Who Speaks Tree by Linda Tatelbaum

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 Yes, Linda Tatelbaum loves trees. But the subtitle of her wonderful book, Woman Who Speaks Tree, “Confessions of a Tree Hugger,” tells you even more about her life.

I have to say that I thoroughly enjoyed this book. Linda’s life could be described as a contradiction: she’s a college professor and a back-to-the-land hippie who, with her husband Kal, lives in midcoast Maine where they built their home in 1977 with solar heat and great gardens.

“I still answer to the name of hippie,” she writes in the preface, “though I’ve also spent a career in college teaching while living this hard-earned organic life on the homestead we built in Maine.”

Animal welfare groups demand tougher protections for Canadian lynx

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In response to the federal listing of Lynx as threatened, Maine’s Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife restricted trapping in the Lynx’s region. But animal rights groups have been complaining ever since, especially about the decision by the feds to give Maine an incidental take permit, allowing a few Lynx to be accidentally captured. A lot of this battle has been fought in court.

In August 2015, wildlife and animal welfare groups, including the Center for Biological Diversity, Wildlife Alliance of Maine and the Animal Welfare Institute, sued the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service for allegedly failing to enforce rules protecting Canada lynx from being killed or injured.

State Museum and Library host evening focused on Maine sporting camps

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                 My book, titled Maine Sporting Camps, was published in May, with my hope that it will encourage readers to visit sporting camps on a regular basis for the very best outdoor experiences.

                On Wednesday night, November 16, at 6:30 pm, I’ll be talking about the book and the history of our sporting camps at the Maine State Library in Augusta, an event hosted by the Kennebec Historical Society. Beginning at 5:30 pm the state museum will be open so attendees can see their amazing exhibit of historical firearms. I do hope you can join us.

             

Great food and friendly staff at the Old Mill Pub in Skowhegan

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Skowhegan
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 George

                When you enter Maine from Quebec and ask for a restaurant recommendation, you’ll be told to stop at the Old Mill Pub in Skowhegan. Yes, they are well regarded all the way to the border!

                The Dore family purchased the pub four years ago, and two brothers and their wives work here. Eric Dore is the manager and spends a lot of time going up and down the stairs, delivering the food. His wife Sarah was our very friendly and professional server. Ben Dore is the kitchen manager and his wife Christin is a server and bartender.

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