This post also applies to anyone living near large, not-very-smart game.
Here it is, it arrived in the mail on Saturday, my 2008 Maine Moose Permit Application:
Moose hunting always brings mixed reactions from most people (though I suppose not with this crowd) as even many hunters don’t care much for it, saying things like, “bah, it’s like hunting a cow.” Well yah! A female moose IS a cow. Of course, what they really mean is, “it’s not a challenge, it’s not hunting.” Call it what you want, I call it “put a huge pile of good, free range, organic meat in the freezer.”
Maine has a lottery for permits. You put in for a permit every year and hope for the best. If you don’t succeed, you get another “chance” the next year you put in, and one additional chance each year you don’t get one after that. You can, of course, buy more chances. You put two other persons’ names on your application, and – if you win – anyone of you can shoot the moose. This turns moose hunting more into a group event, which is also a necessity. The state also auctions off a few permits each year to the highest bidder. Typically some rich dude from Massachusetts wins one, but whatever; the proceeds go to kids’ scholarships (or something). After six years I have yet to secure a permit.
The hunt is quite unlike deer hunting, though; and while a moose is not all that bright, hunting them is by no means easy. It’s a logistical challenge trying to lure (or find) a moose close enough to an old logging road. This is critical, because IT’S A MOOSE! They’re freaking HUGE. You ain’t draggin’ it out . . unless you hire a skidder – which people do. Most people haul a snowmobile trailer behind their truck and use a winch or come-along to haul it up, or they quarter it. During the season, in the thick of moose country, people set up mobile butchering shops in the back of refrigerated tractor trailer trucks that moves the moose in – and out – for a fee. It’s worth it.
If YOU are in an area of large, not-so-smart game, this could be a critical food acquisition strategy immediately after SHTF (they’d all be hunted in a pro-longed TEOTWAWKI situation). Skidders and mobile butchers won’t be available then, so you’ll have to process a PILE of meat in short order, particularly if it’s warm out. Have the skills and equipment to be able to make this happen. In most cases it’d be a lot of work, but it’d also be a lot of food. If events are bad – real bad – it’d be everyone for him or herself, laws would mean nothing, take the meat while you can, because if you don’t – others will.
– Ranger Man