President’s Report 


The devastation hit the news last November of a young woman and her child who were killed by a grizzly while at their cabin in the Yukon.  A sobering reminder to all of how fragile life is and how we need to hold our loved ones close each and every night.

With furs being donated for Gjermund and a GoFundMe account that has received over $33,000, the support from across North America is outstanding.  While money will not heal the pain he is suffering, it is a small reminder of the support surrounding him.  Thank you to everyone far and wide who have contributed to this cause.  May Valerie and Adele forever rest in peace.

Convention is right around the corner and as mentioned, we’ve made some changes.

The annual general meeting has been moved from the Friday afternoon, now to Sunday morning.  This will create two full days of events and allow any person to now attend the meeting who were unable to previously.  It is important to note that this organization is guided by the discussions and decisions from our AGM.  Please make the time to attend and have your voice heard.

2018 convention was reported as one of our largest attended events.  With over 300 people through the doors on Saturday the Association still ended up in the red.  You’ll see that the admission rates have changed in an effort to offset costs.  We are committed to ensuring our weekend is family fun and remains cost effective for everyone.

Fundraising efforts are well underway and we welcome all donations – big or small.  Any contribution from your community or business is greatly appreciated.  If you have questions, please feel free to contact any of the directors at any time.

Our presentations are stacked with harvesters and handlers from across Canada.  These individuals will astound you with their knowledge and tips throughout each day.  If you were thinking about coming for only one day, take a look at the schedule and consider planning for two.  Bring a friend and share a room – I look forward to seeing you there!

Throughout both 2017 and 2018, a majority of the trapping infractions were snare related offences. This identifies a major area that we can focus on and use data to monitor the success of our operations.  It is unrealistic to think that we will completely eliminate all of the snaring related infractions; there will always be a bad apple in the bunch.

While the Association explores ways to increase education and awareness, we can focus on relationship building throughout our trapping practice.

We have an obligation in Southern Saskatchewan to notify the occupants of any residence or dwelling within 1.6km of a power snare set location.  While we are only required to notify the occupants, it is of due diligence to communicate and establish a fair timeline of operation.  Many residents are concerned about the risk to their family pet or a working guardian dog, and would prefer to not take the risk of snares nearby.  Remember that this permit is a responsibility, not a right.  Try to work with these folks and come to a practice that you both will agree to.  If it seems like no progress is being made, perhaps it’s best to discuss the issue with the land owner or move your area somewhere else.

 

Difficult decisions like these prevent the potential impact of more conditions being applied to the permits in future years.  The general public has the ability to influence policy makers when faced with complaints.  Let’s take a proactive approach to maintaining relationships with land owners and continue to hold our word when it’s signed with a handshake.

With region meetings completed I would like to take a moment to welcome Aaron Nicholson as the incoming director for Region 12 and Kelvin Herron as the incoming director for Region 14.  Both are active trappers from Southern Saskatchewan and will be at convention this spring.  Make sure to congratulate them when you introduce yourself.

 

While we finalize plans for convention, we are gradually growing the visibility of our new Facebook page and utilizing our website to a higher capacity.   If you have any ideas or suggestions, we’d love to hear from you.

 

Rendezvous planning has started. Keep an eye open for date and location announcements during convention.

 

Despite the drastic temperature changes throughout the province, I hope you’ve had a productive season so far.  It won’t be long before we change out our gear for water sets and finish up the last bits of fur in our shed.  Take the opportunity to bring a youngster or a friend along.  It may be the reason someone else starts into this amazing adventure.

Safe travels