Minnesota Trappers Association January 2009 Report

President — Gary Meis, 69555 One Mile Rd., Bruno, MN 55712

Vice President — Tim Bauer, 17290 155th Ave. N.E., Foley, MN 56329

Secretary — Liz Thom, 173 Prairie Lake Rd., Wright, MN 55798 e-mail:wlthom@frontiernet.net

Treasurer — Tricia Coons, 403 Wood Ave., Bemidji, MN 56601 e-mail: MTATrish@paulbunyan.net

Membership Coordinator
— Kathy Peterson, 57124 Cty Rd., Northhome, MN 56661; e-mail:
kpeterso@paulbunyan.net

Director of Trapper Education — Deb Offerdahl, 14788 Lynx Rd., Milaca, MN 56353;

Mandatory Trappers Education Director — Kenneth Olson, 353 Stearns Ave., Paynesville, MN 56362-1211; e-mail: mta-ed@clearwire.net

Membership Options:
• Individual membership including subscription to The Trapper & Predator Caller — $20
• Junior (under 16) with subscription — $12
• Senior (over 65) with subscription — $12
• Lifetime membership with subscription — $350

Complete membership application on first page of
association section and send dues to:
MTA, Membership Coordinator
Kathy Peterson
57124 Cty Rd., Northhome, MN 56661

President’s Report
Director of Trapper Education’s Report
District 5 Report

PRESIDENT’S REPORT

As I write this report I can’t help but wonder where the year 2008 went to. This being the January 2009 issue of the Trapper & Predator Caller I can only hope that this year is not as complicated as 2008. If you recall we opened up last year with fair to moderate fur prices.

As the season escalated and spring came the price of most raw fur went through the ceiling. Trappers went into the convention season spending big money on supplies hoping for the lucrative season ahead. Fast forward to the fall of this year and the global economy is dictating that our fur is worth way less than predicted. I have report of some country buyer’s not even buying fur this year. Other country buyers are very cautious and grading very hard. I have yet to talk to a country buyer who even has standing orders for fur. I will be watching the results of the upcoming auctions very close.

Will the new President of the United States have any positive results on the economy? I would hope so, but I have serious doubts. Remember this is a global economy problem, not just a United Stares problem. As trappers, we have gone through tough times before and persevered and we can do it again. Now would be a good time to take a youngster of beginner out and introduce them to our great sport.

Another complicated issue that 2008 brought was the settlement of the lawsuit brought upon the Commissioner of the DNR and the sport of trapping. Your MTA met this lawsuit brought on by the Animal Protection Institute head on just like we met the similar lawsuit that was brought upon us IN 2006. We came out winners in both lawsuits and sent the animal rights camp packing little negative results on us. The dust no sooner settles and we find out that in the lynx range we have to modify out 220 boxes.  Yes, it was a very confusing year. But as trappers we came out without any major damage. Please continue to support your MTA and if at all possible join out parent organizations such as the NTA and FTA.

Speaking of supporting our MTA, it is imperative that I talk to you folks about your membership. I fully understand that a good number of you members are fed up with the complicated issues of the Trapper & Predator Caller magazine. Several of you have informed me and MTA Membership Coordinator Kathy Peterson that you are tired of the problems and are not renewing your membership.

Before you make any final decisions, please take into account that Kathy, I and the MTA board of directors are aware of these issues and are working to fix what is broke. Kathy has literally made this issue a full-time job working with Krause publications to find a solution. I can’t promise you that everything will be fixed, but I am promising you that these issues are being worked on. We are keeping any and all options pertaining to your monthly periodical even if it means finding another magazine.

In the meantime I only ask that you not stop becoming a member of the MTA. If anything, stay a member of the MTA with no Trapper & Predator Caller magazine for just $10 a year. We need the strength that membership provides when it comes to lobbying and fighting at the State Capital. Sooner or later the issues with the magazine are going to be resolved or we will move on to another magazine. That is my promise to you.

Shortly after you receive this magazine, the 2009 Legislative session will be starting. This is the time of the year that negative issues can be brought up not only at the Capitol but at city and village levels as well. Should any of you members hear of any negative language or threats brought toward trapping contact your district director immediately so we can stay on top of things.

We officers work hard to keep up on what is happening in the political world and we are affiliated with groups like the Minnesota Outdoor Heritage Alliance and other groups that literally live at the capital but things do have a tendency to slip by us.

Until next issue, enjoy the new year and above all, be safe.

— Gary Meis

DIRECTOR OF TRAPPER EDUCATION REPORT

Greetings to all,

I hope that everyone has had a safe and successful trapping season thus far. The fisher/marten/bobcat season starts tomorrow so I wish you all great and successful season.

I would like to thank all the certified instructors who have put on classes in 2008. Your commitment and dedication to our sport is greatly appreciated. If you are interested in becoming a certified instructor, we will be holding an instructor class on Jan. 2, 2009, in Isle, Mn. This is the day before the winter meeting. The class will start at noon and run approximately two hours. Please pre-register by Dec. 20, so we can ensure the proper amount of materials are available for you.

I would also like to remind you about our Youth Photo Contest . All youth, 17 and under, are eligible to enter this contest. The youth must be involved in some form of trapping (setting traps, checking traps, skinning, etc.).You may enter up to three photos per youth. All photos are brought to the summer convention, where the general membership votes on the photos. So…remember to take some pictures this trapping season, and enter your youth in this contest.

I wish you all a safe and happy holiday season and hope to see you all at the winter meeting in Isle on Jan. 3, 2009.

— Deb Offerdahl

DISTRICT 5 REPORT

Hello everyone,

We will be having our winter meeting on Feb. 7, 2009, at Johnson’s Fur in Willmar again this year. Scott will be having his Customer Appreciation Day and has once again invited us to have our district meeting there. We will be having our District 5 meeting at about 10 a.m. Scott and crew always put on a nice family meal for everyone. He will also be buying fur.

If you want to donate fur to the tanned fur project and can’t get it to Tim Caven or Mark Melby, let me know and we can arrange to pick it up. We are having the contest again this year. The district that collects the most fur gets credit for the most expensive gun on our summer raffle for 2010. They use a point system for this and each fur is worth so many points as determined by Tim Caven. Last year District 5 came a very close second to District 8.

Take care.

— Pete

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