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Re: “Near and (Mule) Deer

So how did it go last night? Would anyone care to report?

Posted by TrailLover on 08/13/2015 at 1:57 PM

Re: “Near and (Mule) Deer

Hintza - If something was taken out of context, it was the fault of the article's author, not me. Granted, a brief article can't possibly address the many subtleties that would have to inform any ultimate decisions about balancing human activity and habitat conservation. But it's some of the experts quoted in the article who don't seem to be waiting "until [the] discussion occurs" before making assertions of fact and offering their own predetermined opinions. If the article misrepresented their views in some way, they can offer clarification here or perhaps at the August 12 meeting. I hope many members of the community - scientists, policy makers and trails users - will attend.

Posted by TrailLover on 08/09/2015 at 8:21 AM

Re: “Near and (Mule) Deer

Giving a damn about mule deer shouldn't imply damning recreation. OSU-Cascades professors and retired ODFW employees will need to do a much better job defending their deep ecology perspective that pits humans - particularly those who recreate in nature - against the environment. When we hear scientists filling knowledge gaps with conjecture, we need to ask more questions.

If 44% of mule deer mortality has "unknown" causes, why are we pointing the finger at recreation? Amy Stuart of Central Oregon LandWatch labels hiking as "low-impact" while asserting that mountain biking has a relatively high impact because cyclists may travel further in the backcountry. That strikes me as an observation that may have nothing to do with mule deer. Maybe cyclists have a shorter residence time in an individual deer's habitat? Are cyclists, because they can cover more ground, less likely to camp overnight? Are cyclists more likely to stay on designated trails and less likely than other users to travel cross country? Are cyclists more likely to ride to the trailhead rather than drive, thereby reducing the need for road construction and the relatively massive environmental impact that roads bring?

Today I walked through a housing development that was formerly mule deer habitat. Then I mountain biked past a resort where nothing but golf carts and pleated pants roam the hillsides. When I finally got to the trailhead, I didn't really feel like the bad guy.

Community member Kreg Lindberg is right: A much more thorough discussion is necessary and perhaps the public event on August 12th can help move that forward.

Posted by TrailLover on 08/08/2015 at 8:34 PM

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