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Star-Tribune Update

Megaduck megabust

The $1 million Megaduck Challenge has been canceled.

The controversial national contest, promoted by a Texas waterfowling group, drew the ire of wildlife officials and hunters who feared it would foul up waterfowl research.

Under the plan, the National Waterfowlers Registry was going to offer to pay hunters up to $1 million to shoot drake mallards with federal bands matching certain numbers.

Critics said the contest could promote unethical hunting and skew duck banding data collected by federal officials. Several national magazines refused to run contest ads.

"The concern was that it could influence the reporting rates [of banded ducks]," Wilds said. "People would be reporting in ways they wouldn't normally do."

http://www.startribune.com/stories/531/4021417.html
 

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Thank God!
That's all we needed, people going out and hunting for a certain reason other than being an outdoorsman. People would have left ducks if they were not banded.Numbers of mallards might have went down due to the contest.!!!

Mav....
 

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To be quite honest, I don't see what all the fuss was about. I've read all the commentary about the possible "what-if's"...but I guess I failed to see the connection.

Anyone who was against the megaducks please answer this for me...

How is Megaducks any different than the USFWS using reward bands?

When you think about it they're the same. The feds put on thousands of reward bands each year to increase the band return ratio...wouldn't megaducks do the same thing?...if not more so since it's a regular silver band where the winner wouldn't even know until he called it in, compared to a green reward band where the hunter is automatically made aware he's getting some extra ching? Honestly, how many d*psh*ts do you think are out there that would shoot extra ducks to hopefully "Cash In"? IMO, not many IF any.

I guess I'm sort of playing devil's advocate (since the notion of getting $250,000 to shoot a duck made me queasy like most people for some odd, unexplained reason). Really though, I don't see a difference here...the feds giving out up to $500 on lots of ducks or megaducks giving out a cool mill on 4 ducks. I bet there's WAY more than a million bucks flying around right now in green reward bands.
 

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Matt for the most part when I read this I was like you better band reporting more info, but then the rest of the S### started to surface. First they did not have the blessing of the USFWS, they misrepresented the program to the sponsors, last but not least they planned on sueing the USFWS to gain the band numbers under the Freedom of Information act.

This became just another attempt to exploit and victimize waterfowl hunters. Megaducks was requireing a membership fee to participate, this whole thing was about the money they would make, not data collection.
 

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From what I understand the USFWS opposed it not because of the money offered because they do have those hundred dollar green bands. It was because it would skew their data. To win Megaduck you just called in your band and find out later if its megaduck. Believe it or not there are many people that do not call banded birds they shoot in. So the USFWS has come up with a % of people that dont call their bands in each year. And they figure this number in when they are compiling how many ducks are shot each year. What megaduck would do is throw off the numbers because most likely more people would be calling duck bands in. The USFWS took many years to figure this percentage of people not calling bands in and megaduck would throw all their research off.
 
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