The annual meeting of Zone ‘A’ of the Ontario Federation of Anglers and Hunters, hosted by the Ear Falls Hunters and Anglers club, attracted
delegates from Fort Frances, Atikokan, Ignace, Dryden, Balmertown, Ear Falls, and two clubs from Kenora.
The OFAH update noted that work is being done on:
•how hunters are portrayed;
•whether archers should wear hunter orange while hunting areas with concurrent black bear rifle seasons;
•is hunter orange necessary when hunting from an elevated stand, and;
•a hunting Heritage Day in Ontario is in the future for young apprentice hunters.
In other news, a letter from the Ministry of Natural Resources indicated an audit of the Special Purpose Account (S.P.A.) will be presented to Cabinet in a timely manner by minister John Snobelen.
Snobelen likely will face repeated questions regarding this issue when he addresses the annual OFAH convention in Thunder Bay on Friday.
Because of the increase in fees last year, this has been a contentious item.
Meanwhile, a motion was put forward to inform the MNR of the zone’s displeasure with the intent to increase land use permits to snowmobile clubs.
At the very least, it was felt all permits should allow traditional use to activities such as angling, hunting, cottaging, and such.
Also at the zone meeting, Murray English, of the Northwestern Ontario Elk Restoration Coalition, gave an update on the trip to Elk Island National Park to pick up the 48 animals later released at Cameron Lake, and the dispersement of them after their release.
This is a program all area clubs have supported.
Much funding is still needed for monitoring and future transfers. As such, each club was given bumper stickers reading “I adopted an elk” to sell.
Members and residents are encouraged to support this drive, and also to report any sighting of elk to the MNR.
OFAH travelling teacher Linda Sheplawy-Woodcock then gave an interesting and informative explanation of the presentation she gives to school children.
This was extra interesting to Henry Miller, who does much the same in this area.
The last order of business was the election of officers for the coming year. They are president Jan “Dutchie” Loman (Ear Falls), first vice-president Bruce Hamilton (Fort Frances), second vice-president Larry Nault (Atikokan), secretary/treasurer Hal Wilmering (Dryden), and alternate director Darrel Sidney (Dryden).
The next Zone ‘A’ meeting will be held Aug. 19 in Fort Frances.