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Thread: Ontario Tundra Swan Season

  1. #11
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    An Ontario Tundra Swan Season (Part 6)

    Distribution of Tundra Swan Tags

    The distribution of tags for the Eastern Population of Tundra Swans and the Western Population of Tundra Swans is based upon the provisions within their respective management plans ... which is currently demand driven.

    Eastern Population of Tundra Swans

    Migration Area (42% of 9,600 tags)

    Montana - 500 tags
    North Dakota - 2,000 tags
    South Dakota - 1,500 tags

    Wintering Area (58% of 9,600 tags)

    North Carolina - 5,000 tags
    Virginia - 600 tags
    New Jersey - Standing Authorization in 2007 ... current update is not available.

    Additional Jurisdictions:

    Delaware - 84 tags starting in 2019
    Maryland - Standing Authorization in 2019 ... current update is not available.

    Western Population of Tundra Swans

    There are currently 3,150 "General Swan" tags available.

    Utah - 2,000 tags
    Nevada - 650 tags
    Montana - 500 tags

    There are also 900 (3 bird) Tundra Swan permits available.

    Alaska - 900 (3 bird) permits

    A redistribution of up to 41% of the tags for the Eastern Population of Tundra Swans could be (should be) brought back to Canada as per the Sport Hunting Plan developed in 1988.

    Additional tags could be made available for the Western Population of Tundra Swans to be harvested in Canada since not all of the 5,000 available tags are currently being distributed in the United States.

    Please refer to Part 7 regarding the current "Subsistence Harvest of Tundra Swans" and their eggs in Canada and the United States.

    Jerome Katchin, D.V.M.

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  3. #12
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    An Ontario Tundra Swan Season (Part 7)

    Subsistence Harvest of Tundra Swans

    The annual sustainable total harvest of birds from the Eastern Population of Tundra Swans and the Western Population of Tundra Swans has been established at 10% of the mid-winter survey for each population.

    Eastern Population of Tundra Swans

    The Management Plan for the Eastern Population of Tundra Swans (2007) has allocated a subsistence harvest rate of 5% most of which would take place in the Canadian high arctic since only about 4% of the Eastern Population of Tundra Swans breed in the area known as the "north slope" of Alaska which is sparsely populated by the Indigenous Peoples there.

    It was estimated that the subsistence harvest rate from the Eastern Population of Tundra Swans in 2007 was approximately 3.5% ... well below the allocated 5% harvest rate.

    The Management Plan for the Eastern Population of Tundra Swans (2007) has allocated a sport harvest rate of 5% with the distribution of 9,600 tags based upon a harvest success rate of 50% but the actual average long-term harvest success rate is only 37% ... providing an additional buffer to prevent an over harvest of Tundra Swans.

    It would appear that a 50:50 split between the subsistence harvest and the sport harvest is an equitable and sustainable part of the management plan.

    Western Population of Tundra Swans

    The Management Plan for the Western Population of Tundra Swans (2001) has allocated a subsistence harvest rate of 5% most of which would take place in the Y-K Delta of Alaska with the remaining from areas along the rest of the west coast of Alaska.

    In 2001 there were 5,399 Tundra Swans reported harvested from the Y-K Delta of Alaska and only 401 Tundra Swans reported harvested from areas along the rest of the west coast of Alaska for a total of 5,800 Tundra Swans reported harvested in that year.

    In 2015 there were 3,663 Tundra Swans reported harvested from the Y-K Delta of Alaska and no Tundra Swans reported harvested from areas along the rest of the west coast of Alaska.

    The Management Plan for the Western Population of Tundra Swans (2001) has allocated a sport harvest rate of 5% with the distribution of 3,150 tags based upon the actual average long-term harvest success rate of only 36% ... providing an additional buffer to prevent an over harvest of Tundra Swans. There are however an additional 900 (3 bird) permits for Alaska but most of these permits are not utilized by hunters.

    It would appear (based upon the 2015 harvest data) that the split between the subsistence harvest and the sport harvest was 3,663 birds to 1,125 birds but the distribution of the tags for the sport harvest was based upon the fact that the hunters in Utah, Nevada and Montana collectively would have a harvest success rate of only 36%. If all of the sport hunters had harvested a bird then both harvests would have been about the same. The sport harvest in Alaska (generally rather low) for 2015 was not available.

    Note: The reporting of harvested Tundra Swans in the spring and in the fall as well as the collection of their eggs by the Indigenous Peoples of Canada and the United States is based upon their cooperation with the Canadian Wildlife Service and the United States Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) respectively rather than by an obligation to do so.

    The Management Plan for the Western Population of Tundra Swans (2017) acknowledged that the annual subsistence harvest combined with the annual sport harvest will not be able to prevent the continual increase in the number of Tundra Swans in that population ... a good reason for the Province of Alberta to request a Tundra Swan season at this time.

    Please refer to Part 8 regarding "Who is Stopping a Tundra Swan Season" in Canada and what you can do to correct that from continuing in the future.

    Jerome Katchin, D.V.M.

  4. #13
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    An Ontario Tundra Swan Season (Part 8)

    Who is Stopping a Tundra Swan Season

    I thought that a brief review of some numbers would be beneficial for those individuals who may not know the number of active waterfowlers in both Canada and the United States as well as the number of ducks, geese and swans that are currently harvested every year.

    The following approximate numbers are for demonstration purposes only since the number of active waterfowlers reported in both Canada and the United States have increased over the last two (2) years.

    Recently published reports for the previous hunting seasons would indicate that the number of active waterfowlers in the United States have fluctuated from a little less than 1,000,000 to a little more than 1,000,000 and that the number of active waterfowlers in Canada have fluctuated from a little less than 100,000 to a little more than 100,000 ... so about 1,100,000 waterfowlers in total.

    Considering that there were a total of 9,600 tags available for the Eastern Population of Tundra Swans (at the time) and that there were a total of 3,150 tags plus 900 3-bird permits in Alaska available for the Western Population of Tundra Swans the total number of active waterfowlers who hunted Tundra Swans was probably less than 13,650 since not all of the tags and 3-bird permits may have been used.

    Note: The total number of active Tundra Swan hunters in the United States in any given year could only have been 13,650 out of an average of about 1,000,000 active waterfowlers ... about 1.36% of active waterfowlers.

    Recently published reports for the previous hunting seasons would indicate that the number of ducks harvested average about 12,000,000 per year and the number of geese harvested average about 3,000,000 per year ... so a little less than 12 ducks per waterfowler and a little less than 3 geese per waterfowler.

    Considering that there were a total of 9,600 tags available for the Eastern Population of Tundra Swans (at the time) with an average success rate of 37% and that there were a total of 3,150 tags plus 900 3-bird permits in Alaska available for the Western Population of Tundra Swans with an average success rate of 36% the total number of swans harvested would have been about 5,000 per year.

    Note: The hunting of Tundra Swans is not and will not be for every "waterfowler" just as the hunting of Moose is not and will not be for every "big game" hunter who may be satisfied just hunting deer.

    It will be the responsibility for those Canadian "waterfowlers" who want to be able to hunt Tundra Swans (without travelling to the United States to hunt our birds) to get involved by joining a local hunting club, becoming a member of the Ontario Federation of Anglers and Hunters as well as Delta Waterfowl and speak up in support of a limited (tag only) Tundra Swan season at this time.

    Representatives of the Canadian Wildlife Service have done their part (details to follow) and representatives of Delta Waterfowl are doing their part (details to follow) to implement a Tundra Swan season in Canada but "waterfowlers" must support their efforts at this time or continue to limit their waterfowling experience to ducks and geese. Remember that the term "waterfowl" includes ducks, geese and swans.

    Please refer to my Addendum A regarding what the Canadian Wildlife Service has done to facilitate the implementation of a limited (tag only) Tundra Swan Season in Canada.

    Jerome Katchin, D.V.M.

  5. #14
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    Who cares man seriously...

  6. #15
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    An Ontario Tundra Swan Season (Addendum A)

    The Canadian Wildlife Service Contribution

    I have included this Addendum A to reflect upon what the Canadian Wildlife Service has contributed (from my personal perspective) to implement a limited (tag only) Tundra Swan season in Canada.

    In September of 1990 I asked an enforcement officer for the Canadian Wildlife Service about the possibility of a limited (tag only) Tundra Swan season while attending the Hunting Show at the International Center in Mississauga. He told me (on no uncertain terms) that the Tundra Swan population could certainly sustain such a season in Canada but he thought that there was no "political desire" to implement one at that time.

    I patiently waited twenty (20) years before I would ask the question again in September of 2010 but this time I had obtained a copy of the Management Plan for the Eastern Population of Tundra Swans (2007). The representative of the CWS management (Ontario Region) that I talked to told me (on no uncertain terms) that "we will never have a Tundra Swan season in Canada until someone like you asks for one" and then assured me that he looked forward to reviewing my written proposal. I then carefully reviewed the Management Plan again prior to preparing and submitting my "Proposal for a Limited (Tag Only) Tundra Swan Season in Ontario" to the CWS for consideration in October of 2010. I subsequently provided this representative of the CWS management (Ontario Region) with some additional information regarding the implementation of a limited (tag only) Tundra Swan season in February of 2011.

    Note: I also talked to a representative of the CWS management (Prairie Region) in the fall of 2010 when I attempted to contact our Canadian representative who was the current member of the international committee that had revised the Management Plan for the Eastern Population of Tundra Swans in 2007 and he told me (on no uncertain terms) that if the Province of Ontario asked for a Tundra Swan season then the CWS would grant such a season.

    In April of 2011 the CWS announced that it had decided to conduct a Tundra Swan Season Assessment that would involve Ontario, Manitoba and Saskatchewan with an additional special provision for Quebec. I received a copy of this Tundra Swan Season Assessment after it was completed in August of 2013 and it fully supported a sustainable limited (tag only) Tundra Swan season for these three (3) provinces (as per the management plan) with a special provision for Quebec.

    I contacted the representative of the CWS management (Ontario Region) in September of 2014 to see if there had been any progress towards the implementation of a limited (tag only) Tundra Swan season since the completion of the Tundra Swan Season Assessment in August of 2013. After consulting with his co-workers he advised me in December of 2014 that the CWS needed to review and update the wording of the Migratory Birds Regulations since there was currently no provision for a "tag only" season for any migratory species but that this review would take approximately three (3) years ... to the end of 2017.

    Note: I was able to obtain letters of support for a limited (tag only) Tundra Swan season from the Saskatchewan Wildlife Federation (December of 2017), Delta Waterfowl (February of 2018) and the Manitoba Wildlife Federation (August of 2018) regarding the prairie provinces. This was prior to my financial partnership with Delta Waterfowl to conduct an Ontario "waterfowl survey" regarding the potential interest with Ontario waterfowlers for a limited (tag only) Tundra Swan season.

    Based upon the extensive cooperation that I have experienced with the representatives of the CWS management (as noted above) as well as more recent correspondence with them in January of 2020 it would appear that the problem now lies with the individual provinces and the waterfowling community.

    Please refer to my Addendum B regarding what Delta Waterfowl has done to facilitate the implementation of a limited (tag only) Tundra Swan season in Canada.

    Jerome Katchin, D.V.M.

  7. #16
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    An Ontario Tundra Swan Season (Addendum B)

    The Delta Waterfowl Contribution

    I have included this Addendum B to reflect upon what Delta Waterfowl has contributed (from my personal perspective) to implement a limited (tag only) Tundra Swan season in Canada.

    In January of 2011 (having submitted my proposal to the Canadian Wildlife Service in October of 2010) I wrote to the President to ask if Delta Waterfowl would support my proposal for a limited (tag only) Tundra Swan season in Ontario since Delta Waterfowl had repeatedly requested suggestions from its members. He told me (during a rather lengthy telephone conversation) that he was very interested in my proposal but would like to discuss the issue with the Vice President Policy for Canada to obtain his perspective on a limited (tag only) Tundra Swan season. The President then contacted me to advise me of two (2) concerns that had been raised ... the level of membership support for such a season (which was unknown) and the potential public opposition to such a season. Consequently he had to advise me that Delta Waterfowl could not support my proposal at that time.

    I then waited for over five (5) years before I resubmitted my proposal to the new President in August of 2016 requesting their support based upon the provisions for several Canadian hunting opportunities within the Management Plan for the Eastern Population of Tundra Swans (2007) and the results of the Tundra Swan Season Assessment conducted by the Canadian Wildlife Service between April of 2011 and August of 2013. The new President unfortunately had to advise me (however politely) that Delta Waterfowl would "remain silent" regarding Tundra Swan hunting in Canada essentially for the same reasons that had previously been provided to me. I nevertheless continued to provide the new President with periodic updates regarding Tundra Swan issues.

    In December of 2017 (having recently obtained a letter of support for a Tundra Swan season from the Saskatchewan Wildlife Federation) I wrote a series of additional letters to the Board of Directors that extended into the new year. Delta Waterfowl subsequently submitted a letter to the Canadian Wildlife Service requesting consideration for a limited (tag only) Tundra Swan season for our western provinces ... this was finally a step in the right direction.

    I then received an invitation in June of 2018 to meet with a representative of Delta Waterfowl to discuss the possibility of me becoming a "partner" with Delta Waterfowl to pursue my proposal for a limited (tag only) Tundra Swan season in Ontario by financially sponsoring a "waterfowl survey" of its Ontario members ... something that I had previously suggested. During this meeting I agreed to provide a grant from The Dr. Jerome Katchin Waterfowl Foundation to Delta Waterfowl for the purpose of conducting this "waterfowl survey" that subsequently demonstrated a very strong level of support by Ontario waterfowlers (members as well as non-members) for a limited (tag only) Tundra Swan season.

    Note: Several additional grants have subsequently been made to Delta Waterfowl for their advocacy work regarding the results of this survey (with a priority for a Sandhill Crane Season, Delisting the Mute Swan from the List of Protected Species and a Tundra Swan Season) along with additional annual grants for their Great Lakes Initiative and their Hunting Heritage and Conservation Center.

    Based upon the extensive cooperation that I have recently experienced with representatives of Delta Waterfowl (as noted above) as well as the support that I have obtained from them it would appear that the problem now lies with the individual provinces and their respective waterfowling community.

    Please refer to my Addendum C regarding what the Ontario Federation of Anglers and Hunters (OFAH) has contributed to facilitate the implementation of a limited (tag only) Tundra Swan season in Ontario.

    Jerome Katchin, D.V.M.

  8. #17
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    An Ontario Tundra Swan Season (Addendum C)

    The Ontario Federation of Anglers and Hunters Contribution

    I have included this Addendum C to reflect upon what the Ontario Federation of Anglers and Hunters (OFAH) has contributed (from my personal perspective) to implement a limited (tag only) Tundra Swan season in Ontario.

    In January of 2010 before I had even considered submitting a proposal for a limited (tag only) Tundra Swan season to the Canadian Wildlife Service an individual told me (on no uncertain terms) that I would not receive any support from the OFAH for such a season ... not then not ever. However this same individual also told me that if I submitted a proposal for a Mourning Dove season that the OFAH would definitely support my proposal since they already had prepared a "position statement" regarding such a season.

    I consequently submitted a proposal for a Mourning Dove season in September of 2010 before submitting my proposal for a limited (tag only) Tundra Swan season and my proposal to remove the Mute Swan from the List of Protected Species in October of 2010. Although all three (3) of my proposals were discussed at the Ontario Waterfowl Advisory Committee (OWAC) meeting in November of 2010 only my proposal for a Mourning Dove season received the support required to proceed with such a season. This was the start of a long hard struggle to convince the individuals involved that a limited (tag only) Tundra Swan season was warranted in Ontario but at least a Mourning Dove season would be forthcoming in the near future.

    In April of 2011 the Board of Directors for the Long Point Waterfowlers' Association (an OFAH affiliated club) permitted me to present my proposal for a limited (tag only) Tundra Swan season at our Annual General Meeting and 20% of the members in attendance completed the survey included in my informative handout with 85% of the respondents fully supporting my proposal.

    I applied to serve on the OFAH "waterfowl and wetlands" committee in January of 2018 (after having received a letter from them in September of 2017 stating that my Tundra Swan proposal had merit) with the hope of contributing what I had learned about the current Tundra Swan seasons in the United States but my application was placed on "hold" until the new president elect took office ... unfortunately nothing ever became of my application. A representative of the OFAH advised me however that they were now considering a potential Sandhill Crane season since there appeared to be more interest in hunting this species and so I agreed to support such a season.

    In June of 2018 a representative of the OFAH reassured me in a letter that my Tundra Swan proposal had merit but that their current priority continued to be for a Sandhill Crane season and thanked me for my continued support with this issue. In the spring of 2019 Delta Waterfowl provided the OFAH with the results of the "waterfowl survey" of Ontario hunters that was conducted in the fall of 2018 (refer to Addendum B for more information). The Canadian Wildlife Service subsequently declined a request from the OFAH in the fall of 2019 for a Sandhill Crane season (refer to Ontario Out of Doors, January/February 2020, page 16).

    I eventually established an understanding with the OFAH in March of 2021 that included my financial support for their current advocacy work regarding Sandhill Cranes and Mute Swans as well as for Tundra Swans in the future.

    Based upon the cooperation and understanding that I have established with several representatives of the OFAH (as noted above) as well as their recent advocacy work in establishing a Sandhill Crane season and delisting the Mute Swan from the List of Protected Species it is now time for those Ontario waterfowlers who have not yet expressed their desire for a limited (tag only) Tundra Swan season to let their local OFAH affiliated club know of their support for such a season.

    Please refer to my Addendum D regarding how you can prepare for the implementation of a limited (tag only) Tundra Swan season in Ontario.

    Jerome Katchin, D.V.M.

  9. #18
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    Hello Guys,

    I am having a problem posting my "Addendum D" here ... tried several times yesterday and today without success.

    Jerome

  10. #19
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    Hello Guys,

    I am still having a problem posting my Addendum D here ... tried several times yesterday and today without success.

    I have just "copy and paste" the parts and addendums in the past but that method is not working now.

    Jerome

  11. #20
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    Testing: "Ontario Tundra Swan Season"
    What can I but enumerate old themes,
    First that sea-rider Oisin led by the nose
    Through three enchanted islands, allegorical dreams,
    Vain gaiety, vain battle, vain repose,
    Themes of the embittered heart, or so it seems.
    -- "The Circus Animalsí Desertion" by William Butler Yeats

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