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vide them with enough funds so they could put an investigative staff on the breeding grounds in the springtime and keep them there to the end of the breeding season, so it would not be necessary to pass upon regulations without having all the facts.
We do not know how much damage the crows do in your country, Mr. Sinclair, but we have information indicating that they are doing untold damage, and they are destroying more ducks than the sportsmen kill. We do not know how many are being destroyed, because the Survey has never had men enough to put into that investigative work.
In this particular unit, I would say that we need at least $45,000 more added on for investigative work. That budget item last year was $149,000 and the way it stands now it is $118,000. Certainly, it ought to be restored to the former allowance of last year, if nothing more. That does not enable the Survey to employ more than twenty Federal game protectors to assist the States in stopping violations of the Federal laws. We are talking about reducing the bag limits and shortening the seasons, but we are not doing much to stop the big leaks such as the wholesale slaughter of water fowl by trapping and otherwise for the bootleg market. If the Survey is not given funds enough to employ a reasonable number of men, that particular work is going to be weakened.
For investigative purposes, they certainly need $29,327, which they had last year and which has been eliminated entirely. Of course, we would like to have the appropriations under the Norbeck Act of 1929, if that is possible.
Mr. Shoemaker, the Secretary of the Senate Committee, has been kind enough to come over here and he will tell about a bill which passed the Senate today, which will help, but not take the place of the basic machinery the Biological Survey needs to carry on.
As I stated in the beginning, you might just as well blow up the power plant first and then plan to run a lot of electrified trains. hope, in considering the final shape up of your bill, you will provide at least the amount permitted in the way of cash withdrawals last year.
Mr. Sinclair. Has the value of the product that the Biological Survey has to deal with, which goes on the market annually, ever been computed?
Mr. GORDON. To my knowledge, that has never been done. think it has been done in connection with fur; the only place where they have had such estimates has been in connection with fur resources, which, as I told you, runs as high as $70,000,000 a year. We have had figures on what hunting produces in the way of annual revenue to the people of the country and it has been conservatively estimated at from $350,000,000 to $500,000,000 a year.
Mr. SINCLAIR. Is it as high as that?
Mr. Sandlin. He was game warden from Minnesota, and he made a statement something like this: “There are probably 2 or 3 million ducks slaughtered in the State of Minnesota and actually paid for."
Mr. GORDON. That is right.
Mr. SANDLIN. Nobody was sure that that was correct, yet he was satisfied that it was conservative.
Mr. GORDON. Mr. Congressman, the hunters and anglers in this country are spending $650,000,000 to $700,000,000 a year in pursuit of their favorite recreation. That goes to the general trade, and to the rural people all over the country. That is big income; it is one of the most important resources that we have neglected.
Mr. SINCLAIR. They would not spend that if the thing they are going after is destroyed.
Mr. GORDON. You destroy that, and they will not spend it.
I would like next to call on Mr. Shoemaker, special investigator, Special Senate Committee on Conservation of Wild Life Resources.
TUESDAY, FEBRUARY 6, 1934.
APPROPRIATIONS FOR BUREAU OF BIOLOGICAL SURVEY
STATEMENT OF CARL D. SHOEMAKER, SPECIAL INVESTIGATOR,
SPECIAL SENATE COMMITTEE ON CONSERVATION OF WILD LIFE RESOURCES
Mr. SHOEMAKER. I am not going to take very much time, but I want to voice or repeat what Mr. Gordon has said. Our committee is a special committee, and it is very deeply interested in all matters pertaining to wild life.
On December 20 we arranged for a meeting with the President in connection with a certain program that we were developing. This is not off the record. The President said, "I want you to voice my appreciation and my understanding and my cooperation in all these wild-life programs"; he said, "You can broadcast it to the country; I want the people to know I am for this wild-life program.” lle mentioned the value of wild life and birds to the farming community. He said, as Governor of New York, he was always for the expansion of the wild-life program. He mentioned the fact that in a number of cases, and he gave actual instances of cash that the farmer received for the shooting privileges on his farm, which was enough to pay the taxes. He talked then about the program of giving pheasant eggs and quail eggs to the farm boys and girls, and he gave prizes to those who hatched the greatest number from a particular setting of eggs.
His interest in wild life is a great impetus and encouragement to those of us who are trying to fight the battles. This appropriation, particularly for the scientific work of the Biological Survey, is so important it certainly should be restored. That was the basis of the Biological Survey; that was the beginning of it, that particular division.
Now that we are launched on a great program of restoration, we need the services of that particular division more than ever. This great program of restoration, as Mr. Gordon referred to it, and the Beck committee will report within the next few days; they will outline a general plan of restoration; that plan will involve the utilization of submarginal lands for which $50,000,000 has been allocated; much will be allocated for upland game restoration and mammal restoration, while other parts of it will be used for migratory waterfowl, but how are we going to continue that program of restoration without the scientific knowledge and information which it gathers, and here, at one fell swoop, this is cut out and done away with. Senator Walcott, Senator Pittman, Senator Byrd, Senator Clark, Senator McNary, and Senator Bailey-Senator Norbeck is not here-all asked me to voice their sentiments in favor of the restoration of these items. I thank you.
WEDNESDAY, FEBRUARY 7, 1934.
PRODUCTION OF FUR-BEARING ANIMALS
STATEMENT OF HON. HUBERT H. PEAVEY, A REPRESENTATIVE
IN CONGRESS FROM THE STATE OF WISCONSIN
Mr. PEAVEY. I am appearing before you today at the request of constituents of mine who are vitally interested in the subject matter which I think the previous witnesses were testifying about, namely the appropriation for the Bureau of Fur Resources for the year 1935 amounting to $56,000. I am asking that it be reinserted in the general appropriation bill for the Department of Agriculture.
We have in Wisconsin, as doubtless the committee is aware, a large number of fur raisers. These people, and I do not speak particularly for the individual large fur farmer, so much as for the small fur raiser. These people have been depending upon this department at Washington for a long time for scientific information and advice in carrying on an industry that no one knows very much about. It is still in the experimental stages, to a large degree, and without some such agency to give them information and advice, they are nearly helpless. I do not speak for those who are producing animals for meat. I am speaking only for those who raise animals for fur, such as the fox farmers, mink farmers, nutria raisers, and fitch raisers.
Mr. SANDLIN. Do you have many fox farms in Wisconsin?
Mr. Sandlin. About how many foxes are on each farm, on the average?
Mr. PEAVEY. This would be a guess, but I would say that they would average 50 pair or more.
Mr. SANDLIN. Fifty pair; that would be 100?
Mr. PEAVEY. Yes, and, for the most part, they are high-grade silver-black foxes. There are farmers who raise cross fox and the lower grades, but for the most part they are high-grade silver-black fox.
Mr. SANDLIN. What does this information cover, their diseases? Mr. PEAVEY. Everything; food, care, climate, housing, and kennels. Mr. SANDLIN. And breeding? Mr. PEAVEY. And breeding as well. Let me call the committee's attention to a recent development, I would say, over the last 4 years particularly, that has happened in this industry. Originally, most of these silver-black fox farms were large, well-financed organizations of men of means who got together in the common undertaking. Due to recent developments, the most of those, or a great portion of them, have gone out of existence.
Mr. SANDLIN. Those are the ones who sold the fox to the farmers? Mr. PEAVEY. A great many.
We have this situation: Where individual farmers living out in the country and people even living in the outskirts of the villages, are raising 2 or 3 or 6 pair of foxes and they are the people who need the advice and information more than the large ranchers who have their own advisers, or at least they have access to information.
Mr. SANDLIN. What is the price of these fox furs in ordinary conditions and times, not speaking of the present.
Mr. PEAVEY. In 1928, the average price of registered silver-black foxes was $500 to $800 a pair for breeding purposes; their pelt value was about two thirds of that amount.
Mr. Hart. What is their pelt value now?
Mr. PEAVEY. Their pelt value has risen a little bit this winter; I think it is about $44 to $48, on the average. It has gone down very materially since 1928-29.
It means a lot to the people in my section of the State, because it is particularly adapted to high-grade fur raising. I am sure that if we lose the aid of this Government agency to furnish them reliable information, and so forth, that it is going to cause a serious setback in the industry.
Might I call your attention to this phase of the situation as I am able to ascertain it? The production of high-grade fur, fox, mink, martin, beaver, otter, and so forth, maintained about an even keel in this country for a period of about 75 years; that is, the number of animals taken did- not the dollar value-in this country and Canada maintained about an even keel for about 75 years prior to 1925. Then, due to the large developments of drainage and cher governmental and individual agencies, the production started to ill off, until most of that high-grade raw fur has now depreciated 25 to 30 percent, and it is very evident there will be a still lärger reduction in the next few years.
It seems to us that is is very necessary to the Government and to the public that this industry be maintained and sustained, if not for the present, at least for the future.
Mr. SINCLAIR. Is there any agency where fox farmers or fur farmers could go to get information along their line of buisness?
Mr. PEAVEY. There is none whatever.
Mr. PEAVEY. Yes, and for more reasons than the lack of knowledge. The large individual fur ranchers who have spent a large amount on research and experimentation on these various lines, will not give this information out to the small raiser, so that he must depend upon the Government for his source of information. I do not care to go into any extended presentation of this. I wonder if the committee has had presented to it the expression of the industry from the standpoint of the national publications. I take nearly all these publications and they are very much aroused over the fact that this appropriation is being eliminated.
Mr. SINCLAIR. We have only had the Government officers here and we have had certain others.
Mr. HART. We have had the Biological Survey.
Mr. SANDLIN. We have had the American Game Association and the Audubon Society, and others.
Mr. Hart. Most of those here are equipped with the best propaganda organization in the United States.
Mr. PEAVEY. I am not appearing before the committee in behalf of the Bureau.
Mr. Hart. They use the extension service, and under the extension service they have 6,000 trained propagandists, under a major general.
Mr. PEAVEY. I am appealing for the industry and not for anyone in Washington.
Mr. Hart. They can start up enough trouble for a Congressman in 20 minutes to last a month.
Mr. PEAVEY. I may say that as soon as I learned of this appropriation being eliminated, I took it up with the Department of Agriculture, and they disowned any knowledge of the proposition at all, and said it was on no recommendation of theirs that the appropriation for the department of fur resources was being dropped.
Mr. Hart. They knew it was out of the budget.
Mr. Sandlin. He said that they said it was not cut out on their recommendation.
WEDNESDAY, FEBRUARY 7, 1934.
PRODUCTION OF FUR-BEARING ANIMALS
STATEMENT OF HON. GERALD J. BOILEAU, A REPRESENTATIVE
IN CONGRESS FROM THE STATE OF WISCONSIN
Mr. Boileau. I believe this appropriation has been serving a very good purpose, particularly in Wisconsin and the section where I come from, with which I am more familiar.
I would like to call your attention to the fact that the fur industry is one that we can develop without having any of the unfavorable results that are accompanying any attempt on our part to increase production in any other phase of agriculture.
Mr. SANDLIN. It can be expanded? Mr. BOILEAU. Yes, sir; there is room for expansion; it is not like wheat, cotton, and the dairy industry, where we have a surplus. I think the fur industry is in a little different situation. It is practically a new industry, from the standpoint of its commercialism. I do not know if you really appreciate the size of it.
Mr. SINCLAIR. Will you take some of the dairymen out of the dairy business and put them in the fur business?
Mr. BOILEAU. We have in Wisconsin.
The Fromm Farm with which I am familiar, about 25 years ago the Fromm family, an elderly gentleman and his sons, were dairy farmers, struggling to make a living. They started in the silver-black fox business, I think around 25 years ago, with comparatively small capital. They have established their business to such an extent that in recent years they have been selling a tremendous number of silverblack fox pelts each year. I think I can say conservatively that over a period of several years, until the last 2 or 3 years, and I do not know what they have been doing in the last 2 or 3 years, but over a period of years, they sold $1,000,000 a year worth of pelts, in both the New York and London markets.