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Trump Administration Seeks to Allow Baited Brown Bear-Hunting in Kenai National Wildlife Refuge

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) has reopened the public comment period and announced a public hearing on the agency’s proposed rule to amend public use regulations for Kenai National Wildlife Refuge (NWR) that would, among other changes, permit trapping, and killing of brown bears over bait and remove the requirement for a federal trapping permit. 

The rule seeks to:

  • permit brown bear baiting
  • open new areas of the refuge to trapping
  • eliminate requirements that trappers periodically check their traps 
  • remove the requirement that trappers identify their traps
  • permit trapping methods that are more likely to increase trapping of nontarget species
  • permit the use of steel leg hold traps with teeth, spikes or serrated jaws on the Refuge

Alaska’s wildlife refuges are required by federal law to be managed not as private game reserves but to protect natural diversity.

The proposed unethical predator control practices have no place in modern society, and certainly not in a wildlife refuge.

The comment period is reopened from October 9 to November 9 and a virtual public hearing on the proposed rule is scheduled for Monday, October 26 at 4:00 p.m. Alaska Standard Time. 

To participate in (or just listen to) the public hearing, registration is required. Please pre-register using the button below:

Alaska Wildlife Alliance is providing resources to help people take action. For AWA talking points and a link to submit your comment in the Federal Register, please click below.