A simple solution

Dear sir:
On Sept. 6, 2002, the minister of Natural Resources announced a committee to address the nuisance bear problem in and around communities like ours all across Northwestern Ontario.
A few years ago, the former minister of Natural Resources and the premier at that time announced the closure of the spring bear hunt all across Ontario, accusing hunters and outfitters of shooting sows and orphaning their cubs while, at the same time, increasing the fall hunt by opening the season two weeks earlier.
As most of us know, the people from the United States come here to hunt bears. When a bear is taken, it has to have an export permit before leaving Ontario and on that export permit it states whether it is a male or female.
I’ve been an outfitter here for more than 16 years and have filled out many of these forms. I can tell you, without a doubt, that most of the bears are males, and in 20 years of hunting and outfitting, I have not had a hunter shoot any sows with cubs in the spring or fall.
The loss of the spring hunt was caused by animal rights groups that used misinformation in order to persuade the minister to cancel the spring hunt in the first place.
Now it’s our time to speak up and let this new committee know the nuisance bear problem is due to the cancellation of the spring hunt. And not only did we lose the hunt, we lost a large amount of tourist dollars generated by hunters coming here.
By reinstating the spring hunt, we not only help solve the nuisance bear problem, we can fix a wrong done to hunters and outfitters all across Ontario.
I urge you to let the nuisance bear committee and the MNR know there is a solution to the bear problems and it doesn’t cost taxpayers any money. Please contact the MNR and the nuisance bear committee and tell them to bring back the spring hunt.
Clifford R. Long
Cobblestone Lodge
Ignace, Ont.