View Full Version : Is Hunting Over Bait..... Fair Chase??

04-07-2011, 08:12 PM
I say no..... what do you feel?

04-07-2011, 08:32 PM
Is hunting over a watering hole any different? Fair chase means simply the animal is completely wild, unfenced, and has a just and fair opportunity to escape and survive. If your in reference to bears, they have noses that few animals can rival, so to hunt over bait is as fair as it can get.
The real question to ask is, do you like to sit on your duff and hunt or do you like to stalk to hunt. Some like to sit, weather its tree stands, ground blinds, or just still hunting.
Some like to stalk, moving in like a predator to hunt. Its all in a personal preference.

04-07-2011, 08:58 PM
I hear ya..... I will revise my statement...... I think hunting over anything one brings into the field is not fair chase..... I will hunt a non-man-made watering hole.

04-07-2011, 09:43 PM
I would have to say that this is definitely a personal choice also, not as much on the terms of "fair chase". I believe baiting for bears is entirely fine. Many areas are heavily wooded where bear baiting occurs, and would be very hard to hunt by spot and stalk, because down here in middle-idaho, there aren't many clearcuts or areas that you will expect bears to appear. Baiting helps to keep bear numbers at a good level and also give a good chance at getting close. It is also fun to see what appears at a bait if you have a camera set up. I personally would rather chase a pack of hounds than sit on a bait, but that is because i enjoy hound hunting and love the excitement of it. This is just my personal opinion, but i do believe it is fair-chase. If someone is willing to hike up in the hills with pounds and pounds of baiting supplies, they are putting in a lot of time and effort into a hunt. Its just like preseason scouting, except with spring bear, the preseason is when they are dead asleep, so other than feeding sign from previous years, its hard to predict what will be happening. Just my thoughts.

04-07-2011, 11:07 PM
I guess it depends. sett'n one of those feeders up that rattles when it spits feed out and the deer come running in...That is not fair anything..Setting a bear bait up I suppose id fair as its dang near the only way to get one...I'm more of a spot and stalk guy.

04-07-2011, 11:27 PM
I say yes, wolftalonID nailed it. Unless you're baiting in a high fence area.. then no, not really fair chase :)

04-08-2011, 12:17 AM
Boone and Crockett - http://www.boone-crockett.org/huntingEthics/ethics_fairchase.asp?area=huntingEthics
FAIR CHASE, as defined by the Boone and Crockett Club, is the ethical, sportsmanlike, and lawful pursuit and taking of any free-ranging wild, native North American big game animal in a manner that does not give the hunter an improper advantage over such animals.
Fundamental to all hunting is the concept of conservation of natural resources. Hunting in today's world involves the regulated harvest of individual animals in a manner that conserves, protects, and perpetuates the hunted population. The hunter engages in a one-to-one relationship with the quarry and his or her hunting should be guided by a hierarchy of ethics related to hunting, which includes the following tenets:
1. Obey all applicable laws and regulations.
2. Respect the customs of the locale where the hunting occurs.
3. Exercise a personal code of behavior that reflects favorably on your abilities and sensibilities as a hunter.
4. Attain and maintain the skills necessary to make the kill as certain and quick as possible.
5. Behave in a way that will bring no dishonor to either the hunter, the hunted, or the environment.
6. Recognize that these tenets are intended to enhance the hunter's experience of the relationship between predator and prey, which is one of the most fundamental relationships of humans and their environment.

Should we use food plots? Scents? Calls? Decoys? HD camo? Spotting scopes? Long-range rifles? Tree-stands? Is using bait in a trap line ethical? Do any of these tactics give the hunter "an improper advantage over such animals"? How about if the hunter is physically challenged? Should ethics change depending on the circumstances?

I know writing these questions will most certainly make me look like a jerk to some people. Don't take it that way. I'm only pointing out that it's hard to draw a line with this. It can make for interesting or heated debates though.

I say keep it legal and respectful. Beyond that, use whatever means you need to to keep it ethical in your eyes and don't look down on how others hunt. I do not bait (whitetails). I have a friend who hunts in lower Ontario. They have to bait or they'll never see deer. I've strongly considered baiting for disabled guests while I had a non-profit hunting and fishing business.

Doe Nob
04-08-2011, 07:11 AM
By the book yes it is. For myself it depends on the area. I think pretty much anything anywhere with archery tackle can be sporting, one of the reasons I bow hunt almost exclusively now, that and the difficulty of getting a good rifle tag anywhere.

I want to hunt the way I think is right and I don't want anyone telling me that I'm being an unethical jerk, and I afford them the same courtesy as long as they are within the law. It may not be for me, but if its legal, I don't have a problem with it.

04-08-2011, 11:23 AM
Hunting over bait or with hounds are both illegal in Oregon so it is a moot point for me! Personally, having never done either one, it seems to me that hounds are in a different category than bait. Trying to keep up with the dogs on the trail of a cat or bear wouldn't be for the faint of heart. Sitting on bait to me is no different than hunting out of a tree stand for a deer to walk by. Neither which appeal to me very much. One I don't have the aptitude to sit still for hours at a time and two it just doesn't seem very exciting!
Who knows!, maybe if I had tried it, I would think different.

04-08-2011, 12:27 PM
As long as it is legal I have no problem with it. The problem with such a question is where do you draw the line? To some, using calls, decoys, dogs, GPS, radios, trucks, atvs, camo, compound bows, inline muzzleloaders, crossbows, long range rifles, etc. (you could on and on) may be unethical and not fair chase. To me, one's personal ethics are just that - personal. Therefore, if a hunter is comfortable hunting over bait and it is legal in that state, that should be the end of the discussion for anyone else.

04-08-2011, 12:56 PM
I agree. This shouldn't even be an issue. I'm surprised to see it on this forum, as it is mainly a talking point for anti-hunting groups.

04-08-2011, 05:45 PM
I agree. This shouldn't even be an issue. I'm surprised to see it on this forum, as it is mainly a talking point for anti-hunting groups.


With all the anti stuff going on there is no reason for us to argue amongst ourselves about something this trivial.

04-08-2011, 06:07 PM
To me ethics on this subject is as long as the odds are in the animals favor, which i have seen bears wind hunters or baits not set up clean and they won't come in because of human scent, one comment that was brought up and i just have to throw in is food plots. In my opinion it is not unethical i guess, but i don't think those animals should be allowed in the record books, humans are now making the trophy not mother nature

04-08-2011, 06:27 PM
I agree Elkoholic and T43, hunters need to stick together not argue about whether what other hunters are doing is ethical or not. Same goes with all the issues mentioned by MI-address-ROCKYMTN-heart. I have made a couple comments on this forum against long range shooting but now I realize that these are personal choices every hunter has to make and as long as they are legal it is not for me to judge. There are so many anti-hunting animal rights groups out there fighting against us that we can't afford to lose any of the rights we have right now. That being said I think all hunters need to work at representing hunting in a good light to the non-hunting community in order to insure we can enjoy this sport in the future.
On a side note Wyoming just passed a bill stating that hunting, fishing and trapping are a right and not a privilege so that is pretty awesome.

04-10-2011, 11:34 PM
I'm not against it where it's legal, but the only way I'll ever hunt bears is spot-and-stalk. Maybe it's because that's all I've ever known(MT doesn't allow baiting or hounds), but I love it that way. Baiting to me just sounds too 'easy'. I understand it takes work to set up bait sites and that following hounds is hard, but most of the work is being done by someone(hounds) or something(peanut butter and marshmallows) else. JMO.

04-11-2011, 07:43 AM
Even if you have bears hitting your bait, you can't make them come in during shooting hours.