Greg Lambert of Athens Installed as AWF President

The Alabama Wildlife Federation (AWF) recently elected C. Greg Lambert, a long-time AWF board member and officer, as President for the 2010 -2011 term. Lambert, owner and  President of TeleScreen in Athens, has served on the AWF Board of Directors for over twelve years and brings to AWF a steadfast commitment to the conservation of Alabama’s wildlife and natural resources.
 
“Greg has been an outstanding board member and leader. We are fortunate to have someone with his experience, talent, and energy serve as the next President of AWF. He will be an asset to the Alabama Wildlife Federation and we are looking forward to a productive year under his guidance.” stated Tim Gothard, Executive Director of AWF.
 
In addition to serving on the AWF Board of Directors, Lambert has also served as an Officer of the AWF for the past nine years and works as the Committee Chair for the AWF Wild Game Cook-Offs. He is an avid outdoorsman who enjoys deer hunting, turkey hunting, fishing, and has a passion for connecting our youth with the outdoors.
 
Lambert resides in Athens with his wife, Felicia, and has two children, Jessica and Gregory.
 
The Alabama Wildlife Federation, established by sportsmen in 1935, is the state’s oldest and largest citizens’ conservation organization. The mission of AWF, a 501(c)3 non-profit group supported by membership dues and donations, is to promote conservation and wise use of Alabama’s wildlife and related natural resources as a basis for economic and social prosperity.


Grady C. Hartzog of Eufaula Installed as AWF President  | Posted 8.26.09

Grady Hartzog, President of Hartzog & Company, P.C., was recently installed as President of the Alabama Wildlife Federation (AWF) for the 2009 -2010 term at the organization’s Annual Meeting on August 8. Hartzog has served on the AWF Board of Directors for over ten years and brings to AWF extensive financial knowledge as well as a steadfast commitment to the conservation of Alabama’s wildlife and natural resources.

“Grady has been an outstanding board member, has tremendous wildlife management and outdoor recreation knowledge, and has excellent people skills. It will be an asset to have him serve as AWF President in the coming year. The Alabama Wildlife Federation is looking forward to a productive year under his guidance.” stated Tim Gothard, Executive Director of AWF.

In addition to serving on the AWF Board of Directors, Hartzog also serves as a Board member on the Governor’s Conservation Advisory Board, the Alabama Forest Resources Center, and Ducks Unlimited-Canada. He also served as a board member on the Alabama Forever Wild Land Trust for 11 years and is a member of the Alabama Chapter of the Wildlife Society, the National Wild Turkey Federation and the Weeks Bay Foundation.

Hartzog is the president of Hartzog & Co. and is the past director of MidSouth Bank.

The Alabama Wildlife Federation, established by sportsmen in 1935, is the state’s oldest and largest citizens’ conservation organization. The mission of AWF, a 501(c)3 non-profit group supported by membership dues and donations, is to promote conservation and wise use of Alabama’s wildlife and related natural resources as a basis for economic and social prosperity.





Upcoming Wildlife Seminars 2009

Forest and Wildlife Management for the Private Forest Owner - October 29, November 6, and November 10, 2009

Registration Form (PDF)

 


TVA Resolution | Posted 12.16.08

The AWF Board of Directors recently submitted to TVA a resolution calling them to implement the Lake Guntersville Aquatic Vegetation Management Plan for FY09, and sit back down at the table with the stakeholders who have helped them in the past so that a long-term action plan and funding solution can be collaboratively devised. Stay tuned for more information.

View TVA Resolution here.
 


University of Alabama Now Offers Natural Resources Management Minor | Posted 10.20.08

“Now students seeking a degree in other disciplines at the University of Alabama will have access to information and courses related to forest and wildlife management.” Riley Boykin Smith, AWF Past President
Brochure/Course Requirements (PDF)
 


New Fines for Game & Fish Violations | Posted 6.9.08

HB677 - The Game and Fish Fines Update Bill that was backed by AWF and a host of other landowner and wildlife conservation groups passed in the Alabama Legislature and was signed into law by Governor Bob Riley on May 16,
2008. This event marked a bad day for poachers and trespassers and a great day for landowners, hunters and hunting clubs, wildlife conservationists, and conservation law enforcement.
 
Read “A Bad Day for Poachers/Trespassers” - by Tim Gothard, AWF Executive Director
 


The Case for Hunting & Fishing License Increases | Posted 1.10.07
 
Funding is the basic ingredient necessary to implement new or improved programs, whether it’s more biologists, more conservation enforcement officers, expanded public hunting areas, or increased stocking of fish in our lakes and rivers. Unfortunately, expanding existing efforts was simply not doable in many situations because of limited funding.

Read “Time is about to Expire” - by Riley Boykin Smith, AWF Past President
 


Hunting Lodge Tax Issue | Posted 8.17.06

The Department of Revenue has been considering the promulgation of a new rule to address collection of lodging, amusement, and sales tax associated with hunting lodge activities.  Upon review of the proposed rule AWF identified several areas that caused us significant concern on behalf of our members and for hunters in general.  Specifically, the proposed rule contained:
  • new assertions related to tax collections for which AWF held documents from the Department of Revenue expressing exactly the opposite
     
  • ambiguous and conflicting language that we believed could open the door for inappropriate taxation of hunting facilities of all kinds, both public and private
     
  • interpretations which were inconsistent with our view of the nature and intent of the use of equipment and management practices at hunting lodges and hunting camps that could result, in our view, in inappropriate application of sales tax
Because of that concern, AWF contacted the Commissioner of Revenue, Tom Surtees, and the Commissioner of Conservation, Barnett Lawley, and expressed our problems with the proposed rule.  Thanks to Commissioner Barnett Lawley, AWF and ALFA representatives met face to face with Commissioner Surtees and the State Finance Director and our concerns were outlined in detail.  Specifically, we requested that they take steps to reconsider the issue, including further clarification on the meaning and interpretation of certain aspects of the referenced tax laws, and to take action that would not result in the proposed rule and/or its potential negative effects.
 
A new opinion released by the Attorney Generals addresses this issue.  AWF believes this favorable opinion is a result of efforts to address the concerns raised by AWF and ALFA at the meeting with Commissioner Surtees and the concerns expressed by members of the hunting community. 
 
Click here for the recent Attorney's Generals opinion on questions related to this issue.
 


Baiting is Bad for the Resource | Posted 2.7.01

Frequently Asked Questions (PDF)  |  Research/Studies Related to the Negative Impacts of Baiting (PDF)
 
 
The Alabama Wildlife Federation (AWF) passed a Resolution in February 2001 against baiting.
BOTTOM LINE - BAITING IS BAD FOR THE RESOURCE.

  • It increases the chance for disease transmission and spread among deer and other wildlife - Wildlife research has shown that baiting deer causes them to unnaturally concentrate around baited areas. This increases the likelihood of spreading diseases between animals by direct contact and through eating bait contaminated with disease causing agents shed in feces, saliva or other excretions.
The following diseases are not currently present in Alabama, but they are causing major problems in several northern and western states. If these diseases make it to Alabama, and we hope they don't, baiting would significantly increase the opportunity for these diseases to spread. A number of states that have allowed baiting in the past have now outlawed the practice due to the role of baiting in the spread of these diseases. States that have a full or partial ban on baiting include: AL, AK, CA, CO, CT, GA, ID, IL, IN, IA, ME, MA, MI, MN, MS, MO, MT, NM, NY, PA, RI, SC, TN, VA, WI, WY &WV.

  • CWD - Chronic Wasting Disease: an infectious disease that leads to the death of the animal. CWD is transmitted laterally, meaning live deer infect other deer. CWD is believed to be spread by deer ingesting the feces or saliva from another deer with the disease. CWD has been found in free-ranging deer or elk in the following states: CO, IL, NE, NM, SD, UT, WI, & WY.

  • Bovine Tuberculosis: an important contagious disease of cattle that can be spread from animals to humans and can lead to death. Baiting was identified as a key factor in the spread of Bovine TB in wild deer in Michigan.
The following diseases are present in Alabama and could spread more rapidly due to increased congregation of deer as a result of baiting.

  • Demodectic Mange: causes hair loss and lesions to the infected animal.

  • Parasitism: transmission of many harmful parasites of deer including lungworms and stomach worms increases when deer are concentrated at bait sites.
In addition, aflatoxicosis is a poisoning caused by aflatoxin, and aflatoxin is produced by fungi that develops on corn, soybeans, peanuts, and other grains. If high levels are ingested, it can be fatal to wild turkeys, quail and other non-target wildlife species. Corn and other grains used for baiting is often unregulated, unlike the grains for livestock that must be tested for aflatoxin levels. Studies have demonstrated bait piles can contain harmful levels of this toxin.

  • It makes wildlife, especially turkeys, more susceptible to predators - Predators learn that wildlife will congregate at bait stations or piles and simply wait for their next meal to arrive. AWF's land stewardship biologist has personally observed six predator-killed turkey carcasses over the course of one summer around wildlife feeders.
  • It negatively impacts turkeys, quail and other ground nesting birds by concentrating potential nest predators like raccoons - Research shows that ground nests in the vicinity of bait stations have a greater risk of discovery by predators than nests in areas where bait stations do not occur. Raccoons and striped skunks are the most abundant nest predators.
  • It's bad for the long-term health of hunting - it sends a bad message to non-hunters who otherwise support our right to hunt. Only 7% of the population hunts. Fortunately, a large portion of the population that does not hunt supports our right to hunt. Hunting over bait sends a negative message about hunting to those who otherwise support our right to hunt. Hunting is a $700 million industry to Alabama annually. We don't want to loose it.

  • Over-browsing near bait results in the destruction of habitat - as population densities increase at these baiting areas, the pressure on the surrounding habitat increases. In many cases baiting deer has created populations that exceed the carrying capacity of their environment. Deer eating at bait stations will over-browse native vegetation in the area as well. They select the better quality plants and cause an increase in plant species that have little or no wildlife value. The amount and type of plant species are negatively affected by he concentrated foraging of a baited deer population. In addition, high concentrations of deer around bait stations alter the local habitat which leads to changes in the species composition of co-existing bird populations; including a decrease in abundance and diversity of songbirds.
  • The cost of baiting deer to compete with other hunters who bait will be too high for some hunters - possibly reducing the number of hunters. Some hunters will not be able to afford the amount of bait necessary to compete with other hunters who bait on adjoining properties.
  • Impossible to enforce - difficult to assess the level of compliance with the law. May also facilitate illegal activities such as the shooting of deer at night.
DON'T GAMBLE WITH OUR WILDLIFE RESOURCE!

 


Wildlife Heritage License

There’s now a tangible way to directly help protect Alabama's wild, scenic state land and waterways for viewing and some sporting. A new program called the Wildlife Heritage License lets you help save the state's wild areas.  >> More