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Bag/creel limits

 
Posts: 70
Location: Southwestern Ohio
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Okay, I'm going to preface this with the belief that the creel/bag limits set are reasonable and fair to the land, and I do not condone ignoring them.

That being said, theres something that has come up in my family a few times, that being: is it okay to overharvest on one day if you don't overharvest for the total amount of time. I know that sounds weird, so heres an example: I go camping for a weekend, daily bag limit for squirrels is six. Day one, I take three. would it be 'okay' if I took nine the second day, since it averages out to six per day?

Argument for: the bag limits are set with the idea that even if everyone filled their bag every day, the land would be fine. ecologically, the difference between taking a squirrel on a Saturday vs a Friday would be negligible.

Argument against: it's illegal, for one. for another, the bag limit is just that, the upper limit and wouldn't be healthy to harvest at non-stop. taking only six the second day gives the 3 extra squirrels more time and opportunities to be ecologically active.

 
pollinator
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I haven't given this a lot of thought, but I guess I kind of look at it like this.  I think the daily limit keeps you from having an impact on the ability of squirrels or whatever animal to continue on without disruption.  A way that I think helps me with issues like this it to take the example of to a point that approaches the ridiculous.  Suppose instead of your example of getting 3 one day, and getting 9 the next to hit the average of 6, what if you got none for 364 days and then on day 365, you shot 2190?  Do you think it would affect the squirrel population in that area?  I would say yes, because that is likely far more than there are in an reasonable hunting area for a person, so in effect, you wiped out the population and removed any chance of breeding.  Maybe that is too extreme.  How about 0 for 29 days, and then on the 30th day, you shot 180?  Still 6 a day, but I would argue that again, you really hurt the breeding population.  I think the 3 one day, 9 the next has the same type of effect, but admittedly to a far, far less degree.  And btw, none of that is any kind of attack on you personally, it's just a way I have of thinking through a thing.  I obviously don't know where the cutoff is with regards to how many days you could "save up" your daily quota.  I expect the variables are too great for anyone to come up with an exact number, and so the group that came up with 6 just made a "best guess".  The exact number would vary so much according to population density of squirrels in an area, how many people hunted, how many natural predators there are, how good the food sources are in the area, and on and on, that an exact number is impossible.
 
pollinator
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IF everyone were logical and reasonable, an annual limit would make sense - BUT there would be no way to monitor the situation.  That I think is the reason they go with a daily limit - it is the only way to monitor and control the harvest of any species, fish, fowl or mammal.

How would you monitor or manage an annual or seasonal harvest, short of relying on people being honest and ethical?
 
Trace Oswald
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Lorinne Anderson wrote:IF everyone were logical and reasonable, an annual limit would make sense - BUT there would be no way to monitor the situation.  That I think is the reason they go with a daily limit - it is the only way to monitor and control the harvest of any species, fish, fowl or mammal.

How would you monitor or manage an annual or seasonal harvest, short of relying on people being honest and ethical?



So if there were a way to monitor it, you don't think that removing 2190 squirrels in one day has a different impact on the squirrel population in an area, as opposed to removing 6 a day for the whole year?  That seems unlikely to me.

Seasonal harvests are done with most animals in this area.  Deer rifle hunting for instance lasts 11 days here.  It is monitored by use of hunting licenses and tags, as well as peers watching out, and game wardens inspecting heavily, with very strict penalties for breaking the laws.
 
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I always assumed the daily limits were designed to avoid one person from bagging a bunch just by being in the right place at the right time.  Or those lucky enough to go out on day 1 from harvesting all of the available game in one day.

For example, on my property, it is not unusual to see deer in groups of up to 5, or Turkey in groups of 8, and so on.

If I could sit and pick them all off on one day just cuz I was in the right place at the right time, I would do greater damage than getting one, then having to wait to take my chances again the next day, when the temp, wind, humidity, cloud cover - and every other variable - is likely very different.  

I think it also gives other hunters a better chance.
 
Lorinne Anderson
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Trace Oswald wrote:[quote=Lorinne

So if there were a way to monitor it, you don't think that removing 2190 squirrels in one day has a different impact on the squirrel population in an area, as opposed to removing 6 a day for the whole year?  That seems unlikely to me.



Not at all, I completely agree with the concern and negative consequences you mentioned.

I was addressing simply responding to the OP, the situation described, and the inability to appropriately monitor a seasonal or annual limit - hence my theory on why the limits are daily.
 
Trace Oswald
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Lorinne Anderson wrote:

Trace Oswald wrote:[quote=Lorinne

So if there were a way to monitor it, you don't think that removing 2190 squirrels in one day has a different impact on the squirrel population in an area, as opposed to removing 6 a day for the whole year?  That seems unlikely to me.



Not at all, I completely agree with the concern and negative consequences you mentioned.

I was addressing simply responding to the OP, the situation described, and the inability to appropriately monitor a seasonal or annual limit - hence my theory on why the limits are daily.



Thank you for explaining.
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