Cast of characters

something bruinDavey Webb (alias Davey Williams): an agent with the Georgia Department of Natural Resources who first started hunting with the Crisps in the fall of 2010.

Hearing demands answers about bear poaching sting

fr bruinmeadowsBy Katie Reeder • SMN Intern

A recurring theme emerged in a congressional oversight hearing last week aimed at shedding light on the questionable tactics and motives of wildlife agencies behind the now-infamous undercover poaching sting known as Operation Something Bruin: where is the line between personal freedoms and governmental oversight?

Congressional hearing puts spotlight on Operation Something Bruin

fr bruinMore than 100 hunters and their supporters packed the historic Haywood County courthouse last week for the latest installment in the ongoing saga over Operation Something Bruin.

UPDATED: Rangers hope to hunt down bear involved in weekend attack

fr bearRangers in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park shot a bear Tuesday that they believe is the same one that attacked a teenager sleeping in a hammock.

Bear hunters’ claims of entrapment gain traction, congressional inquiry launched

fr bruincrowdThe tactics of state and federal wildlife officers in a multi-year undercover sting targeting bear hunters continue to come under fire.

Hunters and their dogs don’t deserve special protections

op dogsBy Bill Lea • Guest Columnist

In the article about the bear dogs attacking a camper’s dogs (www.smokymountainnews.com/outdoors/item/14952), Wallace Messer (a bear hunter whose dogs were not involved in the attack) begins by suggesting the blame for the attack should perhaps be placed on the victims — a strategy used time after time by defense attorneys and their defendants pleading innocence. Even if Kadie Anderson’s dogs had growled as a natural reaction to protect their owner — which Kadie vehemently denies happened — that does not justify being attacked by a pack of a dozen dogs. A forest user and her pets’ well-being were still jeopardized. The bear hunting dog owners should be held accountable just like any other dog owner would be in the exact same situation. Why should any small group of dog owners be given special status with a law that protects only them when every other dog owner in the state would be held liable?

Dog fight in the forest: Woman crusades for legal change after hunting dog attack

out frKadie Anderson was packing up camp after a night in the backcountry with her two Australian shepherds when the peace of an autumn forest waking up from a nighttime rain was decisively broken. 

“A pack of hunting dogs came into the camp and attacked my dogs, almost killed my dogs, bit me a couple of times while I was trying to protect them,” recalled Anderson, an Ohio resident who at the time was camping in the Snowbird Wilderness Area in Nantahala National Forest.

Ancient hunters had some mammoth prey

Names of places throughout the Blue Ridge country pay tribute to the familiar wildlife of the region: Bear Wallow Stand Ridge, Beaverdam Creek, Buck Knob, Fox Gap, Wild Boar Creek, Coon Branch, Wildcat Cliffs, Possum Hollow, Polecat Ridge, Raven Rocks, Buzzard Roost, Eagle Heights, Rattlesnake Mountain, and so on.

A bear hunter for the ages

John Baker (Little John) Cable Jr. is one of the prominent figures in Horace Kephart’s Our Southern Highlanders (1913; revised and expanded in 1922). He steals the show in Chapter 4 (“A Bear Hunt in the Smokies”), which most everybody — including those who don’t care much for other parts of the book — agrees is a fine piece of writing.

Hunters upset about ‘Something Bruin’ tactics

fr somethingbruinHunters from all over the mountains came together last weekend to speak out against the tactics used by undercover wildlife officers in a multi-year investigation  — one that presumably targeted bear poachers.

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