President — Craig Sweet, 1825 Kirkwood St., Saint Charles, IA 50240; phone: 641-764-2758
Vice President — Randy Mitchell, Iowa Fall, IA; phone: 641-648-6787
Secretary — Patty Kempf, 3371 130th St., Jamaica, IA 50128; e-mail: email@example.com
Treasurer — Chris Grillot, 2769 110th Ave., Wheatland, IA 52777; phone: 563-374-1074;
FTA Director — Gene Purdy, 521 Edwin Place, Fontanelle, IA 50846; phone: 641-745-8841
NTA Director — George Scalf, 123 N. Madison Ave., Ottumwa, IA 52501; phone: 641-682-3937;
• Individual membership including subscription to The Trapper & Predator Caller — $15
• Lifetime membership with subscription — $250
Complete membership application on first page of association section and send dues to:
Jamaica, IA 50129
Greetings to all. Hope that you had a good holiday season. As you read this, there will be about two weeks left before the close of the regular trapping season, which closes on Jan. 31. Beaver season will remain open until April 1 as it has the past few years. Remember the new ruling for public road right-of-way trapping, which states that ALL trapping equipment must be removed from public road right-of-ways at the close of season. Hope you had or are having a good trapping season. The snow and cold have slowed the harvest numbers.
In my area, coyote sign is very sparse, not a single track at the home, but have saw sign of fox being present. I really enjoy trapping coyote, but don’t miss them when it comes to the skinning, which was usually done cold. My power skinner is all muscle power, too stubborn and old fashioned to change at this point in time. Received a letter from NAFA indicating they were canceling the January sale due to the limited quantities of wild fur expected to be received, but some could be sold by private treaty. All fur not sold would be combined with fur being offer during the March sale.
Jan. 31 at 10 a.m. will be the Winter Board of Directors meeting in Ames at the State Tree Nursery. All ITA members are welcome to attend.
Feb. 25-28 the ITA will again have a booth set up at the National Pheasant Fest, which will be back in Des Moines again this year. March 12-14 the booth will be at the UNI-dome Sports & Vacation show in Cedar Falls. Stop by while at one of these events to renew your membership, become a member or just say hello. The State Legislature will convene in January. The ITA will have eyes and ears present during the session for any sportsman issues that my arise. Better go for now. Til next time, have a safe and enjoyable close to the trapping season.
— Craig Sweet
NTA DIRECTOR’S REPORT
Greetings, and Happy Valentine’s Day.
Trapping season in Iowa closes on Sunday, Jan. 31, with the exception of beaver, which runs until April 1. I hope all of you are having a great season and that the thieves are leaving you alone. They certainly have helped themselves to animals and traps in our area. Remember the new rule that all traps, stakes or non-indigenous set-making material must be removed from public road right-of-ways by the last day of season.
The statewide quota of 500 river otter was reached on Dec. 2. The quota of 200 bobcats was reached by Nov. 30, only three weeks after the season opened, which certainly indicates a healthy population of bobcats in the state of Iowa. Last year, the quota on bobcats was to have been raised to 250 and additional harvest counties added. Unfortunately, ONE person got that all changed. Please contact your local conservation officer and report any sightings of bobcats in your area so that the quota can be increased as well as an increase in legal counties.
The DNR Commission will be meeting in Des Moines on Feb. 11 and March 11, at the Wallace State Office Building. As of October 2009, we have two new commissioners (replacing William Bird, who moved to South Dakota, and Carol Kramer, who resigned the Commission after 10 years). They are Dennis Schemmel of Grimes and Margo Underwood of Mason City. The public is welcome to attend any of these meetings, and you can speak at these meetings by simply filling out a card as you enter. Check out the DNR Web site for additional information on meeting dates, commission minutes, etc. The NRC Commission will be considering an increase in bobcat quotas and an increase in counties. Contact them and ask that this be done.
We received word the first part of December that the Animal Welfare Institute has appealed the District Court’s Judgment in the Maine Lynx Ruling. The NTA has been in contact with the Maine Trappers Association attorney and we are set to proceed.
Our family was successful during the second shotgun deer season here in Iowa, although the weather turned bitterly cold for several days, forcing the deer into the standing corn.
The Iowa Legislative Session opened under the golden dome on Monday, Jan. 11. Have you visited with your Senator or Representative lately and found out how they view the use of renewable natural resources?
Our FBU banquet has been set for Saturday, March 20. When General Organizer John Daniel set the Midwest Regional Conference, it was also set for March 20. After informing him of the conflict, he was gracious enough to change the Midwest Regional to March 13. I will again be representing Iowa at this event at which NTA Directors and affiliate officers are updated on NTA activities.
I just received word that the 2010 Youth Field Day in Ottumwa is set for Saturday, May 22. I will again be helping with the trapping segment of the program.
I am sorry that in my last column I was remiss in extending my sincere condolences to the families of two great gentlemen who passed away in 2009 and who were dedicated members of the National Trappers Association: Dave Gerlach of Iowa and Marty Scanlon, President and NTA Director for the New Jersey Trappers Association. They will be sincerely missed.
— George E. Scalf