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I am actually a mushroom picker from CHEMULT. Just wanted to clarify a few items. These pickers pay $200 per year for a permit (in other districts it is much cheaper) to pick matsutake's. It is illegal for pickers to camp in the woods, they must camp in a designated mushroom camp (or internment camp as we like to say). The federal camp charges $400 per season for a camp and each camp is allowed only 4 people and 1 vehicle. So, most of the pickers do not use the federally owned camp. Instead, they camp at private mushroom camps at about 1/3 of the cost. I can honestly tell you that most pickers are respectable, but as in most cultures, there are a few bad apples. These people are treated terribly by most of the law around here, harrassed, and over charged. You state that they "remove nutritional material needed by our forest animals." Let me ask you a question. Have you ever picked mushrooms? I pick every year, and I have yet to beat a deer or elk to a mushroom patch. We pickers get what the animal leaves us! As to "defecating everywhere." I am pretty sure that my stuff is biodegradable, and tell me that you have never gone in the woods? Lastly, I want to know what you mean when you state that they "threaten other forest users." Why would you or anyone feel threatened. I feel like that is rather racist and ignorant. You are obviously uninformed.
I am a white picker who lives in the community year round and would also like to add that this community would lose businesses if we did not have the yearly pickers. They bring more revenue here in 2 months than most businesses make during the summer months. And that is a fact. Have a good day!
posted 2 years, 6 months ago
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