Here We Go Again...
- The Macomb Daily
State representatives are proposing a bill that would legalize hunting of mourning doves. Hunting of mourning doves has been banned since 1905 and we believe it should stay that way.
Here we go again: A bill has been introduced in the State Legislature that would allow hunting of mourning doves.
In a back-door approach, several state representatives have introduced a bill that would take away designating game species from the Legislature and give it to appointed members of the state's Natural Resources Commission.
Members of the commission have repeatedly said they would welcome a mourning dove hunting season.
Why should we get excited over this latest attempt to legalize the hunting mourning doves in Michigan?
Since 1905, the hunting of the mourning dove has been banned by state law, and it should stay that way with no exceptions.
What would hunters gain from a mourning dove season? Shooting doves would be nothing more than target practice.
A year ago, state Rep. Susan Tabor, a Lansing Republican, tried and failed to lift the ban on mourning dove hunting to attract more young people to the sport. At that time, we said that hunters would accept the fact that dove hunting would serve no wildlife management purpose.
But why would anyone want to hunt a bird that after dressing would weigh hardly more than an ounce?
That's not hunting. Doves are backyard birds loved by young and old alike.
They're ground-feeding birds that live off of weed seeds and are no threat to agricultural crops. And they are no threat to our homes or property. The state already has an abundance of gaming birds.
Mourning doves live in residential areas where they are fed and enjoyed. So they should be left alone.
Instead of hunting mourning doves, go to the nearest gun range and learn how to handle firearms in a safe manner. That's the way to become a better hunter. You don't want to be known as a hunter of 1-ounce backyard birds.
--The Macomb Daily Editorial Board
- Songbird Protection Coalition