Turkey fight ends; herrings; a gun nut

In what we hope will be the last attempt at an earlier spring turkey season start (first Saturday in April) anywhere in North Carolina, a N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission subcommitee voted not to consider the proposal that was unpopular with the N.C. National Wild Turkey Federation, WRC biologists, and following a staff study of the proposal that showed multiple potential problems.

We covered this fight in past issues and present a wrap-up sidebar that complements a turkey-hunting feature inside this issue.

What we cannot condone, however, were harrassing and inflammatory phone calls to the commissioner who proposed the early spring gobbler season in five southeastern counties in and adjacent to his wildlife district — calls his wife sometimes was the unfortunate recipient of while he was out of the house.

As your fourth-grade teacher probably told you, people can disagree without being disagreeable.


The N.C. Marine Fisheries Commission and the new executive director of the Division of Marine Fisheries deserve a pat on the back for a recent action that closed herring netting everywhere at the coast. The saltwater and brackish water ban joins a 10-month-old moratorium put in place by the N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission for inland rivers and streams last July 1.

Dr. Louis Daniel, the new DMF director, issued a March 2 proclamation that allows netting of bluebacks and alewives only by holders of a special herring license and then only in a small portion of the Chowan River for research purposes and to provide the Jamesville Herring Festival with enough fish to have a decent fry.

Whether or not the proclamation will help herrings recover from 20 years of overharvest is unknown. But at least the MFC finally allowed the DMF to do something positive for herrings.


Lord knows the Bush Administration has made errors, but sportsmen must agree it and its supporters in Congress have kept the anti-gun wolves away from the door — for a while.

Now that Congress has another majority party, anyone who uses firearms to hunt, target shoot or for personal protection once again may be an endangered species. Yes, another version of the sunsetted Clinton assault weapons ban is snaking its way toward a vote.

Rep. Carolyn McCarthy (D-NY) wants to reintroduce and expand the “Clinton” assault weapons ban — the ban that expired in 2004 and wasn’t renewed by Congress. This bill banned the manufacture of 10-round magazines and the importation and manufacture of numerous “military-style” semi-automatic rifles. That the Clinton bill had no discernible effect on crime was the reason Congress “sunsetted” the law 10 years after it was passed.

McCarthy reintroduced HR1022 to renew and expand this abusive legislation. Not only would she have the 10-round magazine restriction reinstated, she’d expand the description of banned firearms to the point any firearm originally designed as a military weapon would be banned from civilian use. This includes M-1, M-1 carbine, M-14, AR-15, AR-10 and virtually all semi-automatics with a military background/design (many deer and varmint guns).

It’s just another step toward banning privately-owned firearms.

About Craig Holt 1382 Articles
Craig Holt of Snow Camp has been an outdoor writer for almost 40 years, working for several newspapers, then serving as managing editor for North Carolina Sportsman and South Carolina Sportsman before becoming a full-time free-lancer in 2009.

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