Author Topic: Article on hunt farms  (Read 1860 times)


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Article on hunt farms
« on: May 10, 2011, 02:00:59 PM »
Not sure who saw this in the Calgary sun, article about hunt farms by Will Verboven Original Article Here

It’s probably safe to assume most citizens are blissfully unaware about how and where elk meet their demise. But that hasn’t stopped the Alberta government from deciding that it knows best about how and where these animals are to die, or not.

Granted, governments have powers to make such decisions, but one hopes they are based on something tangible like science, economics, safety, health or perhaps that most elusive of all political qualities — common sense.

But, alas, our government has ignored all the tangibles and succumbed to those favourite tactics of lobby groups — emotion and political correctness. It all involves Bill 11, which reinforces a ban on hunt farms made in 2002. I expect most readers have no idea what a hunt farm is and why the government wanted to ban them. Hunt farms are agricultural operations where farmed elk can be shot by hunters on private land for a fee. Essentially, it’s no different than hunters buying a licence from the government and shooting elk on public land. From the elk’s perspective, it makes no real difference — it gets killed in either case.

However, some folks ignore the elk’s simple perspective and want to apply human emotional responses to elk. That’s a somewhat futile concept, as elk do not usually engage in philosophic deliberations on how they wish to die or where, except maybe those belligerent elk that roam Banff townsite as if they want to die there.

But as it turns out, how and where elk die is a big issue to the good old boys at the Alberta Fish and Game Association. It’s not that the group doesn’t want the elk to die; they are, after all, a hunters’ group. It’s just that they want to see them die in a certain way. They have painted a misleading perception of hunt farms as the infamous “shooting ducks in a barrel” scenario. Most folks figure that conjured image is a terrible fate for the noble and majestic elk. Although, indiscriminately trapping, poisoning and killing rats and other less handsome nuisance animals is OK by the public, but I digress.

The Alberta Fish and Game Association states that hunting should involve the fair chase principle, the idea being that an animal should have the opportunity to escape the pursuit of the hunter — something they claim can’t be done on hunt farms. But that principle is a human emotional response and not an elk perception. I believe if an elk thought about a choice, it would probably choose a quick death, something that is more likely to occur in an abattoir or on a hunt farm. I do not believe an elk would choose the fair chase principle: relentlessly chased and traumatized by hunters (perhaps in vehicles and with hunting dogs), being shot at a long distance with laser-directed (they now exist) high-powered rifles, perhaps being only wounded and left to die a horrible slow death or being disembowelled alive by opportunistic predators. Such a possible fate makes a quick demise at an abattoir or hunt farm seem a lot more humane.

The fish and game association alleged that Bill 11 was just a devious plot to secretly allow hunt farms in Alberta. It is not, but I suspect that unofficially, the government knows the prohibition of hunt farms in Alberta is unfair and unwarranted. This is particularly true when such operations are allowed to operate in Saskatchewan and a number of U.S. states. The hunt farm prohibition is nothing more than a politically correct reaction to pressure from the media and disparate lobby groups.

The folly of the prohibition is particularly obvious when Alberta elk ranchers sell prime antlered specimens to hunt farms outside of Alberta. That makes a mockery of the critics’ position on the hunt farm issue, as it should. The fact is the government prohibition does not stop Alberta elk from being used for hunt farm purposes. It would be better to address that reality and put into place a hunt farm regulatory regime in Alberta that serves the best interests of farmed elk and their owners. Hunt farms are a legitimate way to market domestic elk and should be encouraged and not banned by government.

Will Verboven is editor of Alberta Farmer.
© Copyright (c) The Calgary Herald

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Re: Article on hunt farms
« Reply #1 on: May 10, 2011, 02:36:00 PM »
What a goof ball. Obvious this man would sell his soul to make a buck and he expects everyone else to follow him.


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Re: Article on hunt farms
« Reply #2 on: May 10, 2011, 07:46:36 PM »
You should see some of the Verboven rantings over the past couple of years. I used to worry about his influence but aside from a few hard-core nutjobs, most people see him for what he is: a blundering idiot.


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Re: Article on hunt farms
« Reply #3 on: May 22, 2011, 09:38:51 PM »
Wow.  Hard to believe someone cant understand the difference between hunting and killing.  He must own an elk farm or has some friends that own them.


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Re: Article on hunt farms
« Reply #4 on: May 22, 2011, 10:06:35 PM »
He's an IDIOT. Proved that back in the open spaces days.


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Re: Article on hunt farms
« Reply #5 on: May 25, 2011, 12:00:29 PM »
There's been a big surge in the pro-hunt farms as of late.  Lots of garbage in the media in support of them.  There's a billboard or two on the QEII depicting a 'hard working family' raising elk.