December 15, 2018
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Word from the Woods: Northern Maine trappers receive bad news

Aislinn Sarnacki | BDN
Aislinn Sarnacki | BDN
A Canada lynx sits in an enclosure in October 2013 at the Maine Wildlife Park in Gray.

Many of the state’s trappers are scrambling to deal with new trapping regulations that went into effect on Tuesday, as the Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife instituted emergency rules in response to the death of two Canada lynx, which are federally protected. Most trapping for pine martens, fishers and several other animals has been halted for 90 days, at which point state and federal agencies will regroup to formulate a more permanent solution.

— John Holyoke

State shuts down most northern Maine trapping after 2 lynx killed

The Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife has ordered the halt of all above-ground trapping in the northern half of the state in response to the death of two Canada lynx that were killed in traps this fall.

According to a DIF&W press release, effective immediately, lethal traps that are commonly used to catch fisher and pine marten will not be allowed above ground or snow level in 14 of the state’s 29 Wildlife Management Districts.

Those districts include all of Aroostook County, as well as the northern sections of Somerset, Piscataquis, Penobscot, Hancock and Washington counties.

Beaver steals fisherman’s bait trap

Since I’m the BDN’s head felonious beaver writer (or something like that), I wasn’t entirely surprised late last week when another reader emailed with news of more beaver-based crime in the Maine woods.

Yes, they’re back at it. (Can’t trust a beaver, I always say).

“About three weeks ago, a friend of mine and I went to a pond to collect the bait from one of my bait traps,” Duane Aldrich of Lee wrote. “The bait trap was gone. We went to the local game warden and reported the theft.”

Blog log

Act Out with Aislinn: 1-minute hike: Trenton Community Trail

Trenton Community Trail is a woodland footpath that officially opened to the public in the spring of 2013, with an inaugural celebration in June. It’s maintained by the Trenton Parks and Recreation Committee, with assistance from Friends of Acadia, a nonprofit group known best for its conservation and trail work at the nearby Acadia National Park.

Out There: Deer Season Diary: Another year, another deer … for someone

Deer Season Diary, Post 6: Bored beyond belief. Even Red the Squirrel refuses to visit. Apparently he and the deer are off partying someplace else. Broke down and took my Kindle in to the blind. Read most of a book. Saw nothing wild. Nothing. But I guess I made some sort of progress. On the book, I mean.

On the horizon

We’ve certainly had a bunch of cool deer stories to share this year, but the tale we’ll tell you later this week is a real keeper. Back in 1910, Hill Gould of Grand Lake Stream shot a deer that had the most spectacular non-typical rack of all time … and the record still stands here in Maine. Initial reports said the antlers sported 50 points, but later official scoring called the deer a 31-pointer. As it turns out, Hill Gould’s grandson, Louis Cataldo, is a registered Maine guide who also works out of Grand Lake Stream. Cataldo shared the story told by his grandfather, and admitted that he often stops by that magic spot in the woods, hoping that history will repeat itself.

Also, be on the lookout for the winter moth, a foreign pest that recently made its way to Maine and is especially active during the holiday season. BDN outdoor reporter Aislinn Sarnacki will give you the rundown on how you can help the Maine Forest Service get a handle on these hardy insects, which have the potential to kill certain trees and bushes that are important to the state’s economy.

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