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Thread: Would you do it?

  1. #1

    Default Would you do it?

    I'm having an ethical debate with one of my friends as to whether or not this is morally correct, and whether the following scenario is poaching or not.

    Ok, so here's a scenario:

    You're supporting a family with kids. Due to the economical situation, and the cost of food, the grocery bill is preventing other things from getting paid. You live in the middle of the city, but less than a mile from where you are located are several large houses with lots of land. The land is posted "No Hunting" and have notices up about poaching violations. There are deer ALL OVER the place. Literally, every time you walk by, you spook somewhere between 20-30 deer, depending on the time of day. Now, at this time of year there are quite a few fawns, but the Stags are still around, or course. While most of the lands are posted no hunting, there are a few specific areas where the deer like to bed down that is NOT POSTED. It's not even fenced, really. The deer are extremely accustomed to humans, and only spook at really loud noises or large dogs. While it is illegal to discharge a firearm inside the city limits, I do not believe there are city ordinances regarding taking game, or using a bow and arrow. That being said, if you believed you could quitely take a stag with a bow and butcher it on the spot, would you attempt it, if it meant cutting your grocery bill significantly? Would you attempt a different method other than a bow?
    Last edited by Alpine_Sapper; 04-02-2008 at 10:40 AM.
    If ye love wealth greater than liberty, the tranquility of servitude greater than the animating contest for freedom, go home from us in peace. We seek not your counsel, nor your arms. Crouch down and lick the hand that feeds you; and may posterity forget that ye were our countrymen.
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  2. #2
    Administrator Rick's Avatar
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    No, I wouldn't. I don't want to drone on but the financial situation described is not "someone else's" fault. If you are running that tight then you are living at or above your means. That's contrary to what you should be doing on a fiscal level. Perhaps a second or third income is needed OR you reduce expenditures to bring things back in line.

    That said, based solely on the information you provided, there are many other options available to you and your family. I'll make the assumption here that you have no financial options as outlined above. You live in a city so contact a food pantry, your church, the Salvation Army or your city or county welfare office and inquire about assistance. Talk to a game warden about harvesting a road kill deer. Those guys are pretty amiable about helping out.

    If, for whatever reason, none of that is not an option then talk to the landowner. Explain the situation and offer to clean up your mess and/or take two and butcher one for the land owner as payment. Or do some work around their property as payment.

    If they say no and there are that many deer around then there are probably abundant deer outside the city limits as well.

    I'm not black and white on the laws. There will always be exceptions but I don't think this is the case here. Not with all the other options that are available.

  3. #3

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    Quote Originally Posted by Rick View Post
    No, I wouldn't. I don't want to drone on but the financial situation described is not "someone else's" fault. If you are running that tight then you are living at or above your means. That's contrary to what you should be doing on a fiscal level. Perhaps a second or third income is needed OR you reduce expenditures to bring things back in line.

    That said, based solely on the information you provided, there are many other options available to you and your family. I'll make the assumption here that you have no financial options as outlined above. You live in a city so contact a food pantry, your church, the Salvation Army or your city or county welfare office and inquire about assistance. Talk to a game warden about harvesting a road kill deer. Those guys are pretty amiable about helping out.

    If, for whatever reason, none of that is not an option then talk to the landowner. Explain the situation and offer to clean up your mess and/or take two and butcher one for the land owner as payment. Or do some work around their property as payment.

    If they say no and there are that many deer around then there are probably abundant deer outside the city limits as well.

    I'm not black and white on the laws. There will always be exceptions but I don't think this is the case here. Not with all the other options that are available.
    First, this isn't something I'm looking at doing. It was kinda one of those "Man, I'd like to..." and my buddy is like "It's illegal!" And then the argument started, continue over a few beers, and I decided to get some outside viewpoints on the issue. My point about the financial issues is simply that it would ease some tension on the grocery bill.

    So you would consider it poaching? Immoral? Or simply illegal?
    If ye love wealth greater than liberty, the tranquility of servitude greater than the animating contest for freedom, go home from us in peace. We seek not your counsel, nor your arms. Crouch down and lick the hand that feeds you; and may posterity forget that ye were our countrymen.
    Samuel Adams
    Dogs are not my whole life, but they make my life whole.

  4. #4
    Administrator Rick's Avatar
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    I took it for what you described. Just a "what if" kind of a thing. I think, under these circumstances, all three, IMHO. I'm sure a judge would say illegal and poaching. As for the immoral, I guess that goes with what you believe in your heart at the time. Someone may truly believe that's their only option to feed their kids so I can't say that would be immoral if that's what they believed.

  5. #5
    Senior Member Ole WV Coot's Avatar
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    I guess I am rude, crude and socially unacceptable but if my family needs food for whatever reason I could drop any animal and not worry about it. I don't think it will ever come to that but I kinda do what I have to do. I survive, done things I ain't proud of but I am here to tell about it.

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    Senior Member nell67's Avatar
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    Persoanlly,I would do it,if it meant I did not have to rely on the food stamp program,you bet,if I land in jail ,so be it,I seriously doubt that they would take the meat away from my kids knowing they were eating and tell them they had to go to a soup kitchen or food bank to eat.
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  7. #7
    Bush Master MCBushbaby's Avatar
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    You could argue the overpopulation of deer would benefit from select hunting, even if that meant poaching. So long as you and maybe only a handful of others hunt, and limit your take per year, it will cull the herd and prevent starvation-related die-offs. On the other hand, if you can't afford your bills for whatever reason, you shouldn't steal from neighbors better off. Bridging this ethical gap, if you had to resort to poaching, you might broker a deal with the land owner arguing my first point. Maybe give him 20% of each kill, or learn to professionally tan hides and make him/her something nice from the pelt. It's "mutual poaching"
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  8. #8

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    As far as I'm concerned subsistence use of resources should trump all other uses. If I saw someone popping an animal for food to feed their family I would turn my back and walk away. Game laws are for sport hunting and totally ignore subsistence hunting which should trump any other use of wildlife. I have not been in the position to do it so I'm not sure what I would do myself.

  9. #9
    Senior Member Tahyo's Avatar
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    I grew up in the Cajun culture of sw La. where poaching is considered, or use to be considered part of the culture. It was most always done to put food on the table regardless of laws. I won't debate whether it was right or wrong, but it was a matter of "getting by" for the people I did know who did it. I'm not saying there weren't some who did it just to "poach", but for some of those people it was a means of keeping food on the table from time to time.
    Poaching is illegal, so I thing the two go hand in hand, but immoral.... I think Rick said it pretty well. Immorality to me is something that each person would have to decide

    I think if it were a case of "tshtf" type scenario, I would have no problem harvesting anything I needed to keep the family fed. One of my favorite sayings regarding that outlook is, "Insure your survival, keep your dog and neighbors fat".

  10. #10
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    I think it as completely illegal and down right wrong. What ever happened to asking the land owners for permission? Is it so hard? They post those signs to keep a bunch of self professed commando's running around their property shooting everything in sight, when their children are out exploring and playing.

    Last year I caught two guys poaching on my property. Found their hidden truck on the line road. I went back to the house, got the tractor and drug it back in park all the way back to the barns. I have NO TRESSPASSING and NO HUNTING signs posted at every entrance and they still chose to trespass. Took them 3 days to grow balls big enough to come and get their truck back.

    I have no problem with hunters. They have to ask me for permission is all. I want to let them know where they can hunt, where my livestock is and what roads they cannot hunt near. I want control as to how many people are on my land and how many animals are being taken. I want to know my kids are safe walking home from the bus.

    Simple: ask permission.

  11. #11
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    As for being in need, just ask as well. I always have meat in the freezer, we would glad to give you some to get you by.

  12. #12

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    Quote Originally Posted by BraggSurvivor View Post
    I think it as completely illegal and down right wrong. What ever happened to asking the land owners for permission? Is it so hard? They post those signs to keep a bunch of self professed commando's running around their property shooting everything in sight, when their children are out exploring and playing.

    Last year I caught two guys poaching on my property. Found their hidden truck on the line road. I went back to the house, got the tractor and drug it back in park all the way back to the barns. I have NO TRESSPASSING and NO HUNTING signs posted at every entrance and they still chose to trespass. Took them 3 days to grow balls big enough to come and get their truck back.

    I have no problem with hunters. They have to ask me for permission is all. I want to let them know where they can hunt, where my livestock is and what roads they cannot hunt near. I want control as to how many people are on my land and how many animals are being taken. I want to know my kids are safe walking home from the bus.

    Simple: ask permission.
    I totally agree with that.

    My issue is that the land that is unfenced is also unposted, and not owned by any of the homeowners in the area from what I can tell, since it's not fenced. It's actually in between two subdivisions with a television station on the back side, with a large lot of land across the street that IS Posted. It's really kind of unfit for development so appears to have been left alone. The deer don't apparently read english very well, so they cross the street and bed down in the wooded unposted land across the street. I would never consider taking game from a posted area without permission, but I figured since it wasn't posted, it was pretty much "free game" if one was so inclined.

    My only real concern would be whether the landowner who posted all the signs actually imported the deer to roam his land for aethetic reasons. Then, I guess I'd have to consider it stealing, but otherwise they're part of natures bounty afaik.
    Last edited by Alpine_Sapper; 04-02-2008 at 12:02 PM.
    If ye love wealth greater than liberty, the tranquility of servitude greater than the animating contest for freedom, go home from us in peace. We seek not your counsel, nor your arms. Crouch down and lick the hand that feeds you; and may posterity forget that ye were our countrymen.
    Samuel Adams
    Dogs are not my whole life, but they make my life whole.

  13. #13
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    I dont know if I would want to take the chance of getting caught being in city limits. You'd be in a real pickle getting caught by the landowners or the police. Who would feed the kids and pay the bills when your sitting in jail?


    Buy two rabbits and within 6 weeks youd have all the meat you would need.

  14. #14
    Bush Master MCBushbaby's Avatar
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    There is such a thing called "recreational trespass" for non-farmland in Michigan. Basically a physical 'loophole' in your sign postings where, if I stand at point X and cannot see a no-trespassing-type sign, I can enter at point X and be within my rights even if I know it's private property. Likewise if you have a stream or river running through your property, I could walk along it up to high tide mark (usually just the banks for inland rivers) and be within my rights. You need to be aware of this stuff when bushwhacking out of state and national parks since everything is owned by someone these days.
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  15. #15
    Senior Member nell67's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BraggSurvivor View Post
    I dont know if I would want to take the chance of getting caught being in city limits. You'd be in a real pickle getting caught by the landowners or the police. Who would feed the kids and pay the bills when your sitting in jail?


    Buy two rabbits and within 6 weeks youd have all the meat you would need.
    takes a little longer than 6 weeks to get the offspring up to butchering size,LOL.
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    Quote Originally Posted by nell67 View Post
    takes a little longer than 6 weeks to get the offspring up to butchering size,LOL.

    You can skin and butcher 5 rabbits to every chicken given the same amount of time. Ive butchers broilers at 6 weeks.

  17. #17
    Senior Member nell67's Avatar
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    I've raised rabbits all my life,and the average age to a desirable butchering weight is 4 months,you can cut the time down by cross breeding with some of the larger breed rabbits,but only by about 2 weeks.maybe you grow them faster in Canada?

    And yes 6 weeksi s about average for butchering chickens.
    Last edited by nell67; 01-11-2011 at 10:01 PM.
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  18. #18

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    Quote Originally Posted by nell67 View Post
    I've raised rabbits all my life,and the average age to a desiraable buttchering weight is 43 months,you can cut the time down by cross breeding with some of the larger breed rabbits,but only by about 2 weeks.maybe you grow them faster in Canada?

    And yes 6 weeksi s about average for butchering chickens.
    Do you raise rabbits for pets, food, or resale ( or some reason I'm not seeing?)
    If ye love wealth greater than liberty, the tranquility of servitude greater than the animating contest for freedom, go home from us in peace. We seek not your counsel, nor your arms. Crouch down and lick the hand that feeds you; and may posterity forget that ye were our countrymen.
    Samuel Adams
    Dogs are not my whole life, but they make my life whole.

  19. #19
    Administrator Rick's Avatar
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    I had a buddy that decided to poach ducks from a boat at night with a spotlight. His only problem was the game warden was watching the show. They took the shotgun, his spotlight, his boat and he got to pay $5000.00 for poaching a migratory bird with no stamp or license. Let's see, pay $5000 that I haven't got or ask permission or seek help.....let's see...

  20. #20
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    nell, I always (use to) butchered at 6-7 weeks old, just before weaning. I liked the meat better and the texture was more like veal. Their weight was about 2-3 lbs dressed. Cant remember the breed.....i'll post when my wife gets home.

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