Tundra Swan Harvest Presentation

Buddy Boy

Well-Known Member
Proposal for a Tundra Swan Recreational Harvest

Dear Waterfowl Hunters:

The Trumpeter Swan and the Tundra Swan are migratory game birds and the hunting of them is permitted under the Migratory Bird Treaty Act of 1918.

Following the passage of this Act in 1918 recreational hunting of these swans was suspended until 1962 when a limited seaon was opened for the western population of Tundra Swans and 1983 when a limited season was opened for the eastern population of Tundra Swans.

The management plan for the western population of Tundra Swans has a goal to maintain a population of 60,000 swans ... the current population is about 80,000 swans and they are hunted in Alaska, Montana, Utah and Nevada.

The management plan for the eastern population of Tundra Swans has a goal to maintain a population of 80,000 swans ... the current population is about 100,000 swans and they are hunted in Montana, North Dakota, South Dakota, Virginia and North Carolina. New Jersey has also been granted a season with 600 permits.

I contacted Mr. J. Hughes (Head of Population Management, CWS) in Ottawa last summer and we discussed my proposal for a limited Tundra Swan recreational harvest. Mr. J. Hughes was very supportive and he told me that a Tundra Swan harvest will never happen in Ontario until someone (like myself) asks for one and he referred me to Dr. J. Leafloor (Biologist, CWS) in Winnipeg for further information.

Dr. J. Leafloor informed me that there was no scientific reason to deny such a proposal and he suggested that I submit my proposal to Mr. J. Hughes for consideration. Furthermore Dr. J. Leafloor informed me that if Ontario requested a Tundra Swan harvest then the Canadian Wildlife Service would no doubt grant one according to the management plan.

My proposal as well as my reasons for the introduction of a limited Tundra Swan harvest in the Province of Ontario is reviewed and expanded upon in the handouts that I have prepared. I ask you for your support to make my proposal a reality for the benefit of all Ontario waterfowlers.

I have already pledged $20,000.00 for the promotion of my proposal with additional future funding available for the implementation of it.

The time is right to move forward with this proposal.

I thank you for your due consideration.

Sincerely,




J. Katchin, D.V.M.

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20 Balsam Trail, RR 1
Port Rowan, Ontario
N0E 1M0

March 06, 2011

Re: Proposal for a Tundra Swan Recreational Harvest in the Province of Ontario

Dear Waterfowl Hunters:

I presented four (4) proposals early last fall for consideration by the Ontario Waterfowl Advisory Committee (OWAC) at their next scheduled meeting that was to be held at the end of October.

1) My proposal for a Mourning Dove harvest in the Province of Ontario received overall support by the OWAC members and this proposal is now apparently moving forward.

2) My proposal for an Earlier Start to the Southern Waterfowl Season so that we could have a better opportunity to harvest some Blue Winged Teal (an early migratory duck species) did not receive overall support by the OWAC members due to a decreasing Ontario Blue Winged Teal population ... although the continental Blue Winged Teal population is near the highest level that has ever been recorded.

3) My proposal for a Tundra Swan harvest in the Province of Ontario did not receive support by the OWAC members but it was at least discussed briefly and that was a start.

4) My proposal to remove Mute Swans (an invasive species) from the List of Protected Species received favourable support by the OWAC members and it is now up to the Canadian Wildlife Service (CWS) to make the final decision.

I have recently sought support from Delta Waterfowl to pursue my proposal for a Tundra Swan recreational harvest in the Province of Ontario further (perhaps Manitoba and Saskatchewan as well) and I have also pledged substantial financial resources to them for this proposal so that Canadian waterfowlers can participate in our share of the annual continental recreational harvest of these large game birds.

I am now seeking support from members of the Long Point Waterfowlers Association (LPWA) as well as from other Ontario waterfowlers and my two (2) presentation letters prepared on February 27, 2011 are enclosed for your convenience.

The brief Waterfowler Survey enclosed may be completed with your comments and returned to me by mail at the above address.

I thank you for your due consideration and support of my proposal.

Sincerely,




J. Katchin, D.V.M.

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20 Balsam Trail, RR 1
Port Rowan, Ontario
N0E 1M0

February 27, 2011

Re: Proposal for a Tundra Swan Recreational Harvest in the Province of Ontario

Dear Waterfowl Hunters:

I am requesting your support for a Tundra Swan recreational harvest in the Province of Ontario as provided for within the Management Plan for the Eastern Population of Tundra Swans and I have enclosed a copy of the Executive Summary from the Management Plan for your convenience.

I would like to draw to your attention the section regarding the primary management goal:

The primary management goal is to maintain EP tundra swans at a population level that will provide optimum resource benefits for society consistent with habitat availability and International treaties. The specific population objective is to maintain at least 80,000 EP tundra swans based on a 3-year average population index from the MWS in the Atlantic and Mississippi Flyways. This population objective will provide the level to satisfy public demand for enjoyment and use of this resource and the desire to maintain distributions of EP swans throughout their range as well as continue to support both subsistence and sport harvest.

I would also like to draw to your attention the section regarding a recreational harvest:

The harvest strategy contained herein has been modified from previous harvest strategies. Clear, unambiguous population thresholds have been developed for the allocation of permits, and a revised system for permit transfers within and among hunt zones and Flyways has been incorporated. The targeted maximum harvest rate for EP tundra swans is 10%, with recreational harvest at or below 5%.

The rationale for a recreational harvest is clearly explained on page 10 of the Management Plan under Strategy C-2 of the Public Use Guidelines whereby it states "The tundra swan is a migratory game bird species, as are all members of the family Anatidae, and hunting of the species is provided for by the Migratory Bird Treaty Act of 1918". It further states "hunting is an important public use of EP tundra swans" in the United States and I believe that it should also be an important public use in Canada.

One should note that there is already an annual subsistence harvest of the Eastern Population of Tundra Swans by the aboriginal people in Alaska and Canada accounting for approximately 5% of the population.

Canada has been allocated 41% of the total recreational harvest (as explained on page 27 of the Management Plan) under the permit distribution agreement with the United States.
/>However ... since there is currently no recreational harvest of the Eastern Population of Tundra Swans in Canada all of the 9600 permits (based upon a 50% permit success rate) currently available are distributed solely within the United States. In other words ... they are benefiting both economically and recreationally from our inaction and disuse of a renewable natural resource.

The actual permit success rate is currently only about 37% in the United States leaving a margin of safety of 33% to prevent any over harvesting of Tundra Swans.

Considering that the current Eastern Population of Tundra Swans is approximately 100,000 (25% over the Management Plan of 80,000) I believe that the time is right to move forward with my proposal for a Tundra Swan recreational harvest in the Province of Ontario.

An opportunity for waterfowl hunters to participate in a limited (permit only) Tundra Swan recreational harvest in Norfolk County ... specifically the Long Point Bay area ... would produce an economic benefit to the Waterfowl Management Unit within the Crown Marsh as well as to the tourism industry in general. Other selected locations in south western Ontario such as the Rondeau Bay area and the Lake St. Clair area may also receive an economic benefit from my proposal.

I have pledged to contribute $20,000.00 from The Dr. Jerome Katchin Waterfowl Foundation in order to facilitate the implementation of my proposal by the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources and the Canadian Wildlife Service.

Furthermore ... I have suggested that the approximately $80,000.00 raised annually through the distribution of the Tundra Swan permits (at $20.00 each) could be dedicated towards additional much needed waterfowl research in Canada.

Should you agree with my proposal for a Tundra Swan recreational harvest in the Province of Ontario please contact a representative of your local hunting club, the Ontario Federation of Anglers and Hunters, the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources and the Canadian Wildlife Service expressing your support. You may send a copy of your letter or of your e-mail to me at the above address or to thebuddyboy@hotmail.com.

I thank you for your due consideration and support of my proposal.

Sincerely,




J. Katchin, D.V.M.

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EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

The Eastern Population (EP) of tundra swans has been managed under a joint four flyway management plan first developed and implemented in 1982. A harvest strategy for the EP was subsequently adopted in 1988. The last revision and incorporation of these documents occurred in 1998. The 1998 plan established population objectives based upon the Atlantic Flyway Mid-Winter Survey (MWS) and identified a number of key research and data gaps needed for the continued management of this population.

Since 1998, a number of research projects have cast light upon some of the uncertainties identified in the 1998 plan. However, a number of new questions, particularly surrounding the use and accuracy of mid-winter counts as a population metric have also arisen. This updated plan incorporates this new information and sets a path forward for continued accumulation of knowledge for the continental management of EP tundra swans.

The primary management goal is to maintain EP tundra swans at a population level that will provide optimum resource benefits for society consistent with habitat availability and International treaties. The specific population objective is to maintain at least 80,000 EP tundra swans based on a 3-year average population index from the MWS in the Atlantic and Mississippi Flyways. This population objective will provide the level to satisfy public demand for enjoyment and use of this resource and the desire to maintain distributions of EP swans throughout their range as well as continue to support both subsistence and sport harvest.

Inclusion of Mississippi Flyway MWS data is a change from the previous plan where only Atlantic Flyway data were considered. The addition of Mississippi Flyway MWS data is thought to provide a more complete dataset on which to monitor population trends. Despite the addition of Mississippi Flyway MWS numbers, no change to the population objective is deemed necessary at this time.

Protection of breeding, staging, and wintering habitat is critical to the long-term maintenance of EP tundra swans. Recent research projects have identified key staging locations whose protection is vital towards continued EP tundra swan population stability. Threats to both breeding and wintering grounds continue to increase. Several strategies and tasks have been identified to address these needs. Similarly, development of a breeding population index, or better enumeration of wintering numbers is an important need. Further refinement of a population model that will better inform management is another identified need.

The harvest strategy contained herein has been modified from previous harvest strategies. Clear, unambiguous population thresholds have been developed for the allocation of permits, and a revised system for permit transfers within and among hunt zones and Flyways has been incorporated. The targeted maximum harvest rate for EP tundra swans is 10%, with recreational harvest at or below 5%.

This plan and the harvest strategy should be reviewed and revised as needed at no longer than 5-year intervals.

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20 Balsam Trail, RR 1
Port Rowan, Ontario
N0E 1M0

February 27, 2011

Re: Proposal for a Tundra Swan Recreational Harvest in the Province of Ontario

Dear Waterfowl Hunters:

The Management Plan for the Eastern Population of Tundra Swans contains several appendices including Appendix C.

This appendix describes and explains the Eastern Population Tundra Swan harvest strategy.

The key points that I would like to bring to your attention are:

Introduction:

1) The management plan makes provision for a recreational harvest in Canada should one be considered.

2) The management plan is designed to meet the population objective of 80,000 swans.

Harvest Objective:

1) The maximum harvest rate is set at 10% of the estimated population.

2) The current recreational harvest rate is 3.74% of 99,635 swans (2003 to 2005).

3) The aboriginal harvest is estimated be be < 5.00 % of the estimated population.

4) The recreational harvest is recommended to be < 5.00 % of the estimated population.

Permit System:

1) The current permit success rate is 37% (2003 to 2005).

2) The harvest strategy assumes a success rate of 50% to prevent a significant increase in harvest.

Permit Distribution:

1) The management plan's original distribution of permits:

a) Production Zone - 33% (Alaska at 3% and Canada at 30%)

b) Migration Zone - 33% (USA at 22% and Canada at 11%)

c) Wintering Zone - 34% (USA at 34% and Canada at 0%)

2) The management plan's current distribution of permits:

a) Production Zone - 0%

b) Migration Zone - 42%

c) Wintering Zone - 58%

Note: The Migration Zone permits are distributed as follows:

Montana 500, North Dakota 2,200, South Dakota 1,300

Note: The Wintering Zone permits are distributed as follows:

North Carolina 5,000, Virginia 600, New Jersey 0

Redistribution of Existing Permits:

1) Redistribution of annual permits (currently at 9600) would return to the area of origin if provinces or states within the area of origin authorize a new Tundra Swan harvest.

2) Consequently ... if a recreational harvest was authorized for Ontario then we could request the full Canadian share (11%) of the Migration Zone permits and the full Canadian share (30%) of the Production Zone permits for a total of 41% of all 9600 permits.

There is a one year lead time requirement for new harvest requests.

Sincerely,




J. Katchin, D.V.M.

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Tundra Swan Harvest Survey

You may complete only the lower portion of the survey if you like.

Name: ____________________________________ E-Mail: ____________________________

Address: __________________________________ Phone Number: _____________________

__________________________________________

Survey: (Circle Your Choice)

1) I hunt ducks ... yes or no.

2) I hunt geese ... yes or no.

3) I have hunted Tundra Swans before ... yes or no.

4) I would like to hunt Tundra Swans in the future ... yes or no.

5) I have read the two (2) presentation letters of February 27, 2011 ... yes or no.

6) I support a limited Tundra Swan harvest for the Province of Ontario ... yes or no.

7) I would hunt Tundra Swans if the Province of Ontario had a season ... yes or no.

8) I think that $20.00 per Tundra Swan permit is reasonable ... yes or no.

Comments:

__________________________________________________ ____________________________

__________________________________________________ ____________________________

Signature: (Optional) ____________________________________
 

Buddy Boy

Well-Known Member
20 Balsam Trail, RR 1
Port Rowan, Ontario
N0E 1M0

March 30, 2011

Mr. J. Hughes
Head of Population Management
Canadian Wildlife Service
Environment Canada
335 River Road
Ottawa, Ontario
K1A 0H3

Re: Proposal for a Tundra Swan Recreational Harvest in the Province of Ontario

Dear Mr. J. Hughes:

Further to my letter of October 05, 2010 I am writing to provide you with additional information regarding my proposal for a Tundra Swan Recreational Harvest in the Province of Ontario.

I would like to first thank you for including my proposal as an agenda item for the Ontario Waterfowl Advisory Committee (OWAC) meeting held on November 04, 2010. I received a copy of the minutes of the meeting from Dr. S. Petrie (Executive Director, Long Point Waterfowl) after they were finalized and I was disappointed to read "there is no support for opening a Tundra Swan season among the OWAC members" along with the reasons provided.

I subsequently established The Dr. Jerome Katchin Waterfowl Foundation through RBC Dominion Securities in December of 2010 and I completed my Mission Statement after consulting with Dr. S. Petrie and Dr. D. Ankney (Chairperson, Scientific Advisory Committee, Long Point Waterfowl). Although the wording of my Mission Statement (included below) may appear to be somewhat generic in nature my principle goal is to establish a Tundra Swan recreational harvest in the Province of Ontario.

The goal of this Foundation is to financially support research regarding 1) the preservation and enhancement of waterfowl habitat 2) the preservation and enhancement of waterfowl populations and 3) the preservation and enhancement of the waterfowling tradition by providing (whenever possible) an annual grant from the proceeds earned by the capital investments within the Foundation to a selected qualified research project.

I have now committed sufficient funds to the Foundation over a four (4) year period (2010 to 2013) to reasonably assure that $1,000.00 will be available at the end of 2011, $2,000.00 will be available at the end of 2012, $3,000.00 will be available at the end of 2013 and $4,000.00 will be available at the end of 2014 for a total of $10,000.00 to establish a Tundra Swan recreational harvest in the Province of Ontario.

During my meeting with Dr. S. Petrie on January 10, 2011 to discuss my minimum financial commitment to the Foundation to 2013 as well as the annual disbursement of available funds it was suggested that I contact Mr. R. Olson (President, Delta Waterfowl Foundation) regarding a proposed project to promote a Tundra Swan recreational harvest in the Province of Ontario.

I presented a modified version of the proposed project to Mr. R. Olson in my letter of January 30, 2011 and I provided him with additional information in my letter of February 02, 2011 (copies of which were provided to you). Mr. R. Olson was initially supportive of my proposal to establish a Tundra Swan recreational harvest in the Province of Ontario and consequently I informed him of my anticipated financial contribution to The Dr. Jerome Katchin Waterfowl Foundation beyond 2013 covering a twenty (20) year period as well as the projected annual disbursement of available funds to support research projects in my third letter of February 14, 2011 (copies of which were restricted).

Dr. R. Bailey (Vice President Policy for Canada, Delta Waterfowl Foundation) has subsequently informed me that my proposal to establish a Tundra Swan recreational harvest in the Province of Ontario may be premature at this time citing the same reasons that the OWAC members had raised during their meeting of November 04, 2010.

One of the reasons repeatedly cited was that it was not known how many Ontario waterfowlers would be interested in participating in a Tundra Swan recreational harvest.

Consequently I have prepared a presentation with a survey (copy enclosed) that I will deliver to the members of the Long Point Waterfowlers Association (LPWA) at our Annual General Meeting on April 16, 2011.

I have also posted this presentation on the Hunt Ontario web site as well as on the LPWA web site (www.longpoint.on.ca/lpwa) with several replies indicating an interest and a support for a Tundra Swan recreational harvest in the Province of Ontario. I will provided you with a brief synopsis of the replies to my proposal in a subsequent letter.

In consideration of the interest and the support that I have received I am now prepared to provide an initial $10,000.00 in funding to any organization (or group of organizations) to establish a Tundra Swan recreational harvest in the Province of Ontario as well as an additional $4,000.00 per year for twenty years to monitor the regulated harvest of Tundra Swans as per the Foundation's initial projected financial plan.

I am also willing to contribute two (2) additional $5,000.00 donations to assist the residents of Manitoba and Saskatchewan in establishing their own Tundra Swan recreational harvest as previously indicated to Mr. R. Olson in my letter of February 14, 2011.

Please forward copies of this letter with the enclosed documentation to the other OWAC members (not included in the cc list) as I do not have their contact information.

I would like to thank you for your due consideration and support of my proposal.

Sincerely,




J. Katchin, D.V.M.

c.c.

Mr. R. Olson, President, Delta Waterfowl Foundation
Dr. R. Bailey, Vice President Policy for Canada, Delta Waterfowl Foundation
Dr. S. Petrie, Executive Director, Long Point Waterfowl
Dr. D. Ankney, Chairperson, Scientific Advisory Committee, Long Point Waterfowl
Mr. J. Brennan, Provincial Manager, Ducks Unlimited Canada
Mr. G. Farrant, Head of Government Relations, Ontario Federation of Anglers and Hunters
Dr. T. Quinney, Head of Fish and Wildlife Programs, Ontario Federation of Anglers and Hunters
Mr. P. Hunter, Biologist, Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources
Mr. J. Malcolm, President, Long Point Waterfowlers Association
Mr. R. Abbey, President, Long Point Area Fish and Game Club

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20 Balsam Trail, RR 1
Port Rowan, Ontario
N0E 1M0

March 31, 2011

Mr. J. Hughes
Head of Population Management
Canadian Wildlife Service
Environment Canada
335 River Road
Ottawa, Ontario
K1A 0H3

Re: Proposal for a Tundra Swan Recreational Harvest in the Province of Ontario

Dear Mr. J. Hughes:

Further to my letter of March 30, 2011 I am writing to provide you with a brief synopsis of the replies to my proposal for a Tundra Swan Recreational Harvest in the Province of Ontario that was posted on the Hunt Ontario web site as well as on the LPWA web site.

You may view the replies directly yourself on the Hunt Ontario web site by "clicking" on Community then on Hunting then on Waterfowl as well as on the LPWA web site (www.longpoint.on.ca/lpwa) by "clicking" on Channel 6-8.

Hunt Ontario:

1) "Buddy Boy" thread viewed by 997 with 44 replies.

2) "A Tundra Swan Harvest" thread viewed by 565 with 27 replies.

Note: I have also received 3 completed surveys by e-mail in favour of a Tundra Swan harvest.

LPWA:

1) "Annual General Meeting - Tundra Swan Harvest" thread viewed by 460 with 3 replies.

2) "Tundra Swan Harvest Presentation" thread viewed by 81 with 0 replies.

Note: I posted a previous thread last fall on the LPWA web site which received several replies.

Note: Replies as of 1600 hours on March 28, 2011.

Please distribute this letter to the other OWAC members (not included in the cc list) as I do not have their contact information.

Sincerely,




J. Katchin, D.V.M.

c.c.

Mr. R. Olson, President, Delta Waterfowl Foundation
Dr. R. Bailey, Vice President Policy for Canada, Delta Waterfowl Foundation
Dr. S. Petrie, Executive Director, Long Point Waterfowl
Dr. D. Ankney, Chairperson, Scientific Advisory Committee, Long Point Waterfowl
Mr. J. Brennan, Provincial Manager, Ducks Unlimited Canada
Mr. G. Farrant, Head of Government Relations, Ontario Federation of Anglers and Hunters
Dr. T. Quinney, Head of Fish and Wildlife Programs, Ontario Federation of Anglers and Hunters
Mr. P. Hunter, Biologist, Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources
Mr. J. Malcolm, President, Long Point Waterfowlers Association
Mr. R. Abbey, President, Long Point Area Fish and Game Club
 
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