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Video: Holley FD, NY Squirrel Kill Fundraiser Under Scrutiny. Animal Rights Activists Want it Shut Down. Is This Hunting or Not?

The Holley Fire Department (NY) held its 7th Annual Hazzard County Squirrel Slam yesterday. The event sold out its 1,000 tickets for the event at $10 per person. The prizes ranged from $50-$200. Firearms were also raffled off at the event.

Basically, for those of you who don’t know what a “squirrel slam” is (including me), it is where you kill squirrels and turn them in to see if you won. Each person who bought a ticket can turn in up to 5 squirrels and they must have been killed the day of the event.

In theory, 5000 squirrels might have died yesterday in the Holley area. Each year it has gotten bigger. Last year there were only 200 tickets.

The Holley FD mandates that all New York State Hunting and Licensing rules are to be followed. I believe the kill limit is 6 squirrels per day per person.

Yesterday, during the event, there were groups on hand to protest the event. There was even a petition on to stop the event with over 15k petitioners

There is even a Facebook Page about stopping the event.

Apparently no one even noticed the event for the past 6 years…

Democrat And Chronicle:

Holley Police Chief William Murphy said the FBI is investigating death threats against village and fire officials. “People have issues with squirrels,” he said.

Stoking the outrage was the introduction of a new prize category that rewards children 14 years and younger with $50 for the heaviest squirrel.

A Blog by Davy V. has also offered his spin of the “Squirrel Slam” as children being rewarded for killing. Read about that here. He somehow relates the event to the ambush in West Webster, NY that left two of our brothers dead.

I fail to see any similarities between the two. Nor do I appreciate the attempt at comparing them.

Davy further states:

Among the guns will be an AR-15 “Assault Rifle” in .22 caliber, a similar version of the one used in the West Webster, NY ambush and the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting in Newtown, Connecticut.


“People around here they do kill these animals but they eat them, they use their pelts, they’re not going to waste and as far as these people? They can go back home where they come from,” said 
Kendall, NY resident Urb Bennett. “We don’t go to their community and protest. All we want to do is come out here and be left alone.”

This is what I think:

I have never killed a squirrel, nor have I eaten one or used its pelt. I have only been hunting once. I killed a turkey…then cooked it and ate it for dinner. From what I have read, the FD utilizes the event as a fundraiser and the community supports it. The animals don’t go to waste and they are used for food.

Hunting…that is what it seems like to me.

Fathers probably take their sons, brothers might venture out together. Grandfathers might be involved. Let’s not forget the granddaughters, sisters, daughters, mothers, and others who might partake in this event.

I might even go so far as to say that families might partake in the event. Drawing kids out of in front of their tv’s and into the great outdoors.

Bad? More like unfortunate if you were a squirrel yesterday. Just as unfortunate as the chicken I had for lunch or the fish I am having for dinner.

The only thing I might say to the Holley FD is to raise the price of the tickets to increase the fundraising. I am not sure that I would increase the amount of tickets next year, 5,000 is a lot of squirrels. Maybe they should even check with the wildlife conversationalists to make sure they aren’t impacting the squirrel population to a point that there aren’t enough for the following year.

I realize that there are many who have differing opinions. You are entitled to your thoughts as well.

Here are some videos of the events

Comments - Add Yours

  • RK

    I love how the media is still parroting that the AR15 was used in CT. It was not – only handguns.

  • Mary Pappas

    I have my own opinions on this. But I have a question. Do all of you who want to kill these squirrels, do you have pets? Do you love them as part of your family? If your pet got out and was killed by a car, would you hurt? If so, do you feel any pain whatsoever when you kill something? I just would like to know if you don’t, then why? Because it is something that causes you upset (or damage to your property?) I am trying to understand the mindset, something dying at your hands, and you feel nothing?

    • The Fire Critic

      I have two dogs and it would suck if anything happened to them. I have never had squirrels as let’s so I don’t know what I would think.

      Do we have an estimate of how many of the dead squirrels were family pets yet?

  • Mary Pappas

    Can do without the sarcasm. My point it, it wouldn’t be ok for your pet to die, but it is ok because this animal you don’t like or have an issue with? Just because one has the ability and power to kill, that does not give you the right. If a squirrel goes into your house, I get you want to remove it. But then to go out into THEIR HOMES to kill all or as many as you can because ‘they bother you’ and you have a gun? I just wanted to know if these people who are killing ever feel anything. And why is it different from one animal to another?

    • The Fire Critic

      As I understand it, they killed the squirrels and used the meat for food and pelts as well. To me, that is hunting. I understand that others don’t get it. To be completely honest, it is actually a lot more humane than most of the meat we eat in grocery stores that are raised in less than humane conditions and killed for food. If it really bothered me, I would raise my own livestock and kill it for food. I appreciate others taking care of that part for me.

      I understand why people are in an uproar. I personally don’t agree with their stance. I think that their efforts could be much more beneficial elsewhere.

  • Mary Pappas

    That still doesn’t even address what I was asking. I don’t hunt. My dad did when I was a young child. Until the time a doe jumped in front of a big buck and he wounded her, and he had to kill her so she would not suffer. My dad was a police officer. He never hunted again. (And before you ask, no I did not eat the deer meat). I am trying to get inside the mind of someone who hunts, but who also has ‘pets’, are they not all animals? I have read something another hunter wrote, how he uses ‘snap traps’ for squirrels (in NY). He hunts all kinds of things. He spoke of going overseas and they ate dogs there, but he could not do it. I thought, ok, why not? They are all animals, even dogs were not always kept as ‘pets’ (or what our domesticated dogs evolved from, at least). I just want to know, these people who are behind the gun, they kill, does it not effect them at all, just because they are going to eat it? I know you may say this has nothing to do with ‘the slam’. I watched them on videos so proud of ‘their kill’, carrying them by their tails, heck even had them hanging out of cars. Is that ok with you, too?