We are deeply disturbed about Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks wolf hunting and trapping plan for the upcoming 2012-13 season. We will continue to demand that decision-makers use science to guide their policies and to urge restraint when enacting these policies as they relate to wolves throughout the Northern Rockies region.
For the past 5 years, the wolf population in the Greater Yellowstone ecosystem has stabilized at around 130. Trapping to kill 60% of wolves in the upcoming 2012-13 hunting and trapping season could threaten the greater Yellowstone population and possibly replicate the 2009 elimination of the Cottonwood Pack in 2010. We want a hunt and trap-free buffer zone enacted now to surround Yellowstone National Park to protect this modest population of wolves who are at serious risk.
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By doing so, I joined the National Wolfwatcher Coalition in its disappointment with Montana FWP’s 2012-13 wolf hunting/trapping plans for many reasons. Although you plan to revisit the progress of the hunt in December, I want a hunt-trap-free buffer now to surround Yellowstone National Park, specifically in management units 310, 320 and 390. Those units account for a large area of southern Montana from the Absaroka Mountains to the Madison Range and north as far as Great Falls and Lewistown.
For the past 5 years, the wolf population in the Greater Yellowstone ecosystem has stabilized at around 130. Trapping to kill 60% of wolves could decimate the greater Yellowstone population and possibly replicate the 2009 elimination of the Cottonwood Pack.
Healthy wolf populations maintain the balance of nature in the park as well as generate revenue locally and provide jobs in the Greater Yellowstone region. Does Montana truly wish to ignore the economic advantages of the largest growing industry in the region – wolf watching – to appease narrow special interests with a clear political agenda? I expect my participation via this petition will receive prompt consideration and result in the immediate revision of your wolf hunting and trapping plan for 2012-13.