More Bull Elk Tags for Landowners??

Discussion in 'Elk Hunting' started by buckfever, Feb 9, 2011.

  1. buckfever

    buckfever 12 pointer

    I wasn't at the meeting last week, but I've heard from some folks that were that Doug Hensley proposed increasing the number of bull elk Landowner Cooperator permits being issued to the landowners. I was told that Hensley openly proposed decreasing the land necessary to get a landowner coop. permit from 5000 acres to 1000 acres.

    If true, this would increase the number of landowner cooperator permits five-fold. If KDFWR currently issues 40 Landowner Cooperator bull elk tags to the various coal and timber companies that allow public access onto their land, that number would spike to 200 bull elk tags being controlled by the landowners. I actually don't know how many landowner cooperator permits are issued, but 40 seems like a fair estimate.

    On the other hand and to put this into perspective, the public lottery allows for 800 elk tags. Of those 800 tags, only 200 are issued for bull elk tags and the remaining 600 are for cow elk. I can't speak for all the sportsmen, but it stands to reason that 99.99% of sportsmen would rather draw a bull elk tag. In addition, the current set-up typically sends 10% of the lottery bull elk tags to non-resident hunters.

    At bottom, the resident sportsmen of this state are applying for 1 or 180 bull elk tags by participating in the lottery.

    It seems to me fundamentally wrong that KDFWR jumped through all these hoops to get elk here and trumpeted the benefits of this for the sportsmen of the state when now, the big coal companies are getting the lion's share of the bull elk tags. How can anyone, even Hensley, justify using the sportsman's dollars to bring elk here and then giving big shot coal/timber guys the windfall of a bunch of bull elk tags (200 bull elk tags), while the remaining 400,000 sportsman in the state are left the scraps of 180 bull elk tags.

    IMO, a good argument can be made that Hensley is intentionally steering the elk program to his big money coal/timber buddies, and he's screwing over the sportsmen.

    Am I missing something here? Am I wrong in my thinking? What do you guys think?
     
  2. Feedman

    Feedman Cyber-Hunter

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    Wow!!! This is not right. Why not give 200 more bull tags to the sportsmen of this state. They say the numbers are not there, now they are saying we give 200 more tags to these guys. Maybe this is why they reduced the number from 1000 tags to 800 so they could give the 200 tags to the coal/timber companies. I do appreciate that these companies open up their property and let the public hunt.
     
  3. slickhead slayer

    slickhead slayer 12 pointer

    I would be curious to know what his reasoning is?
    I can tell you that coal and timber companys MAIN reasoning for participating is for tax purposes, not the bull elk tag they receive. I would think you could increase acres without offering additional tags. Do we need that many more additional acres?
     
  4. 1wildcatfan

    1wildcatfan 12 pointer

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    before getting all worked up, i think i would wait for the proposals (if there are any) to be published.
     
  5. buckfever

    buckfever 12 pointer

    The landowner cooperator agreements were all short-term in nature. Once the elk were here and the agreements expired, the coal companies had KDFWR over a barrel.

    Does anybody really believe that KDFWR didn't know this going into the original stocking program when they were making arrangements to populate private land with game?

    Think about it. Suppose Texas decided to stock the King Ranch with 10,000 Kudu and entered a 5 year agreement to give the ranch owners a number of tags annually so long as they let the public hunt their land.

    Is anybody really that short-sighted to believe that owners wouldn't leverage their ownership if Texas wanted the public to continue to hunt after the 5 year period was up?

    Of course, KDFWR knew this day was coming. Hensley knew it all along too. Now, Hensley can lobby for more tags for the private coal/timber company landowners under the guise that "KDFWR has to do it to insure that the public sportsman has a place to hunt." It's a shell game. Hensley's got the elk program exactly where he wants it, and now, he's going to make sure that he and his buddies have bull elk tags far into the future.
     
  6. carnivore

    carnivore 12 pointer

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    When is this Hensley fella up for "re-election", or better yet is what is the process to remove a man in his position from office?
    I think that people like him are use to operating in this manner without real consequences. However, the Elk program has a broader audience than what they are used to dealing with in a local political setting. If all of this info is true he will not last long.
     
    Last edited: Feb 9, 2011
  7. buckfever

    buckfever 12 pointer

    Why would I wait for the published proposals when I already know what Hensley is lobbying for?

    Originally, the landowner cooperator's permits were reserved for 10,000 acres. Hensley went in and unilaterally changed it to 5,000 acres right before the vote. Now, some 10 yrs later, he wants to change it to 1,000 acres.

    How could any commissioner stand there and make the argument that they've got to do "something" as though this issue wasn't completely forseeable? Either Hensley's an idiot or he's intentionally throwing the public sportsmen under the bus. It's as simple as that.

    Anybody that couldn't see this one coming from the get-go is a blind fool.

    Watch what happens. At the next meeting, the final proposal will be a compromise for 2500 acres, and we'll hear Gassett claim that they can't lower it to 1000 acres because of his concerns about the sportsmen of the state. It'll be similar to the elk to Mizzou deal where KDFWR claims that it's just "paying it forward".
     
  8. trust me

    trust me Troubled Loner

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    We'll see how it plays out, but he's one of those characters that I wouldn't bet against if I wanted to keep my money.

    It won't be a surprise to read a full account of this deal in a 2 page article in the Lex paper sometime soon.
     
  9. Buck_Nasty

    Buck_Nasty 12 pointer

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    And to think I just spent lunch with another member discussing the current downward spiral of the Elk situation. Then come back to find out even more back scratching is going on. But again, I'm not surprised with everything else that has went on. I can't wait to see the logic behind this proposed move. I bet it will be a doozey.
     
  10. buckfever

    buckfever 12 pointer

    The logic will be: "The landowners are thinking about stopping the public from hunting on their land. In order to insure that the public has a right to hunt our majestic elk herd, we must give the landonwers more elk tags."

    Good argument so long as you're stupid enough to believe that the sportsman's sportsmen running KDFWR didn't understand from the beginning that once the elk were physically on the coal company's property, they held all the cards.

    As an aside, I wonder what the Vegas line is on this proposition: Does the Appalachian Wildlife Foundation have a contract with the Department where KDFWR is paying AWF to improve the elk habitat on private coal company land?

    I'm a pessimistic sort, but in the wake of the recent outcry over the issuance of elk tags to insider groups at KDFWR, I'll also throw out the likelihood that the AWF will be performing "habitat improvement" on private coal company land in the near future, and THOSE projects will be paid for by the windfall it gets from auctioning/selling off its 3 commissioner's bull elk tags.
     
  11. 1wildcatfan

    1wildcatfan 12 pointer

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    raised n Bullitt Co.

    you may be dead nuts on target. maybe i'm the only one, but i fall into the "blind fool" category. i don't have your knowledge or insight to the situation. i for one would like to have something more official on this than hearsay or speculation before forming my opinion.
     
  12. buckfever

    buckfever 12 pointer

    OK, you're not a believer, fine. There's plenty of folks that are the same way.

    I'm not sure what you mean by "hearsay and speculation". Do you mean that Hensley didn't say what 3 different people told me he said, or that you don't believe that KDFWR would give more tags to the coal company landowners?

    If it's the latter, what exactly would satisfy you and how much proof would you need? In my mind, having a KDFWR commissioner like Hensley lobby for something is probably a pretty long step towards making it happen.

    Even if the private coal companies ending public access after a couple of years of public hunting was something that KDFWR didn't think about at the time the elk were being introduced and now has to deal with, are you OK with it? Just my opinion, but if KDFWR didn't have a plan for this contingency at the time Ky's elk restoration was first introduced, I'd call that complete incompetence, because it tells me that it didn't matter what happened, this KDFWR administration was going to make its mark on the world by having majestic elk in Kentucky - Come hell or high water. Heck, the problem with KDFWR stocking elk on private land was openly discussed on this very forum by a host of folks, and we all know that KDFWR follows this forum.

    Really, is there anything short of a written confession by Hensley that would convince you that he knew this day would come?

    Just out of curiosity, how about the 3 elk tags going to the Appalachian Wildlife Foundation? Am I just a "malcontent" or a "Department basher", because I have a problem with it? Am I one of those guys that should stop playng "armchair biologist" and let the Dept "do their job". After all, when guys like me complain, isn't it more likely the "legislature will start sticking their into the sportsmen's affairs"?

    If you want to give them the benefit of the doubt, that's your prerogative, but my benefits are all used up. :)
     
  13. Buck_Nasty

    Buck_Nasty 12 pointer

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    From what you have learned, buckfever, was there any talks or mention about a cap on how many tags a company could get? I'm gonna go out on a limb here and say, NO, there wasn't any discussion of caps on how many tags an a company could get. The reason I'm asking is because I know of a large timber company who receive either six or eight landowner tags at the current 5,000 acre restriction. If this number is brought down to 1,000 and say for instance the company I'm making reference to is getting six tags currently, which means they have donated 30,000 acres....would the company now receive 30 tags if the move is made to decrease the land volume per tag?

    If not, than I wouldn't be afraid to say 200 tags is not going to be middle of the pack in how many it would increase the numbers.

    I read some information this morning from the RMEF that stated when Elk were first placed in Kentucky, the tag numbers should have been 1,500 a year by 2008. I've not seen that.
     
    Last edited: Feb 9, 2011
  14. maxcam

    maxcam 12 pointer

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    Hmmmmm...... 200 landowner bull elk tags......

    Buckfever are these particular tags transferable....? In other words, could a landowner sell these tags to an agent who could then resell them to the public?
     
  15. grouseguy

    grouseguy Cyber-Hunter

    Thanks to SB64 (unless repealed in this legislative session) ... Hensley will be "termed out" of the commission THIS summer.

    It would appear that he plans to "rape and pillage" as much as possible in the next 4-5 months and go out in a blaze of "MAJESTIC" glory.
     
  16. buckfever

    buckfever 12 pointer

    Good Question!

    . . . .and the answer is YES, they most certainly are transferrable.

    BN - I don't know about a "cap" or anything along those lines. I'm just telling you what I heard Hensley openly state at the commish meeting.
     
  17. 1wildcatfan

    1wildcatfan 12 pointer

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    raised n Bullitt Co.
    the landowners can do whatever they want with their tags. give away, sell, auction, throw away, etc.

    the tags are only good/can only be used for the landowners piece of property, not the entire unit.
     
  18. maxcam

    maxcam 12 pointer

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    So a person with the necessary cash could buy the bull tags from the landowner and then sell a guided hunt on prime hunting turf to sell to the highest bidder....... WOW.....

    Not if but as soon as the next record shattering elk is harvest from Kentucky, there is going to be a lot of cabbage changing hands.......

    200 tags at say $10,000 a piece..... why thats a couple million bucks!
     
  19. Buck_Nasty

    Buck_Nasty 12 pointer

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    Some major pocket jingle to say the least.
     
  20. ResidentCombo

    ResidentCombo 6 pointer

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    The land for tags wasnt much of an issue when the elk were stocked, but thanks to SB 64's no net loss of hunting land requirement, this will only get worse!
     

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