The article I wrote yesterday about the discovery of a dumping ground for deer carcasses and parts show a situation that is bad on many levels.
It's bad for the environment to have that much rotting meat in one area, though predators will eventually consume it. It's unsightly, and gives non-hunters another reason to badmouth a past-time that serves a lot of good purposes.
The issue was brought to light by sportsman Josh Warner of Argyle, who posted a video that prompted outrage on Facebook. The sight of that young buck, shot and dumped intact on the side of the road, was heartbreaking.
Well, the situation got even uglier later Thursday, as Warner posted video of more bags of deer parts at the boat launch off Nolan Road in Moreau that he was made aware of.
The DEC is investigating.
My guess would be that at least part of this is the result of an unscrupulous deer processor in that area of northern Saratoga County who is illegally dumping. Those heavy plastic bags seem to be the kind used by professionals. Deer parts can be legally thrown in the trash, but it's cheaper to throw them in the woods than pay for trash pickup.
As my article stated, this is not an unprecedented issue.
I find deer carcasses all over the place in rural areas every fall and spring. I just saw one rotting right off the road near East Bay Road in Whitehall last weekend when hiking and scouting some fishing spots. I have seen piles of two or three almost annually near the boat launch on Big Boom Road in Queensbury.
Lots of poachers shoot does or illegally night shoot deer, strip the tenderloins and other choice cuts, and dump the rest, either out of laziness or a desire to hide the illegal kill or not to pay for butchering.
The saddest part is the waste of good meat.
There are needy people who can use that venison, and the Venison Donation Coalition is a means to get it to them. The only local processor who participates is John Rozell in Whitehall, at 518-499-0423. But that meat can get to those who will use it, through the coalition.
(On another note, Rozell deserves some serious kudos for giving his time to do this for the decade or so he has.)
-- Don Lehman