2.07.2010

u.s. election changes nothing for many creatures: wolves slaughtered, thanks to bush-obama policies

The news about wild canines in the US is absolutely stomach-turning. More than 400 gray wolves have been slaughtered since Obama's Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar made good on Bush-era plans to remove the gray wolf from the endangered species list.

The other night, I saw a friend who is also passionate about wild canines - one of the people we visited the Haliburton Forest Wolf Centre with. I remarked how I can't understand killing such magnificent creatures for no reason. She said, "It's worse than killing them for no reason. It's killing them for fun."

I was struck by the appropriateness of that correction. Killing them for fun. Not for food, or even for commerce. For recreation.

And never forget, the slaughter stems directly from government policy. For these animals, as for many of us, it's a one-party system.

The only silver lining is that policy can be changed.

From email from the NRDC Save BioGems project:
The war on wolves is getting uglier by the day.

It's tragic enough that a record 402 wolves were killed last year in Idaho and Montana after their removal from the endangered species list -- an astronomical level that amounts to one-third of the entire wolf population in those two states.

But what saddens me almost as much are the barbaric tactics that wolf-haters have been employing lately.

For example, on Christmas Eve, Idaho wolf supporter Lynne Stone received a threatening email from a wolf hater there. The email only said "Merry Cristmas" (spelled without the 'h') and included a morbid photo of a bloodied dead wolf in the back of a pickup truck.

This disturbing photo and sinister email remind us of what wolves and their supporters are up against -- and why we need you to speak out now against the savage slaughter of wolves.

. . .

Here are a few shocking examples of how ugly the situation has become:

Just a few weeks ago, a Wolf/Coyote/Predator Killing Derby was held in Idaho, where prizes were given away for shooting the most animals. Participants were told in advance they'd be able to use "wolf distress calls" to attract nearby wolves to the rifle range.

. . . a sickening sign outside an Idaho restaurant proclaimed, "Tag a Wolf. Get a Free Pizza and Pitcher of Beer."

. . .

Many wolf packs have been decimated. A majority of Idaho's Basin Butte pack, a favorite of wolf-watchers, was wiped out, seven of them by government agents firing from a helicopter or airplane. The remaining members of Montana's Sage Creek pack were also killed by aerial gunners. Four of the 10 wolves in Yellowstone Park's much-studied Cottonwood Creek pack were killed when they ventured out of the park's boundaries. And government agents have recently been authorized to destroy several packs in Montana.

This disastrous open season on wolves has reversed so much of our hard-won progress over the past several years. . . .

Over the next critical months, NRDC will be facing off in federal court against Interior Secretary Salazar over the fate of the wolf.

But legal action is just one important tactic. Public action is another. That's why we're urging you to show the Interior Secretary that you care about wolves.

Powerful government agencies and a vocal minority of hunters and ranchers have lined up against the wolves of the Northern Rockies. But the wolves have you. It's urgent that you stand with us now.

Even if you've signed other wolf petitions, please add your name to this one. Tell Salazar to call off the guns!

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Ever since going to the Wolf Centre last summer, we've been planning to return for a winter visit, when the wolfs are in full coat and most active. I was very disappointed to learn that the Centre is only open on weekends from October to May! Unfortunately, I can't take a day off to go up there again. As a consolation prize, we're going to Jungle Cat World, where my wolf-loving war-resister friend goes regularly to interact with wolves, cougars, tigers and other creatures.

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More pics from our wolf visit here.

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Please don't forget to sign the petition.

7 comments:

redsock said...

you can re-use this title for a lot of posts.

just plug in something else instead of "wolves slaughtered".

or instead of "wolves".

deang said...

That's my main problem with hunting in this society: That people are killing animals for fun, because they enjoy the slaughter. Like the anti-environmental, gun-rights people who hang out along the borders of Yellowstone just waiting for a bison to set foot beyond its boundaries, just so they can shoot it and watch it suffer and die for their enjoyment. It's sick.

L-girl said...

It is sick. For me there's a difference between ethical hunting and slaughter. I would never hunt personally, but I don't see it as slaughter in itself. But this... this is just senseless massacre.

And there's a connection between Allan's comment and this. What is valued, what is celebrated.

Dharma Seeker said...

Sadly people in Oakville are generally VERY anti-coyote. ODHS's Manager of Animal Protective Services, Rob Bauer, does a great job of explaining the nature of coyotes and best strategies to co-exist with them. He's interviewed for the Oakville Beaver several times a year.

The irony is that coyotes are only flourishing as predators because the former apex predators - wolves - have seen their populations and habitats decimated.

Now some people are demanding a coyote solution because their cats (which should be inside anyway) and small dogs (which should be supervised outdoors anyway, given our proximity to coyotes) are occasionally getting attacked/eaten by a predator that is more savvy, adaptable, and comfortable being near humans than its predecessor.

The stupidity of some people boggles the mind. If people could eliminate coyotes - which they can't, it's been proven again and again that coyotes just adapt to new threats and new situations, another predator would simply move up the ladder to take its place. Every ecosystem needs predators. It's just a fact.

Dharma Seeker said...

The petition won't let me sign with a Canadian address :( A state and zip code are required.

L-girl said...

The petition won't let me sign with a Canadian address :( A state and zip code are required.

I know. I used a fake state and zip code. I also emailed them asking if they could use forms that allow you first choose country. Most petition sites do that.

L-girl said...

The stupidity of some people boggles the mind.

Word.

Thanks for the info re coyotes and Oakville.