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Harvey in Alaska looking at mountain sides

Right now, I think most people come here trying to find out what happened in Alaska and all the fancy “Poaching” headlines and media which of course writes headlines to get clicks so they can “get paid”.

Probably the best thing for me to do is to just share an interview I did with Jason Houser that was published in Vents Magazine which explains most of what happened in Alaska and my feelings and facts about what happened.  

I pride myself with honesty and my character has never been in question when it comes to conservation or hunting.  This charge and everything that came with hurt me to my core and I am 100% defending myself.  More facts and things outdoorsmen should know will come after the situation is settled.

Harvey Anthony the Bear Whisperer: What Really Happened?

There has been a lot of internet chatter and blogs written recently on TV hunting personality Harvey Anthony and the alleged illegal taking of a black bear in Alaska. Many of you might know Harvey better as Blaine Anthony, the Bear Whisperer. I recently had a chance to talk with Mr. Anthony about what the federal government is accusing him of and offered him a chance to tell his side of the story. Remember, everyone in our country is innocent of any crimes until convicted in a court of law. Mr. Anthony is currently waiting for his day in court and looks forward to telling his side of the story.

Jason Houser: So there has been some buzz on the internet regarding a Lacey Act Violation you have been charged with while hunting in Alaska.

Harvey Anthony:  There sure has, and man it has been sensationalized in the media with headlines like “Bear Whisperer busted for poaching” and “Feds say Bear Whisperer is Bear Poacher”. It is ridiculous.

Jason Houser:  So, let us get right to it, let us know what happened. This is your time to let the truth be known.

Harvey Anthony:  Well, it’s simple. I booked a bear hunt with an outfitter in Alaska and went bear hunting from a boat for a week back in 2017. We stayed along the Alaska coast and tried to spot bears from the boat. When we see a bear, we can get on a skiff, go to shore, and try to stalk in on it. In the afternoons, usually about 4 pm, that captain drops us off on beaches wherever we are at the time, and we wait for bears to come out of the woods. If it is a bear we are interested in harvesting, we will try to harvest it.

Jason Houser:  I assume by the charges, the outfitter put you on some property you should not have been on?

Harvey Anthony:  Well, that is yet to be determined, but that is what the Federal Government says. Of course, none of the people on the boat know where we are, we do not have a choice of where the boat goes and where the captain drops us off. We pay for a hunt and rely on the people we pay to do things right. That being said, after I was charged, I was very interested in knowing where I was.  I got a map from the outfitter, and he pointed out my exact location to me in May of 2022. He showed me the Alaska hunting handbook he went by, and on the map that is published in the hunting book they hand out to hunters…. It clearly shows that the bay I got dropped off on was not on a National Park.

Jason Houser:  Wait, I am confused. You say the Alaska hunting law book given to hunters, so they know the laws and know where to hunt, shows the land you harvested your bear on was a legal place to hunt, but the Federal Government says that it is their land and not Alaska’s land?

Harvey Anthony:  That is 100% correct.

Jason Houser:  So, is the book wrong or is the Federal Government wrong?

Harvey Anthony:  I do not know.

Jason Houser:  So, to sum it up simply, you booked a hunt, and the outfitter told you where to hunt, The Alaska law book says you can hunt there, but the Federal Government says that is their land and charged you with harvesting a bear on their land.

Harvey Anthony: Ya, that is the short version.

Jason Houser:  What makes this seem even worse for you, is you lied on the report where it asks where you shot the bear. To me that makes it sound like you knew, so you put a different place down.

Harvey Anthony:  I can see how it would look that way. But remember, none of us on the boat knew where we were. We are 125 miles out to sea literally. When we all filled out our harvest report, we asked the captain of the boat where we were as none of us had any idea. We wrote what he said…. We had no other choice; it is not like cell phones worked out there.

Jason Houser:  I have only heard about you getting charged for this, has anyone else been charged?

Harvey Anthony:  Not that I know of thank goodness. Some of the biggest companies in the outdoor industry have been on the same trip and been on the same beach as I was. I am not going to mention names, but my guess is because I am “The Bear Whisperer,” I may have seemed to be the best guy to go after. I also want to make it clear that I have no malice against the conservation officers or anyone else, they are doing their job. Do I think someone should be charged with a hunting violation when with an outfitter? No…. I think the outfitter should be held responsible, and frankly in almost every other state in the country, that is the way it is.

Jason Houser:  I saw the video of the hunt…. Are there property lines marked anywhere along the beach showing it is federal ground and hunting is not allowed?

Harvey Anthony:  No, no way. If I saw a sign that said “National Park 10 miles away” I would have gotten off that beach. I would not risk my entire career over a bear. I respect the animals and the people that protect them. That being said, I have learned this year that all land below high tide is Alaska’s land by law.  I harvested my bear below high tide as well, so even if the Alaska Game regulations book is wrong, the bear was still harvested on Alaska’s legal hunting property.

Jason Houser:  Well, I am sorry this happened to you, and I can now see why you will not make a plea agreement with the feds. I admit that when I go to an outfit in a different state, I do not ask him to show me property maps to make sure I am on his land, maybe I will now though.

Harvey Anthony:  I can tell you; I do. I can say this, if you hunt in Alaska, even with a guide, you as the hunter personally better know where you are at all times. I know hundreds, maybe thousands of fellow sportsmen, and I do not know one that books a hunt and then checks a federal or local map to be sure where they are when the guide drops them off in a stand.

Jason Houser:  Do you have a copy of the map that comes from the Alaska Hunting Regulations book that shows the bay you are being accused of hunting in that I can show the readers?

Harvey Anthony:  I sure do, I will get you a copy. As a side note, as of 2023, the book continues to show that it is huntable Alaska land. I feel bad for anyone that does though because I do not know of another single resource online or in print that says you cannot hunt that land. 

Jason Houser:  Thanks for talking with me today to clear things up.

Harvey Anthony:  It has been my pleasure.

For more information on Harvey Anthony please visit www.harveyanthony.com

Jason Houser is an award winning author with more than 2,600 articles published in print. 

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