End Indiana Coyote Killing Contests
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To usher in the New Year, over half a dozen coyote killing contests will be held in Indiana with prizes being awarded to the teams that kill the largest coyote and the most coyotes. Ironically, these killing derbies are occurring on the heels of the Indiana Department of Natural Resources’ (“IDNR”) public announcement vocalizing concern about the foreseeable threat of Chronic Wasting Disease (“CWD”) in Indiana’s white-tailed deer population.
As reported in the Indianapolis Star (December 22, 2018), CWD is a deadly, potentially devastating disease that will be “a permanent drain on resources to manage”. IDNR, the regulatory agency tasked with preserving and protecting Indiana’s wildlife resources for the benefit of all citizens, should ban all contest killings of natural predators given the whole state is simultaneously on high alert for the arrival of CWD in its deer population.
Unlike hunters, natural predators such as coyotes deliberately target the most vulnerable and unhealthy deer and other prey animals. According to Sharon Vogel, CWE’s Senior Biologist, “Vulnerable individuals in the deer population are those most likely to succumb to or spread Chronic Wasting Disease (“CWD”) and other wildlife illnesses. The lethal removal of large numbers of predator species given the looming threat of CWD seems reckless.”
Coyotes, like other predator species, are needed now, more than ever, to help combat this foreseeable threat to Indiana’s deer population. Killing competitions disrupt the vital role coyotes play in healthy ecosystems and encourage mass slaughter while glorifying killing at the expense of ethics.
Please sign this petition to send a message to IDNR that coyote killing contests should not be tolerated in Indiana.
All concerns about the upcoming coyote killing contests in Indiana should be directed to: IDNR Deputy Director Samantha DeWester at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Click here for additional information specific to wildlife killing contests in general and here for a statement from conservation scientists about coyote killing.
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