First off, I’m in no position to tell someone what
they did or didn’t see with their own eyes; however, sometimes we as
humans want to see something so bad that we do. One example would be
coyotes with State Farm insurance tags in their ear. Rumors are the
stocked them to lower deer populations. Never mind the fact that out of
all the excellent trappers in
West Virginia, a coyote wearing an ear tag via
an insurance company has never been trapped. Nobody has a gamecam
picture from our good neighbor that is there.
Another great myth is that old rattlesnakes were
stocked to lower wild turkey populations. These were rumored to be
dropped encased in a balloon from a helicopter. Really? What does a
rattlesnake do with a turkey once it kills it? I bet my house that one
coon will do more damage to a wild turkey population that a dozen
rattlesnakes. Raccoons raid the nest of wild turkeys and eat their eggs.
Jim Wilson, an outdoor writer from Monterville,
once created a fictional character called an abbahoochie. The
DNR’s phones rang off the hook with sightings of the
mythical creature. Rumors of abbahoochies killing livestock grew to
legends. People wanted to see it, so they did. The rumor made it all the
way to the pages of “Field and Stream” magazine.
As long as we have an outdoors, we will have rumors
of DNR vehicles dropping off crates with mysterious
animals to control populations. Never mind the fact that it is more
economically beneficial to just sell more tags and raise limits to get
deer killed, instead of purchasing lions or coyotes. Each county has
people who will carry the rumor torch and hand it off to willing ears
that will listen and carry the flame.