Date: 2/10/17 1:36 pm
From: Nate Dias (via carolinabirds Mailing List) <carolinabirds...>
Subject: Re: Sustainable Murrell’s Inlet petition
I was not able to respond to this message back at the time, as I was on a
multi-week safari in Kenya that I organized. I will respond now, however.

I grew up duck hunting and normally I am very supportive of (responsible +
legal) duck hunting.

But the duck hunting situation in Murrells Inlet is completely out of
hand. Young fools who have no idea what they are doing (got trained by
watching "Duck Dynasty") are acting illegally and also violating all sorts
of gun safety principals. Pretty much on a daily basis during duck season.

If they had a clue, they would not be wasting their time hunting Murrells
Inlet - nothing but undesirable duck species to be had there.

In the past 4-5 years, Murrells Inlet has been flooded by these clueless
youngsters. Instead of using a "sneak box" and putting out a rig of decoys
to hunt sea ducks, they get in John boats and ride around the jetties and
just off the beach with loaded guns. This practice is ILLEGAL and is known
as "jump shooting.". It is unsafe and unlawful for duck hunters to be in
a motorized boat with the engine running and a loaded gun. Guns are
supposed to be in their case, stowed away and unloaded if your boat is
under power.

The young idiots also routinely shoot at nongame species like Grebes and
Cormorants - which is illegal. They also shoot inedible ducks like
Mergansers. All to have photos to post on social media and to try and look
cool in the halls of their high school or college.

This photo was taken in late January 2013, when I first began noticing the
problem getting out of hand. Any duck hunter will tell you these
youngsters have NO CLUE what they are doing. Every serious duck hunter or
manager I have showed such photos has burst out laughing. Note the shotgun
being held by one of the goofballs as they motor around.

I have called SC DNR multiple times about the rampant jump-shooting and
other illegalities regularly taking place at Murrells Inlet. It does not
seem to be a big priority to DNR...

And the young fools are not careful about where they shoot and what is
behind the target they are shooting at. I have seen them swing past
fishermen on the jetty - thankfully without pulling the trigger.

So I hope duck hunting is banned in and around Murrells Inlet - soon. Or
else it's only a matter of time before a fisherman or birder is shot on the
Murrells Inlet jetty. And a total ban seems to be the only way to get
control of the rampant illegal behavior, given the lack of enforcement

Nathan Dias - Charleston, SC

On Tue, Jan 17, 2017 at 9:43 AM, Stephen Thomas <rubberhead...>
<javascript:;>> wrote:
> The petition to turn Murrell’s Inlet into a bird sanctuary and the whole
> “Sustainable Murrell’s Inlet” movement is very short sighted. Sportsmen
> well-organized and well-funded and good to have on our side in a political
> fight. Exclude them now and they won’t be there for us if the state
> it needs to sell the front beach of HBSP to the highest bidder to pay off
> debt, defer taxes or build roads. Sportsmen and sportswomen in our
> legislature way outnumber birders so if they lose interest in Murrell’s
> Inlet because they were willfully excluded from enjoying it, then the
> of MI becomes more tenuous not more sustainable.
> I’ve been birding Murrell’s Inlet for almost 30 years (my first entry in
> bird journal was January 1988) and hunters and birders have been sharing
> place since long before that yet MI remains the premier birding hotspot
> SC with general public access. Evidently the current Shared Murrell’s
> approach has proven itself very sustainable.
> As an alternative to excluding some very like-minded people, I suggest the
> following:
> Stephen Thomas
> Fort Mill, SC

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