It appears that process was the first casualty in the deer hunt in Dundas Valley, resulting in a renegotiated deadline to end the hunt which has closed the Headwaters Trail. The trail will be re-opened December 25.
A long term agreement on use of these lands by hunters from the Haudenosaunee needs to be established (or perhaps an agreement that has hunting take place in areas other than HCA lands with established trails) if there are to be continued good relations, based on trust and mutual respect. It sounds like the HCA was involved in this type of process, so it seems only fair for the process to be respected by all.
Here's the latest from the local daily:
Native hunters asked to leave Dundas Valley
ANCASTER The Hamilton Conservation Authority has asked Haudenosaunee Six Nations hunters to end their two-week deer hunt on Dundas Valley conservation lands by Dec. 25.
“They have consented to reduce the length of the closure to have the trails open Christmas Day, and that there would be no further hunting for the remainder of the year,” HCA chief administrative officer Steve Miazga said Tuesday.
The move comes after an early-morning conference between HCA chair of the board Chris Firth-Eagland and Miazga, who then contacted members of the Haudenosaunee Confederacy and asked them to leave the western part of the conservation area near Paddy Green Road where they set up a deer hunt site on the weekend.
The Haudenosaunee Six Nations Confederacy members, who say they have treaty rights to hunt in the area, began hunting deer with bows on Sunday and had planned to remain there until the end of the year.
“In order to have a relationship with the Hamilton Conservation Authority, if they ever hope to be partner stewards with the citizens of Hamilton, through the city of Hamilton and the Hamilton Conservation Authority, then they must lead in this instance and show support for the work we’ve been doing in looking at Iroquoia Heights (deer management) and get their people out of the Dundas Valley,” Firth-Eagland said Tuesday morning.
THE CONSERVATION AUTHORITY WAS HOPING FOR “A GRACEFUL WITHDRAWAL get out within the next several days – and tell us you are coming back to the table with us at the Deer Management Advisory Committee to help us understand the issues and work together in the long term,” Firth-Eagland said.
“I asked Steve Miazga this morning to go back to the Haudenosaunee as quickly as possible with their own words, with their own notion. I urged him to look at the minutes of when they came and made their presentation, and their reference that they are thinking seven generations to the future, that they must plan for the health and welfare of the natural environment.”