123

The worst Christmas story ever: Wisconsin vs. Charlotte the deer (Read 1313 times)

     

     

     

     

     

     

     


    Needs more cowbell!

      I don't really get the CWD angle.  If she's choosing to stay penned-in with horses and not mingling with other whitetails, then how is CWD even an issue?  And if she were infected I'd think she'd be showing signs of it, already.

       

      I'm not happy about our neighbors who illegally feed deer and contribute to the risk of CWD (as well as encouraging large herds of whitetails to overrun this residential 'hood), but this scenario is entirely different.  This is a solitary deer that does't appear to be a CWD risk factor from where I sit.

       

      Bureaucracy is stupid.  This is an animal that is obviously healthy and happy where she is.  This guy is obviously not going out of his way to "collect" deer as pets, just humanely protecting this ONE who got dealt a really unfortunate hand.

      I shoot pretty things! ~

      '14 Goals:

      • 6 duathlons (1 Olympic distance)

      • 130#s (and stay there, gotdammit!)

        A neighbor knew that Graaf had rescued other critters, from horses to a litter of raccoons, and even nursed an injured red-tailed hawk.

        Graaf tried enticing Charlotte with powdered puppy formula. They fed her the milk from a bottle.

         

        He tried to place the deer with rescue shelters. But none could take her, per regulations.

         

        Charlotte seems quite healthy now, but she does come from a CWD zone. Graaf refused to turn her over to the state. Walworth County prosecutors charged Graaf with "unauthorized taking of deer from wild." The DNR then sent him a letter stating that no one may possess any wild animal.

        The letter also states that since Charlotte has become "habituated" — meaning that she's now used to people — she can't be released into the wild.

         

         

         

         

        Worst ever?  Not to me.  Someone breaks a law and is suprised that the DNR isn't happy about it.  

        In an infinite universe, the one thing sentient life cannot afford to have is a sense of proportion

        http://htwins.net/scale2/scale2.swf?bordercolor=white&fb_source=message

         

         

         

          I don't really get the CWD angle.  

           

          It means a shelter is not interested in taking the animal for fear of spreading a disease.  You could probably kill Charlotte and check to see if she's clear of CWD.  But that kind of defeats the purpose of feeding her milk and puppy food. 

          In an infinite universe, the one thing sentient life cannot afford to have is a sense of proportion

          http://htwins.net/scale2/scale2.swf?bordercolor=white&fb_source=message

           

           

           


          Needs more cowbell!

            From the video it didn't sound like he so much enticed her with puppy formula as fed her after she had lain on the side of the road where her mother died for 4 days.

             

            The thing with CWD is I've always been under the understanding that ALL deer are assumed to carry CWD, even if they don't.  At least in MI I've never heard of "zones."  I would assume that WI is pretty much the same.

             

            I just don't see how this guy caring for this tame deer is a danger to other deer anymore than the deer would be a danger to other deer were it not tame.  If anything it's less of a risk, since it's apparently not going out of its way to hang around with its own kind.

            I shoot pretty things! ~

            '14 Goals:

            • 6 duathlons (1 Olympic distance)

            • 130#s (and stay there, gotdammit!)

              At least in MI I've never heard of "zones."  I would assume that WI is pretty much the same.

               

              I just don't see how this guy caring for this tame deer is a danger to other deer anymore than the deer would be a danger to other deer were it not tame.  If anything it's less of a risk, since it's apparently not going out of its way to hang around with its own kind.

               

              In WI they do have zones.  If taking a deer from a CWD zone you are supposed to check it.  A shelter will not take a deer from a CWD zone for fear of speading a nasty disease.

               

              It sounds to me more like a situation where people are asking the DNR to turn a blind eye and not use their regulations, which for the most part are based on good logic. 

               

              Regulations don't always fit the individual case.  Is there a sound reason to look the other way here?  Maybe.  Is there a sound reason to enforce the DNR position?  Maybe.  I just don't know for sure so I don't know I can say that I think the DNR is acting badly. 

              In an infinite universe, the one thing sentient life cannot afford to have is a sense of proportion

              http://htwins.net/scale2/scale2.swf?bordercolor=white&fb_source=message

               

               

               


              Needs more cowbell!

                Regulations don't always fit the individual case.  Is there a sound reason to look the other way here?  Maybe.  Is there a sound reason to enforce the DNR position?  Maybe.  I just don't know for sure so I don't know I can say that I think the DNR is acting badly. 

                 

                Yeah, that's kind of the crux of the whole thing.  I wonder if they would bend the rules if he built his fence high enough to guarantee that the deer couldn't escape.  Seems like that could be an easy solution.

                I shoot pretty things! ~

                '14 Goals:

                • 6 duathlons (1 Olympic distance)

                • 130#s (and stay there, gotdammit!)


                Feeling the growl again

                  I don't really get the CWD angle.  If she's choosing to stay penned-in with horses and not mingling with other whitetails, then how is CWD even an issue?  And if she were infected I'd think she'd be showing signs of it, already.

                   

                   

                  CWD takes a long time to show up (think mad cow disease) and by the time you know an animal is infected it has probably already spread it to other animals.  Deer being around domestic ungulates risks CWD getting into those herds, so it's a red flag for them to see a semi-tame deer spending all its time there because someone raised it to do so.  It is highly, HIGHLY unlikely that the deer is isolated from other deer; I have an 8ft fence around my property (used to be an elk farm) and deer jump it all the time.  I doubt this person has an 8ft fence around a horse pasture so the deer is likely still interacting with other deer and then staying around the horses a lot.

                   

                  WI has gone to extraordinary lengths to try and nip the CWD thing in the bud...whether it is a futile effort or not is a valid question for another debate.  They have virtually exterminated the herd in parts of the state, trying to reduce inter-herd contact to the point that the disease dies out.  This has infuriated a lot of hunters up there.  A lot of places have also eliminated feeding/baiting of deer to reduce interaction though I seriously question the assumption that deer won't hang around together over non-bait food sources.

                   

                  I know it's a feel-good story but bad things happen to animals in nature all the time when someone is not there to take them in and hand-raise them; it's not cruelty it's just nature.  This person put themselves in this position by choosing to violate the law for this one animal.  It's too bad they can't send it to a petting zoo or something, but if you were a petting zoo and someone offered you an animal that potentially had CWD would you take it and risk having to kill off all of your animals if it turns out to have been infected?  That's the risk they would be taking by accepting the deer, even if it were legal.  There are legitimate reasons that there are laws against taking in and raising wild animals.

                   

                  Years ago we came across a fawn in almost the exact same scenario.  It was fall and it had been born too late and was clearly not going to make it through on its own and was hanging around the mother's carcass in the ditch.  After 2 days of driving by watching it slowly starve a buddy of mine shot it (it was deer season) and used up his doe tag even though it was not really edible...just didn't want it suffering when the end game was inevitable.  Had deer season not been open he could not have done that without getting in legal trouble and it eventually would have starved to death.  If he had, while we might have applauded the sympathetic sentiment, when one chooses to break the law they should not be surprised when there are consequences.

                  "If you want to be a bad a$s, then do what a bad a$s does.  There's your pep talk for today.  Go Run." -- Slo_Hand

                   


                  Feeling the growl again

                    Yeah, that's kind of the crux of the whole thing.  I wonder if they would bend the rules if he built his fence high enough to guarantee that the deer couldn't escape.  Seems like that could be an easy solution.

                     

                    At least in MI, no.  I know someone who put up a deer-proof fence.  The lengths to which the DNR went to make sure that not a single wild deer was fenced in were ludicrous.  THAT was clearly bureacracy run amok.  The taxpayers paid for several days worth of state worker salaries for them to traipse around the property looking for a single fresh track.

                    "If you want to be a bad a$s, then do what a bad a$s does.  There's your pep talk for today.  Go Run." -- Slo_Hand

                     


                    No Talent Drips

                      It sounds to me more like a situation where people are asking the DNR to turn a blind eye and not use their regulations, which for the most part are based on good sound logic.  

                      Logic don't care none...but I do.Wink

                       Dei Gratia

                       

                        It really does seem to be a lose/lose story for all involved, doesn't it?

                         

                        A well intentioned person tried to do the right thing, but really, it wasn't right.

                         

                         

                         

                         

                         

                         

                         


                        Needs more cowbell!

                          Years ago we came across a fawn in almost the exact same scenario.  It was fall and it had been born too late and was clearly not going to make it through on its own and was hanging around the mother's carcass in the ditch.  After 2 days of driving by watching it slowly starve a buddy of mine shot it (it was deer season) and used up his doe tag even though it was not really edible...just didn't want it suffering when the end game was inevitable.  Had deer season not been open he could not have done that without getting in legal trouble and it eventually would have starved to death.  If he had, while we might have applauded the sympathetic sentiment, when one chooses to break the law they should not be surprised when there are consequences.

                           

                          Yeah...very true.  I'm guessing this deer is at least 16 months old from the timeline, so it definitely wouldn't have been rifle season when they found it.  It's unfortunate at this point that they couldn't have simply put it out of its misery.  Perhaps that's a law that needs to be changed--the ability to kill a nursing deer if the mother is deceased.  It's obviously not a case of poaching, then.

                           

                          What you say about the bans on baiting deer rings pretty true (and I know those laws were on the books in WI back in the late 70s, at least).  I rarely ever see deer in groups of less than 3-4, even way far away from homes.  I'm not sure that the bans on feeding/baiting really do much to prevent deer from congregating.  They're herd animals.  Gathering in groups and moving around that way is pretty much their MO.

                          I shoot pretty things! ~

                          '14 Goals:

                          • 6 duathlons (1 Olympic distance)

                          • 130#s (and stay there, gotdammit!)


                          Feeling the growl again

                             I'm not sure that the bans on feeding/baiting really do much to prevent deer from congregating.  They're herd animals.  Gathering in groups and moving around that way is pretty much their MO.

                             

                            It makes me wonder how the state agencies who manage game populations seem to be so clueless as to animal behavior and what actually goes on out there...like this year in Montana when they were saying how well the herds came through a nasty winter then we actually spend time in the herds' habitat and find that the population is way, way down and the hillsides littered with winterkilled animals.  You'd think those paid to do those jobs would spend a bit of time with boots on the ground.

                            "If you want to be a bad a$s, then do what a bad a$s does.  There's your pep talk for today.  Go Run." -- Slo_Hand

                             

                              I can think of very few wildlife "management" solutions that are ever win/win for anything.

                               

                              Randomly, this made me think of John Denver's Alphie the Christmas tree: "So in your Christmas prayers this year, Alfie asked me if I'd ask you to say a prayer for the wind, and the water, and the wood, and those who live there, too."

                              Come all you no-hopers, you jokers and rogues
                              We're on the road to nowhere, let's find out where it goes


                              Needs more cowbell!

                                Randomly, this made me think of John Denver's Alphie the Christmas tree: "So in your Christmas prayers this year, Alfie asked me if I'd ask you to say a prayer for the wind, and the water, and the wood, and those who live there, too."

                                 

                                You just reminded me how much I miss that guy this time of the year.  I need to track down my JD/Muppets' Christmas CD...

                                I shoot pretty things! ~

                                '14 Goals:

                                • 6 duathlons (1 Olympic distance)

                                • 130#s (and stay there, gotdammit!)

                                123