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You Cannot Love Game and Hate Wolves

One of the most common objections to predators on the landscape is their impact on prey populations. As far back as 1938, Aldo Leopold set the record straight. While the best-available science may indicate that we have the technical ability to “manage” a wolf hunt without endangering the population viability, there is no science, past or present, that concludes it is absolutely necessary to hunt wolves.

From Aldo Leopold’s “Conservation” (1938):

“Harmony with land is like harmony with a friend; you cannot cherish his right hand and chop off his left. That is to say, you cannot love game and hate predators; you cannot conserve the waters and waste the ranges; you cannot build the forest and mine the farm.

The land is one organism. Its parts, like our own parts, compete with each other and cooperate with each other. The competition is as much a part of the inner workings as the cooperation. You can regulate them – cautiously – but not abolish them.”