Sandhill cranes are majestic birds and beautiful to see — so much so that a popular wildlife festival is held every January surrounding their annual migration through Tennessee. The endangered whooping crane flies with them, and hunters inevitably will kill some of the whoopers too while they’re shooting at the sandhills.
So this proposal will hurt the state’s growing eco-tourism industry and — for bonus points — it could jeopardize the recovery of a vanishing species. And why would we consider such a stupid thing? So a bunch of Elmer Fudds can don camo, strut around with their guns and blaze away at the sky for fun. Yahoooooo!
Jane Goodall and Jimmy Carter are among the many opponents of this idea. They have spoken out and that only seems to have inflamed the hunters, who see Goodall and Carter as a couple of interfering pussbags. Hunters now are looking at shooting cranes as some kind of God-given right, so get ready for the sandhill crane hunting season.
Update: TWRA to recommend compromise on hunting season.