Stop Bird Hunting at the Lake Earl Wildlife Refuge

To be delivered to Jeffrey Stoddard, Program Manager, Charlton H. Bonham, Director, Governor Gavin Newsom, The California State House, The California State Senate.

We the undersigned request that California Department of Fish and Wildlife end hunting on the Lake Earl Wildlife Refuge. Hunting defeats the purpose of a tax payer supported wildlife refuge.

As grounds for this petition we request the state of California to take notice of the following:

1) Prior to 1971, Lakeview Drive, formerly known as Lake Earl Road, did not dead end at the lake, resulting in a walk of more than 1,000 feet. The exercise of the county's easement to the lake has significantly increased hunters, fisherman, and crime.

2) Little if anything that is killed along the lake is ever taken home and a number of pictures proving this are in the possession of the originator of this petition.

3) Residents along Lakeview Drive have had to contend with an ongoing traffic problem from hunters and fisherman who use the lake, as well as those who visit the lake after dark to do their drug deal.

4) The whole concept of hunting on a taxpayer supported Wildlife Refuge defeats the purpose of having the wildlife refuge and the California Dept of Fish and Widlife has a conflict of interest because they receive money from hunting licenses which support staffing and officers to visit the lake.

5. Some of the dead animals in the piles surrounding the lake include endangered species which is not surprising since a hunter can't tell the difference as to what he is killing when the bird is almost completely out of visual range.

6. With respect to over fishing, because of salt water contamination caused by incompetent breaching, the only fish that is capable of living in this lagoon (formerly a lake) is sturgeon who's numbers have dwindled so much due to overfishing that the fish's presence in the lake is almost extinct. Fisherman will commonly kill every sturgeon they can get their hands on, gut the fish for the eggs, and the leave the rotting fish carcasses on the side of the road at the entrance to Lake Earl.

7. A number of hobby farmers around the lake have reported hunters killing their geese in front of their homes.

For these reasons we the undersigned request that hunting and fishing be permanently banned on Lake Earl.

BACKGROUND

Hunting on the Lake Earl Wildlife Preserve, particularly off of Lakeview Drive destroys the natural serenity and peace of this community. Visitors around the lake wake up to the sound of gunfire which is hardly inviting to people who come here to vacation and enjoy the redwoods and natural beauty.

Additionally since the county exercised its easement on Lakeview Drive, formerly Lake Earl Road, the number of hunters, fisherman, and people using the Lake Access area has increased exponentially to where there is nothing less than a big crowd. The resulting humanity has left trash in the streets, increased crime, and a steady parade of traffic all night long that is disturbing the residents on this street.

Other factors are that most of the dead animals the hunters kill are left on the street and rarely taken home, and I have pictures to prove it. This includes dead deer, big piles of dead birds. Yet the California Department of Fish and Wildlife is defiant and will not change their position.

And still another factor is that a number of endangered species have shown up in the dead piles of animals and it isn't possible for the hunter to determine what species a bird is when it is more than 100 feet higher than where he is standing.

And most importantly it is completely ludicrous for the California tax payers to pay for a Wildlife Preserve when the state is making money from hunting licenses on this property. It defeats the whole purpose. As the record stands, the state would be better off giving the property back to the Tolowa Indian Tribe who's land was taken away from them by force during a big massacre.

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