During spring and early summer, all of the yellow pine and fir country in this section is subjected to a plague of tabano flies, which are about the size of large horse-flies. These flies swarm in great numbers and attack stock and game so viciously that, as a consequence, the animals are frequently much reduced in flesh. The Apaches take advantage of this plague to set fire to the forest and lie in wait for the game, which has taken shelter in the smoke to rid itself from the flies. In this way the Indians kill large numbers of breeding deer, and at the same time destroy considerable areas of forest. While on a visit to this district in the summer of 1899 Mr. Pinchot saw the smoke of five forest fires at different places in the mountains, which had been set by hunting parties of Indians for the purpose. The only method by which not only the game but the forest along the western side of this reserve can be successfully protected will be to have the western border of the forest reserve extended to take in a belt eight to twelve miles wide of the Indian reservation. This would include Ord and Thomas peaks, and would serve efficiently to protect the country about the headwaters of the rivers from these destructive inroads.
The northern border of this section of the reserve is about one hundred miles by wagon road from the nearest point on the Santa Fe Pacific Railroad. Seven miles from its northern border is the town of Springerville, with a few hundred inhabitants in its vicinity engaged in farming, cattle and sheep growing. From Springerville north extends the plains of the Little Colorado to St. Johns, the county seat of Apache county, containing a few hundred people. To the south and east of the reserve there are no towns for some distance, except a few small settlements along the course of the San Francisco River in New Mexico, which are far removed from the part of the reserve which is most suitable for game. The fact that deer continue abundant in the district about the head of Black River, although hunted at all seasons for many years, and the continuance there of elk for so long, under the same conditions, is good evidence of the favorable conditions existing in that section for game.
Constitution of the Boone and Crockett Club
FOUNDED DECEMBER 1887.
This Club shall be known as the Boone and Crockett Club.
The objects of the Club shall be:
1. To promote manly sport with the rifle.
2. To promote travel and exploration in the wild and unknown, or but partially known, portions of the country.
3. To work for the preservation of the large game of this country, and, so far as possible, to further legislation for that purpose, and to assist in enforcing the existing laws.
4. To promote inquiry into, and to record observations on, the habits and natural history of the various wild animals.