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Wildlife Advocates, Hunters Unite Against Sharpshooter Cull at East Hampton Rally

About 300 people, largely from East Hampton, protested the USDA program to cull the deer on Saturday.

About 300 people turned out for a rally in East Hampton to voice their opposition to the sharpshooter deer cull program. 

Organized by the The East Hampton Group for Wildlife, which has already filed suit against East Hampton town, village, and the town trustees, organized the "No Cull" rally and demonstration. 

East Hampton Town and Village, along with Southold Town, has agreed to a program that would eliminate 2,000 to 3,000 deer on the East End. The Long Island Farm Bureau secured $250,000 in grant funding to embark upon the United State Department of Agriculture's sharpshooter program to reduce the number of deer.

Demonstrators held signs that said, "No Science? No Cull!" and "Save the Deer," and "Please Don't Kill My Mommy." 

Ron Delsener, the well-known rock concert promoter who has a house in East Hampton Village and is funding the group's lawsuit, helped kick off the rally by comparing former town councilman Dominick Stanzione, credited with the town's deer management plan, to former vice president Dick Cheney. "He never said let the local hunters do what they do every year," he said.

The rally was supported by other organizations, such as Hunters for Deer, local hunters who don't want to see federal intervention take place, and Long Island Orchestrating for Nature, known as LION.

The rally started at the Hook Mill in East Hampton at 1 p.m. Demonstrators then marched with their signs to Herrick Park, with some chanting, "What do we want? Stop the cull. When do we want it? Now." They gathered at the park for about an hour for dispersing. 

Bill Crain, a Montauk resident and founder of the Group for Wildlife, asked the crowd, largely East Hampton residents, to write the village and town boards. "Tell them: If they want to be re-elected, stop this cull. Change their minds. They don't have a chance of re-election if they are going to pursue if they are going to pursue this barbaric, murderous slaughter. Let them know, we will not stand for this," he said.

Scattered in the crowd were residents from outside East Hampton, such as Kelvin Bryant, a Yapank hunter who brought his 12-year-old son Benjamin with him in protest in support of Hunters for Deer and Long Island Archers. "They are spending thousands of taxpayers' dollars on this and we would do it for nothing and we have the same results that they would expect from the USDA culling these deer." 

Police presence was low, though traffic control officers helped stop traffic for marchers to cross the street and for photographers to safely take photographs of the crowd. 

The protest was peaceful except for one dust-up between Delsener and Patricia Hope, a former biology teacher who attended the rally to pass out fliers called, "Culling East Hampton's Deer Herds: There Is A Better Way To Do It." 

Delsener  yelled at Hope to leave. "It's my rally not yours," he said. You're an animal," he said. "She's for the cull," he told the crowd. "

However, Hope, a member of the East Hampton School Board, said Delsener didn't understand her position at all. Her flier states, "We don't need to bring riflemen to East Hampton to slaughter our white-tailed deer. We can address the control of conception within the herds." She wants to see East Hampton research immuno-contraception, an innovative method of birth control without the chemicals that contaminate other species. 

Wendy Chamberlin January 19, 2014 at 02:21 PM
I can see by your post why you are underground. I suggest you stay there.
Conservative Underground January 19, 2014 at 02:32 PM
Make me...oh you can't. Too bad, so sad, move along.
Dell Cullum January 19, 2014 at 02:46 PM
Wendy, don't feed the troll.
Animalover January 19, 2014 at 03:32 PM
Missing from this report is the hard work of members of the Wildlife Preservation Coalition of Eastern Long Island, who's founders created a petition on Change.org that has gathered @11,000 signatures AGAINST the USDA cull, and who helped to galvanize and motivate people to come to this Rally. The Coalition is presently mounting a lawsuit against ALL the Towns and Villages that have signed on to the cull, as well as the DEC and USDA!
MARTIN DREW January 19, 2014 at 03:46 PM
The first culling " the local" ... Deer .. the other other meat .. when taken correctly .. support local hunters - if there are any left .. ? Regardless - Deer are going to die. Take them correctly - so food is the benefit .
Jerry Ruschmeyer January 19, 2014 at 03:52 PM
Something needs to be done ! The deer r out of control ! Sharpshooters is not the answer and should be stopped !
Michael Tessitore January 19, 2014 at 05:22 PM
I want to thank all of you that have supported Hunters For Deer, with your letters to our elected officials and purchases of our raffle tickets on our website. Please continue to back us, and help us change the hunting regulations on Long Island, so that hunters can be more successful in the field. Thank you all. www.huntersfordeer.org
Conservative Underground January 20, 2014 at 05:47 AM
Dell, don't feed the deer.
Dell Cullum January 20, 2014 at 08:34 AM
Michael Tessitore, I want to say your very knowledgeable and I was glad to have heard your stand. CU, come out from behind the mask and I'll address you. If not, you don't even exist. Your just an anonymous not so clever band name. But I will use your comments to benefit my agenda. Personally, I don't feed the deer. I don't think I need to. In fact no one can provide significant data that shows they are even starving at all. Once again, there has got to be some balance in the reasoning. Is their too many deer or are they starving in large numbers? I photograph deer EVERY DAY, I have never seen a starving deer. That doesn't mean there isn't any, it just means that there couldn't possibly be that many. I photograph from Napeague to Wainscott for 3.5 years between 4am and 9am and have never seen a starving deer, nor have I ever hit a deer or had a deer hit me. Although they are plentiful yet far from over populated, I have not seen a rise in numbers in the areas that I frequent. Many of these areas will be target areas for the cull. ANd how about the Nature Trail issue? THEY (USDA) ARE USING THE NATURE TRAIL AND SURROUNDINGS AS A KILLING AREA .... the Nature Trail. I really wish someone from the Nature Trail Committee, LVIS, other Village Organizations, or Nature Groups would address this more thoroughly. I always looked at Nature Trails, Preserves and Sanctuaries as places of safety for wildlife as the world around them constantly changes. This is an example that this is no longer true and no sanctuary is really safe, hence the deer, now the swan, etc., etc. Before you know it, your great grand children will be playing on a private tennis court where the Nature Trail "ONCE" was. What a loss, what a friggin loss.
Dell Cullum January 20, 2014 at 11:50 AM
Sorry Michael, my comment to you was sincere. I did listen to you and found your statement wonderfully put. Good work. The mention of CU was not to be confused with my statement to you. I was just requesting that he join the conversation as a person and not a title. It gives the feel that we're discussing the issue with people who care and not those who hide behind titles. The rest was just my statement and not in rebuttal to you. Thanks again.
Michael Tessitore January 20, 2014 at 11:57 AM
DELL, hahaha, I figured it out. The CU, messed me up, thats why I deleted my comment. Thank you.
Conservative Underground January 20, 2014 at 12:43 PM
Sorry Dell no can do. I have used my real name in the past, not here but on another site, and had people send hate mail and even come to my house. So no, too many kooks out there who take this stuff too far. Back to the topic; there are too many deer. Period. Now if all you deer huggers are willing to put your name on a paper and accept any and all liability for damages, injuries and/or death resulting from accidents or diseases due to the out of control deer population fine. I would support holding off on the cull. But some how tho I think when it comes down to it you and the rest of your nature loving ilk will never put your own dollar on the line; it is always someone else's money.
Dell Cullum January 20, 2014 at 01:11 PM
Without a name, I cannot take you seriously. And by your knowledge of the issue I'm missing nothing. But I will continue to use your comments to my benefit. The deer population is not a number that has been tallies. If one is to claim there is a population issue, shouldn't one have data to back it up or do we just take the word of rumor as fact? If you dispel the population issue... Is there still an issue?
Animalover January 20, 2014 at 01:45 PM
The BS being spewed out by cull proponents, is the same sort of crap we heard when we were told to "Beware of the Mushroom Cloud"...how soon we forget that there are those testosterone loaded "macho" men just itching for a kill...killing solves all their problems...They are too stupid to be interested in facts...so any conversation with them is a pure waste of time! End of story!
MARTIN DREW January 20, 2014 at 02:02 PM
@Animalover- calling people names from behind a fake name - TROLL- is what you've become . Can't converse with a nameless Troll .. who thinks MACHO men are itching for the kill .. culling / I support it - IF taken the deer yields useable : meat / ie ; food. . I support extended hunting season to achieve goal ( reduction of herd size ) I support hunting ...for food... as a Animal Lover . You just want to call people stupid to make yourself feel better while you hide behind your addy .. #Animalovertroll
Animalover January 20, 2014 at 02:25 PM
Troll, schmoll, who gives a hoot what you call people who disagree with you...and who gives a hoot about supplying dead animal flesh (isn't it filled with ticks, wasting disease and lead bullets???) to poor people who don't even know where that meat is coming from! It's time to take meat and killing off the table and for folks like you to get an education!!!
MARTIN DREW January 20, 2014 at 02:44 PM
@ Animalover - first part of my education was to be me .. not a troll - Eating chicken today ? A steak tonite ; some bacon in the morning ; killing is part of eating . You must be 95 lbs and quite the gardner ... Educate yourself to be you .. TROLLS - addys are tools of low self esteem & display a lack of character .. I'M A MEAT EATER ! I allow farmers to do my killing ...I support hunters to hunt for deer .. and EAT THE MEAT .. might add chemical free meat ... Find / save / educate YOURSELF - try first to be proud of who you are and what you believe . # poofbegonetroll
Animalover January 20, 2014 at 02:53 PM
Well, well, well so that troll eats meat, as though I could not have guessed it!!! dead chickens, dead cow flesh, dead pigs, dead anything, so long as others kill it!! And look who thinks that I am not proud to be who I am...not proud of what I believe in...give me a break! You're so full of crap with your "eduational" rant, so full of yourself with your ignorance...just so full of it!
Dell Cullum January 20, 2014 at 03:47 PM
First of all Martin, my good friend... it was I who coined the Troll a Troll. A troll, in this case being someone who could care less about the issues and facts, but rather likes to oppose the main topic with no name making his opinions that of a ghost...invisible and non existent. Please don't back that useless rederick as I do respect you. Now, let me address something you said Martin. First, I meant what I said.... I think your a smart dude. I listen to you at the meetings and say to myself, "Here's a guy who is really passionate about this town, to the point where he's willing to run for office to help it". Got to say Martin, your a better man than me for the courage to attempt such a feat. But, then to see you make a tag one - liner "Deer, the other other good meat".... I just can't picture a leader being so callous about a living thing when it might mean much more to others.... that is until the Village Mayor showed his true face. ANd I'm not talking about eating hamburgers, fish sticks or venison.. don't leave the true topic...we're talking the mass killing of deer in areas where guns should not be allowed. We're not talking about killing to eat... WTF. As far as the TROLL, I'm going to use his lack of facts to talk about the facts. I like to use people like this to benefit the facts. Hate mail...lol, give me a break CU... now THAT was entertaining. Who would bother?
MARTIN DREW January 20, 2014 at 04:14 PM
TROLL - I'm NOT - Martin Drew here - I eat meat - fish too .. Ignorance = food on my plate? I don't have to be the killer .. FARMERS - it's there job .. to feed the masses . I esp. love deer meat - a venision loin prepared BONAC STYLE .. delicious .. stuff .. going to eat a chicken now - eat some pig in the morning -with eggs probably a cow tommorrow nite.. repeat ... I am me .. you don't control my choice of food .. Be who you are -TROLL- #animalovertroll
Dell Cullum January 20, 2014 at 05:43 PM
I'm not sure what Martin's diet has to do with this topic but I've just been told this is common ranting. I'll wait until your done and then maybe we can discuss the culling issue. CU was at least staying on topic, lol.
Darren Gengarelly Sr. January 20, 2014 at 06:15 PM
"its time to take meat and killing off the table" Drink some soy milk and breath Animalover. Your opinion is just that. An opinion. Last i knew i lived in the land of the free. You have every right to have your opinion. So do others. If your so proud why are you hiding behind a screen name. I find this typical behavior from opinionated types with little courage and judgemental opinions. Unaccountability at its finest. Bet i can guess your political affiliation.
MARTIN DREW January 20, 2014 at 06:57 PM
Dell - sorry my friend - PATCH IS troll central - and sorry the phrase not coined by you .. RANTING HUH? You think your tone any different ...? Killing should yield food ... I'm on here alot to defend the other side of issues .. The deer are a problem for alot of people ..300 people out of 16,000 does not show much concern .. sorry to say .. I had 400-500 people turn out for passion .. topics .. nobody cared .. get used to the fact that our town as WE knew it is GONE ... WE are just here to appease homeowners who bitch about their plants ... droppings on the lawn .. you know city folk .. the others lyme diases this / ticks that .. I'm Lymed up and been bitten 1000 times .. I support your effort - I just don't think it will do much .. sorry to say ... so my diet has to do with when killing the deer .. do so in a manner that PRESERVES THE MEAT ... not destroy and discard ..as the culling plans .. I think using local hunters the better idea .. and deer will still be killed .. accept that fact ? You don't believe nothing will be done ... This topic is a tough one so to STAY ON TOPIC / i support hunters to thin the herd and doing so gives us food ..PLAIN ENOUGH for you ? You haven't seen me RANT -- i play with nameless fools for entertainment ... see I treated you different because I know the PERSON .. don't get caught up here .. this is a jungle of nonsense ..-ENTERTAINMENT - You RANT on garbage / now deer ..what next? Im about equality ... BUT in this one way town ... not posdible with all the politics that take liberty one law at a time ... lets agree that we disagree on killing deer... i prefer local hunters vs. gov snipers ..but deer will die . I'm for preserving the meat for good use ... and yes deer is the other other good meat .. antibiotic free ... Don't preach just state your opinion .. we're good .. taunt a RANT ... and we'll go ... I try to keep it civil and factual .. most people just can't handle the opposing opinion ... Hey Find a place for the motorcycle crowd to ride ... you don't think deer made all 300 mules of trails do you ? The first culling in this town .. locals and their liberty .. as for the Deer - I'm ok with a cull done right ( preserving the meat ) I appreciate your passion but selfish humans come first ..I've learned this is the way in our town. Sad but true ... Maybe a rally for equal treatment under the law ... maybe we can use some trails WE created 40+ years ago... One Topic here .. no ... either way 300 people .. good luck with that .. just a reminder 16k people are in this town .. better up the numbers if you think a difference in their plans will be result ... Love your photo work .. it's a war for space .. and the humans will prevail unfortunately ...
MARTIN DREW January 20, 2014 at 07:07 PM
PS @ Dell - TROLL - being a prick on the internet because you can - usually a nameless sarcastic opinionated fool .. yada yada .. All over the internet .. sorry bro but not yours .. regardless .. be well ..
moecephus January 20, 2014 at 10:01 PM
Road kill is acceptable for charity and some personal use in some states. Many who eat meat are loathe or incapable of killig or preparing animals for the store shelves and prefer to get it packaged. They still crave and enjoy it and have no interest in being otherwise. Hunting is not just a macho pursuit followed by people just slavering at the idea of killing something. It just happens to be a handy label for anti hunters to use. In my limited experience with them Vegans and Vegetarians seem to be so full of themselves that no one else is allowed an opinion and their smugness is best ignored rather than allowed to irritate one. So called animal lovers who tout contraception seldom know the facts with attempts to relocate or apply some form of contraception. I know of no contraceptioin program directed at deer have been failures of major proportions. Currently white tail deer populations are ballooning and they are moving into new grounds, mating with mule deer and creating wierd hybrids, and totally destroying crops, ornamentals and suffering malnourishment and illness, I would recommend a combination for the area, extend a local hunt with high bag liimits and if the nubers are not there, bring in the government shooters. If there was a way to harvest these animals and a way for them to be acceptable to use in charites or low cost markets it would be nice but I fear the picketers and deer huggers would stop that. Better to let people go malnourished then use natures harvest,.
Dell Cullum January 21, 2014 at 04:08 AM
I know Martin, we could discuss this all day all night and forever more. Made some great points and I thank you for that. It isn't the same place anymore and I absolutely need to accept that, although hard as it might be. This has never been a hunting issue to me Martin. I'm not an anti hunter... I am an anti slaughter for no reason supporter. I honestly believe even if the state regs favored the hunter and allowed them more opportunity to better manage deer populations, the cull would still be on. The people behind this atrocity don't care about the food for the poor or where the meat is going..they want the deer eliminated and they are willing to make up a bunch of non founded reasons to fill weak and old minds to convince them the deer are dangerous and the species must be slaughtered. And you Martin, a hunter... this cull takes that food off your plate. So, your ok with the federal government coming into your town and killing the animals you hunt for food, taking that food from you and putting it into a storage unit where is a 50 / 50 chance of it ultimately ending up in the waste stream? That's fine if you are, I just don't find the logic in this way of thinking. You are also right on the money with your statement Selfish Humans Come First. I'm glad you at least added selfish. But let me remind you Martin, it was David that defeated Goliath. 16K to 300 people. People defy the odds hundreds of times a day. Your going to be surprised what 300+ can do. Now for your Patch comments. I think this is the second time I've come on here to discuss an issue related to the topic. Last time went horribly wrong, lol and apparently I forgot that when I tried again here. I was under the impression people could discuss the issue here without personalities guiding it into other areas. Now that you reminded me this IS Troll central I will look elsewhere to discuss the topic like a real person rather than with people who want others to take them seriously yet cannot use their names... (still loving the hate mail comment). And your on here a lot Martin? Hey, I love your "RANTS" and yes brother that's what they are,...just like mine. Opinions are personal beliefs shared gently knowing everyone has their own. Rants are personal in your face expressions that your so passionate about you feel the need to tell the world. An "Opinion Out of Control". You have a message, I have a message. They might be different but that's ok. Personally, my beef (no pun intended) is there is no reason to thin the deer population as it's NOT out of control. Selfish humans can correct many of the deer / human issues, that seem to just bother some of the the humans. Hunters can manage the populations in some areas and sterilization in others. It's just NOT necessary to MASS KILL these animals...period. Hiring federal shooters on taxpayers dime of people who are strongly against this also wrong. STAGING KILL AREAS AND SHOOTING IN AND AROUND THE NATURE TRAIL????? Come on Martin, not even YOU could find an angle to back this disaster. But if you could I'd love to hear it. Lastly, I am behind you in your crusade for the motor bike trail issue. I'm not a rider myself but when we were kids we use to go to a place behind the old sand pits off 27 by rest stop west side in Wainscott. They had a mini bike club and we used to ride on some cool trails. As we got older we would use the railroad trails as well. My nephew was also a motor cross champion. ANyway, best of luck and thanks for communicating with me here like a person. It's refreshing. Be well friend...
Michael Tessitore January 21, 2014 at 05:36 AM
http://www.huntersfordeer.org/where-do-we-go-from-here
Dell Cullum January 21, 2014 at 06:54 AM
Thanks Mike. Great post. I'm going to leave this forum and shoot you an email.
jane stuart January 21, 2014 at 09:25 AM
and how sharp are those shooters? are they going to insure they won't be shooting a resident who is walking his/her dog in the dark. has anyone noticed we are very shy of street lights in our town? and what about the horses?
Nanci e. LaGarenne January 21, 2014 at 01:54 PM
Might I suggest a bit of sense and sensibility here? I was not at the 'stop the cull' rally on Saturday. I was not in town that day, but if I was, I would have chosen not to protest, though if I was home and knew Pat Hope was going to speak, I would have attended. The woman is one smart cookie! She is also a realist and a scientist, a retired chair head of a science department, a retired teacher, a school board member, and a mother, a well read person, a non- hysterical person, and a highly regarded member of our community. I speak truth, I do not have to kiss anyone's arse or join any bandwagon. I have stood alone when I had to stand up fir myself. And I have stood with my community members in other protests I was passionate about that mattered. Like over-building out here and safe local drinking water. Do I want a "deer slaughter?" Of course not. Do I think I am better than you if I choose to not eat meat? No. I do by the way, eat meat. And I am still my sweet self in spite of it. And it is my business, nobody else's. I am trying to exist on the planet too and do what's right for me. And my loved ones. And the rest of the world. Yes, starting locally, absolutely concerns me. I do not live in a bubble. However, attacking those we differ in opinion from, is being as fundamentalist as the next group, in my humble opinion. Hunters can hunt, in my book. They feec their families in winter, locally. You do know that everyone cannot go shop at Citterella and eat out at the great vegan places, right? And who are we to judge them? You do know too that we are not supposed to feed the deer? Maybe you don't know that. There are too many and they have lost their habitat, true. And I can guarantee Ron Delsner's house left a bigger footprint than most of the locals. Let us not judge though. Anyone who calls a woman, let alone a good upstanding brilliant woman like Pat Hope, an "animal," is out of flipping line! Pat is smart and the insult probably rolled off her smart back, considering the source, but still, totally wrong. And "... this is my rally...." Oh, really, Ron Delsner?? I thought it was a group community rally?! Well there you have it, my two cents. Am I an advocate of the cull? No. Am I naive in thinking we do not have a deer, Lyme disease problem out here? No. Am I anti-hunters? Nope. Am I evil, then? Bloodthirsty? Nope. Hardly. Am I good with myself? Yep. I know the value of balance. And reason. And this arena could use some very much.

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