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E-M:/ Senator John Dingell's previous pro-dove hunting statement is as follows:



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Enviro-Mich message from HAMILTREEF@aol.com
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Senator John Dingell's previous pro-dove hunting statement from the last 
session is as follows: 

"If one listens to the previous speaker, you'd believe armies of hunters are 
going to be invading suburban backgrounds and blasting doves off backyard 
birdfeeders, and this is not true at all. It's a catchy word-picture that the 
press likes to pick up on and the Audubon Society, which really doesn't like 
hunting, and the Humane Society, which
really doesn't like hunting and likes to portray dove hunters as doing such.  
It's just plain false because there's nothing in this bill that would take 
away cities' rights to prohibit hunting in suburban or urban areas, and also, 
the restrictions on hunting close to homes and other buildings. 

It's interesting to note that the mourning dove is classified by the Audubon 
Society's books as a game bird. It's also interesting to note that John 
Audubon shot as many as a hundred in a day, and ate them with relish. He even wrote 
notes about good recipes for them. 

Now there's lots of people who like to talk about how this is going to 
endanger dove populations in the United States. Hogwash! There are 45 million doves 
in Michigan at least. There are at least 450 million of the little buggers in 
the United States. Ninety-eight percent of the doves that exist in Michigan 
during most of the year migrate South.  Every state south of us has a dove 
season. So doves here in Michigan,
raised here, are going to be shot at, if not in Michigan, they will be shot 
at down South. 

Mourning doves fly nothing like other species. It's not hard to get members 
of the Audubon Society to admit this. Other species may look like them, but 
they don't fly anything like them. Hunters, when they identify a species, they 
don't identify it by the look of the bird.  They identify it by the flight 
characteristics, which are quite
distinctive.

Average life span is about nine months. That's mighty short. This is an 
animal that breeds in incredible numbers. They'll raise as many as five sets of 
young in a year. The only reason that they overpopulate like mad is because of 
their mortality through predation as well as just dying on their own is so high. 
In other states that have a dove season, the number taken by hunters is not 
capable of being established or noticed by scientific studies of the 
population. 

There are more mourning doves taken in the United States than any other 
species of bird--any other. This isn't just a game bird because of classification; 
it's a game bird because it is hunted so much. And does it make a difference 
in the population? The answer is "no." If anything, the population in states 
that have instituted a mourning dove season has actually gone up, not down. 

I note discussion regarding the bird of peace. This is a reference to the 
Mediterranean turtle dove. If you want to pull out your Bibles, many of us have 
them on the Senate floor, you will find abundant references to the relish with 
which the ancient Israelites killed them and ate them, and they made animal 
sacrifices of them, and they did many other things with them. Mention was made 
of the supposed, actual small size of dove breasts. It's actually the same size 
of a quail, about two and half ounces. I don't know how much meat all of you 
eat at a sitting, but only
a couple increments of two and half ounces makes a meal for me, and it does 
for most hunters. This is considerably larger than robins. 

I would also like to talk about the hearings we held and where doves were 
hunted. It was interesting to hear that the hunting of doves happens in strictly 
very rural areas, usually in stubble fields that have been scalped, a small 
blind, usually of the remaining whatever it was that was harvested is left, and 
the hunters will crouch in that.  It's a relatively easy matter to pick up the 
doves that are shot because they are easy to pick out. 

With that I recommend the bill as passed by the House to my colleagues, and 
hope for your affirmative votes."
    
    



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