A story last week claimed that a “showdown looms over hunting in North Yarmouth.” In fact, the real issue is that too much private land in North Yarmouth is posted “no hunting.” As a result, hunters, sports teams, hikers and others are heading toward an unnecessary conflict over use of public lands. The answer is for North Yarmouth selectmen to take a leadership position on educating land owners to allow hunting on private land.
As for public land, the town should build consensus around preserving public safety, allowing hunting at reasonable times and locations, maintaining a healthy wildlife population, and making sure that hunters and non-hunters understand the schedule of uses.
Hunting is a valued tradition in North Yarmouth. We can protect that tradition by bringing hunters, land owners and non-hunters together to build solutions, not conflict.