Target: Neil Kornze, Director of the United States Bureau of Land Management (BLM)
Goal: Applaud government officials for revoking permit for killing contest
A proposal passed earlier this year allowing hunters to kill predators for contest over three days every year for five years beginning in January 2015 has been canceled. A lawsuit filed from conservation groups and numerous petitions, including a ForceChange petition, demanded the contest be canceled and, thankfully, the Bureau of Land Management listened.
An anti-wolf organization calling itself “Idaho for Wildlife” wanted to host a killing derby every year on public land to keep predator populations down, particularly wolves and coyotes. The proposal stated that for three days up to 500 participants would be allowed to kill predatory animals for amusement and cash prizes. The group claimed it would help the ecosystem because a smaller population of predators would help elk and deer flourish. However, a large number of participants on a killing spree for three days could significantly harm the fragile wolf population. Additionally, many Idaho opponents claim hunting predatory animals would not affect the ecosystem because larger populations of deer and elk would just lead to increased hunting.
Not only is the concept of a killing contest archaic, it is inhumane to target wolves for hunting when they were removed from the endangered species list in 2011 following many years of recovery in central and eastern Idaho, where public lands can provide refuge from hunters. The Bureau of Land Management originally granted the anti-wolf organization a permit for the killing festival, however, after receiving widespread criticism from conservation groups and Idaho residents, the permit has been revoked.
Additionally, when the organization was granted its killing derby permit, contest organizers were hoping to spread their contest statewide. It is important that killing contests are not allowed anywhere in the United States because they will most likely lead to more illegal hunting.
The Bureau of Land Management made a positive decision canceling the killing contest, and saving lives of predatory animals. Please sign the petition below to applaud Neil Kornze and other officials at the BLM for putting a stop to this unnecessary wolf killing spree.
Dear Director of Bureau of Land Management Neil Kornze,
Thank you for your decision to revoke Idaho for Wildlife’s permit to kill countless predatory animals throughout a three-day contest. By canceling the inhumane contest, you have helped save hundreds of lives.
Killing contests for cash prizes and entertainment are cruel and unethical. It is inhumane to target predatory animals, especially wolves that were only recently taken off the endangered species list. Public land has helped the wolf population recover in recent years, and a government-approved killing spree would only serve to threaten their long-term survival.
We applaud you for the decision to cancel the killing contest and hope you continue to make the right decisions regarding Idaho’s wildlife.
[Your Name Here]
Photo Credit: Creative Commons via Flickr
Original Petition: End Wolf-Killing Competition