Sunday, January 29th, 2023
Sunday, January 29th, 2023

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Sportsmen Since 1967

Minnesota Letters to the Editor: Disappointed in Whitewater WMA plan

I was disappointed to read about the lack of imagination in the DNR’s Whitewater Wildlife Management Area plan. The ideas mentioned include the old standbys – prescribed burns, invasive plant removal using herbicides, planting native prairie species, and reducing overall farmed acreage.

None of these ideas will build soil structure, sequester carbon, feed soil biology, improve plant and animal diversity, increase water infiltration, or reduce erosion as well as “mob grazing” would.

How do they think the rich prairie soils came to be? The soils that still sustain us were
created under the hooves of millions of grazers – primarily bison. With
their disappearance, the soil-building process has been shut down. The
best we have done is slow the degradation of our prairie soils. At
worst, we have all but killed them.

Why not partner with farmers who embrace regenerative practices? Instead of
allowing lazy grazing, which does more harm than good, why not lease
prairie land to those willing to practice seasonal mob grazing? There
are ranchers out there who want to do it the right way. Use these areas
as test plots, and see what happens.

Done correctly, what we can expect to see is lush growth of prairie forbs,
greatly improved infiltration of rainwater (which recharges streams and
wetlands), diverse cover, and nutrient-dense forage – in other words,
prime habitat.

To ignore partnering with nature is short-sighted. Nature is, and always
will be, the boss. To think that we can outsmart her is hubris on a
grand scale.

Mark Schultz, Bemidji

Logging can be a good thing for wildlife

I’ve read with great interest the numerous news stories regarding logging on
state wildlife management areas. To allow a forest to continue to grow
without disruption benefits only a few wildlife species to the detriment
of many others.

Take a walk through Nerstrand Big Woods State Park and you’ll see beautiful,
mature hardwood trees and lots of black dirt – no undergrowth and no
animals, except for a few birds.

I own 80 acres of mixed woodlands in central Minnesota. I hired a
forester and a logger to select-cut my woods three winters ago. I keep
meticulous notes on deer sightings and recorded 38 deer during the two
hunting seasons prior to logging.

During the two hunting seasons since logging, we’ve seen 151 deer, despite
spending 30% less time in the woods. We’ve also seen an explosion of
grouse and rabbits.

I’m a proponent of active land management and consider smart logging to be a vital tool to meet my goals.

Craig A. Doeden Apple Valley

Technology is good; Raykovicz is wrong

I’m responding to a recent story in Outdoor News: “Are we forgetting how to hunt?” by Mike Raykovicz.

The author takes issue with cellular cameras, rangefinders, lighted pins,
pins with rangefinders built in, food plots, scent-elimination
technology, onX maps, and smartphones.

It appears none of his arguments are valid.

Cellular cameras allow hunters to not go into the woods as much and therefore
not disturb the hunt area. Rangefinders and rangefinder pin sights give
hunters exact yards at given angles. This gives hunters accurate data to
make clean, quick kills. No accidents and a clean harvest.

Scent technology equals less “woodsmanship?” Nope, not in the least. It
enhances my woodsmanship. Food plots. Guess what: If you own land and
can afford food plots, great for you. I’m all for it despite not having
the land or the money for it.

No phones during hunting?

Even though I personally don’t, if you want to look at your phone, it’s none of my business. I mind my own bobber.

It’s unfortunate that Raykovicz fails to see the many benefits of
technology. Having said all this, hunting and fishing are main
components of my life, and they are being enhanced by technology.

Sean Lessard, Wyoming

Online Opinions

This issue’s question ———————————————————— One outdoor option come January is coyote hunting. Is it something you partake in during winter?

A) I try to hunt coyotes every year.

B) I’ve done it, but it’s not on my must-do list.

C) Nope, not a coyote hunter.

Online results from last issue’s question ————————— There are various modes of travel to get to ice-fishing locations. Which is your favorite/preferred means?

A) For me, it’s a snowmobile or ATV. (33%)

B) I prefer to drive a truck to my spots. (20%)

C) Hoof it! Walking out is great exercise! (47%)

Vote @ Discuss at

Commentaries and letters are the opinions of the writers, not necessarily those of Outdoor News

Attention Readers

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Letters to the Editor, Outdoor News, 9850 51st Ave. N., Suite 130, Plymouth, MN 55442-3271.

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