NYHCA article for American Cooner, Full Cry, Rabbit Hunter; Hound and Horn March 2010
New York Houndsmen Conservation Association
"Houndsmen Helping Houndsmen"
Emily S. Plishner, zone 4 representative
P.O Box 63
West Kill, NY 12492
518 989 6454
Sorry I missed my deadline last month--it fell during the holidays, and you know how that is, even though Christmas time will seem a distant memory by the time you read this. With this being the March issue, remember that the annual NY Houndsmen banquet should be on your calendar for the last Saturday in March, the 27th. As of this writing, the plans haven't been finalized, but we expect to return to Katy and Karl's in Camden, same as last year. Watch your mail for a newsletter from Chuck Struble with details. If you've let your membership lapse or want to join for the first time, memberships can be paid up on the spot on the day of the event, but we would like to get a rough head count in advance, so let Tim Cain know if you think you'll be there. You can contact Tim at 2041 Sherburne Rd., Walworth, NY 14568; 315-986-1321; or email@example.com .
January was a pretty busy month for your officers. We had our annual board of directors meeting at Gene Van Deusen's house on the ninth. Issues discussed included re-election of officers, possible speakers for the banquet, and our legislative agenda for the year. We pretty much decided that our legislative plate is full with our Dogs at Large proposal A825/S82, currently in their respective Environmental Conservation Committees; fighting the Puppy Mill proposals redefining "pet dealer' and placing onerous record-keeping and inspection requirements, and adding the ban on removing collars that was approved by the Conservation Council last year, so we won't be requesting support from the Conservation Council for anything new this year. In support of developing the wording and gaining sponsors for the ban on collar removal, we need to document actual cases of dog collars being removed or tampered with, with names, dates and a brief description of the circumstances. As I will be taking the lead on this issue, please send information about incidents involving your hounds or leads to incidents involving other peoples' hounds to me so I can present a convincing case that this legislation is needed and get us a sponsor for it.
While we had enough activists attending the directors' gathering to crowd Gene's dining table, we could use additional officers and ideas and especially some youthful energy, perspective, and online skills. Volunteers for any leadership roles will be warmly welcomed. If you think you might want to help out, call Gene, get in touch with me, or just come to the banquet and express an interest to any existing officer or zone rep.
On the 12th, the Houndsmen sent a delegation to the well-attended Sportmen's Awareness Day rally in the Legislative Office Building in Albany, including Gene Van Deusen, Chuck Struble, Herm Flowers, Kendra Trammel, and myself. We had a table in the lobby to dispense information about the sport of hunting with hounds and took turns visiting various assemblymen and senators in their offices upstairs with talking points in support of the dogs at large law, against the intrusive puppy mill proposals, and generally explaining the economic benefits to the state of hound hunting, including attracting competitive events. Our table attracted a lot of interest from the other sportsmen in attendance and we signed up a few new members. I got to meet a few members of the mounted fox hunting community that have recently reached out to join forces with us.
Herm Flowers and Chuck Struble manning the Houndsmen table at Sportsman's Day in Albany
The packed "well" of the legislative office building for Sportsmen's Awareness Day in Albany on January 12
Since then various officers have visited Assemblywoman Francine DelMonte of Niagara Falls, chairwoman of the Agriculture Committee,and Senator Darrel Aubertine of Watertown, her counterpart on the Senate Agriculture Committee, regarding the pet dealer/puppy mill issues; and Senator Antoine Thomson, Deputy Minority Whip and chair of the Senate EnCon committee. We would like to encourage all houndsmen to call or write to Assemblyman Robert K. Sweeney of Suffolk County on Long Island, chairman of the Assembly EnCon committee to encourage support of the Dogs at Large legislation, A825, and encourage his help speeding its way back to the Senate floor. Assemblyman Sweeney can be reached in Albany at 518 455 5787, firstname.lastname@example.org , or room 605 of the Legislative Office building in Albany 12248. If you have friends or know any houndsmen or other sportsmen in eastern Long Island, calls from his constituents would be especially helpful.
Even when the law is on our side, houndsmen can't rely on local law enforcement being aware of the rules. The Houndsmen recommend carrying a copy of the hunting guide
issued with your hunting license, and available free at all locations that sell hunting licenses. Here's another example of a case that could be viewed as hunter harassment. A landowner tried to interfere with the hunt, and the state trooper involved did not help matters. Luckily, the DEC guy called in did side with the houndsmen.
Three houndsmen were running hounds on coyotes in western NY on January 19. According to one of them, "We were tracking a dog with the GPS next to a very busy road when a land owner started yelling at my buddy. He was very belligerent and told my buddy we were trespassing. I told him to not mind the land owner when the dog could be seen from the road. So I started running down the edge of the road paralleling the dog when the landowner started yelling again. So now, three of us hunters are on the edge of the road waiting for the inevitable...and then the Trooper pulled up.
"First was he said that our dog was trespassing. I informed him of the law [dogs can't trespass, only people can], which he didn't like, so then he said that the dogs weren't under control, and again I informed him of the law [this is also in the hunting guide]. Next he checks our drivers licenses and guns to make sure they're unloaded and the DEC pulls up. He checks our hunting licenses and takes our info. Now, the trooper is going to talk to the land owner, but he first asks if the dog has a license. The dog's owner replied yes, but that it was not on the dog as it would get ripped off by the brush. The trooper didn't like that answer and said that we need to find collars that they won't fall off of.
"Now the trooper goes and talks the property owner for about 20-25 minutes. The three of us [the hunting party] were talking to the DEC who was pretty cool... The trooper finally comes back and has a conference with the DEC officer. Now they come back and talk to us.
"The land owner said that we were on his property. I look at the DEC officer and said lets go for a walk so you can find my tracks in the snow. There were no track to be found.
"At this point I asked how is it OK for a person to flat out lie to the cops and not be held accountable. The trooper mumbles out something to the effect of it's hard to prove hunter harassment and changes the subject.
"After some small talk we left to catch up with the rest of the hunting party. I guess the same property owner had some issues during deer season with a guy who had a black truck that looked like mine. What upset me the most was the lack of effort to go after the land owner who flat out lied to the trooper."
His takeaway from the incident: "Be sure you know the dog laws and have a copy with you and make sure your tags are on your back when tracking, because they will try to get you."
The DEC's preliminary Hunting Related Shooting Incidents report for 2009 is out. There were 26 incidents reported and investigated. There was not a single incident involving hare, rabbit, fox, coyote, raccoon or bear hunters. Bobcat hunters didn't show up in the data. I guess that means that no incidents were reported involving houndsmen. Overall, the trend continues to improve, with shooting incidents down again. Thanks again to all the houndsmen and other sportsmen who teach hunter education courses. I'm sure the improving safety trend has everything to do with your efforts.
While houndsmen weren't the victims in any shooting incidents last year, people do continue to shoot our hounds, even when their owners and handlers are doing everything by the book. The latest incident took place in Canandaigua on January 16 at around 9:00 a.m. Three guys were coyote hunting when one of their hounds was shot. They were hunting on land on which they had permission to hunt, and a third hound was cut in to the two that had already jumped a coyote when three shots rang out, followed by a fourth which provoked a screaming howl from the third hound, Daisy. The shooter turned out to be the landowner, out for a walk with his .357 magnum. Daisy's owner scooped her up and rushed her to the vet while the other two hunters tried to get more info from the shooter, who retreated to his vehicle which was parked on a dead end. The other two hunters blocked his exit with their vehicle. Luckily for all concerned, the shooter eventually manned up and worked matters out with the hound's owner over the phone without the help of law enforcement, although not without first accusing Daisy of chasing deer. The shooter is paying the expensive vet bills in full and has also given the hunting party indefinite privileges on his thousand acre tract. I am pleased to say that the houndsmen involved kept calmer than I could have if it had been my hound, although things might have been different had Daisy failed to survive the incident. As things are, Daisy is up and around again and should recover fully, much to the relief of the owner's two year old son, who is very attached to her. Who knows what was going on in the shooter's head? If he'd been thinking, he would have realized that hound hunters taking coyotes are helping the deer population.
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Daisy on a better day
Marc Murdock, of Ogdensburg, NY lost a Walker dog on the last weekend in November. Mark reports that "I let a friend take my Luke dog out. He dropped him in behind Ritchville, NY, off of RT 11. He thinks someone stole Luke." If anyone has seen Luke, please call Marc at 315-393-3266.
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Buck Creek Stylish Luke, PKC CH,AKC CNC with 2 wins,UKC 4th RQE
PKC is the only kennel club that had any events in NY during December or January. Marc Murdock, Luke's distressed owner, is the contact person for the club at Lisbon, which held an event on December 4, 2009. There were seven entries. The split was $52.50, between Sun, handled by Jim Carvill, and Queen, handled by Alan Winch. The Lisbon club's scheduled December 30 was canceled: "Too cold and too much snow," Marc posted on the PKC board. Welcome to New York!
We are pleased to hear that the Gorham club held an event on December 2, and Jeremy Thomas was strong enough to hunt and be in on the $45 split with Storm! Not to take anything away from the other dogs in on the split: Sissy, with 275+, owner Jeff Cummings, handler, Kendra Trammel; Cane, 350 circle owner/handler Criss Shores; Storm, 100- , owner/handler Jeremy Thomas. There were nine dogs entered. Herm Flowers says, "Although it was only a $45 cast win it was much more than that for Jeremy. Earlier this year after his accident he told me his goal was to be back handling a dog in the hunts by December. Jeremy, I know I am not alone in congratulating you on achieving your goal.Just like the stories of old, you're still tuff!"
There's been a bit of a controversy over the PKC state hunt date again this year. Last year, it was moved to May, but it seems to have reverted to April again this year. However, between the closing of coon training season--to allow the kits to grow up--on April 15, and the problems for northerners, who can't get their dogs in shape on time if the hunt is in April, when the snow is often too deep to get into their usual hunting spots, no one is too happy. If you've ever been in the PKC top 24, please make your feelings known in time to iFur prices are still pretty low, but a January 3 sale in Ballston Spa holds out some hope that prices have hit bottom and may even begin to be recovering a bit. Two bobcats went for $65 each. Coon (103) averaged $8.06, with the high $30.00; coyotes (39) averaged $13.87, with the top price $22.50; gray fox (36) averaged $18.91, with a high of $23.50; red fox(57) averaged $16.25, with a high of $28.50. Ken Johnson has been collaborating with a taxidermist friend to tan the hides and get higher prices that way.
Last but not least Mike Effland, from the Nine Mile Swamp in Sangerfield, lost his fine coyote hound Yacker just before the end of last year. Yacker was hit by a vehicle on the road, while hunting. We all know this could happin any time we run our hounds, but that doesn't help much when it does happen. Mike says, "I can take comfort in knowing my dog didn't die on a chain. He knew what it was like to be a hound doing what hounds where meant to do."
The Yacker hound came from Gene Molyneaux and his hunting group. Gene says, "all the Guys I hunt with have missed him terrible and knew just what ol' Yack could do. Wished we had bred him to my Gyp. I hope [Mike] can find a coyote hound that can fill his collar."
Mike had only owned Yacker for 3 years but says, "it would not be a strech to say Yack was in on at least 130 yotes" in that time. He had been a little gun-shy when Mike acquired him from another hunting buddy, but worked on that and got Yack over that.
"Yack was line bred (Pinedale) on the top and predominantly Action Cat, going back to Rough Wood Spike, on the bottom... To me, he was priceless."
RIP Yacker: July 25, 2001 -- Dec. 30, 2009
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On a happier note, Ken Johnson of Tully had a litter ready to go, and offered Mike the pick of his litter for free to help fill the void. Ken has been having heart problems. Seems to me like there's nothing wrong with his heart--it's as big as they come! Anyway, Ken told Mike that there's one hound from 30 years ago that he still misses and imagines he hears on the track occasionally. That hound was named "Bones," so Mike is going to name is new pup "Bones" in honor of that hound that meant so much to Ken.
Call me, write me, or email me with your upcoming events, event results, new titles, upcoming litters and other news and pictures. I especially need to hear from you beagle people! No matter what you chase with your hounds, NYHCA has your back in Albany. Every houndsman and houndswoman in NY should be a member. To join, visit our website at http://www.nyhoundsmen.org for more information, or just send a check with your contact info to NYHCA; P.O. Box 72; Walworth, NY; 14568. Dues are $10 for a full year for individuals; $5 for youth 16 or under at the time you join; family $15; hound or hunting club/organization $25.
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