November 14th 2012, the B.C. government unveiled its Draft Wolf Management Plan. This draft goes on to outline a grim future for B.C. wolves that amounts to a government sponsored kill program. We believe that money should go towards education on how to protect livestock using predator friendly husbandry practices. There should be implementation of “No Harvest” zones along with limiting recreational activities in sensitive caribou habitats. Also, the BC government should stop or at least minimize the amount of crown land it is leasing to livestock producers. Up to 80% of crown land (wildlife habitat) is currently being leased out to ranchers.
The plan discusses the “harvesting” of wolves as if they are some kind of crop, like wheat or barley. It further states the lofty objective to "...ensure self-sustaining populations throughout the species range." Wolves and nature sustain their own populations; humans cannot control the process of an ecosystem. A self–sustaining population is a good start, but nothing to be too proud of. The report states that this would allow harvest rates of up to 34% = 2890 wolves of 8500 to be killed.
There’s no mention of the distinct and unique genetic populations that exist across the province, nor that B.C. is one of the last places on Earth where wolves can live as nature intended. This province has an opportunity to do something that very few places on the planet have, to deliberately preserve wolves in their most natural form as part of the process of natural selection. The current draft does not support such a goal.
The draft states:
“Control specific populations where wolves are preventing caribou recovery”. This is a continuation of the 2001 sterilization program; they are killing wolves while human development continues. There has been NO change!
“Packs typically composed of a breeding pair and offspring 1 – 2 years old”, painting a picture that this is natural. Untouched wolfpopulationsaremostoftencomprisedofextendedfamilies. Ithasbeenproventhatwolveswillstaywiththeirnatalpack until their 4th or 5th year where they are not exploited.
Hunting seasons will have no change; no bag limit, no tag year round.
Livestock producers will still be allowed to hunt & trap wolves on their property
The draft uses the Recommendations for Predator-Prey Management to Benefit Recovery of Mountain Caribou in BC to assert
that long term caribou persistence requires ongoing wolf killing or killing more primary prey (deer, elk and moose).
“Most ethical approach is to do aerial culls on wolves” How is this ethical????
There are no statements about the quality of life for wolves and what it actually means to disrupt a pack or extended family with hunting, trapping, poisoning, aerial shooting and sterilizing. There is also nothing said about the harmful impacts on the genetic diversity of wolf populations caused by the hands of human.
The way this draft plan is structured, unless significant public opposition is mobilized in the coming weeks, the B.C. government will further relax and liberalize wolf hunting, trapping and other kill programs for years to come. Pacific Wild, Valhalla Wilderness Society, Furbearers Defenders, the LifeForce Foundation, the Northern Lights Wolf Centre, Canadian Wolf Coalition and other concerned groups will be following this issue and speaking out for wolves on what is clearly shaping up to be a renewed government-sanctioned assault on B.C.'s wolves.
You can help save wolves not only in British Columbia but also in surrounding areas (Alberta, Montana, NWT, and Yukon), please contact Terry Lake of BC Ministry of Environment (250) 387-1187 email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Visit us at www.northernlightswildlife.com
￼We don’t have much time! December 5th is the deadline for public input, after this they will be finalizing this compilation of ways to kill wolves.
Link to video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=57Qy3uU9iV4