vegansaurus!

04/05/2012

Hunters gleefully torture wolves since Idaho removed federal protection  »

This is Forest Service employee Josh Bransford happily posing with a wolf he trapped in Idaho. The wolf wasn’t just trapped; when some passing motorists saw the limping animal, they thought it’d be super fun to non-fatally shoot the trapped wolf a few times. Bransford posted some pics online and people were positively giddy. Awesome.

People make me so sick sometimes. This is exactly what people opposed to the de-listing were worried about. This isn’t just an animal who’s threatened by habitat loss or something, hunters and farmers hate wolves. They are in competition with them. It’s not like a few will be killed now, these dudes are out for blood. 

According to Environment News Service, people are calling for Bransford to be fired. Though you’re allowed to kill wolves now, there are actually rules about it:

Idaho state law makes it a crime for a person who “causes or procures any animal to be cruelly treated, or who, having the charge or custody of any animal either as owner or otherwise, subjects any animal to cruelty.” The law also requires that “destruction of animals for population control,” the stated reason for wolf trapping, be carried out humanely.

Stopping to pose while an animal hobbles in pain is certainly not carrying out the murder humanely. Though I don’t know that Idaho actually cares about enforcing laws. They certainly don’t care about upholding promises. From Earth Island Journal:

Removal of Endangered Species Act protection for the wolf was based on the assurances of state game agencies that they would manage wolves to ensure survival of the species and approval of state wolf management plans by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

Idaho has since abandoned the targets of its state plan and instead said it will seek to reduce the population from roughly 1,000 wolves to as low as 150 wolves. Since the delisting, 375 wolves have been reported killed in Idaho. Idaho’s wolf hunt remains open in portions of the state.

As you know, wolves were removed from the federal protection list last year in Idaho and Montana. Since then:

By late March some 117 Idaho wolves had been killed in traps and snares, and another 251 shot. Montana saw 166 killed, for a total of 534 wolves out of an estimated 1150 in the two states. Although Montana’s season ended in February, Idaho is not quite done. Both states have announced plans for increased hunting in the 2012-2013, and discussions are underway among hunting groups and state officials to allow private donations to establish wolf bounties.

Wolf bounties? They aren’t criminals—they’re animals just trying to live! This is so absurd. As you can see, it’s not like there a gagillion wolves walking around. This animal that was nearly wiped off the earth has rebounded to a little more than a thousand in those areas. How does an animal go from federal protection to being legally culled by half? There needs to be national intervention. States shouldn’t be able to just do whatever they want with regard to their environment and wildlife. This is bullshit. I’m angry!

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