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Re: More Regulation? [Re: Mike Flick] #3298270
08/30/12 03:44 PM
08/30/12 03:44 PM
Joined: Jan 2007
Posts: 7,867
Georgia
warrior Offline
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warrior  Offline
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Joined: Jan 2007
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Georgia
BTW

Justin, I wholeheartedly agree. We are the boots on the ground and the frontline for our DNRs. There are many of us that love what we do and have taken the time to educate ourselves that we really do not need regulated since we do our dead level best to do it right anyway. But if "protecting the public" isn't reason enough what about things like this as at least a need for better training and that isn't going to happen for many unless made to do so.

Re: More Regulation? [Re: Mike Flick] #3298328
08/30/12 04:24 PM
08/30/12 04:24 PM
Joined: Jul 2008
Posts: 1,274
mequon, wisconsin
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Paul Winkelmann Offline
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mequon, wisconsin
I'm not sure about the rest of you, but personally, I find it very encouraging that of the few people I really trust with the state of our particular occupation, is that one lives in Georgia and the other in New Mexico. ( Come on now, when was the last time you heard "coast to coast" without having either New York or California mentioned? )

Re: More Regulation? [Re: warrior] #3298933
08/30/12 10:20 PM
08/30/12 10:20 PM
Joined: Apr 2012
Posts: 1,995
1st civ. Div. Wood County Wi.
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Mike Flick Offline OP
trapper
Mike Flick  Offline OP
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1st civ. Div. Wood County Wi.
Originally Posted By: warrior
Originally Posted By: HD_Wildlife
The best thing NWCO's can do in my humble opinion is continue to help the public learn about the benefit of bats, solve bat problems in a healthy balanced way that protects the people and the bats and promote conservation.


How can they if, as it is in Georgia, any jack leg with thirty dollars and the limited ability to pass a limited questionnaire qualifies one as a wildlife professional?


We all started somewhere, no need for any name calling. So.... you trying to close the door on new competition?

Re: More Regulation? [Re: Mike Flick] #3298959
08/30/12 10:36 PM
08/30/12 10:36 PM
Joined: Jan 2007
Posts: 7,867
Georgia
warrior Offline
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warrior  Offline
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Mike, absolutely not. Just ask around, I've freely given of my time to help the new guy.

Re: More Regulation? [Re: Mike Flick] #3298970
08/30/12 10:43 PM
08/30/12 10:43 PM
Joined: Jan 2007
Posts: 7,867
Georgia
warrior Offline
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warrior  Offline
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Georgia
Without standards we are just some sort of handyman or jackleg depending on skill set. With standards we are an industry of professionals.

Re: More Regulation? [Re: Mike Flick] #3299005
08/30/12 11:08 PM
08/30/12 11:08 PM
Joined: Apr 2012
Posts: 1,995
1st civ. Div. Wood County Wi.
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Mike Flick Offline OP
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Mike Flick  Offline OP
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1st civ. Div. Wood County Wi.
It gives you something for people to measure you against. If you are doing realy pretty work then only the RICH ones will be able to affoard you.

Re: More Regulation? [Re: Mike Flick] #3299250
08/31/12 08:08 AM
08/31/12 08:08 AM
Joined: Jan 2007
Posts: 7,867
Georgia
warrior Offline
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warrior  Offline
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Georgia
Mike, on a similar thread there is the common complaint of the unlicensed PCO doing wildlife. If the truth be told in most areas the PCO on paper is more qualified to do this work than us.

The PCO has to meet requirements of testing, licensing, company registration, supervision, record keeping, liability coverage and continuing education.

We have, in this state, no requirements other then a small fee and the most basic of testing one a one time basis with only an annual report required as record keeping.

If it ever came to push to shove, as it has in CA and FL, the PCO could take away everything we have. Yes, we could fight and maybe win or as has happened get some of it back but it would never be us in charge ever again.

While I personally hate and despise regulation I am a realist. Without at least some modicum of the appearance of regulation we have no leg to stand on if challenged. What I am arguing for should be the very thing I should be against since the costs to me to meet new regs could very well put me and others over the edge in this economy but I am looking at this in the long term. I don't want to be part of the generation that loses the opportunity for the next new guy because I wasn't willing to help guide this industry into the modern era.

Let's face it things are going to change, they always do. We need to guide those changes or step aside.

I've given alot of thought to what I would like to see in my state and the best I can come up with would be a model based on our current structural pest control board except completely under the auspices of the DNR and not the Dept of Ag. It would be fairly simple and straight forward. A board of stakeholders would be created with biologists and conservation officers from the DNR, representatives of the industry and consumer affairs and yes a rep from the Dept of Ag (if we get similar representation on the Structural Pest Board). This new wildlife control board would then oversee wildlife control operations in this state and most importantly protect us from attacks by outside interests. The board could then create as needed standards. Most importantly it gives us equal standing.

Re: More Regulation? [Re: Mike Flick] #3299279
08/31/12 08:45 AM
08/31/12 08:45 AM
Joined: Apr 2012
Posts: 1,995
1st civ. Div. Wood County Wi.
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Mike Flick Offline OP
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Mike Flick  Offline OP
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1st civ. Div. Wood County Wi.
That has got to be the best argument for the topic I have ever read. I hope this is a local effort and you have some good local guys at the wheel like yourself Warrior!

Re: More Regulation? [Re: Mike Flick] #3299372
08/31/12 10:02 AM
08/31/12 10:02 AM
Joined: Nov 2009
Posts: 843
NH
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sgs Offline
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NH
The problem is, regulations breed regulations.

Once you push for regulations that *you* thinks have merit, you open the door for them all.

It's true that we are already regulated. But once you say OK, I might as well get *my* regulations in there too, you have a free for all. Just look at the various state and federal regulations on firearms.

Is this really where you want your business to go?

Re: More Regulation? [Re: Mike Flick] #3299591
08/31/12 12:29 PM
08/31/12 12:29 PM
Joined: Apr 2012
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1st civ. Div. Wood County Wi.
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Mike Flick Offline OP
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Mike Flick  Offline OP
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1st civ. Div. Wood County Wi.
I gotta agree with you also sgs. I guess what it comes down to is this, Why do you really want the rules added to the books? Is it because the presant rules allow someone else to under bid with a method you dont use? Or does the competition make a mess out of alot of jobs, and people associate that with you. I really dont see an issue with either of these in my own area, and its more regulated than lots of folks in the biz around here even think about. Many of us have been dealing with fur trapping regulations since we were children. To ask for more here would be taboo.
As for running the competition out of town like the PC guys? Believe me, it aint happening. They want to set a few cage traps, yada yada yada, let em. When the customer wants real animal work done, they know who to call. Most PC guys have a 20 foot ladder if that, and hate using it.

Re: More Regulation? [Re: Mike Flick] #3299606
08/31/12 12:39 PM
08/31/12 12:39 PM
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Posts: 1,673
West, Mi
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wiggler Offline
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West, Mi
Originally Posted By: Mike Flick
I gotta agree with you also sgs. I guess what it comes down to is this, Why do you really want the rules added to the books? Is it because the presant rules allow someone else to under bid with a method you dont use? Or does the competition make a mess out of alot of jobs, and people associate that with you. I really dont see an issue with either of these in my own area, and its more regulated than lots of folks in the biz around here even think about. Many of us have been dealing with fur trapping regulations since we were children. To ask for more here would be taboo.
As for running the competition out of town like the PC guys? Believe me, it aint happening. They want to set a few cage traps, yada yada yada, let em. When the customer wants real animal work done, they know who to call. Most PC guys have a 20 foot ladder if that, and hate using it.


hey!!! I resemble that remark.... i hate ladders too!!!

Re: More Regulation? [Re: Mike Flick] #3299628
08/31/12 12:52 PM
08/31/12 12:52 PM
Joined: Jan 2007
Posts: 7,867
Georgia
warrior Offline
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warrior  Offline
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Georgia
Thank you, Mike, for the kind words. At this point it's just me and a few others that seem to agree with me but beyond that it's all conjecture.

SGS, no I absololutely do not want my business to go down that road and truthfully it scares the living [Please excuse my language... I'm an idiot] out of me. I know all to well the dangerous road of unintended consequences and were it not for my own personal experience I would be loath to even mention it and continue hoping to remain under the radar. My experience with the turtle trapping regulations process has shown me plain and simple we can not continue on as we are unless mass suicide is your kind of thing.

Let me give you a run down of what happened and just why turtle trapping in the state of Georgia is dead and gone.

I and others first learned of the intent of the DNR to change the regulations only after the deed had been done if not in fact but de facto by the legislature. Historically the trapping of turles in Georgia was completely unregulated with unlimited take and restrictions just on a handful of species judged to be in "peril". One stipulation that was in place was for those that sold their catch. These folks would be required to purchase a commercial turle trappers license, ostensibly to monitor the commercial take of turtles in the state. Absolutely nothing wrong with this system which was working perfectly since only three commercial licenses, for the entire state, had been issued in the past decade.
We were informed after the fact that a group of "concerned citizens" had gone to the legislature and requested a change in the licensing and permitting requirements since the asian markets were rapidly depleting north american turtle stocks. Supposedly china and southeast asia have eaten themselves out of house and home with their native species and were now voraciously eating their way through our stock of turtles. More on that later.
Now let me explain how licensing and permitting work in the state of Georgia, which is very similar to many other states. Here in Georgia the only entity with the sole power to require licensure is the legislature. It is their sole perogative and not even the executive is required to make it happen. Once this requirement is passed via resolution it is delegated to whichever board or agency tasked with regulation, in this case it was the Wildlife Resources Board (WRB) which is appointed by the Governor to oversee the Wildlife Resoucres Division (WRD) and Dept of Natural Resources (DNR). Without express legislative approval and intent no agency of this state can issue a license they may only issue a permit and that is subject to broad guidelines issued by the legislature in the formation of said agency.
Now where we came in was only after the legislature; upon the request of the Sierra Club, River Keepers, a consortium of University of Georgia biologists and other ne'er do wells; had issued to the WRB a resolution that the WRB was now required to establish and enforce a set of regulations governing the take of freshwater turtles in the state of Georgia. At no time did this resolution change or alter licensing in any way.
Sounds reasonable in concept but the plain and simple fact is once done the die was cast. I and others set out to see just how we could possibly get the very best outcome for Georgia residents who wished to continue trapping turtles and hopefully earn all or part of a living from that pursuit. How little did we know that we would waste the next two years fighting over the scraps of a dead industry.
Now to tell the truth, turtle trapping histically was never a large scale enterprise and very few people ever made their sole income from the waters of this state but more than a few fur trappers, fishermen and others have supplemented their incomes with wild caught turtles. It has only been in recent years that what appeared to be a threat to our native freshwater turtles has arisen and that is the assumed commercial overharvest to supply the asian markets. As we would later learn after repeated demands of documentation not a single entity in this state or others could provide a single shred of evidence that this was occurring in this state or any other; not one bill of lading, not one customs inspection, not one USDA inspection sheet, only the anecdotal comments of the very actors that requested the resolution in the first place. One would think that Georgia with the world's busiest airport and a major east coast deep water port and an extensive hub of interstate transport could substantiate with at least a single piece of paper that our turtles had in fact at some point in the recent past had exited the state for points unknown.
The fact is the only substantiaton came from our side of the table that in fact turtles were leaving the state. This was provided by three gentlemen who had the foresight to establish, completely on their own hook, commercial turtle farming operations so that no longer would they be dependant upon wild caught turtles for export. While all of their stock of turtles originated in the wild the export trade consisted almost solely of the offspring of this stock and the captive held turtles on the farms was by and large self sustaining with only a limited need for replenishment from wild stocks. Ultimately this was the final nail but we didn't realize until to late.
To cut to the chase, the outcome was that citizens may take and possess up to ten freshwater turtles per day for personal use on a standard fishing license. NWCOs could continue to trap an unlimited number of freshwater turtles as long as the turtles were held no longer than 72 hours and then either released back into the same watershed or humanely euthanized. You can thank your's truly for that. The farmers were allowed to keep the turtles they already possessed, though no clarification of personal property was granted, as long as they met standards of housing/fencing and record keeping was maintained and made their operations available for inspection by DNR personnel with limitations upon that. The farmers would also be allowed to obtain upon request "brood stocking permits" for the replenishment of turtle stocks as needed for replacement or expansion. These permits would be issued on a first come first served basis in conjunction with established quotas for each of the regulated species and they could contract with any licensed commercial turtle trapper to fill these brood stock permits. It's the quotas that became the rub.
Some species immediately aquired such low quotas that a single brood stock permit when filled, if it even could meet the actual need, will close the season for that species for the entire year. Even the common snapper has a quota of only 1500 for the entire state. Now I do not know if you know the current population levels of common snappers in Georgia but that number can be met in a single drainage in a single county without ever noticing the difference. Apparently neither does the DNR as there has never in the entire history of the state been a survey of our turtles and as I was told when asked when, "it'll never happen".
Effectively trappers like Kirk Dekalb who rely on several different opportunities of income lost one whole option.

Now I can not hope to have you or anyone else try to understand just how painful this process was for me and others, especially since we are talking about a very small niche in the overall trapping community that quite frankly didn't even get the attention of the Georgia Trappers Association. What it did for me was to peel back the curtain of just how we in the Nuisance Wildlife Control Industry will be dealt with when the time comes.

Some group of "concerned citizens" will approach the legislature with a reasonable request.....

Last edited by warrior; 08/31/12 01:05 PM.
Re: More Regulation? [Re: Mike Flick] #3299638
08/31/12 01:05 PM
08/31/12 01:05 PM
Joined: Mar 2008
Posts: 692
tennessee
ccary Offline
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tennessee
wanting more standards = fear IMO.
Some places just don't have the money to make a living at this guys, and there is absolutely nothing you can do about it. The thirty dollar guys actually have a place in my opinion.

Re: More Regulation? [Re: Mike Flick] #3299683
08/31/12 01:32 PM
08/31/12 01:32 PM
Joined: Jan 2007
Posts: 7,867
Georgia
warrior Offline
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Yes, the thirty dollar guys do as does the fur guys doing favors.

I first became an advocate of regulation upon seeing the horrid state of things among some of my so called competitors. I like anyone who has been here more than a minute have seen the cheats, cons and criminals. It sickened me enough to say "that something needs to be done". I think that thought has occured to all of us at some time or another. With time I have sadly come to an acceptance of it and no longer even bat an eye at it. My heart is cold and calloused, I guess, and now know that no amount of regulation will stop that. Just as JC said we would always have the poor I say we will always have crooks. Then as the economy faltered we got an influx of the unemployed trappers joining the ranks. The temptaion was the cry for regulated barriers of entry. While tempting from a purely selfish interest my principles say not just no but [Please excuse my language... I'm an idiot] NO. Instead I welcome this new blood with open arms, join us and add to our knowledge and skill base and if I can help lessen the learning curve my number is posted.
So I was left with a quandry. Just what do we really need? Can it be applied reasonably and fairly? Why do we need it in the first place?
On the first two I am still trying to hash it all out. My gut says no I do not need it as I already know what I need to know and those who manage to stumble their way into our ranks will figure it out or leave. Reasonable? Fairly? There ain't no such thing. So that leaves the why and I hope my earlier posts explain my thoughts on the subject.

I do know this, whatever comes we are going to have to religiously fight to protect the small guy. If regulation ever becomes a right of entry or good old boys club then we might as well sign up with the democratic party.

Re: More Regulation? [Re: ccary] #3299762
08/31/12 02:15 PM
08/31/12 02:15 PM
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Posts: 7,867
Georgia
warrior Offline
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Originally Posted By: ccary
wanting more standards = fear IMO.


You're [Please excuse my language... I'm an idiot] straight it's fear! I've sat across the table from the enemy and gotten steamrolled. It will happen, rest assured, if we do nothing. The Henry County Beekeepers Association, of which I am the VP and presumptive President next year, has as our motto "Fail to Plan, Plan to Fail". I offer that simple phrase as what should be our battle cry for the future.

Re: More Regulation? [Re: Mike Flick] #3299781
08/31/12 02:28 PM
08/31/12 02:28 PM
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Georgia
warrior Offline
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warrior  Offline
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Georgia
In rereading some of my posts it may seem as if it's the PCOs that are a concern. Not at all, just presenting them as but one example of how it could come down. I am not anti PCO, some of our best operators are PCOs (Winkleman and Jameson), my post on turtle trapping is more than likely how it will play out. The PCOs are just as content as we are to stay under the radar and I am sure after the mess in CA and FL they will be loathe to stir that pot again all the while the enemy is out there flying under our radar.

Re: More Regulation? [Re: Mike Flick] #3299789
08/31/12 02:31 PM
08/31/12 02:31 PM
Joined: Jan 2007
Posts: 7,867
Georgia
warrior Offline
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The main thing is that PCOs as a state regulated industry can defer all industry assaults directly to the state and the state will have to defend it's position. We as NWCOs are singly vunerable and without regulation or in my example a board of oversight are completely open to the whims of the legislature.

Re: More Regulation? [Re: Mike Flick] #3300036
08/31/12 05:15 PM
08/31/12 05:15 PM
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1st civ. Div. Wood County Wi.
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Mike Flick Offline OP
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1st civ. Div. Wood County Wi.
I know from reading your posts that you want to do something, but do the right thing. I dont see a national club helping anyone at the state level (And thats where the state rules are created). The real fire power would be to create a branch off of the state trappers assn, and work with them at the rondes, and trapper training corses for training purposes, and demos. The state assns have there finger on the pulse of the new and coming rules. and our representatives have a working relationship with the big wigs up in the sugar shack. Fur trapping is still an industry in the United States, just like ADC work.

Re: More Regulation? [Re: Mike Flick] #3300065
08/31/12 05:34 PM
08/31/12 05:34 PM
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tennessee
ccary Offline
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tennessee
One thing i'm afraid of with the standards is that they usually come down to money, not a way to keep something professional. I know i didn't have the money to spend when i first started out.
Now, i do understand the point of the standards. I just hope that if it happens it will be done correctly and actually HELP us.

Re: More Regulation? [Re: Mike Flick] #3300083
08/31/12 05:44 PM
08/31/12 05:44 PM
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mequon, wisconsin
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Paul Winkelmann Offline
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Mike, I agree wholeheartedly! The problem is with some of the people in high positions. For some strange reason, a few of them feel that ADC is trying to weaken the WTA. If they made ADC a part of the WTA, they would certainly strengthen their organization well into the future. I'm amazed that they can't see the handwriting on the wall. This probably pertains to other states as well. By the way, Mike, I'm sure a lot of guys who just read your post are wondering what the heck you are talking about. Wisconsin has such a strong trapper's association that it can hardly be believed in many other states.

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