Letter to the Editor 07-14-17

It’s a shame that the Hancock Park District board doesn’t recognize the community value and conservation value of allowing previous normal hunting access at Litzenberg — access that was tied to the hunting seasons, and includes only a small portion of the park.
Hunting is not an activity that impinges on wildlife photography, horseback riding or other outdoor activities. The woods can accommodate a variety of outdoor activities simultaneously. It is incredibly disappointing to see these restrictions.
Season-length restrictions started last year, and look like they are heading to an outright ban on hunting at Litzenberg in the next couple of years.
The logic of the board is disingenuous.
There is plenty of work to be done among the parks. Certainly the work at Litzenberg can be scheduled around the park use. How much trail improvement will be done while the leaves are changing?
Hunting doesn’t restrict other outdoor activities or educational opportunities. Pheasants Forever has donated to the parks. Litzenberg has hosted No Child Left Indoors educational events teaching hunting, fishing, boating, and animal tracking skills. Cutting two months off of the hunting season does adversely affect hunting. How could it not have an adverse effect?
As far as no-show hunters needing to be tracked, it is short work to check off who came and who didn’t.
Litzenberg obviously is not the only place to hunt, but it is an excellent place to hunt.
U.S. 224 is a heavily used road. There are many deer killed every year by cars on the stretch near Litzenberg. Hunting lowers the frequency of these accidents by keeping the deer population in check.
Hunting also ensures that the deer and other animal populations do not get so dense that they are decimated by communicable diseases.
There is a rich history of hunting on the land. Indians hunted the land. Homesteaders hunted the land. Otta Litzenberg wanted the land to be sustained as a forest preserve. He, no doubt, hunted the land. Hancock residents have enjoyed hunting there for years. Don’t let this legacy disappear simply because a 30-year trust is expiring.
Joseph Laumeyer


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