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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
There are two scientists from the University of Pittsburg who have a published article on the Wild Turkey and the damage they are doing to forests. Anyone read it or have a link?


It came to my attention as todays Ottawa Citizen has an article on the 2 scientists. The wild turkey population is on the rise in Ontario and the two scientist claim turkeys are damaging forests in Pa.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Absolutely no scientific research in that article.......

The OC article referenced another published article the two scientists wrote.. I was wondering if anyone had read that. Personally, I think you would have to have a lot more turkeys than we do to cause the level of harm they claim.


The OC article spoke of turkeys being released in Renfrew County. This hit me because I was talking to a Ministry employee and two locals at the time they were doing it. I had property close to where the birds were released. At the time I told them I didn't think it would go well due to the harsh winters they receive in Renfrew County. Happy to be wrong...:smile2: There was great hunting interest expressed by the Canadian hunters that I knew. Knowing I was from Pa they had a lot of questions about turkey hunting.


What ever happened to the theory that disturbing the soil to jump start the dormant seed base was a good thing? That's all we heard about for some time before and during the peak of HR.
 

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That writer OBVIOUSLY had an agenda and scraped so far through the bottom of the barrel to find supporting evidence that he drained the barrel. He offered that there were fewer turkey predators in urban and suburban areas which allowed the turkey population to explode and cause greater damage to "THE FOREST." So, "the forest" in urban and suburban areas had more damage from turkeys. What forest is there in urban and suburban areas?

Anti-hunters have very consistent, and asinine, views of wildlife that are becoming more and more obvious. They are universally in favor of establishing large populations of predators that prey upon, and reduce the numbers of game animals. They are, likewise, universally opposed to any measures that promote the expansion of numbers of game animals like turkeys. These people should be exposed for the charlatans that they are. The two chaps from Pittsburgh were described as "scientists," not wildlife management professionals. That terminology chosen by the article writer says a lot both about the degree of credibility that should be given to the Pittsburgh chaps and to the motives of the writer.
 

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The more I read that article, the more angry I get.
Just what are the credentials of the U. of Pitt "scientists" who are raising all the fuss? Pitt does NOT have a Wildlife Management, Animal Husbandry, or Forestry curriculum. They never have.
The article writer is right with them bellowing of the egregious harm that MIGHT be caused by turkeys with the justification that we DON'T know what actual harm could be caused by propagating such game animals. Did they ring the bell of doom when wolves, cougars, grizzly bears, and all the various birds of prey were given widespread re-introductions before all the actual impact that they MIGHT have to the ecosystem was known? Darn right they didn't. This is just another warning of what will happen to the wilds when wildlife management decisions are made by political hacks with an agenda rather than by wildlife professionals who actually know something about what they speak.
 

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What would you expect from left wing college professors! Remember, these kind of people are educating our young people.
 

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The more I read that article, the more angry I get.
Just what are the credentials of the U. of Pitt "scientists" who are raising all the fuss? Pitt does NOT have a Wildlife Management, Animal Husbandry, or Forestry curriculum. They never have.
The article writer is right with them bellowing of the egregious harm that MIGHT be caused by turkeys with the justification that we DON'T know what actual harm could be caused by propagating such game animals. Did they ring the bell of doom when wolves, cougars, grizzly bears, and all the various birds of prey were given widespread re-introductions before all the actual impact that they MIGHT have to the ecosystem was known? Darn right they didn't. This is just another warning of what will happen to the wilds when wildlife management decisions are made by political hacks with an agenda rather than by wildlife professionals who actually know something about what they speak.

The Ministry of Natural Resources is not a separate agency. Comparing it to our DCNR is more accurate. The experts at the Ministry didn't agree with the theory. So to draw the conclusion that it is either a separate agency.... or Armageddon at the hands of politicians, is akin to the theory that wild turkeys are destroying forests.
 

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The Ministry of Natural Resources is not a separate agency. Comparing it to our DCNR is more accurate. The experts at the Ministry didn't agree with the theory. So to draw the conclusion that it is either a separate agency.... or Armageddon at the hands of politicians, is akin to the theory that wild turkeys are destroying forests.
I wasn't referring to the Ministry of Natural Resources but can see how that may be interpreted from my using the term, "political hack." I directed all my comments at the writer of the article in the Ottawa Citizen and the two Pitt pseudo-scientists. Those three people offered the flimsiest nonsense to support their position rather than analyzing data and coming to a deductive conclusion, a popular tactic of the politically correct. That is my logic in viewing the writer of the article and the Pitt chaps as political hacks.
 

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To be clear, the link is to a newspaper article, not a peer-reviewed journal. 30 seconds on the internet to find the actual journal article documents these Pitt researchers using accepted scientific technique, defined a forested study area and physically measured the feeding areas of a turkey flock comparing it to the feeding areas of a white-tailed deer herd on the same forest floor in a controlled study. They documented a turkey flock's ability to quickly turn the forest floor leaf litter across a significantly larger area than the deer herd.

They then ask what are the consequences of increasing populations of seed scavengers - no one knows for sure today (researchers state there is a lack of previous studies) and the researchers arrive at no scientific conclusion, just suggest possible outcomes that may or may not have negative consequences for biodiversity and the need for further research on these consequences.

This is the same science our own PGC and DCNR apply to our own forests in setting general harvest or DMAP limits. It is the same science researchers down south are using to argue the eradication of feral hogs who are destructive to the forest biodiversity in our southern states.

The Pitt researchers work is legit and it is peer reviewed and adds to the scientific body of knowledge in a specific, very narrow field of study. Because there is so little prior research in this area of increasing turkey population cause/effect on forest biodiversity, that by definition makes these two researchers the experts who know more about this specific topic of turkey population impact on forest biodiversity than possibly anyone else in the entire world alive or dead.

But no, let's just call them names, without any fact or justification other than their chosen profession assign them a political agenda, make assumptions about their personal viewpoints, and then dismiss them and their contributions to the field of biodiversity. I'm not worried about our kids being in these schools learning from these two researchers, leading biologists specializing in forest regeneration - that can only benefit our wildlife and the environment. I'm worried about society's recent inability to think both independently and critically, who confuse news for science and dismiss both. "Sad!"
 

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I am more worried about people who take the word of people who write about incomplete research and draw a conclusion based on it. Research should not be published until,it is complete. The only reason to do so is to try to garner more funds to continue the research and everyone knows the researchers in colleges either publish and bring in more money or lose their jobs. This is no more than unproven speculation. You may buy into that, I don't.
 
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I could not agree with you more - I'm also concerned about journalists who take inconclusive results from a study and offer it as a final verdict. That is irresponsible. The researchers themselves stated their conclusions are speculation, there is no significant cause/effect relationship, and further study is needed. However, if they don't publish their unfinished research in peer-reviewed journals, how else will someone know to design the next experimental step to find the answers to the questions posed by the Pitt study?

Research is an ever evolving, continuing conversation. Saying we can land on the moon in ten years was unproven speculation based on 1950's research in propulsion systems and computer technology. We will never know everything about our world. Without funding knowledge stops. Without publishing what we know, Kennedy couldn't have speculated that a moon shot was possible.

Without continuing research the world is still flat; polio kills millions, atoms don't exist, the universe isn't expanding, electricity and light bulbs aren't in homes, air bags won't save lives, computers don't exist, horses are tilling fields, hunters are flinging sticks lashed with stone chips, heart disease is unavoidable, and cancer would still be a killer. Wait, cancer is still a killer, we need more research. Thankfully those researchers aren't waiting until they find a cure for cancer before publishing their respective study findings so, until then, we stack odds in our favor by stopping smoking, eating healthier, exercising more, identifying carcinogens and keeping them from contaminating drinking water and food...

Or, let's just wait to publish our on-going research. Let's just wait and see how all that unproven speculation on reducing your chances of cancer works out while people needlessly suffer and die. You can buy into that, I don't.

Now, who pays for that funding....that is something everyone should be concerned about. Believe drinking soda everyday is good for you? Bet the sugar manufacturer's association is paying for a study to determine just exactly that....Its one thing to do research, another thing to read it, and yet a third and entirely different thing to take it as gospel. A lot of researchers signed their names to journal articles stating cigarettes are healthy, research paid for by the tobacco industry.

News isn't science, and not all science is science. We need to be able to think critically (a skill in society quickly dying away), think for for ourselves (another skill quickly dying away), be constantly skeptical and question everything. Until then tell me what you know, or you think you know, and I will have the opportunity to accept or reject it after I do my own investigation.
 
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