Target: Preston Cole, Chair of the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources
Goal: Prevent the annual Wisconsin grey wolf hunt from taking place
Wisconsin’s annual grey wolf hunt will begin soon and animal rights groups from around the country are doing whatever they can to put a stop to it. The Wisconsin wolf hunt is unlike any other in the United States and is not only unnecessary, as is any other, but makes allowances for cruel hunting practices. This cannot continue and these wolves need our protection.
The annual Wisconsin grey wolf hunt began in 2012 with a kill quota of 116. During the 2013 season the quota was increased to 251 and will likely remain the same for this year’s hunt, which is nearly half of the total wolf population in the state. Those that support the hunt argue that the wolf population has recovered, but this simply isn’t true. In 1974 the Wisconsin wolf population was zero because of human intervention and loss of habitat. In 2009 it was estimated to fall between 620 and 660. Since 2005, when the wolf population passed 350, the Department of Natural Resources has tried year after year to have the gray wolf removed from the endangered species list. Each time they have failed, however, because of the efforts of the Humane Society of the United States.
Howard Gladman, Humane Society Director for Minnesota, is one of those who has continued to go to court to ensure wolves stay on the list. “We’ve argued successfully before federal courts that the wolf is not, in fact, recovered,” he says. “The Endangered Species Act states ‘a species which is in danger of extinction throughout all or a significant portion of its range’ is endangered. The grey wolf presently occupies only 5 percent of its historical range. Until the wolf is fully recovered, it should remain federally protected.”
The lobby for the wolf hunt is so strong that the state legislature has offered a reimbursement program, in which $2,500 will be given to the owner of any dog that is killed during the hunt. What sets the Wisconsin wolf hunt apart from others is that they allow hunters to use leg traps to snare wolves, which are then shot in the head. This practice has been outlawed in ever other state because of its cruelty.
Please take a moment to sign the petition below and demand that Wisconsin end this cruel and unnecessary hunt. The wolves have just as much right to be there as humans.
Dear Mr. Cole,
The annual Wisconsin grey wolf hunt will soon begin and roughly one-third of the state’s wolf population will be eliminated in the process. Wolf populations across the country have finally managed to stabilize and recover and now you want to set everything back. Not only that, the hunt allows for cruel and inhumane tactics such as leg traps.
Please put an end to this hunt immediately. Wolves have been forced to repopulate for centuries because of the ignorant notion that they are somehow a threat to our ability to live comfortably. We cannot continue to impose our will on the environment in such a destructive way or view the endangered species list as a statute for what should and shouldn’t be hunted. These wolves should be protected and allowed to thrive again across the country, not hunted, destroyed, and forced to struggle simply because we fear them.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: viclea via Flickr