I'm one of the hunters who think the deer population around Speculator has declined since the doe season in the 1960s.
I think there are fewer deer than ever. If we have a winter with a lot of snow, like we used to have, the deer could be almost wiped out in some areas.
I would like to see a better head count of the deer. Beaver and fisher trappers have to have every pelt tagged by the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation. Maybe if DEC officers tagged every deer shot in Hamilton County we would have an accurate count and exact location where each was shot.
This would be a real pain in the neck, but how else could we get an accurate count?
Also, I think there should be a $300 bounty on coyotes for a few years. With too many coyotes and too many car collisions, the deer herd cannot expand in some areas.
Deer will come close to a house or people to try to escape coyotes. With the deer herd so low and so close to town, more coyotes are coming closer to get dogs and cats.
I have another problem too, or maybe we all do since the Adirondack forest preserve is supposed to be open to everyone. I am 72 years old and worked hard all my life for the day I could retire and hunt, fish and camp to my heart's content.
Now the local forest ranger tells me that because I was issued a camping permit for hunting season, I can't go camping any more this year. I can't be issued another permit until next year.
If I stay camping in my tent where it is, I can be fined up to $250. The state of New York is making me into a criminal because I want to camp on public land. This is wrong.
I don't know of anyone winter camping between Indian Lake and Piseco. I challenge our local forest rangers to show me how it would hurt the environment if I camp in the winter.
I would think the forest rangers would promote camping instead of restricting it so much. I realize that years ago there were a lot of squatters on state land and that had to be stopped, but camping in a tent or other shelter is different and should be allowed.
Can anyone help me with this so I can continue camping?
LOUIS N. PAGE Sr.