New Hampshire Trappers Association March 2010 Report

President — Larry Torr, 75 Polly Ann MHC Gerrish Rd Dover, NH 03820 603-742-7554

Vice President — Dwight Pennell, P.O. Box 136, Center Tuftonboro, NH 03816; phone: 603-539-7954

Membership Director — Roger Burnham, 159 North Shore Rd., Hebron, NH 03241; phone: 603-744-3561; e-mail: nhtrapper@metrocast.net

Clerk – Bill Anderson, Box 114, South Springfield, NH 03284; phone: 603-763-5548

Treasurer — Mike Kazak, 72 Riverview Dr., Charlestown, NH 03603; phone: 603-826-3959

Education Director — Mike Morrison, 737 Old Homestead Highway, Swanzey, NH 03446; phone: 603-352-8468

NTA Director — Steve Bennett 16 Spruce Cove Rd Northwood, NH 03234 (603) 496-4353

Legislative Director — Scott Borthwick, P.O. Box 81, Canaan, NH 03741; phone: 603-523-9284

NH Fish & Game Liasion — Fred Shepard, P.O. Box 23, Deerfield, NH 03037; phone: 603-463-7473

ASSOCIATION NEWS

The Annual NHTA Fur Auction was held this year at the Springfield Fire Station on Jan. 16, 2010. The Association was happy to have three buyers on hand to offer sellers a competitive bid. Buyers bid on a total of twelve lots. The totals are as follows (Listed by Species, Number Sold and Average Price):

Muskrat — 62, $4.93

Raccoon — 15, $6.67

Mink — 2, $6

Red Fox — 12, $18.08

Grey Fox: 11, $11.36

Beaver — 64, $15.98

Coyote — 3, $14

Otter — 5, $37.60

Fisher — 2, $35.38

The Association would like to thank the town of Springfield for the use of the facility and to NHTA Clerk Bill Anderson for working out the details with the Fire Station.

The NHTA officers and directorsmet Jan. 16 for a monthly meeting following the fur sale at the Fire Station. This meeting was held in place of the monthly meeting scheduled for Jan. 5.

Fish and Game Liaison Fred Shepard alerted members of the association of NH House Bill 1514 that was to be heard by the NH Fish and Game House Committee Jan. 20, 2010, in Concord. This bill was introduced by a NH state representative who is also a member of a coalition of animal rights activists dedicated to ending fur trapping in NH. This bill would outlaw the possession and transportation of raw furs. Fred was assured that NH Fish and Game Law Enforcement and biologist along with most of the Fish and Game Commissioners were gong to attend this session and speak in favor of killing this bill along with other sporting groups and taxidermists.

Jan. 20, the committee room was crowded with NHTA members who took time to attend this hearing. Surprisingly, and a sign of their growing effort, an impressive number of individuals rounded up by the “coalition” in favor of this bill were in attendance. Most of their testimonies and statements were focused on the so-called cruelty of trapping punctuated with mistruths and exaggerations. The committee chair reminded the group on several occasions that the bill was about possession of raw furs and not trapping or traps. The group had little else to argue.

NHTA president Larry Torr spoke on behalf of the association in opposition of the bill. NHTA vice president Dwight Pennell spoke on behalf of his private fur buying/shipping business in opposition to the bill. This bill is likely to be killed in committee but the representative that sponsored the bill has vowed to take it to the full house in some round-about maneuver to get a vote. The bill is unlikely to pass as most representatives will support the committee’s recommendations, but it would not hurt to contact your area representative to voice your opposition to HB 1514.

In other association news, the Village Gun Shop notified NHTA that all the guns won in the fall raffle have been picked up. They were pleased with the bump in sales associated with the visit to the shop by the winners.

The Belknap County Sportsman’s Club requested a donation for their upcoming club fundraiser. NHTA agreed to donate a coyote pelt for their auction. Vice president Dwight Pennell donated an additional coyote pelt from his personal collection. Director Dan Dockham is looking into arrangements with the club about the use of their facility for our April 25 spring meet. Details will follow.

Director Bonnie Pennell has asked directors for suggestions for a site for this summer’s weekend camp outing. Bonnie organized a weekend event last July in Lincoln at Lost River.

NHTA Directors agreed to set up a booth at this year’s NH Farm and Forest Exposition at the Center of NH in Manchester. The forest show will be held Feb. 5 and 6, 2010. Director Gene Dabrowski took the lead on organizing the volunteers and handling the table set up and take down. Thank you, Gene. This is a busy event and should offer many opportunities to make new friends.

The association is appreciative of all those that have donated raw skins for the Miss NH fur jacket project, fur kits and fundraising sales. A list of donators will be published in the newsletter at winter’s end. Thank you.

Best to all.

— Paul DeBow

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