Earlier this month, the Alaska Board of Game passed “Proposal 155″ reauthorizing its controversial plan to kill all the wolves who live in a portion of the Kenai Peninsula (Unit 15C, southwest of Kenai National Refuge) to artificially boost numbers of moose for hunters. The board unanimously passed the proposal despite opposition from the public and the regional Fish and Game Advisory Committee (the Homer Fish and Game Advisory Committee) who objected to the proposal unanimously. This decision also flies in the face of statistics presented by biologist and former member of the Board of Game, Vic Van Ballenberghe, demonstrating that Alaska’s “Intensive Management” of wolves and bears fails to yield more moose, caribou and deer for human hunters.
The proposal gives the Board of Game the authority to allow the public to hunt and trap wolves, both from the ground and from the air via aerial gunning.
In 2012, the Alaska Board of Game passed its original Intensive Management proposal. The heavy-handed plan, however, was never implemented due to opposition from the scientific community and public outcry. The Alaska Department of Fish and Game’s (ADFG) division of Wildlife Conservation determined that the peninsula’s moose population decline was generally due to “overharvest” and habitat limitations, not increased predation by wolves. The agency thus tabled the plan to collect additional data to support a final management decision.
The Alaska Board of Game has repeatedly opted for intensive lethal predator control as their management tool of choice. It is time that science, not special interest groups, guide responsible wildlife management policy, especially with so much at stake in one of Alaska’s most iconic wild places.
Please urge the Alaska Department of Fish and Game to reject Proposal 155.
President Obama has one more thing to do before he clears his desk in the Oval Office. He needs to eliminate the McKittrick Policy – a loophole that allows endangered wolves to be killed by hunters without any prosecution from the Department of Justice. This policy is named after a rifleman who shot one of the most important alpha wolves reintroduced in Yellowstone National Park in 1995. More from the East Oregonian.
The U.S. Justice Department’s McKittrick policy prohibits prosecuting individuals who kill endangered wildlife unless it can be PROVED that they knew they were targeting a protected animal.
The policy provides a loophole that has prevented criminal prosecution of dozens of individuals who killed grizzly bears, highly endangered California condors as well as DOZENS of critically endangered Mexican wolves.
TAKE ACTION: Urge president to please close the “wolf-killer” loophole by eliminating the McKittrick Policy before he leaves office!
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